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02 May

Financial Burden of Medical Treatment

Out-of-pocket costs for MS drugs soaring.

Health News Results - 142

TUESDAY, Oct. 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Patients are much more likely to take essential medications if they're free, a new Canadian study finds.

It included nearly 800 patients at nine primary care sites in the province of Ontario, who were prescribed 128 essential medications such as antibiotics, pain relievers, antipsychotics and HIV-AIDS drugs, but had trouble sticking to the reg...

MONDAY, Sept. 30, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A new survey shows that rheumatic diseases can be crippling both physically and financially as patients struggle to live with the debilitating conditions.

According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 54 million U.S. adults and as many as 300,000 children are living with a rheumatic disease. This includes conditions such a...

THURSDAY, Sept. 26, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Over the last decade, Americans who get their health insurance through their employer have seen both their premiums and their deductibles rise faster than either their wages or inflation, a new survey shows.

"The single biggest issue in health care for most Americans is that their health costs are growing much faster than their wages are," ...

THURSDAY, Sept. 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The number of U.S. states with adult obesity rates above 35% reached an all-time high of nine in 2018, a new report says.

In 2018, the nine states with adult obesity rates above 35% were: Alabama, Arkansas, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota and West Virginia.

That's two more than the year befor...

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 11, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Alcohol taxes do little to reduce the burden on American taxpayers for the harmful impacts of heavy drinking, a new study finds.

The cost of harm caused by excessive drinking in the United States is just over $2 per drink, with about 80 cents of that shouldered by government. But state and federal alcohol taxes bring in an average of about...

TUESDAY, Sept. 10, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Cancer takes a huge emotional toll on patients, but a new study finds the financial costs are also so high that many are resorting to crowdfunding to help pay their medical bills and related costs.

"The financial consequences of cancer care for patients and their families are substantial," said senior and corresponding author Dr. Benjamin Br...

WEDNESDAY, Sept. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A new study helps confirm a dismal reality: Poor Americans are more likely to die from heart failure than their richer counterparts.

The likely reasons? According to the researchers, higher obesity rates and associated increases in type 2 diabetes appear to be driving two-thirds of the trend.

"This study underscores the disparitie...

TUESDAY, Sept. 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Drugs called tyrosine kinase inhibitors can help certain patients with advanced lung cancer live longer and better. But high out-of-pocket costs might stand in the way, a preliminary study suggests.

Researchers found that of 106 patients who started tyrosine kinase inhibitors (TKIs) for advanced lung cancer, one-quarter with the highest out-o...

WEDNESDAY, Aug. 28, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Medicare patients with multiple sclerosis (MS) saw their medication costs soar by more than sevenfold over a decade, a new study finds.

It's no secret that the costs of MS drugs have skyrocketed in recent years. When the first so-called disease-modifying drugs were approved starting in the 1990s, they cost roughly $8,000 to $11,000 per year...

FRIDAY, Aug. 2, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Cost often influences breast cancer patients' decisions about surgery, even if they have good incomes and insurance, a new study finds.

"Eligible women with early-stage breast cancer often have choices for surgical treatments that are equally effective and result in excellent cancer outcomes," said lead study author Dr. Rachel Greenup. She is a...

WEDNESDAY, July 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- More than 8.7 million years of life and about $94 billion in earnings were lost to cancer in the United States in 2015, researchers say.

Cancer is the nation's second-leading killer and is expected to cause nearly 607,000 deaths this year. These premature deaths and the lost productivity they cause impose a significant economic burden, the s...

TUESDAY, July 2, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- An air ambulance might be your only chance to survive a medical emergency -- but a new study reports it's going to cost you.

The median charge of an air ambulance trip was $39,000 in 2016, about 60% more than the $24,000 charged just four years earlier, researchers found.

That amount is "more than half of the household income for...

FRIDAY, June 28, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Use of ambulances for non-emergency situations soared in New York City after the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a new study finds.

With the advent of Obamacare -- and expanded access to Medicaid -- out-of-pocket costs for an ambulance dropped sharply for many people, making them more likely to ask for one in non-emergency situations, the research...

TUESDAY, June 11, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A daily pill that can block transmission of HIV should be prescribed to people at high risk of infection with the AIDS-causing virus, according to a highly influential panel of experts.

The treatment -- called pre-exposure prophylaxis (PrEP) -- has proven highly effective at preventing HIV spread in clinical trials, an evidence review by the...

THURSDAY, June 6, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The seniors most likely to need paid home care to maintain independent living are the least likely to be able to afford it long-term, a new study reports.

Only two out of five older adults with significant disabilities have the assets on hand to pay for at least a couple of years of extensive in-home care, researchers found.

Without...

THURSDAY, June 6, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- For many Americans under 65 who've battled and survived cancer, the financial fight is far from over. A new report finds that a quarter of adult survivors say they are experiencing "material financial hardship" trying to cover medical costs.

Cancer survivors with and without insurance suffered from high medical bills, according to a team led ...

MONDAY, June 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- They say good help is hard to find, and America's immigration policies could be making it even tougher in the health care field.

