health care


Fri June 13, 2014
Regional Coverage

Onondaga County Justice Center opens new infirmary to reduce inmate hospital visits

The Onondaga County Justice Center in Syracuse.
Ellen Abbott WRVO

A new, higher level of medical care is now available at the Onondaga County Justice Center. The new infirmary is located in the downtown Syracuse jail that holds prisoners awaiting trials or transfer to other facilities.

There has always been space for an infirmary in the almost 20-year-old jail, but cost considerations kept Onondaga County from staffing it. Now, the medical organization the county contracts out to can offer the advanced level of training needed for the staff that already works in the jail’s medical unit.

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Tue April 29, 2014

Onondaga County Medical Society calls health program realignment a poor decision

The Onondaga County Medical Society has taken an official stance against the proposed realignment of the Human Services Division of Onondaga County's government. The physicians organization believes the plan to take the Maternal Health and Child Wellness programs out of the purview of the Health Department is a bad move.

The organization has six major concerns about the move, says society treasurer Dr. Richard Beers. He says it starts with the unintended consequences of changing the relationship doctors already have with health care providers involved in the county’s programs.

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Tue March 25, 2014

St. Joseph's in Syracuse collaborating with Lewis County General Hospital

St. Joseph's in Syracuse is working with the Lewis County General Hospital to increase health services to rural areas.
St. Joseph's Hospital

Saint Joseph’s Hospital in Syracuse is expanding it’s relationship with a North Country hospital. Agreements like the one between St. Joe’s and the Lewis County General Hospital could be the wave of future health care in more rural areas of New York state.

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Mon March 10, 2014

Governor proposes offering low-cost 'basic health care plan"

People who are finding it difficult to pay for a health insurance policy offered through New York sate’s health care exchanges, may find a more affordable plan, if a proposal in Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s budget goes through.

The governor’s proposed spending plan would allow New York to offer what’s called a "basic health care plan," according to Mary Clark, regional director of Citizen Action League of New York.

“That would really opens the doors to provide coverage at extremely low cost to families at 200 percent of poverty,” she said.

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Mon February 17, 2014
Regional Coverage

National pressures hit Carthage Area Hospital with 73 layoffs

Carthage Area Hospital says the same pressures that are facing all hospitals these days forced it to restructure.
Credit Joanna Richards

Hospitals around the country are all under the same pressures: a turn toward outpatient and preventive care, low Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement rates, and increasing regulations. It’s the same in Carthage. 

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Thu January 16, 2014

St. Joseph's Primary Care Center on Syracuse's Westside provides one-stop shop for patients

An exam room at the expanded St. Joseph's Primary Care Center-West in Syracuse.
Ellen Abbott WRVO

St. Joseph’s Hospital Health Center has expanded it’s primary care center in one poverty stricken Syracuse neighborhood. The new center will offer a single location where patients can get many medical needs met on the city’s near Westside.

The Primary Care Center-West has been around on Gifford Street since the mid-1990s. Medical Director Luis Castro says the expansion not only quadruples the size of the facility, but creates a kind of one-stop shop for patients.

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Mon December 30, 2013

New medical society president says physicians need more say in health care system

Dr. David Halleran is the new president of the Onondaga County Medical Society
Courtesy Onodaga County Medical Society

Health care, and particularly the world of physicians, is changing. The new president of the Onondaga County Medical Society says it’s a result of a business model that ends up limiting how doctors do their jobs.

Dr. David Halleran says over the past couple of decades, the business model of medicine has focused on profits and efficiency. And he believes that has created a more disparate medical community.

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Mon December 16, 2013
Regional Coverage

Counseling service latest Watertown health care provider to get a lifeline

The Family Counseling Service is the second Watertown health care nonprofit to get a financial bailout in recent months.
Credit Joanna Richards

The North Country Family Health Center, in Watertown, is still working to gain long-term financial stability after nearly closing in October. Now, another Watertown health care provider is getting a bailout to stay afloat. This time, it’s Family Counseling Service of Northern New York. 

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Mon December 2, 2013

Patient alerts system extends scope of care

Credit Kate O'Connell WXXI

Many health care providers don’t know when their patients are admitted or discharged from the hospital or seen by an ambulance crew. That makes it harder to deliver comprehensive care.

