HEALTH

New Health Reform Report website provides ‘real facts, trusted analysis’ about healthcare law

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON Newt Gingrich, former House speaker and founder of the Center for Health Transformation, unveiled a new website on Wednesday — HealthReformReport.com — dedicated to providing “real facts, trusted analysis” with news about how the new federal healthcare law impacts individuals, doctors, businesses, hospitals, insurers and others.

“If you want to know what this means for you, this is the site where you can cut through red tape to get the answers,” Gingrich said. “No government jargon. No painful, twisted bureaucratic explanations. Just the facts. Pure and simple.”

HealthReformReport.com will be a compilation of news stories and pieces written by contributors from public policy analysts, think tanks, the medical profession and others who analyze the upcoming policy ramifications of the healthcare law and what it means to individuals, employers, physicians, hospitals and more.

"I imagine anyone who goes to this website will have their eyes wide open,” stated Nancy Desmond, CEO of the Center for Health Transformation, a sponsor of the site. “It should become a trusted source for anyone trying to learn about the healthcare law, just as political junkies go to Politico.com or sports fans go to ESPN’s website.”

 

Gingrich said there is no single source for information about the new healthcare law. The Health Reform Report will provide a simple timeline of implementation changes for those who want to anticipate a certain tax or policy requirement, for example. To learn more, visit HealthReformReport.com.

 

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HEALTH

Kaz launches ‘Cold and Flu Central’ Facebook page

BY Michael Johnsen

SOUTHBOROUGH, Mass. Kaz, the maker of Vicks, Honeywell and Braun wellness devices, recently launched a new Facebook fan page named Cold and Flu Central, created to help inform families about some of the best defenses against colds and the flu.

 

The page includes doctor-approved tips, third-party expert advice and links, product giveaways, drug store availability information, discussions and polls.

 

 

Jennifer Trachtenberg, chief pediatric officer for RealAge.com, is the featured pediatrician on the site. In addition, two other experts will be providing tips to fans on how to stay healthy this winter: Jim McDevitt, an instructor at the Harvard School of Public Health and certified as an industrial hygienist by the American Board of Industrial Hygiene; and Ted Myatt, a senior scientist at Environmental Health and Engineering. Myatt also is the biological safety officer at Brigham and Women’s Hospital and the Harvard Institute of Medicine in Massachusetts.

 

 

To help drive interest in the site, Kaz will be giving away one Vicks Cool Mist humidifier, Vicks digital thermometer or Braun ThermoScan ear thermometer each week.

 

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Lobbyists respond to Senate’s delay to review food safety bill

BY Allison Cerra

WASHINGTON A coalition of lobbying groups urged the Senate on Monday to review and pass pending food safety legislation before November elections.

The Food Marketing Institute, which backed the bipartisan bill, issued a statement Monday that the organization was "disappointed" that the Senate elected not to review the Food and Drug Administration Food Safety Modernization Act before the midterm elections. The bill passed in the House of Representatives last year.

 

"The most important goal of America’s food retailers and wholesalers is to provide nutritious, safe, high-quality and affordable food," said FMI president and CEO Leslie Sarasin. "We all have a responsibility to work together to improve the safety of our food supply. We believe the focus should be on trying to prevent problems before they occur by providing the FDA the necessary resources and authority to help the agency protect our food supply."

 

 

Similarly, the Grocery Manufacturers Association said on Capitol Hill Monday that “the [FDA Food Safety Modernization] Act is too important to delay its passage any further,” noting that the bill’s passage would provide the FDA “with the resources and authorities the agency needs to help strengthen our nation’s food safety system by making prevention the focus of our food safety strategies,” said Scott Faber, GMA VP federal affairs.

 

The FDA Food Safety Modernization Act will enhance public health and safety by requiring all food companies to develop a food safety plan, adopting a risk-based approach to inspection and improving the safety of imported food and food ingredients.

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