Category: March 2014

Public Health Service Pharmacy 2014: Embracing Leadership

Public Health Service Pharmacy 2014: Embracing Leadership

By Rear Adm.Scott F. Giberson Acting Deputy Surgeon General U.S. Public Health Service For well over 200 years, the U.S. Public Health Service (PHS) flag has flown side-by-side with our fellow uniformed service members.  As we look forward to opportunities… Read More

Progress and Reform in the Indian Health Service

Progress and Reform in the Indian Health Service

The Indian Health Service mission, in partnership with American Indian and Alaska Native people, is to raise their physical, mental, social, and spiritual health to the highest level.

New VA Bill Fails to Clear Senate; Sanders Says He’ll Keep Pushing It

New VA Bill Fails to Clear Senate; Sanders Says He’ll Keep Pushing It

WASHINGTON — The chairman of the Senate Veterans’ Committee vowed to keep fighting for the passage of a sweeping veterans bill that failed to clear the Senate at the end of February.

VA Pharmacy Reengineering Project Plagued by Ongoing Problems

VA Pharmacy Reengineering Project Plagued by Ongoing Problems

By Annette M. Boyle WASHINGTON — Originally launched in March 2003 and restarted in October 2009, the Pharmacy Reengineering (PRE) software development project continues to miss deadlines, stumble in deployment and suffer from project management failures. That’s according to a… Read More

First Gel Approved for Sealing Corneal Incision in Cataract Surgery

BEDFORD, MA — The first gel sealant has been approved to stop leaking fluid through the corneal incision after cataract surgery with intraocular lens placement. Until the Food and Drug Administration approved the ReSure Sealant Kit,  stitches were the only… Read More

Fast-Track Approval for New Melanoma Combination Treatment

PHILADELPHIA — Accelerated approval has been granted by the Food and Drug Administration to a combination therapy for unresectable or metastatic melanoma with a specific mutation. Approval was announced of a trametinib-dabrafenib combination for use in the treatment of patients… Read More

FDA Reviewing Low-T Therapy After Second Study Shows CV Issues

WASHINGTON — With a second study showing increased risk of cardiovascular events among men using testosterone replacement therapy, the Food and Drug Administration announced that it is reassessing the safety of those products. The agency said it is investigating the… Read More

Internet Tool Uses Patient Feedback to Improve Army Pain Management

Internet Tool Uses Patient Feedback to Improve Army Pain Management

By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON — A new Internet tool is a powerful weapon to combat pain, and the DoD is now launching it in a pilot location. The Pain Assessment Screening Tool and Outcomes Registry (PASTOR) recently was rolled out… Read More

New Defense/Veteran Guidelines Provide Recovery Path for MTBI Patients

New Defense/Veteran Guidelines Provide Recovery Path for MTBI Patients

SILVER SPRING, MD — How and when should a servicemember return to activity after a concussion?

First Gulf War Veterans Not At Increased Risk for MS

WASHINGTON — Are veterans of the 1990-1991 Gulf War at increased risk to develop neurologic disease? That is what a study group, led by researchers from the VA’s multiple sclerosis (MS) Center for Excellence, sought to determine. Their poster presentation,… Read More

Dalfampridine ER Improves Walking in Veterans with MS

PORTLAND, OR — In a recent study, Portland VAMC researchers found that, in short-term trials, dalfampridine extended release (ER) improves walking in veterans with multiple sclerosis (MS). In the study, which was published recently in Multiple Sclerosis Journal, the authors… Read More

Lithium Has Few Adverse Effects in MS; Benefits Inconsistent

BIRMINGHAM, AL — Veterans with multiple sclerosis who were treated with lithium (Li) had few adverse events, but a consistent effect on their disease was not apparent, according to a review led by researchers from the Birmingham, AL, VAMC. The… Read More

Fatal Vehicle Accidents Decline in Military; Motorcycles Remain Dangerous

Fatal Vehicle Accidents Decline in Military; Motorcycles Remain Dangerous

SILVER SPRING, MD — More military servicemembers died in the last four years from war wounds and suicide than motor vehicle accidents (MVA).

Metformin Doesn’t Decrease Bladder Cancer in Diabetes Patients

By Brenda L. Mooney PHILADELPHIA – Use of metformin does not decrease the incidence of bladder cancer in patients with diabetes, according to a study looking at new users of drug therapies. The study, published recently in Diabetes Care, found… Read More

VA Epilepsy Rates Rising with Returning Servicemembers

VA Epilepsy Rates Rising with Returning Servicemembers

High TBI, PTSD Comorbidity in Recent Veterans By Brenda L. Mooney WASHINGTON — U.S. veterans deployed since 2001 suffer high rates of epilepsy and other neurological disorders, and the VA is challenged in both diagnosing and treating them. Recent studies… Read More

Veteran Advocates Warn of Unintended Consequences to Digitizing Disability Claims

Veteran Advocates Warn of Unintended Consequences to Digitizing Disability Claims

By Sandra Basu WASHINGTON — While VA is taking significant steps to digitize the disability claims process, advocacy groups warned lawmakers that the technological advances could have unintended consequences for veterans. “We recognize the importance of technological advances to improve… Read More

In-House Breast-Conserving Surgery Lower in VHA Facilities

TAMPA, FL — Looking just at procedures performed in house, rates of breast-conserving surgery (BCS) are much lower at the VHA than in the private sector, according to a new study led by researchers from the James A. Haley Veterans’… Read More

Minority Partners Might Need More Support in Breast Cancer Decisions

MINNEAPOLIS — Nurses should pay attention to making sure that racial and ethnic minority partners should receive decision support to make sure they are sufficiently involved in decision making about breast cancer treatment, according to a new study led by… Read More

Breast Cancer Rates Stable for Female Servicemembers

SILVER SPRING, MD — Although rates of breast cancer among U.S. female active-duty servicemembers have fluctuated slightly during the past 12 years, they also have remained fairly stable, according to a new study published in Medical Surveillance Monthly Report, a… Read More

Obstructive Sleep Apnea Significantly Increases Risk of Sever Asthma

Obstructive Sleep Apnea Significantly Increases Risk of Sever Asthma

Older Patients Especially Affected By Annette M. Boyle MADISON, WI — For older patients, obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) appears to increase the risk of severe asthma sevenfold, which could be especially significant for veterans because of their high rates of… Read More