HEALTH

Democratic lawmakers again propose Prescription Drug Affordability Board

BY: - January 10, 2023

With many medication prices rising faster than inflation, Democrats in both the House and Senate are proposing that Virginia create a Prescription Drug Affordability Board with the power to review and set upper payment limits on certain drug prices. “Prescription drug costs have been spiraling out of control for years,” said Sen. Chap Petersen, D-Fairfax […]

From start to finish, 2023 will be a big year for abortion policy in Virginia

BY: - January 9, 2023

When former Virginia Sen. Jen Kiggans was running for Congress last year, she sidestepped questions about her stance on abortion by saying it’s up to states to decide, not the federal government. That answer isn’t really an option for Republican Kevin Adams, who’s running in a special election this week to replace Kiggans, a Republican, […]

ER doctors call private equity staffing practices illegal, seek to ban them

BY: - December 22, 2022

By Bernard Wolfson | Kaiser Health News A group of emergency physicians and consumer advocates in multiple states are pushing for stiffer enforcement of decades-old statutes that prohibit the ownership of medical practices by corporations not owned by licensed doctors. Thirty-three states plus the District of Columbia have rules on their books against the so-called […]

White House resumes handing out free COVID-19 rapid test kits

BY: - December 16, 2022

WASHINGTON — The Biden administration is once again offering Americans the opportunity to order free at-home COVID-19 rapid tests from the federal government, a program that it had shuttered amid an ongoing stalemate with Congress over additional funding to address the virus.  The program will allow each household to order four free COVID-19 tests as […]

Youngkin proposes $230 million behavioral health overhaul

BY: - December 14, 2022

HENRICO — Describing Virginia’s current behavioral health system as in “crisis,” Gov. Glenn Youngkin on Wednesday laid out a sweeping $230 million plan to address gaps in how the state cares for adults and children facing mental health, substance abuse and other behavioral issues. “The commonwealth’s behavioral health safety net is not equipped to address […]

Hospital financial decisions play a role in critical shortage of pediatric beds for RSV patients

BY: - December 13, 2022

By Liz Szabo, Kaiser Health News The dire shortage of pediatric hospital beds plaguing the nation this fall is a byproduct of financial decisions made by hospitals over the past decade, as they shuttered children’s wards, which often operate in the red, and expanded the number of beds available for more profitable endeavors like joint […]

Youngkin announces task force on troubled temporary detention order system

BY: - December 12, 2022

With state hospitals continuing to be strained by mental health patients in crisis, Gov. Glenn Youngkin announced Monday the creation of a task force to combat deficiencies in how Virginia handles individuals whom magistrates order to be held involuntarily for treatment.  Virginia’s current system “is bad for patients, care providers, families, and law enforcement who […]

Here’s when drug prices will start to decrease for Medicare recipients

BY: - December 12, 2022

Starting next month, a $35 cap on insulin prices will go into effect for millions of Medicare recipients. The lower pricing is one of the first of several policy measures Americans will see in the coming months and years under the Inflation Reduction Act signed into law in August. The bill also requires pharmaceutical companies […]

Virginia reports first monkeypox death

BY: - December 1, 2022

Virginia reported its first death from monkeypox Thursday, one of only 15 that have occurred nationwide since the most recent outbreak began in May. The Virginia Department of Health said the deceased was an adult resident of the Eastern Health Region, an area encompassing Hampton Roads, the Eastern Shore and the upper peninsulas. No other […]

Virginia reports first pediatric flu death of season as cases remain high

BY: - November 30, 2022

Virginia recorded its first influenza-related pediatric death of the 2022-23 flu season Wednesday. According to a release from the Virginia Department of Health, a child between the ages of 5 and 12 in the state’s southwestern region died “from complications associated with influenza.”  “Flu can be a very dangerous illness,” said State Health Commissioner Colin […]

Proposal to reduce cosmetology licensure hours sparks backlash

BY: - November 29, 2022

The General Laws Subcommittee room was filled to the brim and unusually colorful on an afternoon in March 2022.  Approximately 50 cosmetology students, some sporting bright neon hair, had traveled from across the state to oppose a bill from Sen. Dave Marsden, D-Fairfax, that aimed to reduce the number of training hours required for a […]

As mental health problems in schools soar, provider pulls out of southwestern districts

BY: - November 21, 2022

Several southwestern school districts in Virginia have less than a month before losing a key mental health services provider, which is citing changes in how the state handles the provision of such services as a reason for pulling out. Family Preservation Services announced in a Oct. 27 letter that it would cease providing therapeutic day […]