Dr. Kelly Rhone surveys a large map that notes the client hospitals that use the virtual emergency room services offered by Avera eCare. The center re

S.D. telemedicine center provides remote emergency care for 179 hospitals in 30 states

As rural health gap widens, even emergencies are treated from afar.

Making childbirth safer for rural Minnesota moms

December 7
Sen. Tina Smith, D-Minn., speaks during an executive session of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee on Capitol Hill in Washingt
Tina Smith is a co-author of a bill that would award grants to rural communities that come up with new ways to support expecting mothers and improve birth outcomes.

Woman's gene mutation could aid fight against Alzheimer's

December 5
Neurologist Francisco Lopera has been studying one sprawling Colombian family that has a higher risk of Alzheimer’s.
That suggests that treatments could be developed to give other people that same protective mechanism.
National
23 minutes ago

Justices seem to favor insurers' Obamacare claims for $12B

The Supreme Court appeared likely Tuesday to rule that insurance companies can collect $12 billion from the federal government to cover their losses in the early years of the health care law championed by President Barack Obama.
National
9:45am

Report: black lung funding cut will cost taxpayers billions

A cut to the tax coal companies pay to fund a trust for sick miners will cost taxpayers at least $15 billion by 2050, according to a new report from a national watchdog group.
Variety
8:53am
Neighbors worked together on Dec. 1 in an effort to clear out as much snow as possible from E. 8th Street in Duluth.

Snow shoveling results in 11,500 injuries a year

The longer it snowed and the deeper the snow, the higher the rates of hospitalization and death — especially for men.
National
6:55am

Duluth to consider banning conversion therapy

Duluth is the latest city to consider banning conversion therapy aimed at changing a person's sexual orientation.
National
December 9

Massachusetts lab to pay $26M for scheme with Texas doctors

Boston Heart Diagnostics Corporation agreed to pay nearly $27 million to settle claims that it allegedly paid doctors in Texas and waived patient co-payments in exchange for lab tests it then billed to federal healthcare programs, the U.S. Department of Justice announced Monday.
National
December 9

White House backs emerging deal on consumer health costs

The White House endorsed an emerging bipartisan agreement Monday on legislation aimed at curbing rising health care costs, including taking steps to limit "surprise" medical bills that can plague patients treated in emergency rooms.
Variety
December 9

Correction: Opioids-Sacklers-Tufts story

In a story December 5, 2019, about Tufts University's decision to cut ties with the Sackler family, The Associated Press, relying on information provided by Tufts, erroneously reported that Richard Sackler is a current board member of Purdue Pharma. Richard Sackler left the board in July 2018.
National
December 9

Court to hear resentencing bid in Arizona death penalty case

The U.S. Supreme Court will hear an appeal Wednesday by an Arizona death row inmate who is seeking a new sentencing trial, arguing the horrific physical abuse that he suffered as a child wasn't fully considered when he was first sentenced.
Variety
December 9

Brain differences may be tied to obesity, kids' study says

New results from the largest long-term study of brain development and children's health raise provocative questions about obesity and brain function.Does excess body weight somehow…
Variety
December 9

US Catholic priests describe turmoil amid sex abuse crisis

More than a century ago, waves of Catholic immigrants from Ireland, Poland and Quebec settled in Chicopee and other western Massachusetts mill towns, helping build churches, rectories and schools to accommodate their faith. Today the priests leading those churches are under siege due to stresses, challenges and sex abuse scandals complicating their lives and those of their fellow priests across the United States.
National
December 9

Supreme Court leaves Kentucky's ultrasound law in place

The Supreme Court on Monday left in place a Kentucky law requiring doctors to perform ultrasounds and show fetal images to patients before abortions.
National
December 9

UnitedHealth plans bargain bid for Diplomat Pharmacy

UnitedHealth plans to acquire Diplomat Pharmacy at a steep discount about a month after the specialty drug provider said it may not be able to…
Variety
December 9

West Virginians head to Canada to find affordable insulin

A group of West Virginians left the country Sunday in search of affordable insulin — they went to Canada, where insulin prices are reported to be about a tenth of what it costs people in the United States.
Nation
December 7
Samoa’s main streets were quiet on Thursday when the government shut down to deal with the measles epidemic. But there was a lot of activity at a he

Measles surging worldwide as anti-vax message spreads

In 2018, most fatal cases struck children younger than 5; fewer than 70% of children worldwide were estimated to have received a second dose of measles vaccine last year.
Local
December 7
Sen. Jim Abeler, R-Anoka, questioned new Department of Human Services Commissioner Jodi Harpstead in September. Abeler said it’s unfair to ask the c

Minnesota counties resist costly payments for Department of Human Services errors

The department is trying to collect $9 million from counties for mistakes it made.
St. Paul
December 7
Bethesda will no longer accept patients from other hospital systems except in emergencies, said James Hereford, chief executive of Fairview Health.

Fairview Health will shrink Bethesda Hospital in St. Paul by half

Parent organization Fairview Health is responding to a budget deficit and larger doubts about long-term care hospitals.
National
December 6

Bipartisan Medicare drug bill gets makeover to lower copays

A bipartisan Senate bill to curb prescription drug costs for Medicare recipients got a makeover Friday to lower copays and make it easier for seniors to budget for their expenses.
Variety
December 6
In this Monday, Sept. 23, 2019 photo released by Northwest Metro Drug Task Force/Minnesota Departments of Public Safety shows "Dank" packaging, part o

Officials list pot vape brands reported in US outbreak

Health officials investigating a nationwide outbreak of vaping illnesses have listed, for the first time, the vape brands most commonly linked to hospitalizations.
Variety
December 6
An early barrage of illness in the South has begun to spread more broadly, and there's a decent chance flu season could peak much earlier than normal,

U.S. winter flu season is off to its earliest start in more than 15 years

The U.S. winter flu season is off to its earliest start in more than 15 years.
Variety
December 6

Texas IDs cancer cluster in polluted Houston neighborhood

Texas health officials identified a cancer cluster in a north Houston neighborhood polluted by the wood preservative creosote from a nearby railroad operation, prompting calls from residents and the city for a more in-depth investigation of potential ongoing risks.