Health

1:55pm

Wed October 3, 2012

10:58am

Wed October 3, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

In Nigerian Gold Rush, Lead Poisons Thousands Of Children

Originally published on Fri October 5, 2012 1:26 pm

Women and their children wait for medication and instructions on how to use it at the clinic in Dareta, Nigeria. Treating children with high levels of lead is a painstaking process that works only if their environment at home is free from lead.
David Gilkey NPR

Across a swath of northern Nigeria, a humanitarian catastrophe is unfolding, as lead from illegal gold mines sickens thousands of children.

More than 400 kids have died, and many more have been mentally stunted for life.

Doctors Without Borders, which has set up clinics to treat the children, is calling it one of the worst cases of environmental lead poisoning in recent history.

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7:57am

Wed October 3, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

How Sunlight Weakens Your Skin

Originally published on Thu October 4, 2012 7:53 am

Stefano Amabili walks under the sun in Miami Beach, Florida, in May. The Center for Disease Control and Prevention has found that more people are using sunscreen and protecting themselves from the sun's rays.
Joe Raedle Getty Images

A sunny day at the beach has plusses and minuses for your health.

A little bit of sun can help your body produce vitamin D, but the sun's ultraviolet radiation raises your risk for skin cancer. And, it turns out, UV radiation poses another threat — it physically weakens your skin.

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1:37am

Wed October 3, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Medicare Dings Hospitals For Too Many Repeat Customers

Originally published on Wed October 3, 2012 8:14 am

Denver Health has a network of clinics to keep track of patients discharged from its hospital.
Denver Health

A paradox of American health care is that hospitals are sometimes rewarded for doing things badly.

Patients who are discharged, for example, shouldn't have to come right back because they got worse after getting home. But if they do come back, hospitals benefit because they can fill an empty bed and bill for more care.

The federal government says, in fact, that Medicare alone pays $17.4 billion a year for unnecessary return visits.

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1:32am

Wed October 3, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

When New Diseases Emerge, Experts Are Faster On The Uptake

Originally published on Wed October 3, 2012 10:37 am

A railway worker wearing protective clothing to ward off the SARS virus controls a line of travelers as they wait to enter Beijing's West Railway Station Tuesday in 2003.
Greg Baker AP

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