Healthcare

The deadly impact of Hurricane María extends to US hospitals

Power outages set off IV bag shortages

By Genevieve Leigh, 13 January 2018

Ongoing power outages in Puerto Rico have set off a severe crisis of IV bag shortages on the US mainland, exacerbated by a sharp increase in flu cases nationwide.

Trump officials say states can impose Medicaid work requirements

By Kate Randall, 12 January 2018

The administration’s aim in imposing work requirements is to gut the health care program for the poor, which currently covers about 74 million people.

The crisis of dental care under American capitalism

By Esther Galen, 11 January 2018

Teeth: The Story of Beauty, Inequality, and the Struggle for Oral Health in America, exposes the reality of poor dental health and lack of dental care endured by the working class and poor in the US.

Deadly influenza outbreak spreads throughout US, most severe in California

By Dan Conway, 9 January 2018

Over the past few weeks, cases of influenza and influenza-related illnesses have skyrocketed, reaching near epidemic level proportions.

Australian aged care workers confront worsening conditions

By Michelle Stevens, 9 January 2018

Decades of government funding cuts, combined with the rise of corporate profit-making operators, have led to severe under-staffing.

Britain’s National Health Service is being deliberately brought to the brink of collapse

By Robert Stevens, 6 January 2018

NHS employees now often refer to the conditions they face at work as a “battlefield” or “war zone.”

British National Health Service faces escalating crisis due to chronic underfunding

By Dennis Moore, 5 January 2018

The head of the Kings College hospital trust, one of the largest in the UK, resigned citing the inability of hospitals to provide adequate care amidst soaring demand.

Head of Britain’s NHS demands national roll-out of drunk tanks

By Julie Hyland, 3 January 2018

There is a direct relationship between this orgy of financial parasitism and the explosion of self-medication.

Trump administration rolls back fines against nursing homes as violations mount

By Kate Randall, 30 December 2017

By one government estimate, a staggering 380,000 deaths a year may be the result of health care-associated infections in facilities for the elderly.

Insights into a new class of HIV retroviral drugs

By Benjamin Mateus, 30 December 2017

Recent investigation into the process of the HIV virus capsid maturation suggests a new method of disrupting its ability to infect.

Hepatitis A outbreak continues to impact Southeast Michigan

By Muhammad Khan, 29 December 2017

Michigan had the highest per capita rate of hepatitis A infections in the United States with more than 500 cases recorded in 2017.

Health care threatened for nine million low-income US children

By Patrick Martin, 27 December 2017

The temporary “fix” to the Children’s Health Insurance Program, applied by Congress in legislation passed December 21, could actually speed the program’s collapse.

Virgin Care: A case study in how private corporations loot the UK’s National Health Service

By Ajanta Silva, 23 December 2017

The Surrey Downs Clinical Commissioning Group accidentally disclosed a backdoor payment of £328,000 to Virgin Care, owned by billionaire business mogul Richard Branson.

Hepatitis A outbreaks hit Southeast Michigan and San Diego

By Benjamin Mateus, 19 December 2017

San Diego, with the fourth largest community of homeless in the US, has seen 567 cases of Hepatitis A, with 382 hospitalizations and 20 deaths.

Homeless man found dead in donation bin in San Diego, California

By Kevin Martinez, 19 December 2017

The bin where the man was discovered was located in a shopping center parking lot one block away from the San Diego Rescue Mission, a homeless shelter.

UK government accelerates plans to ration and privatise National Health Service

By Ajanta Silva, 9 December 2017

In his budget, Tory Chancellor Hammond allocated a derisory £2.8 billon for the NHS over the next three years, under conditions in which the combined deficit of NHS trusts alone stood at £770 million last financial year.

CVS to purchase Aetna for $69 billion, in move expected to disrupt health care industry

By Gabriel Black, 7 December 2017

The merger would create a level of vertical integration unprecedented in US health care, while netting Aetna’s outgoing CEO half a billion dollars.

UK health care cuts will lead to 100 additional deaths each day

By Margot Miller, 28 November 2017

A landmark study reveals the dirty secret of austerity policies being imposed all over the world: the more money is cut, the more people are sent to an early grave.

Sugar industry withheld evidence linking sucrose to bladder cancer for five decades

By Bryan Dyne, 28 November 2017

Internal documents also reveal that the sugar industry suppressed research linking sucrose and heart disease.

A health statistics system in shambles

The real maternal mortality rate in the United States

By Benjamin Mateus, 24 November 2017

The true scope of maternal mortality rate in the US remains uncertain due to inconsistent and under-reporting on death certificates.

