Challenges To Reducing Discrimination And Health Inequity Through Existing Civil Rights Laws

Health Aff 2017 vol. 36 no. 6 1041-1047
Authors: Amitabh Chandra, Michael Frakes, Anup Malani
“More than fifty years after the passage of the Civil Rights Act of 1964, health care for racial and ethnic minorities remains in many ways separate and unequal in the United States. Moreover, efforts to improve minority health care face challenges that differ from those confronted during de jure segregation. We review these challenges and examine whether stronger enforcement of existing civil rights legislation could help overcome them.”
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Michigan Case Adds U.S. Dimension to Debate on Genital Mutilation

NYT, 10 June 2017
Author: Pam Belluck
“As more details emerge about the first-ever charges of female genital mutilation in the United States, the case is opening a window onto a small immigrant community, while stirring impassioned discussion about genital cutting among women who have experienced it.”
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Nursing Home Certificate-Of-Need Laws Should Be Repealed

Health Affairs Blog, 9 June 2017
Author: David Grabowski
“Despite evidence against them, 34 states still have certificate-of-need laws on the books. One reason why states have maintained these laws is their incredible popularity with nursing homes. If a system is lucky enough to have a regulated monopoly, it will not give that monopoly up easily. Nursing homes have argued that certificate of need allows them to keep sufficient occupancy levels to cover their costs. This guaranteed occupancy is a boon for nursing homes, but hurts consumers. If a nursing home cannot maintain sufficient occupancy without certificate of need, it is likely a sign that the nursing home is not providing adequate quality.”
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Health and Public Policy to Facilitate Effective Prevention and Treatment of Substance Use Disorders Involving Illicit and Prescription Drugs: An American College of Physicians Position Paper

Ann Intern Med. 2017;166(10):733-736.
Authors: Ryan Crowley, Neil Kirschner, Andrew S. Dunn, Sue S. Bornstein
“Substance use disorders involving illicit and prescription drugs are a serious public health issue. In the United States, millions of individuals need treatment for substance use disorders but few receive it. The rising number of drug overdose deaths and the changing legal status of marijuana pose new challenges. In this position paper, the American College of Physicians maintains that substance use disorder is a treatable chronic medical condition and offers recommendations on expanding treatment options, the legal status of marijuana, addressing the opioid epidemic, insurance coverage of substance use disorders treatment, education and workforce, and public health interventions.”
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Ohio Sues 5 Major Drug Companies For ‘Fueling Opioid Epidemic’

NPR, 31 May 2017
Author: Colin Dwyer
“The state of Ohio has sued five major drug manufacturers for their role in the opioid epidemic. In the lawsuit filed Wednesday, state Attorney General Mike DeWine alleges these five companies “helped unleash a health care crisis that has had far-reaching financial, social, and deadly consequences in the State of Ohio.”
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Trump Seeks Delay of Ruling on Health Law Subsidies, Prolonging Uncertainty

NYT, 22 May 2017
Author: Robert Pear
“The Trump administration asked a federal appeals court on Monday to delay ruling on a lawsuit that could determine whether the government will continue paying subsidies under the Affordable Care Act to health insurance companies for the benefit of low-income people — effectively prolonging uncertainty that is already rattling the health law.”
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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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