Skip to main content


Novel Drug Shows Potential to Repair Stroke Damage

(NewsUSA) - A unique injectable drug shows promising potential to reduce some of the early brain damage caused by stroke, based on a newly published study using animal models. In other words, human victims of stroke might someday be able to regain or improve bodily functions, including key cognitive abilities.     

Approximately one of every 19 deaths in the United States in 2019 was due to stroke, according to the American Heart Association. The only current FDA-approved drug for treatment of stroke does not repair damage and must be administered within 4.5 hours of stroke onset. When a stroke happens, lack of blood flow to the brain causes the deaths of millions of neurons. Individuals who survive any type of stroke are at an increased risk for debilitating loss of function in areas of speech and language, as well as difficulty with overall motor coordination, walking and cognitive function.     

The new drug, currently known as NVG-291-R, is designed to help repair damage caused to the neurons in the brain after a stroke. Researchers at the University of Cincinnati tested the drug by inducing strokes in mice. They found that the drug not only created new neuronal connections but also enhanced movement of stem cells to the area of the brain damaged by a stroke.     

The results were encouraging, according to the researchers.     

“There was significant improvement in motor and sensory function in the mice -- essentially the ability to walk, grasp objects and detect the presences of objects on their paws.  Additionally, there was an improvement in spatial learning and memory,” they said in a press release.     

Another encouraging finding was that the drug was similarly effective when given up to seven days after the stroke occurred. Most other treatments in development for stroke damage must be administered within 24 to 48 hours of a stroke to be effective, the researchers noted.       

The drug was developed by NervGen, a biotech company focused on treatments to promote nervous system repair.     “The current standard of care for stroke is one approved drug administered to less than 10% of those suffering, and it only works by limiting ongoing damage in those receiving it,” says NervGen’s  CEO, Paul Brennan.     

“If the meaningful recovery of function shown in this study translates in a clinical setting, our drug will redefine stroke therapy.”     

The study findings were published in the medical journal Cell Reports.       

Visit for more information about evolving treatments for nervous system damage from injury or disease.

COVID Vaccination Campaign Reaches Out to Rural Communities

(NewsUSA) - Despite the documented success of the various COVID-19 vaccines in preventing serious illness and death across a range of ages, many people in the United States, especially in rural communities, remain hesitant to getting vaccinated.     

However, a new public service announcement focusing on love, respect, and humility is making inroads to encourage COVID-19 vaccination in rural communities. The GreenShoots Foundation, a nonpartisan organization dedicated to uplifting people across the social fabric of America, was launched in 2021 by Arkansas native and NYC-based financial services veteran Ted Huffman and his wife, Cheryl Huffman.     

The foundation’s inaugural project is a COVID-19 vaccine awareness campaign focused on rural communities. The “Please Consider Vaccination” campaign includes outreach on radio, TV, digital media, and social media.     

In the campaign’s signature video, a father in a rural community, travels from his farm to a church and then a school, where he sees children safely crossing the street under the supervision of a crossing guard. In the next shot, the father arrives at a local vaccination clinic and says, “Let’s do this.”     

The campaign was first launched in communities in Arkansas in November 2021 but has proven so successful that it has appeared in areas of Mississippi, Tennessee, Missouri, Oklahoma, Montana, Maryland, Wisconsin, Idaho, West Virginia, Ohio, South Carolina, Alaska, Michigan, Wyoming, Illinois, Tennessee, Utah, and Kentucky.     

In the three months after the release of the PSA campaign, Pulaski County, which contains Little Rock, Arkansas’s capital and largest city, saw an increase of 9% over similar markets in neighboring Mississippi without access to the PSA campaign. In fact, the areas without access to the campaign saw a drop in vaccination rates among the unvaccinated population during the same time period.     

“When you look at the success of this campaign, I believe it comes down to the representation of core human desires and needs, which are universal and apolitical, such as respect, health, and safety,” concludes Ted Huffman. ”We hope the word will continue to spread and encourage even more people to consider vaccination.”     