Immigration crackdown efforts, the border wall included, are very likely to cost the elderly and disabled the care that they desperately need, a new study argues.

More than 3 million immigrants work in the U...

SUNDAY, June 2, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- More American women under age 65 have been diagnosed sooner and treated earlier for ovarian cancer since the Affordable Care Act went into effect in 2010, new research shows.

And, more women received treatment within 30 days of diagnosis, improving their survival odds, the researchers said.

For the study, t...

TUESDAY, May 28, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Seniors' out-of-pocket costs for cancer drugs continue to rise steadily, with patients paying thousands of dollars each year despite efforts to close the Medicare Part D "donut hole," researchers said.

Prices for 13 anticancer drugs available through Medicare Part D in 2010 rose an average 8% over inflation every year over the past decade,...

THURSDAY, May 23, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- As a rule, high-deductible health plans carry lower premiums than low-deductible plans. But that might not be such a great deal for patients struggling with chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), new research suggests.

Such plans may be impacting the quality of health care for those with the progressive lung disease, researchers report...

WEDNESDAY, May 22, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A solid minority of senior citizens still struggles to afford their prescription medications, a new government report shows.

About 5% of adults 65 and older don't take their medication as prescribed to cut costs, according to survey data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

And nearly 1 in 5 seniors has ask...

TUESDAY, May 7, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Tackling climate change makes economic sense, a new report claims.

The cost of cutting carbon emissions -- enough to meet the goals of the Paris Climate Agreement -- would be offset by reductions in health problems and deaths caused by air pollution, the researchers found.

"These health 'co-benefits' of climate change policy are wide...

THURSDAY, May 2, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Nearly 6 in 10 Americans say they have suffered financial hardship due to health care costs, a new study finds.

Researchers from the American Cancer Society looked at three different types of problems: difficulty paying medical bills, worrying about bills, and delaying or doing without care.

"With increasing prevalence of multiple ch...

WEDNESDAY, May 1, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Multiple sclerosis, epilepsy and Parkinson's can be physically taxing conditions, but new research shows they exact a huge financial toll as well.

Over a 12-year period, out-of-pocket costs for Americans with these illnesses jumped, with the biggest increase seen among people with multiple sclerosis (MS). Those patients paid 20 times more fo...

WEDNESDAY, May 1, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Facial moisturizers are a mainstay against the march of time, smoothing over wrinkles and keeping dry skin supple. But new research shows that women pay a much higher price for that anti-aging weapon than men do.

In the study, dermatologists from Massachusetts General Hospital checked the prices for 110 facial moisturizers from three leading ...

WEDNESDAY, April 24, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A decade from now, more than half of middle-class seniors in the United States will be unable to afford needed housing and personal assistance, a new study contends.

The number of middle-income people over 75 will nearly double to 14 million by 2029, up from about 8 million today, projections show.

About 54% of these seniors ...

FRIDAY, April 19, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Just a 1% decrease in the number of Medicaid recipients who smoke could save the insurance program billions of dollars a year, a new study suggests.

Over one year, that small decline in smoking and its associated health harms would lead to $2.6 billion in total Medicaid savings the following year and millions for each state, researchers f...

TUESDAY, April 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Popular workplace "wellness" programs may not offer a big payoff for workers' health or bosses' bottom lines -- at least in the short term, new research suggests.

In a study of one large U.S. company, researchers found that a wellness program led some workers to change their habits: Participants were more likely to say they were exercising a...

THURSDAY, April 11, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Almost one in five multiple sclerosis patients may be misdiagnosed with the autoimmune disease, according to a new study.

Of 241 previously diagnosed multiple sclerosis (MS) patients referred to two major Los Angeles medical centers for treatment, nearly 18% did not actually have the autoimmune disease, the researchers found.

...

FRIDAY, April 5, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Medicaid expansion under "Obamacare" may have quickly translated into fewer heart disease deaths among middle-aged Americans, a new study suggests.

In 2014, many U.S. states began expanding their Medicaid programs under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) -- making more lower-income residents eligible for coverage. It's known that those expanded pro...

THURSDAY, April 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Getting back to nature may nurture your health, according to a new study that found U.S. counties with more forests and shrublands have lower Medicare costs.

The surprising conclusion comes from an analysis of health and environmental data from 3,086 of the 3,103 counties in the continental United States.

"We took the average of d...

WEDNESDAY, April 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- For many Americans, the cost of lifesaving insulin is simply too high, leading as many as one in four to ration the drug, experts testifying before the House Committee on Energy and Commerce said this week.

The meeting focused primarily on defining the problem and exploring potential solutions, such as lowering the list prices of insulin an...

MONDAY, April 1, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Folks who aren't covered by private insurance are much more likely to get booted out of the hospital early, a new study finds.

Uninsured patients were also more than twice as likely to be transferred to another hospital and 66% more likely to be discharged outright, compared with people with private insurance, the findings showed.

...

THURSDAY, March 28, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- In a finding that brings bad news as America struggles with an opioid epidemic, a new report shows that only four states provide adequate insurance coverage for addiction treatment.

