WBUR Staff

State House News Service

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Senate Reaches Compromise On Partial-Fill Prescriptions

October 02, 2015

The provision was included in a Senate bill aimed at preventing substance abuse and curbing the scourge of heroin and other opiates, which the Department of Public Health blamed for 1,256 accidental deaths last year in Massachusetts.

Opt-In Substance Abuse Screening Amendment Fails

October 01, 2015

A proposal to implement substance abuse screening for seventh and 10th grade students failed in the state Senate debate Thursday.

Gov. Baker Pitches Energy Bill To Lawmakers

September 29, 2015
Gov. Charlie Baker testifies at a hearing regarding two energy bills at the State House in Boston Tuesday. (Charles Krupa/AP)

Gov. Baker urged lawmakers to support his bills to expand the development of solar and hydroelectric power in Massachusetts.

Housing Production Pitched As Economic Imperative At Hearing

September 29, 2015
The Watermark Seaport, a residential building, is undergoing construction. (Hadley Green for WBUR).

By 2040, Massachusetts will need about half a million additional residential units, mostly in urban areas, analysts told lawmakers Tuesday.

MGH Settles Drug Theft Case For $2.3 Million

September 29, 2015

The hospital has agreed to pay the United States $2.3 million to resolve allegations that lax controls enabled MGH employees to divert controlled substances such as oxycodone for personal use.

Senators Detail Opioid Bill, Plan To Debate It Next Week

September 24, 2015

The bill is expected to require schools to screen students for signs of addiction, encourage alternatives to opioids for pain management, and allow patients to limit their own access to the addictive drugs.

Baker Expects ‘Full Answer’ On Green Line Extension By Thanksgiving

September 17, 2015
Passengers board an MBTA Green Line in Boston earlier this summer. (Steven Senne/AP)

The cost estimate of the long-promised trolley extension rose from roughly $2 billion last December to nearly $3 billion this spring — throwing the project into flux.

House Chair: Ride-Hailing Bill Could Also Reshape Taxi Laws

September 17, 2015
Taxi drivers sit during a hearing Tuesday at the State House on the regulation of ride-hailing companies such as Uber and Lyft. (Steven Senne/AP)

Citing the patchwork of cab regulations from city to city, a House lawmaker who will play a significant role in shaping a bill to regulate ride-hailing companies said “Modernizing the taxi industry would be something we’re investigating.”

Attorney With Kendall Square Ties Named New CEO At Mass. Life Sciences Center

September 15, 2015
Travis McCready will be the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center's second ever CEO. (State House News Service)

Travis McCready, an attorney with experience working with tech companies and grant-making, will become the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center’s second ever CEO.

Health Connector Sees Rate Hikes For Some, Reductions For Others

September 10, 2015

Those enrolled in unsubsidized health insurance through the Health Connector will see hikes of up to 9.3 percent, while those subsidized plans will see modest decreases.

Baker: Mass. Open To Role On Refugees, But Wants Clear Expectations

September 10, 2015

Gov. Charlie Baker reiterated his stance on Thursday that Massachusetts would be open to a discussion about accepting refugees from Syria.

Mass. Adopts Final ICU Nurse Staffing Rules

June 10, 2015

The 2014 nurse staffing law will apply to burn units and intensive care for newborns along with intensive care units for adults.

Gov. Baker Adds Voice To Hundreds At Opioid Hearing

April 02, 2015

It was the fourth and final public listening session before Gov. Charlie Baker’s opioid abuse task force prepares to issues recommendations to the governor in May.

Connector Gains New COO, Corner Office Adviser

March 12, 2015

Vicki Coates, a former vice president of dental management at DentaQuest, starts on Monday as chief operating officer. Patricia Wada, who has worked on state information technology projects, will take the job of special assistant to the governor for project delivery.

Gov. Baker Fills 2 Connector Board Seats

March 12, 2015

Gov. Charlie Baker named insurance executive Mark Gaunya and business consultant Rina Vertes to serve on the Massachusetts Connector Authority Board.

Baker Deputies Outline Plan To Tame MassHealth Costs

March 05, 2015

The bulk of the savings — about 65 percent — come from what officials are describing as “cash management,” a budgeting technique partly inherited from the Patrick administration that will push off $456 million in payments to the next fiscal year.

Groups Resist Baker Push On MassHealth

February 09, 2015

Groups representing people dependent on state health insurance programs are resisting Gov. Charlie Baker’s push for authority to make major changes in the MassHealth program.

Quincy Medical Center’s Closure Set For Friday

December 24, 2014

Local elected officials have criticized Steward for the speed with which the for-profit company has moved to close the hospital after it claimed in November that it suffered financial losses and a decreasing number of patients at the Quincy hospital.

With Late-Term Order, Gov. Patrick Carves Out Money For Public Art

December 10, 2014
One of the new public murals created in Boston. (Zoe Sobel/WBUR)

The order devotes .5 percent of the cost of construction and renovation projects on state-owned property in Boston and “gateway cities” to the preservation or creation of public art, up to $250,000.

State, Feds Reach Five-Year, $41.4B Health Care Accord

November 01, 2014

The Patrick administration early Friday evening announced a five-year health care deal with the federal government worth $41.4 billion, which will succeed a three-year $26.75 billion waiver agreement that expired June 30.

Mass. Lawmakers Hear Calls For Ebola Training

October 16, 2014
A licensed clinician participates in a CDC training course in Alabama earlier this month for treating Ebola patients. (Brynn Anderson/AP)

As nurses raised alarms that they are untrained and ill equipped to handle cases of Ebola virus, Massachusetts hospital officials said Thursday that the health crisis emerging from West Africa demands a unique response.

SJC Sets ‘Presumption’ Of Misconduct In Dookhan-Related Guilty Pleas

March 05, 2014

The Supreme Judicial Court ruled Wednesday that defendants seeking to withdraw guilty pleas because their cases were handled by disgraced former state chemist Annie Dookhan must indicate they would have insisted on a trial if they knew about her malfeasance.

Coakley: Dookhan ‘Appeared To Be Proud’ Of Her Work

September 28, 2012

According to Attorney General Martha Coakley, Annie Dookhan may have had professional pride in mind when she allegedly misidentified drug lab evidence.

Amid Crime Lab Crisis, DPH Commissioner Resigns

September 17, 2012

Department of Public Health Commissioner John Auerbach offered his resignation over the weekend and Gov. Deval Patrick accepted it on Monday.

Improper Drug Testing Leads To Closure Of State Crime Lab

August 30, 2012

State police discovered a chemist failed to follow protocols in drug testing, potentially exposing thousands of drug convictions to legal challenges.

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