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What We're Reading: Limiting Ads Against Drug Makers; Healthcare Spending After Tax Returns; Hep A Outbreak


A first-of-its-kind law in Tennessee will limit the language lawyers can use in ads seeking to sue drug makers; consumers spend significantly more on healthcare in the week after they get their tax return; New Hampshire has seen 79 new cases of hepatitis A since November.

Tennessee Law Would Limit Ads for Suing Drug Makers

Consumers Spend More on Healthcare After Getting Tax Refunds

Hepatitis A Outbreak in New Hampshire

Tennessee has adopted a first-of-its-kind law that, starting July, will limit the language lawyers can use in ads soliciting patients who may have been harmed by a drug or medical device. According to STAT News, the law will not prohibit the running of ads as a whole, but it will place certain restrictions on the ads, including banning use of language suggesting that they are medical warnings or not disclosing that the ad was paid for by a lawyer, as well as not allowing the display of logos of government agencies like the FDA. The law will also require that ads tell consumers to consult with their doctor before stopping the medication.Consumers increase their total out-of-pocket healthcare spending by 60% in the week after receiving their tax return, according to an analysis from JP Morgan Chase, which analyzed 1.2 million checking account holders who received a tax refund between 2014 and 2016. Spending remained higher in the 75 days following tax returns, during which consumers spent 20% more than they did before the refund. Consumers were more likely to visit their dentists’ and doctors’ offices, as well as pay outstanding hospital bills.Since November, New Hampshire has seen 79 new cases of hepatitis A, a significant spike in the typical 6-7 cases seen per year. In March alone, there were 33 new cases, causing state officials to urge people in the state to get vaccinated, reported New Hampshire Union Leader. Beth Daly, chief of the state’s Bureau of Infectious Disease Control has attributed the outbreak to people in the state using recreational drugs, as well as homeless individuals. Since the outbreak, 1 person has died as a result of the infection.

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