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Hispanics Need Wellness Education With a Twist

I am the third generation of my family to be diagnosed with cancer: my grandmother, mother, father, and even my stepmom all passed away because of it. Six years ago, I got the news of my Stage 3A Breast Cancer. Having health insurance, family support and higher education, and being bilingual, were not enough to protect me from cancer.  Cancer is the leading cause of death among Latinos in this country: according to the American Cancer Society, 1 in 3 Latino women living in the United States will be diagnosed with cancer. Today there are 59.8 million Latinos in the U.S.;… Full Story

Expert Opinion: Medicare For All vs. Price Transparency

The cost of healthcare dominates today’s political discussion; the public consistently ranks it as the  number one issue they want government to address. So far, the discussion has centered on two polar opposite two avenues of approach: greater government control thorough various flavors of “Medicare for all;” and unleashing the forces of market competition through greater healthcare price and quality transparency. One of these two approaches ultimately is likely to prevail at the expense of the other.  Which one will is presently in doubt, but the resolution may not be long in coming. Medicare for All is a central theme… Full Story

Texas Needs to Prepare for 2021 – Now

I recently read an interesting article by the Kaiser Family Foundation analyzing uninsured adults in states not expanding Medicaid coverage as part of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The ACA expanded Medicaid coverage to nearly all adults with incomes up to 138 percent of the Federal Poverty Level (FPL). In examining the Kaiser fact sheet, some interesting points stood out: In the U.S., only 14 states have not expanded Medicaid; If all states expanded Medicaid, 4.4 million uninsured non-elderly adults would be eligible for coverage (1.4 million live in Texas) Of the Texans eligible under Medicaid expansion, 67 percent are… Full Story

How PTSD Changed the Way I Care For Pregnant Women

Appointments with my doctor make me nervous. That’s highly ironic because I’m a doctor, a maternal-fetal medicine specialist who regularly deals with high-risk pregnancies. But ever since developing preeclampsia during my first pregnancy eight years ago, the thought of having my blood pressure taken triggers flashbacks and anxiety. The silver lining is that my experience has changed the way that I care for patients. I was diagnosed with preeclampsia at 32 weeks after my blood pressure rose and I experienced headaches and blurred vision. The condition, which affects upwards of 10 percent of pregnant women, can lead to seizures or… Full Story

The Future of Senior Care in North Texas

There is a boom coming – seniors in need of living quarters that fit their needs. The senior population in the US is approximately 47 million people, but by 2060, the Population Reference Bureau predicts this number will be more than 100 million. The Baby Boomer generation hails as the largest living adult generation, projected to surpass the number of children by the year 2030 for the very first time in U.S. history. With such an unprecedented number of seniors, we are seeing a rising need for facilities that can accommodate those who want help for convenience or find it… Full Story

Does Price Transparency Help You Shop Around?

As of January 1, 2019, all hospitals in Texas have to publish what they charge for all tests, imaging, surgeries, or other procedures. Though many welcome the move toward price transparency, the lists of charges can be difficult to interpret, and, when insurance is factored in, the out-of-pocket costs might look nothing like the posted charge. We spoke with Paul Hain, chief medical officer and divisional senior vice president of market delivery at Blue Cross Blue Shield of Texas, about the impact of the new law.  Comparison shopping is key, right? Price transparency is important because it allows people to understand… Full Story

Expert Opinion: Four Steps to Reduce Workplace Stress

As a manager or leader, the well-being of your staff should be of utmost importance. Workplace stress is detrimental to the overall health and productivity of employees. In recognition of April being National Stress Awareness Month, the following strategies help foster a reduced-stress environment with engaged employees. Understand the Negative Effects of Stress A 2012 study that monitored about 22,000 women over the course of 10 years showed that work-related stress significantly increased the risk of cardiovascular disease. The long hours associated with high-stress jobs present further health problems, which was shown in another study: “Employees who work long hours… Full Story

Expert Opinion: How to Fix the Cost of Care Dilemma

Like most Americans, I am worried about the rising cost of healthcare, but the terrible news is that the real healthcare cost problem hasn’t even arrived yet. And like many people, I’m tired of our health insurance premiums going up. As a business owner, for the last few years I’ve had to make the tough decision of raising premiums on our employees, increasing deductibles, or having our company absorb the increase. Unfortunately, our company’s health premiums have gone up an average of 17% each of the last four years while maintaining the same benefit plan. A 87% increase in insurance… Full Story

Medical City President Erol Akdamar on How to Make Flu Season Less Deadly

If you feel like you have been hearing more about sepsis recently, you are right. Blame the flu. Sepsis is an overwhelming response to infection that can lead to life-threatening organ failure. It’s a serious healthcare industry concern because each year, sepsis affects more than 26 million people worldwide including 270,000 American deaths, making it more deadly than breast cancer, prostate cancer and AIDS combined. Sepsis is often linked to bacterial infections, but the past two flu seasons it has made headlines as a life-threatening complication from the influenza virus. I follow the trends of sepsis on a daily basis… Full Story

Expert Opinion: How to Address the Physician Shortage in Booming DFW

Almost 500 people move to the Metroplex every day. Census data backs it up, and if you pull the lens back to look at the entire state of Texas, we are growing in a big way – 29 million at last count. It won’t be long before we overtake Chicago as the 3rd largest metropolis in the country. Change is coming with this type of growth. Big D is getting bigger, and older. Projections show that by 2030, Texans over the age of 65 will more than double since the last census in 2010. With age, comes the need for… Full Story