This week in health care

Knight Cancer Center Building

Wildfire smoke, email hacks and “telabortion.” It’s all in our healthcare roundup.

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Long-awaited OHSU building opens 

OHSU’s 320,000 square-foot Knight Cancer Research Building, designed by SRG Architects, opens to the public on September 8. The building will house up to 650 cancer researchers in a collaborative environment that features a 200-seat auditorium and lab space, and looks way cooler than your office. It should go without saying, but the office was built without carcinogenic materials.  

Science and digital health models reshape abortion and contraception landscape

A Portland-area “TelAbortion” study is part of a sweeping digital health revolution that could upend the politics of abortion and contraception.

Health hack

Staff email accounts at Legacy Health may have been caught up in a phishing scam, potentially compromising the sensitive data of 38,000 patients. Names, dates of birth, health insurance, billing and medical information, and yes, social security numbers, might have been involved.

Insurance for the insurers

Portland-based insurance carrier Moda Health is talking to a strategic partner about a potential capital infusion, according to The Lund Report. The investment could resuscitate the aggressive growth plans the company shelved when the federal government failed to pay billions it owed insurers under the Affordable Care Act.  

A cooler hotline

In a novel suicide prevention effort, the Central Oregon Health Council recently partnered with the San Francisco–based Institute on Aging to bring a “friendship line” to lonely seniors. This isn’t your typical suicide hotline: they’ll call you first sometimes, and you can call the “warmline” just to chat.

Smoke signals

Oregon continues to choke on secondhand wildfire smoke from nearly every point of the compass. The Department of Environmental Quality issued an advisory for the first half of the week urging people to avoid outdoor activities.

 An opportunity to talk rural health care

Rural Oregon significantly lags behind urban areas when it comes to healthcare. A conference slated for October aims to tackle that challenge by convening policy makers, providers and consumers. Plus, a weekend in Bend has got to be good for your health.

…And public health in general

The state’s doctors will gather at the Oregon Medical Association conference on September 29. An ambitious schedule spotlights gender bias, opioids and firearms.