- California Healthline Original Stories 2
- In For A Shock: Exchange Customers Get Glimpse Of Painful Rate Hikes
- California Won’t Extend Parental Leave Rights To Small Businesses
- Public Health and Education 1
- Genetic Testing Doesn't Always Hold The Answers To A Sudden, Unexpected Death
Latest From California Healthline:
Covered California customers can finally get the details on their 2017 premium increases and begin shopping for alternatives. (Emily Bazar, 10/7)
Gov. Jerry Brown vetoes a bill that would have guaranteed employees of small businesses can keep their jobs if they take parental leave to bond with a new child. (Michelle Andrews, 10/12)
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Summaries Of The News:
However opponents in the adult film industry say it is "a harmful law couched in rescue rhetoric that stands to benefit one man at the expense of the entire state and the population it’s intended to protect."
LA Daily News:
Prop. 60 Puts Condoms On Porn Actors, But Critics Say It’s A Barrier To Business
On one side of the debate of Proposition 60 stands an AIDS advocacy organization that says a statewide law is needed to keep adult film performers safe from sexually transmitted diseases.On the other side are the adult film performers themselves. They say such a law will endanger their livelihood. (Abram, 10/11)
In other ballot news —
Santa Rosa Press Democrat:
Gavin Newsom, Prop. 64 Proponent, Makes His Case For Legalizing Pot
California Lt. Gov. Gavin Newsom might seem an unlikely choice to be campaigning for marijuana legalization, given that he doesn’t like pot and says he’s never tried it. (Mason, 10/11)
DaVinci Biosciences is a medical research company that focuses on spinal and sports injuries and degenerative diseases, while DV Biologics supplies human tissue to other research facilities.
Orange County Register:
O.C. District Attorney Claims 2 Medical Research Firms Are Selling Fetal Tissue For Profit
The Orange County District Attorney’s Office is suing two related Yorba Linda-based medical companies, claiming they’re illegally profiting off the sale of fetal tissue donated from abortion providers. The lawsuit filed in Orange County Superior Court late Tuesday alleges that DaVinci Biosciences and its sister company DV Biologics advertised and sold hundreds of units of fetal tissue and stem cells to research facilities around the world, collecting tens of thousands of dollars in revenue. District Attorney Tony Rackauckas is expected to hold a news conference Wednesday to discuss the lawsuit. (Puente, 10/11)
KPCC takes a look at both the troubled history of the Adelanto Detention Facility and the changes its made in the past few years.
Have Changes At Adelanto Immigrant Detention Center Led To Better Health Care?
ICE has relied increasingly on private contractors to hold a detainee population that has exploded over the past two decades as immigration rules have tightened. ICE officials say they don’t have the capacity to handle so many detainees themselves. In recent months, private facilities have drawn increasing attention, first from California state lawmakers, and more recently the federal Department of Homeland Security, which holds roughly 33,000 immigrants in detention on a daily basis. There have been a series of problems over the years in ICE detention centers, including lawsuits tied to issues like overcrowding and medical negligence. (Berenstein Rojas, 10/12)
Inside The Adelanto Detention Facility: Troubled History, Vows For Reform
California's largest privately run immigrant detention facility – and a key holding site for immigrants from Southern California – has recorded lapses in care during a four-year period when at least three detainees have died, according to documents obtained by KPCC and interviews with former detainees and their families... Upon arriving in Adelanto, [Carlos] Hidalgo said he faced multiple challenges, including access to legal materials, long wait times for medical care and the psychological stress of being far away from his children and parents. He also said the food was of poor quality and left him constantly hungry. (Merina, 10/11)
In only 16 percent of cases could scientists definitively pinpoint a "likely" genetic explanation for the death.
KPBS Public Media:
Genetic Testing Can Explain Some Sudden Deaths (But Not All)
In a new study, San Diego scientists show that genetic testing can often give families answers when a loved one suddenly dies. But sometimes the answers provided by these "molecular autopsies" lead to new questions. And in many cases, unexplained deaths can't be linked with DNA at all. ... The goal was to pinpoint genetic mutations that could have caused the death, and to give that information back to surviving family members who may also carry the potentially lethal mutation. (Wagner, 10/11)
The clinics are in six districts in Contra Costa County and serve 24 middle and high schools.
