Daily Briefing: Mad Cows, Medicaid Woes, and Juking the Stats in Mental Health
Mad Cow: A case of mad cow disease has been detected in a dairy cow in Central California, but government officials downplayed any risk to humans, the Associated Press reports. Some food safety experts say too few cows are being randomly tested for bovine spongiform encephalopathy (BSE), which is rare but can be fatal to humans who eat meat from infected cows.
Medical Debt: Accretive Health, a medical debt collection agency based in Minnesota is drawing criticism for its aggressive practices, including stationing employees in hospital emergency rooms, Jessica Silver-Greenberg reports for the New York Times.
Veterans' Health: An investigation of the V.A. mental health system finds officials "juking the stats" to make it appear as if veterans are getting more timely mental treatment than they actually are, NPR's Larry Abramson reports.
HIV/AIDS: AIDS activists are anxiously awaiting the Supreme Court's decision on the Affordable Care Act, because the health reform law would remove a longstanding Catch-22 for HIV-positive patients who can't qualify for Medicaid health benefits until they are too sick to benefit from antiretroviral treatments that could keep them healthy, David Crary reports for the Associated Press.
Medicaid: Policymakers' efforts to curb emergency room use by Medicaid patients could end up costing taxpayers even more, Carla Johnson reports for the Associated Press.
Photo credit: Jelle via Flickr