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Everything You Should Know About Bereavement at Christmas
 

Everything You Should Know About Bereavement at ChristmasIf you, or someone you know, has lost someone that you love, there are some really important things that you should know about loss at Christmas time.When you install a new program on a computer, while this new program is making alterations to your system then everything else slows down. In fact, some routine programs may even stop working...



Cigarette smoking costs weigh heavily on the healthcare system
 By Madeline Kennedy (Reuters) - Of every $10 spent on healthcare in the U.S., almost 90 cents is due to smoking, a new analysis says. Using recent health and medical spending surveys, researchers calculated that 8.7 percent of all healthcare spending, or $170 billion a year, is for illness caused by tobacco smoke, and public programs like Medicare and Medicaid paid for most of these costs. ...

10 Healthy Habits for the New Year
 

10 Healthy Habits for the New Year2014 is coming to a close, so inevitably the chatter of New Year's resolutions is getting louder. It's great to start goal setting and structuring a program to make sure you're successful early; however, it's equally important to take note of what has and hasn't worked for your health and fitness goals this year. Regardless of whether you want...



The Rise of the Employed Physician
 

The Rise of the Employed PhysicianAs the youngest member of a family of doctors, it was not uncommon during my childhood to spend summers at my father's private practice. I fondly remember greeting the familiar office staff as I recklessly ran amok among an endless array of rickety cabinets containing an untold amount of aging, yellowed paper charts. My dad's patients would...



On Thankfulness
 

On ThankfulnessCredit: World Altering MedicineThe Kamuzu Central Hospital stands tall on a hill in the center of Lilongwe, the capital city of the southern African country Malawi. The largest of the tertiary health centers in the country, Kamuzu Central Hospital sees the widest variety of patients from the widest variety of communities. Primary health...



Conjoined Twin Babies Undergo First Step Toward Separation
 Knatalye and Adeline Mata underwent a 5-hour skin-stretching surgery.

Wall Street up for third day, led by energy shares
 

Man carries an umbrella in the rain as he passes the New York Stock ExchangeNEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. stocks extended gains for a third session on Friday, giving the S&P 500 its best weekly performance in nearly two months as energy shares continued to rebound.



Missouri school regrets swapping blind student's cane for foam tube
 (Reuters) - A Missouri school district has apologized for taking a cane away from a blind student and forcing him to use a foam tube called a pool noodle, the boy's father said on Friday. Earlier this week, North Kansas School District confiscated the cane of 8-year-old Dakota Nafzinger, who was born without eyes, after he reportedly swung it on a bus. A teacher gave the boy the foam tube instead, said his father Don Nafzinger. The school district, which serves more than 19,000 students in Kansas City, Missouri, said in a statement it made a mistake. ...

Parents of Colorado theater gunman plead for son’s life to be spared
 

James Holmes sits in court for an advisement hearing at the Arapahoe County Justice Center in CentennialBy Keith Coffman DENVER (Reuters) - The parents of the man charged in the fatal shootings of 12 people at a Colorado movie theater broke their silence over the 2012 killings on Friday, saying their son is mentally ill, "not a monster," and should be spared the death penalty. Arlene and Robert Holmes urged prosecutors to accept a guilty plea from their son, James Holmes, and a life sentence without parole to avoid the “additional trauma” that a lengthy trial would inflict on survivors and victims' families. ...



USDA report says pesticide residues in food nothing to fear
 By Carey Gillam (Reuters) - More than half of food tested by the U.S. government for pesticide residues last year showed detectable levels of pesticides, though most were within levels the government considers to be safe, according to a report issued Friday by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. The USDA looked at fresh and processed fruits and vegetables as well as infant formula, apple juice, and other products. ...

Oklahoma to again employ injection mix used in flawed execution
 By Heide Brandes OKLAHOMA CITY (Reuters) - Oklahoma plans to use the same lethal injection drug combination it employed during a botched execution in April, Department of Corrections officials told a federal court hearing arguments on whether to halt death sentences in the state from being carried out. Lawyers for 21 death row inmates in Oklahoma, four of whom are scheduled to die next year, have asked the court to suspend future executions following the lethal injection of convicted murderer Clayton Lockett. ...

