News Round-up: WHO Lists 13 Challenges Facing the World of Health Care in the Net Decade; Minimum Wage Increase can Prevent Suicides; and More

In this week’s edition of DocWire’s Homepage round-up: WHO published a list of 13 urgent health challenges facing the world over the next decade; there exists a significant gender gap between women publishing papers in biomedical journals compared to their male counterparts; Medicaid expansion is associated with a lower rate of opioid overdose deaths; and a $1 raise in minimum wage may attenuate the US suicide rate.

WHO Lists Top 13 Urgent Health Challenges Facing the World Over the Next Decade

This week, World Health Organization (WHO) published a list of 13 urgent health challenges facing the globe over the next 10 years. The list was curated by world health experts, and according to WHO “reflects a deep concern that leaders are failing to invest enough resources in core health priorities and systems.” A few of the challenges detailed included: addressing climate crisis, battling health care inequality, and investing in health workers.

Study Finds Significant Gender Disparity in the Number of Women Physicians Publishing Papers in Biomedical Journals

There exists a significant gender gap between the number of women physicians publishing biomedical papers compared to their male counterparts, according to a study which appeared in the journal Family Practice. The researchers wrote of this finding that “The under-representation of women in articles published by general internal medicine journals, in articles from the non-Western world and in systematic reviews and trials should be addressed.”

Medicaid Expansion May Reduce Opioid Overdose Deaths

Medicaid expansion is associated with a lower rate of opioid overdose deaths, according to the findings of a study published last week in JAMA Network Open. In this study, researchers collected data from 3,109 counties within 49 states (excluding Alaska) and the District of Columbia from January 2001 to December 2017 comprising a total of 52,853 county-years. According to the results of the study, Medicaid expansion was associated with a 6% lower rate of total opioid overdose deaths juxtaposed with the rate in non-expansion states.

Minimum Wage Increases May Reduce US Suicide Rates

A $1 increase in state-level minimum wage appears to attenuate suicide rates by more than 5% among workers with a high school degree or less, according to the findings of a recent study published in the Journal of Epidemiology & Community Health. To conduct this study, the researchers investigated the differences between the effective state and federate minimum hourly wage for each month from 1990 to 2015 in all 50 states and Washington, DC among for adults aged 18-64 based on the legislative bill that made that wage effective as law, and this study measure lagged by one year.