Looking ahead, the goals of The GreenShoots Foundation include shelter for the homeless, U.S. military veteran advocacy, and increased participation in the exercise of self-government.     View the video, titled “Life. Your Journey. Your Choice” at:     

For more information about the GreenShoots Foundation, visit

Five Tips You Need to Know about Prescription Home Delivery

(NewsUSA) -  

By Scott Greenwell, PharmD,
Humana Pharmacy Solutions

Did you know you may have the option to have medications mailed directly to your home? If you ask your health care provider about prescription home delivery through a mail order pharmacy, they can send your script to the mail order pharmacy that is in-network with your health plan, and your medications will arrive at your home, safely and securely. If your plan has a preferred cost-share mail order pharmacy, then you may even save money on certain prescriptions.     

Consider the following tips to ensure you get the most out of prescription home delivery:     

• Get a 90-Day Supply: Many medications will allow for a 90-day supply, resulting in fewer refills and may result in cost savings for you.     

• Sign-up for Auto Refill: Many pharmacies, such as CenterWell Pharmacy (formerly known as Humana Pharmacy), will automatically deliver your next refill right to your door! If auto refill is not for you, sign up for emails, calls or text message alerts so you’ll receive a notification when it’s time for a refill.     

• Compare the Costs: Check to see if your plan offers a service which suggests alternative medications at lower costs.     

• Build a Personalized Medication List: Seeing multiple doctors usually means having several medications. Leverage your pharmacy or plan’s app or website to maintain a single, complete list of all your prescriptions to help avoid adverse reactions.     

• Ask About Additional Support: If you have a chronic condition, a specialty pharmacy can provide personalized resources. For example, CenterWell Specialty Pharmacy (formerly Humana Specialty Pharmacy) offers cancer patients the Cancer Center of Excellence -- a dedicated team of specialty pharmacists who can help answer questions, remove barriers to care, collaborate with health care teams on unique treatment plans and more -- while also delivering medications safely and securely to your home.   

With people in their 60s taking an average of 15 prescription drugs a year, prescription home delivery by mail can be beneficial for seniors. If you’re enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan that offers prescription drug coverage, like most Humana Medicare Advantage plans, or a Part D Plan, check to see whether the plan includes prescription mail order delivery pharmacies in the network.     

For more information about plans that include prescription mail order delivery pharmacies in their networks, you can call 1-800-MEDICARE (800-633-4227), 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, or go to     

To learn about Humana’s Medicare Advantage plans, visit or call 1-800-213-5286 (TTY: 711) to speak with a licensed sales agent from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. local time, seven days a week. Additional Information: Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, HMO SNP, PPO, PPO SNP and PFFS organization and a stand-alone PDP prescription drug plan with a Medicare contract. Enrollment in any Humana plan depends on contract renewal.

Scott Greenwell, PharmD., is President of Humana Pharmacy Solutions, where he oversees the health plan’s pharmacy solutions. He is based in Louisville, KY. Y0040_GCHLPSGEN_M

The Newest Diagnostic Exam Aging Adults Can’t Miss: The Elderoscopy

(NewsUSA) - Mammograms. Colonoscopies. Dental Cleanings. There are many diagnostic exams that we may not enjoy; however, we follow the prescribed regimen for our health and well-being. Health experts are encouraging families and older adults to take the same approach to a newly recommended examination that many adults are avoiding: the Elderoscopy.   

 An Elderoscopy is an important assessment that examines living and financial issues, health, relationships, driving and end-of-life plans. Older adults and their loved ones may avoid conversations about taboo aging topics because they fear the subject is too uncomfortable or sensitive. In fact, research from Home Instead, Inc. and The Marist College Poll shows that nearly 1 in 6 Americans would rather have a colonoscopy than discuss end-of-life plans with their loved ones.     

“It can be difficult, especially for adult children, to accept that their loved ones are getting older,” says Lakelyn Hogan Eichenberger, Ph.D., gerontologist and caregiving advocate at Home Instead.     

“But it’s important that families don’t wait until there is an emergency to put plans in place. With proper preparation, families can alleviate stress and the uneasiness that may arise when planning for the future.”     

