Health News Roundup

Week of September 18, 2017

Health Equity

‘Every time it’s a battle’: In excruciating pain, sickle cell patients are shunted aside
Sharon Begley, STAT, September 18
The U.S. health care system is killing adults with sickle cell disease. Racism is a factor — most of the 100,000 U.S. patients with the genetic disorder are African-American — and so is inadequate training of doctors and nurses. And the care is getting worse, sickle cell patients and their doctors said, because the opioid addiction crisis has made ER doctors extremely reluctant to prescribe pain pills.

Health Reform

After single payer failed, Vermont embarks on a big health care experiment
Carolyn Y. Johnson, The Washington Post, September 17
The underlying premise is simple: Reward doctors and hospitals financially when patients are healthy, not just when they come in sick.

Fact check: Sen. Cassidy’s rebuttal to Jimmy Kimmel: ‘More people will have coverage’
Glenn Kessler, The Washington Post, September 21
Jimmy Kimmel’s back-and-forth with Bill Cassidy captures the confusion and rhetoric around the proposed health care bill. The health policy debate is more complicated than the soundbites from both sides may convey. This article digs through the claims, attempting to separate fact from fiction.

First Person

Why one med school embraces DACA students
Sahand Ghodrati, Scientific American, September 18
One thing most Americans can agree on, even in 2017, is that our health care system has plenty of room for improvement. The dramatic shortage of providers in underserved communities is one area of focus. To respond to this shortage, and to simultaneously address historic inequities that have led to underrepresentation of minority groups, medical schools have shifted toward mission-based admissions initiatives that weigh more than mere GPA and standardized test scores.

From the Foundation

What the Senate health care proposal means for Connecticut
Patricia Baker, Connecticut Health Foundation, September 20
Under the Graham-Cassidy health care amendment being considered by the U.S. Senate, Connecticut would be hit especially hard, according to multiple analyses. Funding cuts in the proposal would leave the state with substantially less money to provide health care coverage to low-income children and adults and people with disabilities.