health

healthcare.gov

The deadline quickly approaches for Oregonians who want coverage through the Oregon Health Insurance Marketplace. There is one week left to enroll.

Reference.com

HIV-aids kills more than 13,000 Americans every year. The Center for Disease Control estimates if every person knew their HIV status, there would be a 96 percent drop in the spread of the virus.

Chris Bradshaw/FeaturePics.com.

Despite Oregon's decision to abandon its own health exchange system in favor of the federal portal, the State's Medicaid program is doing well.

A new report from the Oregon Health Authority says costs for inpatient hospital services decreased by about 5.5% since 2011. And there are 380,000 Medicaid enrollees in the new system. CareOregon's Director of Public Policy, Martin Taylor, says developing the State's Coordinated Care Organizations, or CCO's, helped ease the changeover to the federal exchange.

Kombucha Sales Taking Off In Oregon

Aug 26, 2014
Amanda Butt

Kombucha businesses have been popping up around Oregon and flourishing in Portland, Bend and Eugene. This ancient fermented drink is earning new fans as it gains popularity in a state well-known for its breweries. The sales numbers show that more people are drinking kombucha, but there are many people who still don’t know what the drink is.

Jes Burns

It’s been years in coming.   Officials broke ground on a new Veterans health facility in Eugene Monday afternoon.  

The site of the future Veterans Health Care Center in North Eugene sits within eye shot of I-5.  That’s the same interstate veterans in Lane County now travel long distances on to get health services not provided at the current small clinic in Eugene.    Oregon Representative Peter DeFazio spoke at the groundbreaking ceremony.

Jes Burns

The national deadline to sign up for health insurance under the Affordable Care Act has already passed.  But in Oregon, persistent tech problems prompted the Governor to extend the final sign-up date by a month to April 30th.  The Cover Oregon website is still not fully functional, although people can complete most of the application process on-line.

New rankings say the healthiest people in Oregon live in Benton County. The annual report is from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. It measures factors such as education, income, tobacco use and quality of life.

Charlie Fautin is the Deputy Director of the Benton County Health Department. He says it's great to rank first in the state, but there are plenty of people in Benton County who are not doing as well as they could.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Oregon Health officials say it's not too late to get a flu shot. They hope you will because there's been an uptick in cases in the past week. A number of people in Lane County have tested positive for swine flu, or H1N1.

Oregon Health Authorigy

In Oregon, low-income adults used to have to get on a waiting list and enroll in a lottery-style drawing to get health insurance. But that's changed because of the federal Affordable Care Act.

Oregon is one of 26 states expanding its Medicaid program, called the Oregon Health Plan. This means up to 300-thousand more people are eligible for coverage. Erin Fair Taylor is with Care-Oregon.

Ken Charpie
Karen Richards

Community before profit. That's the message caregivers from McKenzie-Willamette hospital's union want their management to adopt.

Since the hospital went for-profit in 2003, members of SEIU Local 89 say the Mckenzie-Willamette Medical Center makes more money than almost every hospital in Oregon. It also has one of the worst records for charity care. They'd like to re-balance that trend. Tuesday, union members read a message to the hospital's leadership:

(GROUP) "This holiday season, caregivers are being let go while those left are faced with having to do more with less."

World AIDS Day

HIV / AIDS was once a high-profile communicable disease. Due in part to effective medications, it has fallen in the public's awareness. Sunday's "World AIDS Day" hopes to renew focus on HIV.

World AIDS Day was established in 1988, at the height of the epidemic. Now, the deadly condition can be managed and those infected can live full lives. However, because it's not in the spotlight, fewer people are being tested.

Susan McCreedy is the Deschutes County Health Educator. She says she's been shocked by a surge of new AIDS diagnoses in the past five years.

Rachael McDonald

The website problems persist for the state's health insurance marketplace, Cover Oregon.  Individuals can compare insurance plans, but the site still can't determine if someone is eligible for financial help.  

This has been a source of frustration for potential customers - and for local organizations working on behalf of Cover Oregon to walk people through the process.

These community partners are counting down the days until the website is fully functional.

Cassandra Profita

Climate change models are predicting hotter summers in the Northwest. And experts say the health risks from that heat are higher in places known as urban heat islands. In the third installment of our series, ‘Symptoms of Climate Change,’ EarthFix reporter Cassandra Profita explains how dark pavement and rooftops in these city neighborhoods make hot weather more hazardous to human health.

Stephens: “Oh, kitty you’ll have to get down. Come on. Shoo.”

New UO App Promotes Safe Sex

Oct 9, 2013
UO Health Department

The University of Oregon health department is hosting a launch party next week for a new app it has created promoting safe sex.

The app, called SexPositive, was created to appeal to the 18 to 23 year olds that attend the University. It lists the sexually transmitted infection risks if different body parts touch, as well as information about safer sex practices. Health Promotion Marketing Manager Keith Van Norman says the message is positive.

The government shutdown may not have immediate impacts on most Oregonians. But, officials say, if it continues for several weeks, veterans and others who depend on federal programs could be affected. Jason Davis is with Lane County Health and Human Services.

Cover Oregon

Oregon's new health insurance marketplace-- part of the Affordable Care Act-- has run into some glitches on its launch day. Cover Oregon's online system is not functioning properly.

Cover Oregon is not correctly determining eligibility for tax credits, the Oregon Health Plan and Healthy Kids. The problem is expected to be fixed in a couple of weeks. Jason Davis with Lane County Health and Human Services says it's possible to get health coverage, just not through the website.

Cover Oregon

On Tuesday, October 1st, Oregon launches its health insurance exchange program-- a key piece of President Obama's health care overhaul. It's called Cover Oregon.

Michael Cox describes the program in a nutshell:

Cox: "Cover Oregon is an online marketplace where customers can come, shop for health insurance, compare plans side by side, access financial help, and get enrolled in coverage, starting in October."

Cox is a communications specialist with Cover Oregon.
He says their goal is to make the process easy.

Home Canning Hobby Leads To Near Fatal Medical Mystery

Sep 26, 2013
Austin Jenkins

Home canning is regaining popularity as part of the local food movement. If done right, families can enjoy home grown fruits, vegetables and even meat all through the winter. But if done wrong it can be devastating, if not deadly. A lawyer for the state of Washington recently learned that lesson the hard way.