To address this issue, the Rochester Regional Health Information Organization (RHIO) has set up a simple alert system that’s aimed at improving quality of care.

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Wed November 20, 2013
Refugee Resettlement

Refugees stepping into gap in health care services

Sarah Miner talks to Abdalla about his medicines.
Kate O'Connell Innovation Trail

The Innovation Trail is looking at how refugees have weaved their way into upstate New York's changing economy.

On a recent fall day, community health nurse Sarah Miner is welcomed warmly into the home of Somali refugee Abdalla. Miner works with HCR Home Care in Rochester and she’s been visiting Abdalla and his family for a while now.

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Wed November 13, 2013

Medicare open enrollment deadline approaches

There’s less than a month until the Dec. 7 deadline, when Medicare’s open enrollment period ends.

Blaine Longnecker, a sales consultant out of Syracuse’s Excellus Blue Cross Blue Shield office, said seniors eligible for the federal health insurance program who are looking to change their plan shouldn't bide their time.

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Fri November 1, 2013

NY says its health exchange unaffected by federal problems so far

Amid ongoing problems with the federal health insurance exchange website, New York is one of a handful of states where residents can successfully enroll through the state's health insurance marketplace, according to state officials.

Elisabeth Benjamin, a New York state health navigator, said the site did have some glitches in the first two weeks, but said now she is thrilled with the exchange's success so far.  

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Wed October 23, 2013
Regional Coverage

Head of Children's Clinic resigns in wake of financial upheaval

Dan Wasneechak has had a bumpy ride in the two months he's headed up the North Country Children's Clinic in Waterown. After announcing its temporary closure, then working on a deal to keep it open for now, Wasneechak will resign on Friday.
Joanna Richards

The head of the North Country Children's Clinic in Watertown says he'll resign after Friday. A spokeswoman for Samaritan Medical Center, which is temporarily operating the clinic, said Dan Wasneechak  submitted his resignation yesterday. She said he gave no reason for his decision.

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Tue September 24, 2013

Geriatric ER at Upstate University Hospital helping more seniors

Since it opened in July, the geriatric emergency room, known as GEM Care, at the Upstate University Hospital Community Campus is getting more seniors in the emergency department compared to a year ago.

GEM Care Director Dr. Jaime Ciacco said the new emergency department has achieved the goal of having fewer seniors admitted to the hospital after those visits.

He also said one thing they are finding at the facility, is that they're fixing the small things that can often be overlooked in a senior's health care.

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Thu September 19, 2013
Politics and Government

Cuomo says Washington gridlock won't affect Obamacare in NY

Gov. Andrew Cuomo said threats in Congress to defund Obamacare won’t have any effect on the federal Affordable Health Care Act going forward in New York.

Cuomo said even if Congress is gridlocked over funding for the federal health care act, New York will still be going ahead on Oct. 1 with the required health care exchanges.

 “The health exchange is up and running,” Cuomo said on a trip to Niagara Falls. “I don’t believe there’s going to be any effect on the state.”

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Thu September 19, 2013
Station Announcement

On air: health care for veterans & the military

This health forum broadcast on WRVO Sunday, November 17 at 7 p.m.

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Mon August 12, 2013

Upstate hospitals get mixed reviews in 2013 report card

Crouse Hospital in Syracuse received poor marks for six cases of leaving an object in a patient during surgery.
der_krampus via Flickr

Four hospitals in upstate New York have been given poor grades and put on a "watch list" by a private health care watchdog group.

The Niagara Health Quality Coalition has been ranking New York state’s best and worst hospitals for a decade, and the latest report card released on Sunday shows a mixed bag in upstate New York.

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Fri July 19, 2013

Upstate health care centers funded to get uninsured into Affordable Care Act

Some rights reserved by 401 (K) 2013

As delays pile up in the implementation of components of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has awarded $150 million to the nation’s health care centers as part of an outreach and enrollment program for patients with low incomes.

The grants will help centers provide advice regarding the introduction of the Affordable Care Act, and how it will affect people’s current health coverage as well as those who are currently uninsured.

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Thu July 18, 2013

Schumer pushing for SUNY health care work training program

Sen. Charles Schumer, D-N.Y., is pushing for SUNY's application to establish health care worker training programs at its community colleges.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Sen. Charles Schumer is trying to get the federal labor department to steer $23 million to New York's community colleges so they can set up a health care worker training program.

