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Updated: 19 min 46 sec ago

Benzodiazepines: America's 'Other Prescription Drug Problem'

Thu, 04/26/2018 - 11:38am

Drugs like Valium, Xanax and Ativan are more popular than ever. Frequently used to treat anxiety, the medicines can be risky, especially when mixed with alcohol or opioids.

(Image credit: Nicole Xu for NPR)

Ronny Jackson Withdraws As VA Nominee

Thu, 04/26/2018 - 8:03am

Jackson decried "baseless and anonymous attacks on my character and integrity," following detailed accusations including improper prescribing of drugs and wrecking a government vehicle while drunk.

(Image credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Redesigning Maternal Care: OB-GYNs Are Urged to See New Mothers Sooner And More Often

Mon, 04/23/2018 - 5:01pm

Sweeping changes in medical practice could improve the dismal U.S. rate of maternal deaths and near-deaths, an influential doctors group says.

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Texas Disability Group Wants Victims' Voices Heard In Gun Debate

Fri, 04/20/2018 - 1:04pm

Advocates in Texas wants to help people who've been disabled by gun violence talk to lawmakers. Victims say they have a big stake in how guns are regulated.

(Image credit: Gabriel C. Perez/KUT)

How Medicare's Conflicting Hospitalization Rules Cost Me Thousands Of Dollars

Fri, 04/20/2018 - 9:48am

NPR correspondent Alison Kodjak's mom was admitted to the hospital for four nights after a fall. Because the hospital said she was an outpatient, Medicare wouldn't pay for her rehabilitative care.

(Image credit: Alison Kodjak/NPR)

Can Triage Nurses Help Prevent 911 Overload?

Thu, 04/19/2018 - 5:00am

One in four calls to the Washington, D.C., 911 line isn't an emergency. The city now has triage nurses working with dispatchers to get callers with less urgent needs a same-day clinic visit instead.

(Image credit: Selena Simmons-Duffin/NPR)

Federal Appeals Court Finds State's Drug Price-Gouging Law Unconstitutional

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 12:25pm

Legal analysts say the decision to overturn Maryland's law could slow momentum for other states that are attempting to take action to curb high drug costs.

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New York City Mice Carry Bacteria That Can Make People Sick

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 10:04am

An analysis of mice in the Big Apple finds that many harbor bacteria that can make humans sick if exposed to the animals' droppings. Some of the bacterial strains were resistant to antibiotics.

(Image credit: Mchugh Tom/Science Source/Getty Images)

Medicare Advisers Recommend Payment Cuts To Many Free-Standing ERs

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 5:00am

An agency that advises Congress recommends a 30 percent reduction in some federal reimbursements to free-standing ERs that are within 6 miles of a hospital.

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Young People More Likely To Shift Toward Supporting Abortion Rights, Poll Finds

Tue, 04/17/2018 - 12:01am

The generational divide uncovered by a survey from the Public Religion Research Institute may be linked to changing attitudes about religion.

(Image credit: Alex Wong/Getty Images)

Merck Immunotherapy Drug Shines In Lung Cancer Study

Mon, 04/16/2018 - 5:43pm

Research finds that more than two-thirds of lung cancer patients who received Keytruda plus chemotherapy would be alive a year later, compared with about half of people who only got chemotherapy.

(Image credit: Peter Dazeley/Getty Images)

Merck Immunotherapy Drug Shines In Lung Cancer Study

Mon, 04/16/2018 - 5:43pm

Research finds that more than two-thirds of lung cancer patients who received Keytruda plus chemotherapy would be alive a year later, compared with about half of people who only got chemotherapy.

(Image credit: Peter Dazeley/Getty Images)

Drug Test Spurs Frank Talk Between Hypertension Patients And Doctors

Mon, 04/16/2018 - 5:00am

High blood pressure can cause severe health problems, but some of the medications to control it have unpleasant side effects. A new drug test alerts doctors when patients aren't taking their meds.

(Image credit: Blake Farmer/WPLN)

New Medicaid Requirements Signals Trump Crackdown On Public Assistance Programs

Sun, 04/15/2018 - 4:50pm

Michel Martin speaks to Diane Rowland from The Kaiser Family Foundation about a new order from President Trump to establish work requirements for recipients of Medicaid and other federal benefits.

Canada To Measure Marijuana Use By Testing Sewage

Fri, 04/13/2018 - 10:14am

People responding to surveys sometimes misstate their drug use. Canada will check wastewater for traces of drugs to more accurately assess consumption.

(Image credit: Dan Burgard)

Male OB-GYNs Are Rare, But Is That A Problem?

Thu, 04/12/2018 - 5:00am

Women outnumber men in obstetrics and gynecology residencies and medical practices in the U.S. Heads of training programs now wonder if they should go out of their way to recruit more men.

(Image credit: Alex Olgin/WFAE)

Senate Bill Aims to Broaden Access To Hearing Services

Wed, 04/11/2018 - 1:00pm

The measure would remove a potential barrier to getting hearing aids by allowing Medicare beneficiaries to go to an audiologist for a hearing test to diagnose a hearing problem without a referral.

(Image credit: Leyla B / EyeEm/Getty Images)

Kenyan Woman Abused By Nurses During Childbirth Wins Landmark Case

Tue, 04/10/2018 - 1:48pm

Josephine Majani passed out searching for help as she delivered her baby on a the floor of a hospital in Kenya. She hopes her case will push for reforms in treatment of women during childbirth.

(Image credit: Thomas Mukoya/Reuters)

PrEP Campaign Aims To Block HIV Infection And Save Lives In D.C.

Tue, 04/10/2018 - 11:47am

PrEP is shorthand for a pill that prevents HIV infection, if taken daily. As Washington, D.C. aims to cut new infections in half by 2020, it hopes to quadruple the number of residents on the medicine.

(Image credit: Tyrone Turner/ WAMU)

Bill Of The Month: A Tale Of 2 CT Scanners — One Richer, One Poorer

Mon, 04/09/2018 - 4:53am

Why is the price of a CT scan 33 times higher in a hospital emergency room than in an outpatient imaging center just down the street?

(Image credit: Maria Fabrizio for NPR)