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Haitian Women Crossing The Border To Give Birth Overwhelm Dominican Health Care System

“Dominican hospitals and clinics are being overwhelmed by Haitian women … who make up roughly half of the patients giving birth in Dominican hospitals, officials here say,” the Washington Post reports. “They come because they don’t have access to health care in Haiti, especially since last year’s earthquake. They come because they can get free health care in the Dominican Republic each year, and so that they can have their babies in hospitals instead of on the floors of their homes,” the newspaper writes.

PEPFAR Releases 2012 Country Operational Plan Guidance

PEPFAR recently released its 2012 Country Operational Plan Guidance, “which highlights seven program priorities: increasing prevention of mother-to-child transmission (PMTCT) coverage and effectiveness; improving and refining the country’s approach to treatment; programming for prevention impact; TB/HIV integration; testing and counseling; training new health care providers; and capacity building,” according to…

Showing PEPFAR Effectiveness And Value Important In Face Of Budget Negotiations

With “[l]ooming budget cuts for FY2012 and recent reports about the decline in AIDS funding from the USG in FY2010 relative to FY2009 … now, more than ever, PEPFAR needs to better demonstrate the effectiveness and value of its programs,” Nandini Oomman, director of the HIV/AIDS Monitor at the Center…

Asia-Pacific Region Making Gains Against HIV/AIDS, But More Needs To Be Done, UNAIDS Report Says

Though the Asia-Pacific region “has seen impressive gains” in the fight against HIV/AIDS “– including a 20 percent drop in new HIV infections since 2001 and a three-fold increase in access to antiretroviral therapy since 2006 — progress is threatened by an inadequate focus on key populations at higher risk of HIV infection and insufficient funding from both domestic and international sources,” according to a UNAIDS report (.pdf) released on Thursday at the 2011 International Congress on AIDS in Asia and the Pacific (ICAAP) in Busan, South Korea, a UNAIDS press release states (8/26).

Epilepsy 'Treatment Gap' In Sierra Leone A Result Of Stigma, Lack Of Resources, Experts Say

In Sierra Leone, “one of Africa’s poorest countries, … scarce health care resources and the stigma surrounding epilepsy add up to a ‘treatment gap’ of more than 90 percent — meaning that fewer than 10 percent of the estimated 60,000 to 100,000 Sierra Leoneans with epilepsy are getting the treatment they need,” the New York Times reports. “Epilepsy treatment gaps are driven largely by low income and rural location, making sub-Saharan Africa a treatment-gap hot spot. Treatment in Sierra Leone is not expensive,” but “[t]he costs of untreated epilepsy, on the other hand, are enormous, especially in lost productivity,” the newspaper writes.

IPS Examines DNDi Program To Develop Pediatric HIV Drugs

Inter Press Service profiles a program launched by the Drugs for Neglected Diseases Initiative (DNDi) to develop antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) specifically designed for children living with HIV/AIDS. “The program will focus exclusively on developing child-adapted formulations for children under three, the most neglected segment in terms of availability of ARVs. The DNDi hopes to have new pediatric-specific medicines available between 2014 and 2016,” IPS writes. The article examines pediatric HIV treatment issues in India, Kenya and Brazil (Frayssinet et al., 8/29).

Cost Of Second-Line ARVs A 'Huge Barrier To Care' In Resource-Poor Countries

In this U.N. Dispatch blog post, Mark Leon Goldberg, managing editor of the blog, examines the costs of second-line antiretroviral treatments (ARVs), which “are several orders of magnitude more expensive than traditional, first-line ARV treatments” and are a “huge barrier to providing care” for resource-poor countries. He writes of “a huge gap in the way governments and donors have historically approached people living with HIV,” adding that “as more people access first-line treatment, there will be more opportunities for people to develop resistance to that first line. Donors and governments in the developing world simply can’t afford that kind of outlay.”

Aid Floods Into Tripoli, Hospitals Reopen As Fighting Ends In Libya's Capital City

“Tripoli’s hospitals have put the worst behind them after an end to the fighting in Libya’s capital opened the way to a flood of aid and enabled medical staff to get back to work, aid agencies said on Monday,” Reuters reports, adding, “Although the violence in Tripoli has not completely ended, the relative peace has reassured aid agencies that they can now get into the capital.”