Health & Wellness

Health news

Improvements reported at Buffalo VA Hospital

Dec 22, 2016
WBFO File Photo

Local veterans may be encouraged with some recent news. The Buffalo VA Medical Center has made a "large improvement" in overall quality.


Medtronic

A 67-year old Ontario County man is one of the first local residents to have the world's smallest pacemaker implanted in his heart.

U.S. Food and Drug Administration

U.S. Sen. Charles Schumer is turning up the heat on the federal government to consider recalling e-cigarette batteries and devices that explode and catch fire, injuring users.

NYS health exchange extends enrollment deadline

Dec 16, 2016
New York State

New Yorkers now have an extra two days to sign up for health insurance in time for a January 1 start date.

WBFO News photo by Eileen Buckley

On Wednesday the big weather incident was the lake effect snow. One day after, it's the severe cold that has arrived in the region. It is a bitter cold, warns Erie County Health Commissioner Dr. Gale Burstein, that may prove dangerous to one's health and safety in very short time if not properly covered.  


Chris Caya / WBFO News

A historic boost in cancer research funding is available across the country, thanks to the 21st Century Cures Act. Western New York’s household name in fighting the disease is ready to compete for new dollars.

Quest Diagnostics

Quest Diagnostics is investigating another hacking into its network of protected health information, this time affecting some 34,000 patients who have bloodwork conducted through the company.

More Medicaid coverage for transgender services

Dec 12, 2016

Increased  coverage for transgender medical care and services are taking effect for Medicaid plans in New York. The Department of Health has established that young people, under the age of 18, will now receive coverage for hormone therapy deemed medically necessary, according to the notice filed in the NYS Register.

Michael Mroziak, WBFO

On Tuesday, President Barack Obama is expected to sign the 21st Century Cures Act into law. Two local congressmen, one from each major political party, stood together with representatives of numerous health and patient interests to celebrate the act's passage.


New York state is making more changes to its medical marijuana program.

President-elect Donald Trump has promised to repeal the Affordable Health Care Act — also known as Obamacare — and replace it with something else. While no one really knows what that means, one health care analyst with a prominent Albany think tank said New York could be billions of dollars in the hole as a result.


Chris Caya/WBFO News

It’s not every day that a hospital relocates to a new spot, but that’s what is happening at Women & Children’s Hospital. The hospital will move from its current location on Bryant Street to the Buffalo Niagara Medical Campus in several stages beginning on January 3.

Kenmore Mercy earns Top Hospital award

Dec 8, 2016
Catholic Health System

Kenmore Mercy Hospital has earned the Leapfrog Group's Top Hospital Award and was the only hospital in New York State to make this year's list of 115.

Taylor Mann / CleanSlate UV

When the cell phone you hold in your hand and press against your face is at least six times dirtier than the average toilet seat, it begs the question: Is it safe to use in a hospital? The answer: Not so much. A winner of New York’s 43North competition is out to change that, and they’re finding more uses for their product than originally planned.


courtesy Erie County Medicaid Inspector General

Nearly a third of Erie County residents are on Medicaid and the number is rising at an average 4 percent annually, according to the latest numbers from the County's Medicaid Inspector General. The report also shows numbers that contradict what the Inspector General says are some of the misconceptions about Medicaid and who is using it.


Hospitals have long been reluctant to share with patients their assessments of which nursing homes are best because of a Medicare requirement that patients' choices can't be restricted.

For years, many hospitals simply have given patients a list of all the skilled nursing facilities near where they live and told them which ones have room for a new patient. Patients have rarely been told which homes have poor quality ratings from Medicare or a history of public health violations, according to researchers and patient advocates.

Patrick Koster

Douglas Hahn was diagnosed with depression when he was 9 years old. In subsequent years, he isolated himself from others until he was almost finished with high school. He was in and out of facilities during a difficult era.

File photo

Thanksgiving dinner is one of the biggest meals people cook each year. With it come challenges in preparing the food.

NYS urging more breastfeeding initiatives

Nov 22, 2016

The New York State Department of Health continues to push for breastfeeding initiatives. On Monday, the department announced it will allocate more than $7 million toward promoting breastfeeding. 

New York State

Federal auditors say New York improperly used as much as $150 million in grants to set up its insurance exchange under President Barack Obama's health care law and enroll people for coverage.

Buffalo water quality testing one-third complete

Nov 16, 2016

The City of Buffalo says testing of water sources in common use areas of the City’s 27 community centers, prioritized by where young children attend daycare and spend time after school and on weekends, is nearing completion, while the analysis for lead and copper at more than 150 city-owned buildings by the end of the year is on track.

Tom Magnarelli / WRVO News

While New York would not be as greatly affected as other states if the Affordable Care Act is repealed, there could be some changes to the health exchange. Republicans, controlling the House, Senate and soon the presidency are now positioned to repeal President Obama’s healthcare law.

Gretchen Ertl/Reuters/Landov

There has been a recall of one of the key weapons in the fight against fatal opioid abuse overdoses -- naloxone.

Many diabetics ignoring basic health recommendations

Nov 8, 2016

New data collected by Excellus BlueCross BlueShield suggests many people with diabetes admit they are not taking the basic steps to keep their chronic illness in check.

A new survey finds that nearly three-quarters of adults in Buffalo believe opioids addiction is one of today's highest social priorities, but there are not enough community resources to tackle the problem. That is why a local health provider, that began in response to the AIDS crisis of a generation ago, has been expanding into opioids addiction and other chronic diseases that are underserved and stigmatized.

Kaleida Health

With the opening of the new John R. Oishei Children's Hospital a year away, there are still big parts of the project in the works. Kaleida Health is jumping through the last hoops to put a helicopter pad on top of the complex.

Open enrollment is here. Now what?

Nov 2, 2016
Karen Shakerdge / WXXI News

You may have heard a few different numbers regarding insurance costs rising for 2017. Not all states have the same rate increases. In New York, plans are going up an average of 17 percent.

Not sure what these changes in premium costs mean for you? Or what you need to do if you're already on a health plan through the exchange? Wondering if you need to bother with the exchange if you get health insurance through your employer? 

WXXI's Karen Shakerdge sat down with Lisa Ball, staff attorney at Legal Assistance of Western New York, specializing in health, to learn more.

Avery Schneider / WBFO News

The City of Buffalo is continuing to take proactive steps in the fight against lead poisoning with its new “Wipe Out Lead” campaign.

Mobile mammograms at City Hall

Oct 28, 2016
WBFO's Eileen Buckley / File Photo

If you are a woman age 40 or over who is due for your regular mammogram or have never had a mammogram, you may want to check out the mobile breast health coach outside Buffalo City Hall until 5 p.m.

UB researchers to track flu season via smartphone survey

Oct 28, 2016
Michael Mroziak, WBFO

Tracking the spread of flu in Western New York? There's an app for that! University at Buffalo researchers are seeking individuals who will participate in a smartphone project that will track how the flu spreads this season.


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