Editorial pages feature opinions on vaccinations, AIDS, mental health care, gene editing and more.
The New York Times: Infecting People Isn’t A Religious Right
It’s no coincidence that measles is spreading across the United States after a decade in which the number of parents claiming exemption for their children from vaccination has grown. The outbreak has been most intense in New York, particularly in deeply insular ultra-Orthodox Jewish communities in Brooklyn and upstate that have been vulnerable to misinformation and resistant to vaccination. (5/21)
Stat: Vaccinations Will Take A Hit If The Trump Administration Topples The Affordable Care Act
In the midst of the country’s worst measles outbreak in 25 years, President Trump made an abrupt about-face on vaccinations. Before becoming president, he had spread vaccination fears by peddling anti-vaccine tropes on Twitter and meeting with anti-vaccine conspiracists. When faced with the growing measles outbreak, the president seems to have changed his tune and now urges Americans to “get their shots.” Behind the scenes, though, his administration’s efforts could undermine public health efforts to ensure that children and adults get the vaccinations they need to prevent illness. (John Aloysius Cogan Jr., 5/22)
The Hill: Ending AIDS Requires US Investment
A new study reinforces the opportunity at hand to end the AIDS epidemic. The study found that of 1,000 couples with one partner receiving treatment to suppress HIV, there were zero cases of transmission to the HIV-negative partner. These findings offer new proof that, if appropriate resources and implementation of treatment combined with intensive primary prevention can be scaled up, we can defeat this devastating virus. (Drs. Mark Dybul and former Sen. William Frist, 5/21)
Boston Globe: Getting People The Behavioral Health Care They Need
One in 5 American adults struggles with a mental health condition, but less than half of the 46.6 million who require treatment actually get it. Experts point to a number of reasons to explain why people don’t get the treatment they need, including the unfounded, outdated stigma around seeking help. But many Americans simply can’t afford or access treatment. (Sen. Elizabeth Warren and Rep. Joe Kennedy III, 5/20)
The Washington Post: Technology Like CRISPR Can Be Used To Customize Our Babies. It Needs Regulation.
When Chinese scientist He Jiankui announced last November his experiments making heritable genetic changes in human embryos followed by live births of twins, alarms went off. What shocked many scientists and others was how Mr. He used new technology for gene editing without serious oversight or transparency, amid grave questions about the medical rationale and potential future damage. One good thing came out of this: Mr. He spurred a more deliberate, international effort to answer the hard questions. Now that effort must lead to stricter regulation. (5/21)
The Hill: Nursing Home Care: A Growing Crisis For An Aging America
America is about to be overrun. Not by new immigrants or millennials, but by nonagenarians and other seniors who will soon dominate the landscape demographically. We already are older than we have ever been as a country but, for all of the hype and hoopla surrounding the new generations, the older generations will need more post-retirement, nursing home and in-home care than ever before. (Andrew Stein and Mark Penn, 5/21)
Miami Herald: We Must Attack Opioid Overdoses With The Same Aggressiveness That We Did With HIV
Congress should pass the CARE Act to deliver funding and infrastructure proportionate to the size and scale of our nation’s addiction crisis. If we truly want to stop the overdose epidemic, then let’s treat addiction like the national public health emergency it is. (Yngvild Olsen, 5/20)
Sacramento Bee: Trump Is Aiming To Hit California Where Hurts – Again
Get out your rakes. President Trump is attacking California’s forest fire management again. Wildfire season is almost here and, in an ongoing effort to make sure California is punished each and every day for not being a handmaiden to the daily calamity in Washington, Trump’s Department of Agriculture and the U.S. Forest Service are playing games with California’s firefighting budget. They’re trying to violate the California Fire Assistance Agreement, known as the CFAA, which doesn’t expire until 2020, according to a story by McClatchy DC’s Emily Cadei. (5/21)
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.
Source : Kaiser Health