Advocacy E-News

November 14, 2017

 

MURPHY NAMES TRANSITION TEAM, SIGNALS HIS PRIORITIES

Less than a week after his election, Gov.-elect Phil Murphy yesterday started naming names to his various transition committees that show where his policies lie. Murphy has been somewhat close to the vest as to specifically whose advice he is relying on in making those eventual appointments, and the transition panels are one indicator.

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FIRST DIGITAL PILL APPROVED TO WORRIES ABOUT BIOMEDICAL ‘BIG BROTHER’

For the first time, the Food and Drug Administration has approved a digital pill — a medication embedded with a sensor that can tell doctors whether, and when, patients take their medicine. Patients who agree to take the digital medication, a version of the antipsychotic Abilify, can sign consent forms allowing their doctors and up to four other people, including family members, to receive electronic data showing the date and time pills are ingested.

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STUDENTS FACE MENTAL HEALTH CRISIS…MOSTLY ALONE

The New Jersey Youth Suicide Report 2016 shows that in the two year period prior to the report, 145 male and 48 females age of 19-24 committed suicide in our state. The epidemic has been hitting New Jersey particularly hard. In August 2015, Governor Chris Christie signed the Madison Holleran Suicide Prevention Act, which was inspired by a New Jersey high school track star and Ivy League college student who took her own life. The Prevention Act requires colleges and universities to have licensed health care professionals who specialize in reducing student suicides available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The Act requires schools to post information on student suicides and attempted suicides on their websites annually.

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NETWORKS ARE NARROWER FOR MENTAL HEALTH CARE THAN FOR PRIMARY CARE

There is increasing concern about the extent to which narrow-network plans, those including fewer than 25 percent of providers in a given health insurance market, affect access to mental health care. A recent study published in Health Affairs suggests that only 11.3 percent of all mental health care providers practicing in a given state-level market. These findings raise important questions about barriers to meeting the goal of mental health parity.

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