Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in HIV & AIDS for December 2019. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.
Nurses Can Help Manage Drug Interactions in HIV/Hep C Treatment
TUESDAY, Dec. 31, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Drug interactions between antiretroviral therapy (ART) and direct-acting antivirals (DAAs) pose a clinical challenge in patients with HIV/hepatitis C virus (HCV) coinfection, according to an article published online Dec. 17 in the Journal of the Association of Nurses in AIDS Care.
Machine Learning System Makes More Alerts for Med Errors
TUESDAY, Dec. 31, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A machine learning system can generate clinically valid alerts for medication errors that might be missed with existing clinical decision support (CDS) systems, according to a study published in the January issue of The Joint Commission Journal on Quality and Patient Safety.
China Convicts Scientists Claiming First Genetically Edited Babies
MONDAY, Dec. 30, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The Chinese scientist who claimed he had created the first genetically edited babies in the world was sentenced to three years in prison for his research, the Chinese government said Monday.
Many Hospitals Fail to Provide Instructions for Patient Portals
THURSDAY, Dec. 26, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Many hospital patient portals fail to educate patients fully and set expectations for secure messaging, according to a study recently published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.
Patient Share of Out-of-Network Costs Rising
TUESDAY, Dec. 24, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The out-of-pocket costs for out-of-network (OON) care grew rapidly for privately insured Americans from 2012 to 2017, according to a study published in the December issue of the American Journal of Managed Care.
Enrollment in Affordable Care Act Holds Steady for Third Straight Year
MONDAY, Dec. 23, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Enrollment in Affordable Care Act coverage for next year has surpassed 8 million, a sign that many Americans still turn to the government health insurance program to help pay for their medical care.
Private Care Program for U.S. Vets Gets $8.9 Billion in Budget Deal
THURSDAY, Dec. 19, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A controversial program meant to get more U.S. veterans to use private health care received $8.9 billion as part of a government spending bill approved by the House.
Antiretroviral Prescribing in Pregnancy Strays From National Guidelines
THURSDAY, Dec. 19, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- For pregnant women with HIV, antiretroviral medication (ARV) prescribing practices do not align well with national guidelines, according to a study published online Dec. 18 in JAMA Network Open.
FDA to Allow States to Import Prescription Drugs From Other Countries
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 18, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Federal health officials have unveiled plans to allow prescription drug imports from Canada and other foreign nations.
USPSTF Recommends Behavioral Counseling for STI Prevention
TUESDAY, Dec. 17, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommends behavioral counseling for sexually active adolescents and for adults with increased sexually transmitted infection (STI) risk. These recommendations form the basis of a draft recommendation statement published online Dec. 17 by the USPSTF.
Outcomes Worse for Rural Residents With Chronic Conditions
MONDAY, Dec. 16, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Rural Medicare beneficiaries with complex chronic conditions have higher preventable hospitalization and mortality rates than their urban peers, which is partially explained by reduced access to specialists, according to a report published in the December issue of Health Affairs, a theme issue on rural health.
Hahn Confirmed as New FDA Chief
FRIDAY, Dec. 13, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Stephen Hahn, M.D., was confirmed as commissioner of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration in a 72-18 Senate vote on Thursday.
Cost Saving-Related Rx Nonadherence Found for 7 Percent With HIV
THURSDAY, Dec. 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Seven percent of persons with HIV infection report cost saving-related nonadherence to prescription medication, according to research published in the Dec. 13 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Facebook Asked to Remove 'Factually Inaccurate' Ads About PrEP
THURSDAY, Dec. 12, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Facebook should remove "factually inaccurate" ads that "suggest negative health effects" of the HIV-prevention medication Truvada, more than 50 LGBTQ, HIV, and public health groups say in an open letter to the company.
U.S. Primary Care Doctors Face Challenges in Coordinating Care
TUESDAY, Dec. 10, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians from the United States and other high-income countries report difficulties with care coordination, with a substantial proportion of U.S. physicians not receiving timely notification or the information needed from specialists or other sites of care, according to a study published online Dec. 10 in Health Affairs.
U.S. Health Care Spending Up 4.6 Percent in 2018
TUESDAY, Dec. 10, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- In 2018, U.S. health care spending increased 4.6 percent, a faster rate than that seen in 2017, according to a report published online Dec. 5 in Health Affairs.
2016 to 2019 Saw Increase in Medical Students With Disabilities
MONDAY, Dec. 9, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- From 2016 to 2019, there was an increase in the proportion of medical students reporting disabilities, according to a research letter published in the Nov. 26 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Retail Prescription Drug Prices Fall for First Time in 45 Years
FRIDAY, Dec. 6, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Retail prescription drug prices in the United States fell by 1 percent last year, a new government report shows.
Rural Population Underrepresented Among Medical Students
FRIDAY, Dec. 6, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- In 2017, less than 5 percent of all incoming medical students were rural students, according to a study published in the December issue of Health Affairs, a theme issue on rural health.
New HIV Infections Remained Stable in U.S. From 2013 to 2017
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- From 2013 to 2017, the number of new HIV infections remained stable, and only 18.1 percent of the 1.2 million people with indications for preexposure prophylaxis (PrEP) had been prescribed the medication in 2018, according to research published in the Dec. 3 early-release issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
Services Affected by Rural Hospitals Joining Health Systems
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- While affiliating with health systems may boost a rural hospital's financial viability, the affiliation is often associated with reductions in critical services, according to a study published in the December issue of Health Affairs, a theme issue on rural health.
Adults Not Living in Metro Areas Have Reduced Access to Care
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Adults not living in metropolitan statistical areas (MSAs) are more likely to have reduced access to or use of health care services, according to a study published online Dec. 4 in the National Health Statistics Reports, a publication from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Physician Depressive Symptoms Tied to Higher Risk for Medical Errors
WEDNESDAY, Dec. 4, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians showing depressive symptoms are at higher risk for medical errors, according to a review published Nov. 27 in JAMA Network Open.
New Federal Program Provides Free HIV Prevention Drugs to Uninsured
TUESDAY, Dec. 3, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- A new program to provide free HIV prevention drugs to people who cannot afford them because they do not have health insurance was announced Tuesday by the U.S. government.
End-Stage Renal Disease Patients at Higher Risk for Syphilis
MONDAY, Dec. 2, 2019 (HealthDay News) -- End-stage renal disease (ESRD) patients are at a higher risk for contracting syphilis, according to a study recently published in the Clinical Kidney Journal.