Governor Wolf Lauds New Prescription Drug Monitoring Program as Important Weapon in Fight Against Pennsylvania’s Opioid Crisis

first_img August 25, 2016 Governor Wolf Lauds New Prescription Drug Monitoring Program as Important Weapon in Fight Against Pennsylvania’s Opioid Crisis SHARE Email Facebook Twittercenter_img Human Services,  Press Release,  Public Health,  Results,  Substance Use Disorder Harrisburg, PA – Today, Governor Tom Wolf announced that Pennsylvania’s newly redesigned Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) is fully operational and will serve as an important tool to help curb the prescription opioid and heroin public health crisis in the commonwealth.“More than 3,500 Pennsylvanians died last year from drug overdose – that’s an astonishing ten deaths each day,” said Governor Wolf. “The PDMP allows prescribers and dispensers to query and report information regarding the number of opioids prescribed, and to whom. This program enables health care professionals to address potentially fatal drug abuse and provide improved and streamlined care to their patients.”Since the 1970s, Pennsylvania has had a prescription drug monitoring program, however it’s been run by the Attorney General’s Office and only available to law enforcement. The new program will be run by the Department of Health and will now be open to licensed health professionals.The PDMP online database allows prescribers and dispensers of controlled substances to monitor who is obtaining opioids, who prescriptions are being obtained from, and how often they are prescribed. This critical online tool will support clinicians in identifying patients who may be struggling from the disease of addiction and help connect them with treatment services.The new system will allow doctors to view patients’ medication histories and be better informed before issuing new prescriptions for controlled substances. Health care professionals will now be able to check if their patient recently had a prescription filled from other providers. The system will help physicians recognize potentially inappropriate medication use.“The Wolf Administration has launched the new PDMP to empower medical professionals to not only identify patients struggling with addictions, but to prevent substance abuse before it starts,” said Secretary of Health Dr. Karen Murphy. “Pennsylvania is in the grips of an opioid abuse crisis and the PDMP will help us work together to fight against addiction and reverse this deadly trend. The Department of Health is proud to oversee this outstanding program that will improve prescribing habits, combat abuse, protect patients and save lives.”By using the new PDMP system, health care professionals will play a key role in reducing opioid abuse and overdoses. Physicians, dentists and providers licensed to prescribe scheduled drugs are required by the law to register in the system.To learn more about the PA PDMP, register for the PDMP AWARxE, or view tutorial resources available about the new program, please visit www.doh.pa.gov/PDMP.Like Governor Tom Wolf on Facebook: Facebook.com/GovernorWolflast_img read more

‘Unholy’ situation forcing institutional investors to stick with equities – SSgA

first_imgNiall O’Leary, head of portfolio solutions at SSgA, said investors continued to be overweight and were looking over their shoulders for the market correction.“[Investors are] uncomfortable with their position but cannot find an alternative,” he said.“The majority expect a drawdown, so they are overweight, they are adding and they are nervous.“The pressure to meeting funding standards and investment objectives, and the lack of opportunities elsewhere, has created an unholy challenge.”However, 55% suggested equity markets continued to offer good value.The research, which canvassed 420 global institutional investors across 13 countries, showed that, despite expectations of a downturn in equity markets, 91% said their portfolios were able to weather a major market correction.Two-thirds thought diversification alone was enough to protect portfolios.Despite investors’ confidence in their own portfolios’ ability to withstand a correction, 45% of investors said other institutional investors were unprepared for volatility.Only 8% said recent market volatility had had a significant impact on their strategies and were looking to implement additional protections, as two-fifths said short-term volatility was the new norm and should be expected.Around 85% also implemented downside-protection strategies, with 53% choosing dynamic asset allocation – a percentage that rose to 63% when looking specifically at Europe.Investors were also looking at low-volatility and volatility-targeting strategies as downside protection.However, 54% of investors said the timing of downside strategies remained the biggest challenge to implementation due to concerns over losing too much upside from bull equity markets.“There is an expectation of downside strategies that you have a smoother journey but a lower long-term return, so the insurance you pay is never fully recouped on the upside of the market,” O’Leary said.He said investors also had concerns about the risk of downside strategies failing to perform and the cost of implementation.One-third of investors said they lacked sufficient knowledge to be comfortable with the strategies.“The risk of these downside strategies not fully working does exist and is more pronounced in some strategies over others, which is why investors haven’t just chosen one approach,” O’Leary said. Institutional investors are continuing to push into developed and emerging market equities due to funding pressure despite strong expectations of a market correction, research has shown.The data from State Street Global Advisors (SSgA) showed 63% of global institutional investors increased allocations to developed market equities despite 60% expecting a negative market correction of 10-20%.Some 44% said the market was overvalued with a correction overdue, but two-thirds said funding pressures were forcing increased allocations.More than 50% said they would like to reduce equity exposure if an alternative capable of producing a similar return were available, but funding requirements (53%) and pressure to meet objectives (58%) meant equities continued to be increased and used.last_img read more

