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What We’re Reading: Eyedrops Recalled; Inaccessible Weight Loss Drugs; Doctor, GOP Governor Spar

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CDC warns against EzriCare Artificial Tears, which were recalled by the manufacturer; certain weight loss drugs not covered by most payers; Mississippi's Republican governor denies being privately in support of Medicaid expansion.

EzriCare Eyedrops May Cause Bacterial Infection, Resulting in Death and Blindness

A brand of eye drops sold online at Walmart and Amazon, EzriCare Artificial Tears, was recalled by its manufacturer on Thursday after the CDC urged consumers to “stop using” these over-the-counter eyedrops after 1 person died and at least 3 people had permanent vision loss, according to NBC News. The CDC has identified at least 55 people in 12 states with Pseudomonas aeruginosa, a type of drug-resistant bacterial infection, with possible links to EzriCare Artificial Tears. Cases have been identified in California, Colorado, Connecticut, Florida, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Nevada, Texas, Utah, Washington, and Wisconsin.

Weight Loss Drugs Present Cost Barriers for Patients Who May Benefit the Most

Despite a rise in popularity for the weight loss drug, semaglutide, otherwise known by the brands, Ozempic and Wegovy, steep prices and short supply in pharmacies nationwide is a growing frustration for doctors who treat overweight and obese patients, according to NBC News. These drugs can cost more than $1000 a month and are not insured by most health insurance plans. Furthermore, low-income and racially and ethnic diverse individuals who might benefit the most from these drugs are the least likely to be able to get them.

GOP Governor Denies Being Privately in Favor of Medicaid Expansion

Mississippi’s Republican Gov. Tate Reeves privately said that expanding Medicaid coverage would be in the best interest of the state, but he would not support expansion due to personal political interest, revealed Dan Jones, MD, who previously who led the University of Mississippi Medical Center before serving as chancellor of the university until 2015, according to The Associated Press. Jones made the disclosure during a press conference organized by Democrats who want to expand Medicaid in the state, which has some of the country's poorest health outcomes. Reeves denied the conversation in a statement on Twitter.

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