East Bay Times:
School Health Buses Offer Physicals, Shots, Condoms And Advice
With the arrival of a mobile health clinic this year, students at Freedom and Liberty high schools now have easier access to medical services, such as physicals and sports clearances, immunizations and reproductive health care, and are taking advantage of the access. “It’s been great. It’s been very successful,” Kelly Manke, principal at Freedom High School, said. “We have a system in place where students who wish to visit the clinic fill out a little form and we have a box in one of our building offices. They put their information down and what they want to talk to them about.” The service is an extension of Contra Costa Health Services’ school-based clinics that have been around for the past 20 years. However, the buses have recently come to Freedom on Tuesdays and Liberty High School on Thursdays this year, and the demand for services is up. (Davis, 10/11)
In other news from across the state —
KPBS Public Media:
Rady Children's Hospital Doctors Urge Flu Vaccine
The peak of San Diego’s flu season is likely still weeks away, but health officials at Rady Children’s Hospital are urging everyone 6 months and older to get vaccinated now, especially those with chronic conditions such as heart and lung disease... Rady's is offering a flu vaccine clinic for those 18 years and younger. The clinic, located on the third floor at 3030 Children’s Way, is open from 9 a.m. to noon, and 12:30 p.m. to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. (Murphy, 10/11)
It's not just consumers who are suffering from the price spikes on drugs. Hospitals are struggling to adjust to unexpected hikes as well, according to a new survey.
The Associated Press:
Hospital Industry Says It, Too, Is Slammed By Drug Costs
Consumer groups and insurers were already complaining loudly about drug costs. Now hospitals are turning up the volume as well, leaving the pharmaceutical industry more politically isolated. (10/11)
In other national health care news —
The Wall Street Journal:
Employers Shift Higher Health-Care Costs To Workers
Open enrollment season is under way, and when workers get their health-plan information, many of them can expect higher out-of-pocket costs. As employers cope with rising health costs, some are shifting more of the burden onto their workers, often in the form of health insurance plans that carry high deductibles. To help rein in expenses, businesses also will ask their employees to take part in cost-cutting drug programs and use new services that provide Skype-like video consultations with doctors, according to several studies tracking employer health care. (Silverman, 10/11)
Two Years Later, Few Hobby Lobby Copycats Emerge
Obamacare supporters warned two years ago that if the Supreme Court allowed the owners of Hobby Lobby craft stores to eliminate birth control coverage because of their religious beliefs, others would rush to follow — and not just to eliminate contraceptives, but also, potentially, treatments like blood transfusions and vaccines. Those fears haven’t been borne out. (Haberkorn, 10/11)
The Washington Post Fact Checker:
‘Whole Bunch’ Of Facts Don’t Support Obama’s Claim That Many VA Bosses Were Fired Over Scandal
The Obama administration seems set on misleading the public about the number of people held accountable for the wait-time scandal at the Department of Veterans Affairs. VA Secretary Robert McDonald has twice received Four Pinocchio rulings for claims about how many people his agency fired or proposed disciplinary action against. (Lee, 10/12)
The Wall Street Journal:
IBM Offering U.S. Employees Watson Technology To Identify Cancer Treatments
Navigating the labyrinth of cancer treatments can be so disorienting for patients that International Business Machines Corp. is enlisting its powerful supercomputer Watson to help. The computing giant today says it will offer its Watson artificial intelligence software to its U.S. employees to help them identify appropriate treatments and options for clinical trials. The benefit will be available beginning early next year to employees and their families who are covered under several of the company’s insurance plans. (Silverman, 10/11)
The Washington Post:
Cautionary Tale Of 4-Year-Old Autistic Boy Rushed To ER After Treatment With Supplements
If you search for the words “autism” and “treatment” online, you'll find all kinds of suggestions outside of accepted medical practice for how to try to minimize or even cure the symptoms. Some of those ideas can be dangerous. Doctors recently described what happened to a 4-year-old boy who showed up in the emergency room after having been sick for three weeks. He was throwing up, had lost his appetite, was constipated and extremely thirsty, and had lost more than 6.5 pounds in two weeks. (Cha, 10/11)