Topic: health care

Feminist Obama: A Non-Ironic Use Of The ‘Hey Girl’ Meme In Reproductive Rights Debate!

Feminist Obama: A Non-Ironic Use Of The 'Hey Girl' Meme In Reproductive Rights Debate!

Aw, Nerve made Feminist Barack Obama images, based on the press conference he held yesterday in response to Todd Akins‘ now-infamous comments about “legitimate rape” not causing pregnancy. This isn’t the first time that the feminist Ryan Gosling meme has been applied to politics; most recently, a flurry of ironic Paul Ryan images started floating around the web after Mitt Romney announced his conservative running-mate. But it is the first time we’ve seen said trend applied to our President–and in a happily non-ironic way! More »

Eye-Opening Study Shows 1/3 of Young Adults Struggle With Medical Debt

Eye-Opening Study Shows 1/3 of Young Adults Struggle With Medical Debt

A new study from the Commonwealth Fund found that one-third of young adults ages 19-29 were struggling with medical bills or debt. The study also found that about 40% of young adults did not have health insurance at some point in 2011. While the stats aren’t really surprising, it’s becoming more and more clear that young people need to make healthcare a priority, stat. More »

New Laws Make Generic Drugs Less Safe…Which Could Make Health Care Pricier For Everyone

New Laws Make Generic Drugs Less Safe...Which Could Make Health Care Pricier For Everyone

When choosing between brand-name and generic, most of us are considering price and doctor recommendations. But what most of us don’t realize is that it will make the difference between winning and losing, if your drugs end up causing complications that lead you to take their manufacturers to court. According to the New York Times, dozens of lawsuits have been lost because the makers of generic pharmaceuticals aren’t held accountable for their drug labels. Times author Katie Thomas emphasizes how scary this is for people who’ve been debilitated because of insufficient warning on drugs, but what she doesn’t mention is how this could make health care even more difficult to navigate—and expensive—for the rest of us, too. More »

Tony Bennett Says Legalizing Drugs Could Prevent Deaths Like Whitney Houston’s; Prescription Drugs Aren’t Safer

Tony Bennett Says Legalizing Drugs Could Prevent Deaths Like Whitney Houston's; Prescription Drugs Aren't Safer

Whitney Houston‘s death weighed on the Clive Davis Pre-Grammys Show on Saturday night, where she was scheduled to perform. Producers decided that the show must go on, but performers, including Tony Bennett, grappled with the news of her death on stage. Many honored the late singer, but Bennett took it a step further, urging for the legalization of drugs, which he implied might prevent tragedies like Houston’s early passing. But as more evidence comes out about Houston’s death, it seems that it was likely caused by legal prescription drugs. So while Bennett’s suggestion may not have prevented her death, we do need a better solution. More »

Your Insurance Might Not Let You Fill Prescriptions At Walgreens; Here’s Why

Your Insurance Might Not Let You Fill Prescriptions At Walgreens; Here's Why

If you want proof that the prescription drug industry is serious business, just check out the Twitter feeds of Walgreen and Express Scripts for a rare view of public fighting between two of the country’s largest health care companies. Their failure to reach an agreement on drug prices have made it impossible for millions of Americans to get a prescription filled at Walgreen. More »

Pennsylvania Hospital Won’t Hire Smokers; Why Not Bar Other Nasty Health Habits?

Pennsylvania Hospital Won't Hire Smokers; Why Not Bar Other Nasty Health Habits?

As of February 1, a Pennsylvania hospital will be enforcing a smoke-free policy for employees–on and off the job. They say they want to be a good example of health for their patients–as they should be–and smoking is certainly a good place to start. But what about other nasty health habits that aren’t so easy to test for? Will the hospital ban junk food, too? Will it ensure that all workers have gotten adequate sleep before working a shift? I’m all for putting the kibosh on smoking anywhere and everywhere possible, but I’m at least as worried about the other nasty health habits happening around the O.R. More »

California To Stop Cough Syrup Sale To Minors On January 1; Shouldn’t Every State?

California To Stop Cough Syrup Sale To Minors On January 1; Shouldn't Every State?

As of January first, California won’t be selling cough syrup to minors under the age of 18, thanks to the “robotripping” law proposed by two Palo Alto cops back in 2004. But, especially coming on the heels of U.S. Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius’ decision to make Plan B unavailable to minors without prescription, it seems ridiculous that this is only getting passed in California. If the HHS doesn’t think Plan B is safe for teens (despite ample evidence–from the FDA–that it is), then why should anyone be selling drugs that are easily turned into dangerous illegal drugs? More »

Prescription Addiction: How A Neck Injury Made One Man’s Baby Hooked On Methadone

Prescription Addiction: How A Neck Injury Made One Man's Baby Hooked On Methadone

Prescription drug addiction has been all over the news recently, with reports that overdose deaths have reached epidemic levels, and more newborn babies than ever are being born with painkiller addiction. But too many assume that these stats apply only to delinquent drug abusers who find loopholes in the medical system in order to get their kicks. Not so. Last week, we told the story of Karly Long, a 29-year-old who died of an overdose after becoming addicted to prescription drugs in the course of treating her mental illness. And yesterday, Business Insider published the shocking story of Bernie Mullen, a man who was injured in a crane accident and became addicted to painkillers—resulting, years later, in his own daughter being born with her own addiction, too. More »

Is Doctor Avoidance Causing America’s Obesity Problem?

Is Doctor Avoidance Causing America's Obesity Problem?

“It’s as unreasonable to say I didn’t quit smoking because my doctor didn’t tell me to as it is to say I didn’t lose weight because my doctor didn’t tell me to. Everybody knows you shouldn’t smoke, and everybody knows you should be at a healthy weight. It’s not a mystery.”
So Dr. Cynthia Ferrier told NPR in response to complaints that physicians don’t provide adequate weight loss advice, in spite of America’s overwhelming obesity problem. But many obese patients say they feel as if their doctors are uncomfortable discussing their weight, and surveys show that many overweight patients feel stigmatized by their doctors. More »

Functional Medicine: The Best Health Care for the Uninsured and Chronically Ill

Functional Medicine: The Best Health Care for the Uninsured and Chronically Ill

If you’re uninsured, doctors are your worst enemy: They may help your pesky cold disappear, but they’ll also wipe out your bank account, and may even hunt you down for more after that. But the M.D.s behind functional medicine aren’t after your money; nor do they want to send you to a specialist who is. They want to make you so healthy that you’ll hardly ever need health insurance again. These are doctors you want to be your friends.

So what is functional medicine? That was the topic of conversation for nearly five hours at a recent event hosted by New York’s Urbanzen Foundation, where a panel of experts led by Dr. Frank Lipman convinced a full house that we need to change a lot more about health care than just insurance. The field’s top advocates, practitioners, and researchers all offered their own explanations of what it is and why we should all care about it; even for them, it wasn’t easy to give a one-sentence explanation. Their definitions ranged from super-simple (“medicine that makes sense”) to radical (“disruptive technology that will overthrow the tyranny of the diagnosis”), but the gist is that functional medicine is a way of treating patients that reorients the focus away from symptoms of disease, towards its causes. More »