New York Mayor de Blasio covered up for city’s failure to test for lead contamination in public housing

By Philip Guelpa, 23 November 2017

De Blasio and the New York City public housing authority covered up the city’s failure to conduct mandated lead paint inspections for four years.

California health authorities identify three more cases of Legionnaires’ disease

By Brad Dixon, 20 November 2017

This brings the total number of cases of the disease in the past month to 15, two of which have been fatal.

The legacy of Obamacare: A five percent increase in heart patient deaths

By Kate Randall, 15 November 2017

Research published in JAMA Cardiology shows that an initiative introduced five years ago under Obamacare to reduce Medicare readmissions for heart patients has resulted in a significant increase in mortality rates.

Trump nominates former pharmaceuticals executive to head Health and Human Services

By Kate Randall, 14 November 2017

Alex Azar has a long history of traversing the revolving door between government and big business.

Trump administration encourages states to gut Medicaid, impose work requirements

By Zaida Green, 10 November 2017

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services will actively “partner” with states to impose premiums, punitive work requirements and other restrictions on Medicaid.

In part due to Trump sabotage

Obamacare premiums to soar in 2018

By Kate Randall, 4 November 2017

The most vulnerable population group will be households—as many as 2 million people—that are ineligible for subsidies.

Toddler hospitalised after Atlanta hospital denies father’s kidney transplant for son

By Zaida Green, 1 November 2017

Emory University Hospital is demanding that the father of the two-year-old document three months of parole compliance before he is allowed to donate his kidney.

Severe US nursing shortage accelerates rural hospital closures

By Gary Joad, 1 November 2017

Changing healthcare needs, demographic shifts and the choking down of funding for nurse training will leave the US short of 1.2 million nurses in two years time.

America’s oligarchy: No money for opioid crisis, endless funds for corporate tax cuts

By Andre Damon, 28 October 2017

On the same day that Congress moved forward on nearly $6 trillion in tax cuts to the super-rich, the Trump administration declined to allocate any funds to address the opioid crisis.

Trump administration’s CMS head leads assault on Medicaid

By Kate Randall, 28 October 2017

Seema Verma sees the expansion of Medicaid under Obamacare as having extended coverage to millions of low-income Americans who should not be getting government-sponsored health insurance.

Survey of UK nurses exposes staff crisis in National Health Service

By Ajanta Silva, 28 October 2017

214 out of 224 acute hospitals operated without an adequate level of nursing staff during day shifts last October, while 85 percent of them did not have proper staff levels on night shifts.

Trump declares opioid epidemic “will get worse before it gets better”

By Patrick Martin, 27 October 2017

The official declaration of a “public health emergency” is a political stunt that adds not one dollar to efforts to save the lives and health of millions suffering from opioid addiction.

Australian flu epidemic inundates public health services

By John Mackay, 25 October 2017

Emergency room visits reached record levels at the peak of the winter season in many major hospitals.

New reports document declining life expectancy and worsening health of US workers

By Jerry White, 24 October 2017

Middle-age workers are being forced to retire later, even as they confront poorer health and a lower life expectancy than their older peers.

“I think the government is trying to kill us off”

Hundreds line up for free medical care in West Virginia

By Jerry White and Zac Corrigan, 23 October 2017

The free clinic event in Charleston revealed the deep social crisis in the United States, which is largely ignored by the corporate controlled media.

Trump’s Department of Justice attempts to block 17-year-old immigrant from getting abortion

By Josh Varlin, 23 October 2017

The government’s arguments against allowing the unaccompanied minor to receive an abortion mirror the notorious Dred Scott decision and presage a further attack on democratic rights.

Trump rejects bipartisan health care plan a day after endorsing it

By Kate Randall, 19 October 2017

The bulk of the Alexander-Murray bill is aimed at lowering requirements for private insurers and reducing the quality of health care coverage offered.

California declares state of emergency over Hepatitis A outbreak as death toll rises to 19

By Kevin Martinez, 19 October 2017

While the number of new cases shows signs of slowing, the city of San Diego has forcefully removed homeless encampments from the downtown area.

Merchants of Death: The pharmaceuticals, Congress and the US opioid epidemic

By Genevieve Leigh, 19 October 2017

A recent investigation by the Washington Post and “60 Minutes” has exposed the complicity of the pharmaceutical giants and the Democratic and Republican parties in the worst drug epidemic in US history.

Behind the opioid crisis: Republicans and Obama cleared the way for corporate murder

By Patrick Martin, 16 October 2017

A joint investigation by “60 Minutes” and the Washington Post found that Republicans and Democrats in Washington did the bidding of giant drug distribution companies responsible for fueling the opioid crisis.

