Health News Roundup

CT immigrant advocacy group wants more resources for non-English speakers at hospitals, and more in this week’s roundup

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CT immigrant advocacy group wants more resources for non-English speakers at hospitals
Kay Perkins, Connecticut Public Radio, Oct. 6
The number of Connecticut residents over the age of five who speak a language other than English in the home is 22%, according to U.S. census data. Make the Road Connecticut recently launched an initiative advocating for better health care services for non-English speaking communities.

Maternity care ‘deserts’ on the rise across the U.S., report finds
Theresa Gaffney, STAT, Oct. 11
A maternity care desert is defined by the March of Dimes as any county without a hospital or birth center offering obstetric care and without any obstetric providers. A new report finds that over a third of all counties in the U.S. are designated as maternity care deserts, most of which are in rural areas. One of the driving factors for decreased access is a simple one that residents of rural areas have noticed for years: hospital closures.

New rule opens ObamaCare subsidies to more families seeking coverage
Nathaniel Weixel, The Hill, Oct. 11
Nearly 1 million additional Americans will have access to financial assistance for health coverage next year under a final rule issued by the Biden administration. The rule fixes the “family glitch,” a loophole in the Affordable Care Act that prevents family members from receiving subsidies if a household member has access to an affordable employer-sponsored health plan.

CT homeless population rises for first time in years
Ginny Monk, The Connecticut Mirror, Oct. 6
The number of people experiencing homelessness in Connecticut rose for the first time in nearly a decade, by about 13% from 2021 to 2022, according to a new report. The increase is likely because of continued economic fallout from the pandemic paired with inflation costs and a lack of housing, experts said.

Telemedicine was made easy during COVID-19. Not any more
Tom Murphy, The Associated Press, Oct. 9
The use of telemedicine rose astronomically after COVID-19 hit, but limits are returning for care delivered across state lines. Nearly 40 states and Washington D.C. have ended emergency declarations that made it easier for doctors to use video visits to see patients in another state. That complicates follow-up treatments for some cancer patients. It can also affect other types of care, including mental health therapy and routine check-ins.