Today's News and Commentary

About the public’s health

Dietary proteins and protein sources and risk of death: the Kuopio Ischaemic Heart Disease Risk Factor Study: The Finns have been researching the long term epidemiological effects of diet for many years. This latest study found: “Higher ratio of animal to plant protein in diet and higher meat intake were associated with increased mortality risk. Higher total protein intake appeared to be associated with mortality mainly among those with a predisposing disease. “

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Association Between Secondary Prevention Medication Use and Outcomes in Frail Older Adults After Acute Myocardial Infarction: This research highlights the need to individualize patient care taking into account quality of life issues. The researchers concluded: “Use of more guideline-recommended medications after myocardial infarction was associated with decreased mortality in older, predominantly frail adults, but no difference in rehospitalization. Results for functional decline from the main and stability analyses were discordant and did not rule out an increased risk associated with more medication use.”

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Safety and Effectiveness of Consumer Antiseptic Rubs; Topical Antimicrobial Drug Products for Over-the-Counter Human Use: Most people believe that antiseptic hand rubs are safe and possibly the most sanitary way to clean hands. About that first assumption: In 2016 the FDA declared “28 ineligible active ingredients” in those products. Today, the FDA issued a statement that the three remaining active ingredients that are eligible for review —benzalkonium chloride, ethyl alcohol, and isopropyl alcohol— need to be studied further and cannot be classified as Generally Regarded As Safe (GRAS). As for the best cleaning method? It is still soap and water.

Read the Federal Register statement

About health insurance

Industry Voices—Are healthcare consumers satisfied with health insurers? Millennial data show warning signs: This article is a nice review of millennials’ preferences as they apply to health insurance products and services. It has a number of references to industry research studies.

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MACPAC calls for Congress to eliminate the drug rebate cap: CMS has been discussing elimination of drug rebates for Medicare Part D. Now the Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission (MACPAC) is recommending Congress end the cap on drug rebates paid to state Medicaid programs.

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