Health, Medicine & Nutrition
January 2014 Declared "National Radon Action Month" PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Cancer Awareness   
Friday, 27 December 2013 11:14

Help Prevent Lung Cancer in 2014 by Spreading Awareness

January 2014 has been declared "National Radon Action Month" according to the Evironmental Protection Agency.  Health agencies throughout the United States have joined forces to promote awareness of the leading cause of lung cancer for non-smokers.  The American Lung Association, Centers for Disease Control, and National Cancer Institute all agree that radon is a national health problem and encourage radon testing during the January awareness drive.

Radon is a naturally occuring, invisible and odorless radioactive gas.  One in 15 American homes contains high levels of radon.  Millions of Americans are unknowingly exposed to this dangerous gas.  In fact, a recent study by Harvard University ranks radon as America's leading in-home hazard.  By taking simple steps to test your home for radon and fix if necessary, this health hazard can be avoided.

Radon gas is not isolated to certain geographic areas or home types.  Radon problems have been detected in homes in every county in the U.S.  It has caused more American fatalities last year than carbon monoxide, fires and handguns combined!  If a home hasn't been tested for radon in the past two years, EPA and the Surgeon General urge you to take action.  Contact your state radon office for information on locating qualified text kits or qualified radon testers.

Learn more about national radon action month at www.RadonMonth.org

 
10 Weight Loss Resolutions to Skip This Year PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by EverydayHealth.com   
Friday, 27 December 2013 10:55
Four out of five people who make New Year's resolutions will eventually break them, and a third won't even make it until February. According to experts, the real problem is that we make resolutions that are too vague or unachievable — so we quit. For your New Year's weight-loss resolution to work, you need to have accountability and chart your progress. Follow these tips from the experts on resolutions not to make:
  • 'I'm going on a diet.' Don't set yourself up to fail before you even begin. Instead, pledge to make healthy low-calorie food choices. You'll see more weight loss and achieve greater fitness if you simply resolve to cut processed and refined foods from most meals.

  • 'I'm going to the gym every day.' If you've never set foot inside a gym, don't declare that in January you're going to start working out every day. Start slowly and progressively add more workouts until you're exercising for about 30 minutes, five times a week.

  • 'I'm going to skip breakfast.' Think you can save 300 calories if you skip your scrambled eggs and toast? Big mistake. There's serious truth behind what's become a cliché: Breakfast is the most important meal of the day.
Discover seven more weight loss resolutions to avoid.

 
Grassley, Casey Promote Proposal to Allow Residents of Continuing Care Retirement Communities to Receive Medicare Services in Integrated Arrangement PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Grassley Press   
Friday, 20 December 2013 14:31

Friday, Dec. 20, 2013

WASHINGTON -- Sen. Chuck Grassley of Iowa and Sen. Bob Casey of Pennsylvania said today they hope to advance their proposal to make it easier for the residents of Continuing Care Retirement Communities to receive Medicare services through care coordination and disease management services provided onsite.  These services would avoid hospitalizations and lower the total cost of care for seniors as they age in place, and their needs increase.

“The physician payments bill approved in committee depends on the creation of models where providers are willing to take on risk and provide quality care,” Grassley said.  “If nursing home communities are willing to meet those goals and standards, we should allow them that opportunity.  The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation should be testing models like the one suggested in this amendment.”

“While Congress has taken steps to more toward better care coordination, we must continue to look for innovative ways to move the Medicare program forward when treating beneficiaries with multiple chronic conditions,” Casey said.  “I believe Continuing Care Retirement Communities (CCRC) in Pennsylvania and around the country are up to this challenge.”

Grassley and Casey filed but not offer an amendment to the physician payments bill considered in the Finance Committee last week that would require the federal Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation to consider allowing Continuing Care Retirement Communities to receive Medicare services provided under a risk-adjusted, per-person payment arrangement.   Grassley and Casey said these arrangements could improve the efficiency and quality of senior care and align incentives to provide the right care, at the right time, in the right setting.

