Category: Politics and Regulation

Money and pills

When Drugs Cost Too Much

Our ability to develop new drugs is fast outstripping our ability to pay for them; some are exorbitantly expensive and not very effective. Funds are limited, and as a society we need to have a serious discussion about how they are to be allocated.

/ June 6, 2017
Capsules and money

A closer look at generic drugs

In the struggle to contain growing healthcare costs, generic drugs have the potential to save millions. What gives us confidence they are equivalent to brand-name drugs?

/ June 1, 2017
Marijuana bud

Medical marijuana as the new herbalism, part 5: Turning herbalism into science-based medicine

There’s a new clinical trial published in the New England Journal of Medicine showing a beneficial effect due to cannabidiol, a chemical isolated from marijuana, on drug-resistant seizures due to Dravet syndrome. Although there are a fair number of caveats, this is how you begin to turn the herbalism that characterizes medical marijuana advocacy into science-based medicine.

/ May 29, 2017
AHCA

Healthcare reform should ditch mandated coverage of CAM providers

Forced insurance coverage of chiropractic, naturopathic, and acupuncture services is not consistent with the goals of either the ACA or the AHCA. Whatever happens to Obamacare in the U.S. Senate, Section 2706 of the ACA should be repealed.

/ May 25, 2017
Acupuncture & chiropractic

Is the FDA embracing quackery? A draft proposal recommends that doctors learn about acupuncture and chiropractic for pain management.

Chiropractors and acupuncturists have lobbied for a greater role in treating pain. They might well have won it. Last week, the FDA released proposed changes Wednesday to its blueprint on educating health care providers about treating pain, which now recommend that doctors learn about chiropractic care and acupuncture as therapies that might help patients avoid opioids. There's still time to stop this.

/ May 15, 2017
Advocate for vaccines

Make measles great again: A case study of the politicization of school vaccine requirements in Michigan

Protecting our children through school vaccine requirements has long had strong bipartisan support. Unfortunately, the antivaccine movement has had success linking "vaccine choice" with "freedom" and "parental rights", leading to a surge of right wing antivaccine activism that has undermined that bipartisan consensus. Two bills under consideration by the Michigan legislature represent a microcosm of what is going on in much of...

/ May 1, 2017
Fibrocystic breasts

FDA issues warning letter to “holistic” practitioner offering thermography for breast cancer detection

Thermography for breast cancer detection is one of more than 65 products the FDA just announced it is going after for fraudulently claiming to prevent, diagnose, treat or cure cancer.

/ April 27, 2017
Vice President Mike Pence is a supporter of right-to-try, having signed Indiana's right-to-try bill into law when he was the Governor of Indiana.

The cruel sham that is right-to-try raises its ugly head at the federal level again

Ill-advised right-to-try bills are spreading like kudzu through state legislatures. Now federal legislators want to insert right-to-try language into the bill that funds FDA drug approval. Given the support of powerful Republicans like Vice President Mike Pence for right-to-try, is it too late to stop this juggernaut and protect patients?

/ April 17, 2017
MMR Coverage California

California SB 277: New evidence that restricting nonmedical exemptions to school vaccine requirements works

The 2016-2017 kindergarten numbers are in. SB 277, the new California law banning personal belief exemptions to school vaccine requirements, works as intended. Early numbers show that vaccine uptake has increased, and personal belief exemptions are down dramatically.

/ April 16, 2017
Map_of_USA_showing_state_names

Legislative Alchemy 2017: Naturopaths push licensing and practice expansion while in damage control over IV turmeric death

Naturopaths are in damage control mode over the death of a naturopathic patient due to turmeric infusion, even as they lobby state legislatures for licensing and practice expansion.

/ April 13, 2017