• Advocates seek restoration of law offering OD protections

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    PROVIDENCE, R.I. (AP) — The expiration of a law that protects Rhode Islanders who call 911 to assist drug overdose victims will lead to more senseless drug overdose deaths, public health advocates said Wednesday. The good Samaritan law, which offered limited immunity from drug charges for those who are overdosing and those who are calling for emergency assistance, expired Wednesday. Enacted in 2012, the law also protected from civil liability or criminal prosecution those who administer naloxone, also known as Narcan, to someone they believe has overdosed. "Tragically, this is a death sentence for so many Rhode Islanders struggling with addiction and for many in recovery," said Rebecca Nieves McGoldrick, executive director

  • Obama urges bipartisanship in Medicaid expansion effort

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — President Barack Obama said Wednesday that he'd like to see "some good sense spring forth" as Tennessee lawmakers try to work out their differences and expand Medicaid in a state he touted as having a history of bipartisanship. Obama visited an elementary school in a northeast Nashville neighborhood and spoke about his health care overhaul, known officially as the Affordable Care Act, which was upheld by the U.S. Supreme Court last week. The White House had said Obama wasn't going to focus on Republican Gov. Bill Haslam's failed plan to expand Medicaid in Tennessee.

  • Walker signs emergency allergy treatment bill

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    MADISON, Wis. (AP) — Gov. Scott Walker has signed a bill that permits businesses to keep a supply of epinephrine injections to counteract life-threatening allergic reactions. Schools already can keep a supply of auto-injectors on hand. The bill allows camps, colleges, restaurants and other businesses to carry and administer the drug. Auto-injectors are used to treat anaphylaxis, a potentially deadly allergic reaction that can construct airways and make it hard to breathe. Walker signed the bill Wednesday.

  • Regulators approve hospital building with conditions

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    BURLINGTON, Vt. (AP) — Regulators have approved the addition of a 128-room, $187.3 million building at the University of Vermont Medical Center with conditions that could postpone construction. The Green Mountain Care Board is requiring the hospital to do additional financial reporting through Sept. 30, 2016 before construction can start. The hospital had hoped to start work this summer. The seven-story building would include 128 private patient rooms. Hospital spokesman Mike Noble said Wednesday that there's a provision under the rules to seek relief from some of the conditions. President and CEO Dr. John Brumsted said the medical center still has some work to do to meet the board's conditions.

  • Nebraska medical center to get funding for Ebola training

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — An academic medical center in Nebraska has been designated as a national facility for Ebola training. The University of Nebraska Medical Center and its primary clinical partner, Nebraska Medicine, will receive a little over $5 million from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services for the designation. The award is part of $12 million in federal dollars being shared with Emory University in Atlanta and Bellevue Hospital Center in New York City. The three academic institutions will work with federal officials to train health care providers and facilities on strategies to manage Ebola and other emerging infectious diseases. The Nebraska center has played a key role in the U.S. response to the Eb

  • Ex-Illinois women's basketball players sue school, coach

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    URBANA, Ill. (AP) — Seven former University of Illinois women's basketball players sued the university Wednesday, accusing coach Matt Bollant and a former assistant of violating their civil rights by using race to divide the team and try to force some players out. The lawsuit adds to this year's stream of accusations against the school's sports programs over player treatment. Some of the plaintiffs' parents made similar complaints to the school in May, claims that are being investigated by a university-hired law firm along with one from a former football player who says his injuries weren't properly handled. A former soccer player has sued the school over the handling of her concussions.

  • Judge: Medicaid must cover some child behavioral treatments

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — A judge ordered the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services to stop excluding Medicaid coverage of certain behavioral treatments for children with developmental disabilities, saying the policy conflicts with federal law. Lancaster County District Judge John Colburn issued the order Tuesday in a lawsuit filed on behalf of two children, listed only as "K.D." and "S.L.", who are covered by Medicaid and suffer from severe behavioral disorders. The lawsuit says the children's doctors recommended a treatment called applied behavior analysis to help them reach their full potential and be less likely to be institutionalized. In the case of K.D.