ICC postpones T20 World Cup due to Covid-19 pandemic

first_imgTHE International Cricket Council (ICC) has finally postponed the 2020 men’s T20 World Cup, a decision made because of the uncertainty caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.The decision to put off the tournament, originally scheduled for October-November, was taken by the ICC Board on Monday. The board has also shifted the 2023 Men’s World Cup from the February-March window to October-November that year.The board ultimately agreed to windows for three men’s events, with T20 World Cups in October-November 2021 and October-November 2022. But one decision not yet made is in which order Australia and India will host the T20 World Cups. In the original rights cycle, India was scheduled to host the event in 2021, after this year’s event in Australia. The Women’s World Cup, in New Zealand in February next year, has not yet been postponed, the ICC saying that planning for the event continues “as scheduled”.Why has the ICC not named venues for the T20 World Cups for 2021 and 2022?This remains a point of contention between the BCCI and CA, and is one reason why it took as long as it did to postpone the tournament officially. In May Earl Eddings, the CA chairman, sent an email to the ICC’s Finance & Commercial Affairs Committee, in which he proposed that Australia and India swap hosting rights for the T20 World Cup, with Australia hosting the event in October-November 2021 and India a year later.Doing that, Eddings said, would financially help all members. If not, Eddings said it would be “detrimental to cricket” in case the “cancellation” of the World Cup in Australia this year was “replaced by award of” the tournament in October-November 2022.The BCCI is understood to have preferred hosting the 2021 T20 World Cup so it would not have to, potentially, host three marquee tournaments within a year: the T20 World Cup in 2022, the IPL in 2023 and the 50-over World Cup in 2023.“The… Board agreed to continue to monitor the rapidly changing situation and assess all the information available in order to make a considered decision on future hosts to ensure the sport is able to stage safe and successful global events in 2021 and 2022,” the ICC said in the release.It wasn’t mentioned in the release but the ICC is also hoping that the BCCI is able to resolve a long-standing tax-exemption issue with the Indian government, for which the deadline currently is December this year.Why has the 2023 World Cup been postponed?Both the ICC and its members, it is understood, wanted to buy some more time to be able to complete the qualifying events for the tournament. The ODI Super League, a qualification pathway for the event, was meant to start in May this year but has been put on hold as all international cricket came to a halt as the pandemic spread around the globe.What were CA’s concerns over hosting the T20 World Cup this year?The announcement of the postponement, ultimately, does not come as a surprise, not least because CA had said more than once that it was going to be difficult to host the tournament. Then chief executive Kevin Roberts had said in May that it was a “very high risk” to conduct the tournament, Eddings echoing that pessimism in June, saying it was “unlikely” and “unrealistic” when the pandemic was “spiking” worldwide.Australia has not been as badly hit by Covid-19 as other countries, with 3026 active cases as of Monday. But Melbourne and surrounding areas are currently back in lockdown and cases are rising in New South Wales amid concerns over a second wave. International borders, and quite a few state borders, remain closed other than for special cases.With participating countries such as England, India, South Africa and Pakistan among the most severely affected, the risks of bringing together 16 teams from around the world and creating a bio-secure bubble were seen as too high.The ICC Board has met several times since April to discuss contingency planning and was meant to make a final decision on the T20 World Cup during a meeting on June 10, but eventually deferred the call.last_img read more

2016 women’s basketball NCAA Tournament: Beat writers fill out their own brackets

first_img Facebook Twitter Google+ Comments With the 2016 NCAA tournament starting Thursday, beat writers Connor Grossman, Jon Mettus and Paul Schwedelson filled out their own brackets. Each of them is below, and feel free to critique their picks in the comments section. Happy March Madness.Connor Grossman’s bracketJon Mettus’ bracketAdvertisementThis is placeholder textPaul Schwedelson’s bracketcenter_img Published on March 16, 2016 at 12:59 pmlast_img

How Billionaire Manoj Bhargava Aims to Bring Light into Indian Lives

first_imgIndian American billionaire Manoj Bhargava is aiming to change the lives of millions of poor people in India through his latest innovations. The founder of the Billions In Change movement, who is known for his philanthropic initiatives, is spearheading research for production of utility products such as wireless electricity generators and fertilizer makers for rural areas.Bhargava’s team has come up with a solar-powered portable electricity generator that can be used to charge devices, run electrical gadgets and emit light. Called the Hans PowerPack, the 3.5 kg 300-watt portable unit is charged through a solar panel and includes a torch, a USB port, and a 12-volt outlet for running small devices. It can be charged through the regular electrical socket as well as with the Solar Briefcase introduced by Bhargava’s Hans Foundation. The briefcase, a lightweight, portable assembly of solar panels that charges the PowerPack in two to four hours.The technology, Bhargava believes, can change the life of people just the way mobile phones did. The PowerPack, which costs Rs 14,500 and comes with 12-year warranty, will soon start reaching out to citizens in the mountains of Uttarakhand, with the state government announcing on Oct.8 its commitment to get 100,000 units for villages. The state has more than 60 villages where electrification has not yet been done due to geographical challenges. About 98,000 families and 4,700 settlements in Uttarakhand are still not electrified.“By 2020, we aim to create a massive change across Uttarakhand in one of the nation’s most powerful village development programs,” Bhargava said in a statement, referring to the project undertaken by the Hans Foundation to work in the areas of disease prevention, children’s education and forest regeneration in the state. He has pledged Rs 500 crore to fund the program.Bhargava, the CEO of Innovations Ventures LLC that is known for producing the 5-hour Energy drink, was listed as one of the richest Indians in the United States by Forbes in 2012. The 63-year-old Princeton dropout pledged 99 per cent of his net worth to philanthropic endeavors in 2015.He has also working on ways to solve issues related to the availability of safe drinking water in Indian villages through the water-filtering Rainmaker machines developed by his organization. Also coming up is the Shivansh fertilizer method, which uses farm waste to generate low-cost nutrient-rich soil amendment. Related ItemsBillions in ChangeHans FoundationHans PowerPackLittle IndiaManoj BhargavaNRI philanthropistNRI UttarakhandShivansh fertilizerlast_img read more