Health | Nashville Public Radio

Health

What questions do you have about health care? What health-related stories aren't getting enough attention or need to be explored more deeply? Let us know in the form below:

_

Blake Farmer / WPLN

Even those most at risk have trouble believing how far HIV prevention has come. There's now a pill that can substantially drive down the risk of contracting HIV — and it's often free of charge.

PrEP — as it's known — is the big topic for a World AIDS Day summit in Nashville on Friday. But the daily regimen hasn't become as popular as public health officials would like.

Blake Farmer / WPLN

Nashville General Hospital has requested nearly $20 million to get through the rest of the fiscal year that ends in June.

Without a cash infusion — which has become a regular mid-year request — the hospital says it will run out of operating funds Jan. 30. But the administration of Mayor Megan Barry is intensely scrutinizing the request, especially amid a looming proposal to dramatically restructure the public hospital.

Newsmax TV

When flu season comes around each year, a familiar face from Nashville appears in homes around the country: Dr. William Schaffner. The Vanderbilt doctor has become a media darling when it comes to infectious diseases. 

Blake Farmer / WPLN

Meharry Medical College has decided to take a leading role in the future of Nashville General Hospital, organizing a working group that includes the administration of Mayor Megan Barry, school officials, ministers and labor leaders representing hospital staff.

This follows a few weeks of uncertainty after school announced this month it will relocate its third- and fourth-year medical students to an HCA hospital because business at Nashville General is so slow. 

TN Photo Services (file)

Tennessee's Medicaid program swelled to 1.5 million people after the Affordable Care Act took effect — matching an all-time high set around the year 2000 and meaning nearly a quarter of the state was on TennCare. Numbers have fallen slightly from that peak as the economy has boomed. But TennCare officials say they're finding a new normal. 

Blake Farmer / WPLN

A plan that would end Nashville's long history of running a public hospital is basically an argument that the city doesn't really need one — and that other medical centers in town already dole out far more charity care, especially as General Hospital's caseload has dwindled to 40 patients a day, operating at just a third of its capacity.

Yet those who serve the uninsured say the facility still plays a critical role.

DCSO via Facebook

Davidson County's Sheriff says closing Nashville General Hospital's inpatient services could quadruple the amount his agency has to spend on securing inmates while they receive medical care.

Blake Farmer / WPLN

Metro General Hospital has decided to defiantly resist closure, which was proposed by Mayor Megan Barry last week. In the meantime, the facility is trying to keep nurses, doctors and administrators from abandoning ship.

courtesy Williamson Medical Center

The Williamson County Commission has again turned back an effort to sell its publicly owned hospital. Off and on for years, the panel has been considering the prospect of cashing out, but this week it rejected a proposal to put the question to a referendum vote.

courtesy Wikimedia Commons

Veterans Affairs hospitals are taking a page from the pharmaceutical playbook — and reversing it. They've hired what are effectively 285 drug company representatives across the country, including one for every VA hospital in Tennessee and Kentucky. But instead of encouraging physicians to prescribe, they're often counseling doctors against giving their patients opioids.

Pages