"We are calling on states to ensure health plans cover the full range of effective addiction treatments and address the serious gaps identified in this report,"...

FRIDAY, March 22, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- More American women had health insurance and access to care after the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was fully in place in 2014, and poorest women benefited most, according to a new report.

For the study, researchers examined U.S. National Health Interview Survey data on insurance affordability, access to care and the use of preventive services --...

MONDAY, March 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Even when women have health insurance, high deductibles may delay them from having breast cancer diagnosed and treated, researchers say.

In a study of more than 3 million U.S. women with health insurance, the researchers found that those in plans with high deductibles waited several months more for a breast cancer diagnosis or treatment, versu...

TUESDAY, Feb. 26, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- For people with the deadly skin cancer melanoma, one dose of the drug Keytruda before surgery might stop the cancer in its tracks, according to a groundbreaking new study.

Keytruda (pembrolizumab) is a PD-1 inhibitor, an immunotherapy drug that triggers the body's immune response to attack cancer cells. According to results of this study, the...

TUESDAY, Feb. 26, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- When times are tough, single moms tend to spend more on their children's health care than on their own, a new study finds.

But two-parent families are less likely to make that change, the researchers said.

The study looked at how losing a job, money or health insurance affects a family's health priorities.

"In particular,...

TUESDAY, Feb. 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Millions of Americans with heart disease say they face financial strain because of their medical care, with some skipping meds or cutting back on basics like groceries.

That's the finding of a new national study of heart disease and stroke patients younger than 65 -- a group that's too young for Medicare but often lack health insurance, or "g...

THURSDAY, Feb. 7, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Efforts to keep seniors heart-healthy have saved tens of billions of dollars in U.S. health care costs in recent years, researchers say.

Between 2005 and 2012, health care spending among people 65 and older fell an average of nearly $3,000 per person a year, the new study found. That adds up to a total savings of $120 billion, with about half...

WEDNESDAY, Feb. 6, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Medicare rule changes could trigger a spike in out-of-pocket drug costs for patients with multiple sclerosis (MS).

Due to rules that restrict access and require patients to cover more of the cost, those without low-income subsidies can expect to spend almost $6,900 a year out of pocket for MS medicines, researchers reported.

"It's ...

MONDAY, Feb. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Interpret the data whatever way you will, but a new study shows a jump in women getting long-term contraception in the month following the election of President Donald Trump.

The researchers' theory?

Study author Dr. Lydia Pace acknowledged that "there is limited concrete evidence about why this may have happened," but she stressed th...

MONDAY, Feb. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- One way to get better medical care and more value for your health care dollars is to find yourself a primary care provider, researchers say.

For the study, researchers analyzed data from more than 70,000 U.S. adults who took part in a Medical Expenditure Panel Survey. Of those, more than 49,000 had a primary care doctor and about 21,000 did not...

THURSDAY, Jan. 31, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The first generic version of the widely used Advair Diskus inhaler for asthma and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) has won U.S. Food and Drug Administration approval.

This approval "is part of our longstanding commitment to advance access to lower cost, high-quality generic alternatives," said Dr. Janet Woodcock, director of the ...

FRIDAY, Jan. 25, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- By itself, a Trump administration plan to make drug companies disclose the cost of their medicines in TV ads is unlikely to help tame drug prices, a new study shows.

Researchers did find that revealing the cost of expensive drugs in ads would significantly lower patient demand for those drugs, but that impact largely vanished when the ads incl...

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 23, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Hospital readmissions of patients with gunshot wounds cost at least $86 million a year in the United States, a new study finds.

"So often, gun injuries are talked about in terms of mortality, as one-time events for medical care," said study author Sarabeth Spitzer, a fourth-year student at Stanford University School of Medicine.

"...

WEDNESDAY, Jan. 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A study of nearly 200 poor women living in the St. Louis area found that two out of three had to go without feminine hygiene products at least once over the prior year, due to cost.

About one-fifth -- 21 percent -- said this happened on a monthly basis, and nearly half said they often had to make tough choices between buying food or period-...

TUESDAY, Jan. 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- If you're poor, you'll likely have less success with your hearing aid, a new study finds.

A survey of more than 1,100 Medicare recipients with hearing aids found that 27 percent of low-income users still had a lot of trouble hearing. That compared with just 11 percent of the wealthiest users.

The reason, the study authors suggested, ...

TUESDAY, Jan. 8, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- It's a common belief that rising drug prices are due to the high cost of cutting-edge medications, with manufacturers charging a bundle to make back development expenses for their new products.

But drug companies have also been steadily hiking prices on older brand-name drugs, a new study reports.

Increasing prices for brand-name pil...

MONDAY, Jan. 7, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Higher costs, not better patient care, explain why the United States spends much more on health care than other developed countries, a new study indicates.

U.S. health care spending was $9,892 per person in 2016. That was about 25 percent more than second-place Switzerland's $7,919 and more than twice as high as Canada's $4,753, researchers fou...

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