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South Korea is contending with the biggest Middle East respiratory syndrome, or MERS, outbreak outside the Middle East.

On a recent afternoon, Brittany Combs drove a white SUV through a neighborhood at the northern end of Austin, Indiana. In the back of her vehicle, there were hundreds of sterile syringes, each in a plastic wrapper.

"Anybody need clean needles today?" she shouted out the window at people sitting on front porches or walking down the street. When Combs, a nurse with the Scott County Health Department, got takers, she made sure they had a unique ID card before opening up the hatch and handing each of them a week's worth of syringes.

It was a beautiful Saturday in the fall of 2005. The leaves in Cincinnati were changing colors, and Lisa Smith had just finished watching her son's soccer game.

She ran some errands, including something she'd been meaning to do for a week — get a flu shot. She stopped by her local pharmacy.

She didn't think about the shot again until a few days later, when she woke up feeling a bit strange. She had an odd tickle in her throat and her leg muscles were sore.

"Almost like I'd been exercising," she says.

Listeria monocytogenes
Centers For Disease Control And Prevention

Blue Bell Creameries says it has entered a voluntary agreement with the Alabama Department of Public Health that includes requiring the company to inform the state whenever there is a positive test result for listeria in its products or ingredients.

The Alabama agreement is similar to those the company reached last month with regulatory agencies in Texas and Oklahoma. Blue Bell has plants in the three states.

For years, Suzanne Petroni, senior director at the International Center for Research on Women, would speak — backed by mountains of evidence she studies — about the number one cause of death among women around the world: maternal mortality.

Then, in September, 2014, the World Health Organization released its report on "Health for the World's Adolescents: A Second Chance in the Second Decade."

The American wing of the Young Men's Christian Association — a worldwide organization founded in London in 1844 — launched the first basketball teams and group swim lessons in the U.S., popularized exercise classes and created the oldest summer camp still in operation, the YMCA's historians tell us.

This week, I addressed a grab bag of questions related to insurance coverage of hearing aids, doctors who drop out of a plan midyear and what happens if you receive subsidies for exchange coverage but learn later on you were eligible for Medicaid all along.

My doctor is leaving my provider network in the middle of the year. Does that unexpected change mean I can switch to a new plan?

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On a recent trip to Chicago, Patti Broyles felt like she was looking at the world from the bottom of a fish bowl.

"This weather was really cold and rainy and I had a lot of pressure in my sinus areas," Broyles says.

Since she was nowhere near her primary care doctor in Dallas, she called Teladoc, the largest telemedicine provider in the U.S., for advice. Patients whose employers or insurers have deals with the Dallas-based company can call any time and be connected with a physician on duty within minutes.

Want to eat food that's fresh, local and cooked from scratch? Consider a retirement home. Once known for bland, institutional fare, hundreds of retirement communities around the nation now tout their restaurant-like dining experiences.

One of those is Bethlehem Woods in La Grange Park, Ill. Resident Marge Healy counts on having dinner with the same group of friends every evening.

"We're almost like a family," she says, as her friends nod in agreement.

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