Researchers found that Alzheimer's disease and dementia incidence rates in the US and Europe dropped by 16% and 13% per decade over the past 25 years, respectively, which may be due to better cardiovascular risk factor control and higher educational attainment. However, the findings in Neurology didn't show reduced Alzheimer's and dementia prevalence in Asia, Africa and South America, which may be caused by elevated smoking rates in those continents.
About 5% of Medicare patients surveyed had received home-based care from 2011 to 2017, and 75% of beneficiaries in that group were homebound, researchers reported in Health Affairs. "The significant unmet needs of this high-need, high-cost population and the known health and cost benefits of home-based medical care should spur stakeholders to expand the availability of this care," the researchers wrote.
President Donald Trump has urged Americans who have recovered from COVID-19 to donate blood plasma to help treat patients and possibly stem the pandemic's spread. Though convalescent plasma is still being evaluated for its safety and efficacy against COVID-19, former FDA commissioners Mark McClellan, Margaret Hamburg, Robert Califf and Scott Gottlieb write: "While vaccine development continues, it's important to advance every promising treatment option to improve the odds for those who become sick."
Employees who repay novel coronavirus pandemic-related distributions taken from their retirement plans under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act are expected to see little impact on their retirement security in the future, according to a study by the Employee Benefit Research Institute. Employees who fail to reimburse their retirement funds, however, could see significant reductions in account balances.
The best fiscal policy at this point in the novel coronavirus pandemic should focus on providing more relief, aligning public health and economic well-being, reducing long-term downward pressure on productivity, and limiting increases in household economic insecurity, writes Mohamed El-Erian. "Throughout, the focus should predominantly be on supporting people directly and effectively rather than going through markets," El-Erian says.
Grace Hong, former co-operator of a Walnut, Calif.-based therapy clinic, was sentenced to one year and one day in prison after being convicted of three counts of health care fraud and one count of conspiracy to commit health care fraud for her involvement in a $6 million scheme to defraud Medicare. Evidence showed Hong conspired with others to submit approximately $6 million worth of fraudulent claims to Medicare for medically unnecessary and unprovided occupational therapy services from 2009 to 2012, which resulted in nearly $4 million worth of improper payments from the program.
Ohio residents Amie Demming, John Panuto, Daniel Gwin, Brent Smith, Walter O'Malley; Nevada residents Nichole Adamson, William Adamson; and Tennessee resident Debra Adamson were charged with failure to maintain adequate records, conspiracy to defraud the US, aggravated identity theft, wire fraud, mail fraud, and conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud as part of a 19-count indictment. According to the indictment, the defendants participated in a scheme that defrauded eight pharmaceutical companies and the FDA, and falsified records used in clinical research trials from January 2013 to March 2018.
Melanie Hunter, a former nurse from Watertown, Wis., entered a guilty plea to three misdemeanor counts of theft of movable property. Authorities said Hunter, who worked at a Watertown, Wis.-based nursing home, stole narcotic drugs that were for the nursing home's residents.
Texas resident Pleshette Carrington was sentenced to 10 years probation after pleading guilty to food stamp fraud. Authorities said Carrington's, and other individual's, food stamp cards were used by a Beaumont, Texas-based restaurant owner to buy food for his eatery.
The COVID R&D Alliance has enrolled the first patients in a platform trial testing Amgen's Otezla, Takeda's Firazyr and AbbVie's experimental cenicriviroc as therapeutics in patients hospitalized with COVID-19. Twenty-one drugmakers are part of the alliance and are working in collaboration with Quantum Leap Healthcare Collaborative and the FDA.