Health Highlights: Sept. 29, 2017
Trump's Health Secretary Resigns Over Travel Controversy Makers of Quick-Release Opioid Painkillers Must Provide Doctor Training: FDA Actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus Has Breast Cancer
Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
Trump's Health Secretary Resigns Over Travel Controversy
Tom Price, President Donald Trump's secretary of health and human services, resigned Friday afternoon in the wake of revelations he had used charter flights at taxpayers' expense.
The announcement came shortly after Trump had told reporters he considered Price a "fine man" but that he "didn't like the optics," the Washington Post reported.
"I'm not happy, I can tell you that. I'm not happy," Trump said.
Price will be replaced for the time being by Don Wright, who was announced as acting secretary. Wright had been serving as deputy assistant secretary for health and director of the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion.
In a four-page letter of resignation to Trump, Price said he regretted "that the recent events have created a distraction" from the administration's objectives. "Success on these issues is more important than any one person," the Post reported.
A one-time congressman from the Atlanta suburbs, Price served less than eight months.
The revelation of Price's use of charter jets instead of commercial ones has prompted scrutiny of other Cabinet members' travel.
Price wrote a check for $51,887.31 for his own travel costs. The total cost of his travels, including his entourage, was unclear, but could be as high as several hundred thousand dollars, the Associated Press reported.
Makers of Quick-Release Opioid Painkillers Must Provide Doctor Training: FDA
Makers of quick-release prescription opioid painkillers will have to provide doctors with training, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration says.
The aim is to reduce the number of patients who become addicted to the drugs and combat the opioid crisis in the U.S., the Associated Press reported Thursday.
The 74 manufacturers of immediate-release opioids such as Vicodin and Percocet were notified this week of the new regulation. Doctors won't be forced to participate in the training, which must include consideration of non-opioid alternatives.
Quick -release opioid painkillers account for 90 percent of all opioid painkiller prescriptions. The requirement to train doctors has been in place since 2012 for manufacturers of long-acting opioids such as OxyContin, the AP reported.
About 2 million Americans are addicted to prescription opioids, and more than 15,000 died from prescription opioid overdoses in 2015.
Actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus Diagnosed With Breast Cancer
Actress Julia Louis-Dreyfus has breast cancer.
Louis-Dreyfus, who stars in "Veep" and was a key member of "Seinfeld," revealed her diagnosis Thursday on social media. Her spokeswoman confirmed the posts, the Associated Press reported.
"The good news is that I have the most glorious group of supportive and caring family and friends, and fantastic insurance through my union," she posted on Twitter. "The bad news is that not all women are so lucky, so let's fight all cancers and make universal health care a reality."
Louis-Dreyfus' publicist said no further details would be forthcoming at this time. The actress "is incredibly grateful for the outpouring of support and well wishes."