Health

HealthServe is closing in Greensboro this week and 20,000 people will have to find a medical provider elsewhere.
Flickr.com

North Carolina is asking local health departments to work with people hired to give information about the Affordable Care Act. 

The Department of Health and Human Services sent a letter to every county last week, encouraging them to work with so-called health care navigators.  The federal government gave out about $3 million in grants to non-profits, hospitals and volunteers to hire navigators last month.

A new study finds that mothers who participated in a domestic violence awareness program were more likely to leave abusive relationships.
Ian D. Keating via Flickr, Creative Commons

    

One in four women in America will experience intimate partner violence in her lifetime according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

NEDtheband.com
NEDtheband.com / NEDtheband.com

  

While the pink ribbons of breast cancer garner considerable public attention, other, more deadly cancers affecting women fall far from the spotlight.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

State health officials have confirmed the first death from West Nile virus in North Carolina this year.   The Department of Health and Human Services says the victim was an adult in Wilson County.  Privacy rules do not allow the age, name or gender to be disclosed. 

UNC Health Care has opened a new mental hospital in Wake County after building repairs caused a two-month delay. 

The state's nursing homes and elder care facilities are improving, according to a new study.
SalFalko / Flickr

North Carolina has reduced its rate of antipsychotic drug use in nursing homes by 23 percent over the last year-- that's the highest such improvement rate in the country.

Many nursing homes and adult care homes have been known to use antipsychotic drugs to help calm and control residents who have dementia. But overmedication can cause all sorts of problems for patients who are so drugged they can't participate in activities and who might fall because the drugs impair their coordination. Bob Konrad is a professor in health policy at UNC-Chapel Hill's School of Public Health.

A Raleigh parent has filed a complaint with the Department of Justice after the local YMCA refused to admit his diabetic son. 

Bruce Hatcher says the after-school program is in violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act.  Hatcher says the YMCA rejected his son because it does not administer shots, which the boy needs if his glucose level gets too low.  The YMCA of the Triangle contracts with Wake County Public Schools to provide after-school care. Some religious organizations are exempt from the Americans with Disabilities Act.   

A Triangle live-in diet program once endorsed by celebrities and others seeking weight-loss results appears to be permanently closed.   The Rice Diet Center was once affiliated with Duke University before striking out on its own 11 years ago. 

Hollywood stars have been among those who traveled to Durham to embrace eating meals of mainly white rice and fruit in an effort to slim down. As more diet plans gained recognition, the Rice Diet lost favor and followers.  The center's current owner, Dr. Robert Rosati, was forced to close the program after 70 years.

Duke Health's Raleigh Hospital
Duke Medicine

A gathering in Durham today marks the launch of the Duke Institute for Health Innovation.  Leaders in healthcare, education and government will participate in the 'Summit on Transformative Innovation in Health Care.' 

A Duke doctor examines an elderly patient.
Duke Medecine

A health care community center opens today in Hoke County, a first for residents in that rural area. The center will offer a range of services from mental health and substance abuse counseling to family medicine and preventive care. The facility is being operated by the Robeson Health Care Corporation. The company's Marlo Fulmore says the center will cater primarily to low-income residents.

Dr. Leslie Smith speaks on the State of Things.
boonesunriserotary.org

This episode was a rebroadcast.  The program originally aired on Monday, February 25, 2013.

When Leslie Smith was 24 years old, she was in a fire. After spending 3 months at the Jaycee Burn Center in Chapel Hill, she was released. Smith told Host Frank Stasio “It took me about ten years to recover from those injuries.”

A supermarket in Durham is going to offer healthy snacks in the check out line.
Tijmen Stam via Creative Commons

Shoppers at a local grocery in Durham will have the option of checking out at an aisle filled with healthy snack choices. So instead of lollipops and candy bars, last minute purchases at Los Primos Market might include apples, raisins or yogurt. Erica Samoff coordinates Partnership for a Healthy Durham, a community coalition that's collaborating with the East Durham Children's Initiative.

Duke released a new study that looks at the high depression rate in clergy members.
public domain

A new study from Duke shows that clergy have a higher rate of anxiety and depression than the national average. The study, conducted by the Clergy Health Initiative at Duke Divinity School, surveyed all United Methodist Clergy in North Carolina and found that their depression rate was 8.7 percent, which is higher than the national average of 5.5 percent. Anxiety rates were 13.5 percent.

Actress Gabourey Sidibe has spoken openly about her obesity and how people perceive her because of it.
Greg Hernandez via Creative Commons

New research out of Duke University suggests merely maintaining weight, instead of losing it, is a more practical and successful approach for African American women. Lead author Gary Bennett is associate professor of psychology and neuroscience at Duke. He says pre-menopausal black women have the highest rates of obesity in the country. About 80 percent are overweight, which contributes to a disproportionate risk for chronic diseases like diabetes, stroke, and cancer.

Protesters take a stand for abortion and women's rights at a Moral Mondays protest.
Matthew Lenard

The Department of Health and Human Services found health code violations this summer at two North Carolina clinics that provide abortions. Now, one of them has closed for good, while the other has re-opened.

flu shot
samantha celera, via Flickr, Creative Commons

Workers at state DHHS healthcare facilities are being required to get flu shots.  Secretary Aldona Vos  is implementing the policy to fall in line with what some hospitals have done to protect patients' health. 

