Here is an article that stood out amid the tidal wave of media coverage of Medicare and Medicaid’s 50th anniversary this year. It’s a piece about why Medicaid matters, posted on the Health Affairs blog.
As you read, keep in mind that the article is written by two people who strongly support the program: former Denver Health Chief Executive Patricia Gabow, who serves on the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission and on the National Governors’ Association Health Advisory Board, and former Senate Democratic Leader Tom Daschle. It is not, by and large, a critique. Continue reading
Potentially Avoidable Hospitalizations (PAH) among nursing home residents are costly, expose residents to additional health risks and exact a toll on patients and families. Many of these readmissions occur after hours or on weekends — when there is no physician or nurse practitioner readily available.
PAHs are hospitalizations that could have been avoided because the condition could have been prevented or treated outside of an inpatient hospital setting. One skilled nursing home chain is using a novel telemedicine program to bring board-certified physicians to the patient bedside, providing two-way video communication to assess, diagnosis and minimize readmissions. It may also save the health system hundreds of thousands of dollars every year. Continue reading
When drafting the Affordable Care Act in 2010, Congress wanted to foster competition among health insurers. So it offered loans to nonprofit organizations that wanted to start health insurance consumer oriented and operated plans (called co-ops) in the states.
In theory, the co-ops are a great idea to increase competition and consumer choice. Congress included $2.4 billion in the ACA to establish these member-operated health insurance plans. The co-ops are particularly important today because five of the largest health insurers could soon be reduced to three if Anthem acquires Cigna and Aetna merges with Humana. Continue reading
The agency responsible for overseeing dental education in the United States is moving forward with plans to establish a national accreditation process for dental therapist training programs.
In a move that was greeted with both criticism and praise, the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA) voted Aug. 7 to begin the accreditation process for programs to train non-dentists to perform certain dental procedures, including drilling and extracting teeth.
Such providers are already providing care on tribal lands in Alaska as well as in Minnesota. A number of other states are considering employing the dental therapists, who work as part of a team of providers supervised by dentists. Continue reading
If you want to get a better grasp on the intricacies of screenings and assessing their risk-benefit analysis, there’s now another option to reading about it. The inaugural episode of a new podcast series at HealthNewsReview.org features Hanna Bloomfield, M.D., M.P.H., sounding off on the problem of blanket promotion of cardiovascular screening and similar medical tests. Continue reading
The uninsured rate among all Americans in the first quarter of this year dropped to 9.2 percent, according to the latest report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics, released Wednesday.
This is estimated to be the lowest rate of all uninsured Americans, of all ages, since 1972, when the center began reporting on that data from the National Health Interview Survey, Reena Flores reported for CBS News. Continue reading
White papers can be useful tools for journalists. Ideally, they provide authoritative, in-depth information from government or nonprofits about specific policy, diseases, programs, or issues. However, they can also be powerful marketing tools, used by corporations to position a specific product or service as the “solution” to whatever the “problem” is.
Then there is the white paper released by a nonprofit, but developed with corporate financial support. Continue reading
Please welcome these new professional and student members to AHCJ. All new members are welcome to stop by this post’s comment section to introduce themselves.
- Jennifer Abbasi, independent journalist, Portland, Ore. (@jenabbasi)
- Melissa Bailey, reporter, Boston Globe Media, Cambridge, Mass.
- Sharon Begley, senior science writer, Boston Globe Media, Dorchester, Mass. (@sxbegle)
- Michael Bohl, medical producer, The Dr. Oz Show, New York,
- Tamara Brown, student, NOVA Southeastern University, Lakewood, N.J.
- Samantha Costa, health and wellness consumer advice reporter, U.S. News & World Report, Silver Spring, Md. (@SamCosta1050)
- Michael Crupain, medical unit chief of staff, The Dr. Oz Show, New York,
- Elizabeth Devitt, independent journalist, Aptos, Calif. (@ElizDevitt)
- Sheena Faherty, student, Duke University, Durham, N.C. (@junglequeen18)
- Karen Falla, reporter, Univision Communications Inc., Dallas
- Sheilah Fulton, student, Alpharetta, Ga.
- Aimalohi Giwa-Amu, researcher/producer, The Dr. Oz Show, New York,
- Arthur Golab, data editor/reporter, Modern Healthcare, Chicago
- Gina Hendersen, managing editor, Frontline Medical Communications
- Charles Hyman, researcher/producer, The Dr. Oz Show, Brooklyn, N.Y.
- Andrew Joseph, reporter, Boston Globe Media, Boston
- Laura Joszt, assistant managing editor, The American Journal of Managed Care, Somerset, N.J. (@AJMC_Journal)
- Edward Prewitt, editorial director, HealthLeaders Media, Danvers, Mass. (@edprewitt)
- Casey Ross, health & medical reporter, The Plain Dealer, Cleveland
- Stephanie Simon, managing editor, news, Boston Globe Media, Dorchester, Mass. (@StephanieSimon_)
- Leigh Wright, assistant professor, Murray State University, Murray, Ky. (@leighwright)
- Brie Zeltner, reporter, The Plain Dealer, Cleveland (@briezeltner)
If you haven’t joined yet, see what member benefits you’re missing out on: Access to more than 50 journals and databases, tip sheets and articles from your colleagues on how they’ve reported stories, conferences, workshops, online training, reporting guides and more. Join AHCJ today to get a wealth of support and tools to help you.
With no new cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS) in South Korea since July 2, the outbreak appears to have ended. Commentaries such as a recent Nature editorial are assessing the damage and the response – and the damage of the response.
In total, 186 people became sick with the virus and 36 died. Yet the response to the virus in South Korea shared something in common with the response to Ebola in the United States during the West African outbreak last year: It was over the top, largely because public officials have yet to master adequate risk communication. Continue reading
AHCJ member Rita Rubin explores the tricky territory of working as a doctor and a journalist in a “Medical News & Perspectives” piece in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
She highlights several examples of physician-journalists who have walked the ethical tight rope, including Nancy Snyderman, Sanjay Gupta, Mehmet Oz, Jennifer Ashton and David Samadi. She also quotes Tom Linden, who left his medical practice to work in television news and points out how important it is to keep the two roles separate, a point he has made in the past. Continue reading