KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

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Hospice Workers Face History Of Neglect In Trying To Overcome African-American Distrust

Stat looks at efforts to tackle the issue of minority access to hospice care as a matter of social justice. In related news stories, former Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius urges doctors to allow patients to drive end-of-life care decisions while researchers study how diet might help ward off Alzheimer's.

Stat: Against A History Of Medical Mistreatment, African-Americans Are Distrustful Of Hospice Care
Medical researchers who are working to unpack the issue view minority access to hospice care as a matter of social justice. It’s typically paid for by the government, can reduce patient suffering, and relieve family members of the burdens of caring for a dying loved one. Why should African-Americans continue to suffer more at life’s end than others? There’s a lot to sift through, starting with the medical industry’s long and at times ugly history of neglect and abuse of blacks. Doctors can also fail to account for the pervasive belief among many African-American faithful that God has an ability to heal the sick through miracles. (Tedeschi, 4/5)

Kansas City Star: Sebelius Speaks On End-Of-Life Care At Center For Practical Bioethics Dinner 
Former Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius said doctors and government should back off and let patients drive end-of-life care decisions at the Center for Practical Bioethics’ annual dinner Wednesday at the Kansas City Marriott Downtown. Sebelius said she tried to encourage that approach in 2009 as secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services under President Barack Obama by proposing a reimbursement for discussing end-of-life decisions with patients under the Affordable Care Act. (Marso, 4/5)

Kaiser Health News: To Help Ward Off Alzheimer’s, Think Before You Eat
Diets designed to boost brain health, targeted largely at older adults, are a new, noteworthy development in the field of nutrition. The latest version is the Canadian Brain Health Food Guide, created by scientists in Toronto. Another, the MIND diet, comes from experts at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago and Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. (Graham, 4/6)

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