News for Providers
Top stories summarized by our editors
4/18/2019

Therapist Sarah Penke draws upon her own childhood trauma and utilizes art in aiding teenagers who are recovering from sexual abuse and human trafficking. Penke applies her training in social work to her role at Lad Lake, a statewide youth services agency that holds a Paint for Peace exhibit every April to raise awareness of sexual assault.

4/18/2019

The World Health Organization released a digital health technology guideline that it says "stresses the importance of providing supportive environments for training, dealing with unstable infrastructure, as well as policies to protect privacy of individuals, and governance and coordination to ensure these tools are not fragmented across the health system." The document provides advice on how countries can use digital technologies to improve health care, such as telemedicine, clinical decision support tools and automatic reminders about medical appointments.

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World Health Organization
4/18/2019

Researchers reviewed 5,185 smartphone apps for type 2 diabetes management and found that although nearly 58% of the apps alerted users about having low or high blood glucose levels, only 21% and 15% of these warnings, respectively, offered real-time guidance on what to do about the condition. The findings in the Journal of the American Medical Association revealed that only 28% of the apps reminded patients to check their blood glucose levels, while just 37% allowed users to set goals such as achieving a target blood glucose level.

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Reuters
4/18/2019

A report that analyzed survey results and data on more than $396 billion in health care payments processed on InstaMed's platform found 77% of providers said payment collection times in 2018 were longer than one month. The report found 91% of providers still get paper checks from at least one payer, 93% of consumers had been surprised by a medical bill, and 70% of consumers were confused by their bills.

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HealthLeaders Media
4/18/2019

Los Angeles County and California Gov. Gavin Newsom's administration said they will bargain together to buy prescription drugs in Newsom's proposed statewide purchasing system. Newsome said the governors of Rhode Island, Colorado and Illinois are interested in the idea.

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Gov. Gavin Newsom
4/18/2019

Last month, Biogen and its partner, Japan's Eisai, shocked the world by halting the Phase III studies ENGAGE and EMERGE after a futility analysis by the program's independent data monitoring committee showed the trials were likely to fail. The news reinforced growing skepticism about a hypothesis that has dominated Alzheimer's research for decades: the idea that by reducing or eliminating amyloid beta, also known as Abeta, it's possible to stop the disease progression that leads to the cognitive decline and dementia associated with Alzheimer's.

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MedCity News
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Alzheimer, Biogen
4/18/2019

No inherited predisposition to stillbirth transmitted from mother to daughter was found in this study.

4/18/2019

A worryingly low proportion of US adults free from chronic conditions receive any lifestyle advice. Lifestyle modification advice as prescribed by health care providers should be widely implemented, with a goal to increase preventive efforts. These sustainable strategies could work to reduce chronic condition burdens. There is a dire need for lifestyle modification support to be made available to the uninsured population through community engagement.

4/18/2019

This national study assessed substance use disorder prevalence among individuals with hearing loss, compared with those without hearing loss. Authors found hearing loss to be associated with substance use disorders among those aged 49 years and younger. For the group aged 35 to 49 years, hearing loss increased the likelihood of both an alcohol use disorder and a prescription opioid use disorder. In the group aged 18 to 34 years, hearing loss was associated with a greater likelihood of a prescription opioid use disorder.

4/18/2019

This study investigated the occurrence of tuberculosis (TB) among inhaled corticosteroid (ICS) users in a 12-year population cohort comprising about 1 million subjects collected from the Korean claims database. A nested case-control study was performed with 1:4 matching for age, sex, and the initiation date of the ICS. There were 17,991 ICS users, and 175 developed TB during the study period. In the nested case-control study, the occurrence of TB was not related to type of ICS, but was related to a higher annual admission rate and a higher comorbidity score. The risk of TB was higher in patients with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) than in those with asthma (OR: 2.31, CI 95%: 1.39-3.38, p= 0.0011) after adjusting for covariates.