November 2011

Powerful New Scanner Improves Diagnosis, Treatment of TBI, PTSD

WASHINGTON — A cutting-edge scanner that combines a whole-body, simultaneous positron emission topography (PET) and magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) could be invaluable in helping them better understand what changes are occurring in the brains of those suffering from TBI and… Read More

Military Battles Flu Every Year to Ensure Troop Readiness

WASHINGTON — Every year, the military has to do battle with an especially cunning and adaptable foe: seasonal influenza. During the 2010-2011 flu season, more than 600 cases of the flu were reported among troops on active duty (80.1% had… Read More

Concussions in Pro Football Players Provide Clues to Military TBI Treatment

Head Injury Leading Killer Among All-Americans WASHINGTON — Concerns about the long-term effects of repeated head trauma go far beyond military personnel injured in battlefield blasts. More than 50,000 Americans, most of them civilians, die each year from TBI, according… Read More

VA Tests Innovative Solutions to Veteran Unemployment

WASHINGTON — Unemployment among veterans is higher than the civilian sector, as servicemembers returning from Iraq and Afghanistan have a difficult time finding a place in the work force. This has legislators attempting to understand the root causes of the… Read More

Faced With Lawsuit, TRICARE Reviews Policies After 4.9 Million Patient Data Breach

WASHINGTON — TRICARE is reviewing its current data protection security policies and procedures in response to a data breach that involved personal information on an estimated 4.9 million military clinic and hospital patients. A $4.9 billion class-action lawsuit that was… Read More

First Malaria Vaccine Could Be Available in Four Years

WASHINGTON — The world’s first malaria vaccine may finally be within reach. Scientists and public health officials are optimistic about recent news that a malaria vaccine candidate was able to reduce the risk of malaria by half in young African… Read More

Troops Suffering Increased Devastating Injuries from Blasts

WASHINGTON, DC — Of all of the injuries servicemembers suffer on the battlefield, among the most feared, psychologically as well as physically, are genitourinary. In fact, a recent report offered anecdotal information that some servicemembers have “do not resuscitate” pacts… Read More

FDA Is More Bark than Bite on Foreign Drug Imports, Seeks More Authority

WASHINGTON — FDA needs the authority to keep foreign manufacturers who do not comply with regulatory requests from importing their products into the United States, agency officials are telling legislators. Currently, the agency can stop products from entering the country… Read More

Gulf War Veterans Continue to Demonstrate Blood Brain Flow Abnormalities

WASHINGTON — Gulf War veterans continue to demonstrate blood brain flow abnormalities even 20 years after the war and, in some cases, have gotten worse, according to researchers at the University of Texas. This comes when funding for Gulf War… Read More

Recent Court Case Underscores Strict Outside Payment Rules for Federal Physicians

WASHINGTON — Government employees are under strict rules about accepting outside gifts and outside payments. A reminder of that came last month with news that an Army doctor was ordered by a U.S. District Court last month to pay nearly… Read More

Drug Shortages Tripled in Last Five Years; Critical Medications Unavailable

WASHINGTON — The number of drug shortages reported annually has nearly tripled over the last five years, with much-needed drugs such as chemotherapy, anesthetics and electrolytes disproportionately affected. FDA sometimes can mitigate or even prevent a shortage, but this… Read More

Poor Coordination Between VA, DoD Continues to Hamper Wounded Warrior Program

WASHINGTON — Poor synchronization between DoD and VA may be leading to a worsening of patient-care coordination. If the two departments do not start working together quickly to solve the issue, it could adversely affect the health of the veterans… Read More

Army Readiness Eroded By Increasing Numbers of Medically Unfit Soldiers

WASHINGTON — As troops are being drawn down, even while the demand on the force continues, a growing percentage of Army troops are medically unfit for duty, Army officials said at the recent Association of the U.S. Army 2011 Annual… Read More