Many families prioritize conversations about their wills and other plans for after death.     

Just as important, an Elderoscopy conversation is about living. It is about understanding older loved ones’ wishes and empowering them to live life to the fullest and age with dignity and respect. Hogan Eichenberger recommends the following tips when starting these discussions:       

Keep an open mind: Certain topics, such as how and when to stop driving or where to live, may evoke an emotional reaction. Try to put yourself in an older adult’s position, and seek to understand by listening to their concerns. Be mindful not to get offended by what you hear.     

Don’t dwell on uncomfortable discussions. Unless there is a time constraint, it may be best to return to a certain topic that is causing angst at a later time. Recognize that this is an ongoing discussion and that wishes should be revisited periodically. Ultimately, developing plans for aging should bring a sense of calm and assurance to all parties involved, knowing that the wishes of a loved one are understood.     

Express your own wishes. It may be easier for an older adult to talk through what they desire for their final years if the conversation feels like a two-way street. Discuss how you envision aging when posing questions to your loved ones.     

Bring conversation starters. Photos and family heirlooms can open the door to a conversation about aging plans and alleviate some of the pressure of having sensitive conversations. Older adults may enjoy reminiscing about the past while they talk about what’s next.     

While older adults may plan carefully for the financial aspects of retirement and what they will do with their free time, many often fall short of planning ahead for their later years. To help guide families in talking with older loved ones, Home Instead developed Elderoscopy. The program includes tools for families to initiate conversations around aging and identify their current planning needs.       

While an Elderoscopy is not an official medical procedure, it is a critical step in the aging process. For more information on personalized care provided by local Home Instead offices and resources for conversations about final wishes, visit:

Stay Smart When Using OTC Pain Medicines

(NewsUSA) - In the wake of the ongoing pandemic, a majority of Americans report pain, but most are smart about safety when it comes to pain relief, including products with acetaminophen, a common active ingredient in many over-the-counter (OTC) pain relievers.     

Approximately two-thirds of American adults report ongoing pain in 2022, up 12 percent since 2019, according to results of a new survey conducted by the Consumer Healthcare Products Association (CHPA) Educational Foundation.     

Nearly 80 percent of the survey respondents report that their usage of OTC pain relievers has either stayed the same or increased over the past two years. Additionally, nearly 90 percent say they “always check the label of acetaminophen products to find the maximum daily dose,” an increase from 85 percent in 2019.     

The CHPA Educational Foundation has conducted a survey about consumers’ knowledge of acetaminophen safe use and the risks of misuse every three years since 2010. The survey results are being released in June to coincide with National Safety Month for an added opportunity to encourage and practice medicine safety with products containing acetaminophen.   

“With self-reported pain on the rise, consumers are turning to safe pain relief options now more than ever,” says Mary Leonard, managing director of the CHPA Educational Foundation. “It is encouraging to see consumers understanding how to safely choose and use products containing acetaminophen, and we know that educational initiatives have played a critical role in this increasing awareness,” she adds.     

“These efforts are bolstered by our long-standing participation in the Acetaminophen Awareness Coalition (AAC),” according to Leonard, which is a group of leading health, healthcare provider and consumer organizations, including the CHPA Educational Foundation. The AAC established the “Know Your Dose” campaign in 2011 to educate consumers on how to safely use medicines containing acetaminophen. “We are thrilled to see education appears to be working,” she adds.     

Other encouraging findings from the survey show that nearly two-thirds (64 percent) of adults in 2022 agree with the statement “two different acetaminophen medicines should never be taken together,” an increase from 56 percent in 2019. Also, 91 percent of respondents strongly agree they “Carefully consider how many acetaminophen pills or doses to take,” an increase from 89 percent in 2019.     

The results reflect the efforts of the AAC and the Know Your Dose campaign, which have reached millions of consumers and healthcare providers since 2011 with safe-use messages and free educational resources in both English and Spanish.   

 For more information, visit

Flower Essence Remedy Saves Your Pet From Summer Stress

(NewsUSA) - Does your pet race for the nearest corner, or hide under the bed when a thunderstorm strikes? Does he or she panic when it’s time to get in the car, or when  home alone for an extended time? Weather, travel, and separation are just a few of the possible causes of stress in pets.     

