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Catholic Health Plans: No to Birth Control, Yes to Viagra

Catholic Health Plans: No to Birth Control, Yes to Viagra

reporting on health, contraception
Contraception: NPR's Julie Rovner reports that Catholic employers' health plans don't cover contraception for women or vasectomies for men – but they do cover Viagra. Happy Valentine's Day!

Addiction: The number of Sacramento-area babies born with withdrawal syndrome has doubled in the past decade – a phenomenon that coincides with rising rates of prescription painkiller use, Phillip Reese and Grace Rubenstein report for the Sacramento Bee.

Health Costs: Hospitals increasingly are using direct marketing and free medical screenings to entice consumers to use their services. That's fine, writes Shannon Brownlee for Time, but perhaps more scrutiny of the nonprofit status of many hospitals is in order.

Health Reform: Will the federal government have enough money to create its own national health insurance exchange alongside the states' exchanges? That's a real concern, Sarah Kliff writes for the Washington Post.

Health Policy Valentines: Check out the nerd humor at the hashtag #healthpolicyvalentines. Joanne Kenen rounds them up in the Association of Health Care Journalists' Covering Health blog.

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Photo credit: Eli Duke via Flickr

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Reporting on Health invites fellows and friends who are attending the AHCJ conference  to join us for drinks and appetizers from 6:30-8 p.m. April 24 at Pedro's Restaurant  & Cantina, 3935 Freedom Circle, Santa Clara.  We'll buy a drink for the first 30 folks who arrive and provide appetizers for all. RSVP here.

Since the passage of the ACA, hospital consolidation has dramatically increased. Our webinar will give an overview of this trend, clarify what’s at stake for consumers, and give journalists fresh ideas for reporting in new, incisive ways. Our panel will include experts Martin Gaynor and Paul Ginsburg, as well as NYT’s Margot Sanger-Katz. More info here.

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