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Nicholas Leider
Managing Editor
Nicholas joined TriMed in 2016 as the managing editor of the Chicago office. After receiving his master’s from Roosevelt University, he worked in various writing/editing roles for magazines ranging in topic from billiards to metallurgy. Currently on Chicago’s north side, Nicholas keeps busy by running, reading and talking to his two cats.
 - Virtual Doctor Visit

The buzzwords related to information technology and advanced communication are familiar—digital, virtual, real-time, eHealth, telemedicine. But sometimes they can be used in a way that’s a bit confusing. For example, a facility outside St. Louis is perhaps the world’s most advanced virtual hospital. But the building is real, the doctors are real, the nurses making rounds are real. It’s just the patients that are missing.

In October, Cook County, Illinois, which includes Chicago, repealed a penny-per-ounce tax on sugary beverages that had been in effect for just two months. The move, which resulted from a huge public backlash to the tax, may lead to some 600 layoffs included in a proposal from Board President Toni Preckwinkle.

 - Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky

Republican leaders in the Senate announced Nov. 14 they will include a repeal of the Affordable Care Act’s individual mandate in their tax reform proposal. After failing numerous times to repeal and replace the ACA, GOP leaders are hoping to include the healthcare reform in the tax bill.

 - Durbin on Opioid Addiction

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a public health advisory about risks associated with kratom, an herbal supplement used to treat pain and reduce opioid withdrawal symptoms.

It’s been six weeks since San Diego County public health officials declared a state of emergency due to a hepatitis A outbreak, with 544 reported cases and 20 deaths. Now, the county is postponing its outreach campaign due to a national shortage of a vaccine.

IBM founder Bill Gates has a new target for his renowned philanthropic endeavors. The billionaire announced Nov. 13 that he will donate nearly $100 million to projects focused on researching dementia and Alzheimer's disease.

 - Alex Azar

On Monday morning, President Donald Trump announced the nomination of Alex Azar to lead HHS. A former executive for pharmaceutical giant Eli Lilly, he has long been a frontrunner to replace Tom Price, who stepped down in September after criticism for using expensive chartered flights.

The tax reform bill introduced by Republicans in the U.S. House last week included a provision that could be bad news for patients receiving bad news. The GOP proposal eliminates the ability for individuals to itemize their federal income taxes to deduct medical expenses that exceed 10 percent of their total income.

 - President Donald Trump

President Donald Trump signed an executive order on the morning of Oct. 12 to ease rules on small businesses buying health insurance. With Congress failing to act on Republican promises to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA), Trump will make the unilateral move to reconfigure federal regulations.

Lori Wallace, after living nearly a year past the median survival rate for women with stage 4 metastatic breast cancer, knows she’s on borrowed time. Accepting such a reality, the mother of an 11-year-old boy is irked by the “excessive positivity” in healthcare marketing.