In addition, the celebratory 4th of July fireworks, while beloved by their owners, are cited as the top cause of stress in pets, according to a survey of approximately 1,000 pet-owning adults in the United States     

Pet stress is a common problem that leaves many pet owners puzzled and searching for solutions. However, homeopathic products that relieve stress in people can have a similar effect in pets. In a survey conducted by Wakefield Research, well over half (56 percent) say they would use a natural, herbal or homeopathic product to relieve their own stress, and more than half of them (51 percent) say they would offer such products to their pets, while 44 percent said they would use natural remedies for themselves and their pets.     

Bach Rescue Remedy Pet drops are a safe, simple option for relieving many types of stress in pets. The homeopathic formula is designed for use before, during and after a potentially stressful event, such as thunderstorms, fireworks, visits to the vet and groomer or a trip on an airplane.     

Bach Rescue Remedy Pet contains a blend of five flower essences selected for their stress-relieving properties:     

  • Cherry Plum: for composure & holding back on impulses     
  • Clematis: for livelier, focused behavior when inattentive     
  • Impatiens: for calm & composure when lacking self-control     
  • Rock Rose: for courage during times of panic or terror     
  • Star of Bethlehem: for easing after effects of trauma or mistreatment     

Formulated with just flower essences, vegetable glycerin, and water, Bach Rescue Remedy Pet drops are free of sedatives, CBD/hemp, sugar and artificial flavors and colors. One dose (four drops) can be given with food, treats or water as often as needed, and used alongside other pet health and wellness products including prescription medications.    “It’s important to anticipate the stress your pets may feel in certain situations and get out ahead of it,” says Cathy Madson, a pet expert at Preventive Vet and spokesperson for Bach Rescue Remedy Pet.     

“We all know what will be happening the evening of July 4th, which means we can be proactive in reducing noise-related stress. I recommend offering Bach Rescue Remedy Pet starting several days in advance in your pet’s water, on treats or directly in the mouth to begin the calming effect before the fireworks ever begin,” she advises.     

“This also holds true for preparing for an impending thunderstorm, grooming or vet visit, leaving them home alone or while traveling.”     

Bach Rescue Remedy Pet drops can be used by dogs, cats, horses, birds, rabbits and lizards of all ages, weights and breeds. The duration of stress relief depends on the pet and the situation. Stress relief for sudden situations, such as neighborhood fireworks, may be immediate, while relief from separation anxiety may take longer. For extended periods of stress relief, the company recommends adding drops to your pet’s water.     

Bach Rescue Remedy Pet is regulated by FDA, categorized under homeopathic drug, and is manufactured to comply with the Good Manufacturing Practice guidelines.     

Don’t let your pet suffer from stress this summer, or at any other time of year.     

Visit to learn more.

Expert Offers Tips to Boost Your Immunity

(NewsUSA) - The ongoing pandemic has highlighted the importance of keeping your immune system strong and healthy, according to Leonard A. Farber, MD, a healthcare executive and expert in emerging technologies and their impact on public health.     

A weak immune system increases your risk not only for developing illness, but for a more severe case if you do become ill with something such as COVID-19, says Dr. Farber, who also serves as a spokesperson for nutritional supplement manufacturer Quadramune.     

Fortunately, there are many ways the average person can strengthen his or her immune system. In many cases, following the obvious and well-known advice to get enough sleep, eat a healthy diet, and exercise regularly can help boost your immune system. Other factors include avoiding smoking and excessive alcohol consumption, and incorporating ways to relieve stress, such as with yoga, tai chi, or other mindfulness-related activities.     

In addition, the right nutritional supplements can play an important role in reducing inflammation in the body and supporting a healthy immune system, says Dr. Farber. “At early stages, our bodies’ inflammatory response can fight off infection as well as play an integral role in injury repair. When inflammatory cells reach an unhealthy level such as in chronic inflammation, they can trigger your body’s immune system to attack healthy tissues and organs,” Dr. Farber explains.     

