Caduceus, a symbol of medicine and health care | Nicole Lunger/Missouri Business Alert

Health Care Checkup: Grants to help hospitals hire, expand primary care



Caduceus, a symbol of medicine and health care | Nicole Lunger/Missouri Business Alert
Nicole Lunger/Missouri Business Alert

Taking the Pulse

Abortion waiting period among overrides of Nixon vetoes

Among the 47 line-item vetoes and eight bill strike-downs reversed by Missouri’s House and Senate last week was the proposal to enact a 72-hour waiting period for abortions in the state with no exceptions for rape or incest. As a result, the new waiting period (the previous one was 24 hours) will go into effect 30 days after the override vote. Planned Parenthood St. Louis Region, which operates the only licensed abortion clinic in the state, has not said whether it will challenge the new waiting period in court.

Biotech research park wins 25-year tax abatement

Oxford on the Blue, a $1.3 billion biotech research park planned for Kansas City’s south side, will move ahead with the help of a 25-year tax abatement. The Kansas City Council approved the abatement for the 344-acre project, set for 100 percent for the first 10 years and 50 percent for the following 15, though the decision was not unanimous. Two council members went against the abatement while supporting the project overall, saying such abatements should be reserved for the city’s more blighted areas. Oxford on the Blue is expected to contain three million square feet of mixed-use facilities, most of them office space, and will take approximately 25 years to fully complete.

HHS grants to help Missouri hospitals expand primary care

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services awarded grants totaling $6 million to 25 health care facilities in the state of Missouri, including four in St. Louis. The money is part of a nationwide effort to expand primary care access in health care centers through the Affordable Care Act. For Missouri, that is expected to mean as many as 81 new full-time jobs and the chance to serve an additional 28,000 patients in the next year, according to HHS.

Shots in the Arm

Euclises Pharmaceuticals, a biotech startup working on cancer treatments, closed a round of Series A funding for $1.3 million. The money will reportedly go toward preparing clinical trials.

Another St. Louis-based biotech company, Mediomics, received a $970,000 grant from the National Cancer Institute to continue work on its Pincer platform for testing quantities of antibodies.

Numbers of the Week: 48 and 32

The percentage decrease in uninsured patients seen and increase in Medicaid patients admitted, respectively, for Hospital Corporation of America health centers in the first half of 2014 compared to last year. HCA operates the largest chain of hospitals in the nation, including 10 medical facilities in Missouri. The numbers were so strong in the five Medicaid-expanded states HCA does business in that, according to a recent PricewaterhouseCoopers report, the company “revised its earnings outlook to account for better-than-expected revenue from health reform.”

Tweet of the Week

“PQ” in this case means “previous question,” a motion that can be used to end a debate on the Missouri legislative floor — and was used in the Senate for the first time in seven years to end debate on the abortion wait period override.

 


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