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first_imgCarePoint reaches new agreement with Horizon Blue CrossCarePoint Health announced that it has reached a new three-year rate agreement with Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield of New Jersey (Horizon BCBSNJ). The agreement also ends all pending litigation between CarePoint Health and Horizon BCBSNJ. Effective Oct. 1, CarePoint Health-Bayonne Medical Center, CarePoint Health-Christ Hospital in Jersey City and CarePoint Health-Hoboken University Medical Center will return to the Horizon Hospital Network.Patients should call their insurance or medical provider to confirm any information as to whether they will accept insurance.The new rate agreement means that Horizon BCBSNJ members with all products, including the NJ State Health Benefits Program (SHBP), will once again be able to access CarePoint health care facilities on an in-network basis, including elective and emergency procedures, starting October 1, 2017.“We are excited to partner with Horizon to move healthcare forward in Northern New Jersey,” said CarePoint Health CEO, Jeff Mandler. “This agreement allows CarePoint to continue to invest in our people and infrastructure while ensuring care for the most vulnerable among us.”“We’re pleased about reaching a new rate agreement with CarePoint, which will provide our members with additional options for in-network health care services,” said Allen J. Karp, Senior Vice President of Healthcare Management for Horizon. Model United Nations Club set for 2018 NYC conferenceMembers of Bayonne High School’s Model United Nations Club gathered last week with administrators and community members to thank Vice President Ronnie Sevilla of Investors Bank for the company’s $2,500 donation to the program. The donation will help to support the participation in the International Model United Nations Association’s (IMUNA) Conference in New York City in March 2018. This is the second consecutive year the club will participate in the conference.Attracting more than 5,000 participants from 75 countries, the IMUNA’s four-day conference will challenge students to learn skills in collaboration and compromise as they engage in simulated activities designed to foster an understanding of the workings of the UN and of international diplomacy. Blood Drive on September 8St. Henry’s Church will host a blood drive on Friday, September 8 from 1 to 7 p.m. A single blood donation can potentially help more than one patient. Donors can give either whole blood or specific blood components only. The process of donating specific blood components – red cells, plasma or platelets – is called apheresis.The process of blood donation is safe. A sterile needle is used once for each donor and then discarded. Blood donation process is also simple. Every blood donor is given a mini-physical, checking the donor’s temperature, blood pressure, pulse and hemoglobin to ensure it is safe for the donor to give blood. The actual blood donation typically takes less than 10-12 minutes.For more information, call St. Henry’s Church at (201) 436-0857, or email sthenryrc.org.Learn how to trap, neuter, and vaccinate outdoor catsThe City of Bayonne, in partnership with People for Animals and the Bayonne Health Department, will host a workshop through a program of Trap-Neuter-Vaccinate-Return (TNVR) that will empower residents to help outdoor cats in the community. Participants will learn how to trap cats for the purpose of having them spayed or neutered, vaccinated, and returned to their outdoor homes. Those attending the session will learn the best practices of cat colony care and the impact that TNVR can have on the community. The session will take place on Thursday, September 7, at 6 p.m. in the City Council Chambers, 630 Avenue C, Bayonne. Please RSVP to People for Animals either by phone at (973) 282-0890 ext. 222, or by e-mail at [email protected] cameras to help thwart elder abuseA state-run program that installs hidden cameras to protect the elderly from abuse is being expanded, Jeanette Beebe reported last week for NewsWorks. The Safe Care Cam, launched in December, works by lending small surveillance cameras disguised as everyday objects to New Jersey residents for up to 30 days. Previously the cameras were only available to families who had home health aides or live-in caretakers. Now, it can be used in nursing homes and assisted living facilities across the state.One in 10 Americans 60 or older have experienced some sort of elder abuse, according to the National Council on Aging. Some incidents of abuse have been caught on video and uploaded online, which prompted community outrage and activism. The State of New Jersey requires certified health aides to be supervised by nurses and employed by health agencies, but the state Board of Nursing has disciplined a third more aides this year.In 2016, more than 306 home health aides had their licenses revoked, suspended, or were disciplined by the state. The New Jersey Department of Health makes available quality assessment reports of nursing homes on its website, and Medicare.gov offers a tool to compare nursing home facilities.Charity 5K for vets takes place September 10Hope for The Warriors, an organization providing care services to veterans who served after 9/11 and their families, is returning to Secaucus in September. The group will hold its seventh annual Run For The Warriors 5K at the Harmon Meadow Holiday Inn Sept. 10. Proceeds will benefit wounded service members, veterans, and their families.Hope’s origins are in the Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune – located in North Carolina – in 2006. A badly wounded service member was returning from his overseas tour of duty and military families stationed at Lejeune took notice. They launched a race to raise funds for his benefit and for other wounded service members.The families then decided to launch the organization to continue helping injured vets. To date, Hope has served more than 13,000 service members, veterans, and military families, through programs such as clinical health and wellness, transition (helping them re-enter society after war time and find jobs), community engagement, workshops, and sports and recreation (which the annual runs fall under).The organization seeks to thank those who’ve given their service as much as possible. “Our motto is to restore a sense of self, family, and hope in these folks,” said the organization’s senior director Steve Bartomioli. “These folks volunteer to go overseas and put themselves in harm’s way to protect our way of life. We want to give back in a positive way.”The Harmon Meadow race will start at 8:45 a.m. at 300 Plaza Drive. Wounded service members and families of deceased members run for free. Discounts are also available for students, veterans, and those currently on-duty. To register for the race, visit runforthewarriors.org.City to host Coastal Cleanup day September 16After a big volunteer turnout at the city’s Earth Day Cleanup in June and many expressing interest in more cleanup events, the City of Bayonne is hosting another, this time called “Coastal Cleanup.” Residents interested in helping to remove the plastics and other waste that wash up along Bayonne’s western coast can participate from 10 a.m. to noon and meet at one of three locations. Volunteers can check in at the table in the parking lot at Rutkowski Park, the table near the boat ramp at 16th Street Park, or at a table under the covering at Veteran’s Stadium. BHS graduate now working on Helicopter Maritime SquadronSteven Ramos, a 2014 Bayonne High School graduate, has been active since joining the Navy after high school. Now a 3rd Class Petty Officer, Ramos is working with a helicopter squadron that operates some of the newest helicopter technology.Ramos is an information systems technician with the “Airwolves” of Helicopter Maritime Strike Squadron 40, based in Mayport Florida. His team operates the MH-60T Seahawk, which is used for detecting and tracking submarines, search and rescue, drug interdiction, delivering supplies, and supporting the Navy’s special operations forces. Each helicopter is nearly 65 feet long and weighs up to 23,500 pounds, while traveling over 120 miles per hour.As an information systems technician, Ramos handles computer and printer related issues. His is just one of approximately 297 positions that keep the squadron running smoothly, including the maintenance of helicopter airframes and engines, paperwork processing, handling weapons and aircraft operation.“The Navy has helped me to learn and mature so much more than I ever expected to,” said Ramos. “It helped me to meet a lot of people from all around the world. I never would have thought I’d become friends with such a diverse group of people and I look forward to traveling and meeting more as my career continues.” ×last_img read more


first_img Earlier this week, the Lieber Institute for Brain Development, a nonprofit housed at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine in Baltimore, Maryland, announced a new neuroscience research initiative that aims to tackle a gaping hole in medicine: the interplay between brain diseases and their genomic drivers among African-Americans. The goal is to better understand how brain diseases play out in this population, which has been profoundly underrepresented in neuroscience research. To build trust among African-Americans in Baltimore and eventually beyond, the venture includes a partnership with the African-American Clergy Medical Research Initiative, a group of clergy leaders in the city. African-American scientists at Lieber are already involved, but project leaders hope to engage those at other institutions as the work expands.The effort builds on Lieber’s rapidly growing brain bank, which now stands at about 3000 brains, with more than 400 new brains collected each year, all donated by next of kin. Many are from young and middle-aged people who die suddenly of suicide, drug overdose, or other causes. Although most of the brains are from people of European ancestry, more than 700 are from African-Americans. Despite growing recognition that African-Americans are underrepresented in medical research—and face discrimination and other hardships that can heighten health risks—study of brain diseases in this population have lagged behind, says Daniel Weinberger, the institute’s director.ScienceInsider spoke with Weinberger, a psychiatrist and schizophrenia researcher who came to the Lieber Institute in 2011 from the National Institute of Mental Health. 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Country New effort aims to study brain diseases in African-Americans By Jennifer Couzin-FrankelMar. 