Millions of Americans take a low-dose aspirin every day in hopes of preventing a heart attack or stroke. But now the American College of Cardiology and the American Heart Association say to stop taking it if you have no history of heart attack or stroke. The new recommendation comes in the wake of a major study showing that a daily aspirin does nothing to prolong life and increases the risk of gastrointestinal bleeding. Experts say doctors should limit aspirin to people at high heart risk who also have a low risk of bleeding.
Nobody likes to get caught in traffic caused by road repairs but a new study in the International Journal of Sustainable Transportationfinds that preventive road maintenance saves a lot of money, time, and pollution. Researchers say performing maintenance when a road is in its early failure stage ends up saving 10 to 30 percent in cost and saves drivers two to five percent in fuel consumption, tire wear, and vehicle repairs. Keeping roads in good shape also cuts greenhouse gases by as much as two percent.
Two Congressional plans, one from each side of the political spectrum, are competing to blow up the current healthcare system. Here experts examine one of them—the left’s bid to replace private insurers with a government-run single-payer plan labeled “Medicare for All.” Alternatives may include bolstering the Affordable Care Act, or getting rid of it completely.
Dr. Paul Ginsburg, Director, USC-Brookings Schaeffer Initiative for Health Policy
Deborah Burger, RN, President, National Nurses United
Dr. Ken Thorpe, Professor of Health Policy, Emory University
Lauren Crawford Shaver, Executive Director, Partnership for America’s Health Care Future
Knee replacements are successful for 80 percent of recipients, yet many assume the success rate should be higher. Those who are not successful often are bitterly disappointed. However, patients and physicians can take steps to avoid a bad result. New techniques also offer much faster recovery. Experts discuss.
Dr. Dan Riddle, Professor of Physical Therapy, Orthopedic Surgery and Rheumatology, Virginia Commonwealth University
Dr. James Rickert, President, Society for Patient Centered Orthopedics
Dr. Richard Berger, Assistant Professor of Orthopedics, Rush University
Scientists have discovered that the way parents talk to their infants has a huge effect on their intellectual development and later success. Experts discuss why and how parents should hold “conversations” with their babies.
Dr. Anne Fernald, Associate Professor of Psychology, Stanford University
Dr. Kimberly Noble, Associate Professor of Pediatrics, Columbia University
With monitors surveying every part of patients’ bodies, hospital intensive care units appear to be a model of high tech. But systems engineers say ICU’s are actually models of inefficiency because few of those high tech devices talk to each other. Experts discuss how ICU’s could be improved to save lives.
Dr. Peter Pronovost, Senior Vice President for Patient Safety and Quality, Johns Hopkins Medicine and Director, Armstrong Institute for Patient Safety and Quality
Dr. Brian Pickering, intensive care anesthesiologist, Mayo Clinic, Rochester, MN
Approximately 14% of Americans live in a rural area and require access to local hospitals, but many rural hospitals struggle to keep their doors open, citing such financial pressures as the upkeep of equipment and technology.
Dr. Carrie Henning-Smith, a Research Associate at the University of Minnesota, says rural hospitals rely on government funding from programs like Medicare and Medicaid, however neither program cannot fully support the upkeep of buildings and the care of the patients. Although Medicare and Medicaid provide funding, 40% of rural hospitals still operate with a large loss.
Michael Topchik, Director of the Chartis Center for Rural Health, projects that if the current administration cuts Medicaid funding, 15 million recipients will lose health benefits. In addition, Medicaid cuts will drastically affect rural hospitals. Eighty rural hospitals have closed since 2010, and many more could be at risk in the years to come. Closing these rural hospitals would lead to a loss of 35,000 jobs and a $4 billion drag on domestic product. In addition, the residents of rural areas would have to travel long distances to get access to basic health care when they might need it most.
Dr. Carrie Henning-Smith, Research Associate, University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center
Michael Topchik, Director, Chartis Center for Rural Health
Dr. Daniel Derksen, Director, University of Arizona Center for Rural Health
Synopsis: The US once led the world in proportion of women in the workplace, but that number has declined the last 15 years. Experts explain the social, economic, and governmental factors that are leading women to quit their jobs–often unwillingly–and stay home.
Host: Reed Pence. Guests: Dr. Pamela Stone, Visiting Scholar, Stanford University Clayman Institute for Gender Research, Professor of Sociology, Hunter College and the Graduate Center, City University of New York, and author, Opting Out: Why Women Really Quit Careers and Head Home; Dr. Claudia Goldin, Professor of Economics, Harvard University