Dr. Evans Leads Charge Against Disparities in Healthcare

As the founder and CEO/President of Community Wellness Centers of America LLC (CWCOA) and Equinox Electronic Medical Records (EMR), Dr. Robert Evans is working towards organizing and delivering required healthcare services in under-served communities that otherwise would be neglected.

As a medical physician and long time community activist, Dr. Evans understands the resources and programs required to address chronic illnesses through preventive programs, which are often absent from minority communities.

Dr. Evans has developed his companies with a primary mission to deliver state-of-the-art health programs and services, improve healthcare outcomes in underserved communities, and collaborate with hospital systems, physicians, and ancillary healthcare services. All of these steps will help to create a coordinated healthcare delivery system to provide equality in healthcare for residents through increased emphasis on prevention.

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How Does Stress Affect Your Immune System?

No one is immune from stress. According to Merriam-Webster, stress is defined as “a state of mental tension and worry caused by problems in your life, work, etc”. Despite its negative connotation in popular culture, this mental state can be both beneficial and harmful.

An example of ‘good stress’ would be the short, intense burst of tension or anxiety that is felt before events like a test or job interview. Good stress is beneficial because it can provide a temporary extra boost of energy or alertness, which increases performance. Good stress also manifests in the fight or flight response. This chemical reaction occurs when a threat to survival is perceived, and triggers a physiological reaction. An example of the fight or flight response is when we get startled by a loud noise. We have developed this response as a means of survival.

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The Anger of Cancer

By SUSAN GUBAR  (original article)

While dealing with lung cancer, my friend Nancy K. Miller seethed in her blog at pharmaceutical advertisements and hospital commercials that bombard us daily with pictures of joyous cancer patients supported by doting intimates. These jubilant characters have nothing to do with the frustrated people we know who periodically erupt in righteous indignation. I often must remind myself that anger needs to be understood as the flip side of the roiling fear that cancer instills in patients and also in caregivers.

Over the past few years, every member of my support group has bristled over well-intentioned but hurtful relatives.

Carrol enjoyed her Joan of Arc post-chemo look until her 82-year-old mother asked, “Why aren’t you wearing your wig to cover up?”

Carrol’s loyal husband, cross at her decision to retire, refused to discuss end-of-life planning. He wanted her to keep on fighting, whereas she wanted to cope with the recurrence that she expected and that did, to his great sorrow, soon end her life.

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New York City drug overdose deaths up 73% over last five years, with heroin claiming the most victims

Heroin was the deadliest overdose drug, involved in 59% of deaths in 2015.

Heroin was the deadliest overdose drug, involved in 59% of deaths in 2015.

The number of drug overdose deaths has soared by 73% in the city over the last five years, data released Tuesday by the Health Department show.There were 937 accidental fatal ODs in 2015 — up from 800 the year before, and from 541 in 2010.

The rate of people dying from drug overdoses jumped for the fifth-straight year, to 13.6 for every 100,000 residents — a 66% jump from 2010.

The heroin overdose rate soared even more — by 158% over the same period.

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Sex May Spread Zika Virus More Often Than Researchers Suspected

Photo

A couple in Rio de Janeiro last year. Intimate contact may account for more Zika infections than previously suspected, though recent findings have been disputed. CreditDado Galdieri/Bloomberg, via Getty Images

An outbreak of the Zika virus in the continental United States could begin any day now. But while there is plenty of discussion about mosquito bites, some researchers are beginning to worry more about the other known transmission route: sex.

Intimate contact may account for more Zika infections than previously suspected, these experts say.

The evidence is still emerging, and recent findings are hotly disputed. All experts agree that mosquitoes are the epidemic’s main driver.

But two reports now suggest that women in Latin America are much more likely to be infected than men, although both are presumed to be equally exposed to mosquitoes.

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Studies Find “Super Bacteria” at Rio’s Olympic Venues, Top Beaches

(Original Article)

The drug-resistant bacteria can reportedly cause pulmonary and bloodstream infections, and meningitis

June 13, 2016

By Brad Brooks

RIO DE JANEIRO (Reuters) – Scientists have found dangerous drug-resistant “super bacteria” off beaches in Rio de Janeiro that will host Olympic swimming events and in a lagoon where rowing and canoe athletes will compete when the Games start on Aug. 5.

The findings from two unpublished academic studies seen by Reuters concern Rio’s most popular spots for tourists and greatly increase the areas known to be infected by the microbes normally found only in hospitals.

They also heighten concerns that Rio’s sewage-infested waterways are unsafe.

A study published in late 2014 had shown the presence of the super bacteria – classified by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) as an urgent public health threat – off one of the beaches in Guanabara Bay, where sailing and wind-surfing events will be held during the Games.

The first of the two new studies, reviewed in September by scientists at the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy in San Diego, showed the presence of the microbes at five of Rio’s showcase beaches, including the ocean-front Copacabana, where open-water and triathlon swimming will take place.

The other four were Ipanema, Leblon, Botafogo and Flamengo.
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Alzheimer’s Disease Symptoms Reversed in Mice

(Original Article)

A cancer drug given to mice eliminates brain-damaging proteins, leading to improved cognition within days, but will it work in humans?

A nearly 13-year-old skin cancer drug rapidly alleviates molecular signs of Alzheimer’s disease and improves brain function, according to the results of a new mouse study being hailed as extremely promising. Early-stage human clinical trials could begin within months.