Deaths caused by Leptospirosis reported in Puerto Rico

By Benjamin Mateus, 16 October 2017

There is a scarcity of clean water in rural communities, whose residents are resorting to washing and bathing in local rivers and springs.

Youth suicides at a record high in the UK

By Alice Summers, 14 October 2017

Economic and academic pressures on young people are exacerbated by a systemic decrease of funding for mental health counselling.

A new stage in the bipartisan health care counterrevolution

Following Trump executive orders, Democrats offer Obamacare “fix”

By Kate Randall, 14 October 2017

Any “compromise” on health care reform is a conspiracy against the working class, premised on the subordination of the need for health care to the profits of the corporations and the capitalist market.

White House prepares executive order undercutting Obamacare

By Kate Randall, 11 October 2017

Small businesses would be able to establish association health plans free from Obamacare requirements to cover essential medical services.

British Clinical Commissioning Group to slash health services in Dorset

By Ajanta Silva, 11 October 2017

More than 75,000 people signed petitions against the Clinical Service Review, with many thousands across the county participating in protest marches, meetings and gatherings in Dorchester, Poole and Bournemouth.

Trump administration limits access to birth control under ACA

By Trévon Austin, 7 October 2017

A new mandate revokes the requirement for companies and organizations that claim religious or moral objections to provide birth control.

For one in four US women: Nearest abortion facility over 30 miles away

By Zaida Green, 6 October 2017

In many counties, women must travel dozens or hundreds of miles to reach an abortion facility and are often forced to travel to another state.

Nobel Prize in Medicine awarded for discoveries on the circadian rhythm

By Benjamin Mateus, 4 October 2017

The three scientists explored the molecular processes through which the body adapts physiologically to the Earth’s rotation, including the sleep-wake cycle and much more.

US Congress fails to reauthorize insurance program covering 9 million children

By Kate Randall, 3 October 2017

The failure to reauthorize CHIP threatens health insurance coverage for about 9 million lower-income children across the US.

Access to obstetric services in rural US communities continues to decline

By Benjamin Mateus, 3 October 2017

Nine percent of rural counties lost hospital-based obstetric services over the last decade meaning that more than half now have no such services at all.

CDC report finds large increase in sexually transmitted disease across the US

By Matthew Taylor, 2 October 2017

The rise in easily preventable and treatable diseases, including syphilis, has coincided with the slashing of funding for public health programs and clinics, which provide accessible testing and treatments.

“Health care is a human right”

IYSSE speaks at health care rally at University of Illinois Chicago

By our reporters, 28 September 2017

While organizers of a rally at UIC promoted Sanders’ single-payer “Medicare for All” bill, the IYSSE outlined the socialist response to health care crisis.

As Republican Obamacare repeal collapses, Democrats push pro-corporate “compromise”

By Josh Varlin, 27 September 2017

The Democrats are seeking a bipartisan deal with the Republicans that would retain the basic framework of Obamacare while introducing regressive changes being demanded by the insurance monopolies.

San Diego death toll from hepatitis A outbreak rises to 16

By Kevin Martinez, 25 September 2017

City officials knew that a public health crisis was brewing years before the current outbreak but rejected preventive measures as too costly.

FDA recommends approval of new leukemia treatment

By Benjamin Mateus, 23 September 2017

This is the first time that white blood cells have been successfully engineered to fight off a cancer.

Senate Republicans push for another Obamacare “repair and repeal” bill

By Kate Randall, 20 September 2017

In addition to phasing out Medicaid expansion, the Cassidy-Graham legislation, beginning in 2027, would slash billions more from Medicaid and end it as a guaranteed program.

Sanders health care bill: A cover for Democratic Party deals with Trump

By Patrick Martin, 14 September 2017

The legislation offers a single-payer health care system that most Democratic senators and all Republicans oppose.

Australian state government and health union shut down pathology strike

By Jason Quill and Oscar Grenfell, 7 September 2017

The Health Services Union welcomed the Victorian Labor government’s application for the federal Fair Work Commission to ban the stoppage.

Study highlights health epidemic: More than one in four US adults is obese

By Kayla Costa, 6 September 2017

Adult obesity rates for 2016 hit over 30 percent in 25 US states, and, in five states, topped 35 percent, the highest levels in the world.

Trump administration halts study on health impact of surface mining

By Keisha Gibbs, 6 September 2017

The Trump administration has ordered an abrupt halt to a study into potential public health hazards in areas near surface coal mining operations in Central Appalachia.

San Diego declares public health emergency after death toll from Hepatitis A outbreak rises to 14

By Kevin Martinez, 5 September 2017

At least ten people have succumbed to the infectious disease since officials promised a solution more than two months ago.

