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China lifts quarantine after man dies of plague
23 Jul 2014 at 10:27pm
BEIJING (AP) ? A nine-day quarantine imposed on parts of a northern Chinese city where a man died of bubonic plague has been lifted, China's official news agency reported Thursday.
Head of troubled CDC anthrax lab has resigned
23 Jul 2014 at 11:34am
NEW YORK (AP) ? The head of the government lab that potentially exposed workers to live anthrax has resigned, an agency spokesman said Wednesday.
Judges in health care rulings vote party line
23 Jul 2014 at 12:20am
WASHINGTON (AP) ? In rapid succession, six federal judges on two appeals courts weighed in on a key component of President Barack Obama's health care law. Their votes lined up precisely with the party of the president who appointed them.
South Korea confirms hog foot-and-mouth outbreak
23 Jul 2014 at 10:58pm
South Korea has confirmed a case of foot-and-mouth disease at a hog farm, the country's first outbreak in more than three years, the agriculture ministry said in a statement on Thursday. The case comes as Asia's fourth-largest economy strives to contain a six-month outbreak of bird flu, which has pushed pork prices to multi-year highs due to demand for alternative meat. Testing confirmed a foot-and-mouth case at a hog farm in Uiseong county, more than 250 km (155 miles) southeast of Seoul, said statements from the ministry and the Gyeonsangbuk-do provincial government. The pork imports are already high after South Korea's worst nationwide outbreak of foot-and-mouth in 2010-2011 led to the culling of a third of the hog population.
Surgeons remove 232 teeth from Indian teenager
23 Jul 2014 at 10:55pm
Ashik Gavai, 17, sought medical help for a swelling on the right side of his lower jaw and the case was referred to the city's JJ Hospital, where they found he was suffering from a condition known as complex odontoma, head of dentistry Sunanda Dhivare-Palwankar told AFP. The youngster's father, Suresh Gavai, said that the family had been worried that Ashik's swelling was a cancerous growth. "I was worried that it may turn out to be cancer so I brought him to Mumbai," Gavai told the Mumbai Mirror newspaper. "I think it could be a world record," she said.
Australian injecting room upholds fight against AIDS epidemic
23 Jul 2014 at 10:46pm
Nestled among the bars and strip clubs of Sydney's Kings Cross is a service which not only saves lives, but continues the pragmatic approach which prevented a HIV epidemic among drug-users in Australia. Behind a nondescript shopfront is the Sydney Medically Supervised Injecting Centre -- the only place in the southern hemisphere where users can inject heroin and other drugs under the care of registered nurses. "We know the evidence behind needle syringe programmes and the benefits they have in terms of prevention," says the centre's medical director Marianne Jauncey. "In Australia, for instance, they have very clearly prevented an epidemic of HIV among people who inject drugs.
China reopens town sealed after plague death
23 Jul 2014 at 10:45pm
A Chinese town sealed off after a man died of plague re-opened on Thursday after authorities found no further cases of the illness, state media said. Authorities barred 30,000 people living in Yumen in the northwestern province of Gansu from leaving, while road blocks prevented others from entering, after a 38-year-old died from plague last week. "We have not discovered any new plague cases," the state-run China News service cited Gansu's health bureau as saying. It added that authorities had exterminated rodents and fleas in designated quarantine zones, while 151 close contacts of the man had been kept in isolation for nine days without showing symptoms.
India's Ipca Labs halts shipments to U.S. after FDA concerns
23 Jul 2014 at 10:29pm
India's Ipca Laboratories Ltd said it has temporarily suspended shipments to the United States from one of its drug ingredient manufacturing plants after the U.S. Food and Drug Administration expressed concerns regarding the unit. The shipment halt from the company's Ratlam manufacturing facility located in central India will also impact Ipca's U.S. drug exports from its Silvassa and Indore plants, where the company makes drugs using ingredients from its Ratlam plant, Ipca said in a statement on Thursday. Ipca said the FDA issued it a so-called "Form 483," a letter in which the agency typically outlines concerns discovered during inspections.
U.S. health insurers to pay $330 million in premium rebates
23 Jul 2014 at 9:03pm
(Reuters) - U.S. health insurers will send out about $330 million in rebates to employers and individuals this summer under President Barack Obama's healthcare law, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services said on Thursday. The law, often called Obamacare, requires insurance companies to refund customers when they spend less than 80 percent or 85 percent of healthcare premiums they collect for medical care. The rebates will go to about 6.8 million people and have a value of about $80 per family. They are to be sent by Aug. 1 either directly to consumers or to the employer providing the health coverage, who is required to pass the savings onto employees, the agency said in a report.