Nutritional supplements, such as those developed by Quadramune, are designed to help keep the immune system in balance. Anti-inflammatory foods such as salmon, tofu, walnuts, grapes, and olive oil can have a positive effect on the immune system, and many of the active ingredients in these foods are actually found in Quadramune supplements.     

The Quadramune supplements provide the benefits of infection-fighting power and protection against chronic inflammation, according to the company website. Several key ingredients in Quadramune supplements include:     

  • Pterostilbene. A natural dietary compound that has shown antioxidant activity and inflammatory properties.     
  • Epigallocatechin gallate. This powerful antioxidant plant compound boasts antioxidant properties and potential ability to help protect the lungs and promote healthy T cell activity.     
  • Sulphoraphane. This natural plant compound has been shown to help reduce inflammation, which may help protect your lungs and reduce your vulnerability to respiratory infections.     
  • Thymoquinone: phytochemical compound found in the plant Nigella sativa.  This active ingredient is chemically related to hydroxychloroquine, but with no prescription needed. It has demonstrated to stimulate natural killer (NK) cells which are antiviral, and is a potential antiviral itself based on its mechanistic effects on cells.     

This combination of ingredients “can be immune stimulating or boosting and preventative of an unhealthy immune response,” says Dr. Farber. “This allows the body a better chance not only to fight the onset of an infection or inflammatory reaction but also to lessen the severity of certain illnesses, especially those that are inflammatory-based in nature,” he adds.     

For more information, visit

Colorectal Cancer Screening Options Reduce Disparities

(NewsUSA) - Colorectal cancer remains the third most common non-skin cancer in American adults, according to the American Cancer Society. Regular screening is essential to identifying colorectal cancer early, so it can be effectively treated. If colorectal cancer is caught early, five-year survival rates are as high as 90 percent. However, many people do not seek routine screening, and don’t experience symptoms until their cancers are advanced and harder to treat.     

The American Cancer Society recommends that adults at average risk for colorectal cancer should be screened every five years starting at age 45. Unfortunately, the disparities that persist in many areas of health care continue to affect colorectal cancer screening.     

For example, according to the Ohio Department of Health, colorectal cancer is diagnosed in more than 5,200 Ohioans each year, and the state’s colorectal cancer mortality rate among Blacks from 2012 to 2016 was 20% higher than that of whites.     

Strategies to reduce these disparities include offering more options for screening.     

“I believe that it is important to not pressure people to use one particular screening approach. It is up to them and their doctor to determine the method and frequency that is best in their case,” says AmeriHealth Caritas Ohio Market Chief Medical Officer Steven Spalding, M.D. “The important thing is that everyone get regularly screened.”     

Screening methods, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC’s) recommended frequency for those at average risk, include:     

• Every Year: A fecal occult blood test or fecal immunochemical test (FIT). Both check for blood in your stools. These tests can be done in your own home, and require no advance preparation or dietary restrictions.     

• Every 1-3 Years: A FIT-DNA test, which combines FIT with a test that looks for altered DNA in the stool. This test also can be done at home without advance preparation.     

• Every 5 Years: A flexible sigmoidoscopy, in which a doctor puts a short, thin, flexible tube into your rectum and the lower third of the colon. The device allows the doctor to remove most polyps and take biopsies.     

• Every 10 Years: A colonoscopy, which is similar to a flexible sigmoidoscopy but examines the entire colon. Your doctor also will conduct a colonoscopy if any of the other screening methods reveal anything unusual.     

AmeriHealth Caritas Ohio, a Medicaid managed care organization that is slated to begin serving Ohio Medicaid enrollees later this year, will cover the costs of colorectal cancer screening tests on the CDC’s schedule from ages 45 to 75, and earlier and/or more frequently for members considered to be higher risk. However, other Medicaid plans can have different policies, so be sure to check with your health plan.   

 For more information about AmeriHealth Caritas Ohio, visit

Costs of Aging in Place are Emotional and Financial

(NewsUSA) - Many older adults would prefer to remain in their own homes as they age, but a lack of affordable options makes this plan a challenge for individuals and their families, according to results of a new survey of more than 1,700 caregivers and other respondents in two rural California counties.     

