Canada eases steps to open supervised drug injection sites amid opioid crisis

The Guardian, 21 May 2017
Author: Ashifa Kassam
“Canada’s government has made it easier to open supervised drug injection sites across the country, offering communities a lifeline as they battle an opioid crisis that has claimed thousands of lives in recent years. New legislation passed this week streamlines the more than two dozen requirements previously needed to launch these facilities, which offer a medically supervised space and sterile equipment for people who use drugs intravenously.”
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Planned Parenthood forced to close four clinics in Iowa after funding cut

The Guardian, 19 May 2017
Author: Molly Redden
“An aggressive campaign by Iowa lawmakers to strip Planned Parenthood of much of its public funding will force it to close four clinics serving 15,000 patients, the women’s health group said on Thursday. Individual states have made piecemeal efforts to block Planned Parenthood from receiving public funds meant to help states provide low-income women with STI tests, contraception, and cancer screenings. For Iowa, the closures mean that women on Medicaid in four cities – Burlington, Keokuk, Sioux City, and the Quad Cities – will have one less option for family planning services, such as contraception, covered by their insurance.”
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Life Expectancy Goes Up for Black Americans

WebMD, 2 May 2017
Author: Steven Reinberg
“Black Americans are living longer, but they still aren’t living as long as whites are, federal health officials reported Tuesday. While the overall death rate among black people dropped 25 percent between 1999 and 2015, the average life expectancy among black Americans still lags behind whites by almost four years. The gap in early death rates between blacks and whites is closing due to improved health of the black population overall.”
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California Has A Deadly Problem With Regulating Naturopathic Doctors

Forbes, 24 April 2017
Author: Britt Marie Hermes
“Since there is no “naturopathic standard of care,” a point that the committee acknowledged in 2009 and that critics of the regulation of naturopathy have noticed too, naturopathic expert reviewers must make ad hoc determinations that are likely to deviate from the medical consensus and fail to establish lasting precedent. For some influential naturopathic doctors, the standard of care includes anything taught in naturopathic school or done by two or more practitioners.”
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West Virginia Becomes 29th US State To OK Medical Marijuana

TechTimes, 20 April 2017
Author: Kalyan Kumar
“Marking a liberal approach by creating a bigger role in treating the terminally ill, West Virginia on Wednesday joined the club of states that legalized medical marijuana.
The new law will make medical marijuana available for certain medical conditions under strict state controls. It will also allow doctors to prescribe cannabis for patients suffering from seizures, cancer, chronic pain, stress disorder, AIDS and other problems.”
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Las Vegas’ HIV prevention initiatives include installing syringe vending machines

FoxNews, 18 April 2017
Author: Andrew O’Reilly
“Inspired by successes in places like Europe and Australia, Trac-B Exchange, the Southern Nevada Health District and the Nevada AIDS Research and Education Society are set to begin a pilot program that will install three syringe-dispensing vending machines across Las Vegas in the hope of reducing drug users’ needle sharing. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention assert that needle exchange programs are effective in preventing the spread of disease.”
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The Hyde Amendment at 40 Years and Reproductive Rights in the United States

JAMA. 2017;317(15):1523-1524.
Authors: Eli Y. Adashi; Rachel H. Occhiogrosso
“On September 30, 1976, in the waning months of the 94th Congress, freshman Representative Henry J. Hyde (R-IL) witnessed his namesake amendment enacted into law via the Departments of Labor and Health, Education, and Welfare Appropriation Act of 1977 (PL 94-439). All of one sentence, the amendment stipulated that “None of the [Medicaid] funds contained in this Act shall be used to perform abortions except where the life of the mother would be endangered if the fetus were carried to term.”
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Revamping the US Federal Common Rule: Modernizing Human Participant Research Regulations

JAMA. 2017;317(15):1521-1522
Authors: James G. Hodge Jr; Lawrence O. Gostin
“On January 19, 2017, the Office for Human Research Protections (OHRP), Department of Health and Human Services, and 15 federal agencies published a final rule to modernize the Federal Policy for the Protection of Human Subjects (known as the “Common Rule”). Initially introduced more than a quarter century ago, the Common Rule predated modern scientific methods and findings, notably human genome research.”
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Gorsuch On Sidelines As Supreme Court Decides Insurance, Legal Sanctions Cases

Forbes, 18 April 2017
Author: Daniel Fisher
“The U.S. Supreme Court issued a pair of decisions today affecting legal sanctions and the power of states to control insurance contracts, noting in each one the non-participation of the court’s newest Justice, Neil Gorsuch.”
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