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Scientists identify genes that may help predict steroid responsiveness in people with EoE

Scientists identify genes that may help predict steroid responsiveness in people with EoE

Results from a clinical trial show that high doses of the corticosteroid fluticasone propionate safely and effectively induce remission in many people with eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE), a chronic inflammatory disease of the esophagus characterized by high levels of white blood cells called eosinophils. [More]
National Drug Early Warning System to monitor emerging drug trends

National Drug Early Warning System to monitor emerging drug trends

An innovative National Drug Early Warning System (NDEWS) is being developed to monitor emerging trends that will help health experts respond quickly to potential outbreaks of illicit drugs such as heroin and to identify increased use of designer synthetic compounds. [More]
FDA approves Ruconest for treatment of acute attacks in adolescent patients with HAE

FDA approves Ruconest for treatment of acute attacks in adolescent patients with HAE

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration yesterday approved Ruconest, the first recombinant C1-Esterase Inhibitor product for the treatment of acute attacks in adult and adolescent patients with hereditary angioedema (HAE). [More]

Insurers seek rule change that would boost profits

The industry wants to exclude brokers' fees from being factored into administrative costs, which would reduce consumer refunds under the health law's so-called medical loss ratio rule. Currently, the rule requires plans in the small group market to spend at least 80 percent of premiums on medical costs and no more than 20 percent on administrative costs. [More]
Investigators identify gene that underlies devastating autoinflammatory condition in children

Investigators identify gene that underlies devastating autoinflammatory condition in children

Investigators have identified a gene that underlies a very rare but devastating autoinflammatory condition in children. Several existing drugs have shown therapeutic potential in laboratory studies, and one is currently being studied in children with the disease, which the researchers named STING-associated vasculopathy with onset in infancy (SAVI). [More]
HHS offers $100 million in funds for states Medicaid programs to improve payment systems

HHS offers $100 million in funds for states Medicaid programs to improve payment systems

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is offering the assistance in hopes that states will be able to streamline processes in ways that will ultimately lead to better patient care. [More]

Help wanted: CEO for hard-to-manage federal insurance website

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell is expected to name someone to oversee the operations of healthcare.gov to keep it from becoming a joke again on late night TV. Also in the news is an examination of the small business marketplaces. [More]

Feds scrutinize Medicaid backlogs in 7 states

Health and Human Services officials have demanded remediation plans from at least seven states -- California, Michigan, Tennessee, Missouri, Kansas, Georgia and Alaska -- to resolve application backlogs. [More]
NIH-funded study identifies genetic markers associated with eosinophilic esophagitis

NIH-funded study identifies genetic markers associated with eosinophilic esophagitis

Scientists funded by the National Institutes of Health have identified genetic markers associated with eosinophilic esophagitis (EoE), an inflammatory disease characterized by high levels of immune cells called eosinophils in the esophagus. [More]
BAI and Novartis determine whether investigational drugs can prevent symptoms of Alzheimer's

BAI and Novartis determine whether investigational drugs can prevent symptoms of Alzheimer's

Researchers from the Banner Alzheimer's Institute (BAI) today announced a partnership with Novartis in a pioneering medical trial to determine whether two investigational anti-amyloid drugs-an active immunotherapy and an oral medication-can prevent or delay the emergence of symptoms of Alzheimer's in people at particularly high risk for developing the disease at older ages. [More]
Research: Soluble corn fibre may enhance calcium absorption

Research: Soluble corn fibre may enhance calcium absorption

Around the globe, fibre and calcium intakes are below the levels recommended by experts contributing to potential long-term public health implications. New research, published this month in the British Journal of Nutrition, shows soluble corn fibre (SCF) may not simply boost fibre intake when added to foods, but can also increase the amount of beneficial bacteria present in the gut, while enhancing calcium absorption in adolescents. [More]

National Medicaid enrollment nears 7 million

The Obama administration released new enrollment figures showing 56 percent of those on the program are children. Meanwhile, Tennessee faces a deadline today for a plan to fix enrollment problems. [More]

NLC awards grants to eight cities to help enroll children, families in Medicaid and CHIP

To help implement local outreach efforts to enroll children and families in Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program, the National League of Cities today awarded grants and technical assistance to eight cities. [More]
Mississippi baby: Infant seemingly cured of HIV has detectable levels of HIV

Mississippi baby: Infant seemingly cured of HIV has detectable levels of HIV

The child known as the "Mississippi baby"-an infant seemingly cured of HIV that was reported as a case study of a prolonged remission of HIV infection in The New England Journal of Medicine last fall-now has detectable levels of HIV after more than two years of not taking antiretroviral therapy without evidence of virus, according to the pediatric HIV specialist and researchers involved in the case. [More]
Viewpoints: Turning to new legal challenges to ACA; is the law working?; Medicaid problems in N.C.

Viewpoints: Turning to new legal challenges to ACA; is the law working?; Medicaid problems in N.C.

The Supreme Court's term ended in June with another Affordable Care Act ruling, and the ACA survived largely unscathed. Burwell v. Hobby Lobby has important ramifications for women's health and religious freedom but does not invalidate a single section of the law. [More]
Baxter International acquires drug candidate developed to treat sickle cell disease

Baxter International acquires drug candidate developed to treat sickle cell disease

A drug candidate developed by researchers at the NIH's National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences and its collaborators to treat sickle cell disease has been acquired by Baxter International's BioScience business. [More]
HHS grant to support new model of care for patients with complex cancer

HHS grant to support new model of care for patients with complex cancer

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has announced a three-year grant to University Hospitals Case Medical Center Seidman Cancer Center totaling $4.7 million to support a new national model aimed at improving care for patients with complex cancer. [More]
First Edition: July 10, 2014

First Edition: July 10, 2014

Today's headlines cover health policy headlines from the marketplace, the campaign trail and regarding the health law's implementation. [More]
ECRI develops online version of ICRA for Healthcare Construction Activities training course

ECRI develops online version of ICRA for Healthcare Construction Activities training course

Renovation and construction projects in healthcare environments pose unique infection control challenges for contractors and workers. [More]
National Gay Blood Drive to take place on July 11, 2014

National Gay Blood Drive to take place on July 11, 2014

On Friday, July 11, the second annual nationwide National Gay Blood Drive (NGBD) will take place to raise public awareness and increase pressure on the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) to change its policy on the long-standing ban on blood donation by men who have had sex with other men (MSM) – a restriction that has been in place since 1983. [More]