Recycling transplanted organs to others in need; President Obama on NBC’s Late Night show with Jimmy Fallon says legalizing marijuana requires taking a public health approach; plus, abortion restriction measures on the November ballot in many states. Those headlines and more topping public health headlines today, Thursday, April 26, 2012.
TIME – Organ Recycling: One Man’s Failed Kidney Transplant Gives Life to Another
It turns out you can recycle just about anything these days — even kidneys and other organs donated for transplants. Recently in Chicago, in what is believed to be the first documented case of its kind in the U.S., a transplanted kidney that was failing was removed from a patient while he was still alive and given to somebody else.
Washington Post – GOP pulls its budget punches as follow up legislation advances on Capitol Hill
Republicans controlling the House are opting for the politically safe route as they follow up their tightfisted, tea party-driven budget with less controversial steps to cut spending. Instead of big reductions in Medicaid and Medicare, top GOP lawmakers are sticking mostly with familiar proposals like cutting money for President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul and federal employee pensions while reaching out to Democrats to help pass annual spending bills.
Washington Post – Jimmy Fallon and President Obama slow jam the news
Fallon: “Due to economic pressures the influence on voters could likely see…oh forget it. Are you going to legalize weed or what?” Obama laughs. “I figured that’s what Bobo was going to ask,” he says, adding, “We’re not going to be legalizing ‘weed, or what’ anytime soon. But what we are trying to do is make sure that when it comes to drugs we are not just thinking about law enforcement, we’re also thinking about treating it as a public health problem.”
Associated Press – If health law dies, business will set the rules
If the Supreme Court strikes down President Barack Obama’s health-care overhaul, don’t look to government for what comes next. Employers and insurance companies will take charge. They’ll borrow some ideas from the overhaul, ditch others, and push even harder to cut costs.
Associated Press – Health care debate: high stakes for those with HIV
For many HIV-positive Americans, and those who advocate on their behalf, these are days of anxious waiting as the Supreme Court ponders President Barack Obama’s health care overhaul. This loose-knit community — made up of activists, health professionals and an estimated 1.2 million people living with HIV — has invested high hopes in the Affordable Care Act, anticipating that it could dramatically improve access to lifesaving care and treatment. The act is now in limbo as the high court deliberates on its constitutionality, notably its requirement that most Americans obtain health insurance. A ruling could come in June.
USAToday – Abortion restrictions gain steam in the states
New restrictions on abortion are sweeping through legislatures from Virginia to Arizona, and voters in some states could see proposed constitutional amendments on November ballots that would define life as beginning at conception. The 2012 anti-abortion push is not as heavy as last year, when legislators in 24 states, many elected in the 2010 Republican tide, passed a record 92 laws restricting abortions, according to the Guttmacher Institute, a group that conducts sexual and reproductive health research, policy analysis and public education.