February 25, 1986 |
A quadriplegic who maintained that his use of marijuana was medically necessary will not be allowed to raise that defense at his drug-possession trial, the New Jersey Supreme Court ruled yesterday. New Jersey law allows the defense of medical necessity under certain circumstances. But in a 4-3 decision, the high court found that lawmakers never intended for the defense to be permitted for a marijuana user who had failed to seek the substance through legal channels. The case is the first legal test of New Jersey's law permitting the "medical necessity" defense.
March 29, 2001 |
Supreme Court justices yesterday questioned the legality of distributing marijuana for medical purposes, wondering if it was too broad of a "blanket exception" to federal law. The case before the high court, United States vs. Oakland Cannabis Buyers' Cooperative, marks a major moment in the medical marijuana debate that began in 1996 when California became the first state to allow prescribed use of the drug. Patients with severe illnesses, such as cancer or AIDS, have a medical necessity to use marijuana because no other legal alternatives exist, said Gerald Uelmen, lawyer for the California-based cooperative.
September 14, 1994 |
Two Philadelphia medical equipment suppliers were accused by a federal grand jury yesterday of defrauding the Medicare program of $3.4 million in a telemarketing scheme that sent elderly people equipment they did not need. According to the indictment, from August 1989 through May, John Cocivera and Diane Rooney and their six health-products companies ran a "boiler room" operation in which solicitors called elderly people and persuaded them to accept walkers, canes, heating pads and other medical equipment.
September 6, 2012 |
BOSTON - State prison officials must provide taxpayer-funded sex-reassignment surgery to a transgender inmate serving life in prison for murder, because it is the only way to treat her "serious medical need," a federal judge ruled Tuesday. Michelle Kosilek was born male but has received hormone treatments and now lives as a woman in an all-male prison. Kosilek was named Robert when married to Cheryl Kosilek and was convicted of murdering her in 1990. U.S. District Judge Mark Wolf is believed to be the first federal judge to order prison officials to provide sex-reassignment surgery for a transgender inmate.
December 4, 1998 |
The irate creditors who are yipping at the heels of Allegheny health systems may be the least of the bankrupt hospital chain's problems. The feds, the state, a grand jury and other agencies have opened more than a dozen criminal and civil investigations into Allegheny, according to court documents released yesterday by a U.S. Bankruptcy judge in Pittsburgh. They're looking at alleged irregularities in the hospitals' financial reporting, medical reimbursements, physician billing, Medicare payments and use of restricted charitable donations.
September 25, 1990 |
What's so radical, the marijuana smoker asks, about this? Allow doctors to prescribe marijuana for patients - such as cancer and AIDS sufferers - when there is ample evidence that it relieves punishing or life- threatening symptoms. The smoker, Robert Randall, legally smokes 10 marijuana cigarettes a day. It is legal because he won a long court battle in which he testified that he was a victim of glaucoma and that marijuana relieved pressure on his eyes - pressure that could eventually cause blindness.
July 14, 1999
The fate of the republic must hang in the balance, so shrill, impassioned and partisan is the U.S. Senate debate on how to regulate the managed-care insurers to whom 161 million Americans look for their health coverage. More likely, it's the outcome of next year's congressional elections and the race for the White House that's at stake. Health-care reform is hot - even reform lite. And that's just what the Senate is up to this week, following the House lead of last year. Not even the full-blown Democratic version of mandates on health coverage, nor granting injured patients the right to sue managed-care plans, would amount to fundamental reform.
May 5, 1995 |
The head of six defunct Philadelphia medical-supply companies was convicted by a federal jury yesterday of defrauding the Medicare program out of $3.4 million in a telemarketing scheme in which elderly people were sent medical equipment they did not need. The U.S. District Court jury deliberated eight hours Wednesday and yesterday before convicting John Cocivera of 144 counts of mail fraud, 28 counts of filing false claims, 32 counts of money laundering and one count of structuring bank deposits to evade currency reporting requirements.
April 14, 2006 |
While a great deal has been written about the problems with the new Medicare prescription drug plan, little focus has been paid to possible solutions. Basically, the difficulties are in the areas of enrollment and access to drugs. Seniors are confused about how to determine the most appropriate plan and then, once enrolled, how to get their medications. Pennsylvanians have the largest number of plans available, about 200, all with varying premiums, co-payments, drug coverage and pharmacy networks.
May 21, 2001 |
The bedrock rationale for all our laws against marijuana and other forbidden drugs is the insistence that these substances are dangerous to your health - which is why the government must protect you from them. The problem is that if you're unfortunate enough to contract a deadly illness such as cancer or AIDS, marijuana may actually help treat your pain. So what's the federal policy toward those people? It's simple, really: Drop dead. That's how the Supreme Court read the law in an important case last week.