KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Longer Looks: Gunshot Season For Surgeons; Hispanic Teen Suicide

Every week reporter Ankita Rao selects interesting reading from around the Web.

Los Angeles Times: Surgeon Races To Save A Life In L.A.'s Shooting Season
From the entry wound -- the size of a nickel -- Dr. Brant Putnam guesses that the bullet is a .45, but it's what he can't see that worries him most. The boy, a teenager most likely, lies naked on Bed 2 in a trauma bay at Harbor-UCLA Medical Center. …The season of shootings has begun on time. Last year, from July through September, this Torrance hospital treated 107 gunshot victims, the highest number in the county. This year, four GSWs -- medical shorthand for gunshot wounds -- arrived on the first day of summer. One was a suicide and three were assaults. Three died and one would probably be discharged in a few days. Now, on June 23, two more have come in, both teenagers, both assaults. They walked through the front door at 2:25 a.m., no EMTs, no police. The hospital staff calls it the homeboy ambulance service: patients brought in with injuries often from gang shootings (Thomas Curwen, 8/18).

Forbes: Say Hi To Oscar: The New Kid That May Change Health Insurance
In five weeks from now, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act mandates the opening of health insurance exchanges around the country. At that time New Yorkers will be introduced to an innovative way of thinking about health care: Oscar. Three friends, and technology entrepreneurs, teamed up to do something that has been inconceivable to date -- create a start-up health insurance company to take on conventional health insurers on the NY exchange (Nicole Fisher and Scott Liebman, 8/19).

Al Jazeera America: Suicides Highlight Plight Of Hispanic Teens
The manic depression that gripped Christine Ruiz had grown so acute by the time she reached high school that she was suicidal. … Ruiz's story offers insights into why Hispanic teenagers have one of the highest teen suicide rates in the United States. According to a 2012 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 13.5 percent of Hispanic female students in grades 9 through 12 admitted attempting suicide -- a percentage that is significantly higher than among their black (8.8 percent) and non-Hispanic (7.9 percent) peers. And a 2011 CDC report found that Manhattan had the highest rate -- 17 percent -- of Latina high school students who had seriously considered suicide (Erika L. Sanchez, 8/16).

The Atlantic: Thinking About Pregnancy Like An Economist
In the fall of 2009 my husband, Jesse, and I decided to have a baby. We were both economics professors at the University of Chicago. We'd been together since my junior year of college and married almost five years. Jesse was close to getting tenure, and my work was going pretty well. My 30th birthday was around the corner. We'd always talked about having a family, and the discussion got steadily more serious. … I'd always worried that being pregnant would affect my work--people tell all kinds of stories about "pregnancy brain," and missing weeks (or months) of work for morning sickness. As it happens, I was lucky and it didn't seem to make much difference (actually having the baby was another story). But what I didn't expect at all is how much I would put the tools of my job as an economist to use during my pregnancy (Emily Oster, 8/21).

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