The State University of New York is applying for the grant. It's similar to one SUNY won last year for high-tech manufacturing.

Twenty-nine community college campuses are listed on the grant application, and would split the grant money. The schools would also partner with area hospitals.

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Mon July 8, 2013

Super computing could help manage enormous amounts of medical information

Some rights reserved by jfcherry

Watson, the IBM supercomputer, is best known for its historic win on the television game show, Jeopardy. But, the same components that made the system a quiz show winner could be redirected toward lowering the cost of health care in upstate New York.

According to Steve Gold, vice president for IBM’s Watson Solutions division, the amount of available medical knowledge doubles every five years. While that can provide a challenge for individual physicians to keep up with, it’s something Watson thrives on.

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Wed July 3, 2013
The Upstate Economy

Syracuse heavily dependent on health care for economic recovery

St. Joseph's Hospital on Syracuse's north side is one of the hospitals driving the city's job growth.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

More than a third of the post-recession jobs Syracuse has gained have come in the health care sector. That's a percentage that puts it near the top of cities dependent on the industry for economic growth.

According to numbers tabulated by the Brookings Institution's Metropolitan Policy Institute, 35.9 percent of Syracuse's recently added jobs have been in health care. Only three other metro areas in the country had a higher percentage.

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Mon July 1, 2013

Upstate University Hospital home to new toxicology staff

Credit Ellen Abbott/WRVO

Starting Monday, the emergency room at Upstate University Hospital in Syracuse will have the services of medical toxicologists on a 24-hour basis to help diagnose drug overdoses and poisonings. Toxicologist Dr. Ross Sullivan says toxicologists use a number of methods to evaluate a possible overdose or poisoning.

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Fri May 31, 2013
Station Announcement

Health forum: government funding of health care in upstate New York

Credit 401(K) 2012 / Flickr

Join us for the first in a series of community forums on health care.

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Mon February 18, 2013

New health clinic founders want to give back to community

Members of the Muslim American Care and Compassion Alliance at the Rahma Health Clinic.
Credit Tom Magnarelli/WRVO

The grand opening of a new health clinic on Syracuse's South Side was held over the weekend. A group called the Muslim American Care and Compassion Alliance started the free clinic with the goal of treating preventable diseases in an under-served community.

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Tue January 29, 2013
Politics and Government

Local governments will be graded on fiscal health

Municipalities and school districts in New York state will soon get graded on their fiscal health. A fiscal monitoring system run by the state comptroller's office will publicly identify local governments that may be heading towards a fiscal cliff.

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Fri December 28, 2012

Multi-sensory room gives children respite from hospital treatments

Multi-sensory room at Galisano Children's Hospital is a get-away for kids undergoing treatment
Galisano Children's Hospital

In the midst of treatments, tubes and needles, there's a place for patients at the Golisano Children's Hospital in Syracuse to go and find some peace.  A one-of-a-kind multi-sensory room takes kids away from the stress of a hospital setting.

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Thu December 20, 2012

Simple Admit tries to make those pre-op screenings a little easier

Dan Coholan, left, and Mike Horning founded the web-based surgical admisson system Simple Admit three years ago.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

You don't have to know the answer to every question. And a little cartoon dog named Sam will pop up to let you know if you messed something up.

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Wed December 19, 2012

A hospital invests not only in new buildings, but a neighborhood

Team building exercises are part of a tryout to get into a Green Train program sponsored by St. Joseph's Hospital.
Ryan Delaney WRVO

Construction cranes poke above the already looming structure of St. Joseph's Hospital on the north side of Syracuse. Women in hospital scrubs and men in reflective vests and hard hats walk past, but Dominic Robinson is facing the other direction.

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Tue October 30, 2012
Regional Coverage

Mercy flights grounded during Hurricane Sandy

Mercy Flight Central, an upstate medical air service, shut down operations while hurricane Sandy blew over. Due to high wind warnings, they were not able to fly patients.

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Tue July 17, 2012
Regional Coverage

Poll: New Yorkers support health care law but feel costs will rise

Most New Yorkers agree with the recent Supreme Court decision upholding President Obama’s health care reform, but most think the new law, when fully implemented, will cause health care costs to rise.

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