What We're Reading: California Eyes Generic Drug Label; Workplace Suicides Rise; Possible New OCD Therapy

January 10, 2020

California is looking to launch a generic drug label; workplace suicides are on the rise; multisensory stimulation therapy could help those with OCD.

California Considering Launching Generic Drug Sales for Residents

Under Governor Gavin Newsom’s new proposal, California may become the first state to sell its own brand of generic prescription drugs, according to the Los Angeles Times. The move is part of an effort to lower healthcare costs across the state and would include contracts with existing generic drug makers. Specific prescriptions to be manufactured under the agreement and a timeline have yet to be announced. The proposal has been met with skepticism and support among politicians and critics. More details are expected to be released Friday, when the governor proposes the plan to the state legislature, according to NBC News.

Bureau of Labor Statistics Shows Rise in Workplace Suicides

A story in The Washington Post chronicles a rise in workplace suicides, as documented by a Bureau of Labor Statistics report published last month. In 2018, there were 304 workplace suicides in the United States, which is an 11% increase from 2017 and marks the highest number in 26 years, when the bureau first started tracking the data. However, the total number is probably undercounted, and the count does not include “ambiguous deaths, such as from drug overdoses,” the article stated.

Rubber Hand Contamination May Help Those With OCD

According to new research published in Frontiers in Neuroscience, contaminating a rubber hand could help patients with obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) overcome the condition without stress-inducing exposure therapy. In a procedure called “multisensory stimulation therapy” researchers had patients contaminate a fake hand as opposed to their own hands. Randomized clinical trials need to be conducted to further test this technique. Worldwide, OCD affects as many as 1 in 50 people.