WEOS Finger Lakes Public Radio

Brett Dahlberg

Brett is the health reporter and a producer at WXXI News. He has a master’s degree from the City University of New York Graduate School of Journalism and before landing at WXXI, he was an intern at WNYC and with Ian Urbina of the New York Times. He also produced freelance reporting work focused on health and science in New York City.
 
Brett grew up in Bremerton, Washington, and holds a bachelor’s degree from Willamette University in Salem, Oregon.
 

Opioid treatment programs in New York have not been using a state database that tracks opioid prescriptions, according to an audit from the state comptroller’s office released Monday.

New York’s I-Stop system is designed to reduce overprescription of controlled substances. It requires prescribers to record when they give a patient opioids, and it allows doctors treating people with opioid use disorder to check the database and make sure they’re not already getting the addictive drugs somewhere else.

Over $2 million of medical debt across New York state is about to be erased.

It’s due to the efforts of two friends, 70-year-old Carolyn Kenyon and 80-year-old Judy Jones, both of Ithaca, who raised $12,500 that they’ve donated to an organization called RIP Medical Debt.

Cornell University has found that a prominent professor and researcher violated federal regulations and was “reckless” in his research conduct.

A Cornell faculty committee found “by a preponderance of the evidence” that Brian Wansink falsified data, attributed authorship inappropriately and failed to obtain necessary approval for his research, provost Michael Kotlikoff said in a letter.

Ontario County will have a new sheriff next year. That was guaranteed when longtime Sheriff Phil Povero announced he would be retiring.

And in Tuesday's election, Democrat Kevin Henderson of Canandaigua won the race against Silvio Palermo of Victor.

Henderson says he had a prepared speech, but he tossed it away when he took the stage at the Canandaigua Country Club and spoke from his heart.

Open enrollment is underway for New York’s state health care marketplace.

New Yorkers who don’t get health insurance through their work or through Medicare can now enroll in a variety of plans in the state’s insurance marketplace, called New York State of Health.

The state health department said prices for most of its insurance policies are not increasing from 2018 to 2019.

Helio Health, which runs all 25 of the inpatient detox beds in Monroe County, stopped accepting appointments and moved to a walk-in-only system in August.

The change, which has not been reported until now, means there is no longer a waitlist to access inpatient detox, but it also means people might have to arrive early to score a bed at the clinic on University Avenue.

Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand is introducing a bill to expand health care coverage, she said.

At a press conference Monday at the University of Rochester Medical Center’s Highland Family Medicine Clinic, Gillibrand said the bill would raise the cap to qualify for federally funded basic health programs from twice to four times the federal poverty line.

Gillibrand, D-N.Y., contrasted her bill with what she said are efforts by the administration of President Donald Trump to reduce government health insurance coverage.

Brian Wansink, the Cornell professor who authored six articles retracted by the Journal of the American Medical Association Wednesday, has been removed from all teaching and research at the university, and will retire at the end of this academic year.

“I have been tremendously honored and blessed to be a Cornell professor,” Wansink said.

Most American adults are worried they’ll develop Alzheimer’s, but they’re also optimistic that there will be a cure for the disease in their lifetimes, according to survey results released Monday.

The nationwide survey, conducted by Harris polling on behalf of the Banner Alzheimer’s Institute and pharmaceutical companies Novartis and Amgen, also showed that most American adults want to participate in medical research.

More than a third of the respondents said they were “very willing” to be part of a study.

It’s like “delivering nutrition through the back door,” Maggie McHugh said.

McHugh is the senior nutritionist for Eat Smart New York’s Finger Lakes region. Her organization is partnering with Ontario County to encourage food bank donors to make healthier contributions.

“We provide resources and tools for community members to learn more what healthy food items that they can donate to their local food pantries are,” said McHugh.

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