Today’s NewsStand – August 3, 2018

Featuring hospital and health care headlines from the media and the Web.

Iowa News

Council Bluffs hospital honors cancer patients at Spirit of Courage gala
They are four people walking different paths, yet the recipients of the 2018 Spirit of Courage Award share the hope provided to all cancer patients in southwest Iowa by the medical professionals at the Methodist Jennie Edmundson Cancer Center. This year’s recipients will be honored by the Jennie Edmundson Foundation during its annual Spirit of Courage Celebrity Weekend this evening, Saturday and Sunday in Council Bluffs. Attendees at the Spirit of Courage fundraising dinner and auction will hear more of the award recipients’ stories. (Council Bluffs Daily Nonpareil)

How you can still help with tornado disaster relief in Iowa
Good Samaritans looking for ways to assist Iowans devastated by tornado damage in central Iowa can still help. Marshalltown is currently in recovery mode as residents try to recuperate and rebuild from the damage the tornado tore through town on July 19. Volunteers with the American Red Cross of Iowa are going door-to-door in Marshalltown to try and assess what people need right now, including undocumented immigrants who may have been afraid of asking for help before. In Pella, residents can donate to The Well, a non-profit organization, to help local residents. (Des Moines Register)

New Medicare cards on the way to Iowans
Iowans on Medicare should be seeing a new card showing up in their mailbox sometime soon. Julie Brookhart, a spokesperson for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, says the new cards will no longer use Social Security numbers to identify members. She says that’s the only thing that is different, as it does not change Medicare benefits. Brookhart says some of the more than 600,000 Iowans in the program may have already received the new cards and others will be arriving in the mail in the next couple of weeks. (Radio Iowa)

National News

Four US cities sue over Trump ‘sabotage’ of Obamacare
Four major US cities filed a lawsuit on Thursday contending that President Donald Trump’s administration is unconstitutionally seeking to undermine Obamacare by failing to faithfully execute the health care law. The complaint in federal court in Baltimore, filed by the cities of Baltimore, Chicago, Cincinnati and Columbus, Ohio, alleged that the Republican president is “waging a relentless campaign to sabotage and, ultimately, to nullify the law.” (Reuters)

Senate Dems to force vote to block non-Obamacare insurance plans
Top Senate Democrats said they are planning to force a vote on a measure that would overturn the Trump administration’s rule expanding access to cheap, controversial insurance plans. The resolution aims to overturn the Trump administration’s new rule that expands access to non-Obamacare insurance plans. Democrats attack the plans as “junk” insurance and say the move is part of the administration’s efforts to “sabotage” Obamacare. (The Hill)

Comprehensive health care must include mental substance abuse treatments
As the Trump administration, Congress and insurance companies debate various future health-care plans for the American people, it’s important to remember that comprehensive coverage must include mental health and substance abuse treatment. One of the biggest imperatives of mental health literacy is knowing that treatments have been developed and tested to successfully reduce the symptoms and disabilities of many mental illnesses. Access to and payment for these treatments should be included in any discussions of future health care coverage. (The Hill)

How providers are working to stem missed appointments
Patient no-shows are a costly, intractable headache for health care providers. Millions of patients cancel, skip or reschedule appointments with their clinicians every year, creating vacant schedules and expenses that can cost the industry by one estimate $150 billion annually. Stakeholders across the industry are engaging directly with Uber and Lyft following the companies’ high-profile entrances into the market. Trouble getting to a provider, however, is just one of many factors fueling missed appointments. (Healthcare Dive)