Marlene Harris-Taylor

Ways to Connect

Updated at 11:14 a.m., Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Cleveland-area hospitals are ramping up coronavirus testing and area residents are responding in droves.

Cleveland Clinic and University Hospitals opened a new drive-thru testing center, at the UH Landerbrook Health Center in Mayfield Heights on Tuesday. This is in addition to the original site which opened Saturday near University Circle.

Updated 5:00 p.m., Thursday, March 12, 2020

Cleveland Clinic can now test for the coronavirus without sending specimens to an outside lab.

Clinic officials called this a game changer because they can now get tests results in hours, instead of waiting days.  The clinic’s pathology lab director Brian Rubin said they are able to run about 500 specimens a day and hope to ramp up to 1000 per day by next week.

There are currently no confirmed cases of coronavirus in Ohio, but health officials are preparing for a possible outbreak in the state. Nursing homes, with large senior populations, will likely be ground zero, based on what has happened in other states.

Summit County Judge Alison McCarty put herself under self-quaratine after returning from Italy.
Alison McCarty / Facebook

A Summit County Common Pleas judge has decided to self-quarantine after recently returning from Italy, where there are several hundred reported cases of the coronavirus and multiple deaths.

The Trump Administration is encouraging Ohio and other states to adopt a new federal proposal that would cap Medicaid spending and potentially save money.

State lawmakers have not indiciated if Ohio's Medicaid program will embrace block grants as an alternate way to pay for the health insurance program.

Proponents say the block grants will provide more flexibility for states. Critics say the plan, which was rolled out last week, would simply pass costs along to low-income recipients and might discourage them from getting medical care.

Updated: 11:28 am Friday January 24, 2020

The Cleveland Clinic has begun screening all patients who have traveled to China for symptoms of the coronavirus, according to a spokesperson. MetroHealth confirmed Friday that they are also screening patients for symptoms if they've been to China in the past two weeks. University Hospitals reports they are working on a travel screening protocol for their ERs, as well as putting out guidance for clinicians on screening and patient/employee safety. 

Private insurance companies in Ohio are now required to cover doctor visits over the phone or on the computer.

The recently approved state budget includes a provision requiring insurance companies to cover remote doctor visits called telemedicine.

Gov. Mike DeWine (R) signed the two-year budget bill July 18. Authorization of telehelath coverage is just one of the many state programs the sweeping $69 billion document covers.

Solon resident Jodi Creasap Gee had just relocated to the Cleveland area from Missouri with her husband and three kids when her 5-year-old daughter cut her foot. 

The house was still in disarray and the kids were playing when her daughter came into the kitchen screaming, Creasap Gee said.

“There was just a trail of blood behind her. Her foot’s all bloody and I’m going, ‘oh no.' I don’t even know where to go because we just moved here, and it’s a Sunday,” she said.

The State Medical Board of Ohio has delayed  adding autism spectrum disorder and anxiety to the list of qualifying conditions for the medical marijuana program.

The board met June 12 in Columbus to consider adding several new medical conditions to the program.

The 12-member board rejected petitions to include depression, insomnia and opioid use disorder in Ohio’s medical cannabis program, said board spokesman Tessie Pollack. However, the board tabled the vote on anxiety and autism spectrum disorder, Pollack said.

Ohio employees would have the right to sue if forced to have flu shots or other vaccines, under a new proposal being considered by state lawmakers.

The Ohio House bill would prohibit employers from firing or refusing to hire employees who object to immunizations. Employees could object to vaccinations because of medical reasons like allergies, or because of philosophical or religious beliefs.

The recent passage of the so-called "Heartbeat Bill" has caused some confusion about the legality of abortion in Ohio. Gov. MIke DeWine signed the legislation into law last month, but it does not take effect until July. The ACLU and other organizations have sued, hoping to prevent the law from going into effect. Morning Edition host Amy Eddings spoke with Be Well Health reporter Marlene Harris-Taylor about the current realities of abortion access in Ohio.

Let's start with the facts about this new law. How does it does it work?

The State Medical Board of Ohio may soon approve physicians to prescribe medical marijuana to treat anxiety and some symptoms of autism. Anxiety and autism were two of 110 petitions submitted to the board this year seeking approval for tretment with medical cannabis. A local physician was on the board and helped make the decisions. Be Well health reporter Marlene Harris-Taylor spoke with the doctor, Dr. Ted Parran, and joined Morning Edition host Amy Eddings to break down what this preliminary approval means for Ohioans.

pride flag
Karen Desuyo / Flickr

A national survey finds LGBTQ Midwesterners and their families are more likely to receive public assistance than non-LGBTQ people.

When you visit the Cleveland Clinic emergency department on the main campus, a large sign directs you toward a metal detector.

The clinic has its own police force and an officer inspects all bags and backpacks and then instructs you to walk through the metal detector. In some cases, a metal wand is used.

Officers confiscate anything they consider a weapon – from a pack of matches to pepper spray or handguns.

Children with toxic lead exposure will soon have fewer roadblocks to qualify for Ohio’s Early Intervention program.

State lawmakers on the Joint Committee on Agency Rule Review today paved the way for the Department of Developmental Disabilities to automatically include children with elevated blood levels in the program.  This will include children with a blood lead level of 5 micrograms per deciliter or higher, said Gabriella Celeste, the policy director of Case Western Reserve University’s Shubert Center for Child Studies.

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