Husbands Sign Up To Support Wives In Safe Motherhood Program in Uganda
 

Husbands Sign Up To Support Wives In Safe Motherhood Program in UgandaGeorge Lwigala has probably never heard of HeForShe nor indeed of Emma Watson. But the 36-year-old father, who lives in Butansi in rural Uganda, embodies the spirit of the gender equality campaign launched by the actress in New York in September.George has five children with his wife Annette, who recently joined a Safe Motherhood and Maternal...



FDA approves Cubists' drug for antibiotic-resistant bacteria
 By Amrutha Penumudi and Rosmi Shaji (Reuters) - Cubist Pharmaceutical Inc's drug to treat complicated urinary tract and intra-abdominal infections won U.S. approval on Friday, highlighting the regulator's interest in tackling the growing threat of the so-called superbugs. Cubist shares were up 1.9 percent in extended trading. The drug, Zerbaxa, treats infections caused by gram-negative bacteria — a type of antibiotic-resistant pathogens, often called superbugs. ...

AbbVie says newly approved hepatitis C treatment costs $83,319
 (Reuters) - An AbbVie Inc spokeswoman on Friday said that the company's newly approved hepatitis C treatment will cost $83,319 for a 12-week course, coming in a bit below the price of competing treatments from Gilead Sciences Inc. U.S. health regulators earlier on Friday approved AbbVie's all-oral treatment for hepatitis C, providing the first competition for Gilead. (Reporting by Caroline Humer)

Coal ash is not hazardous waste under U.S. agency rules
 

File photo of EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy announcing steps to cut carbon pollution in WashingtonBy Jonathan Kaminsky (Reuters) - In a disappointment to environmentalists, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued rules on Friday labeling coal ash, a byproduct of coal-based power production containing toxic materials such as arsenic and lead, as non-hazardous waste. The label means that states and environmental groups taking legal action, and not the EPA, will be the primary enforcers of the first-ever federal rules targeting coal ash, which will require the closure of some coal ash holding ponds leaking contaminants into surrounding water but will not cover others. ...



U.N. chief praises Ebola nurses, pledges support during visit
 

U.N. Secretary General Ban has his temperature checked upon arrival at the Roberts International airport in MonroviaBy Matthew Mpoke Bigg HASTINGS, Sierra Leone (Reuters) - U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Friday praised healthcare workers fighting the Ebola virus as he paid his first visit to Liberia and Sierra Leone following an outbreak that has killed nearly 7,000 people. Ban paid tribute to local workers and the United Nations, but he singled out medics from the three countries at the heart of the epidemic who have fallen sick while treating patients. ...



U.S. FDA approves AbbVie hepatitis C drug, costs $83,319 for 12 weeks
 By Caroline Humer (Reuters) - U.S. health regulators on Friday approved AbbVie's all-oral treatment for hepatitis C, and the company said the drug would cost $83,319 for a typical 12-week plan, a bit below its huge selling competitor Solvadi from Gilead Sciences. Gilead's Sovaldi treatment stole headlines last year with its $84,000 price tag and set off a national debate about whether drug prices have climbed too high. AbbVie's newly approved regimen is also less costly than Gilead's newest one-pill regimen that combines Sovaldi with another drug and costs $94,500 for 12 weeks. ...

FDA approves AbbVie combo hepatitis C treatment
 TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Patients with chronic hepatitis C have a new option for treating the liver-damaging virus, with the approval of a combination treatment developed by AbbVie.

Prepackaged caramel apples linked to 4 deaths
 WASHINGTON (AP) — Health officials are warning consumers to avoid prepackaged caramel apples because they are linked to four deaths and more than two dozen illnesses in 10 states.

