February 17, 2014 |
It was just past 9:30 a.m. Tuesday and all the screens in Bonnell Hall's BG 25 computer lab at Community College of Philadelphia were alight with the blue-hued healthcare.gov home page. But the only people in the room for the scheduled Affordable Care Act workshop were Health Federation of Philadelphia certified application counselors Daniel Flynn and Gracie Chang, and navigator Hannah Sendolo. Where were the students? OK, it was early by college standards, and so cold that ducks were wearing goose down.
February 12, 2014
Merited lawyering The political pandering over the nomination of Debo Adegbile to lead the Justice Department's Civil Rights Division is tiring. Adegbile's critics complain that he argued that there was racial discrimination at work in jury selection for Mumia Abu-Jamal's trial. The federal court briefs in the case show that the prosecutor struck African American prospective jurors at 3.6 times the rate that he struck whites, and that the odds of a black person's being struck by the prosecutor was 10 times higher than that of someone who was white.
February 9, 2014 |
Since 2011, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and Virtua, the biggest health system in South Jersey, have been partners in pediatric care. The partnership started with Children's doctors providing services at Virtua hospitals in Voorhees and Mount Holly. Children's opened a specialty care center in June 2012 next to the new Virtua hospital in Voorhees. In the year ended June 30, children had 33,133 encounters with Children's Hospital physicians - an average of 91 a day - at Virtua locations, Children's Hospital chief executive Steven M. Altschuler said Friday at a meeting of the Chamber of Commerce of Southern New Jersey.
February 5, 2014 |
Independence Blue Cross said Monday that it would invest up to $50 million in health-related venture funds and individual start-up companies that could help the region's largest health insurer improve quality and reduce the cost of health care. The time frame for the investments by the Strategic Innovation Portfolio has not been determined, but IBC chief executive Daniel J. Hilferty estimated that it would be five to seven years. The investment fund is a new element in a multipronged effort - now consolidated in what is called the IBC Center for Health Care Innovation - to turn the Philadelphia region into what Hilferty called "the national magnet" for companies developing technologies that could improve health care.
February 3, 2014 |
Four months ago, the healthcare.gov website wasn't looking so dandy to Ted Trevorrow. The insurance veteran and freshly certified Affordable Care Act navigator was shaken by the exchange's disastrous rollout and the cascade of Web errors that followed. "It took some luster off the ACA," said Trevorrow, speaking at Resources for Human Development's office in Roxborough. But these days much of that luster has returned to the site's bronze, silver, gold, and platinum plans. The website has rallied.
February 2, 2014 |
Since the 1960s, the number of people dying from heart disease has fallen steadily in the United States. But heart disease is still responsible for a quarter of all deaths, and remains the leading cause of mortality for both men and women. Innovations in care and more insight into risk factors has helped lessen its damaging impact. One insight is that many people can control their risk. Most heart disease is preventable, but "we don't pay attention to that disease process" until it's too advanced, said Daniel Edmundowicz, medical director of the Temple Heart and Vascular Institute in North Philadelphia.
January 31, 2014 |
Promising to restore a North Philadelphia neighborhood known for dilapidated buildings and a lack of medical resources, city and state officials helped break ground Wednesday on a $15 million health-care facility near the Strawberry Mansion area. The Stephen Klein Wellness Center, named for the developer, is expected to offer primary care, dental, and behavioral health services - as well as 50 job openings - when it opens near 21st Street and Cecil B. Moore Avenue. More than 100 people jammed inside a heated tent Wednesday for the ceremony.
January 12, 2014 |
What's good for some can be bad for others, and that maxim was demonstrated again last week with the release of the annual National Health Expenditures analysis. Though America spent just shy of $2.8 trillion in 2012 on health-care spending, the rate of growth was essentially flat, continuing a four-year trend, according to the study by the federal government's Office of the Actuary, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, published in the journal Health Affairs. That is the longest period of slow or no growth in the 53-year history of the analysis.
January 12, 2014 |
Buying prescription drugs overseas is back on the national agenda. Maine recently allowed residents to buy drugs from pharmacies in Canada, England, New Zealand, and Australia, triggering a lawsuit from the pharmaceutical industry. And a bill introduced last month in Congress would let people buy drugs from countries with safety rules similar to our own. Prescription drug prices here are generally higher than anywhere else in the world. While it is technically illegal for U.S. citizens to import drugs manufactured here and exported, it is a fact of today's world.