Blair Horner: The Case for Expanding Medicaid

Dec 3, 2012

A new report issued by the Kaiser Family Foundation and the Urban Institute – two health care think tanks—described the benefits to states which choose to expand Medicaid coverage as allowed under the federal health care reform law, the Affordable Care Act.  The report found that states will receive more than $9 in federal money for every $1 they spend to cover low-income residents.

That’s right: a $9 to $1 ratio.

On this edition of Medical Monday on Vox Pop we’ll take your questions on cancer detection and medical thermal imaging with Dr. Anthony Piana, co-founder and director of Breast Thermography International.

A graduate of Palmer College of Chiropractic, Dr. Piana formed BTI in 2008 to educate doctors on the scientific principles of thermology and to train technicians to properly perform exams.

Blair Horner: The Great American Smokeout

Nov 19, 2012

The nation just celebrated its 37th annual “Great American Smokeout.”  The Great American Smokeout has been offered as an opportunity for smokers to think about quitting and as an opportunity to reflect on society’s gains against the tobacco menace.

And big changes have occurred over the decades.  Nationally, the smoking rate peaked at 42 percent when the U.S. Surgeon General’s report was issued and proved the link between smoking and cancer.  Today the nation’s smoking rate is 19 percent, and here in New York that rate is even lower.

Susan Cummings’s surgeon proclaimed to her a few weeks after her mastectomy, “You’re cured now, that’s it.” But, that wasn’t it by a long shot for Cummings, who has just written a memoir about her first six years after treatment for early-stage breast cancer.

She writes about being a struggling New York actress and wrangles with her fear of more cancer and shame of her altered body.

The Lung Cancer Alliance NY in partnership with Albany Medical Center are sponsoring a Shine a Light on Lung Cancer Vigil on Tuesday, November 13th at 6:00 pm.  

Blair Horner: Help to discover new cancer treatments

Oct 15, 2012

For many of us, our civic participation begins and ends with voting.  Though voting is crucial to the health of our democracy, few of us have the opportunity to take part in something that can really change the lives of people all around the world.

One of those rare opportunities has just come our way.

The White House today released a report on the impact of mandated budget cuts scheduled to go into effect on January 1, 2013.  The cuts are mandated under the Budget Control Act of 2011, which arose for the debate over the debt ceiling last year. 

The Budget Control Act required an automatic $1.2 trillion in cuts if the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction (also known as the “Super Committee”) failed to agree on budget cuts on its own – which it failed to do.

Last week, New York’s law on indoor tanning went into effect.  The law prohibits all those 16 years old and younger from using indoor tanning beds or booths.  The logic of the ban has become more compelling.

The prestigious British Medical Journal published the latest research on the impact of indoor tanning.  It concluded that indoor tanning is “associated with a significant increase in risk of melanoma. This risk increases with number of sunbed sessions and with initial usage at a young age” (those under the age of 35 years).  The report also found:

New York receives a decent, but mixed, review for its legislative work to combat cancer, according to a new report,  How Do You Measure up?: A Progress Report on State Legislative Activity to Reduce Cancer Incidence and Mortality ( issued by the American Cancer Society’s Cancer Action Network.