Older individuals may find themselves burning through savings to stay at home, or forced to move to a nursing home or long-term-care facility if they can’t afford to hire home-care help, according to the survey. The survey was sponsored by Legacy Health Endowment, a California-based nonprofit healthcare grant-making foundation.   

Often, adult children become caregivers, and they face financial and emotional hardships of their own. Nearly 80% of the survey respondents says that their caregiving responsibilities have affected their ability to pay their household expenses. Adult children may sacrifice saving for their own retirements, funding their children’s college education, or making down payments on a home to financially support and care for aging parents.     

In these situations, “caregivers shoulder the burden of rearranging their schedules, juggling doctors’ visits and prescriptions, squeezing in regular shopping trips and performing essential housekeeping chores, all while caring for a spouse or aging parent,” explains Jeffrey Lewis, President and CEO of Legacy Health Endowment.   

The burden is even heavier for women, says Lewis. “Women who leave the labor force early because of care-giving responsibilities cost themselves an average of $324,044 in lost salary and Social Security and pension contributions over their lifetimes,” he adds.     

Other key survey results related to women caregivers include the following:     

  • Approximately 90% think services that allow seniors and those who are disabled to live where they prefer are important.     
  • Approximately 72% say that caregiving responsibilities have impacted their physical, mental, and emotional health.     
  • Approximately 60% report decreasing their work time because of caregiving responsibilities.

The survey also found overwhelming support from respondents for respite care for primary caregivers, who often face fatigue and burnout. More than 91% say they support programs that provide resources for their own mental health as well as resources to help with caregiving.  

The survey was sponsored by Legacy Health Endowment and conducted by J. Wallin Opinion Research, and conducted in English and Spanish between March 25 and April 19, 2022, in Stanislaus and Merced counties. The data were collected by professional interviewers by calling cell phones and landline phones, as well as online interviews via text, e-mail and social media.     

For full survey results,visit

How to Maximize Your 2022 Medicare Advantage Plan

(By George Renaudin, SVP, Humana) - Now that we’re halfway through 2022, it’s important that people with Medicare re-evaluate what is included in the Medicare Advantage health plans they selected to ensure they’re maximizing their coverage throughout the year.

While it’s common for Medicare Advantage members to use benefits such as coverage for doctor’s appointments, preventive screenings and vaccines, many plans offer additional benefits so individuals should look to take advantage of the innovative options that might be included in their plan, such as:  

• Transportation Benefits: Several health plans cover non-emergency medical transportation to and from doctor’s appointments. If transportation has been a problem for you, or you’d prefer to not drive, inquire with your health plan about transportation benefits in your area.     

• Fitness Programs: The SilverSneakers health and fitness program is designed for individuals with Medicare. Members have access to 15,000 participating U.S. fitness locations which may have cardio equipment, pools, and free weights as well as fitness classes and social events. The program also includes yoga, walking groups and on-demand video classes.     

• COVID Care: In addition to the free tests offered by the government, some Medicare Advantage plans currently offer 14 days of home-delivered meals (up to 28 meals) as well as $0 copays for testing, treatment, and vaccinations.     

• Insulin Savings: The price of insulin can be a barrier for the 3.3 million people with Medicare who use it. Fortunately, many plans offer a benefit to help members save money on insulin costs. For example, some Humana members pay no more than $35 for a 30-day supply of select insulins at all in-network pharmacies.     

These are just some of the benefits included in Medicare Advantage plans. If you’re currently enrolled in a plan, reach out to your agent or health plan to confirm what you’re eligible for so you can take advantage of these resources, as the only opportunity to change your plan outside of the annual election period is if you encounter certain events, such as moving or losing other insurance coverage.

Humana is a Medicare Advantage HMO, HMO SNP, PPO, PPO SNP and PFFS organization and a stand-alone PDP prescription drug plan with a Medicare contract.  Enrollment in any Humana plan depends on contract renewal.

George Renaudin is a senior vice president at Humana.


Subscribe to Health