Today’s NewsStand – December 3, 2018

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

Iowa News

State Auditor-elect Rob Sand weighs in on Mosiman’s Medicaid report
The debate continues over Iowa’s Medicaid program. A report released by State Auditor Mary Mosiman on Monday says the state has saved about $141-million dollars through the privatization of Medicaid.  But State Auditor-elect, Rob Sand, says he’s not so sure. Sand says the just-released audit failed to look into key factors. Sand says he’s also concerned as to where the savings are going as health care providers, like mental health institutes, struggle to keep their doors open. (KWWL)

What happens when Iowa schools prioritize behavioral health
For decades, public schools have applied a one-size fits all approach to teaching and disciplining students, a strategy that research shows can cause at-risk students to drop out or get trapped in the criminal system. The realization that these policies aren’t working, coupled with the rise in children with emotional needs and a spike in anxiety, depression and teenage suicides, is leading educators to rethink their role and how to foster learning environments that also address students’ emotional and behavioral needs. (Ames Tribune)

Medical marijuana patients could face hurdles at school, at work and at gun shops
Erin Bollman is thrilled that Iowa will finally let her legally purchase marijuana-derived oil for her disabled son, Abram Miller. But she’s disappointed his school’s nurse can’t help him take it. The problem is that although Iowa legislators declared the new oils, creams and capsules legal to treat certain medical conditions, the federal government still considers them illegal marijuana products. (Des Moines Register)

A new face to lead Floyd Valley Healthcare into the future
A new chapter unfolds for Floyd Valley Heathcare as they welcome Dustin Wright as its new CEO. While his first day isn’t until December 10, the new addition is already hard at work getting to know the community hospital. Having grown up in Primghar, the opportunity to return to northwest Iowa was something Wright had always hoped for, so when he heard about the open position, he quickly threw his hat in the ring for consideration. (Le Mars Daily Sentinel)

National News

Welcome initiatives can help address mental health needs in the Midlands
It’s encouraging to see a growing consensus among Americans about the need for greater action to address the nation’s mental health challenges. Public awareness is growing that schools should step up their efforts to provide young people with needed supports. Behavioral health officials emphasize that mental health issues are by no means limited to urban residents; states need mental health supports for both rural and urban communities. Three recent announcements offer positive news on the mental health issue for Nebraska. (Omaha World-Herald)

How’s your mental health? Ending the suicide epidemic begins by caring for ourselves.
The number of lives lost to suicide is shocking and the impact on survivors is devastating. Indeed, friends and family of those who take their lives often struggle for years trying to make sense of the loss — sometimes blaming themselves for not saving their loved one. In order to do more, we have to recognize a few realities. There simply aren’t enough trained professionals to address the mental health crisis we are facing. (USA Today)

Why hospitals should let you sleep
If part of a hospital stay is to recover from a procedure or illness, why is it so hard to get any rest? There is more noise and light than is conducive for sleep. And nurses and others visit frequently to give medications, take vitals, draw blood or perform tests and checkups — in many cases waking patients to do so. “Instead, we could make the environment more conducive to rest and reduce the use of sedatives,” Dr. Ubel, a physician with Duke University, said. (New York Times)

CMS has a plan if federal judge strikes down ACA
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has a plan to protect pre-existing conditions and Americans’ access to care even if a federal judge overturns the Affordable Care Act (ACA), CMS Adminstrator Seema Verma said Tuesday. A slew of Republican state attorneys general have challenged the constitutionality of President Barack Obama’s signature health care reform law and that lawsuit may be decided any day. (Modern Healthcare)