Top news of the day from across the health care landscape.
A new study found no evidence that the pain reliever Celebrex, and its generic celecoxib, posed any increased risk for heart attacks and strokes than the 2 other widely-used drugs ibuprofen and naproxen. According to NPR, concern over Celebrex arose more than a decade ago after Vioxx, a similar pain reliever, was pulled from the shelves in 2004 after being linked to strokes and heart attacks. Although researchers and heart specialists caution that Celebrex can increase the chance of cardiovascular complications, it does not appear to increase these odds nearly as much as Vioxx or other painkillers that are believed to be safer. In fact, the drug may be less risky than other nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs, NPR reported.
More than 3 out of 4 caregivers spend an average of nearly $7000 in out-of-pocket costs per year, an AARP survey revealed. Researchers surveyed 1864 family caregivers in July and August, while participants were expected to also keep track of their personal spending in a diary, according to Kaiser Health News. The study revealed that the costs consumed the equivalent of one-fifth of the caregivers’ incomes on average, while the financial burdens were found to be even greater for individuals with lower incomes. Caregivers who experienced the greatest financial burden tapped their savings or took out loans. Many caregivers even had to sacrifice personal essentials: 19% decreased their own visits to their physicians, 18% bought fewer groceries, and 5% spent less on their child’s education, reported Kaiser. Being a caregiver also affected surveyor’s careers, with nearly 1 in 3 changing work hours, almost 30% took paid time off, and 22% took unpaid time off.
Despite repeatedly pledging during his campaign to repeal Obamacare, President-elect Donald Trump stated that he would consider leaving certain parts of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) in place, reported The Wall Street Journal. In an exclusive interview with the Journal, the first since being elected, Trump said one of his priorities while in office was to move quickly on President Barack Obama’s health initiative, stating that the ACA has become expensive and unworkable. However, Trump also showed a willingness to leave at least 2 provisions of the law in place after Obama asked him to consider repealing it during their meeting at the White House, according to the Journal.