Amid an ongoing crackdown on overprescribing doctors in Appalachia announced in October, patient advocates have been increasingly concerned for pain patients and those abusing prescription drugs. Being suddenly cut off from medications they depend on can be dangerous. Patients could become so desperate from withdrawal symptoms that they may resort to street drugs and could overdose.Learn More
Many Iowa counties are among the healthiest communities in the United States, according to new nationwide listings. The 2019 Healthiest Communities Rankings, an annual list compiled by U.S. News & World Report and the Aetna Foundation, measured counties in Iowa and other states on several health-related metrics, such as obesity and smoking rates as well as infrastructure and access to recreational spaces. Ida County, located in west central Iowa between Sioux City and Fort Dodge, was ranked as the nation’s most improved healthiest community.
A move in more than a dozen states to impose work requirements as a condition of Medicaid coverage could not only result in people losing health insurance, but could also impact hospitals’ revenue, increase uncompensated care costs and have a detrimental economic effect on local communities, according to a new Commonwealth Fund report. Rural hospitals could be especially hard hit, the report noted.Learn More
All patients should be confident as they count on their hospital to be their lifeline to access care in their community. And all communities should be able to look to their hospitals as stable hubs for both health care and economic growth. Funding cuts proposed in the White House budget undermine that confidence as they threaten the viability of hospital care.
By introducing Senate Study Bill 1197 and House Study Bill 206, Gov. Kim Reynolds offered Iowa the opportunity to establish the governance structure to implement core mental health services for children and families uniformly across Iowa. After decades of discussion and growing public support, these two bills take a huge step toward establishing a children’s mental health system.Learn More
In a practice that policy experts say smothers competition and keeps prices high, drug companies routinely make hidden pacts with middlemen that effectively block patients from getting cheaper generic medicines. Such agreements “make it difficult for generics to compete or know what they’re competing against,” said Stacie Dusetzina, an associate professor of health policy at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine.