News Headlines

News Headlines
Health care news from around the state and nation

News Headlines Article

California’s Budget Proposal Would Expand Health Care To Some Undocumented Immigrants
National Public Radio

California lawmakers are poised to offer low-income young adults living in the country illegally access to full health benefits, putting the state on track to become the first in the country to expand its insurance program to all working poor under the age of 26 regardless of immigration status.

The Democratic-controlled state legislature agreed on Sunday to allow 19 to 25-year-old undocumented residents to receive Medi-Cal, the state’s health insurance program partly funded by federal dollars.

News Headlines Article

California OKs healthcare for some adult immigrants
Modern Healthcare

Some low-income adults in California living in the country illegally will soon get their health benefits paid for by taxpayers.

Democrats in the state Legislature on Sunday agreed to make adults between the ages of 19 and 25 eligible for the state’s Medicaid program. Not everyone will get those benefits, only people whose incomes are low enough to qualify for the program. State officials estimate the program will cover an additional 90,000 people at a cost of $98 million.

News Headlines Article

Why some CEOs figure Medicare for All is good for business
Modern Healthcare

Walk into a big-box retailer such as Walmart or Michaels and you’re likely to see MCS Industries’ picture frames, decorative mirrors or kitschy wall décor.

Adjacent to a dairy farm a few miles west of downtown Easton, MCS is the nation’s largest maker of such household products. But MCS doesn’t actually make anything here anymore. It has moved its manufacturing operations to Mexico and China, with the last manufacturing jobs departing this city along the Delaware River in 2005. MCS now has about 175 U.S. employees and 600 people overseas.

News Headlines Article

CMS looks to revise HCAHPS survey amid complaints from hospitals
Modern Healthcare

The CMS wants to revise its mandatory and long-standing patient experience survey for hospitals. Health system leaders say it’s about time.

The CMS recently asked for approval from the White House Office of Management and Budget to collect public feedback from stakeholders on possible changes to the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems survey, commonly referred to as HCAHPS. Comments to the OMB closed May 16 and at deadline the CMS was still awaiting approval before moving forward.

News Headlines Article

Healthcare consolidation goes beyond usual players
Modern Healthcare

Consolidation in the health system and health insurance industries has been a focus for years. But a new report sheds light on how the “bigger is better” mantra has taken hold in companies that make syringes, X-ray machines or other healthcare products

The report, prepared by the Open Markets Institute using data from IBISWorld, shows a small handful of companies dominate their respective markets in certain healthcare sectors that tend to get less of a spotlight than their payer and provider counterparts.

News Headlines Article

FDA Overlooked Red Flags In Drugmaker’s Testing of New Depression Medicine
Kaiser Health News

Ketamine is a darling of combat medics and clubgoers, an anesthetic that can quiet your pain without suppressing breathing and a hallucinogenic that can get you high with little risk of a fatal overdose.

For some patients, it also has dwelled in the shadows of conventional medicine as a depression treatment — prescribed by their doctors, but not approved for that purpose by the federal agency responsible for determining which treatments are “safe and effective.”

News Headlines Article

Commentary: It’s time to regard reproductive healthcare as standard healthcare
Modern Healthcare

A patient with asthma comes to a health center seeking an inhaler. This is the nearest health center where he can get one, and it took him three hours to drive there. Although an inhaler is a standard treatment for asthma, it is nearly impossible to obtain.

The doctor reads a government script that talks about the dangers of inhalers (which are not based on medical facts). The patient is told that if he still wants the inhaler, he can come back in 72 hours—driving six hours round trip and taking time off from work again. Through all of this, if the doctor fails to dot any “i” or cross any “t”, that physician could end up in jail.

If this scenario seems too ludicrous to exist in medicine, think again. This is the reality for abortion care in the U.S. And it’s a major threat to public health across the country.

News Headlines Article

A cautionary tale about medical marijuana and opioid deaths
Washington Post

Five years ago, a study of death certificate data attracted notice for suggesting that states that passed medical marijuana laws saw 25 percent fewer opioid overdose deaths on average than states that barred medical cannabis.

The authors were careful to point out that this finding was only a correlation, an intriguing hint at something that needed further exploration. There was no way to establish whether the availability of medical cannabis in some states protected against overdosing on harder drugs, even if some people used marijuana for pain.

News Headlines Article

Heartburn Drugs Can Lead to Fatal Heart or Kidney Disease
New York Times

The heartburn drugs called proton pump inhibitors, or P.P.I.s, are known to have serious side effects. Now researchers have documented the ways in which they may be deadly. The report, in BMJ Open, used a Veterans Affairs database of 157,625 new users of P.P.I.s like Prevacid and Prilosec, and 56,842 people prescribed a different type of acid-suppressing medicine called H2 blockers (Pepcid and Zantac, for example).

News Headlines Article

Why Your Perception Of ‘Old’ Changes As You Age
Kaiser Health News

My perception of old age is inextricably linked to my grandmother. When I was a kid, I thought this 65-year-old, white-haired woman whose entire body wobbled when she walked was very old. Now that I’m 66, my personal perception — or perhaps, misperception — of old age has changed. I suspect I’ve got lots of company.

Many of us are convinced that while everyone else is aging, that person we see in the mirror every morning is magically aging at a somehow slower pace. The age confusion can start early. A 2018 Michigan State University online survey of respondents ages 10 to 89 revealed that most think middle age begins at 30 — and that old age begins at, OMG, 50.

News Headlines Article

Leaders threaten state audit if Tri-City doesn’t provide plan to re-open psychiatric units
San Diego Union-Tribune

A letter sent by two local leaders that demands Tri-City Medical Center come up with a plan to re-open its shuttered psychiatric units or face a possible state audit encountered immediate pushback Monday.

The letter, sent by county Supervisor Nathan Fletcher and state Rep.

Commands