March 19, 2012 -- The Northwest Center for Alternatives to Pesticides will host a nationally influential environmental health activist when author Sandra Steingraber gives a free talk from 7 to 9 p.m. on Thursday, April 5 at the Old Church, 1422 S.W. 11th Ave. in Portland.
March 2, 2012 -- It’s been a busy month in Oregon’s world of health policy, but perhaps nowhere more so than the intersection between tribal health issues and the health insurance exchange.
Even though the financial future of the Oregon Health Insurance Exchange suffered a setback by going back to committee during this short legislative session, both tribal and exchange leaders expect nothing will change in terms of the guaranteed insurance funding and basic administrative structure.
February 28, 2012 -- Three Oregon physicians are among a group of 50 doctors who filed an amicus brief with the Supreme Court arguing that the individual mandate in the Affordable Care Act should be struck down.
The doctors’ friend-of-court brief creates strange bedfellows by essentially arguing that the individual mandate to purchase insurance coverage violates interstate commerce law.
February 10, 2012 -- Volunteers in Medicine has started a new Clackamas County nonprofit that will launch, in Oregon City, the organization’s first free clinic for the region’s low-income uninsured adults.
“The need to provide primary and preventive care to uninsured Clackamas County residents is urgent,” said Jan Hochstatter, founding board member and chairwoman. “Up to this point, there has been no free health clinic to serve uninsured residents of Clackamas County.”
February 6, 2012 -- Technology is changing so quickly that state officials and advocates overseeing more streamlined transfers of health information in Oregon are scrambling to keep up.
2010 may not seem like that long ago, but from the perspective of a computer, it’s already the Stone Age. That was the year that the Community Leadership Council of the Archimedes Movement made recommendations on the state’s Strategic Plan for Health Information Exchange, which the federal government approved a few months later.
January 30, 2012 -- New HIV screening rules coming before the February session represent a complete turnaround in the strategy of advocates for people suffering from the 30-year-old virus causing immune system deficiency.
To protect HIV patients from discrimination, state lawmakers in the 1990s passed a series of laws that now require special forms for consenting to an HIV test and extra layers of bureaucracy for transferring HIV-related patient data. Under proposed legislation, patients would no longer have to give specific informed consent for an HIV test.
January 23, 2012 -- Kathy Moon, a nurse practitioner at Dunes Family Health Care, is one of the lucky ones whose practice hasn’t closed down or had to slash services because nurses now make less for performing the same functions as physicians.
Not that her patients wouldn’t notice the strain on her practice, she points out. But while it doesn’t affect her personally, being on a salary, it does affect the clinic’s ability to hire help in the office.