Health

The GOP's latest proposal to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act hews closely to the earlier bill that didn't win enough support among lawmakers to bring to a vote.

Perhaps the biggest change in the document released Thursday is that it leaves in place the Affordable Care Act taxes on wealthy individuals. It uses that money to reduce the number of people left without insurance coverage by the law's changes. This latest version adds $70 billion to a fund for states — bringing the total to $132 billion — to help support coverage of low-income people.

Work requirements under the federal health insurance program Medicaid are based on a simple premise: If you want to receive government assistance for your healthcare and you’re able to work, you should work.

Crotched Mountain Foundation

Crotched Mountain Foundation's board voted Monday to close its longtime specialty hospital in Greenfield, likely by the end of August.

Political Speechwriting, Wishbones, & Every Body Yoga

May 19, 2017
Gage Skidmore via Flickr CC / https://flic.kr/p/RUiA2j

On today's show:

Chris Berry via Flickr CC / https://flic.kr/p/7KpvPX

On today's show: 

Thomas Fearon

Every day, an email goes out to leaders in New Hampshire’s mental health system. It gives an updated count on the number of people in immediate need of inpatient psychiatric care, but are being denied that care because of a shortage of beds in New Hampshire hospitals.

On February 20th of this year, that email contained a staggering number: 68 adults and children were being housed in hospital emergency rooms and hallways because of a lack of available beds. It was a new high.

After weeks of will-they-or-won't-they tensions, the House managed to pass its GOP replacement for the Affordable Care Act on Thursday by a razor-thin margin. The vote was 217-213.

Democrats who lost the battle are still convinced they may win the political war. As the Republicans reached a majority for the bill, Democrats on the House floor began chanting, "Na, na, na, na ... hey, hey, hey ... goodbye." They say Republicans could lose their seats for supporting a bill that could cause so much disruption in voters' health care.

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On today's show:

Allison Quantz for NHPR

Following the introduction of new prescribing guidelines, surgeons at Dartmouth-Hitchcock are reducing the number of opioids they give patients after undergoing certain minor procedures.

Doctors say the initiative is an important step in reducing the number of painkillers available as the state reels from an ongoing opioid epidemic.

Walt Jabsco via flickr Creative Commons / https://flic.kr/p/23vvEm

NPR's Barbara Bradley Hagerty on Reimagining Midlife

Dec 30, 2016
Michael Garcia Novak / Flickr/CC

Even with all the angst about mid-life crises, and birthday cards calling you over the hill, the author says the middle years are most often about renewal. Today we're talking with former NPR correspondent Barbara Bradley Hagerty on what she discovered about middle age in America.


Todd Bookman for NHPR

The term “apprentice” may conjure up thoughts of reality television and a certain President-elect, but actual apprenticeships--where workers learn skills on the job--are on the rise nationally. And in New Hampshire's health care industry, apprentices are being used as a way to fill a gap in the workforce.

Diloz via Flickr CC / https://flic.kr/p/9LzeHd

 A report on the state's Division of Children, Youth and Families points to an immediate need to add more staff.

Sean Winters via flickr Creative Commons / https://flic.kr/p/HN51N

When a seasoned magazine editor took her daughter to the bookstore, they found scientists and explorers in magazines for boys. For girls: princesses, cover girls in make-up and tips for shinier hair.

On today’s show a new magazine for girls has plenty of creative, inspiring ideas, and no lipstick! 

Also today, aspiring doctors get all they can from med school, for the rest, they turn to actors. We'll find out how playing sick is helping to make better doctors. And the 5-second rule gets the science treatment.

  A company that offers health insurance plans in New Hampshire under the Affordable Care Act is suing the federal government over a part of the health care law. 

Billy Brown / Flickr

Researchers at the University of New Hampshire have found more than half of families eligible for a federal nutrition program are not enrolled. 

Shawn Carpenter via Flickr CC / https://flic.kr/p/89a25N

Concepts of gender are shifting in workplaces, schools and public bathrooms across America. But how about on the track, or court or pool where athletes compete as male or female?  Today, how new Olympics guidelines define gender, and a fair fight.

And later in the show, an upset among the dignified crosswords puzzles set! We'll find out why the New York Times puzzle makers are being called tone-deaf. 

2016 Kids Count Data Book, Annie E. Casey Foundation

New Hampshire remains near the top of the list in an annual ranking of kids’ well-being, but the same report shows that issues with child poverty — while less prevalent here than in other states — have grown.

In the newest edition of Kids Count, a report produced by the Annie E. Casey Foundation, New Hampshire comes in at No. 4 in the nation for overall child well-being. Much of the rankings used in the report use data from 2014.

