Topic

Health

901 petitions

Update posted 11 hours ago

Petition to Claire McCaskill, Jill Schupp, Gary Romine, U.S. Senate, Roy Blunt, Dan Brown, Mike Cierpiot, Sandy Crawford, Mike Cunningham, S. Kiki Curls, Bill Eigel, Jason Holsman, Denny Hoskins, Jacob W Hummel, Andrew Koenig, Doug Libla, Brian Munzlinger, Jamilah Nasheed, Bob Onder, Ron Richard, Jeanie Riddle, John Joseph Rizzo, Caleb Rowden, David Cameron MP, Rob Schaaf, Dave Schatz, Scott Sifton, Wayne Wallingford, Jay Wasson, Paul Wieland, Richard C. Shelby, Doug Jones, Lisa Murkowski, Dan Sullivan, John McCain, Jeff Flake, John Boozman, Tom Cotton, DIane Feinstein, Kamala D. Harris, Michael F. Bennet, Cory Gardner, Richard Blumenthal, Chris Murphy, Thomas R. Carper, Christopher A. Coons, Bill Nelson, Marco Rubio, Johnny Isakson, David Perdue, Brian Schatz, Mazie K. Hirono, Mike Crapo, James E. Risch, Richard J. Durbin, Tammy Duckworth, Joe Donnelly, Todd Young, Chuck Grassley, Joni Ernst, Pat Roberts, Jerry Moran, Mitch McConnell, Rand Paul, Bill Cassidy, John F. Kennedy, Susan M. Collins, Angus S. King Jr., Benjamin L. Cardin, Chris Van Hollen, Elizabeth Warren, Ed Markey, Debbie Stabenow, Gary C. Peters, Amy Klobuchar, Tina Smith, Roger F. Wicker, Cindy Hyde-Smith, Jon Tester, Steve Daines, Deb Fischer, Benjamin Sasse, Dean Heller, Catherine Cortez Masto, Jeanne Shaheen, Margaret Wood Hassan, Robert Menendez, Cory A. Booker, Tom Udall, Martin Heinrich, Charles E. Schumer, Kirsten E. Gillibrand, Richard Burr, Thom Tillis, John Hoeven, Heidi Heitkamp, Sherrod Brown, Rob Portman, James Inhofe, Ron Wyden, Jeff Merkley, Robert Casey, Pat Toomey, Jack Reed, Sheldon whitehouse, Lindsey Graham, Tim Scott, John Thune, Mike Rounds, Lamar Alexander, Bob Corker, John Cornyn, Ted Cruz, Orrin G. Hatch, Mike Lee, Patrick J. Leahy, Bernie Sanders, Mark Warner, Tim Kaine, Patty Murray, Maria Cantwell, Joe Manchin III, Shelley Moore Capito, Ron Johnson, Tammy Baldwin, Michael B. Enzi, John Barrasso, President of the United States, Maria Chappelle-Nadal, Ann Wagner

Stop Forcing Mail Order Pharmacy as Only Choice of Coverage & Monitor Package Temperature

