Opinion writers focus on these health topics and others.
The Hill: Patients In VA Nursing Homes Are Suffering — Wilkie Needs To Take Responsibility
According to Richard Mollot, the executive director of the Long Term Community Care Coalition, bedsores, a condition that results from being in the same position for too long, are “almost always preventable and quickly treatable . . . so there’s just no excuse.” So, when veterans at VA nursing homes were recently discovered to be suffering from a plethora of preventable problems, such as bedsores, what did VA do? They provided an excuse, of course.(Rory E. Riley-Topping, 4/4)
The New York Times: Donald Trump Is Trying To Kill You
There’s a lot we don’t know about the legacy Donald Trump will leave behind. And it is, of course, hugely important what happens in the 2020 election. But one thing seems sure: Even if he’s a one-term president, Trump will have caused, directly or indirectly, the premature deaths of a large number of Americans. Some of those deaths will come at the hands of right-wing, white nationalist extremists, who are a rapidly growing threat, partly because they feel empowered by a president who calls them “very fine people.” (Paul Krugman, 4/4)
The Washington Post: Talking Openly About Police Suicide Is An Important And Long-Overdue First Step
This week, there was an extraordinary gathering in an auditorium on the ground floor of the New York Police Department headquarters in Lower Manhattan. In that one room sat more than 300 police chiefs and other law enforcement officials from across the country and as far away as Australia and Northern Ireland. They were there to discuss a leading cop killer: suicide. For eight hours, they took a raw and honest look at both the forces that drive officers to this most desperate of acts and the dilemmas they face in dealing with it. (Karen Tumulty, 4/4)
Stat: Overdose Prevention Sites Can Help Save Lives
In the late 1980s and early 1990s, cities struggling with the AIDS crisis began considering a then-radical idea: give drug users sterile needles and syringes so they wouldn’t spread HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. Underlying the idea was the acceptance that some drug use was inevitable and a belief that this kind of program could reduce its harms. Opponents saw it as declaring defeat. Syringe exchange programs, they said, would only encourage drug use, worsening the HIV epidemic. But cities like Philadelphia, where I now work, were desperate for solutions, so they opened syringe exchange programs anyway. We face a similar situation today with the opioid crisis. (Thomas Farley, 4/5)
NPR: Online Medicine On-Demand Sounds Easy, But There’s A Downside
If you’re on Instagram or if you’ve taken the New York City subway lately, chances are you’ve heard of Hims, the men’s health and wellness company with a penchant for advertisements featuring suggestive cacti and eggplants against pastel backgrounds. The Web-based startup targets the young male demographic with skin care products, multivitamins and erectile dysfunction medications. In January, just a few months after its first birthday, the company joined Silicon Valley’s vaunted “unicorn” club: It received a venture-capital investment that put its valuation at $ 1 billion. (Vishal Khetpal, 4/4)
New England Journal of Medicine: Pharmacologic Research In Pregnant Women — Time To Get It Right
Facilitating inclusion of pregnant women in clinical research could help answer important questions about the effects of medication use during pregnancy and the ways in which pregnancy alters pharmacokinetics and drug effects. (Ahizechukwu C. Eke, Kelly E. Dooley and Jeanne S. Sheffield, 4/3)
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.