Go Red luncheon focuses on women, heart disease

Filed under: Health Care |

In an effort to educate Colorado Springs about the risk of heart disease in women, the American Heart Association is hosting its fourth annual Go Red for Women Education Day, presented by Memorial Health System.

The event and luncheon will be held Nov. 3. The goal is to provide women with the knowledge they need combat cancer, as well as to provide them with resources about protecting their health.

Go Red will feature health seminars from 9:30 a.m. to noon, with guest panels and speakers discussing heart disease. There also will be complimentary health screenings, educational displays and a silent auction.

At noon, there will be a heart-healthy luncheon featuring Jennifer Bushman, best known as the “Kitchen Coach.” Attendees also will hear stories about local women and their experiences with heart disease.

Proceeds from Go Red for Women Education Day benefit research, community and professional programs, and assist the American Heart Association in its mission to reduce disability and death from cardiovascular diseases and stroke.

Each year, heart disease claims the lives of nearly 500,000 women. More women die of heart disease than the next five causes of death combined — including all cancers.

Surveys show that most women are more afraid of breast cancer than of cardiovascular disease, even though one in 28 women die from breast cancer, while almost one in two die from cardiovascular disease.

Individual tickets and table sponsorships are available. For information, contact the American Heart Association office at 635-7688, or send an e-mail to christine.ferguson@heart.org.

Legislative Council approves eight health care bills

The Colorado Legislative Council has approved eight bills proposed by the bipartisan Health Care Task Force.

Rep. Jerry Frangas, the group’s chairman, said the committee will continue to work until the next legislative session starts on issues discovered during task force meetings that were not addressed in the proposed legislation.

The council approved the following:

  • Prescription drugs – the prescription drug consumer information and technical assistance program. This bill allows the creation of a program intended to prevent dangerous drug interactions, improve patient outcomes and lower the cost of prescriptions in the Medicaid program through consultation with pharmacists. The bill directs the Health Care Policy and Financing Committee to measure cost savings as a result of the program.
  • Substance abuse. Currently the Department of Regulatory Agencies is required to develop an electronic prescription drug monitoring program. This bill requires the program to be transferred and implemented by the Department of Public Health and Environment in order to expedite the program.
  • Rural health care issues — health care needs in rural areas. This bill seeks to address health care shortages and inadequacies through a variety of means, including an analysis of health insurance costs in the Pueblo area, the creation of a mobile cancer screening unit for rural areas, two grant programs that address equipment and community mental health needs and a rural nursing teacher recruitment program.
  • Provider compensation rates – measures to enhance the profession of advanced practice nursing. This proposed legislation seeks to equalize insurance reimbursement rates between physicians and advanced practice nurses who perform the same services because of the shortage of physicians in rural areas.
  • Access to health insurance — health insurance for children and working people. This bill attempts to address health insurance gaps through a systemic approach that meshes free market with cost effective government approaches. In order to address small business insurance needs, groups are allowed to shift clients with chronic conditions to Cover Colorado in order to provide a lower-cost insurance pool. These clients are then provided with a premium subsidy to equalize their Cover Colorado premium. This bill also directs the director of the division of insurance to work with industry to develop a product for pre-exiting conditions to mesh with Cover Colorado.
    Children and pregnant women are the concern of one aspect of this bill, which directs state and local government to utilize existing resources to increase enrollment in programs as necessary. It also incrementally expands CHP over the course of four years to enroll 44 percent of uninsured children and directs HCPF to seek a waiver to cover HPV vaccination and dental care for pregnant women under CHP.
  • Foster care children — extending Medicaid eligibility for persons who are in the foster care system. This bill allows children who emancipate from the foster care system to maintain Medicaid eligibility until they are 21.
  • Nurse staffing needs — nurse staffing levels in hospitals. This bill sets requirements for nurse staffing levels.
  • Telemedicine — the use of telemedicine to provide certain services by home care providers. This bill would direct hospitals to seek federal authorization for the reimbursement of several services through the use of telemedicine.

Amy Gillentine covers health care for the Colorado Springs Business Journal.