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Fidel Castro’s eldest son ‘Fidelito’ commits suicide after battling deep depression

Fidel Castro’s eldest son ‘Fidelito’ commits suicide after battling deep depression “I think that a man should not live beyond the age when he begins to deteriorate, when the flame that lighted the brightest moment of his life has weakened.” These words from late Cuban revolutionary leader Fidel Castro possibly came true in the case of his own son, although in a tragic way. Cuban state-run media reported that Fidel Castro Diaz-Balart, Castro’s eldest son, committed suicide on Feb. 1, 2018 after having undergone treatment for depression for several months. While Castro Diaz-Balart was initially hospitalized for his treatment, he later continued it as an outpatient. He was reportedly being attended…

Texas mandates prescription-monitoring tools effective Sep. 2019 to fight opioid epidemic

Texas mandates prescription-monitoring tools effective Sep. 2019 to fight opioid epidemic In the United States, prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs) are among the most promising state-level interventions to improve current levels of prescriptions of opioids, provide data for effective clinical decisions, and protect at-risk patients. Although past studies have found varying success rates for PDMPs, these continue contributing to the overall decline in drug diversions and prescription opioid overdoses. The Texas Prescription Monitoring Program (TPMP) was created over three decades ago, but it has so far been used by limited health care providers. Effective Sep. 1, 2016, the program was taken over by the Texas State Board of Pharmacy (TSBP). This…

Titus Young on living with bipolar disorder

January 31, 2018 Mental Health

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Titus Young on living with bipolar disorder “Hearing voices is no joke, it’s actually very scary. I feel like someone is trying to come kill me.” This is an excerpt from the diary of ex-football player Titus Young, who was diagnosed with bipolar disorder, sent to prison due to “altercations and worrisome behavior”, and was subsequently taken away from the game he has loved all his life. Despite all odds, Young still believes that he could play the National Football League (NFL). Picked by the Detroit Lions in the second round of NFL Draft in 2011, the former NFL and Boise State Wide receiver Young has been…

Mental health problems among girls and young women go beyond social media and body image

Mental health problems among girls and young women go beyond social media and body image Most discussions regarding mental health concerns among girls and young women tend to focus on problematic social media use, body image issues and school-related problems. Although these are common issues affecting the mental health of this section of the population, the risk of other issues cannot be overlooked. Some of the defining moments of 2017 involved the countless stories of sexual abuse/assault and the #MeToo movement. Women who survived incidents of sexual abuse were considered the hidden face of post traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). Sexual harassment is not restricted to the workplace or the community/society – increasing instances of sexual…

Third-party premium payments: A blessing in disguise

January 30, 2018 Addiction, Treatment

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Third-party premium payments: A blessing in disguise A health insurance plan plays a crucial role in saving lives. As such, both public and private insurance plans are readily available. However, how to get secure coverage is a different story altogether, particularly for addiction treatment. Between 2000 and 2014, the rate of death caused by drug overdose increased sharply – 137 percent – in the United States. The situation only seems to be worsening with the drug overdose claiming over 64,000 lives in 2016 compared to more than 52,400 in 2015 and over 47,000 in 2014. To tackle the growing heroin and opioid epidemic, dozens of new rehabilitation…

Dealing with eating disorders in LGBT community

January 29, 2018 Eating Disorders

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Dealing with eating disorders in LGBT community Since time immemorial, eating disorders are associated with young, straight and white women’s disorders but little is known that these disorders can strike anyone, irrespective of gender, ethnicity, demographics, age, economic background and culture. In fact, a large section of the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) community is also affected by this disorder, even though extensive research is necessitated to establish links between an individual’s gender, sexuality, eating disorders and body image. Research indicates that “beginning as early as 12, gay, lesbian and bisexual teens may be at higher risk of binge-eating and purging than heterosexual peers.” Gay and…

Pennsylvania lawmaker Justin Simmons reveals long battle with OCD

Pennsylvania lawmaker Justin Simmons reveals long battle with OCD Pennsylvania state Representative Justin Simmons, who dropped out of congressional race in November 2017, recently talked about his struggles with mental illness. Overcoming all hurdles, including stigma associated with mental conditions, Simmons posted a video on his campaign’s Facebook page, talking in detail about obsessive compulsive disorder (OCD) he has been suffering from since childhood. Simmons confessed that it was not the easiest thing for him to talk about as it was an illness not understood by most people. Simmons, 31, took the bold step, saying that his coming forward would bring awareness about the mental condition and help someone…

WellStar Health System and Pacira Pharmaceuticals to jointly develop comprehensive opioid minimization strategy

WellStar Health System and Pacira Pharmaceuticals to jointly develop comprehensive opioid minimization strategy The opioid epidemic ravaging across the United States is necessitating innovative risk management strategies to improve patient safety and reduce higher health care utilization costs. Although several players are involved in such strategies, pharmaceutical companies and health care providers have a critical role to play. Doing their bit to help control the epidemic, in January 2018, WellStar Health System (WellStar), the largest health system in Georgia, and Pacira Pharmaceuticals (Pacira), announced a partnership to develop a comprehensive strategy for minimizing opioid use and standardizing outcomes across surgical procedures. According to the strategic plan, WellStar and Pacira will work jointly in…

New app “Happy” seeks to provide emotional support to people with mental disorders

January 19, 2018 Mental Health

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New app “Happy” seeks to provide emotional support to people with mental disorders The last few years have seen an emergence of digital health technologies (DHTs) which have been developed for individuals with mental illnesses. Of these DHTs, smartphone apps constitute the largest share. A body of past research indicated high levels of usability and effectiveness of such apps. It was observed that users were generally engaged with these technologies and used them for monitoring their health and symptoms. For patients with mental disorders, receiving emotional comfort and support is among the most vital aspect in the treatment of their conditions. Traditional sources of emotional support – family, friends and even psychiatrists –…

4 years after student’s hazing death, fraternity banned for 10 years in Pennsylvania

4 years after student’s hazing death, fraternity banned for 10 years in Pennsylvania The dangers associated with fraternity activities assumed serious proportions in 2017 with a string of hazing-related deaths. The tragic incidents prompted calls for bringing serious charges against accused students and getting rid of fraternities completely. The year 2017 was not an isolated year for such incidents. In December 2013, Chun Hsien “Michael” Deng died from a traumatic brain injury suffered during a hazing ritual called “glass ceiling” while pledging the Pi Delta Psi fraternity. Deng was a student of Baruch College, part of the City University of New York (CUNY). On Jan. 8, 2018, four years after Deng’s death, a…
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