Health & Medical News

A simple phone call can reduce suicide risk

Jul 18, 2018
JAMA Psychiatry

The latest numbers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show suicide rates continuing to climb nationwide. In New York, the CDC found that the rate has risen almost 30 percent since 1999.

People who have gone to the emergency room once for an attempted suicide are at high risk for attempting it again after their release.

Now, a study has shown a straightforward way of reducing that risk: calling those patients.

Rochester Regional Health opening new outpatient center

Jul 18, 2018
Rochester Regional Health

Rochester Regional Health cut the ribbon Wednesday on a new medical center set to open in Irondequoit.

The Riedman Health Center, in what used to be a Tops supermarket at Ridge Road and Goodman Street, will provide primary care and non-surgical services.

New campaign against gun violence launches in Rochester

Jul 17, 2018
Brett Dahlberg / WXXI News

Rochester city officials announced the launch of a new campaign to eradicate gun violence Tuesday.

Mayor Lovely Warren and Councilmember Willie Lightfoot stood flanked by city and county law enforcement officials as they spoke about the creation of the #ThinkAboutIt campaign.

A coalition that Lightfoot formed last month, ROC Against Violence, will spearhead the campaign, he said.

Opioid prescriptions down at Excellus

Jul 16, 2018

Opioid prescriptions at Monroe County’s largest health insurer have decreased, even as deaths from opioids have continued to climb.

Excellus BlueCross BlueShield’s prescribers in Rochester wrote 33 percent fewer opioid prescriptions per patient last year than in 2013, the company’s data show. Excellus corporate medical director Martin Lustick said the numbers are encouraging, but he also acknowledged a need to keep improving.


The Trump administration is suspending a federal program that sent billions of dollars from health insurers with largely healthy customers to insurers with larger numbers of customers with chronic illnesses or other pre-existing conditions.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, the federal group that oversees the program, said the payments were designed to reduce chances of insurance companies seeking out and providing coverage to only healthy patients.

Red Cross issues urgent call for blood donations

Jul 9, 2018

The American Red Cross is reporting an emergency blood shortage, and is issuing an urgent call for blood donors.

Spokesperson Patty Corvaia says the Independence Day holiday week resulted in hundreds fewer blood drives, and blood is going into hospitals at a faster rate than it’s coming in.

“We have to a have a minimum of five days supply of blood on hand at all times, in order to make sure that we have enough blood for any emergency that could happen, at a community level or at a national level,” she said.

Lindsay France / Cornell University Photography

A group of researchers at Cornell University has developed a new, faster test to determine whether bacteria are present in beach water.

Beaches are supposed to close to swimmers when bacteria levels in the water surpass state limits, but the test in use in most of the Great Lakes region takes 24 hours to return results, leaving swimmers at risk in the meantime, said Ruth Richardson, an engineering professor at Cornell University.

Rochester-area opioid deaths increase again

Jul 3, 2018

Data released by the Monroe County Medical Examiner shows opioid-related deaths keep rising in the Rochester region.

The death toll from heroin and fentanyl climbed for five of the last six years, from 11 in 2011 to 287 in 2017, according to the report, and it has more than doubled since 2015.

“We’re failing,” said Mark Assini, the town supervisor in Gates. “Our methods and our efforts have to be doubled and changed, and we have to get our arms around this. Right now we have not.”


One group representing firefighters and emergency medical personnel is hoping people leave the fireworks this July 4th up to the professionals.

John D'Alessandro, spokesman with the Fireman's Association of the State of New York, or FASNY, says even sparklers can reach 1,000 degrees and cause 3rd degree burns.

FASNY is urging common sense this holiday if people are going to use sparklers or ground-level fireworks – the legal fireworks in New York.

Rich Dunajewski / freeimages.com

As temperatures remain steady about 90 degrees, some emergency rooms in the region have seen more patients coming in with heat related illness.

Dr. Justin Mazzillo, Assistant Medical Director for the Emergency Department at Strong Memorial Hospital says it’s hard to get exact numbers since heat isn’t usually a symptom mentioned when a patient comes in, but its causes a lot of issues.

He says people need to keep tabs on what they’re drinking and sun exposure while outside.