Public Health

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What Older Americans Need to Know About Taking Paxlovid

Paxlovid is an antiviral treatment for people with mild to moderate COVID-19 symptoms at high risk of becoming seriously ill, including adults 65 and up. It is important for older adults to consider a treatment plan before becoming infected, as Paxlovid could have complications with other drugs and should be evaluated by a medical provider. This article provides more information about Paxlovid and suggests ways older adults can prepare a treatment plan in advance of catching the new COVID-19 variant.

Short URL: http://www.advancingstates.org/node/74325

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FDA Grants Accelerated Approval for Alzheimer’s Disease Treatment

The FDA recently granted accelerated approval for the drug Leqembi, a medication intended to slow the progression of Alzheimer’s disease. Leqembi, the brand name for lecanemab, is the second Alzheimer’s therapy for individuals with mild cognitive impairment. Lequembi targets the protein amyloid and can be prescribed to patients in early to mid-stages of Alzheimer’s disease. Eisai, the manufacturer of Leqembi, reports that the drug will be available by January 23, 2023 and estimates the cost of the biweekly infusion to be $26,500 annually. Medicare coverage of Leqembi and other drugs like it, such as Aduhelm, that have accelerated FDA approval are limited to beneficiaries enrolled in certain clinical trials.

Short URL: http://www.advancingstates.org/node/74311

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Engaging Communities of Color to Promote Health Equity: Five Lessons from New York-Based Health Care Organizations

The Center for Health Care Strategies, with support from the New York Health Foundation and in partnership with ATW Health Solutions, assisted seven New York-based health care organizations in piloting strategies for engaging patients of color to advance health equity. This CHCS brief outlines considerations for health care organizations in developing patient engagement strategies, including: (1) building trust with patient partners over time; (2) tailoring outreach strategies; (3) using-trauma-informed approaches; (4) engaging patients in data use; and (5) approaching engagement with humility.

Short URL: http://www.advancingstates.org/node/74289

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Study finds addressing food insecurity reduced healthcare utilization by 30%

In 2017, Reading Hospital was awarded a $4.5 million grant from CMS to implement the Accountable Health Communities (AHC) model and assess whether addressing the health-related social needs of local Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries would impact their healthcare costs and inpatient and outpatient healthcare utilization. This case study looks at 747 patients with resolved food needs and finds that among this cohort, emergency department visits dropped 32%, hospital admissions decreased 32%, readmissions were reduced by 30%, and hospital costs went down 31%. Among the patients who were also on the Diabetes Registry, A1C rates decreased by an average of 2.2%

Short URL: http://www.advancingstates.org/node/74281

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Public Health Emergency Extended

On Friday, November 11, 2022 HHS announced that it will again extend the COVID-19 Public Health Emergency (PHE). Based on commitments to provide at least 60 days’ notice prior to allowing the PHE to lapse, HHS had until Saturday, November 12, to provide states with notice that the PHE would either be extended or end in January. This means that unwinding protocol will not yet begin, and that the PHE policies such as Medicaid FMAP increases; continuous eligibility; and the 1135, Appendix K, and Emergency SPAs will remain in effect.

Short URL: http://www.advancingstates.org/node/74233

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State Medicaid Budget Survey: Medicaid Enrollment & Spending Growth FY 2022 and 2023

KFF’s new state Medicaid budget survey anticipates Medicaid enrollment will begin to decline in FY 2023, following the end of the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE). The 22nd annual survey finds that states expect growth in Medicaid enrollment to slow to 8.4 percent in FY 2022 (down from 11.2 percent the previous year) before declining by 0.4 percent in FY 2023.

Short URL: http://www.advancingstates.org/node/74191

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ACL Releases Older Americans Act Program Highlights

ACL released its first comprehensive report on the accomplishments of Older Americans Act (OAA) Title III, VI, and VII programs. Enacted in 1965, the OAA created the foundation for a comprehensive system of services and supports that enables millions of older adults in this country to continue to live independently as they age. Today, programs funded by the OAA provide essential services to older adults, targeting those with the greatest economic or social need, particularly low-income and minority persons, older individuals with limited English proficiency, and older persons living in rural areas. The programs play a vital role in helping to maintain the health and well-being of millions of older adults and their caregivers.

Short URL: http://www.advancingstates.org/node/74163

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Reducing COVID-19 Vaccine Hesitancy Among Direct Support Professionals

ANCOR has announced a new campaign, As a DSP It's Up to Me!, designed to increase vaccine acceptance among direct support professionals (DSPs) so they can protect people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. A new COVID-19 Vaccine Toolkit has been designed to reduce vaccine hesitancy among DSPs and offer a range of resources to help community providers engage in conversations with DSPs that encourage them to get vaccinated.

Short URL: http://www.advancingstates.org/node/74090

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The Biden Administration Announces a New Model to Improve Cancer Care for Medicare Patients

On Monday, June 27, 2022 the Biden Administration announced a new model aimed at improving cancer care for Medicare patients and lowering health care costs. CMS’ Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation designed the Enhancing Oncology Model (EOM) to test how to improve health care providers’ ability to deliver patient-centered care and consider patients’ unique needs. The model will focus on supporting patients, caregivers, and survivors, while addressing inequities and providing patients with treatments that address their individual needs.

Short URL: http://www.advancingstates.org/node/73997

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