Viewpoints: The Importance Of Hepatitis C Testing; Medicaid Needs To Provide Coverage For Circumcision
Los Angeles Times: Hepatitis C Test For Baby Boomers Saves Lives
I consider myself to be a fortunate person. I have a good education, a great job and excellent health insurance. I am a baby boomer who has aged reasonably well and can look forward to a fairly comfortable retirement. I am also fortunate because I was diagnosed with hepatitis C by a proactive and knowledgeable doctor in the late 1990s and had the opportunity to be treated and cured. The odds are that if I had not been diagnosed and treated, I would be on a liver transplant list right now, have liver cancer or even be dead from this disease (Martha Saly, 8/21).
Modern Healthcare: Continued Strain, Fewer Options For Hospital?
Not-for-profit hospitals cannot escape a weak economy, and the sector won't get through the next few years as easily as it did the Great Recession. That's essentially what analysts said last week in reports from two of the major ratings agencies (Melanie Evans, 8/20).
San Francisco Chronicle: State Needs To Protect Farmworkers
Protecting the agricultural bounty of the state, however, requires us to protect the health of the workers who harvest it. Two bills up for a vote in the state Senate over the next week would demand stricter rules and penalties in order to protect farmworkers from hazardous conditions. ... The Legislature needs to pass both of these bills and get the agriculture industry to take worker safety seriously (8/20).
WBUR: 'Distorted' Report On Hypertension Study May Decrease Patient Compliance
A recent news article on blood pressure medications and the elderly is stirring up controversy among cardiologists and physicians who treat older patients. The article, published in The New York Times earlier this month, analyzes a medical study in which researchers looked at the utility of a walking test to identify patients who may not benefit from anti-hypertensive therapy. But the Times piece misrepresents the study, in my opinion, and will likely exacerbate non-compliance for an already notorious problem: the undertreatment of high blood pressure (Dr. Daniel E. Forman, 8/21).
Bloomberg: U.S. Supports Circumcision Abroad, Should Do Same At Home
More and more states (18 so far) are dropping Medicaid coverage for routine infant male circumcision, contributing to a decline in rates from 79 percent throughout the 1970s to 55 percent in 2010. This has occurred even as evidence of the medical benefits of the procedure has stacked up. ... Of course, parents should not be coerced to circumcise their sons, but the procedure should at least be covered by insurance, including Medicaid, which pays for a third of circumcisions done in U.S. hospitals. When a procedure isn't covered, a layperson will often assume there's no medical benefit and forgo it (8/20).