No provisions in USMCA to change U.S. pharmaceutical patent laws: Lighthizer

(Reuters) – The United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement has no provisions that would force changes to U.S. laws with respect to pharmaceutical companies, U.S. Trade Representative Robert Lighthizer said on Tuesday.

“To the extent that a member (of Congress) thinks anything in here will stop you from changing laws, then we have to correct that,” Lighthizer said at a hearing of the Senate Finance Committee.

Reporting by Chris Prentice; Editing by Susan Thomas

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Bayer asks trial judge to reverse $2 billion Roundup jury verdict

(Reuters) – Bayer AG has asked a California judge to overrule a $2 billion verdict by jurors who found the company’s glyphosate-based Roundup weed killer responsible for a couple’s cancer, arguing the jury decision was not supported by evidence.

Monsanto Co’s Roundup is shown for sale in Encinitas, California, U.S., June 26, 2017. REUTERS/Mike Blake

The German drugmaker and chemicals company in court filings on Monday in Alameda County Superior Court in Oakland blamed the massive verdict on “inflammatory, fabricated and irrelevant evidence” from the couples’ lawyers.

Genetics research gets help from social media

(Reuters Health) – Researchers have harnessed the power of social media to build a genetic database, according to a new report.

The “Genes for Good” project, which turned to Facebook to recruit people to fill out surveys and send in saliva samples for DNA analysis, has thus far collected data from more than 27,000 volunteers.

Participants come from all 50 states and from diverse ancestral backgrounds, the researchers write in The American Journal of Human Genetics.

U.S. records 22 new measles cases, bringing year’s total to 1,044

(Reuters) – The United States recorded 22 new measles cases last week, bringing the year’s total number of cases to 1,044 in the worst outbreak of the disease since 1992, federal health officials said on Monday.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said here the number of cases of the highly contagious and sometimes deadly disease rose 2.2% in the week ended June 13 from the prior week. The 2019 outbreak, which has spread to 28 states, is the worst since 1992, when 2,126 cases were recorded.

WHO likely to declare Ebola an international emergency: experts

GENEVA (Reuters) – The World Health Organization (WHO) should and is likely to declare an international emergency over the Ebola epidemic in the Democratic Republic of Congo that has now spread to Uganda, experts said as a WHO advisory panel met on Friday.

A health worker wearing Ebola protection gear enters the Biosecure Emergency Care Unit (CUBE) at the ALIMA (The Alliance for International Medical Action) Ebola treatment centre in Beni, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, April 1, 2019. Picture taken April 1, 2019.REUTERS/Baz Ratner

WHO panel decides not to declare international Ebola emergency

GENEVA (Reuters) – A World Health Organization panel decided on Friday not to declare an international emergency over Congo’s Ebola outbreak despite its spread to Uganda this week, concluding such a declaration could cause too much economic harm.

Congo’s epidemic is the second worst ever, with 2,108 cases of Ebola and 1,411 deaths since last August. This week, it reached Uganda, where three cases were recorded, all in people who had arrived from Congo. Two of them died.

In a statement, the panel of 13 independent medical experts on the WHO’s Emergency Committee urged neighboring “at risk” countries to improve their preparedness for detecting and managing imported cases, “as Uganda has done”.

U.S. cities propose framework for nationwide opioid settlement talks

(Reuters) – Lawyers for counties and municipalities suing drug manufacturers and distributors over their alleged roles in the U.S. opioid epidemic on Friday pitched a novel plan that would bring all 24,500 communities nationally into their negotiations for billions of dollars in settlements.

FILE PHOTO: A bottle of prescription painkiller OxyContin, 40mg pills, made by Purdue Pharma L.D. sit on a counter at a local pharmacy, in Provo, Utah, U.S., April 25, 2017. REUTERS/George Frey/File Photo – RC1189184520

The proposal came in a motion filed in federal court in Cleveland, Ohio, where 1,850 lawsuits largely by local governments are pending accusing companies including OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma LP of fueling the opioid abuse crisis.

U.S. drugmakers file lawsuit against rule requiring drug prices in TV ads

FILE PHOTO: Used blister packets that contained medicines, tablets and pills are seen, in this picture illustration taken June 30, 2018. REUTERS/Russell Boyce/Illustration

(Reuters) – U.S. drugmakers on Friday filed a lawsuit to prevent the companies from disclosing the list price of prescription drugs in direct-to-consumer television advertisements as per a newly proposed government regulation.

The lawsuit was jointly filed by Amgen Inc, Merck & Co Inc, Eli Lilly and Co and the Association Of National Advertisers in the U.S. district court in Columbia.

Why So Many Older Americans Rate Their Health As Good Or Even Excellent

A common myth about aging is that older adults are burdened by illness and feel lousy much of the time. In fact, the opposite is usually true. Most seniors report feeling distinctly positive about their health.

Consider data from the 2017 National Health Interview Survey (the most recent available), administered by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. When asked to rate their overall health, 82% of adults ages 65 to 74 described it as excellent (18%), very good (32%) or good (32%) — on the positive side of the ledger. By contrast, 18% of this age group had a negative perspective, describing their health as fair (14%) or poor (4%).

Family sent back to DR Congo after two die of Ebola in Uganda

KAMPALA (Reuters) – Authorities repatriated the relatives of two people who died of Ebola in Uganda back to the Democratic Republic of Congo on Thursday, including a 3-year-old boy confirmed to be suffering from the disease, the Ugandan health minister said.

A health worker checks the temperature of a woman as she crosses the Mpondwe border point separating Uganda and the Democratic Republic of Congo as part of the ebola screening at the computerised Mpondwe Health Screening Facility in Mpondwe, Uganda June 13, 2019. REUTERS/Newton Nabwaya