Bipolar News

June 15, 2005

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Geodon Improves Depressive Symptoms in Patients With Bipolar ... (press release) - USA
... with Pfizer Inc's atypical antipsychotic Geodon® (ziprasidone HCl) showed the medication improved depressive symptoms in patients with bipolar disorder who ...

Bipolar 'Medea' leaves play adrift
Washington Times - Washington,DC,USA
... may not be enough. The central crisis in the staging is Delia Taylor's bipolar approach to the character of Medea. When we first ...

Special Education Series Failed to Address Some Critical Issues
Black Enterprise - New York,NY,USA
... It is estimated by the Juvenile Bipolar Research Foundation that 80 percent of all bipolar children also meet the full criteria for being diagnosed with ADHD ...

Suspect in fatal beating dies in jail
Leesburg Daily Commercial - Leesburg,FL,USA
... She also said her son had bipolar disorder and that she informed the jail and lawyers about it. "He had never been that way except ...

McCourt's Family Questions Use Of Deadly Force
Iowa - Des Moines,IA,USA
... He said there's no evidence that McCourt was suicidal and that he struggled with bipolar disorder. Funeral services for McCourt are scheduled for Monday.

Antipsychotic drug may control bipolar mania
Reuters - USA
... Health) - A drug used to treat schizophrenia, amisulpride, appears to be a safe and effective treatment for mania that occurs in bipolar disorder, according to ...

Mental health group stays in the Capital as Executive admits error
Read more here.

New York State Recommends Use of TeenScreen Mental Health Check-Ups to Prevent Teen Suicide (press release)
Read more here.


State Tax Collection on the Increase, but Medicaid Programs Still Face Funding Shortfalls

If state tax-revenue collection continues at its current pace, states are on track to collect a record $550 billion in the fiscal year that ends June 30, according to a soon-to-be-released report from the Nelson A. Rockefeller Institute of Government. "We are now seeing year-over-year revenue growth" at levels last seen before the recession, said a senior policy analyst with the institute. Despite increased revenues, state healthcare programs still face finance challenges; Medicaid and other healthcare spending exceeded appropriations in 23 states by the end of February compared with 16 in November, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. (The Wall Street Journal, 6/14/05)

Tennessee Governor Calls for New Program to Replace Medicaid

The nation should scrap the Medicaid program and create a new program to provide health insurance coverage to people who have low incomes, Tennessee Gov. Phil Bredesen said in a weekly radio address. Such a new program would require copayments for services, would focus on only those medications and procedures that are most needed, and would ban drugs that only have marginal effects, said Bredesen. He said that unchecked Medicaid growth in his state has cut into funding for schools and other programs. (Dow Jones Newswires, 6/11/05)

Senators Seek Information on Drug Companies’ Educational Grants to States

Sens. Charles Grassley, R-Iowa, and Max Baucus, D-Mont., sent letters to several pharmaceutical companies last week seeking information about whether the companies use educational grants they award to state programs as a “back-door” way to market their products. The senators are concerned that through such grants, the companies are influencing prescribing and purchasing decisions made by providers and state programs, including Medicaid. The information that the senators seek includes the companies’ policies in providing the grants and the number of grants that the companies provided to state agencies and other organizations since 2000. (Dow Jones Newswires, 6/10/05)

Change in Tax Law Reduces Used Car Donations to Charities

Used-car donations to nonprofit charitable organizations have fallen sharply this year largely due to a change in federal law that affects how much money individuals who donate cars can deduct from their federal income taxes, according to officials at some charities. Before this year, people who itemized their deductions on their federal returns could deduct the fair-market value of the cars they donated. Now, people can only deduct the price for which charities can sell the donated cars, except under a few exceptions. (The Wall Street Journal, 6/12/05)

Research News

African Americans Make Up Nearly Half of All People Infected by HIV: African Americans constitute nearly one-half of the estimated 1 million people in the United States who are HIV-positive, even though they make up only 13 percent of the total U.S population, a new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention study indica= tes. More than two-thirds of the African American men who participated in the study didn’t know that they were HIV-positive before their participation, according to researchers, a rate three times greater than the number of whites who participated in the study. "The HIV epidemic, initially most prominent among white gay men, has expanded to affect a wide range of populations, with African-Americans now most severely impacted," said a CDC official. (Reuters Health, 6/13/05)

Weight Perception May Be a Risk Factor for Suicide Ideation: Teens who perceive themselves as being very fat or very thin, regardless of their actual weight, are more than twice as likely to consider suicide than other teens, a study in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine indicates. Even teens whose weight perception only deviated slightly from normal weights were at a slightly higher risk for suicide ideation, researchers found. About 19 percent of all teens who participated in the study reported that they had thought about suicide, and 9 percent said that they had attempted suicide. (Intellihealth/The Associated Press, 6/6/05)

Immigrants Make Up a Growing Number of People Who Lack Insurance Coverage: A new study indicates that of the 44 million people in the United States who lacked health insurance coverage in 2003, nearly 12 million people were immigrants – a 70 percent increase since 1994. The author of the study, which was conducted by the Employee Benefits Research Institute, said that one reason for this increase may be due to the 1996 welfare-reform law, which requires a five-year residency before immigrants can apply to government programs such as Medicaid. (The Wall Street Journal, 6/14/05)

Ethnic Groups Affected by Depression, Dysthemia at Different Rates: Although white Americans are more likely than African Americans or Mexican Americans to have an episode of major depression at some point during their lives, African Americans and Mexican American are more likely to experience dysthemia, a study in the American Journal of Public Health indicates. The prevalence of major depression among whites, African Americans and Mexican Americans is 10.4 percent, 7.5 percent and 8 percent, respectively. Corresponding dysthemia prevalence figures are 5.7 percent, 7.5 percent and 7.4 percent. Cultural factors, education and income all may play a role in the differences, the researchers note. (Reuters Health, 6/13/05)

Pharmaceutical News

Lilly Reaches an Agreement in Principle to Settle Zyprexa Lawsuits: Eli Lilly and Company announced last week that the company has reached an agreement in principle to settle about 8,000 lawsuits filed against it by people who claimed that the company hadn’t provided enough warning that its antipsychotic drug, Zyprexa, may cause diabetes. Many of the lawsuits were first filed before the FDA ordered Lilly and other companies that produce similar drugs to provide a warning on their products’ labels that the drugs may lead to diabetes. "While we believe the claims are without merit, we took this difficult step because we believe it is in the best interest of the company, the patients who depend on this medication, and their doctors," Eli Lilly President and CEO Sidney Taurel said. (The Wall Street Journal, 6/10/05)

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