Archives for October, 2016

Another day, another study on the benefit of vaccines. This time, it’s a study on the economic cost of vaccine-preventable diseases among U.S. adults — a cost that likely surpasses your wildest guesses.

If you look at the numbers, there’s no doubt that the Affordable Care Act is making a positive difference. In fact, just last month, the U.S. Census Bureau reported that the nation’s uninsured rate had hit a record low. At the same time, the health reform law wasn’t intended as a silver bullet and a number of problems remain. One of those problems is known as “churning.”

Safety advocates say, if done right, this has potential to improve process safety management of highly hazardous chemicals nationwide.

Occupational Health News Roundup

Denver Post reporters investigate the lives and deaths of Colorado’s oil and gas workers; employees from Donald Trump’s California golf club say he only wanted to hire “pretty” women; cobalt mining in Congo comes with dangerous risks for adult and child workers; and Harvard’s dining staff goes on strike for living wages.

Just before the end of its September session, Congress finally did what public health officials had been begging it to do for more than seven months and approved substantial funding for Zika response efforts. That delay has entailed serious costs for public health.

Corporal punishment in America’s public schools seems like a relic of the past — a practice we had surely banned long ago. The reality, however, is that it’s perfectly legal to physically discipline students as young as preschoolers in 19 states. And according to a new report, corporal punishment is most often used against black students and students with disabilities.

Does workers’ comp fulfill its obligation to injured workers?

A Labor Department report describes the ways in which our state-based workers’ compensation system is failing injured workers. Will the report become a roadmap for reform or another government report that collects dust?

Chemical Safety Board’s missed opportunity to build public confidence, push reforms

Charleston, WV residents lost confidence in government officials when they received conflicting information about the January 2014 contamination of their tap water. The Chemical Safety Board missed an opportunity last week to restore some of that trust.

By now, the enormity of America’s opioid abuse and overdose epidemic is common knowledge. With 78 Americans dying every day from an opioid overdose and with enough painkillers prescribed to give just about every U.S. adult their own bottle of pills, there’s hardly a community that’s gone untouched by the deadly problem. And a new study reminds us that we’ll be dealing with the aftermath far into the future.