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NEWS
June 22, 2014 | By Robert Calandra, For The Inquirer
Six months into the Affordable Care Act, local mental-health and substance-abuse professionals have yet to see an uptick in clients using their new benefits. The seeming lack of interest has been disappointing for caregivers, but is not completely unexpected. "It's very early," said Patricia Kleven, director of outpatient mental health services at the Belmont Center for Comprehensive Treatment. "I don't know what it will look like in six months or a year. But at the moment, not so much.
NEWS
June 21, 2014 | By Stacey Burling, Inquirer Staff Writer
After years of losing millions of dollars on its outpatient mental health program in Willow Grove, Abington Health is making big changes. It is sending notices this week to 2,200 patients who use its Creekwood Center that the program will close Dec. 1. About one-third will be routed to primary care offices in the system, where they will be treated by new, integrated teams of doctors and social workers. The rest, including 680 patients who received care through a contract with Montgomery County, must find new providers.
NEWS
June 15, 2014 | By Joan Capuzzi, V.M.D., For The Inquirer
Tajiri came to Philadelphia from her Wisconsin birthplace a robust young lioness. But her health was short-lived. Just shy of two years old when she arrived, the playful cat had sailed through her pre-shipment medical clearance, as well as her one-month health quarantine at the Philadelphia Zoo. There, she was observed closely and screened for everything from parasites to feline viruses before being placed in the zoo's Big Cat Falls exhibit....
NEWS
June 3, 2014 | By Angelo Fichera, Inquirer Staff Writer
A state study conducted in the aftermath of the 2012 train derailment in Paulsboro found that more than half of those interviewed reported new or intensified health issues in the days after the accident. Most commonly, residents noted experiencing headaches, respiratory symptoms, and coughing in the week after the Nov. 30 accident, according to the Department of Health report, based on two surveys. In its findings, 58 percent of those interviewed in person and 66 percent of those responding to a mail-in survey said they experienced "new or worsening symptoms" in the week after the derailment, which leaked about 20,000 gallons of toxic vinyl chloride into the atmosphere.
NEWS
May 29, 2014
EVERY ONCE in a while you get a chance to meet two needs with one action. I won't say kill two birds with one stone. This isn't about throwing stones or killing anything - just the opposite. It's about changing public policy to enhance, maybe even to save, lives; and by doing so, possibly providing a political boost to a politician who could use one. First, the policy: Community health centers for poor folks in Philly and across Pennsylvania are hurting. They're losing money big time, according to a new study by George Washington University: $29 million in Pennsylvania this year, half or more of that in Philly.
NEWS
May 29, 2014 | By Kristin E. Holmes, Inquirer Staff Writer
CNN, NPR, and CBS have grilled Scott Charles about the youth violence-prevention program he cofounded at Temple University Hospital. A group of middle-school journalists? No problem. Then the team of reporters from Healthy NewsWorks asked Charles, a trauma outreach coordinator at Temple, how he feels when he must counsel victims of the gun violence his program warns young people about. "I thought, 'Are you kids trying to make me cry?' " said Charles, 47, cofounder of the Cradle to Grave initiative.
NEWS
May 13, 2014 | BY JOHN F. MORRISON, Daily News Staff Writer morrisj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5573
DR. EVELYN B. WIENER was diagnosed with ovarian cancer in late 2010, but she was not about to let the disease either define or sideline her. Evelyn, an internist and longtime executive director of the University of Pennsylvania's Student Health Service, never lost her optimistic view of life, her enthusiasm for her work or her plans for the future. "She worked tirelessly through chemotherapy," her family said. She was so committed to her chosen profession that even after recurring symptoms sent her back to the hospital, she told friends that she fully intended to keep her plans to attend continuing education and conferences in Boston and San Antonio.
NEWS
May 5, 2014 | By Stacey Burling, Inquirer Staff Writer
A Pittsburgh congressman who is also a clinical psychologist is pushing an ambitious overhaul of the country's mental-health care that is winning praise for its breadth - but also criticism from patient advocates who fear it would erode the rights of the mentally ill. Rep. Tim Murphy's bill, the Helping Families in Mental Health Crisis Act, came partly in response to the Sandy Hook shootings in Newtown, Conn. It is also a response to parents who want desperately to help sick children who are sometimes unable to help themselves.
NEWS
May 4, 2014 | By Walter F. Naedele, Inquirer Staff Writer
David B. Phillips, 75, of Pennsauken, wasn't just a member of the Martin Luther Chapel in Pennsauken. His late parents, Ralph and Elsa, in the 1940s helped found the chapel, part of the Lutheran Church Missouri Synod. "Church was one of the important passions of his life," daughter Karen Wright said. "He was president of the congregation at one point," she said, and at other times its treasurer and Sunday school superintendent. On Tuesday, April 29, Mr. Phillips, who retired in 2001 as manager of the shareholder services department at Cigna, the health insurance services firm, died of heart disease at Our Lady of Lourdes Medical Center in Camden.
BUSINESS
April 22, 2014 | By Jane M. Von Bergen, Inquirer Staff Writer
Sue Schick, 52, president of UnitedHealthcare Pennsylvania and Delaware, claims she was mortified last month when, in the process of honoring her with the Greater Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce's Paradigm Award, the master of ceremonies read entries from her seventh-grade yearbook. She shouldn't have been. The yearbook showed early evidence of the leadership abilities that prompted the chamber to name her 2014's top female business executive. "In the Girl Scout cookie sales, we didn't think we could surpass the previous year," Schick recalled.
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