HEALTH

In each of the past two legislative sessions, the General Assembly has hit the pause button on Dominion Energy's plans to close ponds containing millions of tons of coal ash at four sites across the state.Some state lawmakers and environmental groups have pushed the reluctant utility to dig up...
As Virginia barrels toward massive changes to its Medicaid program — from expansion to the proposed work requirements — one new benefit hasn't gotten quite as much attention as others but could make a big difference for groups that provide housing services.Tucked into the 1115 demonstration waiver the state...
The Department for Medical Assistance Services had been aiming to submit its Medicaid work requirement waiver to the federal government by Nov. 4, as they were directed to do in the state budget.But the deadline came and went, and no request reached the federal Centers for Medicare & Medicaid...
A group of lawmakers shot down proposals to allow medical-aid-in-dying, also known as physician-assisted suicide, in Virginia on Wednesday in a review of a series of legislative recommendations on health care.Del. Kaye Kory, D-Fairfax, requested that the Joint Commission on Health Care study the medical-aid-in-dying debate, in which a...
Chesterfield County Sheriff Karl Leonard sees firsthand the devastation that the ongoing opioid epidemic wreaks in his county, as more and more people enter his jail with an addiction and a hepatitis C infection.He's been openly supportive of starting a needle-exchange program, otherwise known as comprehensive harm reduction, for...
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has awarded Virginia two grants totaling $4.9 million to increase its prevention and response efforts related to the opioid epidemic.The state's Department of Health received a little over $4 million to increase its emergency response, including recovery, mitigation and surveillance and data...
Punctuating years of political combat, today marks the beginning of Medicaid enrollment under the new expansion rules, vastly broadening eligibility in a program that was previously one of the least generous in the country.The new rules, passed by the General Assembly in a special session earlier this year, allows...
For the past few weeks, Edward Peters has been trying to spread the word about the new needle exchange that Health Brigade in Richmond just launched.An outreach specialist with the Richmond-based free clinic, Peters said that most people he talks to on the street seem open to the idea...
As tax revenue from tobacco products falls, Virginia lawmakers are turning their attention to vaping products.Vaping involves flavored liquids that are vaporized within a device, inhaled and then exhaled.The devices consist of a mouthpiece, a battery, a cartridge for containing the e-liquid or e-juice, and a heating component for...
The logic is pretty simple: If you pay someone based on the number of services they provide, they're probably going to provide more services.It's the inherent problem with the fee-for-service payment model in health care. Doctors' incentive is quantity — like the number of scans or blood tests they...