My son, received a life saving liver transplant at the age of 2. His life depends on the potency and effectiveness of chemotherapy/immune suppression medications to prevent his body's immune system from fighting off his transplanted liver. In the past mail order delivered his liquid oral medications in nothing but a plastic envelope on a 102 degree day on a hot enclosed not temperature controlled UPS truck. Shortly after, he went into liver rejection which could have resulted in complete liver failure or death. I speculated that the medication could have been too weak after the delivery of medications in high heat. I vowed to never again risk his life with mail order pharmacy. Recently, we were mandated/forced to only use mail order pharmacy in order to receive coverage for his life-saving medications. Hesitant, I begged for an ice pack. The package arrived in only a bag on an about 90 degree day again without an ice pack. The hot non-temperature controlled enclosed delivery truck can reach temperatures up to 170 degrees. His labs elevated again afterward. My son wants to know, "Why would they do that?" I contacted the manufacturer, who does all of the testings for my son drugs who stated that both of my son's medications should be discarded and considered less potent once stored above 86 degrees as higher temperatures and freezing could result in lower potency. I also found out that liquid medication is the most harmed by the mishandling of medications outside of the manufactures temperature storage guidelines.  I contacted the mail order pharmacy who refused to replace or take back the medication. They said the law & USP Pharmacopoeia allows them to ship up to 104 degrees, although the manufacturer states it is not proven safe at these temperatures. However, I have received communication from USP Pharmacopoeia who writes the guidelines for storage and they also said that the mail order pharmacy should follow the manufacturer's guidelines of 59-86 degrees for storage. I contacted the FDA, who states that the mail order pharmacy should be using the manufacturer's guidelines that have been proven safe.. However, since the mail order pharmacies are regulated loosely by the State Board of Pharmacy, not the FDA there was nothing that the FDA could do.  Since starting this petition, I connected with another petitioner for air conditioning of the back of UPS trucks as the trucks are not temperature controlled. Her husband went into renal failure, because the UPS trucks are hot and enclosed and temperatures reach up to 170 degrees. It's like walking into a low temp oven. When the temperatures of the outside are colder than your freezer, I'm not sure how cold the trucks are but I'm certain mailboxes and doorsteps can get in negative temperatures.  I made over 30 calls to the insurance company begging for them to please let us pick my son's medications up at the local pharmacy at which they are filled. My son's physician wrote a note/appeal as his transplant team has stated that they have tried to voice their concerns about this issue with their pediatric/child patients and no one is listening! The insurance company still denied the doctor's appeal for us to pick up my son's medications in the safest way. It was not until the Media became evolved that the insurance company budged.  I felt helpless and have united with many other pharmacists, physicians, patients, mothers and fathers, and caregivers who feel the same way. Helpless. Mail order of prescription drugs should be a choice not the only option of coverage. Mandatory mail order programs from all plan types (INCLUDING the plans that are regulated by ERISA) needs to cease until mail order pharmacies are forced to store and monitor medications during their deliveries at the temperatures tested and proven safe by the manufacturer. I would never put my son's medications in a hot non-temperature controlled environment, and shouldn't be forced to only use this option in order to get coverage for his life-saving medications. Mail order pharmacies may appear to save money, but when my son ended up in the hospital after taking medications that could have been compromised by having lower potency, the cost of the rejection was thousands of dollars. If his liver would have fully failed, the cost of his liver transplant for just 5 days (he was in the hospital for 5 weeks) was over $1,000,000. The lax regulation and oversight may save money on prescription drug plans but may come at an increased cost to the health plan itself. Also, keep in mind the endless waste of medications that automatically are sent regardless of whether or not patients need them. Also, people with chronic, complex conditions, should always have the option of face to face interaction with a pharmacist who knows their complex needs and medical history. The pharmacist and patient relationship is crucial to the successful outcome of the patient's overall health. Taking this away is harmful to patients and be more costly to our already stressed healthcare system. Since starting the petition, many have also stated that they experience life-threatening delays in receiving their prescriptions. Medications get lost, stolen, people are going days without medications that their life depends on. Only allowing mail-order pharmacy for coverage is unethical and irresponsible.  Another important fact. Mandatory mail order programs are discriminatory. It is estimated that 40% of our homeless are disabled. How is mandatory mail order fair and working for them as they may not have an address and not even know where they will be from day to day? It is crucial that All plans should include true fair coverage and reimbursements of our pharmacist.  Please help! We need legislation to protect all patients by ending the mandatory mail order pharmacy coverage in every type of plan offered in the nation.  We need your help to make mandatory mail order an option, not a mandate.    YOUR URGENT SUPPORT WILL SAVE LIVES! THANK YOU!!

Loretta Boesing
77,543 supporters
Update posted 18 hours ago

Petition to Scott Gottlieb MD, Jeff Shuren, Sybill Storz, Managing Director, Hal Lawrence, William Maisel MD

Health Alert: Many Women Have Died Unnecessarily Because Dangerous Cancers of the Uterus and Ovaries Are Being Spread using MORCELLATORS. Stop MORCELLATION in Minimally Invasive Gynecological Surgery.

