Health care writers weigh in on these health issues and others.
The Washington Post: Halloween Stirs Childhood Memories Of Sweet Treats. But Adulthood Means Putting That Sweet Tooth In Check.
Ever since Halloween goodies began appearing on grocery store shelves, my sweet tooth has been acting up. It’s craving candy corn, those orange, yellow and white sugary kernels that I couldn’t help but notice now come in gigantic 40-ounce bags.Each bag contains 37 servings, one serving size being 15 pieces. That’s 555 kernels of candy corn, enough to feed a neighborhood of goblins. Or one adult.Just one wouldn’t hurt, says the sweet tooth. It’s been 10 months since I began a whole food, plant-based diet. I thought giving up meat would be tough. It wasn’t. I thought I’d miss milk and eggs. I don’t. It’s the sweet tooth that’s giving me fits. (Courtland Miloy, 10/29)
The Hill: Dementia Impacts Women More And New Approaches Are Needed
Americans are living longer thanks to medical and public health advances and greater access to health care. If you’re a 65-year-old man in the U.S., you can expect to live another 20 years. American women can expect to live even longer — to age 86.5.While this is good news for most of us, increased longevity also creates new challenges. After we turn 65, our risk of developing dementia doubles every five years. By age 85, nearly one in three of us will have the disease. The impact on women is even greater. (Nora Super, 10/29)
Stat: Why Didn’t The Medicare Shared Saving Program Make Headlines? –
Like the proverbial tree falling in the forest, if the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services makes a major announcement about how its Shared Savings Program saved three-quarters of a billion dollars last year alone and no one notices, did the savings really matter? No prominent national business publication gave significant coverage to the late September announcement about the impressive savings from this value-based care program. (Shawn Morris, 10/30)
The Hill: 4 Policies We Need To Protect Victims Of Domestic Violence
Most women who are killed in the United States are killed by a current or former intimate partner, and over half of all intimate partner homicides are committed with guns. Despite what some may believe, guns do not make you safer. There are about 4.5 million women in America who have been threatened with a gun and nearly 1 million women who have been shot or shot at by an intimate partner. We also know that a woman is five times more likely to be murdered when her abuser has access to a gun. In order to reduce domestic violence injuries and fatalities, each state must enhance and enforce its domestic violence and firearms laws. (Lisa Geller, 10/29)
The Washington Post: The Cost Of In-Home Care For Seniors Is Rising. You Could Pay More Than $ 52,000 A Year.
When my father-in-law came to live with my family, we hired home health aides to help with his care. He couldn’t cook or feed himself and needed help with bathing and getting dressed. He required assistance taking his medication and even rising from a bed or chair. My father-in-law had a decent amount of savings, but to try to make the money last to cover the long-term care he needed, we hired someone for just four hours in the morning and then another aide came for two hours in the evening to help my father-in-law get ready for bed. The rest of the time my husband and I were his caregivers. (Singletary, 10/29)
The Birmingham News: What Judge’s Ruling On Abortion Ban Means
If you hate the abortion ban, and think it an over-reaching affront to women and healthcare and the modern age, do not waste time celebrating the ruling. It is not a surprise, and it is not a permanent change. Not yet.If you hate abortion, and love the law that would almost wipe it out in Alabama, do not flail and wail. It was the ruling expected by the Alabama Attorney General’s office and the Legislature that wrote the bill that created the law that was meant to be challenged so it could be declared unconstitutional by a lower court. This was always the plan. It was always meant to go all the way to the U.S. Supreme Court. (John Archibald, 10/30)
Des Moines Register: Iowans Should Support, Not Protest, Emma Goldman Clinic
The Associated Press recently reported the number of abortions in the United States is at the lowest level in decades. Since the Supreme Court’s legalization of abortion as a medical procedure, making it both safe and accessible, women have been able to avoid risking their health and lives to terminate a pregnancy. The abortion rate is now less than half what it was in 1990. According to the Guttmacher Institute, hundreds of state laws restricting abortion access have been enacted in recent years, but these laws were not the main force behind the decline in abortions. Much of the decline occurred in states that did not enact any restrictive laws. (Joyce Janca-Aji, 10/29)
The Oregonian: Air Ambulances A Vital Link For Rural Health Care
Rural Oregonians are already underserved when it comes to health care. Air ambulances are sometimes our only hope of getting to a high-level facility that can treat us in the event of a heart attack, stroke or other major trauma. Over 100 rural hospitals have closed in this country since 2010; we can’t take any more resources being taken away from us. (Tim Josi, 10/30)
The CT Mirror: Cutting Retirement Benefits To Teachers Is No Solution To Our Education Crisis
We face a crisis in education: we are recruiting and retaining too few teachers. Only 30% of teachers stay for ten years, the time required to vest in the Teachers’ Retirement System. Why is this happening? There are many reasons. The ever-increasing demands on the time and energy of teachers certainly is a factor. So is the low comparative salary. (Alisha Blake, 10/30)
Nashville Tennessean: Tennessee Should Not Let $ 732 Million For Low-Income Families Sit Idle
Tennessee is sitting on $ 732 million of federal taxpayer dollars that should be going to low-income families. The money has accrued for years from excess revenue from a $ 190.9 million annual block grant through the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program. (David Plazas, 10/30)
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.