American Dueling Grounds, Chuck Klosterman, & SpaceX

Jun 10, 2016
Nat Welch / https://flic.kr/p/dZ3KLR

Dueling was once a common part of the American experience. Today, we’ll learn more about this history and some popular dueling spots that that public can still visit today.

And what if we're wrong about everything? Pop culture critic Chuck Klosterman takes on the difficult task of predicting how our present will be viewed hundreds of years from now. We'll talk about the next great American novelist, Neil DeGrasse Tyson, and the improbable factor that kept Hamilton on the ten dollar bill.

Casey McDermott / NHPR

All this week, NHPR is looking at how New Hampshire schools are rethinking the role they play in the lives of their students and their communities.  More students are arriving preoccupied with hunger, homelessness, and other family crises.  Teachers are on the front lines, trying to fill basic needs before the learning begins. Schools are cobbling together their own system of social services in the face of the state’s heroin crisis, the aftermath of the recession, and struggling local economies.  


Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center, Lebanon

Dartmouth-Hitchcock health care system has been discussing a potential affiliation deal with Elliot Health System, a smaller provider serving southern New Hampshire.

The Valley News reports D-H executive vice president Stephen LeBlanc confirmed that the discussions were underway, but he declined to say what form the affiliation might take. 

Monadnock Region To Lose Inpatient Psychiatric Unit

May 6, 2016
www.ratehospitals.com

An inpatient psychiatric unit in the Monadnock region will close because of staffing issues.

The move at Cheshire Medical Center/Dartmouth-Hitchcock Keene takes effect July 1. 

Hospital officials say a nationwide shortage of psychiatrists has limited their ability to treat patients - while the unit is licensed to treat 12 adult and six adolescent patients, staffing issues have meant they've only had an average of three to four adults a day. 

Wikimedia Commons

 Less than a week after New Hampshire’s first medical marijuana dispensary opened in Plymouth, another is poised to open on Thursday in Dover.

The Department of Health and Human Services has officially certified Temescal Wellness, which was selected to operate two of the state's New Hampshire’s four medical marijuana dispensaries, to start serving patients at its Dover location. The company says it plans to open its doors at noon on Thursday.

CREDIT GETTY IMAGES

  One of Boston's top hospitals is seeing an increasing number of drug abusers shoot up on its property, a tactic experts say opioid addicts hope will save them from lethal overdoses. 

Concussions: What We Know Now and How to Respond

Apr 6, 2016
David Hassler / Flickr/CC

With the NFL recently admitting that repeated blows to the head can cause degenerative brain disease, we take a time-out to scan the research on brain trauma, including innovations in reducing incidents and assessing concussions.  But is what we're learning discouraging participation in contact sports? And is rising concern over brain injury backed by science?

Sara Plourde for NHPR

The question of whether to continue New Hampshire's expanded Medicaid program has been one of the top State House policy debates this year.

But it's something local governments are mulling over as well. In City Halls across the state, officials say the program has led to some significant savings: in the slice of taxpayers’ money set aside for medical and prescription aid, and indirect savings in other areas.

NHHealthCost.org

A state website that helps people compare prices across healthcare facilities relaunched this week with an expanded library of medical procedures and new information on hospital-quality measures.

The new version of NHHealthCost.Org features 31 additional medical procedures, including physical therapy, behavioral health and chiropractic care. Cost estimates for 16 dental procedures are now available, as well as new information on the retail price of 65 brand-name and generic drugs.

State Confirms Mumps Cases In Saint Anselm Students

Feb 28, 2016
CDC/ Dr. F. A. Murphy

  New Hampshire health officials have confirmed several cases of mumps at Saint Anselm College. 

Dank Depot via Flickr CC / https://flic.kr/p/9c93J6

New Hampshire residents hoping to get access to medical marijuana are still waiting for the state’s dispensaries to open

Right now, those new facilities still have to go through a few more rounds of inspections before they can open their doors and start serving patients. Once they do open, patients will only be able to visit one dispensary at a time. And for residents in the northernmost region of the state, the nearest dispensary could be at least two hours away.

Steve Smith via Flickr CC

An initial review of whether New Hampshire insurance companies are appropriately covering substance abuse treatment shows significant differences in how often claims are denied, but experts identified problems with only a handful of cases.

The probe comes as New Hampshire seeks to expand treatment and recovery services amid a growing heroin and opioid crisis. The state insurance department began looking into the issue in November after hearing from complaints from providers and advocates, and officials presented their preliminary findings in Concord on Friday.

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