In the study, published online February 9 by Science, researchers from Case Western Reserve University in Cleveland and colleagues used mice genetically engineered to exhibit some of the symptoms of Alzheimer’s. Most notably, the mice produced amyloid beta peptides—toxic protein fragments that gum up neurons and lead to cell death—and showed signs of forgetfulness.
Amyloid beta (red areas) peptides clear from the brain of an Alzheimer’s mouse after three days of treatment with a cancer drug (right image). Source: AAAS/Science

The Case Western team, led by Gary Landreth, decided to try the drugbexarotene (Targretin), approved in 1999 for cutaneous T cell lymphomas. The team chose this drug because of its long experience working with proteins in the nucleus of brain cells that can induce biochemical processes that affect amyloid beta.

Landreth and his colleagues fed bexarotene to the demented mice, and with just a single dose it lowered the most toxic form of the amyloid beta peptide by 25 percent within six hours, an effect that lasted for up to three days. Mice that were cognitively impaired by the amyloid buildup resumed normal behaviors after 72 hours: They began to crinkle toilet paper placed nearby to make nests, a skill lost as amyloid increased in their brains.

“We have successfully reversed all of the known pathological features and behavioral deficits found in mouse models of Alzheimer’s disease,” Landreth says. “Never before has anyone observed clearance of amyloid plaques with such speed in mouse models.”
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10 Tips to Reduce Summer Allergy Symptoms

Hot and humid summer weather can impact allergy symptoms — and to ensure that your indoor and outdoor activities are not impacted by “wheezing and sneezing” moments. Our tips will allow you to manage, reduce and (perhaps) eliminate allergens in your indoor and outdoor environment.

Here are 10 tips to consider:

Fruit Not Always Your Friend — Many of our favorite fruits, from apples and bananas to peaches and plums can cause symptoms similar to grass or tree pollen reactions. If you are sensitive, place the fruit in the microwave for 10 seconds to deactivate the proteins, and never eat the peel.
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Man lives 555 days without a heart

(CNN)While waiting for a human heart transplant, Stan Larkin lived 555 days without the organ at all.

To passers-by, the 25-year-old Ypsilanti, Michigan, resident appeared to be a typical young adult. He enjoyed taking his three toddlers to the park and hanging out with his younger brother, Dominique.
What wasn’t obvious was that a gray backpack Larkin carried was what kept him alive. Inside that bag was the power source for an artificial heart pumping in his chest.
Larkin’s real heart was removed from his body in November 2014. It was replaced with a device that allowed Larkin to stay home instead of in a hospital while waiting to receive a transplant.

Human organs grown in pigs may help transplant patients, scientists say

It finally arrived this year, in May. Now, Larkin is recovering from his procedure at the University of Michigan Frankel Cardiovascular Center. He is scheduled to return home as early as next week.
“Most people would be scared to go so long with [an artificial heart], but I just want to tell them that you have to go through the fear, because it helps you,” Larkin said. “I’m going home so fast after the transplant because it helped me stay healthy before the transplant.”
At any given time, there are about 4,000 patients nationwide waiting for human heart transplants, according to the U.S. Organ Procurement and Transplantation Network.
Some patients with end-stage heart failure may wait months or even years before a suitable donor heart becomes available, said Dr. Billy Cohn, a cardiovascular surgeon and director of the Center for Technology and Innovation at the Texas Heart Institute.
“Many of these patients have hearts that are so weak, the kidneys, liver and other critical organs will fail while they are waiting,” said Cohn, who was not involved in Larkin’s care. “Many of these patients would die without some form of support,” such as an artificial heart.
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Hepatitis C deaths hit all-time high in United States

Almost 20,000 people died of hepatitis C in 2014, an all-time high, the CDC says.

Story highlights

  • Almost 20,000 people died of hepatitis C in 2014, an all-time high, CDC says
  • Many at risk are baby boomers exposed before the nation’s blood supply was screened
  • New cases of hepatitis C doubled as well, mostly among young, white drug users

(CNN)Hepatitis C-related deaths reached an all-time high in 2014, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Wednesday, surpassing total combined deaths from 60 other infectious diseases including HIV, pneumococcal disease and tuberculosis. The increase occurred despite recent advances in medications that can cure most infections within three months.

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UnitedHealthcare to exit most Obamacare exchanges

UnitedHealthcare, the biggest health insurer in the United States, said Tuesday that it plans to exit most of the Affordable Care Act state exchanges where it currently operates by 2017.

The health insurer had already indicated that it was dropping coverage of the plans, more commonly known as Obamacare, in Arkansas, Georgia and Michigan.

But during a conference call with analysts Tuesday, CEO Stephen Hemsley noted that “next year we will remain in only a handful of states.”

Hemsley explained that UnitedHealth will leave most states by 2017 because the markets for these exchanges are relatively small and also have higher risks for the company over the short-term.

As such, he said UnitedHealth (UNH) could not serve these exchanges on an “effective and sustained basis.”

It shouldn’t come as a huge surprise. UnitedHealth had previously said that it lost $475 million on the ACA exchanges last year and could lose another $500 million this year.

But Hemsley said that the company will “continue to remain an advocate for more stable and sustainable approaches to serving this market and those who rely on it for their care.”

Related: Obamacare patients sicker and pricier than expected

UnitedHealth’s president and chief financial officer David Wichmann added that the company served 795,000 people on public exchanges as of the end of the first quarter. It expects to have only 650,000 public exchange members by December.
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