Managed Care e-News
Oct. 23, 2012

Survey: Seniors satisfied with Medicare, anxious about future
Kaiser Health News
Although most seniors appear to be at least somewhat satisfied with their Medicare coverage, many are deeply worried about what the future may hold for the program, according to a national survey.More

The benefits and challenges of Medicaid managed care
On paper, Medicaid is the best health plan anywhere. It covers almost every imaginable service, with zero payment due from the patient. In practice, the reality of Medicaid is quite different. Patients have insufficient access to healthcare providers and lack of coordination and continuity of care, mainly because of low payment rates; despite this, states and the federal government face rapid growth in total program costs.More

Accountable care explained: An experiment in state health policy
The Affordable Care Act and state fiscal pressures have spawned an array of new Medicaid cost containment and quality improvement schemes. Among the most ambitious is a healthcare delivery system whose components are called accountable care organizations. States are moving ahead on their own. An increasing number are adapting the ACO model for Medicaid in hopes of providing less fragmented care at lower costs.More

Epilepsy drug reduces weight in obese patients
Eisai Co.'s epilepsy drug Zonegran helped obese people lose weight, according to a study that shows the potential of another antiseizure medication to aid in weight reduction. Obese people who took 400 milligrams of Zonegran a day for a year had a 7.3 pounds greater weight loss than those on a placebo, according to the study. More

FDA advisers back drug for short bowel syndrome
U.S. drug advisers backed a drug to treat a rare and serious bowel disorder for which there is no long-term treatment available in the United States. A panel of outside advisers to the Food and Drug Administration agreed that NPS Pharmaceuticals Inc had demonstrated that the drug is safe and improves absorption of fluid and nutrients in the intestines of adults with short bowel syndrome.More

Breast cancer affects 1 in 1,000 men
The Sheboygan Press via USA Today
Although rare, breast cancer in men is not unheard of. According to the American Cancer Society, a man's lifetime risk of developing breast cancer is 1 in 1,000. For women, the risk is closer to 1 in 8.More

Can allergies thwart fatal colon cancer?
HealthDay News
A new study suggests that people who suffer from both hay fever and asthma may be less likely to die from colon cancer. The research found that people with both hay fever and asthma were 17 percent less likely to die from colon cancer compared with people who have neither condition. But individuals with hay fever or asthma had little reduction in their risk of fatal colon cancer, according to the report.More

Multivitamin use linked to lowered cancer risk
The New York Times
After a series of conflicting reports about whether vitamin pills can stave off chronic disease, researchers announced that a large clinical trial of nearly 15,000 older male doctors followed for more than a decade found that those taking a daily multivitamin experienced 8 percent fewer cancers than the subjects taking dummy pills.More

Yearly physicals deemed 'meaningless' for healthy people
MyHealthNewsDaily via Fox News
Even when healthy, some people religiously head to the doctor every year for a physical exam, which is often covered by health insurance. But a new review from Danish researchers concludes there is little benefit to such routine exams on healthy people.More

Study: Cholesterol is falling in adults
The New York Times
Cholesterol levels in adults are falling, and changes in the amount of trans fats in the American diet may be part of the reason, new research suggests. The findings, published in The Journal of the American Medical Association, were celebrated as something of a triumph by health authorities, who said the data showed that the nation had reached its 2010 goal of getting the average total cholesterol level in adults below 200 milligrams per deciliter. More

Study will break down Alzheimer's genetically
The Columbus Dispatch
Researchers at Massachusetts General Hospital will study the genomes of 1,500 Alzheimer's disease patients and their relatives in a project aimed at finding the genetic causes of the disorder.More

Genes and immune system affected by poverty and stress
Medical News Today
Childhood poverty, adult stress and demographics, including sex, age and ethnicity, leave a mark on individuals' genes, which may contribute to their immune response. The current finding, published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, set out to examine how our experiences before birth and in the years that follow can influence the way our lives turns out.More

Brain images may reveal PTSD risk before disasters
MyHealthNews Daily
People with weak connections in certain parts of their brains may be at increased risk for anxiety or post-traumatic stress disorder after a traumatic experience, a new study from Japan suggests.More

Children with ADHD say stimulant drugs help them
The Washington Post and Reuters
Children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder who take stimulants such as Ritalin tend to feel that the drugs help them control their behavior and do not turn them into "robots," as many skeptics assume, a study reported.More