Health and Medical News and Resources

General interest items edited by Janice Flahiff

FDA Substance Registration System

This database provides access to the FDA Unique Ingredient Identifier (UNII) assigned to substances by the FDA Substance Registration System.

Substances (nearly 17,000 include the following types:  (simple) chemical, protein, nucleic acid, (polydisperse) polymer, or structurally diverse.

The UNII may prove useful in searching many US govt databases, especially when common or generic terms yield poor results.

August 21, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , | Leave a comment

Visualize U.S. Health Data with Health Maps

This new Bing Map application will allow you to overlay health data onto Bing Maps so you can better understand and visualize the health of a community. Access the Bing Health Maps

Categories of Data Include:

+ Birth Measures (Low Birth Weight, Premature Births, etc.
+ Death Measures (Homicide, Lung Cancer, etc.)
+ Health Risk Factors (Smoker, Diabetes, etc.)

Data sources: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS)
Institute of Medicine

The Google Health Map is similar and may be found here.

August 21, 2010 Posted by | Uncategorized | Leave a comment

U.S. tries to fix slow response to outbreaks

“The U.S. government proposed major changes on Thursday to the way it works with companies to fight new disease threats such as flu, including reform at the Food and Drug Administration and setting up centers to make vaccines quickly.”

The HHS news release may be found here.

The full report (along with a fact sheet and other related material) may be found here.

August 21, 2010 Posted by | Health News Items | , , , | Leave a comment

Questions About the Temporary High-Risk Pool

The Kaiser Foundation has recently published an online one page summary providing responses to basic questions about the temporary high risk pool.

Short factual answers address eligibility, benefits, costs, and effective dates.

For more information about the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, see the summary of the new health reform law at For more information about current state high-risk pools see “State High-Risk Pools: An Overview” at For more information about Secretary Sebelius’ April 2nd letter see

Some additional “Health Care Reform Law”informational sites

  • Health Insurance  Health Topic Page (National Library of Medicine)
    Includes links to overviews, news items, specific conditions, law & policy, and much more
  • Frequently Asked Questions about the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) Nondiscrimination Requirements(Dept. of Labor)
  • State Health Insurance Counseling and Assistance Program (SHIPs)(Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services)
  • State Insurance Departments Web Sites(National Association of Insurance Commissioners)
  • August 21, 2010 Posted by | Health News Items | | Leave a comment


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