The Health News USA February 7 2018

  • According to a new Human Rights Watch report, nursing homes in the U.S. are administering antipsychotic drugs to tens of thousands of elderly residents each week who do not have the diagnoses for which the drugs are prescribed and who are not giving their “free and informed consent.”  In a report released Monday titled, “They Want Docile,” the group states that some 179,000 residents of long-term nursing homes across the country are given antipsychotic drugs each week that are not appropriate for their condition.
  • The former chief of the US CDC says the decision to cut 80% of its epidemic prevention activities overseas could pose a grave danger to the United States because it “would significantly increase the chance an epidemic will spread without our knowledge and endanger lives in our country and around the world.” The CDC informed personnel in the past 2 weeks that it was discontinuing its work in 39 out of 49 countries where its Center for Global Health helps prevent, detect and respond to dangerous infectious disease threats, such as Ebola and the Zika virus.
  • Some Philadelphia officials want to make history by pushing an effort to make the city the first in the U.S. to allow drug users to shoot up at a medically supervised facility. The city overdose-related deaths peaked last year to about 1,200. And city health officials want to cut down on the overdoses and deaths through this unique and controversial approach. The sites would give drug addicts a safe haven to shoot up and would offer sterile injection equipment, including needles, and Naloxone.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the 7th of February 2018. Read by Tabetha Moreto.

https://www.usnews.com/news/health-care-news/articles/2018-02-05/human-rights-watch-finds-nursing-homes-overmedicate-dementia-patients

According to a new Human Rights Watch report, nursing homes in the U.S. are administering antipsychotic drugs to tens of thousands of elderly residents each week who do not have the diagnoses for which the drugs are prescribed and who are not giving their “free and informed consent.”

In a report released Monday titled, “They Want Docile,” the group states that some one hundred seventy nine thousand residents of long-term nursing homes across the country are given antipsychotic drugs each week that are not appropriate for their condition. The report says the drugs are used for their sedating side effects, which make patients with dementia and Alzheimer’s disease easier to manage.
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The Guardian reported that antipsychotic drugs, developed to treat psychiatric conditions such as schizophrenia, come with significant warnings from the Food and Drug Administration called “black box” warnings because they call attention to the potential risk of death. The report suggested that the severity of those warnings and the heightened risk the drugs pose to dementia patients is not communicated to the patients or their loved ones.
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The report is based on publicly available data, visits to one hundred nine nursing facilities from October two thousand sixteen to March two thousand seventeen in California, Florida, Illinois, Kansas, New York and Texas, and three hundred twenty three interviews, including with those living in nursing facilities, nursing facility staff and long-term care and disability experts.

https://edition.cnn.com/2018/02/03/health/cdc-slashes-global-epidemic-programs-outrage/index.html

The former chief of the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says the decision to cut eighty percent of its epidemic prevention activities overseas could pose a grave danger to the United States because it “would significantly increase the chance an epidemic will spread without our knowledge and endanger lives in our country and around the world.”

The CDC informed personnel in the past two weeks that it was discontinuing its work in thirty nine out of forty nine countries where its Center for Global Health helps prevent, detect and respond to dangerous infectious disease threats, such as Ebola and the Zika virus. The agency said it was forced to make the decision because it doesn’t expect any new funding for the programs.

The cuts were first reported by The Wall Street Journal. The decision sparked outrage among an array of top health officials and organizations who said Congress and the Trump administration are leaving the nation vulnerable to an outbreak that could affect millions of Americans. Doctor Tom Frieden, director of the CDC from two thousand nine to two thousand seventeen said: “We can either help other countries stop disease outbreaks abroad or fight them here at home.”

Frieden, who has devoted much of his career to disease prevention, emphasized the potential danger of the move and he knows serves as president and CEO of the initiative Resolve to Save Lives.

The goal of the CDC’s Center for Global Health is to stop outbreaks at their source, long before they reach the United States. According to its website, the organization monitors 30 to 40 outbreaks in other countries every day, and it has trained more than ten thousand disease detectives in more than seventy countries.

http://www.foxnews.com/health/2018/02/05/philadelphia-aims-to-become-first-us-city-to-legalize-safe-injection-sites.html

Some Philadelphia officials want to make history by pushing an effort to make the city the first in the U.S. to allow drug users to shoot up at a medically supervised facility. The city overdose-related deaths peaked last year to about one thousand two hundred. And city health officials want to cut down on the overdoses and deaths through this unique and controversial approach.
….
The sites would give drug addicts a safe haven to shoot up and would offer sterile injection equipment, including needles, and Naloxone. It would also give referrals to treatment centers, social services clinics and wound care facilities. The idea comes as a paradigm shift in the nation’s effort to stem the tide of opioid-related deaths. Seattle and upstate New York have been among places that have mulled similar measures, but the efforts stalled because of either legal or bureaucratic hurdles.

The city’s decision to permit supervised drug usage parallels the nation’s marijuana legalization, where individual states have approved a practice that is illegal under federal law.

Unlike Seattle, Philadelphia does not plan to operate or pay for the proposed sites. Instead, it hopes to serve as the facilitator between the public and privately run facilities – bypassing city council approval and special zoning ordinances, and casting what some critics see as an irresponsible cattle call for investors.

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