This week: The religious objection to Obamacare's requirement that birth control be free and available makes its way to the Supreme Court again. Baltimore's lead paint problem won't go away. We've also got a sad tale about the exploitative side of Florida's addiction recovery industry, and some hopeful news that more doctors will soon be ready and able to treat people with substance abuse disorders. Plus, there's a turf war brewing over American livers.
We've reported before on the shortage of doctors qualified to treat addiction. As Dr. Richard Blondell puts it, "There are more doctors out there prescribing heavy doses of narcotics than there are out there trying to help people get off of them.” But now, students at medical schools around the country will have the option to become addiction medicine specialists. Side Effects reporter Michelle Faust speaks with Dr. Blondell, who worked for years on the curriculum for the new credential.
Though religious nonprofits are exempt from Obamacare's requirement to pay for employees' birth control, the plaintiffs say the government's work-around still makes them "complicit in sin." NPR has a report from Wednesday's hearing. And the Washington Post explains why the country's leading organization for pediatricians hopes the court rules for the Obama Administration.
If you need a liver transplant in the U.S., your best bet is to live in the Southeast or Midwest - or have the means to relocate. Bostonian Seth Doraiswami, who was born with liver disease, is one of those who hit the road in hopes getting a new organ. WHYY's The Pulse has this fascinating story.
Baltimore banned lead paint all the way back in 1950, decades before the rest of the country. While lead poisoning has declined dramatically there amidst increasing regulation, hundreds of children are still poisoned each year. How can this be? NPR reports.
In Delray Beach, Florida, you can get kickbacks for signing up drug users for treatment programs and halfway houses. According to reporting from Buzzfeed News, these hustlers are profiting from health insurance dollars, while those trying to kick get sub-par treatment. Read the story.