A BioEnterprise report showed Minneapolis topped the Midwest region in biomedical investments with $664 million last year. It was followed by Chicago with $551 million and Cleveland with $294 million.
The FDA approved Impulse Dynamics' Optimizer Smart system for people with moderate to severe chronic heart failure who are not eligible for cardiac resynchronization or other heart failure devices. The system consists of a pulse generator implanted in the chest and connected to three leads implanted in the heart, a battery charger and a programmable interface.
Roche has released its Navify Mutation Profiler clinical software, designed for next-generation sequencing cancer test annotation, interpretation and clinical reporting, after receiving CE mark approval. The company also launched an optional clinical decision support app called Navify Therapy Matcher, which aids in connecting clinically actionable mutations to therapy options.
Rep. Kathy Castor, D-Fla., filed a bill that would restore funding for navigators to help people enroll in exchange-sold health plans and another bill that would ban some short-term insurance plans with limited coverage. Federal funding for navigators was cut by 81% last year.
A study in The American Journal of Medicine showed that 38,942 US youths ages 5 to 18 died from firearms between 1999 to 2017, with 2,462 firearm-related deaths among children and teens in 2017, compared with 144 deaths in police officers and nearly 1,000 among active-duty military worldwide. Researchers also found that pediatric firearm-related deaths were most prevalent among blacks, boys and those ages 15 to 18.
Every 15-point increase in states' gun control scores, indicating stricter gun control laws, was tied to declines of almost 1%, about 2% and more than 1% in the risk of weapon threats and injuries at school, weapon carrying at any location, and school absences due to feeling unsafe among high-school students, respectively, according to a study in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health. The findings also showed a stronger association between tighter gun laws and reduced weapon-carrying prevalence among males than females.
A Danish study in JAMA Psychiatry showed that youths whose mothers had mental disorders, especially those whose mothers were mentally ill before conception, had a higher likelihood of not completing primary schooling, compared with those whose mothers didn't have mental illness. Researchers also found that the link between maternal mental illness and noncompletion of primary education persisted after adjusting for pediatric and paternal mental disorders and maternal age at birth.
A survey of 400 government employees showed 47% liked automatic enrollment in defined contribution plans and 77% said if they were automatically enrolled, they would stick with the plan. The survey from the Center for State and Local Government Excellence, ICMA-RC and Greenwald & Associates found 44% supported having an employer set a default deferral rate.
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam signed legislation removing the age cap for autism coverage, which currently is limited to patients ages 2 to 10. The law takes effect next January.
Beto O'Rourke carved out his own health care policy space as he campaigned in Iowa for the Democratic nomination to run for president. O'Rourke backed away from supporting a single-payer system and talked up the "Medicare for America" bill introduced in the House that would open up Medicare to all adults and children and automatically enroll newborns, the elderly and the uninsured.