Governor David Paterson signed a law into effect that will add more consumer protections when health insurers discontinue a class of policies. The bill requires a written notice of discontinuations to all insured individuals covered by a group plan at least 90 days before the discontinuation date. Insurers will have to notify affected policyholders of their options and they cannot discontinue a group plan to drop a lone high-cost policyholder from the plan.
The California Nurses Association is suing a San Francisco hospital, claiming discrimination because managers refused to hire Filipino nurses. The suit was filed Thursday against Sacramento-based Sutter Health and the company's California Pacific Medical Center. Union leaders and Filipino activists in the Bay Area also want the San Francisco Human Rights Commission to investigate the discrimination claims.
A gender-specific total knee prosthesis was developed to more closely match the anatomy of the female knee, aiming to be a better fit resulting in better outcomes for women. However, a recent study in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery found that 85 women who received a gender-specific implant in one knee and a standard prosthesis in the other knee found no clinical benefits of the gender-specific knee.
A pediatric urologist at UT Southwestern Medical Center has pioneered a successful surgical procedure for young girls who have absent or malformed vaginas, a condition that affects about one in 4,000 females. Unknown causes and certain genetic disorders can cause girls to be born with these defects, along with others that can accompany the vaginal problems, including an abnormal neck, an absent or malformed uterus and fallopian tubes, absent kidneys and abnormal external genitals.
Sandy Cohen, AP Celebrity plastic surgeon Dr. Frank Ryan, who made headlines for performing multiple surgeries on reality TV star Heidi Montag, has died. He was 50 years old. The California Highway Patrol says Ryan's 1995 Jeep Wrangler went off the side of Pacific Coast Highway near Malibu and landed on its roof Monday afternoon.
Marilynn Marchione, AP Cancer is the world's top economic killer as well as its likely leading cause of death, the American Cancer Society contends in a new report it will present at a global cancer conference in China. Cancer costs more in productivity and lost life than AIDS, malaria, the flu and other diseases that spread person-to-person, the report concludes.
Contradicting previous study results, insertion of a sponge that contains the antibiotic gentamicin at the time of surgical closure following cardiac surgery did not reduce the rate of sternal wound infections after three months, compared to patients who did not receive the intervention, according to a study in JAMA .
A prediction score that includes factors such as age, blood pressure, and heart and respiratory rate has been developed for patients who received out-of-hospital emergency care associated with the development of a critical illness during their hospitalization. This could include complications such as severe sepsis, the need for mechanical ventilation or death.
Alina Wolfe Murray, AP A fourth baby died Tuesday and seven remained in critical condition following a fire at a Bucharest maternity hospital. Authorities launched an investigation to determine what caused the blaze late Monday at Giulesti maternity hospital. The accident provoked a wave of public indignation, throwing light on Romania's poorly funded and understaffed health system.
Bariatric surgery appears to be associated with reduced use of medications and lower health care costs among patients with type 2 diabetes, according to a report in the August issue of Archives of Surgery . “From an epidemiological standpoint, once these diseases develop they are rarely reversed.
The humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders performed close to 20,000 procedures in resource-limited settings between 2001 and 2008, with an operative death rate of only 0.2 percent, suggesting surgical care can be provided safely in these circumstances with appropriate minimum standards and protocols, according to a report in the August issue of Archives of Surgery .
Seniors who received home care after discharge from the hospital for partial hip surgery (hemiarthroplasty) were 43 percent less likely to die in the three months following the procedure, found a study published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal . However, less than 16 percent of elderly patients discharged home after partial hip surgery in the study group received home care.
Medtronic, Inc. and Osteotech, Inc. have signed a definitive agreement under which Medtronic will acquire Osteotech for $6.50 per share in cash of Osteotech common stock. The total value of the transaction is expected to be approximately $123 million. Osteotech is a leader in the growing field of biologic products for regenerative healing, and has pioneered several technology platforms, including the Grafton® demineralized bone matrix, which has a growing body of evidence supporting its bone-generating capabilities.
Ivan Moreno, AP A Colorado hospital said that it has temporarily suspended live donor liver transplants while it investigates the death of a South Dakota man who donated part of his liver to his brother. The death would be Colorado's first of a live liver donor and the fourth in the country if it's ruled it was a result of the procedure, according to the United Network of Organ Sharing.
Stephen Singer, AP Finding investors in a weak economy is never easy, but John Marano hopes a new Connecticut tax credit will persuade some to take a chance with his medical equipment manufacturing company. Marano, president and CEO of Vascular Insights, which manufactures and sells equipment to treat varicose veins without surgery, anesthesia and hospital stays, said he's looking to the new state tax credit to attract more investors to the company.