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Powerful Hurricane Harvey Makes Landfall in Texas Print E-mail
Written by FHI's Week in Review   
Monday, 28 August 2017 16:15

Nicole Chavez, Eric Levenson and Steve Almasy report, in an August 25, 2017 CNN post:

Hurricane Harvey made landfall Friday night between Port Aransas and Port O'Connor, Texas, as a Category 4 storm with winds of 130 mph, the National Hurricane Center said.
According to CNN:
The storm is pounding the Texas coast and its millions of residents with hurricane-force winds knocking down trees, power poles and signs, and with torrential rain deluging streets...Harvey is the first Category 4 hurricane to make landfall in the United States since Hurricane Charley in 2004...President Donald Trump, who will visit the area next week, has signed a disaster declaration for the state.
"Texas is about to have a very significant disaster," said Brock Long, director of the Federal Emergency Management Agency.

Read more in the current issue of Week in Review>> 
Last Updated on Friday, 15 September 2017 08:15
Proposed Opioid Bill Ensures Patient Privacy While Helping MDs Make Rx Decisions Print E-mail
Written by Vitale Health Law   
Tuesday, 15 August 2017 18:28

An estimated one-in-three Americans had a prescription for opioids in 2015 and that number continues to grow. With that growth has come a startling increase in the number of overdose deaths.

The National Center for Health Statistics reported that overdose deaths hit a record 19.9 per 100,000 population in the third quarter of 2016, up from 16.7 for the same three months in 2015.

U.S. Reps. Tim Murphy (R-PA) and Earl Blumenaur (D-OR) have introduced legislation that would allow physicians to gain access to a patient's complete medical records - including their addiction treatment history - before making any prescribing decisions.

Dubbed the Overdose Prevention and Patient Safety (OPPS) Act, H.R. 3545 would amend the 42 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 2, known simply as "Part 2." that prevents doctors from reviewing their patients' histories of addiction treatment before prescribing opioids and other drugs.

Last Updated on Monday, 04 September 2017 12:14
Remarkable Increases in Alcohol Use Print E-mail
Written by FHI's Week in Review   
Monday, 14 August 2017 16:59

Bridget F. Grant, PhD, S. Patricia Chou, PhD, Tulshi D. Saha, PhD, et al report on American alcohol use in an August 9, 2017 JAMA Psychiatry post. The authors studied 12-month prevalence of alcohol use, high-risk drinking, and DSM-IV alcohol use disorder between 2001-2002 and 2012-2013. According to the authors:

In this study of data from face-to-face interviews conducted in 2 nationally representative surveys of U.S. adults, including the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions and the National Epidemiologic Survey on Alcohol and Related Conditions III, 12-month alcohol use (up 11.2%), high-risk drinking (up 29.9%), and DSM-IV alcohol use disorder (up 49.4%) increased for the total U.S. population and, with few exceptions, across socio-demographic subgroups.

Read more in the current issue of Week in Review>>

Last Updated on Friday, 15 September 2017 07:52
Data Breaches Have Not Slowed Down in 2017 Print E-mail
Written by FHI's Week in Review   
Monday, 07 August 2017 17:44

Evan Sweeney reports for Fierce Healthcare on Aug 3, 2017:

If 2016 was a banner year for healthcare data breaches, 2017 is on pace to be just as bad, if not worse.

According to Mr. Sweeney:

Statistics compiled by several outlets paint a bleak picture of data security across the industry. A midyear report published by Protenus counted 233 breach incidents reported to the Department of Health and Human Services, on pace to exceed last year's total of 450...Healthcare was one of the hardest hit industries in the country during the first six months of the year...Hacking and ransomware attacks have grabbed headlines in recent months... <but> insider threats still play a predominate roll in healthcare breaches. According to Protenus, 41% of data breaches in 2017 were tied to insider error or wrongdoing.

Read more in the current issue of Week in Review>>
CRISPR fixes disease gene in viable human embryos Print E-mail
Written by Heidi Ledford | Nature   
Friday, 04 August 2017 14:54

An international team of researchers has used CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing - a technique that allows scientists to make precise changes to genomes with relative ease - to correct a disease-causing mutation in dozens of viable human embryos. The study represents a significant improvement in efficiency and accuracy over previous efforts.

The researchers targeted a mutation in a gene called MYBPC3. Such mutations cause the heart muscle to thicken - a condition known as hypertrophic cardiomyopathy that is the leading cause of sudden death in young athletes. The mutation is dominant, meaning that a child need inherit only one copy of the mutated gene to experience its effects.

Last Updated on Monday, 28 August 2017 16:15
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