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Category Archives: Health Care

Opioid Addiction: Laws, Regulations, and Other Factors Can Affect Treatment Access

Opioid Addiction: Laws, Regulations, and Other Factors Can Affect Medication-Assisted Treatment Access, GAO-16-833: Published: Sep 27, 2016. Publicly Released: Oct 27, 2016.

“Overdoses of opioids such as heroin caused more than 28,000 deaths in the U.S. in 2014. Medication-assisted treatment (which combines medication with behavioral therapy) can reduce opioid addiction. We looked at factors that can affect patients’ access to medication-assisted treatment such as:

  • Federal laws: Laws are more restrictive when medications—e.g., methadone—are used to treat addiction rather than pain.
  • Practitioner availability: Qualified, registered practitioners may not be available.
  • Perception: This treatment is stigmatized and some practitioners are reluctant to use it.
  • Costs: Insurance coverage for treatment can be limited.”

The Global Gender Gap Report 2016

“The Global Gender Gap Index was first introduced by the World Economic Forum in 2006 as a framework for capturing the magnitude of gender-based disparities and tracking their progress over time. The Index benchmarks national gender gaps on economic, education, health and political criteria, and provides country rankings that allow for effective comparisons across regions… Continue Reading

Fracking Linked to Cancer-Causing Chemicals, New YSPH Study Funds

News release: “An expansive new analysis by Yale School of Public Health researchers confirms that numerous carcinogens involved in the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing have the potential to contaminate air and water in nearby communities. Fracking is now common in the United States, currently occurring in 30 states, and with millions of people living… Continue Reading

Breast Cancer Education: HHS Has Implemented Initiatives Aimed at Young Women

Breast Cancer Education: HHS Has Implemented Initiatives Aimed at Young Women, GAO-17-19: Published: Oct 20, 2016. Publicly Released: Oct 20, 2016. “Young women account for 11% of all new cases of breast cancer in the United States, tend to have worse outcomes than older women, and face unique issues in managing the disease. We looked… Continue Reading

Analyzing Hospice Care in the United States

Center for Data Innovation – “The U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has released a data set called the Hospice Utilization and Payment Public Use File (Hospice PUF) detailing the services of 4,015 hospice providers to Medicare subscribers in 2014. The Hospice PUF includes deidentified data on over $15 billion in Medicare payments… Continue Reading

Medicare Part D: A First Look At Prescription Drug Plans in 2017

Kaiser Family Foundation – “Current enrollees in stand-alone Medicare Part D plans are projected to face an average 9 percent increase in premiums if they remain in their current plan for 2017, according to an analysis released today by the Kaiser Family Foundation. During Medicare’s 2017 open enrollment period, which runs from Oct. 15 through… Continue Reading

Visualizing Health Policy: Intersection of State Abortion Policy and Clinical Practice

Via Kaiser: “This Visualizing Health Policy infographic examines state policies related to abortion and their intersection with clinical practice. Nine of 10 reported abortions in the United States are in the first trimester. Between 2003 and 2012, the abortion rate decreased 18% among women aged 15 to 44 years. Twenty-five states have laws that restrict… Continue Reading

Findings from the Global Burden of Disease Study

“The GBD 2015 study shows that, from 1990 to 2015, the world as a whole has been undergoing an epidemiological transition. The nature of that transition is discussed below in a brief overview of some key GBD 2015 results. Since the GBD 2015 study’s results consist of over 2 billion estimated data points, this report… Continue Reading

Paper – Influence of Pokémon Go on Physical Activity: Study and Implications

Via Microsoft/Stanford Research Study – “Physical activity helps people maintain a healthy weight and reduces the risk for several chronic diseases. Although this knowledge is widely recognized, adults and children in many countries around the world do not get recommended amounts of physical activity. While many interventions are found to be ineffective at increasing physical… Continue Reading

Paper – After Sandy Hook Elementary: A Year in the Gun Control Debate on Twitter

After Sandy Hook Elementary: A Year in the Gun Control Debate on Twitter – Presented at the Data For Good Exchange 2016. “The mass shooting at Sandy Hook elementary school on December 14, 2012 catalyzed a year of active debate and legislation on gun control in the United States. Social media hosted an active public discussion where people expressed their… Continue Reading

Report – Families Caring for an Aging America

National Academies: “At least 17.7 million individuals in the United States are providing care and support to an older parent, spouse, friend, or neighbor who needs help because of a limitation in their physical, mental, or cognitive functioning. The circumstances of individual caregivers are extremely varied. They may live with, nearby, or far away from the… Continue Reading

IAEA Database Highlights Global Disparity in Access to Cancer Care

“Most radiotherapy facilities in the world are located in high-income countries, and at least 36 nations do not have any such equipment to treat cancer. These are some conclusions drawn from data in the revamped Directory of Radiotherapy Centres (DIRAC), launched today on the margins of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) General Conference. With information from 141… Continue Reading