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written by Josefa Velasquez
SECOND SHOT AT BROOKLYN — The Cuomo administration announced Wednesday it was awarding $500,000 to Northwell Health to study the long-festering problem of Brooklyn’s cash-strapped hospitals, taking another stab at one of the most challenging health care problems confronting the governor. Health care in central Brooklyn has dogged Andrew Cuomo throughout his six years in office, and there are no quick fixes. These hospitals are a critical element of the safety net, serving some of the poorest residents in the state. That makes them vital and, consequently, inviable.
Cuomo tried to address the issue during his first year in office, commissioning a report that outlined the very same challenges the state health department mentioned on Wednesday. It is unlikely Northwell's study will break any new ground. Right-sizing, however prudent, is politically perilous both because communities often equate hospitals with health care and because hospitals are often a source of jobs. Rallies to save Long Island College Hospital and Interfaith Medical Center became magnets for “Shame on Cuomo” chants in 2013 and 2014. But Cuomo feels he must act as propping up these hospitals is costing the state $300 million each year. And there are reasons his administration feels optimistic about the chances of success. Ready more here: http://politi.co/1TlYh2U
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NEW YORK-PRESBYTERIAN PAYOUT — New York-Presbyterian Hospital will pay $2.2 million to settle accusations that it violated patient privacy when it let a television crew film two patients for ABC's "NY Med," according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, which called the behavior "egregious." http://politi.co/1WIluQ2
NOW WE KNOW — Men who pay for sex pay for more sex as they age, according to a study in Archives of Sexual Behavior. http://bit.ly/1rpXVQq
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REPORTING CHAOS — The current state of health care reporting and quality measurements in New York is 'chaotic,' according to a report issued Thursday by the Healthcare Association of New York State, a trade group that represents hospitals statewide. http://politi.co/1WIlTC1
DON’T DO THAT — Jeffrey Gould, a physician, is accused of hiding two surveillance cameras in a bathroom of Crouse Hospital's intensive care unit, according to the Associated Press. “Defense attorney Edward Menkin tells The Post-Standard of Syracuse that Gould hid the cameras to try to catch the person who he says stole his prescription medication and a camera.” http://bit.ly/1rpXOUO
FENTANYL SURGE — Fatal drug overdoses were up 10 percent in 2015, according to the New York City health department, as fentanyl, a synthetic opioid presents a growing threat. http://on.nyc.gov/1pn6Xvm
SETTLED — Upstate Medical University has agreed to pay $150,000 to a former student who says he was wrongly expelled from the school’s radiology program for not disclosing his arrest records. James Falco, who was expelled in 2010, was previously convicted of harassment charges and DWIs. According to the Syracuse Post-Standard, the former student argued that his civil rights were violated because the university didn’t give him due process before expelling him. http://bit.ly/1WIng3p
--Walgreens has agreed to pay $500,000 to settle charges it used misleading advertising in its stores, Attorney General Eric Shneiderman’s office announced. http://bit.ly/1TlZ4RA
ANATOMY OF A LAYOFF — Crain’s dives into the 250 layoffs at EmblemHealth that were announced earlier this week. News of the layoffs hit employees via a video from CEO Karen Ignagni: http://bit.ly/1qFwssY
MUNICIPAL IDS FOR MEDICAL RECORDS — People with New York City municipal identification cards may soon be able to use them to access health care services and their own medical records at public hospitals, Mayor Bill de Blasio announced Thursday. http://bit.ly/1qFwJMu
OPEN IN THE BRONX — Mayor Bill de Blasio visited the South Bronx on Thursday to open the Damian Family Health Care Center, which aims to serve about 10,000 people in the borough. DNAinfo.com has more: http://dnain.fo/1pn8jGw
MAKING ROUNDS — Naomi Post will be the new executive director of the Children’s Defense Fund-New York. She had been at the United Way of New York City where she served as a Senior Fellow.
COMING ATTRACTIONS — Lenox Hill Hospital will unveil its environmentally-friendly, City Council-funded ambulance during a ribbon-cutting ceremony on Earth Day. What makes it environmentally friendly? It doesn’t have to idle.
ACROSS THE RIVER: POLITICO New Jersey’s Katie Jennings reports that while much of the discussion of health disparities focuses on New Jersey’s urban centers, Health commissioner Cathleen Bennett said Thursday that problems persist in the state’s rural communities, too. http://politi.co/1WImtja
PHARMA REPORT: The Associated Press reports: “Swiss pharmaceuticals maker Novartis says net income from continued operations fell 13 percent in the first quarter as generic competition cut into sales of Gleevec, one of the first very effective cancer medicines.” http://wapo.st/1pn8LVa
WHAT WE’RE READING:
-FOLLOW THE MONEY — The American Medical Association and PhRMA each spent roughly $6 million to lobby Congress in the first three months of 2016, according to new lobbying filings - making them among the health care industry's biggest spenders, according to POLITICO.
-BERNIE SANDERS AND SODA —The mayor of Philadelphia and his health commissioner Tom Farley are pushing a tax on sugary drinks. http://bit.ly/1rpXTbh
-A MARRIAGE GONE BAD — The New York Times examines the messy relationship between Theranos and Walgreens. http://nyti.ms/1rpXNQL
-WHEN HEALTH CARE AND RELIGION INTERSECT — A new law in Mississippi makes it legal for physicians and therapists to opt out of providing health care on a patient on religious grounds. http://theatln.tc/1WIpXSx
-UNITEDHEALTH HEADS TO NORTH CAROLINA — The Triangle Business Journal reports that Optum, the technology and health care services arm of health insurance provider UnitedHealth Group, is heading to North Carolina. http://bit.ly/1WIqPGW
-NO TO NALOXONE— Maine Gov. Paul LePage vetoed a bill Wednesday that would allow pharmacists to dispense naloxone, the opioid overdose reversal drug, without a prescription. LePage, according to the Portland Press Herald, argued that having naloxone handy “serves only to perpetuate the cycle of addiction.” http://bit.ly/1TlZqHV
TODAY'S TIP — Comes from the Cleveland Clinic. Strawberries are among the most contaminated produce. Here’s how to wash them: http://cle.clinic/1SnmR13
-GOOD NEWS — Death rates among young children and young adults in some of the poorest counties in the country have declined, according to a study by Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. http://bit.ly/1qFy4mi
-LINK —There’s a link between throat cancer and oral sex. http://cle.clinic/1Snnmbn
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