Fetid floodwaters in the “chemical coast” carry toxins and disease

The incalculable human health consequences of Hurricane Harvey

By Gary Joad, 2 September 2017

The flooding in Houston, the acknowledged petrochemical capital of the world, has unleashed a toxic soup of chemicals, carcinogens and bacteria, posing a grave threat to human life.

Inherited genetic disorder corrected in human embryos

By Benjamin Mateus, 2 September 2017

New research in the study of the human genome has provided a new way to reduce or potentially eliminate inherited genetic disorders by correcting harmful genetic mutations while the subject is still an embryo.

Serious outbreaks of syphilis and hepatitis underscore social crisis in America

By Genevieve Leigh, 30 August 2017

Among drug users and the homeless in the US, diseases such as syphilis and hepatitis are making a dangerous comeback.

Medicaid sees big price hikes for decades-old drugs

By Brad Dixon, 28 August 2017

Medicaid spending on old and commonly used drugs increased by billions of dollars in 2016 compared to the previous year.

Nearly 10 million US seniors food-insecure

Worsening hunger for older Americans

By Gary Joad, 22 August 2017

Some 14.7 percent of US seniors are food-insecure, a rise of 37 percent over 2001.

Young doctor suicides point to deteriorating conditions in Australia’s health system

By Ed Ballesteros, 22 August 2017

The ostensible concern of governments for the well-being of health professionals is belied by funding cuts that have stretched public hospitals to breaking point.

“Health care should be a right, not a privilege”

Thousands flock to free medical care event in Detroit

By WSWS reporting team, 12 August 2017

Like other free clinics throughout the US, the Motor City Medical Mission revealed the deep health care crisis in America.

As Americans die younger, corporations to reap billions in pension costs

By Kate Randall, 11 August 2017

Shortened life expectancy is the result of deteriorating conditions of life, exacerbated by the deliberate policy of both big business parties to restrict access to affordable health care.

Opioid-related deaths soaring in Australia

By Margaret Rees, 11 August 2017

New research points to a rapidly growing number of fatalities, far outstripping heroin overdose deaths.

US health catastrophe: Drug overdose deaths approach 60,000 a year

By E.P. Milligan, 10 August 2017

More Americans have died from drug overdoses since 2000 than in all the wars of the 20th and 21st centuries combined.

Thousands attend free health care event in Detroit

By a WSWS reporting team, 10 August 2017

Like other free clinics throughout the US, the Motor City Medical Mission revealed the deep health care crisis in America.

Indiana Medicaid plan under Pence seen as model for attack on health care

By Matthew Taylor, 5 August 2017

In 2015 the state of Indiana introduced a Medicaid expansion plan which converts the entitlement program into a fee-based insurance program.

Democrats offer pro-corporate health care “compromise”

By Kate Randall, 5 August 2017

The Democratic Party’s response to the debacle for Trump was to offer its services in implementing the demands of the insurance giants for “repairing” Obamacare so as to better ensure reduced costs and fatter profits.

Native American health care to be gutted as tribal elites support private markets

By Kayla Costa, 4 August 2017

Tribal leaders are encouraging Native Americans to enter the private health insurance market, placing the medical coverage of over 300,000 people at risk.

US study shows uninsured twice as likely to suffer from opioid abuse

By Genevieve Leigh, 2 August 2017

Despite the immense scale of the national health crisis, the debate in Washington is focused on slashing Medicaid, which provides addiction treatment to low-income people.

Democratic campaign chairman declares willingness to fund anti-abortion candidates

By Nick Barrickman, 2 August 2017

The Democrats’ adaptation to the Republican right and anti-abortion sentiment comes amid factional infighting after Hillary Clinton’s loss in the 2016 presidential election.

In wake of Republican failure on ACA repeal

Trump administration moves to undercut Medicaid and Obamacare exchanges

By Kate Randall, 1 August 2017

A number of states are seeking federal permission to require Medicaid enrollees to work, submit to drug testing or pay monthly premiums.

Experts warn of public health crisis as Detroit rejects halt to water shutoffs

By Kathleen Martin, 1 August 2017

Data from the Henry Ford Global Health Initiative found that patients are 1.55 times more likely to get a water-borne illness if they live on a block where a water shutoff occurs.

Britain’s National Health Service being gutted through privatisation

By Jean Shaoul, 1 August 2017

According to the NHS Support Federation, more than one third (£5.5 billion) of £16 billion in contracts awarded by the clinical commissioning groups have gone to the private sector.

