Boston Globe Schools might end letters on obesity
Bartlett’s department is recommending that the weight and height screenings of students in grades 1, 4, 7, and 10 continue because the program has helped officials gather valuable data to monitor trends in childhood obesity and identify possible system-wide solutions. In addition, such letters, intended to foster conversations between parents and their child’s physician about weight and exercise, appear not to help stem childhood obesity rates, according to a 2011 study of a similar program in the California public schools.

Modern HealthcareQuest, CDC team up on hepatitis C research program
In an unusual collaboration, laboratory services provider Quest Diagnostics is opening up its database of lab results to work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on a research program on hepatitis C focused on baby boomers, whose members account for roughly two-thirds of the 3.2 million Americans infected with the disease. The goal is to increase diagnosis and treatment of the disease, which many people don’t know they have.

 Washington Post –  Spike in Md. heroin deaths prompts series of meetings, including one with O’Malley
In response to a spike in deaths from heroin overdoses last year in Maryland, Gov. Martin O’Malley’s administration said Wednesday that it will hold a series of meetings with local health and law enforcement officials as part of an effort to reverse the trend. Those efforts, the department said, will include several “roundtable” discussions with local public health and law enforcement officials.

Politico Role reversal: Republicans dispense Obamacare advice
To prepare, Republican congressional staffers have been participating in calls and meetings hosted by Obama administration officials to inform them about the basics of the law, such as how enrollment will work, who will be eligible and how to sign up. The events have been open to Democrats, as well.

CNN – Texas House passes restrictive abortion measure
A state Senate committee is scheduled to vote Thursday on whether to send its version of the bill to the full Senate.The legislation would ban abortions past 20 weeks of gestation, require abortion clinics to become ambulatory surgical centers, tighten usage guidelines for the drug RU486 and require doctors who perform abortions to have admitting privileges at a hospital within 30 miles of the clinic at which they’re providing abortion services.