UN chief praises Ebola nurses, pledges support during visit
 

U.N. Secretary General Ban has his temperature checked upon arrival at the Roberts International airport in MonroviaBy Matthew Mpoke Bigg HASTINGS, Sierra Leone (Reuters) - U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on Friday praised healthcare workers fighting the Ebola virus as he paid his first visit to Liberia and Sierra Leone following an outbreak that has killed nearly 7,000 people. Ban paid tribute to local workers and the United Nations, but he singled out medics from the three countries at the heart of the epidemic who have fallen sick while treating patients. ...



American nurse exposed to Ebola released from hospital
 

Health workers stand at the entrance to a quarantine zone in a Red Cross facility in the town of Koidu(Reuters) - An American nurse who was exposed to Ebola while volunteering in Sierra Leone was released from the National Institutes of Health's Clinical Center in Maryland on Friday without showing signs of the disease, NIH said. "The patient has shown no clinical or laboratory evidence of Ebola infection and will complete 21 days of monitoring at a private residence in Virginia under the direction of the Virginia Department of Health," NIH said in a statement. ...



Japan scientists develop micro-fine adhesive sensors
 

The invention opens up the possibility of implanting almost unnoticeable sensors inside the body, letting doctors keep a close eye on a dodgy heart, for exampleScientists in Japan have developed a sticky sheet of tiny sensors that can be put directly on moving joints, beating hearts or other living tissues. "Just by applying to the body like a compress, our novel sheet sensor detects biometric information extremely accurately," researchers at the University of Tokyo said in a statement Friday. The secret is an adhesive gel that prevents a fine grid of sensors from slipping, even if the thing they are in contact with is moving, said the team led by professor Takao Someya at the Department of Electrical Engineering and Information Systems.



UN's Ban urges end to discrimination against Ebola workers
 

United Nations Secretary General Ban speaks during a meeting with Liberia's President Johnson Sirleaf at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in MonroviaBy Matthew Mpoke Bigg CONAKRY (Reuters) - U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon on Saturday urged countries affected by the Ebola virus to avoid discriminating against healthcare workers fighting to end the disease. Ban was speaking in Guinea on the second day of a whistle-stop tour aimed at thanking healthcare workers of the countries at the heart of the epidemic. According to the latest World Health Organization figures, 7,373 people have died of Ebola in the three worst-affected countries, Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea. ...



Ebola death toll in three African countries hits 7,373: WHO
 

Health workers push a gurney with a dead body at a Red Cross facility in the town of KoiduGENEVA (Reuters) - The death toll from Ebola in the three worst-affected countries in West Africa has risen to 7,373 among 19,031 cases known to date there, the World Health Organization said on Saturday. The latest data, posted overnight on the WHO website, reflected nearly 500 new deaths from the worst ever outbreak of the hemorrhagic fever in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone since previous WHO figures were issued on Dec. 17. Sierra Leone accounts for the most cases, 8,759, against 7,819 for Liberia. ...



Child being observed at Chicago hospital to rule out Ebola
 

Interview is conducted with passenger arriving from Sierra Leone at O'Hare International Airport in ChicagoBy Mary Wisniewski CHICAGO (Reuters) - A child who arrived in Chicago with a fever was under observation on Friday at a city hospital to rule out the Ebola virus, hospital officials said. Federal officials screening arriving passengers at O'Hare International Airport detected the fever, but no other symptoms of the disease, the University of Chicago Medical Center said in a statement. The patient was isolated under strict quarantine protocols until the child’s condition improves and a diagnosis is established, the hospital said. The child was in stable condition. ...



WHO: Recorded Ebola deaths top 7,000
 

UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon, centre, inspects the honor guard upon arrival at the Roberts international airport in Monrovia, Liberia, Friday, Dec. 19, 2014. United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon praised health workers battling Ebola in Sierra Leone and Liberia on Friday, saying they have shown "the most noble face of humankind" amid an epidemic that has killed more than 6,900 people in West Africa. Ban, who made stops in both countries on Friday, travels Saturday to Guinea where the Ebola virus first emerged a year ago. (AP Photo/Abbas Dulleh)CONAKRY, Guinea (AP) — The worst Ebola outbreak on record has now killed more than 7,000 people, with many of the latest deaths reported in Sierra Leone, the World Health Organization said as United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon continued his tour of Ebola-affected countries in West Africa on Saturday.



