Health Advice



Horse Sense

Scott LaFee on

A new study reports that adolescents who are inpatients at opioid addiction treatment centers are more likely to be offered horseback riding therapy than given full access to a common, highly effective addiction medication called buprenorphine.

The study found just 10.6% of facilities offered buprenorphine initiation and continued treatment while 25% of all facilities surveyed offered equine therapy, an approach not supported by evidence.

"You expect that the sickest kids, the kids with the least access, are going to be the kids in these residential treatment centers," study co-author Caroline King told STAT. "And if they can't access 'bupe' there, it might be a red flag that they also really can't access it in communities and outpatient providers."

Body of Knowledge

It's true that chewing gum is largely indigestible. It's not true that, if swallowed, it sits for years (forever?) in your stomach. Like everything else you eat, purposefully or not, the body has a process. In this case, it involves moving indigestible materials (such as fiber and gum) through the intestinal tract until they are eventually expelled.

Still, it's not a good idea to routinely swallow gum, which in abundance may clump together to form a gut-blocking mass called a bezoar.


Get Me That, Stat!

High costs aren't the only barriers blocking people, even those with insurance, from health care. Red tape, denied claims and complexity also delay people from getting care or prevent it altogether, according to a new KFF survey.

At least half of respondents said they had trouble once or more last year with health care coverage, regardless of type, and nearly half said their problems were not resolved to their satisfaction.

Denials were less common from Medicare and Medicaid, but finding in-network providers was harder with Medicaid and marketplace coverage. Even so, most people (81%) gave their insurers "excellent" or "good" marks.


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Copyright 2023 Creators Syndicate Inc.




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