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Think Out Loud

Gauging The State Of Healthcare At OHSU

March 11, 2013 7:30 p.m.

Portland's largest private employer, Oregon Health & Science University, recently announced a hiring freeze. Chief financial officer, Lawrence Furnstahl says while there will be some select hiring for critical staff, the freeze is necessary to contain costs. Since most federal research money comes from discretionary spending, sequestration is hitting OHSU and other research institutions hard, Furnstahl says. OHSU relies on the federal government for about 40 percent of its two billion dollar budget. Furnstahl told the Portland Business Journal that the uncertainty of federal funds and the rising cost of public employee retirement benefits are prompting OHSU to do some serious belt-tightening.

Think Out Loud

Getting Mental Healthcare To Transition Age Youth

Jan. 9, 2013 8:06 p.m.

After the mall shooting deaths of two people at Clackamas Town Center and the incomprehensible loss of 20 young children and seven adults at Sandy Hook Elementary, we're looking into some of the potential ways to prevent such tragedies. We've discussed security in schools, mental health resources for parents and kids, and most recently, gun laws. On this show, we'll find out what kind of mental health care is available to youth ages 16-25, also called "Transition Age Youth." That's generally the age range of those who commit these kinds of unspeakable acts of violence. And it's the age group that several years ago, the state found was 80 percent less likely (pdf) to get the mental health care they need compared with other age groups. 

Think Out Loud

Obama's Healthcare Compromise

Feb. 10, 2012 5:50 p.m.

The Obama administration has announced a new compromise for contraceptive coverage for women working for religiously affiliated employers. Under the new plan employers like charities or hospitals with religious affiliations will not be required to pay for contraceptive coverage.

Think Out Loud

President Obama Speaks on Russia, Healthcare and the Economy

Aug. 9, 2013 8:06 p.m.

President Obama will hold a press conference today at noon. Topics will include Russian relations, Edward Snowden and the state of the economy. We'll have reactions to the speech with our News Roundtable immediately following the press conference.

Think Out Loud

Providing Healthcare For Transgender Oregonians

Jan. 6, 2015 8:06 p.m.

This January, Oregon joined a small group of states where transgender people can get health care coverage for gender dysphoria.

Think Out Loud

Healthcare News Update

June 10, 2014 7:45 p.m.

We check in with The Lund Report's executive editor about Cover Oregon, hospital mergers, health insurance rates, and more.

Think Out Loud

Using Universal Screening And Assessment In Schools

Feb. 19, 2013 8:06 p.m.

After the shootings at Clackamas Town Center and the Sandy Hook massacre of 20 elementary school children, we've been exploring various responses and approaches to preventing such violence in the future. The idea of early assessment and intervention was an aspect of prevention that came up briefly in our show about getting mental health care to transition age youth (16 -24). The basic idea is that along with reading tests grade school kids get, there would also be a formal behavior evaluation. But what would that look like? Who would do it? How early would it start? What are the benefits? We'll ask those questions and more of Jeffrey Sprague, from the University of Oregon, one of the principal researchers in the area. And we'll check in with one of the early adopters of this idea in Corvallis to see how it's working there. 

Think Out Loud

Remembering Booth Gardner

March 19, 2013 7:06 p.m.

Booth Gardner served as the governor of Washington State from 1985 to 1993. He passed away over the weekend from complications of Parkinson's disease. Having only served as state senator and Pierce County executive before running for governor, he was known for a campaign slogan that winkingly acknowledged his relative statewide anonymity: "Booth Who?" But he overcame his lack of name recognition to become a two-term governor that brought changes to education, healthcare, and land use. After leaving office, he lived a quiet life, until reemerging into political view to advocate for Washington's Death with Dignity Act.

Think Out Loud

Candidate Conversation: Portland City Commissioner

April 16, 2012 4:06 p.m.

