Health

More than 110,000 men, women, and children in the U.S. are awaiting organ transplants to save their lives. Thousands more are in need of tissue and cornea transplants to restore their mobility and sight. April is National Donate Life Month, and one Tennessee couple is celebrating in a big way. 

A Bowling Green doctor says the Kentucky House Speaker should stop pretending he knows what the majority of physicians, nurses, and dentists thinks regarding a prescription drug bill. Dr. Robert Emslie told WKU Public Radio he's concerned about comments made by Speaker Greg Stumbo about doctors' support of a measure that would put the state's prescription pill monitoring program under the control of the Attorney General.

Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville will participate in a nationwide clinical study about the use of deep brain stimulation as an intervention for patients with major depression. The stimulation uses mild pulses of current to regulate specific areas of the brain, much like a pacemaker uses pulses of current to regulate the heart.

The Tennessee House has approved a measure that would make it a felony to sell or manufacture synthetic drugs. The products, which are often called bath salts, imitate controlled substances. The issue has drawn increasing attention in recent months in several states.

Supporters of a bill that would put more restrictions on prescription pills say they believe the measure will pass soon, despite increased lobbying efforts by doctors to weaken the bill. The bill would move the KASPER prescription tracking system to the Attorney General’s office and strengthen restrictions on pain clinics.

Kentucky Governor Steve Beshear is encouraging his peers to join him in fighting prescription pill abuse. Beshear sent that message Tuesday at a prescription pill conference in Florida sponsored by Operation UNITE.

Research being done in Kentucky to treat one of the great health crises of our time is getting a major boost. Monday the University of Louisville announced a new seven year, $3.4 million grant from the National Institutes of Health aimed at finding cures for cardiovascular disease.

Bowling Green will have more options for senior care once an expansion is complete at Christian Care Communities.  Currently, the complex offers a nursing home and independent living apartments.  A $12 million expansion will add units for assisted living, memory care, and short-term rehabilitation. 

Kentucky LRC

Governor Steve Beshear and a bi-partisan group of  lawmakers are urging members of the General Assembly to approve the Prescription Drug Abuse Bill known as HB 4.  The measure is sponsored by House Speaker Greg Stumbo, who says the bill was developed with the cooperation of healthcare professionals and law enforcement.  Only one day remains in the legislative session.

The Associated Press is reporting that a medical clinic and shelter in Pikeville have been closed until early April, while owners attempt to treat the entire facility for a bedbug infestation. Westcare Kentucky Vice President Leslie Balonick says the bugs were found in a room in the men's dormitory and an exterminator advised closing the Pikeville clinic for the next ten days. Exterminators will use that time to clean out the buildings.

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