The Mayor’s Health Line’s weekly roundup of news stories:

Posted on June 14, 2010


For Heart Attack, Prevention Strategies Seem To Work
Time, Tiffany O’Callaghan, 06/10/2010
A large scale study of Kaiser Permanente health policy holders in Northern California shows that hospital admissions for heart attack dropped significantly between 1999 and 2008 — coinciding with the implementation of public health efforts such as smoking bans, lowered target levels for blood pressure and cholesterol and more widespread use of preventive medications such as statins, beta blockers and aspirin regimes.

Everett Board Bans Sale of Tobacco In Drugstores
Boston Globe, John Laidler, 06/10/2010
Starting next week, smokers will find it a little less convenient to pick up a pack of cigarettes in Everett. Hoping to deliver another blow against smoking, the Board of Health on May 24 voted unanimously to ban the sale of tobacco products in pharmacies.

EDITORIAL: A Call to Action on Health Disparities
The Baltimore Sun, Brian D. Smedley, 06/09/2010
Most parents would be dismayed to see their child come home with a “D” on their report card. They would want to know how they and the school can work together to improve the child’s scholastic performance. With the announcement that the Baltimore City Health Department has given the very same grade to the city’s efforts to reduce health inequities, will residents demand accountability, involvement and improvement?

Waiter, There’s a Potential Carcinogen in My Soup
Reuters, Ernest Scheyder, 06/09/2010
Four years ago, just after giving birth to her second child, the stay-at-home mom heard about BPA, a chemical inside some plastics that can leach into water or food slowly over time, potentially causing serious health problems like cancer. Unwilling to take any risks, she ran to Babies “R” Us, which had a program to exchange baby bottles containing BPA, and walked out with $100 in rebates.

Bringing Comparison Shopping to the Doctor’s Office
New York Times, Claire Cain Miller, 06/11/2010
Americans rarely compare prices on their health care.

Health-Care Reform to Help Some Soon
Chicago Sun-Times, Francine Knowles, 06/11/2010
Nearly one million U.S. workers will be able to take early advantage of the health-care reform law that extends health insurance coverage to adult children up to age 26, a new Hewitt Associates survey finds.

Health Reform’s Long-Term Care Option
SmartMoney, Lisa Scherzer, 06/11/2010
Tucked into the health reform legislation that passed in March is a national voluntary insurance program for purchasing long-term-care services.

Democrats Launch Push to Promote Obama Health Law
Reuters, John Whitesides, 06/11/2010
Democrats launched a new push on Thursday to promote U.S. President Barack Obama’s healthcare overhaul, as the first $250 rebates were mailed to seniors to help plug gaps in Medicare prescription drug coverage.

The Affordable Care Act is Good at Being the Affordable Care Act
Washington Post Ezra Klein (blog), Ezra Klein, 06/11/2010
An e-mail this morning from the Obama administration said that “an important new study from the Rand Corporation published in Health Affairs finds that the Affordable Care Act was the preferred policy option for covering more Americans and controlling costs.”