Stakeholders Launch Group To Promote Digital Health Equity

A diverse group of stakeholders including drug makers, patient and physician advocacy groups, and historically black colleges and universities is launching a new coalition to promote equity in telemedicine. The Digital Health for Equitable Health Alliance (DHEH) will “champion policies and programs meant to increase equitable access to quality healthcare by building upon innovations in digital health, telemedicine, wearables, artificial intelligence, machine learning, and more to advance public health and well-being,” according to a press release . Organizations joining the...
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Abortion Providers Irate Over Oklahoma ‘Bounty-Hunter’ Abortion Ban

The Oklahoma state legislature passed a bill to ban abortion beginning at fertilization and set up a so-called bounty-hunter provision to invoke civil suits against abortion providers or anyone who “aids or abets” an abortion. The bill, if signed by Republican Gov. Kevin Stitt, would take effect immediately and become the most-restrictive anti-abortion measure in the country. The bill, H.B.4327, adds to a slew of other restrictions in place in Oklahoma. An April 2022 law, S.B.612, made providing or attempting...
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CMS Issue: 
Inside CMS - 05/26/2022
CMS Volume: 
Vol. 25, No. 21
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Califf Shifts Veteran Drug-Specialist Woodcock To Shepherd Food Policy

FDA chief Robert Califf on Wednesday (May 18) announced that FDA Principal Deputy Commissioner Janet Woodcock will help shepherd key initiatives within the agency’s food center, coming as the agency races to resolve infant formula safety concerns and supply shortages caused by a recall of formula made by Abbott Nutrition. Woodcock, who spent nearly three decades as director of FDA’s drug center before taking on the role of acting FDA chief from 2021 to 2022, will help provide consistent leadership...
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FDA Issue: 
FDA Week - 05/27/2022
FDA Volume: 
Vol. 28, No. 21
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Appropriators Call For Leadership Changes At FDA’s Food Center

FDA needs to make significant structural and leadership changes at its food center, House appropriators on both sides of the aisle asserted during an FDA-agriculture appropriations subcommittee hearing Thursday (May 19). They questioned whether the agency should receive more funding to stand up new food programs or whether funding should focus on helping the agency fulfill its core duties, coming as the agency grapples with infant formula safety and shortage issues. FDA chief Robert Califf agreed that money won’t solve...
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FDA Issue: 
FDA Week - 05/27/2022
FDA Volume: 
Vol. 28, No. 21
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CDC Vaccine Panel Recommends Pfizer Booster Shot For Kids 5-11

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s vaccine advisory committee on Thursday (May 19) said children ages 5 to 11 “should” receive a booster dose of Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine, building on FDA’s recent authorization of booster shots for the younger age group. The advisers voted 11-1, with one member abstaining, to recommend that children “should” receive the booster instead of simply saying that they “may,” in order to streamline communications and build confidence in the vaccine. Helen Talbot, an associate...
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FDA Issue: 
FDA Week - 05/27/2022
FDA Volume: 
Vol. 28, No. 21
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Hospitals On Guard As CISA Orders Agencies To Patch VMware Software

The health care industry is on guard in the wake of a new emergency directive from the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency that identifies vulnerabilities in specific VMware products and orders federal agencies to immediately implement mitigations. While the alert was sent to government entities, the hospital lobby warned its members Thursday (May 19) to also act quickly because VMware is also a popular cloud-based software used by private health care entities. John Riggi, American Hospital Association’s national advisor for...
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