Archives for January, 2012

by Kim Krisberg Joy Jay has the sweetest Southern accent you’ll ever hear. It’s the kind of accent that makes her news about the state of mental health services in South Carolina harder to hear than usual. “Mental health has taken some of the biggest (funding) cuts of any agency in the state,” said Jay,…

Slow progress by OSHA to improve worker health and safety regulations

The Labor Department provided an update on January 20, 2012 to its regulatory agenda, including revised target dates for improved workplace safety and health standards. Several of the rules OSHA now expects to publish in 2012 are regulations the agency previously said would be issued one or two years ago. Missed deadlines, however, are nothing…

The healthcare-education connection

During his State of the Union address, President Obama spent more time talking about education than about healthcare, which he mentioned only passing. The two are connected, though, as a response from Dean Dad at Confessions of a Community College Dean reminds us: In reference to yesterday’s post about cost (among other things), a commenter…

White House message: new regulations and election year don’t mix

The Republicans’ mantra about the burden of regulations seems to have cast a spell on the Obama Administration’s attitude about promoting new regulatory initiatives. My observations about this were reinforced this week when I read the Administration’s statement accompanying its Fall 2011 regulatory plan. The message is clear: new regulations and an election year don’t…

by Elizabeth Grossman The morning after President Obama’s State of the Union speech that featured plans for reinvigorating U.S. manufacturing, Marketplace Morning Report asked former Obama Administration economic advisor Jared Bernstein why a company like Apple doesn’t create more jobs in the U.S. “Well,” replied Bernstein, “because the infrastructure for consumer electronics – particularly the…

Scientists urge White House to intervene in stalled worker safety rule

A group of 300 scientists, physicians and public health experts are urging President Obama to direct his Office of Management and Budget (OMB) to complete its review of a proposed Labor Department health standard on the carcinogen crystallline silica. OMB’s Office of Information and Regulatory Affairs (OIRA) has been reviewing the proposed rule for nearly…

Last week, the Congressional Budget Office released some disappointing news: several demonstration projects aiming to contain growth in healthcare spending are not showing cost savings. Specifically, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services have been focusing on programs involving either disease management and care coordination or value-based payment systems for the fee-for-service Medicare population. A…

Report reveals fatal lapses in UCLA lab safety leading to death of 23 year-old lab tech

A previously confidential report prepared by the California Bureau of Investigations (BOI) reveals a reckless disregard for worker safety by a UCLA chemistry professor (and the university itself) which led to the 2009 death of research assistant Sheri Sangji, 23. Sangji was a new employee in a UCLA chemistry lab. She was hired primarily to…

Cost of work-related injury and disease higher than cost for heart disease, cancer

Money talks, as the saying goes, and a recently published paper on the annual cost of work-related injuries and illnesses should get policymakers to listen up. The number is staggering: $250 Billion, and it’s a figure on par with health conditions like cancer, coronary heart disease, and diabetes that attract much more attention and research…

by Kim Krisberg It only takes a few minutes of talking with Scott Becker to realize just how passionate he is about public health. In fact, his enthusiasm is contagious. Maybe that’s why he isn’t mincing his words. “What keeps me up at night is how we are going to maintain the core and critical…