News and Updates for Healthcare Professionals

Study funded by NIH supports optimal threshold for diagnosing COPD

Approximately 16 million Americans have COPD.

[ Full article ]

NIH-funded trial finds vitamin D does not prevent type 2 diabetes in people at high risk

Study is largest to examine daily supplementation.

[ Full article ]

NIH funds clinical trials using genomics to treat chronic diseases

The National Institutes of Health will fund clinical trials to assess the benefits, applicability and efficacy of applying genomic medicine interventions to improve management of diseases such as high blood pressure, depression and chronic pain. The trials are part of the second phase of the Implementing Genomics in Practice (IGNITE) Network with a total investment of $42 million over five years, pending the availability of funds. The trials will begin in 2020.

[ Full article ]

ADA updates its “living" guidelines based on CREDENCE trial


  • The American Diabetes Association (ADA) has updated 2 sections in its online “Living” Standards of Medical Care, based on the recently reported Canagliflozin and Renal Outcomes in Type 2 Diabetes and Nephropathy (CREDENCE) trial results.

Renal Management Guidelines Update

  • Section 11, on Microvascular Complications and Foot Care, now includes the following recommendations (graded A, B, C):
    • 11.1 At least once yearly, assess urinary albumin (e.g., spot urinary albumin-to-creatinine ratio) and estimated glomerular filtration rate (eGFR) in patients with type 1 diabetes with duration of ?5 years, in all patients with type 2 diabetes (T2D), regardless of treatment, and in all patients with comorbid hypertension. B
    • 11.3 For patients with T2D and diabetic kidney disease, consider use of a sodium-glucose cotransporter 2 inhibitor in patients with eGFR ?30, particularly in those with >300 mg/g albuminuria to reduce risk of chronic kidney disease (CKD) progression, cardiovascular events, or both. A
    • 11.3 In patients with CKD at increased risk for cardiovascular events, use of a glucagon-like peptide-1 receptor agonist may reduce risk of progression of albuminuria, cardiovascular events, or both. C
  • Section 10, Cardiovascular Disease and Risk Management:
    • Now includes information about CREDENCE and CANVAS.
    • Section was endorsed by the American College of Cardiology.

[ Full article ]

FDA identifies harm reported from sudden discontinuation of opioid pain medicines and requires label changes to guide prescribers on gradual, individualized tapering

[4-9-2019] The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has received reports of serious harm in patients who are physically dependent on opioid pain medicines suddenly having these medicines discontinued or the dose rapidly decreased. These include serious withdrawal symptoms, uncontrolled pain, psychological distress, and suicide.

While we continue to track this safety concern as part of our ongoing monitoring of risks associated with opioid pain medicines, we are requiring changes to the prescribing information for these medicines that are intended for use in the outpatient setting. These changes will provide expanded guidance to health care professionals on how to safely decrease the dose in patients who are physically dependent on opioid pain medicines when the dose is to be decreased or the medicine is to be discontinued.

[ Full article ]

Update on Interventions to Prevent Opioid Use Disorder

The USPSTF is deeply committed to addressing the opioid epidemic by promoting primary care strategies to prevent opioid misuse and opioid use disorder. After careful consideration of public feedback on this issue, the USPSTF has determined that it can best help address the opioid epidemic by identifying what new research is most needed on primary care strategies for preventing opioid misuse and opioid use disorders. 

The USPSTF has recommendations related to opioid use including screening for use of illicit drugs and misuse of prescription drugs and interventions to prevent drug use in adolescents and young adults.

CMS Modernizes Care for Frail, Elderly Individuals Enrolled in PACE

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) finalized a rule today to update and modernize requirements for the Programs of All-Inclusive Care for the Elderly (PACE). The PACE program provides comprehensive medical and social services to certain frail, elderly individuals who qualify for nursing home care but, at the time of enrollment, can still live safely in the community. The policies finalized in this rule reflect the latest standards in caring for PACE participants – many of whom are “dually eligible” for both Medicare and Medicaid – and will strengthen patient protections, improve care coordination, and provide administrative flexibilities and regulatory relief for PACE organizations.

[ Full article ]

Project to deter opioid tampering wins top Addiction Science Award

NIDA announces awardees at the 2019 Intel International Science and Engineering Fair.

[ Full article ]

Advancing Patient-Centered Care For People with Multiple Chronic Conditions

AHRQ’s commitment to improving care for the nearly one of three American adults living with multiple chronic conditions (MCC) is the subject of a new blog post by Arlene S. Bierman, M.D., M.S., director of AHRQ’s Center for Evidence and Practice Improvement, and Gopal Khanna, M.B.A., director of AHRQ. Central to AHRQ’s efforts will be research investments that identify areas of unmet need and explore treatment models that are less disease-specific and emphasize whole-person care. In a previous post, Director Khanna identified improving care for people with MCC as one of three urgent challenges that will guide the Agency’s future activities. Future blog posts will outline the Agency’s two additional areas of emphasis: establishing a data and analytics platform to support healthcare decision making, and using evidence-based strategies to reduce diagnostic errors.

[ Full article ]

Food, beverage companies commit to WHO trans fat elimination goal

Trans fat intake is responsible for over 500,000 deaths from coronary heart disease each year globally. WHO welcomes the commitment by the International Food and Beverage Alliance (IFBA) to align with the WHO target to eliminate industrially produced trans fat from the global food supply by 2023.

WHO Director-General Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus met with IFBA representatives to discuss actions to take to eliminate industrial trans fats, and reduce salt, sugar and saturated fats in processed foods.

"Eliminating industrially-produced trans fat is one of the simplest and most effective ways to save lives and create a healthier food supply,” said Dr Tedros.

[ Full article ]