Sierra Leone peacekeepers to leave Somalia mission
 FREETOWN, Sierra Leone (AP) — A Sierra Leone military official says the country is withdrawing from the African Union peacekeeping force in Somalia after being blocked from rotating its soldiers over concerns about the spread of Ebola.

Liberia holds Senate vote amid Ebola fears
 

An election workers takes the temperature of a voter in the West Point slum before she casts her vote, during the senate election in Monrovia, Liberia. Saturday, Dec. 20, 2014. Health workers manned polling stations across Liberia on Saturday as voters cast their ballots in a twice-delayed Senate vote that has been criticized for its potential to spread the deadly Ebola disease. (AP Photo/Abbas Dulleh)MONROVIA, Liberia (AP) — Health workers carrying thermometers and sanitizers manned polling stations across Liberia on Saturday as voters cast their ballots in a twice-delayed Senate election that has been criticized for its potential to spread the deadly Ebola disease.



Child tests negative for Ebola at Chicago hospital
 (Reuters) - A child being monitored for Ebola in a Chicago hospital has been discharged after testing negative for the virus, the state health agency said on Saturday. Federal officials screening for Ebola at O'Hare International Airport in Chicago detected a fever in the child, who had been held in isolation at the University of Chicago Medical Center for monitoring since Friday. "Tests by the Illinois Department of Public Health confirmed a negative result for Ebola," the Illinois Department of Public Health said in a statement. ...

South Korea halts U.S. poultry imports due to bird flu in U.S.
 By Meeyoung Cho SEOUL (Reuters) - South Korea has suspended imports of U.S. poultry and poultry products because of an outbreak of bird flu in the United States, the Agriculture Ministry said in a statement on Sunday. The suspension, from Saturday, comes as South Korea is struggling to contain its own outbreak of bird flu in birds. "This import suspension is a quarantine measure to prevent the HPAI virus from entering the country," the ministry statement said, referring to highly pathogenic avian influenza (HPAI) virus. ...

Liberian voter turnout low as Ebola overshadows senate election
 

Bystanders read the headlines illustrating the battle over the holding of elections in Liberia amid the Ebola crisis at a street side chalkboard newspaper in MonroviaBy James Harding Giahyue MONROVIA (Reuters) - Turnout for Liberian parliamentary elections on Saturday appeared to be low as concerns about Ebola kept many voters at home. Polling stations were largely empty after voting began at 8 a.m. (0800 GMT) in the seafront capital Monrovia, with voters occasionally drifting in, despite precautions put in place by the National Elections Commission (NEC). Staff with temperature guns at polling stations checked voters for any signs of the hemorrhagic fever, which is spread via bodily fluids. ...



U.N.'s Ebola mission should be closed once battle won: Ban
 

United Nations Secretary General Ban speaks during a meeting with Liberia's President Johnson Sirleaf at the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in MonroviaBy Matthew Mpoke Bigg BAMAKO (Reuters) - The United Nations mission to fight Ebola should be wound down quickly once the battle is won, U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon said on Saturday during his first tour of countries stricken with the virus. The U.N. emergency Ebola response mission, or UNMEER, was set up in September to coordinate policy and logistics for a campaign that includes governments, charities and healthcare workers from affected countries. Ban said UNMEER differed from peacekeeping missions and should not outlive its immediate purpose. ...



Britain lifts bird flu restrictions on duck farm
 

Ducks in cages are seen at a duck farm in NaffertonLONDON (Reuters) - Britain on Sunday lifted restrictions on the movement of poultry in a six-mile (9.7-km) zone around a duck farm in northern England where the highly contagious H5N8 bird flu strain was found last month. The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) said in a statement that all restrictions, including those covering the storage, transport and sourcing of meat products, had been lifted. ...



