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Finding Connections And Comfort At The Local Cafe

Finding Connections And Comfort At The Local Cafe

February 10, 2020February 10, 2020For Alzheimer’s patients and their caregivers, social and emotional isolation is a threat. But hundreds of “Memory Cafes” around the country offer them a chance to be with others who understand, and to receive social and cognitive stimulation in the process.LOS ANGELES — Doug and Connie Moore met at seminary. He was a student and pastor of an inner-city congregation, and she was a student and a public health nurse.This story also ran on .“She’s the one who drew me to the needs of the poor,” Doug says.The pair wed in 1974, and Doug became a pastor at the...

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Heidi de Marco
February 11, 2020
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How Lifesaving Organs For Transplant Go Missing In Transit

How Lifesaving Organs For Transplant Go Missing In Transit

February 10, 2020Scores of organs — mostly kidneys — are trashed each year and many more become critically delayed after being shipped on commercial airliners, a new investigation finds.This story also ran on .When a human heart was left behind by mistake on a in 2018, transplant officials downplayed the incident. They emphasized that the organ was used for valves and tissues, not to save the life of a waiting patient, so the delay was inconsequential.“It got to us on time, so that was the most important thing,” said Doug Wilson, an executive vice president for LifeNet Health, which runs...

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JoNel Aleccia
February 11, 2020
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Patients Stuck With Bills After Insurers Don’t Pay As Promised

Patients Stuck With Bills After Insurers Don’t Pay As Promised

This story also ran on .The more than $34,000 in medical bills that contributed to Darla and Andy Markley’s bankruptcy and loss of their home in Beloit, Wisconsin, grew out of what felt like a broken promise.Darla Markley, 53, said her insurer had sent her a letter preapproving her to have a battery of tests at the Mayo Clinic in neighboring Minnesota after she came down with transverse myelitis, a rare, paralyzing illness that had kept her hospitalized for over a month. But after the tests found she also had beriberi, a vitamin deficiency, Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield judged that the...

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Lauren Weber
February 11, 2020
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When It Comes To The New Coronavirus, Just Who Is A ‘Close Contact’?

When It Comes To The New Coronavirus, Just Who Is A ‘Close Contact’?

This story also ran on .Even as U.S. authorities have taken the drastic steps of quarantining residents returning from China, and temporarily banning foreign visitors who recently traveled to affected Chinese regions, they have urged the vast majority of U.S. residents to go about their regular activities.But there are exceptions. People who returned from China on or after Feb. 3 have been formally quarantined or asked to stay home. And behind the scenes, local public health officials have launched painstaking efforts to reach “close contacts” of people with confirmed cases of the virus,...

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Anna Maria Barry
February 11, 2020
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Better Than Other Plans Or Better Than Nothing? Trump’s Claim About ‘Affordable’ Options

Better Than Other Plans Or Better Than Nothing? Trump’s Claim About ‘Affordable’ Options

“Our new plans are up to 60% less expensive and better.”President Donald Trump in his State of the Union address to Congress, Feb. 4, 2020In his wide-ranging State of the Union address, President Donald Trump returned to a favorite theme: the cost of health insurance.This story was produced in partnership with .He cited the high cost of premiums for people who buy their coverage through the Affordable Care Act marketplaces and said his administration has provided new, less costly coverage.“I moved quickly to provide affordable alternatives. Our new plans are up to 60% less expensive and...

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Julie Appleby
February 11, 2020
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One Defensive Strategy Against Surprise Medical Bills: Set Your Own Terms

One Defensive Strategy Against Surprise Medical Bills: Set Your Own Terms

February 11, 2020When Stacey Richter’s husband recently landed in a New Jersey emergency room, fearing a heart attack, she had an additional reason for alarm: a potential big bill from the hospital if the ER wasn’t in his insurer’s network.So she took an unusual step. Instead of simply signing the hospital’s financial and treatment consent form, Richter first crossed out sections calling for her to pay whatever amount the hospital charged. She wrote in her own payment rate of a “maximum of two times” what the federal government would pay under Medicare, which is in the ballpark, experts...

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Julie Appleby
February 11, 2020
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Newsom Touts California’s ‘Public Option.’ Wait — What Public Option?

Newsom Touts California’s ‘Public Option.’ Wait — What Public Option?

Several Democratic presidential hopefuls are pitching a federal “public option” as a way to expand health coverage and make it more affordable.The details of their proposals vary, but is to create a government-sponsored plan that could compete with private insurance.“We have a public option, just so folks know,” California Gov. Gavin Newsom claimed last month as he unveiled his proposed 2020-21 state budget. “It’s called Covered California.”Hmm, really?California does not have a public option in the way most people understand the term. According to Newsom’s definition, offering a public...

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Ana B. Ibarra
February 11, 2020
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To Fight Chinese Outbreak, Doctors Deploy Drugs Targeting HIV, Malaria And Ebola

To Fight Chinese Outbreak, Doctors Deploy Drugs Targeting HIV, Malaria And Ebola

This story also ran on .As the scientific community scrambles to find a drug that can effectively treat tens of thousands of patients sickened by a new respiratory virus, they are trying some surprising remedies: medicines targeting known killers like HIV, Ebola and malaria.American drugmakers have shipped two antiviral medications to China as doctors and public health officials there seek an effective treatment for patients sickened by the , which has recently been named COVID19. The virus has afflicted tens of thousands of people worldwide and killed more than 1,300. Most of the cases and...

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Carmen Heredia Rodriguez
February 13, 2020
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Viewpoints: Where Is All The Important Information Health Care Providers Need About Coronavirus?; Suppressing News Is China’s Biggest Medical Mistake

Viewpoints: Where Is All The Important Information Health Care Providers Need About Coronavirus?; Suppressing News Is China’s Biggest Medical Mistake

Opinion writers weigh in on these health care issues and others.As of Feb. 9, China has reported 908 deaths from 2019-nCoV, more deaths than were caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS). Although some details on a small number of deaths have been provided in clinical case series published in top academic journals, more data are needed.Governments, public health authorities, clinicians, and hospitals trying to prevent deaths from 2019-nCoV would benefit from knowing, for example, what was the time elapsed between the first appearance of symptoms and the time of death? What...

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February 13, 2020
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Dental Shock: Six Pulled Teeth And One Unexpected Bill

Dental Shock: Six Pulled Teeth And One Unexpected Bill

This story also ran on .STATESVILLE, N.C. — The ache in three of Kathy McCracken’s teeth started almost four years ago. It was hard for her to chew and swallow. She was sensitive to both hot and cold food.“Pain, pain, pain” was how McCracken, now 69, described the feeling. After taking X-rays, she said, her dentist told her six teeth would need to be pulled.She had two teeth with exposed roots, holes in another two, one tooth with a cap that had a cavity underneath, and a piece of a tooth left from one that had been pulled, she said.McCracken found herself in difficult circumstances. The...

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Victoria Knight
March 10, 2020
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