Friends of the Public, Many women have been harmed and have died prematurely or unnecessarily because of a routine but avoidable gynecological practice known as MORCELLATION. This world-wide practice has devastated many families for well over two decades now. More than 600,000 hysterectomies are done in the US every year. By the age of 70, one out of every three American women will have had a hysterectomy. About 90% of these surgeries are done for what is presumed to be a benign condition called fibroids. More and more of these surgeries are done with minimally invasive techniques.  Usually, to get the uterus out of the body using the "minimally invasive" technique, it is cut into small pieces with a machine called a morcellator.  However, a devastating problem happens if in fact the woman did NOT have fibroids – but if she actually had cancer.  Unfortunately, the tests that are done before a hysterectomy do not identify these cancers well.  Many gynecologists don't even bother getting any tests. In fact, morcellating cancer spreads the cancer inside the woman’s body.   This is called ‘up staging’ the cancer.  It is important to understand: 1) The average life span following accidental morcellation of sarcoma is only 24-36 months. 2) Only 15% of woman who have leiomyosarcoma (LMS) that has spread (stage 4) will be alive after 5 years. 3) Women with sarcoma who are morcellated are about 4 times more likely to die from sarcoma than if they had not been morcellated.  This is an avoidable disaster. This problem has been recognized for more than two decades.  A review of the literature, by the Food and Drug Administration, revealed that 1 in 350 women who go for fibroid surgery actually have sarcoma.  This means that everyday 2-5 women in the US – and more around the world are susceptible to having a deadly cancer spread because of morcellation. This catastrophic problem has happened in my family and we are fighting to stop this dangerous activity called morcellation.  A chance of 1 in 350 for such a devastating outcome is much too high to accept.  Women should be told the truth and the practice should stop. Please help us bring an end to spreading cancer with morcellation.  This is a totally AVOIDABLE practice.  People need to understand their options, which include hysterectomy through a mini-lapartomy incision or trans-vaginally – but – up until recently, most women never heard anything about morcellation or about the possibility of cancer upstaging. And, if they do, this risk is down-played by most minimally invasive gynecologists. We can tell you based on our experience, when cancers are spread by morcellation, the outcomes can be devastating - because the cancer is upstaged. We need your help. Please sign our petition so we can get the word out.  We want the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology to change this "standard of care" by ending the needless waste of life caused by spreading cancer with morcellation. For more information and original references see: http://journals.lww.com/oncology-times/blog/onlinefirst/pages/post.aspx?PostID=188 ) (also see:http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/23189178) (also see:http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21565389). The attached video below shows an example of morcellation https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nPkKw0j-aXE The following companies manufacture and distribute uterine morcellator devices: 1) ETHICON: Gynecare morcellator 2) Storz: Rotocut Morcellator 3) Richard Wolf Medical Instrumentation Company 4) LiNA: LiNA Xcise Cordless Laparoscopic Morcellator 5) Blue Endo MOREsolution Tissue Morcellator 6) Pneumoliner Power Morcellation System by Olympus Corporation. Intuitive Surgical's Da Vinci Robot deserves special mention, as the frequency of robotic hysterectomies performed by minimally invasive gynecologists is currently on the rise across the United States. Note that Intuitive Surgical builds and markets the DaVinci robot, which is not itself a "morcellator". However, use of the DaVinci robot almost invariably appears to require that the uterus be minced up, or morcellated, into smaller pieces inside the woman's belly cavity in order to extract from the abdomen. A clear example is shown in the following YouTube video of DaVinci being used to perform a robotic hysterectomy and manually morcellating the uterus using the endo-wrist component of the robot (morcellation is being performed at minute 5:30 of the video).  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=f6luiX6UQmg  Without morcellation using equipment manufactured by Intuitive Surgical, robotic hysterectomies would, likely, not be possible using the DaVinci Robot. It is noteworthy that the DaVinci robot does not appear to have a readily available warning label advising against its use to morcellate tumors with malignant potential inside the body. The company's Chief Medical Advisor, Dr. Myriam Curet, a surgeon herself, has been informed and advised of this severe hazard in the use of DaVinci for robotic hysterectomy and the absence of a readily available warning label.

Hooman Noorchashm
95,505 supporters
Update posted 21 hours ago

Petition to Thomas Webb, Sergei Chernikov, Erin Culbert, Dan Bishop, Jeff Jackson, Vickie Sawyer, Jeff Tarte, Joyce Waddell, Natasha Marcus, Kelly Alexander, John Autry, Chaz Beasley, Mary Belk, John Bradford, Bill Brawley, Becky Carney, Carla Cunningham, Andy Dulin, Beverly Earle, John Fraley, Rodney Moore, Paige Sheehan, Bill Norton, Lynn Good, Cara Brooks, Jordan Martin, M Atkins, Roy Cooper, Michael Regan, Mitchell Setzer, Andy Wells, Rusty Knox, WT Washam, J Aneralla, board , elected officials, J Pope, J Pierson, R Gaither, LaShonda Hart, Shiela Holman, John Risgaard, Andrew Pitner, Brandy Costner, Mike North, Alexandra Russell

