Penn’s Community Health Worker Program Yields $2.47 for Every $1 Invested Annually by Medicaid

Every dollar spent on patients receiving support from Penn Medicine’s community health worker (CHW) program resulted in an annual return on investment (ROI) of $2.47 for every dollar invested annually by Medicaid, according to a new study published online today in Health Affairs. The savings are generated by reducing hospitalizations.

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Penn Study Paves Way for New Vaccines to Protect Infants Against Infections

A new Penn Medicine study puts researchers within closer reach of vaccines that can protect infants against infections by overcoming a mother’s antibodies, which are known to shut down immune defenses initiated by conventional vaccines. That hurdle largely explains why vaccinations for infectious diseases like influenza and measles not given until six to 12 months of age. Findings from the preclinical study were published online today in Science Translational Medicine.

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Bystander CPR Less Likely for People Living in Hispanic Neighborhoods Compared to Non-Hispanic Neighborhoods

People living in predominately Hispanic neighborhoods are less likely to receive CPR from a bystander following an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest compared to people living in non-Hispanic neighborhoods, researchers from Penn Medicine and the Duke University of School of Medicine reported in the journal Circulation. This same group also had a lower likelihood of survival.

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Direct-to-Consumer Fertility Tests Confuse and Mislead Consumers, Penn Study Shows

Direct-to-consumer hormone-based “fertility testing” for women is viewed by consumers as both an alternative, empowering tool for family planning, and a confusing and misleading one, according to the results of a new study from Penn Medicine. Findings from the small, first-of-its-kind ethnographic study reinforce the need for consumer education around the purpose and accuracy of the tests, which have seen increasing interest in recent years due to the low cost and widespread availability. The study was published in the journal of Social Science and Medicine.

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When Automotive Assembly Plants Close, Deaths from Opioid Overdoses Rise

Closing of local automotive assembly plants may lead to increases in deaths from opioid overdose, according to a study led by researchers at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and the Massachusetts General Hospital. The findings highlight fading economic opportunity as a driving factor in the ongoing national opioid epidemic, and build on previous research that links declining participation in the labor force to increased opioid use in the U.S. The findings are published today in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Genetic Breakthrough Identifies Heart Failure Risk in African and Latino Americans

Findings may inform genetic screening test for patients at risk and medically under-served

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People in Counties with Worse Economies Post-Recession Are More Likely to Die from Heart Disease

Communities in the United States that experienced the most economic distress in the wake of the Great Recession saw a significant increase in death rates from heart disease and strokes among middle-aged people, according to a new multi-institution study led by researchers at Penn Medicine.

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