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Probe exposes flaws behind HealthCare.gov rollout
30 Jul 2014 at 11:40pm
Officials tell The Associated Press that a nonpartisan investigative report concludes that management failures by the Obama administration set the stage for the computer problems that paralyzed the HealthCare.gov website last fall.
$1,000 Sovaldi now hepatitis treatment of choice
29 Jul 2014 at 3:47pm
WASHINGTON (AP) ? The price is sky-high, but so is demand. A new $1,000-per-pill drug has become the treatment of choice for Americans with hepatitis C, a liver-wasting disease that affects more than 3 million.
5 food writers subpoenaed in 'pink slime' lawsuit
29 Jul 2014 at 5:55pm
Several food writers, including a New York Times reporter, have been subpoenaed by a meat producer as part of its $1.2 billion defamation lawsuit against ABC in regards to the network's coverage of a beef product dubbed "pink slime" by critics.
WHO advises no flight restrictions, low risk from Ebola: IATA
31 Jul 2014 at 2:04am
GENEVA (Reuters) - The World Health Organization is not recommending any travel restrictions or border closures due to the Ebola outbreak and there would be a low risk to other passengers if an Ebola patient flew, the airlines association IATA said on Thursday. The International Air Transport Association issued the statement after several days of consultation with the WHO and the U.N. aviation agency ICAO, following the case of a man who died of Ebola after taking an international flight from Liberia to Nigeria with a stopover at Lomé.
Sierra Leone president declares state of emergency over Ebola
31 Jul 2014 at 1:46am
By Umaru Fofana FREETOWN (Reuters) - Sierra Leone has declared a state of public emergency to tackle the worst ever outbreak of Ebola and will call in security forces to quarantine epicenters of the deadly virus, President Ernest Bai Koroma said in a statement. "I hereby proclaim a State of Public Emergency to enable us take a more robust approach to deal with the Ebola outbreak," he said in a speech late on Wednesday, adding that the measures would initially last between 60 and 90 days. "All epicenters of the disease will be quarantined." Koroma said that the police and the military would restrict movements to and from epicenters, and would provide support to health officers and NGOs to do their work unhindered, following a number of attacks on healthworkers by local communities.
Sierra Leone president declares public health emergency over Ebola
31 Jul 2014 at 1:20am
FREETOWN (Reuters) - Sierra Leone has declared a public health emergency to tackle the worst ever outbreak of Ebola and will call in security forces to quarantine epicentres of the deadly virus, President Ernest Bai Koroma said in a statement. The measures resembled a tough anti-Ebola package announced by neighbouring Liberia on Wednesday evening. Koroma also announced he was cancelling a visit to Washington for a U.S.-Africa summit next week because of the crisis. ...
AstraZeneca raises forecasts after seeing off Pfizer
31 Jul 2014 at 1:11am
By Ben Hirschler LONDON (Reuters) - AstraZeneca raised its sales and earnings forecasts for the year on Thursday, showing resilience after seeing off a $118 billion takeover approach from rival Pfizer two months ago. Second-quarter sales and earnings both beat expectations, helped by several one-off factors, including a product-related payment from Pfizer worth $200 million. Chief Executive Pascal Soriot has fought hard to demonstrate that AstraZeneca has a strong independent future and does not need the kind of mega-merger offered by its bigger U.S. rival. AstraZeneca moved to boost its lung drug franchise further on Wednesday by acquiring rights to Spanish group Almirall's lung treatments in a deal worth up to $2.1 billion.
Doctor says Australia covering up mental illness in asylum-seeker children
31 Jul 2014 at 12:55am
By Matt Siegel SYDNEY (Reuters) - A former healthcare worker at Australia's immigration detention centers said on Thursday the government asked him to cover up evidence that children held in the camps were suffering from widespread mental illness caused by their confinement. Under policies aimed at stopping asylum seekers reaching Australia's mainland by boat, migrants are sent to camps in Papua New Guinea and the South Pacific nation of Nauru where they face long periods of detention while they are processed. Peter Young, a doctor who previously supervised mental health services at the camps, said at a hearing held by the Australian Human Rights Commission that he was asked to remove figures from a report detailing the extent of the problem. "They asked us to withdraw the figures from our reporting." Refugee advocates say that long-term detention, combined with a lack of clarity on where and when the asylum seekers may be resettled, contribute to a host of mental health problems at the facilities.