  • Obama: 'Feeling pretty good' about health care

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — Fresh off a Supreme Court victory, President Barack Obama said Wednesday that he's "feeling pretty good" about the state of his health care law and pleaded for bipartisan cooperation on ways to make it work even better. Obama said he wants to refocus the debate on improving health care quality, expanding access and eliminating waste now that the high court has upheld a key element of the Affordable Care Act. "I'm feeling pretty good about how health care is going," Obama said before he removed his suit jacket and answered questions about health care from Tennesseans seated at tables in an elementary school cafeteria. Obama's choice to visit Tennessee was deliberate.

  • Ex-Iowa State scientist gets prison for faking HIV research

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A former Iowa State University scientist who altered blood samples to make it appear he had achieved a breakthrough toward a potential vaccine against HIV was sentenced Wednesday to more than 4 ½ years in prison for making false statements in research reports. Dong-Pyou Han, 58, also must pay $7.2 million to a federal government agency that funded the research. He entered a plea agreement in February admitting guilt to two counts of making false statements. Government prosecutors said Han's misconduct dates to 2008 when he worked at Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland under professor Michael Cho, who was leading a team testing an experimental HIV vaccine on rabbits.

  • Wednesday ends long wait for medical marijuana patients

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) — Minnesota's medical marijuana program kicked off in the dead of night Wednesday, as the first three patients filed into a Minneapolis clinic at midnight and emerged with medicine the state's law had long kept out of reach. For Kim Kelsey and Kathy Engstrom, each hope a supply of capsules and oils offers a glimmer of hope for finally treating her son's seizures. Patrick McClellan hopes a small vaporizer can replace the emergency pills he keeps around his neck in case severe muscle spasms strike. But for all three, Wednesday capped off a long wait.

  • Montana reports first human West Nile virus case of 2015

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    HELENA, Mont. (AP) — Montana health officials say the year's first human case of West Nile virus has been reported in Rosebud County. Department of Public Health and Human Safety officials said in a statement Wednesday the person is recovering in a hospital. The statement did not identify the person other than he or she is an adult. Officials say it is earlier than usual for the mosquito-transmitted infection to be reported in a person. Five cases were reported last year. By comparison, there were 200 cases in 2003 and 2007, but none in 2010. Symptoms include a low-grade fever, headache and muscle aches. In a very few people, infection can lead to life-threatening symptoms that include convulsions, coma and para

  • Poll: Approval for Supreme Court health care decision

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) — A new poll finds that most Americans approve of the recent Supreme Court decision preserving the health care law's subsidized insurance premiums for people in all 50 states. Overall, 62 percent approved, while 32 percent disapproved, said the survey released Wednesday by the nonpartisan Kaiser Family Foundation. Opponents of the law had argued that a strict reading of President Barack Obama's law only allowed subsidies in states that set up their own insurance markets. The court disagreed, 6-3. The poll found overwhelming approval for the decision among Democrats, and strong disapproval among Republicans. But independents mirrored the national results, approving by 61 percent to 34 percent.

  • Nurse drops newborn baby at hospital, fracturing his skull

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    UNIONTOWN, Pa. (AP) — A hospital and police are investigating what might have caused a veteran nurse to drop a newborn baby, fracturing his skull. Jacqueline Hunt, the baby's mother, told WPXI-TV that a pediatrician said the nurse was feeding and burping her 1-day-old son, Eli, at Uniontown Hospital when the nurse became "drowsy and fell asleep and dropped him." The hospital and Uniontown police confirmed that a 30-year veteran nurse accidentally dropped the infant at about 6 a.m. Tuesday. Uniontown Hospital spokesman Josh Krysak said the baby is expected to recover. He is being treated at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC.

  • Illinois medical marijuana patients now number 2,600

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    CHICAGO (AP) — With the number of Illinois medical marijuana patients inching slowly upward to 2,600 on Wednesday, the state's licensed growers are fine-tuning their models to get the right number of plants in the ground. At least one company hopes to have marijuana growing this summer. Others are still months away from planting. They're all tracking the official patient total with interest and trepidation. "They're watching it like a hawk," said David Friedman, CEO of Chicago-based MJIC Media, which covers the industry for investors. "It's a huge indication for them" of future paying customers and revenue.

