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What We're Reading: Anthem Ohio Exit; Preventing Legionnaires' Disease; NIH Director Staying

AJMC Staff

Anthem to Withdraw From Ohio Insurance Marketplace

Anthem has announced that it will not offer policies in the Ohio marketplace in 2018, leaving 10,500 Ohioans without an option on the exchange, according to The New York Times. Republican legislators pointed to the news as proof that the markets created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) are spiraling into collapse, making a replacement law an urgent need. Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio) accused the ACA of causing “a declining number of viable health care choices for families and small businesses.”

 

CDC Issues Surveillance Data on Legionnaires’ Disease Outbreaks

In an early release of the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, the CDC published data on over 6000 confirmed cases of Legionnaire’s disease reported across the nation in 2015. They identified the water systems in healthcare facilities as targets for improvement, as these systems can harbor the Legionella bacteria. Confirmed healthcare-associated Legionnaires’ disease kills one-fourth of the people it infects, potentially due to their susceptible health status and the healthcare facility water systems, which can become stagnant and grow a biofilm if not properly maintained.

 

Dr Francis Collins to Remain NIH Director, White House Confirms

The White House has announced that Francis S. Collins, MD, PhD, will remain in his current position as director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), putting to rest speculation about whether he would be replaced. The Washington Post reports that the decision to retain Collins, who was appointed by former President Barack Obama in 2009, has been widely praised by bipartisan lawmakers commending Collins’ qualifications. As he continues to lead the NIH, he will have to contend with challenges like proposed budget cuts and the mounting pressure to research solutions to the opioid epidemic.

 
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