Health Care

FDA panel backs COVID-19 booster shots only for elderly and high-risk Americans

BY: - September 17, 2021

WASHINGTON — A federal health advisory panel wrestled Friday with whether to widely authorize a booster dose of Pfizer’s two-shot COVID-19 vaccine for most Americans, ultimately recommending that a third dose be offered only to older or higher-risk individuals. The Biden administration had hoped states could begin rolling out a wide national booster shot campaign […]

Republican AGs urge Biden administration to give up on vaccine requirements

BY: - September 17, 2021

WASHINGTON — Two dozen Republican state attorneys general are threatening to sue the Biden administration over its mandate that large employers require their employees to either be vaccinated against the coronavirus or undergo weekly testing. In a Thursday letter, the 24 AGs pushed the administration to remove the requirement that would affect nearly 80 million Americans […]

How House Democrats would expand Medicare and Medicaid and lower prescription drug costs

BY: - September 16, 2021

WASHINGTON — New Medicare benefits for older Americans, like dental care. An expansion of eligibility for Medicaid for low-income people in Republican-controlled states that have declined to take that step. And potentially an historic effort to rein in prescription drug prices — if congressional Democrats can work through objections from moderates in their party. The massive […]

Putting on pandemic pounds: State obesity rates hit all-time highs

BY: - September 15, 2021

WASHINGTON — The number of states with high obesity among residents has nearly doubled since 2018, according to new data Wednesday from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. There were 16 states that had obesity rates among adult residents of at least 35% last year, with Iowa, Ohio, Delaware and Texas on that list for […]

Biden administration announces ‘comprehensive’ plan to fix high drug prices

BY: - September 13, 2021

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has issued its plan to address high drug prices as part of President Joe Biden’s push to take on anticompetitive practices across the economy. But while it addressed in detail abusive practices by drugmakers, it was a lot more superficial about the practices of much-larger corporations that […]

COVID-19 vaccines or weekly tests to be mandated for millions of U.S. workers

BY: - September 9, 2021

WASHINGTON — More than 80 million employees of private businesses in the U.S. will be required to get vaccinated against COVID-19 or undergo weekly testing as part of the Biden administration’s latest strategy for combating the still-surging coronavirus pandemic. The upcoming vaccine rule for companies with at least 100 employees is one plank of an increasingly […]

Patients from Texas overwhelm New Mexico abortion funds

BY: - September 8, 2021

Abortion rights and health care access advocates in New Mexico described a sense of heaviness as they took an influx of calls from people seeking abortion services in the fallout of last week’s U.S. Supreme Court order. In a one-paragraph, unsigned order issued just before midnight on Wednesday, Sept. 1, the court did not strike […]

In court, drug middlemen fight to limit pharmacies insured patients can use

BY: - September 7, 2021

In the first test of a 2020 U.S. Supreme Court ruling, drug middlemen last week argued that federal law gives them a crucial right to limit which pharmacies patients with health insurance can use — or at least make it more expensive if patients get their medicine at a shop that isn’t preferred by the […]

14 Iowa nursing homes now in outbreak status, state says

BY: - September 3, 2021

There are at least 14 Iowa nursing homes with COVID-19 outbreaks this week, according to the Iowa Department of Public Health, and the total number of infections associated with those outbreaks stands at 98. Just three weeks ago, there were only two Iowa nursing homes in outbreak status. Although state officials do not provide separate […]

Vaccine clinics planned for Iowans with disabilities

BY: - September 2, 2021

Disability Rights Iowa is staging two vaccine clinics geared specifically to people with disabilities. People with disabilities face higher risks related to COVID-19 than the general population. A study published in March by researchers at Thomas Jefferson University looked at more than 64 million patients and found that having an intellectual disability was the single […]

State waives training requirements for nursing home staff

BY: - September 1, 2021

The state of Iowa has agreed to temporarily waive training requirements for nurse aides who deliver much of the hands-on care in nursing homes. The waivers were issued by the director of the Iowa Department of Inspections and Appeals two weeks ago in response to a request from industry lobbyists. They will be in effect […]

Former Marshalltown doctor faces new medical-board charges

BY: - August 31, 2021

The Iowa Board of Medicine is accusing a former Marshalltown physician of violating a board order. The board says Dr. Richard L. Dowell, a 55-year-old Iowa licensed physician who now practices obstetrics and gynecology in Kansas City, Mo., “violated a lawful order of the board” and that a disciplinary hearing shall be scheduled in the […]