Beginning in July, the Pennsylvania Department of Health will collect data about all babies born addicted to opioids.
The longstanding problem is that data are scarce about the number of babies born dependent on drugs, according to a joint WITF/ NPR story. Pennsylvania Department of Human Services [DHS] Secretary Ted Dallas said the department has relied on “reasonably good” estimates.
About 3,700 babies on Medicaid were born with neonatal abstinence syndrome between 2013 and 2014 in the state, according to WITF.
An effort to provide $600 million to fight the growing heroin and opioid crisis failed yesterday. An amendment by New Hampshire Sen. Jeanne Shaheen, and backed by Pennsylvania Sen. Bob Casey, would’ve provided money for prevention and treatment services.
The Obama administration has proposed $1.5 billion in funding for the 2017 fiscal year budget to address widespread abuse of prescription opioid painkillers and heroin, the White House announced Tuesday.
Hepatitis C is the most common blood-borne infection in the United States, affecting an estimated 3.2 million people. The virus mainly affects the liver and can lead to cirrhosis (liver scarring) and liver cancer. Hepatitis C is the leading cause of liver transplants in the U.S.
It is transmitted when an infected person’s blood enters the bloodstream of another person. You should be tested if:
you were born between 1945 and 1965, regardless of other risk factors
you’ve used intravenous or intranasal drugs even once
you’ve engaged in anal intercourse or vigorous, unprotected sex with multiple partners
you had a transfusion of blood or blood products, like plasma, before 1992
you are or have been on hemodialysis
you got a tattoo or piercing in a non-sterile environment
you have sex or share personal care items, like a razor or toothbrush, with someone who has hepatitis C
To get tested:
Ask your healthcare provider if you are eligible for the hepatitis C antibody test. A few Southwest PA sites that screen for hepatitis C are:
Check your benefits. Many companies pay for confidential counseling through an Employee Assistance Program. These are intended to help employees find treatment and resume their careers. Services are often available for family members. Check professional groups.