More than 10,000 employees and volunteers will have until December first to be vaccinated.  Luckey Welsh is interim director of the DHHS division of state-operated facilities that house mentally and developmentally disabled patients.

A new study finds that mothers who participated in a domestic violence awareness program were more likely to leave abusive relationships.
Ian D. Keating via Flickr, Creative Commons

Mothers who completed a mandated domestic violence program were more likely to end abusive relationships. That’s according to new research out from the School of Social Work at UNC-Chapel Hill. The study looked at mothers who were mandated by courts or child services to take a 13-week program and learn methods on, parenting, self-advocacy and safety.

A new study looks at the availability of caloric information from fast food restaurants online.
jasonlam via Flickr, Creative Commons

Many of the nation's largest restaurants chains are making calorie information available on menus online, according to new research out of Duke University. Part of the Affordable Care Act mandates the information be provided on all in-store menus for chains with more than 20 stores. Lead author of the study Gary Bennett is an associate professor psychology, neuroscience, and global Health at Duke, and he says there are huge variations on how caloric and other nutritional content is presented to consumers.

Blue Cross Blue Shield NC campus.
Blue Cross Blue Shield NC

Insurance provider BlueCross BlueShield of North Carolina is expanding retail locations as the federal government prepares to launch the state's health care exchange. 

Duke University Hospital
Duke Medecine

  

Parents of teenagers with mental illnesses struggle to find appropriate care. When those adolescents also have developmental disabilities, they often end up in a cycle of psychiatric treatment that keeps them in residential facilities far from their homes.

Host Frank Stasio talks with News and Observer reporter Mandy Locke about a story of one family facing these challenges and the state’s resources for treatment.

N.C. State researchers are using North Carolina's tomato plants as a case study to understand how Salmonella affects crops.
USDA Natural Resources Conservation Service

Researchers at North Carolina State University are searching for Salmonella in North Carolina's tomato crops.  The bacteria causes salmonellosis, a disease that can range from uncomfortable to deadly, and tomatoes in Florida and Virginia have been the sources of outbreaks. Despite North Carolina's close proximity and similar climate, local tomatoes have been safe from the pathogen. A team of scientists from N.C. State's College of Agriculture and Life Sciences is investigating why.

HealthServe is closing in Greensboro this week and 20,000 people will have to find a medical provider elsewhere.
Flickr.com

The closing of the Healthserve Community Health Clinic in Greensboro is expected to affect thousands of low income patients. The clinic is closing, in part, because of the State legislature’s decision to reject federal Medicaid expansion. Host Frank Stasio talks to WUNC Greensboro Bureau Chief Jeff Tiberii about this and other Triad news live from Triad Stage in Greensboro.

A Duke doctor examines a pregnant woman.
Duke Medecine

Researchers at Duke University say they've found evidence that inducing or augmenting labor could increase an infant's risk of autism. 

A study of more than 600,000 births shows boys were 35 percent more likely to have autism if labor was both induced and augmented.  The risk was also elevated for girls, but at a lower rate.

Two Ob/GYN doctors review test results.
Mercy Health

Members of a Raleigh-based community medical organization say a new study shows a transitional care program they launched has cut hospital re-admissions by 20 percent. 

A wrecked car in Mecklenburg County, which had the highest total number of fatal crashes in 2012.
W. Robert Howell via creative commons

For the third year in a row, the same four counties have topped AAA Carolinas’ list of North Carolina’s most dangerous counties for car collisions. Pitt, New Hanover, Person and Watauga Counties were ranked the four most dangerous, all averaging over 250 car crashes per 100 million vehicle miles traveled. Pitt County has topped the list for five straight years.

Two Ob/GYN doctors review test results.
Mercy Health

Medicare patients who are frequently admitted to hospitals are beginning to cause extra fees for those facilities. 

Sunburnt feet after a kayaking trip.
Laura Brunow

New research out of Duke University could put an end to painful sunburns. Scientists have discovered a way to block TRP-V-4, a skin molecule responsible for the redness and pain following prolonged sun exposure.

"Like reddening, formation of soreness and blisters... influx of blood, inflammatory cells, of cells that make itch," said Wolfgang Liedtke, a neurobiology professor at Duke. "That is the tissue injury response down to the level of non-visible."

HealthServe is closing in Greensboro this week and 20,000 people will have to find a medical provider elsewhere.
Flickr.com

An estimated 20,000 patients will be affected by the closing of a health clinic in Greensboro later this month.  HealthServe provides care for people who are low-income, and have little or insufficient health insurance. The clinic began as a volunteer effort by local doctors in the 1990s. HealthServe has lost funding from the County and Moses Cone Hospital. The State’s recent decision to not expand Medicaid was the third strike.

The pink ribbon is a symbol for breast cancer awareness.
TipsTimes

UNC- Chapel Hill and Duke researchers will share national grant money to further breast cancer studies. Ten programs at the schools will get $3.6 million from the Susan G. Komen Foundation. The research will investigate causes and develop vaccines.

Pam Kohl, the director of Komen's Triangle to the Coast affiliate, says this funding can be as important to scientists as it is to patients. Kohl points to Komen Scholar Kimberly Blackwell of Duke as one of those who benefited.

The White House

The state Department of Insurance has approved subsidized health care plans that will be available under the Affordable Care Act.

Several details of the plans remain sealed as trade secrets, including rates, deductibles and how many were approved.  Marni Schribman of the state Insurance Department says the plans will be part of North Carolina's health care exchange, which is scheduled to launch in October.

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