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Preview: Seattle Post-Intelligencer: Health and Fitness

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Bogus doctor performed physicals at Philadelphia high school

Fri, 20 Jan 2017 19:47:18 UT

The district says it works with a nonprofit organization to make sure students get proper physicals but didn't immediately explain the vetting process for those who give exams. The school district says the district attorney, city and state agencies are investigating.



Physician assistant jailed for selling $710K in painkillers

Fri, 20 Jan 2017 18:33:29 UT

CENTRAL ISLIP, N.Y. (AP) — A New York physician assistant who pocketed $710,000 by illegally selling the painkiller oxycodone has been sentenced to five years in prison. Troyan also was ordered to surrender the $710,000 he made from the illegal drug sales.



In Minnesota, rainy-day fund may help cover insurance hikes

Fri, 20 Jan 2017 00:45:22 UT

(AP) — Minnesota would use state money to offset the health premium hikes for more than 100,000 residents under a measure legislators were considering Thursday, a novel approach as states across the country grapple with the rising costs and uncertain future of the Affordable Care Act. Even as President-elect Donald Trump plots a repeal of the law after taking office Friday, Minnesota officials from both parties agree they need to step in and help by tapping roughly $300 million in rainy day funds. Alaska's answered instability in its individual market by creating a reinsurance program last year to help insurance companies cover unexpected losses. Dayton has called to route the money through insurance companies to reduce premiums directly, saying Republicans' proposal requiring income testing and checks from the state would result in months of delays.



Former president's breathing tube indicates severe pneumonia

Thu, 19 Jan 2017 21:55:30 UT

Former President George H.W. Bush is being treated for pneumonia in intensive care at a Houston hospital where doctors are evaluating him before removing a breathing tube. When a patient is not getting enough oxygen in the blood, doctors will insert a soft plastic breathing tube into the windpipe and connect the patient to a breathing machine called a ventilator. The longer a patient has a breathing tube, the higher the risk of a secondary infection. [...] when an improving patient can follow simple commands and has a strong enough cough, doctors will remove the tube and let the sedation wear off. Coming off sedation can bring on delirium, especially for elderly patients, so doctors will monitor whether the patient is agitated and disoriented, Schwartz said. The former president wrote to President-elect Donald Trump on Jan. 10, saying that he would be unable to attend Friday's inauguration because of doctor's orders: My doctor says if I sit outside in January, it will likely put me six feet under. People diagnosed with the condition walk with shuffling steps, and brain scans suggest they have suffered small strokes. [...] they do not have the characteristic tremors of Parkinson's disease, and they do not respond to drugs for Parkinson's. Classic Parkinson's disease develops when cells that produce one of the brain's chemical messengers, called dopamine, begin to deteriorate and die. Vascular parkinsonism can closely mimic a number of other disorders, including classic Parkinson's, progressive supranuclear palsy and excessive fluid on the brain. The risk factors are the same as for stroke and heart disease: history of smoking, lack of exercise and poor diet. A: Since the condition does not respond well to drugs used to treat Parkinson's disease, treatment relies on lowering the risk factors for stroke. Preventing falls is important, so a patient may receive physical therapy to improve balance. Physical t



Researchers: Trump win alters conversation on gun violence

Thu, 19 Jan 2017 21:30:00 UT

BOSTON (AP) — Leading public health researchers and gun safety advocates concede that Republican Donald Trump's election as president changed the national conversation on firearms, but they're urging gun owners and manufacturers to be included in the effort to reduce deaths and injuries from firearms. With an estimated 300 million guns in circulation in the United States, authors of the editorial called for a "business plan" that stresses the enormous medical and social costs of firearms injuries, estimated at $230 billion annually, in contrast with a more polarizing focus on gun ownership. The editorial points to a "critical dearth" of scholarly research on the scope and causes of firearms violence, blamed in part on language Congress added to the federal budget two decades ago that the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and other agencies interpreted as a prohibition on federally funded gun research.



Report: NYPD mental health training needs better utilization

Thu, 19 Jan 2017 21:16:41 UT

NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Police Department has trained more than 5,000 police officers on how to handle mental health crisis calls but doesn't have a way to dispatch those officers when the calls come in, according to a report published Thursday. The four-day training program for officers, which began in the summer of 2015, was built off a nationally recognized instructional model, called Crisis Intervention Training, that uses patients, professionals and police officials to train officers on how to recognize signs of mental illness, respond to such calls and empathize with someone in the throes of a crisis. The department's dispatch system is unable to identify the officers who have undergone the training, so it's "random chance" on whether an officer who arrives at the scene has been trained in how to handle it, according to the report completed by the Office of the Inspector General for the NYPD.



Feds sue New York police over man's HIV discrimination claim

Thu, 19 Jan 2017 20:21:26 UT

NEW YORK (AP) — The New York Police Department violated the Americans with Disabilities Act by denying an HIV-positive man a position as an emergency dispatcher, federal prosecutors said. Raymond Parker applied for a position as a police department technician in 2013 and was given a conditional offer of employment, prosecutors said. The lawsuit said Parker, 60, was qualified for the job, which includes serving as emergency call dispatcher and performing clerical and administrative work, according to the job posting filed with it.