Mary Guiden

State Health Officials Concerned About Vaccine Shortage

By: - June 11, 2001

On the surface, a nationwide tetanus and diphtheria vaccine shortage may not seem like such a big deal. How many people will step on a rusty nail this year? Doctors in states such as Wisconsin say the shortage is serious due to flooding in the state and related accidents, but in Kentucky, Oregon, Tennessee and […]

FTC Moves Forward on Rx Industry Probe

By: - June 4, 2001

As the states and U.S. government agencies increasingly scrutinize pharmaceutical manufacturers’ business practices, the Federal Trade Commission is stepping up a probe of alleged agreements that brand-name companies have made to either delay or stop the sale of generic drugs. The FTC has dedicated a “very substantial portion of resources” to a study of the […]

Nursing Profession Isn’t Diverse Enough, Study Finds

By: - May 22, 2001

As troubling as the nursing shortage is for the country, experts say the profession also has another problem — it isn’t diverse enough. According to researchers at the University of California’s Center for the Health Professions, nursing seriously lags in reflecting racial differences of the patients being served. The study’s findings come at a time […]

On the Record: Colorado Medicaid Chief Richard Allen

By: - May 15, 2001

Colorado’s Richard Allen has had a pretty tough year. Like most Medicaid directors, he’s had to cut numerous budget items to keep spending low. On top of that, the division he runs– the Department of Health Policy and Financing– was sued by several HMOs who claim they weren’t paid enough to care for people on […]

States, Women’s Groups Slow To Address Women’s Smoking

By: - May 3, 2001

New York’s Selma Rosen was eleven years old when she started smoking and “became addicted,” as she explains it. She smoked for 34 years and even quit for a stretch until she relapsed back into her habit. Now 57, Rosen is a lung cancer survivor, a condition that she says has changed her life dramatically. […]

New Research Rekindles Cigarette Tax Debate

By: - April 30, 2001

Remember that weekly allowance you had as a kid? With the spare change you got from a job or from your parents, you could buy the latest music, get some stylish new clothes or even go out to eat with your friends. Would you use the money to buy cigarettes? Maybe, if the price was […]

SPECIAL REPORT: States Mull Suit Against Drug Companies

By: - April 2, 2001

In an action modeled on their 1998 class action lawsuit against the tobacco industry, at least six states are poised to go to court to try to force pharmaceutical companies to lower prescription prices, law enforcement and health care officials tell “The goal is nothing less than changing the way the industry does business,” […]

On The Record: Drug Industry Lawyer Marjorie Powell

By: - March 27, 2001

In the current debate that pits states against the prescription drug industry, pharmaceutical firms look to some like a proverbial big bad wolf–they huff and they puff and they keep raising prices. In an interview with, Marjorie Powell, who serves as Assistant General Counsel for the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA), tells […]

Consumers Lack Understanding Of HMOs, Survey Finds

By: - March 21, 2001

A majority of states allow women in health maintenance organizations–or HMOs–direct access to an OB/GYN, provide consumers with an independent appeals process and have bans on gag clauses. What does all that mean? If you’re not sure, you’re not alone. A mere 30 percent of almost 11,000 consumers correctly identified four basic managed care features, […]

On The Record: Maine Human Services Chief Kevin Concannon

By: - March 16, 2001

Maine may not seem to have a whole lot of political muscle, given its small population and remote location. But in getting a grip on skyrocketing prescription drug costs, it has become a modern-day Hercules. Maine has put in place programs such as its Physician Directed Drug Initiative, which encourages doctors to use lower cost […]

Appeals Court To Rule on Maine Rx Program

By: - March 6, 2001

In the latest round of legal sparring between prescription drug makers and state officials, Maine was back in the courtroom Monday in the First Circuit Court of Appeals in Boston, fighting to keep a new prescription drug program alive. In the opposite corner, the Pharmaceutical Research and Manufacturers of America (PhRMA) maintained that the state’s […]

Governors Give Thumbs Up to Medicaid Reform

By: - February 28, 2001

The National Governors Association (NGA) on February 27 approved a groundbreaking Medicaid reform policy that may alter a program that’s been in place since 1965. Forty-eight governors reached a clear consensus on the proposal while in Washington, D.C. at the association’s winter meeting. Similar to what governors did with welfare reform–implementing versions long before federal […]