Health Care – Georgia court reinstates six-week abortion ban

It was a mixed day for abortion rights advocates. We’ll see the details. PLUS: Why the COVID-19 pandemic saw a significant drop in measles vaccinations for children worldwide.

Welcome to Overnight Health Care, where we’re following the latest moves on policy and news affecting your health. For The Hill, we’re Nathaniel Weixel and Joseph Choi. Someone sent you this newsletter?

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Georgia Supreme Court approves six-week abortion ban

Georgia’s state Supreme Court on Wednesday reinstated the state’s ban on abortion after about six weeks of pregnancy.

The court granted the state’s emergency petition, and stayed a lower court ruling from last week where a judge called the ban “unconstitutional.”

Reproductive rights groups have argued that the state’s abortion ban violates the state’s constitution.

They won a judgment from Fulton County Superior Court, where Judge Robert McBurney ruled earlier this month that the ban was illegal.

According to the ACLU, patients who scheduled abortion appointments last week are being turned away.

  • Georgia’s Fairness and Equality of Living Infants (Life) Act, passed in 2019, would ban abortions in the state once a fetal heartbeat is detected, usually around six weeks of pregnancy.
  • In June, the US Supreme Court’s Roe v. After Wade was overturned, a complex patchwork of state laws emerged with conservative states, especially in the South and Midwest, moving quickly to enact new abortion restrictions and even near-total bans.

Many people do not yet know they are pregnant at six weeks, which is the earliest fetal cardiac electrical activity can be detected. Electrical activity is not the same as the heartbeat, although the law is often referred to as the “law of the heartbeat”.

Read more here.

Kansas court allows telemedicine for abortion pills

A Kansas state court struck down a 2011 law that barred doctors from providing medication abortions via telemedicine.

Shawnee County District Court Judge Teresa Watson granted a temporary injunction barring enforcement of a state law that requires physicians to administer abortion-inducing drugs while in the room with the patient.

Still, the Kansas Supreme Court may ultimately weigh in before allowing telemedicine abortions to resume.

  • In June, the Supreme Court’s Roe v. Since the decision to overturn Wade, women have increasingly turned to abortion pills when they need to terminate a pregnancy. It has been found to be very safe.
  • Medication abortion requires two pills, approved by the Food and Drug Administration, for the first 10 weeks of pregnancy.

Mifepristone, a drug that blocks the hormones needed for pregnancy, was approved in 2000. This is followed by misoprostol.

The FDA temporarily removed the requirement to give mifepristone in person at a clinic or hospital due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and the Biden administration made the change permanent in December, allowing doctors to prescribe the drug digitally and then mail it The way was paved. patients pills.

In 2020, medication abortions accounted for 54 percent of all pregnancy terminations in the US

But 18 states have laws that prohibit the use of telemedicine for medication abortions.

Bacterial infection linked to 1 in 8 deaths in 2019

In a study published Monday in The Lancet, a vast group of collaborators reports the first global estimates of mortality from bacterial pathogens.

The study found that in 2019, 7.7 million deaths worldwide were linked to bacterial infections. This estimate was 13.6 percent of all global deaths that year, or about 1 in 8.

This analysis highlights the importance of understanding how many deaths are caused by bacterial infections, and the related issue of antimicrobial resistance, which has been on the rise in recent decades.

Taking a global view puts into perspective how many more deaths could occur if the antibiotics currently in use become less effective.

The team used 343 million individual records and pathogen isolates to estimate deaths and infection types.

Read more here.

Lack of mental health providers may increase youth suicide rates: study

Suicide rates among youth ages 5 to 19 coincide with a growing shortage of mental health care providers at the county level, according to the results of a new study.

The findings were published in JAMA Pediatrics and reflect data from 2015 and 2016.

However, national statistics show that more than 157 million Americans currently live in an area with a shortage of mental health care professionals.

A total of 5,034 youth died by suicide within the study window, most of whom were male and white.

Before adjusting for confounding factors, the researchers found that youth suicide rates were 41 percent higher in counties with provider shortages, at 5.09 deaths per 100,000 youth, compared to 3.62 deaths per 100,000 in areas without shortages. .

More than two-thirds of the 3,133 counties included in the study lacked mental health care providers. These counties were more likely to have uninsured children, have lower educational attainment, higher unemployment and poverty, and were more often rural.

Read more here.

40 million children at risk of not getting measles vaccine

According to a joint report by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), worldwide measles vaccinations among children have declined significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic, making the disease more common worldwide. poses an “imminent threat”. ,

In 2021, a record high of nearly 40 million children missed a dose of the measles vaccine: Nearly 25 million children did not receive their first dose, an 11 percent increase from 2020. Additional 14.7 million children missed their second dose, report finds, lowest level vaccinated since 2008

The delay increases the risk of a measles outbreak, and the agencies said now is the time for public health officials to ramp up vaccination efforts and strengthen surveillance.

  • Measles is highly contagious, but is almost completely preventable through vaccination. A country needs a vaccination rate of at least 95 per cent to achieve herd immunity and eliminate the virus.
  • But the world is well under it, as only 81 percent of children have received their first measles-containing vaccine dose, and only 71 percent of children have received their second vaccine dose.

“For a disease like measles that is so highly contagious, that really leaves us with a large number of unvaccinated children and a very high level of risk for outbreaks and for cross-border crossings. … Everywhere Measles is a threat,” said Cynthia Hatcher, one of the authors of the report who oversees the CDC’s African measles elimination work.

Read more here.

what are we studying

  • COVID Relief Fund Trick Helps Rural Children Fill Mental Health Services Gap (Kaiser Health News)
  • One-third of US labs have stopped using race-based equations to diagnose kidney disease (stat)
  • Adderall and amoxicillin shortages raise questions about transparency and accountability in Big Pharma (NBC)

state by state

  • Work-from-home culture takes root in California (Sacramento Bee)
  • With term drawing over, Baker reassigns chief medical examiner, highest-paid employee of his administration (Boston Globe)
  • The Oklahoma State Health Department is silent on the existence of an Epidemic Center, Problems at the Health Laboratory (KRMG)

That’s it for today, thanks for reading. Visit The Hills Health Care page for the latest news and coverage. see you next week.


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