The Gerontological Society of America released a new resource outlining the COVID-19 pandemic-driven disruption in oral health for older adults. The report highlights opportunities to improve oral health for people in long-term care settings and discusses the greater reliance on mobile dentistry in the future.
To support state and local outreach efforts, HHS researched federal survey data to predict vaccine hesitancy rates down to the county level. There are two Excel spreadsheets: one presents state and county estimates of the proportion of adults who describe themselves as “probably not” (Hesitant) or “definitely not” (Strongly Hesitant) going to get a COVID-19 vaccine once one is available to them, and the other presents select sociodemographic and geographic factors by county that can be examined together with the estimates of vaccine hesitancy. See the map here.
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently released revised fact sheets for health care providers that include additional information on susceptibility of SARS-CoV-2 variants to each monoclonal antibody therapy available through an Emergency Use Authorization for COVID-19 treatment. The fact sheets contain details regarding specific variants and potential resistance. Download revised fact sheets for: Bamlanivimab; Bamlanivimab and Etesevimab and REGEN-COV™ (Casirivimab with Imdevimab).
A new study published this week found that a third of patients diagnosed with the coronavirus experienced a psychiatric or neurological illness as of six months later. Earlier studies found that COVID-19 can cause long-term brain damage and may increase the risk of Alzheimer’s. As Pennsylvania and the nation approaches April 19 when vaccination will be open to all adults, analysis by Johns Hopkins University of the latest available seven days of data finds that nearly half of new coronavirus infections nationwide are in just five states — New York, Michigan, Florida, Pennsylvania, and New Jersey. The five states together reported 44 percent of the nation’s new COVID-19 infections, or nearly 197,500 new cases. We can change this with vaccination: as of this week, 169 million doses have been given worldwide and 6.8 million in Pennsylvania; 63 million people worldwide and 2.4 million in PA are fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
Health Affairs released a report on April 6, 2021, which found that 21.9 percent of new mothers with Medicaid-covered prenatal care became uninsured two to six months postpartum. The report, which analyzed Medicaid-covered prenatal care from 2015 to 2018 in 43 states also found that 26.8 percent of new mothers with prenatal Medicaid coverage were uninsured before pregnancy. Data is from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System.
By Joe Belden
Economic Innovation Group think tank offers tools that introduce “geographic inequality” into the national conversation and bring rural America’s economic distress to the forefront.
New research from the HRSA-funded University of Minnesota Rural Health Research Center shows that among rural hospitals, those hospitals that have stopped providing obstetric care are smaller and more likely to be located in remote rural areas or in majority Black rural counties. This research is critically important for informing programs aimed at addressing disparities in access to maternal health care, like the recently announced RMOMS Program.
The Economic Research Service (ERS) at the U.S. Department of Agriculture details their research into contributing factors for geographic differences, with a focus on the widespread introduction of prescription drugs in rural and urban areas.
The Government Accountability Office (GAO) researches Federal government operations and reports fact-based, non-partisan information. Over the last year, the GAO made 44 specific recommendations for an effective federal response to COVID-19 and provides and update on progress in this report. Information specific to rural areas, such as distributions from the Provider Relief Fund and special funding for telehealth, is detailed throughout.
A new report by Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) responds to the question of whether health centers are facilitating equitable access to COVID-19 vaccinations based on data from the HRSA Weekly Health Center COVID-19 Survey. The report finds that:
- Just over half (54%) of people who received their first dose of the vaccine from FQHCs were people of color, including 26% who were Hispanic and 12% who were Black.
- Health centers appear to be vaccinating people of color at similar or higher rates than their shares of the total population, but data suggest there remain opportunities for health centers to reach more of their patients of color.
It’s important to note that the report analyzes data from Jan. 8 through Feb. 6, largely before the start of the HRSA FQHC Vaccine Program that has made vaccine supply more available and predictable for participating health centers. The program has opened opportunities for better planning, outreach and partnership to better reach underserved populations. Read more.