Australia urged to come clean on asylum-seekers' mental health
31 Jul 2014 at 12:49am
Australia's human rights commissioner said Thursday the government must come clean about conditions at offshore asylum-seeker camps after an inquiry heard of an alleged cover-up of mental health problems. The facilities have been under the spotlight in recent weeks following reports that up to a dozen mothers had attempted suicide at a detention centre on Christmas Island, an Australian territory in the Indian Ocean. The women did so under the belief that their babies would have a better chance of being settled in Australia if they were orphans, reports said. A leading psychiatrist alleged at a national inquiry into the mandatory detention of children seeking asylum that figures showing the extent of mental health issues had been covered up by the immigration department.
Japan's smoking rate drops to record low
30 Jul 2014 at 11:45pm
Japan's smoking rate has dropped below 20 percent for the first time, according to a new survey, as a recent rise in cigarette prices helped to further discourage the habit. The proportion of adult smokers stood at 19.7 percent as of May, down 1.2 percentage points from a year earlier and the lowest rate since the survey started in 1965. The number of smokers in Japan stands at about 20.6 million, according to the study published Wednesday, which is conducted by cigarette monopoly Japan Tobacco. The overall figures put Japan roughly on par with the United States, where the Centers for Disease Control estimates that some 18.1 percent of the adult population smokes.
Liberia shuts schools as Ebola spreads, Peace Corps leaves 3 countries
30 Jul 2014 at 11:34pm
By David Lewis and Emma Farge DAKAR (Reuters) - Liberia will close schools and consider quarantining some communities, it said on Wednesday, rolling out the toughest measures yet imposed by a West African government to halt the worst outbreak on record of the deadly Ebola virus. "This is a major public health emergency. It's fierce, deadly and many of our countrymen are dying and we need to act to stop the spread," Lewis Brown, Liberia's information minister, told Reuters. "We need the support of the international community now more than ever.
World Ebola fears grow with Europe and Asia on alert
30 Jul 2014 at 11:18pm
Fears that the west African Ebola outbreak could spread to other continents grew with European and Asian countries on alert and a leading medical charity warning the epidemic was out of control. Doctors Without Borders (MSF) said the crisis gripping Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone would only get worse and warned there was no overarching strategy to handle the world's worst outbreak of the disease. US Christian charity Samaritan's Purse was temporarily withdrawing its non-essential staff from Liberia, it said, citing regional "instability and ongoing security issues". Hong Kong announced quarantine measures for suspected cases, although one woman arriving from Africa with possible symptoms tested negative, while the EU said it was ready to deal with the threat.
House approves VA health care overhaul
30 Jul 2014 at 5:45pm
WASHINGTON (AP) ? The House overwhelmingly approved a landmark bill Wednesday to help veterans avoid long waits for health care that have plagued the Veterans Affairs Department for years.
What Your Hands Can Reveal About Your Health
30 Jul 2014 at 5:36pm
SPECIAL FROM Grandparents.comYou don?t have to go to a palm reader to learn about your future. Pay attention to the state of your mitts?your nails, skin, and fingers can indicate all kinds of conditions and issues all by themselves.Discoloration under the nailA brown or black streak under the nail could be acral melanoma, a skin cancer that...
Lead in teeth holds secrets of person's origins, research shows
30 Jul 2014 at 5:11pm
By Barbara Liston ORLANDO Fla. (Reuters) - The lead in human teeth holds clues about where a person grew up and can help criminal investigators and archaeologists working with old or decomposed corpses, according to a University of Florida researcher. Because lead ore deposits around the world differ, and as young people's teeth absorb traces of the metal in the environment, the region where a person grew up can be distinguished through lead analysis of a tooth, said geologist George Kamenov. "If you were born in Europe and then came to the U.S., yes, I will be able to see that," Kamenov said. In addition to aiding authorities in identifying bodies, the analysis can help archaeologists locate human remains on an historical timeline, he said.