A review of data from 22 studies found women who had a stroke had poorer outcomes, more limitations on activity and worse health-related quality of life, compared with men, researchers reported in the journal Stroke. Cognitive impairment did not seem to be worse among women than men.
Researchers evaluated CMS claims data on more than 15 million older patients with diabetes with and without malnutrition and found that those with malnutrition were at an increased risk of dying from acute myocardial infarction, chronic kidney disease, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorder, heart failure, ischemic heart disease and stroke or transient ischemic attack than those without malnutrition. The findings in the BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care also revealed that median survival times for adults with malnutrition was 2.38 years, compared with 5.08 years among older adults without nutrition deficiencies.
The American Academy of Pediatrics issued an updated pediatric vaccination schedule in Pediatrics that includes an optional third dose of measles, mumps and rubella vaccine during a mumps outbreak for at-risk youths as well as a recommendation that adolescents ages 11 to 12 and those older than 15 should receive two and three human papillomavirus vaccine doses, respectively. The schedule also includes changes in the catch-up doses for those who began late or are more than a month behind in immunizations.
An America's Health Insurance Plans study of employer-sponsored health plan claims data from 2009 to 2013 found that 25% of initial opioid prescriptions surpassed the CDC's recommended dosage, while 57% of prescriptions for acute pain exceeded the recommended duration of three days. The study also found that only 1% of patients received a urine drug test before getting an opioid prescription, and more than 40% of patients with chronic pain were prescribed both an opioid and benzodiazepine, which the CDC does not recommend.
A study in Pharmacoepidemiology & Drug Safety found around 15% of adults using nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs were taking the drugs at a higher daily dose than the maximum recommended dose, raising their risk for heart attacks, internal bleeding and other serious side effects. The findings, based on 1,326 ibuprofen users who completed an online daily medication diary for a week, showed 16% used ibuprofen daily, 55% took the drug at least three days a week and 37% used at least one other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drug during the week.
A study published in the CDC's Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report found that African-Americans with HIV infections are less likely to receive life-saving treatment, with less than 41% attaining sustained viral suppression compared with 56% of whites and 50% of Hispanics. The study was based on 2014 surveillance data involving over 650,000 people with HIV infections in 37 states and the District of Columbia.
The proportion of medical spending attributed to obesity-related illness in adults in the US rose from 6.13% in 2001 to 7.91% in 2015 and varied from state to state, researchers reported in the journal Clinical Chemistry. Obesity-related illnesses accounted for 5% to 6% of total medical expenditures in Arizona, California, Florida and New York, and more than 12% in North Carolina, Ohio and Wisconsin, the researchers reported.
President Donald Trump signed a two-year agreement passed by Congress early this morning that provides funding for the federal government through March 23, ending a short government shutdown triggered when the midnight deadline passed. The legislation provides money to combat the opioid crisis and further extend funding for the Children's Health Insurance Program.
Nearly 11.8 million people enrolled in Affordable Care Act health insurance plans in 2018, according to an Associated Press count, 3% fewer than last year. The Trump administration, which has worked to repeal the law, did not comment on the figures and said it will release an official tally next month.
FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb says agency staff is working with health care providers and the patient community to craft an opioid-drug policy that does not restrict access by patients with a legitimate need for the drugs while discouraging inappropriate prescribing and use. He also said the FDA will soon release a "comprehensive plan to promote competition and availability of biosimilars," and he noted that a staffing shortage might slow progress on other initiatives.
The AANP annual election will open on March 15. To give AANP members time to review the qualifications of the candidates who will be on the 2018 ballot, the slate is now posted. Please take time to review the information provided. Although the slate is closed for 2018, this is also a good time to think about the organization and how you might be able to contribute by running for elected office in the future. The election opens on March 15 and closes at 11:59 p.m. Pacific Time on March 31. AANP members who are eligible to vote in this election will be notified electronically when the ballot opens. Thank you for participating in this very important process.