CLEAN UP COAL ASH ON LAKE NORMAN, NC

At Marshall Steam Station on Lake Norman, Duke Energy stores millions of tons of coal ash on the banks of the lake in an unlined leaking pit that pollutes the groundwater and the lake.  In November, Duke Energy was required to make public filings under national coal ash storage standards that showed that Duke Energy’s coal ash storage is failing those standards. Under the North Carolina Coal Ash Management Act, The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) will decide in April whether Duke Energy will be required to clean up the Lake Norman site and move the coal ash to safe, dry, lined storage. Duke Energy has proposed to leave the coal ash in the unlined pit on the banks of Lake Norman and put a synthetic cover and soil on top (so-called cap in place).  Local community and conservation groups have been urging Duke Energy to move its coal ash to safe, dry, lined storage away from the lake and out of the groundwater (“clean closure”).  Duke Energy is now required to remove its coal ash from unlined pits at 8 other sites in North Carolina, but Duke Energy wants to leave its coal ash in an unlined pit at Lake Norman. In South Carolina, all the coal ash is being removed from every unlined coal ash lagoon in the state, but Duke Energy wants to leave coal ash in unlined waterfront pits in North Carolina, including on Lake Norman. Tell The North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality (DEQ) and Duke Energy to clean up the coal ash mess at Lake Norman by moving the ash out of the unlined pit to safe dry, lined storage – as Duke Energy is required to do at 8 other sites in North Carolina, and as is happening at every coal ash lagoon in South Carolina.  Lake Norman and the surrounding community deserve the same protections! And It’s important for NC DEQ and DE leave a lasting legacy of caring for the community, by correctly and properly cleaning up the coal ash on Lake Norman.  

Coal Ash
13,288 supporters
Update posted 22 hours ago

Petition to National Alliance on Mental Illness, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention, Dictionary.com , Merriam-Webster Dictionary, Merriam-Webster

Change the Definition of Suicide

Every day is a tough day to cope with losing a loved one by suicide. The holidays only bring up more memories and, often, more pain and grief. As a nonprofit organization that promotes awareness of suicide and mental illness and that provides support for those affected, i understand calls on the American Association of Suicide Prevention and the National Alliance on Mental Illness to change the definition of suicide on their websites and in their literature, or to add this new definition on their information pages about suicide.   Rather than including the outdated, stigmatizing definition about intentionally taking one’s own life, we believe wording should focus on suicide’s tie to severe pain and mental illness. The definition should be changed to, “a terminal side effect of mental illness; the result of wanting one’s physical or emotional pain to end.” Suicide is often a terminal effect of a mental illness. Alternatively, one does not need to have been formally diagnosed with a psychological disorder to experience pain. One may feel pain, despair, and hopelessness after experiences of heartbreak, bullying, financial loss, or even a broken leg that caused physical pain and/or difficult changes in lifestyle. Any difficult circumstance can cause pain, and sometimes it feels too difficult for one to live with. Thus, it is time to change the definition so that all of these circumstances can be discussed openly and honestly, providing relief and hope for those struggling.   Vonnie, the founder of i understand, lost her husband to suicide, and many of our supporters are survivors, as well. We believe that a change in the definition will change the way we all speak.   For example, if you ask how Vonnie’s husband died and she answers, “He killed himself,” how does that make you feel? Or If she answers, “He died from depression,” how do you feel?   Likely, the two answers will lead to very different conversations, the second resulting in a discussion about the suffering he was experiencing.   We believe it’s important to talk about WHY someone died rather than HOW someone died by suicide. And those reasons revolve around a struggle so deep that the person sees no other way to manage. We need to focus on the mental illness or pain leading to the death – the causes and symptoms – rather than the act itself. This will increase understanding and reduce the stigma attached to suicide and, in turn, will save lives. A simple change in language can impact those struggling with their physical or mental health, their loved ones, and survivors of suicide loss.   We call on AFSP and NAMI to be the first to make a public move affirming this definition by including it in their literature and websites. We believe this should be a movement across the world in mental health organizations, schools, families, dictionaries, psychological organizations, and social circles. Change the conversation with those around you – you never know whose life you could be impacting. AFSP and NAMI - it's time to take action.  i understand is a nonprofit organization based in Grand Rapids, Michigan, promoting awareness of suicide and mental illness and providing support for those affected. We hold support groups for those who have lost a loved one to suicide and we host free monthly community events. We have partnered with Helen DeVos Children’s Hospital, where we have funded a Clinical Nurse Specialist who educates about mental health in the traditional hospital setting – the first position of its kind in the country. Our nurse works with staff on using proper language around mental illness and on finding appropriate treatment for patients. Additionally, we provide care packages for those affected by a mental health crisis at the hospital. Visit our website at iunderstandloveheals.com or find us on Facebook by searching i understand or #iunderstandloveheals

i understand
6,545 supporters