UK: More nurses and midwives quit as onslaught against NHS intensifies

By Ajanta Silva, 31 July 2017

The exodus of nurses and midwives takes place amid a broader shortage of 40,000 nurses and 3,500 midwives in England alone.

US Senate fails to pass Obamacare repeal legislation

By Kate Randall, 29 July 2017

The defeat of the Republican health care legislation marks a temporary pause in the assault on Medicaid as a guaranteed social benefit based on need.

Brain damage found in 99 percent of deceased NFL players

By Alan Gilman, 28 July 2017

The study showed that repeated head injuries cause chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE).

Way cleared for bipartisan attack on Medicaid

US Senate votes to open debate on Republican health care legislation

By Kate Randall, 26 July 2017

Despite certain tactical differences, both big business parties are in agreement on unprecedented cuts in health care and the dismantling of the core social programs dating from the 1930s and 1960s.

As Trump seeks to revive bill to “repeal and replace” Obamacare

Democrats push for bipartisan plan to slash health care

By Barry Grey, 20 July 2017

The Democratic Party response to Republican disarray over health care is to push for a bipartisan bill that would “fix” Obamacare to make it even more punitive for working people and more profitable for the giant insurance companies.

New study shows half of all opiate prescriptions given to patients suffering from depression or anxiety

By Matthew Taylor, 20 July 2017

The study’s conclusions point to the widespread overprescribing of opiates to those diagnosed with mental illness.

White House and Republicans fail on “repeal and replace” of Obamacare

By Kate Randall, 19 July 2017

This turn of events marks a stunning defeat for President Trump, who has made a “repeal and replace” of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) one of his central policy goals.

The opioid epidemic in the US: A national health emergency

By Genevieve Leigh, 18 July 2017

The drug epidemic is a symptom of a diseased social system, the product of nearly four decades of social counterrevolution overseen by the ruling class and its political representatives, Democratic and Republican.

Michigan researchers investigate connection between Flint water crisis and high infant mortality rate

By Carlos Delgado, 18 July 2017

The city of Flint saw a significant increase in rate of infants who died before their first birthday in 2015, when the lead-in-water crisis was at its height.

UK contaminated blood scandal has global dimensions

By Barry Mason, 17 July 2017

The 2,400 who died in the UK are among the tens of thousands impacted worldwide due to profiteering from the sale of infected blood.

Tufts Medical Center lockout to end with no gains for nurses

By John Marion, 17 July 2017

The Massachusetts Nurses Association (MNA) and Democratic Party politicians are using stunts to pressure management into negotiations while nurses go without pay.

Australia: Hundreds evacuated after toxic blaze at Melbourne recycling plant

By Will Marshall, 17 July 2017

The SKM fire is a product of the systematic gutting of environmental health and safety regulations, as well as town planning and construction guidelines.

As Senate health plan calls for gutting Medicaid

Study shows US has poorest health, widest health care gap between rich and poor

By Kate Randall, 15 July 2017

In the United States, your level of income defines your access to health care, the quality of care you receive, and whether you will meet with an early death because of it.

US Senate Republicans’ revised health bill maintains draconian Medicaid cuts

By Kate Randall, 14 July 2017

The Senate’s Better Care Reconciliation Act would mark the effective end of Medicaid as a guaranteed government insurance program based on need.

Trump administration signs law stripping job protections from Department of Veterans Affairs employees

By Nick Barrickman, 14 July 2017

The Accountability and Whistleblower Protection Act marks a deepening of the attack on federal workers.

Tufts Medical Center in Boston locks out 1,200 nurses after one-day strike

By John Marion, 14 July 2017

Nurses fighting understaffing and pension attacks face a battle against both big business parties, which defend for-profit medicine.

Nurses strike Tufts Medical Center in Boston

Hospital plans punitive five-day lockout

By Kate Randall, 13 July 2017

Nurses are demanding the hospital increase staffing and resources, make salaries more competitive and keep a decent pension plan intact.

A generation of orphans

The impact of US opioid epidemic on foster care and social services

By Genevieve Leigh, 12 July 2017

Social service workers, health care workers, and nonprofit organizers spoke to the WSWS about the devastating consequences of the opioid epidemic on children.

Eighty arrested on Capitol Hill protesting legislation

Senate Republicans maneuver in effort to pass draconian health care bill

By Kate Randall, 11 July 2017

A new poll shows that only 17 percent of US adults approve of the Better Care Reconciliation Act, the Senate Republicans’ heath care bill, while 55 percent disapprove.

UK National Health Service destruction continues with mass land sell-off

By Dennis Moore, 11 July 2017

With NHS trusts being forced to rush through the sale of assets, the only beneficiaries will be those who are buying, including property speculators.