22, 2019 , 2:50 PM Click to view the privacy policy. Required fields are indicated by an asterisk (*) Q: Why is it important to study brain diseases in African-Americans in particular?A: In general, data suggest that all neuropsychiatric diagnoses are 20% more frequent in African-American communities than they are in communities of European ancestry. Alzheimer’s disease is about twice as common. Psychiatric disorders, in particular, show differences in frequency, response to treatment, and in how they manifest themselves. The [U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention] recently came out with a report that [showed] suicides among African-American children had become more frequent. That was a huge surprise.And the other thing that became clear, as these large GWA [genome-wide association] studies began to emerge—they were based almost completely on individuals of European ancestry. They’re much, much less relevant [for African-Americans]. In the schizophrenia world, which I’ve been a big part of, we can predict somewhere close to 20% [of risk based on genetics among Europeans]. But in the African-American population, it’s less than 5%. We’ve known that APOE4 [an important Alzheimer’s risk gene] is much less of a risk factor in the African-American population, even though Alzheimer’s is much more common. In many ways, the brain is the most challenging problem but it’s the one that’s least represented in this effort [to include African-American samples in medical research].This is the submerged part of the iceberg that has been left unexplored, basically.Q: If African-Americans are more likely than whites to suffer from serious mental illness, what about social factors like discrimination?A: We do extensive history taking on every donation to the repository. The team talks to the next of kin. We acquire all records that are available on the deceased—school records, hospital records. We speak to their doctors. It takes weeks. We get a lot of information about the life of the individual.There’s a lot of information now that early childhood toxic stress, however that’s defined, creates increased risk for many, many medical disorders, not just psychiatric disorders. The assumption is that this is changing the [gene expression] in many cells in the body. There’s good reason to believe that individuals who were exposed early in life to tremendous stress, that that leaves a footprint in their genome. We theoretically will be able to look at this, and how that affects gene processing in particular cells in the brain. And then—this is the holy grail—this might lead to some idea of how to rescue [others].Q: Do you feel that you have all these brains but not the resources to study them?A: That is for sure. In Nature Genetics, there was a landmark paper of sequencing from 900 African-American genomes. The take-home message there was mind-boggling: Ten percent of the African-American DNA sequence is missing from the reference sequence of the human genome, which is what’s used in every human study today.We want to catch up with a lot that has already been done in [the brains of people of European-American descent]. We want to do a lot of RNA sequencing. We’re increasingly focused on trying to identify different cells that mediate these risk-specific genetic effects. It’s a huge project.We have African-American brains from prenatal life, from early childhood. Prematurity is much more common in the African-American community. We need to explore this whole question of development in the context of genetic variation.And we have many brains with the diagnosis of schizophrenia, depression, bipolar disorder, drug abuse. There’s a wealth of questions to be asked.Q: What about the money? You’re asking for $5 million from the state of Maryland to help get this off the ground.A: The ask of the state is $2.5 million a year for 2 years. That would jump-start the generation of a lot of deep data, and I think also attract much more interest in this project.Q: Are there unique challenges in running brain genomic studies versus, say, genomic studies of the heart?A: The phenotype [what’s visible] has different levels of analysis. One is the age of the person. Another might be the diagnosis. The third level is the expression, the splicing, the altered regulation of a gene—the expression of a gene in the brain, which is the blueprint of how you build the brain and how the brain responds to the environment. There are so many parts to the brain, [so] many cells in it. We collect living cells from the people whose brains we have, and collaborate with stem cell groups around the country. There are parts of the [brain], like the dura mater [the membrane surrounding the organ], that survive for days after death. We do have living [cell] lines from these brains.There have been huge abuses of the African-American community by the biomedical community. As a result, there is a lot of distrust in the African-American community. Every brain that we get is donated by the next of kin. Getting consent and donation has to be done within 24 hours of the death. We have basically the same frequency of donation—70%—from African-American families [who are approached] that we have from European-American families. That speaks to one of the issues that has dogged this research for a while.Q: It sounds like the partnership with Baltimore clergy leaders is one way to address this. How does that work?A: [The goal is] building trust. It’s to improve possibilities for precision medicine. This train, which has left the station, may be leaving [African-Americans] behind. We convened a group of community leaders of the African-American faith-based community [in Baltimore], led by Alvin Hathaway [principal of the African-American Clergy Medical Research Initiative], an extraordinary man. We had a meeting with 23 leaders. Our hope is to put together an advisory group, which would include community leaders as well as scientists from around the country.last_img read more