Weekly Reader - August 22, 2022

Welcome to Finestra’s Weekly Reader, wherein we recount intriguing, important, or infamous health care-related stories you may have missed over the past week.

Weekly Reader - August 22, 2022
Photo by Marga Santoso / Unsplash

Welcome to Finestra’s Weekly Reader, wherein we recount intriguing, important, or infamous health care-related stories you may have missed over the past week.

  • Big Pharma Went All In to Kill Drug Pricing Negotiations. (Kaiser Health News) “For decades, the drug industry has yelled bloody murder each time Congress considered a regulatory measure that threatened its profits. But the hyperbole reached a new pitch in recent weeks as the Senate moved to adopt modest drug pricing negotiation measures in the Inflation Reduction Act..”
  • Tinnitus afflicts about 749 million people worldwide. (Washington Post) “Tinnitus, commonly described as ringing in the ears, affects about 749 million people worldwide, according to research in the journal JAMA Neurology and based on about five decades of data. Not a disease but rather a symptom of an underlying health condition, tinnitus is the perception of a constant or intermittent sound in one or both ears when there is no external source for the sound.”
  • Inflation Reduction Act Contains Important Cost-Saving Changes for Many Patients — Maybe for You. (Kaiser Health News) “The giant health care, climate, and tax bill expected to pass the House on Friday and be sent to the president for his signature won’t be as sweeping as the Democrats who wrote it had hoped, but it would help millions of Americans better afford their prescription drugs and health insurance.”
  • Polio Has Been Detected in New York City Wastewater, Officials Say. (New York Times) “Polio outbreaks incited regular panics decades ago, until a vaccine was developed and the disease was largely eradicated. Then on Friday, New York City health authorities announced that they had found the virus in wastewater samples, suggesting polio was probably circulating in the city again.”
  • For Medically Vulnerable Families, Inflation’s Squeeze Is Inescapable. (Kaiser Health News) "For millions of families living with chronic diseases — such as heart disease, diabetes, and cancer — or other debilitating conditions, inflation is proving a punishing scourge that could be harmful to their health. Unlike dining out less or buying fewer clothes, many patients don’t have a choice when it comes to paying for medicine, medical supplies, and other ancillary costs."
  • How to keep your pets safe from monkeypox — and what to do if they get it. (National Public Radio) “But the virus is zoonotic, meaning it is spread between animals and humans — and yes, you can give it to your pets, and vice versa. (However, there are currently no reports in the U.S. of the virus being passed from humans to animals.)”
  • Buy and Bust: Collapse of Private Equity-Backed Rural Hospitals Mired Employees in Medical Bills. (Kaiser Health News) “'None of us knew until it was too late,' Lovell said. She said she faces $250,000 to $300,000 in medical bills from the last months of her husband’s life. 'All they had to do was tell us that we didn’t have insurance.'"
  • CDC director orders agency overhaul, admitting flawed Covid-19 response. (Politico) “The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is launching an overhaul of its structure and operations in an attempt to modernize the agency and rehabilitate its reputation following intense criticism of its handling of the coronavirus pandemic and, more recently, the growing monkeypox outbreak.”
  • Public Health Agencies Adapt Covid Lessons to Curb Overdoses, STDs, and Gun Violence. (Kaiser Health News) “The pandemic laid bare the gaps and disparities in the U.S. public health system, and often resulted in blowback against local officials trying to slow the coronavirus’s spread. But one positive outcome, in part fueled by a boost in federal dollars, is that health workers have started adapting lessons they learned from their covid-19 response to other aspects of their work.”