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He died of an overdose—after $110,000 in substance use disorder treatment

September 6, 2019


Sean Blake died of a drug-related overdose in August 2017, after nearly a decade cycling in and out of substance use disorder (SUD) treatment programs that cost his family $110,000—a story that highlights the flaws in the U.S. SUD treatment system.

HHS awards $1.8B in state grants to combat, track opioid epidemic

September 6, 2019


HHS on Wednesday announced it will award more than $1.8 billion in funding to help states and communities continue to combat the opioid epidemic and improve data collection to track progress.

Many hospitals aren't ready to handle pediatric emergencies, study finds

September 6, 2019


A new study finds critically ill children have higher mortality rates when hospital emergency departments are not prepared for pediatric patients—but Jeremy Kahn, a fellow at the University of Pittsburgh and the study's senior author, says there are steps hospitals can take to better prepare for pediatric emergencies.

In the states: Judge approves deal to complete CVS-Aetna merger, North Carolina sues Juul for allegedly targeting children, and more

September 6, 2019


American Health Line rounds up the latest health care news in the states.

Is the US wasting donated kidneys? New study sparks debate.

September 5, 2019


There are 93,000 people in the United States waiting for a kidney transplant, and kidney disease kills about 5,000 U.S. residents on the kidney waiting list annually—yet a study published last week in JAMA Internal Medicine estimated the United States throws away at least 3,500 donated kidneys every year.

Medicare paid twice for about $161M in hospice drugs, report finds

September 5, 2019


Medicare Part D in 2016 unnecessarily spent an estimated $161 million on drugs that already were covered under Medicare Part A, according to an HHS Office of Inspector General report released last week.

Trump admin ends 'deferred action' policy for undocumented immigrants undergoing life-saving medical care

September 3, 2019


U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services earlier this month quietly eliminated a policy that allowed undocumented immigrants to avoid deportation while they or their family members are receiving life-saving medical care—though the agency yesterday said it is reviewing whether to continue "a very limited" version of the policy.

Hurricane Dorian could hit the US today. Here's how hospitals are preparing.

September 3, 2019


As Hurricane Dorian approaches the United States, hospitals up the Atlantic coast are preparing for the powerful storm.

Medicare Part D spending on MS drugs increased tenfold as prices spiked, study suggests

September 3, 2019


Rising prices for multiple sclerosis drugs drove a more than sevenfold increase in out-of-pocket costs for Medicare Part D beneficiaries over a decade, according to a study published last week in JAMA Neurology.

One family's $6M drug claim (and what it means for the future of rare diseases)

August 28, 2019


Dawn Patterson and two of her children have a rare bone disease, and the only treatment is a drug that was slated to cost $6 million a year—a high price tag that observers say is indicative of the pharmaceutical industry's growing interest in treatment for rare diseases.

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