Health

average wait time of 44 days
4:08 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

VA Says Growing Population Of Veterans Adds To Wait Time For Appointments

Credit U.S. Dept. of Veterans Affairs

Veteran Affairs officials say steady growth in the veteran population and other factors are helping to drive up wait times at the Oklahoma City VA Medical Center.

Officials discussed why veterans sometimes face lengthy waits for appointments on Tuesday, a day after a federal audit revealed new patients seeking health care at the Oklahoma City veterans facility waited an average of 44 days for a primary care appointment.

The report by the Department of Veterans Affairs also found that new patients seeking specialty care had to wait about 48 days to be seen in Oklahoma City.

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Health
3:13 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

One Man Takes A Stand — For Weeks Straight — Just To See How It Feels

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 7:31 pm

Transcript

MELISSA BLOCK, HOST:

Several recent studies claim it's much better for our health if we get on our feet and stand more. One study suggests sitting more than 11 hours a day can take a few years off your life. That's one of the reports that got the attention of Dan Kois, so he stood up. For 30 days straight. He kept a diary of his vertical month, and has written about the experience in New York Magazine. Dan joins me now in the studio. Dan, we have raised the microphones. We've pushed back the chairs. We're standing for this interview. Thanks for coming in.

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Shots - Health News
3:08 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

Switching To Newer Insulin For Type 2 Diabetes Comes At A Cost

Glargine is one of the synthetic analog forms of insulin that have largely replaced human insulin.
Adiran Black/Flickr

Many people with diabetes have switched to newer forms of insulin called analogs, because they can make the disease easier to manage. But that switch can be expensive, a study finds.

Researchers at the Yale University School of Medicine looked at insurance claim data to see how people with Type 2 diabetes were using insulin, and how much it cost.

From 2000 to 2010, the number of people with Type 2 diabetes who filled at least one prescription for insulin rose from 10 to 15 percent.

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Shots - Health News
2:35 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

Doctors Don't Know What Women Want To Know About Birth Control

Numbers represent the percent of patients and doctors who ranked each issue in their top three concerns to discuss during consultations.
Maanvi Singh/NPR

Originally published on Wed June 11, 2014 9:33 am

Women have choices in contraception, from pills and injections to intrauterine devices and the NuvaRing. But when women discuss birth control with their doctors, they may not be getting all the information they want, a survey finds.

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The Salt
2:30 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

Moms And Tykes Should Eat More Fish Low In Mercury, Says FDA

The FDA is recommending that pregnant women eat 8 to 12 ounces per week of fish such as salmon, canned light tuna, tilapia or cod.
Iakov Filimonov iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 5:49 pm

Lots of us think of fish as brain food.

But many moms-to-be and breastfeeding women have been turned off of it, in part due to concerns about the potentially harmful effects of mercury in some types of fish.

An analysis by the Food and Drug Administration and Environmental Protection Agency released Tuesday found 1 in 5 pregnant women were not eating any fish for long periods of time during pregnancy. And 75 percent of women were eating fewer than 4 ounces per week.

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Shots - Health News
1:53 pm
Tue June 10, 2014

Massachusetts Inches Toward Health Insurance For All

From December 2013 to March 2014, the public and private health insurance groups in Massachusetts reported an overall increase in health insurance enrollment by more than 215,000 people. Enrollment in private plans essentially held steady, as enrollment in the state's public plans expanded.
Center for Health Information and Analysis

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 2:31 pm

When Massachusetts passed its landmark health insurance law under Gov. Mitt Romney in 2006, no one claimed the state would get to zero — as in 0 percent of residents who are uninsured. But numbers out this week suggest Massachusetts is very close.

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Shots - Health News
10:43 am
Tue June 10, 2014

Giving School Nurses Access To Medical Records Improves Care

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 12:17 pm

School nurses today do a lot more than bandage skinned knees. They administer vaccines and medications, help diabetic students monitor their blood sugar, and prepare teachers to handle a student's seizure or asthma attack, among many other things.

"Chronic disease management is what school nurses spend most of their time doing," says Carolyn Duff, president of the National Association of School Nurses. "We do care for students in emergencies, but we spend more time planning to avoid emergencies."

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Shots - Health News
10:17 am
Tue June 10, 2014

From Genes To Fangs: Snake Venom Recipes Remain Mysterious

Saw-scaled vipers may be small, but they pack a nasty venomous punch. This one, Echis carinatus sochureki, was used in a study on snake venom.
Courtesy of Wolfgang Wüster

Originally published on Wed June 11, 2014 7:46 am

When a saw-scaled viper sinks its fangs into a person, it isn't pretty.

Toxins attack the victim's capillaries. The body launches an immune defense, as it would with an infection. But that takes time — too much time. The venom quickly dissolves the tiny blood vessels, and the body runs out of clotting materials before it can repair them.

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NPR Ed
4:15 pm
Mon June 9, 2014

Why NYC Is Afraid Of Free Lunch For All

In New York, three-quarters of all students qualify for free or reduced-price meals, but a third of those simply don't participate.
iStockphoto

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 6:45 pm

More than 30 million kids a year participate in the National School Lunch Program, getting free or reduced-price meals at school. Hunger experts believe many more qualify but don't use it because a.) their families haven't filled out the necessary paperwork or b.) they don't want to be seen as poor.

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Shots - Health News
4:05 pm
Mon June 9, 2014

A Reason To Smile: Mexican Town Is A Destination For Dental Tourism

Mexico's 2010 census counted fewer than 5,500 residents in Los Algodones, but more than 350 dentists ply their trade here, serving U.S. and Canadian patients seeking affordable procedures.
Ted Robbins NPR

Originally published on Tue June 10, 2014 9:22 am

Sitting in a dentist's chair hardly rates as a vacation. But every year, tens of thousands of people go to a tiny border town near Yuma, Ariz., that has proclaimed itself the dental capital of Mexico.

Los Algodones is a virtual dental factory. Some 350 dentists work within a few blocks of downtown. Because of the low prices and fast service, most patients come for major work.

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