Angelina Jolie’s candor boosts awareness about cancer
Seattle cancer experts praised the actress’ recent revelation that she had followed up a preventive double mastectomy with removal of her ovaries and fallopian tubes because of her genetic risk. “Celebrity can be used for a great deal of good,” Dr. Elizabeth Swisher, a University of Washington Medicine women’s cancer specialist, told The Seattle Times. “I do think Angelina Jolie was able to do that for the need to understand your genetic risk and act proactively about it.”
TB rates in Seattle area higher than US average
Last year, 100 people in King County had active tuberculosis, Public Health – Seattle & King County reports. That number is relatively stable – and is the lowest recorded TB rate for the county.
Savor coffee, not booze, to avoid liver cancer
An international panel has concluded that about three drinks a day is a “convincing cause” of liver cancer, The Seattle Times reports. The good news for this caffeine-drenched region is that drinking coffee may protect people from the disease.
Politicians debate changes to Children’s Health Insurance Program
With the federal-state Children’s Health Insurance Program slated to run out of money on Sept. 30, advocates say more than 2 million of the 8 million kids covered by the program could wind up uninsured. While politicians debate renewing funding, some of them argue for changes to the program, Stateline reports.
Ebola: What clinicians need to know
Infection control and triage
Using proper infection control measures is crucial for preventing transmission of infectious diseases. Serious communicable diseases such as MERS and Ebola virus disease are making headlines, and flu season is looming. It’s crucial that appropriate infection control precautions are taken on a daily basis for every patient.
To protect your health care workers and patients from infectious diseases in health care settings:
- Review and ensure implementation of proper infection control procedures during all stages of the patient encounter;
- Review triage protocols for early identification to trigger appropriate infection control response; and,
- Take extra steps specifically for Ebola.
Resources for physicians
- Complete infection control guidance from the CDC
- A health care provider preparedness checklist for Ebola
- Department of Health’s key messages for providers regarding Ebola
- Department of Health’s guidance for safe handling of human remains of Ebola patients in the U.S.
Resources for patients
- Department of Health Ebola overview for patients
- Department of Health Ebola fact sheet (available in English, Spanish, Chinese, Korean, Russian, Somali, Ukrainian and Vietnamese)
- Patient resources for your practice on Ebola from the CDC
- CDC travel advisory
- Ebola facts (color pdf poster) from U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
News and other resources
- Medscape’s Ebola resource center
- Washington State Department of Health’s Ebola virus disease information for public health and health care providers
- American Medical Association’s Ebola resource center
- Washington State Hospital Association’s Ebola resources for hospitals and the public
- Washington State Nurses Association’s Ebola resources for registered nurses
News on Ebola
Increasing regulation and awareness around the causes and effects of sports-related concussions is leading to greater safety among young athletes. Physicians Leah G. Concannon and Stanley A. Herring of the Seattle Sports Concussion Program explore the latest developments in youth concussion management in their Bulletin article PreventableTragedies. Click here to download the article.
Check out the latest addition to our Practice Resources: tips for how to make appropriate use of social media from the Washington State Department of Health, Federation of State Medical Boards and more.
The open enrollment period for health coverage under the Washington State Healthplanfinder is Nov. 15, 2014 to Feb. 15, 2015. Individuals may qualify for special enrollment periods outside of the open enrollment dates, depending on their circumstances. For those who qualify for Medicaid/Apple Health, enrollment is ongoing. Or if your life situation changes, you may be able to enroll in a subsidized plan.
What’s new this enrollment season? Many things, but here are two you should know about:
- Coverage renewals: Individuals who enrolled in a plan last year will need to renew their coverage during open enrollment. There are new options available this enrollment season and everyone — even those whose coverage was automatically renewed — is encouraged to review their plan and not just assume the one they had last year remains the most affordable one for them.
- Opportunity for small businesses to get coverage: King County small businesses will now be able to purchase coverage for their employees through Healthplanfinder. (Previously, only individuals in King County could purchase coverage.) The Washington Health Benefit Exchange offers information for employers.
King County’s website on health coverage has information on enrollment events in the county, how to get assistance with enrollment, and a Q&A about the new enrollment and renewal process. It will be updated regularly throughout the enrollment season. To find out more about how and where to enroll, consult Public Health – Seattle & King County’s enrollment event calendar.
More information can be found at Washington Health Benefit Exchange.
Visit our Education and Events page to learn more about:
- Upcoming Continuing Medical Education opportunities throughout the Seattle-King County region; and
- Free access to Heal-WA, an online medical library featuring tool kits, calculators, dictionaries, electronic textbooks, and journals.
- Health On The Hill: No Senate ‘Doc Fix’ Vote Before Recess. Will Break Hurt Chances?
- Viewpoints: Why ‘Doc Fix’ Deal Was Done; Health Care Leaders Must Lead Change
- Research Roundup: Effects Of Ending CHIP; Measuring Churn; Kids And Antipsychotic Drugs
- State Highlights: Md., Va. State Budgets Advance; Wis. SeniorCare Proposal Stalls
- Your NEJM Group Today: Sciatica Review, Angelina Jolie's Salpingo-Oophorectomy, New York EM and FM Opportunities (FREE)
- ACIP Updates Typhoid Vaccine Recommendations (FREE)
- Better Physical Fitness in Middle Age Associated with Reduced Risks for Cancer, Cancer Mortality Among Men (FREE)
- ACIP Publishes Recommendations for Nine-Valent HPV Vaccine (FREE)