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So far Paul Natinsky has created 106 blog entries.

Cannabis Advocates Look To End Controlled Substance Tag

A group of Michigan citizens and organizations is suing the Michigan Board of Pharmacy to eliminate marijuana from the Schedule I list of controlled substances.

The state’s Public Health Code, which was enacted in 1978, treats marijuana like opioids and heroin, and that is “unconstitutional under Michigan law,” wrote Michael Komorn, attorney for the residents and organizations in the complaint recently filed in the Court of Claims.

“Even opium, a ‘hard narcotic’ and the root of the opioid epidemic, is a Schedule 5 drug when sold in small concentrations,” he said. “As there is no rational basis to classify marijuana with hard narcotics, it now must be classified below Schedule 5. As […]

Cannabis Advocates Look To End Controlled Substance Tag2019-02-12T22:30:16+00:00

Ads For Short-Term Plans Overwhelm Searches

By STEVEN FINDLAY
Consumers shopping for insurance online last fall — using search terms such as “Obamacare plans,” “ACA enroll” and “cheap health insurance” — were most often directed to websites that promote individual health plans that didn’t meet consumer protections of the Affordable Care Act, according to a new study.

They also failed to get adequate information about those plans’ limitations, according to the analysis by researchers at Georgetown University’s Center on Health Insurance Reforms.

The study probed online marketing practices in eight states.
“It was disturbing, but not unexpected, to find such a high proportion of misleading ads and come-ons,” said Sabrina Corlette, the lead author. “That raises the risk that consumers […]

Ads For Short-Term Plans Overwhelm Searches2019-02-12T22:26:16+00:00

On Point With POs: Community Health Navigators

By  EWA MATUSZEWSKI
Community Health Navigators, Medical Assistants Gain New Respect—And Billing Codes
It’s not unusual for words and phrases to fall in and out of favor in the healthcare space, but it seems once they are assigned a billing code people start to take notice. Such is the case with “community health navigator.” Frequently used in conjunction with the social determinants of health (SDOH), the role of a community health navigator is rightly taking on significance as the go-to solution finder for the web of challenges that can vex consumers, often in the context of primary care, seeking non-medical answers to their quality of life issues.

Community health navigators are used in […]

On Point With POs: Community Health Navigators2019-02-12T22:21:18+00:00

Compliance Corner: Eliminating Kickbacks

By REESA N. BENKOFF & DUSTIN T. WACHLER
Effective Oct. 24, 2018, the Substance Use-Disorder Prevention that Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment for Patients and Communities Act (SUPPORT Act) aims to combat the nationwide opioid and other substance abuse crisis by improving treatment and recovery options, increasing education and prevention, safeguarding communities, and fighting deadly synthetic drugs. The SUPPORT Act is a bipartisan, wide-ranging federal law comprised of over 70 individual bills, including the Eliminating Kickbacks in Recovery Act of 2018 (EKRA). EKRA establishes a new all-payor federal anti-kickback law applicable to recovery homes, clinical treatment facilities, and laboratories. While EKRA was intended to prohibit patient brokers who profit […]

Compliance Corner: Eliminating Kickbacks2019-02-12T22:16:52+00:00

Shirkey Challenges Industry On Uninsured

While the Legislature launches into its latest look into reducing auto insurance rates, Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey (R-Clarklake) said he will be asking the insurance industry to come up with “creative solutions” to entice uninsured drivers to come in compliance with the state law requiring drivers to carry insurance.

In Michigan, 19 percent of drivers are tooling around uninsured, the nation’s fourth-highest rate, according to Insurance Research Council. The country’s most insured state is Maine, where 4.5 percent of drivers are uninsured.

If the insurance industry is able to reduce rates for certain populations, possibly to those burdened by a bad credit rating, it may entice more customers to buy the […]

Shirkey Challenges Industry On Uninsured2019-02-12T22:10:50+00:00

Integrated Primary Care Clinic Opens

MedNetOne Health Solutions (MedNetOne), a health care management organization offering infrastructure, clinical and technology services to more than 900 private practice physicians and other independent care providers, including behavioral health specialists, has been selected by Judson Center to provide clinical oversight to its new integrated primary care clinic, Judson Center Family Health Clinic, opening February 1, 2019 in Judson Center’s Warren location.

Judson Center is a multi-county human service agency providing autism programs, behavioral health services, child and family services including foster care and adoption in tandem with its affiliate, Child Safe Michigan, and employment services for adults with developmental disabilities. The organization received nearly $700,000 in grant funding in support […]

Integrated Primary Care Clinic Opens2019-02-12T22:06:05+00:00

Supremes Take Case On Where Medical Pot Can Grow

The Michigan Supreme Court agreed Jan. 23 to hear oral arguments in a lawsuit challenging whether local governments can restrict where medical marijuana caregivers can grow marijuana for medicinal purposes.

Byron Township is asking the state’s highest court to reverse a July Michigan Court of Appeals decision that held the Michigan Medical Marijuana Act (MMMA) doesn’t allow municipalities to restrict where caregivers can grow medical marijuana.

“The decision of the Court of Appeals is clearly erroneous,” wrote Grand Rapids attorney Craig Noland in the Township’s application to appeal. “If left undisturbed, the decision effectively renders any and all zoning land use regulations, which address caregiver grow operations, void and unenforceable.”

The township also […]

Supremes Take Case On Where Medical Pot Can Grow2019-02-12T22:01:37+00:00

New Neonatal ICU

DETROIT — To address the significant need to manage and minimize neurological complications associated with preterm and term newborn babies, Children’s Hospital of Michigan announced its newly developed Neuro-Neonatal Intensive Care Unit (NeuroNICU).

Children’s Hospital of Michigan’s NeuroNICU is the first-of-its-kind in the state of Michigan and one of a select few across the nation, according to DMC sources. This program offers a specially trained team of clinicians dedicated to providing an appropriate environment that will help optimize neurologic and developmental outcomes for this highly vulnerable population.

“We are excited to join other select premier children’s hospitals throughout the country in establishing the NeuroNICU program,” said Girija Natarajan, MD, Co-Chief Division of […]

New Neonatal ICU2019-02-12T21:57:17+00:00

Analysis: Can States Fix Disaster?

By ELISABETH ROSENTHAL
Last month, California’s new governor, Gavin Newsom, promised to pursue a smörgåsbord of changes to his state’s health care system: state negotiation of drug prices, a requirement that every Californian have health insurance, more assistance to help middle-class Californians afford it and health care for undocumented immigrants up to age 26.

The proposals fell short of the sweeping government-run single-payer plan Newsom had supported during his campaign — a system in which the state government would pay all the bills and effectively control the rates paid for services. (Many California politicians before him had flirted with such an idea, before backing off when it was estimated that it could […]

Analysis: Can States Fix Disaster?2019-02-12T21:54:50+00:00

Lawsuit: Oxycontin Fortune Revealed

By CHRISTINE WILLMSEN & MARTHA BEBINGER
The first nine months of 2013 started off as a banner year for the Sackler family, owners of the pharmaceutical company that produces OxyContin, the addictive opioid pain medication. Purdue Pharma paid the family $400 million from its profits during that time, claims a lawsuit filed by the Massachusetts attorney general.

However, when profits dropped in the fourth quarter, the family allegedly supported the company’s intense push to increase sales representatives’ visits to doctors and other prescribers.

Purdue had hired a consulting firm to help reps target “high-prescribing” doctors, including several in Massachusetts. One physician in a town south of Boston wrote an additional 167 prescriptions for […]

Lawsuit: Oxycontin Fortune Revealed2019-02-12T21:51:23+00:00