We'll talk with the two leading candidates for Portland City Commissioner Position No. 1: incumbent Amanda Fritz and challenger Mary Nolan. Fritz has held the job since 2008. Nolan has spent the last 12 years in the state legislature. They've both made efforts to highlight their leadership in local government during the campaign. Nolan focused on education and healthcare as a state representative from SW Portland. She was also majority leader for the House Democrats. Before being elected to the legislature, she served as head of the Portland Bureau of Environmental Services and co-founded a GPS technology business. She's been criticized for her blunt communication style. Nolan is originally from Chicago. She moved to Portland in 1976. Fritz heads up the Office of Neighborhood Involvement, the relatively new Office of Equity and Human Rights, among other bureaus. She also championed a cheaper way to comply with the EPA regulation requiring Portland to treat its water, a move that's in line with her image as a fiscal watchdog. Fritz has faced some criticism over the Office of Equity, which has a $1 million budget and not much to show for it yet. She has a background as a nurse and a neighborhood activist. She's originally from Yorkshire, England and she moved to Portland from New York in 1986. Fritz successfully used the city's public financing system when she was first elected. This time around, even though that system is no longer in place, she's imposing a $50 limit on individual campaign donations and she's not accepting donations from PACs or corporations. Nolan, who began fundraising last summer and has not set donation limits, has raised far more than Fritz at this point.

Think Out Loud

Circumcision Decisions

Aug. 30, 2012 7:30 p.m.

The American Academy of Pediatrics released a new policy statement Monday that has reignited the debate over whether or not boys should be circumcised. The AAP stopped short of a blanket recommendation on whether or not to remove the foreskin from the tip of the penis, saying the decision should be left to parents. The academy did say the health benefits of circumcision outweigh the risks. According to the Agency of Healthcare Research and Quality, 55-56 percent (PDF) of newborn American males were circumcised in 2009 (the most recent year for which numbers were available). That rate is even lower in the western United States and the practice has been on the decline nationwide. Some adament detractors protested outside of an AAP chapter office after the academy announced released their statement. In Oregon, arguments over circumcision flared up a few years ago when a custody case evolved into a legal battle over whether or not a 12-year-old boy should be circumcised.

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News | Health | Nation | local | Vital Signs

Study: Affordable Care Act Has Provided 71M With Healthcare

March 18, 2013 8:58 p.m.

It's been three years since President Obama signed the Affordable Care Act.

Health | local | Vital Signs

Consumers Might Get Healthcare Refunds Under the Affordable Care Act

June 20, 2012 6 a.m.

One of the goals of the Affordable Care Act is to cut the cost of health insurance administration. And to do that, the law sets limits on how much companies can spend things like bonuses, salaries and marketing. Failure to meet those limits could result in a refund for consumers. 

News | Health | local | Vital Signs

Oregon Counting On Numbers To Help Track Healthcare Reform

March 21, 2013 1:27 p.m.

A year from now, how will the state know if health care reforms are working? By tracking a host of measures, and watching to see if they improve.


Healthcare Act Ends 'Lifetime Limits' For 1.3 Million Oregonians

March 5, 2012 4:31 p.m.

The nation's new health reform law has ended "lifetime limits" for more than 1.3 million Oregonians, according to a new federal report.

Health | local

Health Authority Tries To Sort Out The Benefits Of New Healthcare Laws

Sept. 13, 2010 6 a.m.

The Oregon Health Authority is holding a meeting in Portland  Monday  to gather public input on how to put new federal healthcare laws into effect.


Oregon Healthcare 'Lottery' Draws Names

May 21, 2010 2:49 p.m.

Oregon's so-called healthcare "lottery" is drawing names Friday.

Health | local

Tuesday Is Last Day To Comment On Oregon's New Healthcare Plan

Sept. 30, 2008 12:58 p.m.

The consumer group, OSPIRG, says Oregon’s proposed new healthcare plan could cut medical costs by more than $5 billion over 10 years.

Health | Economy

Healthcare Woes Show Up In Oregon Emergency Rooms

Dec. 10, 2008 8:59 a.m.

In a state where one in five adults has no healthcare, it’s reassuring to know that if you’re ill, you cannot be turned away from a hospital emergency room.  But there’s a problem.

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