The Lund Report

Naturopaths Given Reprieve by Oregon Health Authority

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But patients who want to start seeing naturopathic doctors through the Oregon Health Plan are still out of luck

November 16, 2012 -- Naturopathic doctors are “cautiously optimistic” that they will have a place within Oregon’s coordinated care organizations (CCOs) after officials threatened to cut them out of the primary-care system and seemingly ignore non-discrimination language in Senate Bill 1509.

Malpractice Legislation Nearly Ready to See Daylight

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The legislative draft calls for physicians to discuss serious medical errors with their patients and, depending on the severity of the problem, offer them a financial settlement outside the courtroom

November 15, 2012 -- After months of negotiations between trial lawyers and physicians, legislators are optimistic about reaching a consensus on medical malpractice reform when they gather in Salem next month. All along the goal has been to find a way of reducing lawsuits while creating a safer patient environment.

Farm to School Program Awards Grants to Local Schools

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Schools can still apply for funding from a state-grant program until December 14

November 15, 2012 -- School children in Eugene and Portland will be eating more local agricultural products next year, and learning more about where their food comes from thanks to federal grant funding from the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Farm to School Program – and schools around the state are still invited to apply for funding through a state-run grant program whose application deadline is Dec. 14.

Suicide Strikes Physicians at Alarming Rate

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Dr. Pamela Wible, who admits she was suicidal herself, has written a book to help other physicians enjoy practicing medicine once again

November 15, 2012 -- Doctors have a far higher suicide completion rate than the general public. In fact, the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention estimates that on average the United States loses as many as 400 physicians to suicide each year, that’s at least one a day and the equivalent of two to three entire medical school classes.

Many Homeowners Unaware of Lead Contamination

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommend routine blood lead testing for all children between the ages of one and six

November 15, 2012 -- Greig Warner, lead risk assessor for the Multnomah County Lead Poisoning Prevention Program, sometimes goes a month without being called out to inspect a home suspected to be lead contaminated – and sometimes he visits as many as two families per day. “I've just been buried lately,” he said.

Kaiser Becomes First Health Insurer to Cover Autism Treatment

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Paul Terdal, the father of two autistic boys, has worked behind the scenes to convince health insurers to cover Applied Behavioral Analysis therapy

November 13, 2012 -- Advocates scored a major victory when Kaiser Permanente announced it would provide coverage of Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA) therapy for autism and neurodevelopmental disorders.

“What we see is Kaiser actively issuing approvals under a new policy,” said Paul Terdal, the father of two autistic boys. “I can’t overstress my appreciation for Kaiser.”

A New Way of Shopping for Health Insurance Gets a Trial Run

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Oregon’s health insurance exchange, which gets under way in October 2013 needs to make certain consumers have easy access to information about the total cost of a health plan, the author maintains

OPINION – November 8, 2012 -- Earlier this week, I took part in a trial run of the user interface system for the website of the Oregon health insurance exchange—now called Cover Oregon.

People on Medicaid Struggle with Mental Health, Substance Abuse Problems

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Health Share of Oregon board members rely on their prior experiences to help bridge the gap between physical and mental health

November 8, 2012 – There’s a very high preponderance of people on the Oregon Health Plan who have a mental health or substance abuse problem, according to Mary Monnat, president and CEO of LifeWorks NW. In the Portland metropolitan area, such problems affect 70 percent of that population.

Activists Push to Halt Coal Exports, Coal Burning

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Local health, environmental and clean energy groups participate in a screening to hear about the struggles of activists in the Coal River Valley of West Virginia

November 8, 2012 -- The fight to keep coal trains from passing through Oregon on their way to ports overseas was put in a national context at a free screening of the documentary, The Last Mountain, at Portland's Bagdad Theater last week.

Healthcare Leaders Stress Need for Diversity Among CCOs

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Since racial and ethnic minorities represent a disproportionate share of the uninsured, there was a call for CCOs to become more inclusive

November 8, 2012 -- As the state’s coordinated care organizations ramp up, healthcare experts agree that a major advance CCOs can bring to the table is the ability to custom-design healthcare priorities based on the needs of a specific community.

But that won’t necessarily be easy, experts speaking at a conference last week agreed.

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