Medical homes, care coordination and disease management are among the most promising strategies for cost containment and quality improvement in health care delivery, especially the costs associated with Medicare beneficiaries with chronic conditions, the senators said.  There are currently 2,000 Continuing Care Retirement Communities in the United States.  Recent studies, including one in the New England Journal of Medicine, demonstrate that a congregate senior living environment such as in Continuing Care Retirement Communities is the ideal setting to integrate strategies to lower costs and improve outcomes for Medicare seniors because of the near-constant interaction between staff and residents.

Under the Grassley-Casey proposal, the Continuing Care Retirement Communities would accept a diverse group of independent, non-acute seniors whose mix of chronic conditions could benefit from the care coordination and disease management services provided onsite to avoid hospitalizations and lower the total cost of care for seniors as they age in place and their needs increase.  An interdisciplinary health care team led by salaried primary care physicians would integrate comprehensive primary and post-acute health care services into the residential community and coordinate acute and specialist care.  Beneficiaries would receive Medicare services provided under a risk-adjusted, capitated payment arrangement.

Grassley and Casey said they will look for legislative opportunities to advance this proposal in the coming months.

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Health care sticker shock for Iowans PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by Grassley Press   
Friday, 20 December 2013 09:48

Floor Statement of Sen. Chuck Grassley

Iowans’ Sticker Shock Under the Affordable Care Act

Delivered Thursday, Dec. 19, 2013

Mr. President, I come to the floor again to share the voice of one many Iowans who have contacted me over the sticker shock they’re experiencing under the Affordable Care Act.

A constituent in Sioux County writes:

QUOTE:  I am a pastor in rural Iowa and early this past summer, trusting naively in the integrity of our President’s repeated promise that “If you like your health insurance you can keep it. Period[,]” I made a change to my policy, moving to a higher deductible to save the church money.

Now I have been informed that because of that change, my policy is no longer grandfathered and therefore I will be forced out of it in a year and compelled to purchase a MUCH MORE EXPENSIVE (Un)Affordable Care Act compliant policy.

I am young, male, healthy -- and will not qualify for any subsidy.

In effect, because of legislation Democrats supported -- my government is kicking me off from health coverage that I carefully researched, chose, and like a lot -- and forcing me to buy coverage that I do not need at a price I scarcely can afford.

And [the government] has the audacity to resort to Orwellian doublespeak and call such a draconian policy the “Affordable Care Act.”

Please convey to your Democratic colleagues that I grew up on a dairy farm and now pastor a church of farmers.  I am the epitome of middle class America that they claim to champion.

This bill is unjust. It is based on lies to Americans like myself.  It hurts real people -- including the church I serve.  END OF QUOTE.

I have done my job, Mr. President. I have shared this constituent’s message with my colleagues.  I hope they were listening.  I yield the floor.

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Take Our Education Survey (Prostate Cancer) PDF Print E-mail
News Releases - Health, Medicine & Nutrition
Written by ZERO - The End of Prostate Cancer   
Thursday, 19 December 2013 15:15

Join ZERO - The End of Prostate Cancer in our mission of ending prostate cancer by taking our annual patient education survey. This survey is for anyone who has ever been diagnosed with prostate cancer or has had a loved one diagnosed with prostate cancer.

By sharing your experiences with prostate cancer with us, we will be able to create educational materials and programs that are truly reflective of the patient experience.  You are the expert in your prostate cancer and only you can help someone else through the journey.

Our commitment to providing the best patient education information will ensure everyone impacted by prostate cancer has access to up to date information on the disease and its impact, the different treatment options available for prostate cancer today and how to find help and support throughout the prostate cancer journey. No one should have to face prostate cancer alone - ZERO is here to help.

Please CLICK HERE to launch the survey and tell us about your experience.

Complete this survey for the chance to win a Stop Cancer t-shirt! Once you complete the survey, you can enter our t-shirt drawing and sign up to receive ZERO’s electronic newsletter. Thank you for taking the time to share your prostate cancer journey with us!

 
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