Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay:
FDA Seeks to Increase Number of Generic Drugs
New measures to increase the number of generic prescription drugs available to Americans were announced Tuesday by the Food and Drug Administration.
The agency will now give priority reviews to new generic drugs until there are at least three on the market, the Associated Press reported.
That number tends to trigger sharp price decreases, up to to 85 percent off the brand name price.
The FDA also published its first list of brand name drugs that are no longer protected by a patent but don’t yet have generic competitors, the AP reported.
Two More Plague Cases in New Mexico
Two newly-confirmed cases of plague in New Mexico bring the total number of cases so far this year in the state to three, health officials say.
Plague is caused by the Yersinia pestis bacterium, which people can get if they are bitten by flea-ridden rodents. Althogh plague decimated medieval Europe, it is now rare in the United States and is easily treated with antibiotics.
The two recent cases involved two women, ages 52 and 62. The previous case occurred in a 63-year-old man, The New York Times reported.
All three patients were treated at Santa Fe-area hospitals and released after a few days, according to Paul Rhien, a state health department spokesman.
Plague is not unusual in New Mexico. Every year for the last few years, a few people in the state have contracted plague. There has been one death, The Times reported.