Arizona inmate takes nearly two hours to die in botched execution
23 Jul 2014 at 7:56pm
By David Schwartz PHOENIX (Reuters) - An Arizona inmate took almost two hours to die by lethal injection on Wednesday and his lawyers said he "gasped and snorted" before succumbing in the latest botched execution to raise questions about the death penalty in the United States. The execution of convicted double murderer Joseph Wood began at 1:52 p.m. at a state prison complex, and the 55-year-old was pronounced dead just shy of two hours later at 3:49 p.m., the Arizona attorney general's office said. The appeal, which said the procedure violated his constitutional right to be executed without suffering cruel and unusual punishment, was denied by Justice Anthony Kennedy of the U.S. Supreme Court. "Arizona appears to have joined several other states who have been responsible for an entirely preventable horror: a bungled execution.
Childhood traumas more common in military members
23 Jul 2014 at 7:18pm
CHICAGO (AP) ? Childhood traumas are more common among military members and veterans than among civilians, according to a new study. Researchers say the results support the notion that for some, enlistment serves as an escape from troubled upbringings.
Colorado theater gunman's lawyers challenge firearms analysis
23 Jul 2014 at 7:08pm
By Keith Coffman DENVER (Reuters) - Lawyers defending accused theater gunman James Holmes challenged the reliability of firearms analysis on Wednesday, despite conceding that their client was solely responsible for the 2012 massacre that killed 12 moviegoers. In a hearing before Arapahoe County District Court Judge Carlos Samour, public defenders sought to have expert ballistics testimony precluded from the onetime neuroscience graduate student's murder trial. Dale Higashi, an agent with the Colorado Bureau of Investigation, said all the bullet fragments and shell casings that he analyzed from the crime scene could be traced to three of the weapons belonging to Holmes. Defense lawyers argued that firearms analysis is subjective, and not based on quantifiable scientific fact.
Sterling marriage 'stress' at issue as L.A. Clippers trial nears end
23 Jul 2014 at 6:57pm
By Eric Kelsey LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - Los Angeles Clippers owner Donald Sterling's bid to block the $2 billion sale of the NBA team in a probate trial entered its final stretch on Wednesday when his attorneys sought to prove his estranged wife improperly seized control of the franchise. Sterling's attorneys called only two witnesses during the emotionally charged trial that will determine whether the 80-year-old real estate billionaire' s wife had the authority to sell the Clippers to former Microsoft Corp chief executive Steve Ballmer. A neurologist called by Sterling's attorneys testified that Sterling, who has been banned by the NBA for racist remarks, was under undue stress from his wife Shelly Sterling, 79, while taking the mental exams that declared him incapable of managing his business affairs. "There is a stress in the relationship between Mr. and Mrs. Sterling, and you wouldn't want that stress to impact a mental status investigation," neurologist Jeffrey Cummings told Los Angeles Superior Court.
Australian Medical Board bans prominent euthanasia doctor
23 Jul 2014 at 6:41pm
Prominent Australian right-to-die doctor Philip Nitschke on Thursday vowed to continue giving advice on how to end life after the Australian Medical Board used emergency powers to suspend him. The ruling -- an interim measure pending the outcome of an inquiry -- follows the suicide of Perth man Nigel Brayley who died in May after communicating with Nitschke. Brayley died after taking euthanasia drug Nembutal, which he illegally imported. The medical board said Nitschke, the founder of euthanasia group Exit International, had a duty of care to recommend psychiatric help for Brayley.
San Francisco approves soda tax for November ballot
23 Jul 2014 at 6:18pm
By Jennifer Baires SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) - San Francisco city leaders have approved a measure for the November ballot that would place a two-cents-per-ounce municipal tax on sodas and other sugary beverages, hoping to become the first major city to successfully impose such a levy. Among them have been Richmond, California, across the bay from San Francisco, where a penny-an-ounce tax was defeated after a multimillion-dollar campaign by the American Beverage Association. San Francisco's plan, which was approved on Tuesday night by a 6-4 vote of the board of supervisors, would be applied to any nonalcoholic, sweetened drink with more than 25 calories per 12 ounces. "I think the nation is watching what happens here," said John Maa, a surgeon on the board of directors at two organizations that support the measure, San Francisco Medical Society and American Heart Association.