Latest Morning Briefing Stories
Editorial pages offer opinions on “Medicare For All,” the health law, mental illness, aging, and other health topics.
For example, a 63-year-old transgender woman wonders if she would be accepted at a long-term care center. Would she have to hide who she is and go back into the closet “to get the care I deserve to get?” In other news on aging, predicting Alzheimer’s, knee replacement surgery and staying active in the later years.
Dr. David Sable talks with Stat about the new developments in the field. In other public health news: sex education, the flu, DNA, snakebites, scooters, autism, traveling nurses and more.
Missing closed captioning and other gaps for emergency communications can cut off Americans who are deaf from getting the news on life-threatening situations. Meanwhile, Florida hospitals are still recovering from Hurricane Michael.
The investigation by the HHS inspector general raises some concerns just as Medicare Advantage plans become more and more popular. Analysts predict that one in two seniors will have them in a few years despite predictions that the health law would hobble the marketplace.
For example, a manic episode may be preceded by rising numbers of typos and faster typing. But a host of privacy issues comes along with the technology. In other public health news: air pollution, stem cells, older patients, vision loss, dementia, anxiety and more.
One of the main health care promises featured in Republican campaign ads this cycle is that theirs is the party that will protect Medicare as it is — even though entitlement program changes have long been desired by GOP leadership. News about the midterm elections comes out of Tennessee, Maine, Texas, California and Ohio, as well.
Some residents are being treated with “ultrahigh intensity” rehab in their last week of life, which has experts looking at who is benefiting from that decision. Meanwhile, CMS aims to increase its enforcement actions of nursing home staff in cases of elder abuse. Nursing home and elder care news comes out of Kansas and Florida, as well.
Media outlets report on news from California, North Carolina, Colorado, Michigan, Oregon, Kentucky, Florida, Maryland, Arizona, New Hampshire, Texas and Minnesota.
While doing your job, your brain faces daily memory, processing and multi-tasking challenges that keep its cognitive functions sharp. Meanwhile, being diagnosed with dementia does not mean patients can’t have an active life.
Open enrollment for Medicare and prescription drug plans will begin Oct. 15 for coverage in 2019 and close Dec. 7. One change this year is that seniors can try a Medicare Advantage plan for up to three months and if they don’t like it, they can switch to another Advantage plan or enroll in traditional Medicare.
“I think it’s a breakthrough,” Clifford Rosen, an endocrinologist and physician, said of the study. While researchers have known that older women with osteoporosis benefit from drugs called bisphosphonates, this study supports their value for younger women with less brittle bones. Some, however, remain cautious. In other news on aging, two big studies focus on Alzheimer’s prevention.
A Cornell University food researcher’s discredited work is symptomatic of a pervasive problem with food and health studies, according to a group of scientists, who say part of the problem stems from the need to publish often. In other public health news, there are reports on flu, twins, pregnancy, nursing homes, living donors, teen girls, anxiety, vaping and more.
Researchers were expecting it to prevent heart attacks and strokes in patients, but taking a daily dose may actually cause more harm than good.
Unlike nurses — or even hairdressers or manicurists — home aides don’t need a state license in Massachusetts, which can leave those in need vulnerable to crime.
Experts give tips on what aging and infirm residents who decide to stay in their homes can do to prepare for worst-case scenarios. Residents on the coast of the Carolinas are facing hurricane winds and rain as Florence makes landfall.
None of the residents died or were injured in the fire, but the state’s Department of Social Services accused the staff of being unprepared and leaving before everyone was taken to safety. Nursing homes news comes out of North Carolina, Colorado, Wisconsin, New Hampshire and Tennessee, as well.
Synthetic biologists reached a milestone with an experiment to use bacteria to help patients with a condition that causes them to have to avoid dietary protein in foods such as meat and cheese. The concoction that the volunteers drank could become the first synthetic biology-based medical treatment to gain approval by the FDA. In other public health news: vaping, maternal mortality, CRISPR, pollution, stretching, vitamins, chronic diseases and more.
As suicide rates rise among the elderly, some health care providers think that even though it’s difficult to do so, it’s valid to discuss the topic and help those who think there are fates worse than death. In other news on aging: muscle loss and loss of independence, bereavement time for long-term care workers, malnutrition, dementia, and more.
The cognitive impact was most pronounced among older men, a troubling sign for how it relates to Alzheimer’s and dementia. Meanwhile, the Pacific Northwest is being smothered by smog from wildfires in both California and British Columbia.