Longer Looks: Catholic Hospitals In Rural America; Sickle Cell Disease; And Free Narcan
Each week, KHN's Shefali Luthra finds interesting reads from around the Web.
How Catholic Bishops Are Shaping Health Care In Rural America
In a growing number of communities around the country, especially in rural areas, patients and physicians have access to just one hospital. And in more and more places, that hospital is Catholic. That sounds innocuous — a hospital is a hospital, after all. But Catholic hospitals are bound by a range of restrictions on care that are determined by religious authorities, with very little input from medical staff. (Anna Maria Barry-Jester and Amelia Thomson-DeVeaux, 7/25)
The Washington Post:
A Father, A Daughter And The Search For Answers In A Toxic Town
Even before Hassan Amjad’s family buried him on a West Virginia hillside, phone calls flooded his daughter’s office. The callers remembered him as a kind man, boundless in his curiosity, fiery in his convictions, who had long maintained a medical clinic in nearby Oak Hill, in an old whitewashed house with a squeaky screen door and creaking wood floors. But some of them also sounded worried. Ayne Amjad, a doctor like her father, heard the same questions again and again: Who will stand up for us now? Will we be forgotten? (Brady Dennis, 7/23)
The Realness: This Sunny Day Right Here
Prodigy and Havoc begin laying down rhymes together in high school. When their first album flops, they come up with a new sound that's directly influenced by P's sickle cell, and it helps define a generation of hip hop. Plus: Big Twins talks about the sickle cell attack he’ll never forget. Podcast. (7/19)
A Drug Company Tried To Give Away An Overdose Antidote To Schools. But Most Of Them Declined The Offer.
When offered free samples of the overdose-reversing drug Narcan, only about 1 in 14 high schools or colleges nationwide took advantage of the offer, the drug’s manufacturer reports. (Dan Vergano, 7/23)
Making Personalized Cancer Vaccines Takes An Army—Of Robots
When Melissa Moore was tinkering around with RNA in the early 90s, the young biochemist had to painstakingly construct the genetic molecules by micropipette, just a few building blocks at a time. Inside the MIT lab of Nobel laureate Phil Sharp, it could take days to make just a few drops of RNA, which ferries a cell’s genetic source code to its protein-making machinery. She didn’t imagine that nearly three decades later she’d leave academia to work for a company that cranks out the stuff 20 liters at a time. (Megan Molteni, 7/25)
Why Some Democrats Are Spooked By Medicare For All And A Jobs Guarantee
[Alexandra] Ocasio-Cortez’s campaign platform included a call for a federal jobs guarantee, under which the federal government would create millions of public sector positions so that anybody who wanted employment could get it. On health care, Ocasio-Cortez is an unabashed supporter of “Medicare for all,” which she, like many progressives, defines as creating a single government insurance program ― in other words, a true “single payer” system ― that would cover everybody and displace private insurance altogether. (Jonathan Cohn, 7/24)
The Medical Community Is Changing Its Mind On Chronic Fatigue Syndrome. Why Aren’t Insurers?
Brian Vastag was enjoying a life that many people would envy. At age 41, he had achieved professional success as an award-winning health and science reporter for the Washington Post, covering important stories from around the world. That came to an end in July 2012, when he found himself afflicted by a mysterious and poorly understood illness that ended up sweeping away almost every vestige of his vigorous and productive life. (Steven Lubet and David Tuller, 7/19)
The New York Times:
What The Mystery Of The Tick-Borne Meat Allergy Could Reveal
One spring evening in 2016, Lee Niegelsky’s underarm began to itch. An investment manager, he was doing housework around his condo, and he thought he’d been bitten by a chigger. But within 15 minutes, hives had erupted all over his body. He responded with what he calls a “typical man reaction” — if the hives didn’t clear up by the next day, he would have them checked. Fifteen minutes later, the itch had become unbearable. He needed help right away. (Moises Velasquez-Manoff, 7/24)