  • Nixon reauthorizes tax that funds Missouri Medicaid services

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — A Missouri tax on medical service providers that helps fund the state Medicaid program has been reauthorized by the governor. Democratic Gov. Jay Nixon on Wednesday signed legislation to continue the tax for another year. The measure extends taxes on medical providers including hospitals, nursing homes and ambulances. The revenue brings in roughly $3.6 billion for health care through the state's Medicaid services, a significant chunk of the program's funding. The legislation passed on the final day of the legislative session in May after Senate Democrats broke a filibuster on an unrelated bill to allow a vote on the tax. The tax would have expired in September if lawmakers took no acti

  • Thousands gather in Portland as Oregon eases into legal weed

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Oregon began easing into an era of legal marijuana Wednesday after an early morning pot celebration at the center of Portland. A few thousand people jammed a sidewalk and bike lane on the Burnside Bridge at midnight Tuesday and counted down the moments until July 1. That's the date voters established for adults to be able to legally possess and grow limited amounts of marijuana for personal use. With the vote last fall, the state became the fourth with legal pot, after Colorado, Washington and Alaska. More than 40 years earlier, Oregon was the first state to decriminalize small amounts of pot. "Oregon has long been a pioneer on sensible marijuana policies," said Anthony Johnson, chief petitioner

  • New Orleans considers new downtown homeless shelter

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    NEW ORLEANS (AP) — A coalition is developing plans for raising $7 million to build a homeless shelter in downtown New Orleans. The group is led by the Downtown Development District. Kurt Weigle, president and CEO of the Downtown Development District, tells NOLA.com/The Times-Picayune (http://bit.ly/1GNWMmf ) that the project will centralize the homeless population for outreach workers and offer mental health and addiction services. Weigle said a so-called "low-barrier" shelter will have fewer rules to stay there — such as being sober or having an ID — to encourage more people, especially the mentally ill and chronically homeless, to walk in and access services.

  • Maryland governor says he's 'doing great' on day 5 of chemo

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) — Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan is on his fifth day of chemotherapy, but he says he's "doing great" and getting things done from the hospital. Hogan said in a Facebook post Wednesday morning that he's starting the last day of his first round of 24-hour therapy. The governor posted a photo of himself with his wife and daughter in the hospital. He is expected to leave the hospital Wednesday night. Hogan is being treated at the University of Maryland Medical Center in Baltimore for B-cell non-Hodgkin lymphoma. When he announced the diagnosis June 22, he said the disease was at an advanced stage but his prognosis was good.

  • Study offers clue to link between swine flu shot, narcolepsy

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    WASHINGTON (AP) — One vaccine used in Europe during the 2009 swine flu pandemic was linked to rare cases of a baffling side effect — the sleep disorder narcolepsy. Now new research offers a clue to what happened. The vaccine Pandemrix never was used in the United States, and was pulled off the market abroad, but reports of narcolepsy in Finland and several other countries sparked questions globally about flu shot safety. On Wednesday, an international team of researchers reported the problem may have been a case of mistaken identity by the immune system. Narcolepsy is an incurable disorder that interferes with normal sleep cycles, leaving people chronically sleepy during the daytime and apt to abruptly fall asleep.

  • Meningitis vaccine needed for some Missouri college students

    Updated: Wed, Jul 1, 2015

    JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. (AP) — Students living on Missouri public college campuses now must be vaccinated against bacterial meningitis. A state law requiring the vaccine for those living in on-campus housing took effect Wednesday. Students can seek a religious or medical exemption to the requirement. Meningococcal disease can cause an inflammation of the brain lining known as meningitis. It can spread among people in crowded places such as dormitories and can strike quickly with sometimes deadly results. Some symptoms can appear similar to the flu, including fever, headaches and neck stiffness.




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