Health Policy News
February 9, 2016

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updated 1:01pm EST

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February 9, 2016

Veterans Affairs Health System Faces Significant Challenges, Studies Find

Feb. 8, 2016 — A series of reports prepared as part of a Congressionally mandated review of the Veterans Affairs (VA) health care system finds that demands on the VA will continue to increase through the end of the ... read more

Variation in Hospice Visits for Medicare Patients in Last Two Days of Life

Feb. 8, 2016 — Medicare patients in hospice care were less likely to be visited by professional staff in the last two days of life if they were black, dying on a Sunday or receiving care in a nursing home, ... read more

Study Evaluates Pay-for-Performance Program for Medicaid Children in an ACO

Feb. 5, 2016 — The first pay-for-performance (P4P) evaluation of pediatricians under a full-risk Medicaid accountable care organization (ACO) for children shows P4P incentives were partially responsible for higher ... read more

Study Measures Impact of Removing Planned Parenthood from Texas Women's Health Program

Feb. 4, 2016 — The public defunding of Planned Parenthood in Texas may have led to a decrease in highly effective forms of contraceptive services and an increase in Medicaid-paid childbirths among women who ... read more

Extending Length of Surgical Trainees' Shifts Does Not Affect Surgical Patients' Safety

Feb. 2, 2016 — Allowing surgeons in training, otherwise known as residents, the flexibility to work longer shifts than currently allowed in the US and/or take less time off between shifts to provide continuity of ... read more

Rate of Office Visits, Cumulative Costs Prior to Colonoscopies for Colon Cancer Screening

Feb. 2, 2016 — Researchers analyzed billing data to determine the proportion of colonoscopies for colon cancer screening and polyp surveillance that were preceded by office visits and the associated payments for ... read more

Feb. 1, 2016 — New work on how news media coverage shapes perceptions of obesity, has been published by investigators. They examined how perspectives on obesity portrayed in news articles affect people's ... read more

Most Vaccine-Related Posts on Pinterest Are Anti-Vaccine, Reveals Research

Feb. 1, 2016 — 75 percent of the vaccine-related posts on Pinterest are negative towards vaccination, according to new ... read more

Teen Suicide: ADHD Medication as Prevention

Feb. 1, 2016 — Black-box warnings about the dangers of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) medications are confusing and could have serious consequences for the risk of youth suicide, according to ... read more

Awareness of Aspirin's Benefits Saves Lives

Jan. 29, 2016 — A new study has found that the University of Minnesota's "Ask About Aspirin" initiative, a statewide public health campaign, is likely a beneficial and cost-effective way to reduce the ... read more

United States Has Greater Link Between Low Birth Weight, Inequality, Study Shows

Jan. 29, 2016 — New research found that while low birth weight was linked to lower income and education levels in four comparable countries, that connection was most persistent in the United ... read more

Most Uninsured Texans Say Cost of Health Insurance Too High

Jan. 29, 2016 — Almost 70 percent of uninsured Texans said the high cost of health insurance is the reason they remain uninsured, according to a new report. The report found less than 20 percent of uninsured Texans ... read more

Impact of Opioid Risk Reduction Initiatives Assessed

Jan. 28, 2016 — New research on opioid prescribing in Washington State reports that a health plan initiative to change shared expectations of physicians regarding clinically appropriate drug levels for long-term ... read more

Maya Healers' Conception of Cancer May Help Bridge Gap in Multicultural Settings Care

Jan. 28, 2016 — Understanding and integrating patients’ cultural beliefs into cancer treatment plans may help improve their acceptance of and adherence to treatment in multicultural settings. Researchers examined ... read more

Treating Major Depression in Older Adults With Diabetes May Lower Risk of Death

Jan. 27, 2016 — Effective treatment for depression could go a long way toward improving health status and even preventing death among older adults who also have diabetes, according to a new ... read more

Emerging Zika Pandemic Requires More WHO Action Now, Experts Say

Jan. 27, 2016 — The World Health Organization's Director-General should convene 'urgently' a meeting of International Health Regulations' Emergency Committee to advise on the emerging Zika ... read more

Child Abuse Exposure, Suicidal Ideation in Canadian Military, General Population

Jan. 27, 2016 — Military personnel in Canada were more likely to have had exposure to child abuse than individuals in the general population and that exposure was associated with an increased risk of suicidal ... read more

On Twitter, E-Cigarette Ads Spread Like Secondhand Smoke

Jan. 26, 2016 — Are 500 retweets the modern equivalent of 'everyone's doing it' when it comes to e-cigarette marketing? While the Food and Drug Administration has proposed a ban on the sales of ... read more

Billing Code Invalid Measure to Identify Nurse Anesthetist Stand-Alone Practice

Jan. 25, 2016 — Nurse anesthetists often receive guidance from physician anesthesiologists, yet bill their time as if they are making decisions alone, according to a recent study of more than 9,000 ... read more

Private Water Wells Linked to Illness

Jan. 25, 2016 — New Canadian research could be helpful in illuminating a previously unclear relationship between private water wells in Canada and an acute stomach bug -- findings that could have implications in ... read more

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