As Ford closes, European rust belt seeks new ideas
 

A worker leaves the factory for one of the final shifts at the Ford assembly plant in GenkBy Robin Emmott and Robert-Jan Bartunek GENK, Belgium (Reuters) - In the heart of western Europe, the Belgian-Dutch-German rust belt has been dealt another blow. Two car plants closed this month as companies sought cheaper labor elsewhere, the final chapter of a manufacturing boom that began when coal mines fuelling Europe's industrialization shut in the 1960s. The final production day at Ford Motor Co’s plant in the eastern Belgian city of Genk came barely two weeks after General Motors closed its Opel Bochum factory across the border in Germany, both part of automakers' strategy to adapt to falling sales following the euro zone crisis. "I worked at Ford Genk for almost 40 years, I've never applied for another job in all my life," said Pierre Boonen, 57, after one of his last shifts at the plant that generated work directly or indirectly for around 10,000 people.



BUSTED: 4 Common Myths About Catching Cold In Cold Weather
 

BUSTED: 4 Common Myths About Catching Cold In Cold WeatherDoes exposure to cold weather really make you more likely to catch a cold? No, it doesn't. In fact, as a new YouTube video entitled Cold Weather Myths explains, research suggests just the opposite: frigid temps lower the risk of catching cold by stimulating the body's production of infection-fighting immune cells known as granulocytes.And you...



Ebola response in rural Sierra Leone not yet rapid enough
 

Health workers rest outside a quarantine zone at a Red Cross facility in the town of KoiduBy Emma Farge KOIDU, Sierra Leone (Reuters) - The rapid response team has arrived and the chaos is easing, but medics in a remote Sierra Leonean district are struggling to control a local Ebola outbreak when it's too late to nip it in the bud. A deployment of medical workers and equipment to Kono District has been the fastest so far in Sierra Leone, a country with nearly half the total Ebola cases,- under a strategy of tackling epidemic hotspots before they get too big. ...



Health minister named as Haiti's new interim prime minister
 By Amelie Baron PORT-AU-PRINCE (Reuters) - Haitian Health Minister Florence Duperval Guillaume was named interim prime minister on Sunday to replace Laurent Lamothe, who resigned a week ago following several weeks of protests. The announcement is part of an effort to resolve a mounting political crisis over long-delayed elections. Under Haiti's constitution, Guillaume can hold the interim position for up to 30 days before a permanent choice is nominated for approval by parliament. ...

France braces for major doctors' strike at Christmas
 

Starting Tuesday, some French medical professionals will close shop in protest of a new health bill that will allow pharmacists, instead of doctors, to vaccinate patientsFrance is bracing for a major strike over the Christmas period by overworked doctors, including casualty staff and specialists unhappy about a new health bill. Emergency room doctors are due to kick off the protest Monday, demanding their work week be reduced to 48 hours, compared to around 60 currently, and better overtime pay. In Paris and its suburbs, hospitals have been ordered to activate a special crisis plan to help deal with the number of people who would normally have gone to a GP but will be going to a hospital instead.



South Africa's Zuma says in 'perfect' health after post-election fatigue
 

South African President Zuma delivers a speech at closing ceremony of the 2014 Year of South Africa in China in BeijingJOHANNESBURG (Reuters) - South African President Jacob Zuma said he was in "perfect" condition after recovering from a bout of fatigue that left him hospitalized in June, playing down reports of health problems. Zuma, 72, has noticeably lost weight since coming to power in 2009. He was hospitalized for two days of tests following what his office said was a demanding schedule in the run-up to May's national election. "I think we did overstretch ourselves, I think there was fatigue thereafter," Zuma said in an interview with national broadcaster SABC that was aired on Sunday. ...



Flying back on course: the inside story of the new Airbus A350 jet
 

Airbus's logo is pictured at Airbus headquarters in ToulouseBy Tim Hepher PARIS (Reuters) - Ten years ago, the boss of Qatar Airways, who takes his first new A350 jet this week, warned Airbus it was flying off course. Boeing was knocking on his door with a "super-efficient" jet boasting 30 percent fuel savings thanks to a carbon-composite design. In Toulouse, some Airbus engineers, riding high after overtaking Boeing and suspecting a short-lived marketing stunt, laughed off the future 787 with a “tail like a dolphin”. ...



 
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