rhode island department of health

The Pulse
2:26 pm
Tue December 16, 2014

Ever Sign An Agreement With Your Doctor?

At a public hearing yesterday at the Dept. of Health, doctors, dentists, physician assistants, and advanced practice nurses voiced their opposition to the department's proposed regulations governing the prescribing of opioids. The new rules would require prescribers to sign a fairly lengthy agreement with patients, alerting them to the risks of taking prescription painkillers like OxyContin and Vicodin, and agreeing to certain kinds of monitoring. Many health care providers feel these agreements aren't necessary and that, in fact, they're patronizing.

What do you think?

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Health Care
3:26 pm
Mon December 15, 2014

Proposed Rules Could Change Painkiller Prescribing

Donna Policastro, representing Rhode Island nurses, says the proposed regulations are unnecessary.
Credit Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Rhode Island health officials are considering new regulations governing how health care providers prescribe painkillers. So far this year, 212 Rhode Islanders have died from accidental drug overdoses, most involving opioids, according to the health department.

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Health Care
2:07 pm
Fri November 14, 2014

Community Health Centers Join Ebola Preparations

Hospitals have gotten most of the attention when it comes to Ebola preparedness. But at a recent hearing for state lawmakers, questions were raised about the readiness of community-based health care providers to deal with the threat. 

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The Pulse
12:22 pm
Thu November 13, 2014

Health Dept. Releases Ebola Emergency Plan

An Ebola prep cart, with personal protective equipment, at Rhode Island Hospital.
Credit Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

Rhode Island health officials have unveiled the state’s Ebola emergency response plan. The plan spells out the steps state agencies will take to handle potential cases.

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Health Care
1:05 pm
Wed October 29, 2014

Health Dept. Conducts Ebola "Exercises" With Hospitals

The Rhode Island health department says it’s conducting exercises with hospitals to test their readiness for Ebola patients.

In a weekly update to reporters, state health officials say there are no cases of Ebola in Rhode Island, although they have investigated – and ruled out – "a number of" possible cases since August.

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Health Care
2:40 pm
Fri October 24, 2014

For Now, Monitoring, But No Isolation For W. African Arrivals

The Rhode Island Department of Health says it’s currently monitoring several recent arrivals from West Africa to guard against Ebola. But some members of the West African community want the health department to do more.

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Health Care
10:44 am
Wed October 1, 2014

Health Officials Report First Death With Possible Link To EV-D68

Rhode Island Dept. of Health director Dr. Michael Fine speaks to reporters Wednesday morning about the child's death.
Credit Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

A child from Rhode Island has died from a combination of infections, including enterovirus D68, or EV-D68. It’s one of the first known deaths with some kind of link to EV-D68. What role the respiratory virus played in the child’s death is still unclear.

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The Pulse
12:06 pm
Fri September 26, 2014

On Eve Of AIDS Walk, News Of Lower HIV Awareness

Tomorrow (Saturday, Sept. 27) is the 29th annual AIDS Walk for Life, which begins at 10 am at the statehouse. Organizers (AIDS Project RI) are offering free, rapid HIV tests on site.

The event happens against the backdrop of news this week of lower awareness among gay men of HIV screening and treatment recommendations.

From Kaiser Health News:

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Health Care
11:57 am
Wed September 24, 2014

CDC Confirms 1st Case of EV-D68 In Rhode Island

Rhode Island’s first case of enterovirus D68 has been confirmed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The virus is responsible for some hospitalizations, but so far no deaths.

Rhode Island’s first case of the respiratory virus has been confirmed in an adult, who was recently hospitalized but has been discharged. It’s already been confirmed in neighboring states. Rhode Island sent a batch of specimens to the CDC for testing, and this is the first to come back positive.

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Health Care
9:19 am
Fri September 19, 2014

Rhode Island Waiting To Find Out If Enterovirus D68 Is In The State

Rhode Island health officials are waiting to find out if enterovirus D68 has hit the Ocean State. The virus has been confirmed in 18 states so far, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  Health officials in Connecticut confirmed the first case there earlier this week.

That’s the closest state to Rhode Island to have any confirmed cases of the virus, though the Rhode Island Department of Health says it’s seen increases in respiratory problems in emergency rooms across the state.

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