Health: Interesting Stories from National Public Radio


Here is the latest Health News from NPR.

FDA Considering Pricey Implant As Treatment For Opioid Addiction
The FDA could soon approve an implantable form of a drug used to treat opioid addiction. While the approach helped patients avoid relapse in tests, its price may be prohibitive for some, doctors say.

Southern Lawmakers Lead Fight Over Funding To Combat Zika Virus
NPR’s Ari Shapiro speaks with Republican Sen. Johnny Isakson of Georgia about the need for congressional funding to prevent the Zika virus from spreading in the U.S. The Florida delegation sees this as a national emergency.

Health Departments Cut Programs While Awaiting Zika Funding
The extended debate in Congress over emergency funding for a response to the Zika virus is forcing public health departments to cut existing prevention and treatment programs.

Oklahoma Lawmakers Pass Bill That Makes Performing An Abortion A Felony
The sweeping, first-of-its-kind bill will now be sent to Oklahoma’s governor, who has not indicated whether she plans to sign it. If she does, an abortion rights group plans to sue.

Condoms By Drone: A New Way To Get Birth Control To Remote Areas
A pilot project in Ghana is one of several experiments to see if drones can deliver everything from contraceptives to blood for transfusions.

‘You Are Getting Sleepy,’ Said The Scientist To The Fruit Fly
Research on sleep-deprived fruit flies identified specific brain cells that can trigger sleep. The finding of these sleep circuits in insects could help scientists better understand human insomnia.

Does Swaddling A Baby Boost Risk Of SIDS?
People have been wrapping babies tightly in blankets just about forever. An analysis of existing data found that swaddling is safe if babies are put to sleep on their backs.

In Search For Cures, Scientists Create Embryos That Are Both Animal And Human
Researchers experimenting with chimeric embryos say they could develop into adult pigs, sheep or cows with human organs that one day might be suitable for transplantation in people.

Complain All You Want, But Your Busy Schedule May Help Your Brain
It looks like there’s a sweet spot between busy and stressed out that may help keep the brain sharp over time. Busy people retain more memory as they age, a study finds.

Autism Can Be An Asset In The Workplace, Employers And Workers Find
Roughly 40 percent of young adults with autism spectrum disorder aren’t finding jobs. But some employers are now recruiting adults on the spectrum as an untapped talent pool of focused workers.

Should Pediatricians Ask Parents If They’re Poor?
It may seem like nobody’s business, but there’s abundant evidence that living in a home with poverty can harm children’s health, And there are proven ways that doctors can help with that.

Girls And Older Adults Are Missing Out On Parks For Recreation
A survey of parks in 25 major cities find that they’re used mostly by young children and teenage boys. Walking loops and other options that would appeal to women are in short supply.

Courtside Seat For Basketball Games Helps Ohio Woman Fight Cancer
Brenda Newport is an unwavering fan of the minor league basketball team: Canton Charge. She says rooting for the home team and heckling the opposition give her life as she battles cancer.

Treating Opioid Addiction With A Drug Raises Hope And Controversy
Medication-assisted treatment uses one of several drugs approved by the Food and Drug Administration to control cravings and reduce relapses. Despite the evidence, the approach is underused.

Rising Sea Levels Made This Republican Mayor A Climate Change Believer
Already, expensive neighborhoods are flooding more often in Coral Gables, Fla. Mayor James Cason wants his city prepared for the economic fallout.

Insurers Leaving An Exchange May Still Sell Individual Plans
Some insurers continue to sell coverage to individuals on the open market even after deciding to exit the health law’s marketplaces.

Rape And Facebook Make Tense Headlines In South Africa This Spring
Students have posted the names of accused rapists on Facebook. And a judge sparks a furor with Facebook messages that seem to say rape is part of black culture.

How Congress And The VA Left Many Veterans Without A ‘Choice’
The $10 billion Veterans Choice program was supposed to cut down on wait times and let veterans see private doctors, but less than two years later, the faltering program needs an overhaul.

Who Should Be Worried About Zika And What Should They Do?
Mosquito season is just getting under way in the U.S., and some areas have the mosquitoes that transmit the Zika virus. Pregnant women in places like Florida and Texas are at greatest risk.

Hollywood Jet Gives Fearful Fliers The Courage To Soar
A small group boards a 727 jet parked on a studio sound stage in Southern California. The airplane cabin is normally used for filming movies — but these “passengers” have real-world fears.

CDC Waits For Congress To Approve Emergency Funds To Combat Zika
The Senate is set to vote Tuesday on a deal to provide more than $1 billion to battle Zika. Mary Louise Kelly talks to Tom Frieden, director of the Centers For Disease Control and Prevention.

As Supreme Court Sends Back Birth Control Case, Both Sides Claim Victory
The Supreme Court gave lower courts additional instructions to try and reach an accommodation on balancing religious rights and no-cost access to contraception.

Doctors In Boston Perform World’s Third Penis Transplant
Boston doctors have performed the world’s third penis transplant. Of the two previous ones, one has been successful and one did not work. But with more veterans having blast injuries to the groin, doctors say it’s important to work on this kind of procedure.

Supreme Court Sends Obamacare Contraception Case Back To Lower Courts
The Supreme Court Monday punted on the constitutional merits of a religious freedom challenge to the Affordable Care Act. The court said it was feasible to satisfy religious groups and women seeking contraception and sent the case back to the lower courts.

The Power Of Genes, And The Line Between Biology And Destiny
Dr. Siddhartha Mukherjee says genetics play a significant role in identity, temperament, sexual orientation and disease risk — but that environment also matters. His new book isThe Gene.

New York Aims To Become The Next State To Toss The Tampon Tax
If 2015 was the year of the period, 2016 may be the year when women have to pay less for sanitary supplies, or even get them for free. Some state, local and federal legislators are pushing for change.

You Can Have Our Millions — But First You Have To Pass Our Test
The U.S. aid group MCC just suspended a $463 million “compact” with Tanzania because of concerns about unfair elections on its semi-autonomous island, Zanzibar.

Suddenly Paralyzed, Two Men Struggle To Recover From Guillain-Barre
Guillain-Barre syndrome can render healthy people temporarily paralyzed. It’s something you’re likely to hear more about as Zika continues to spread. And for those who get it, it is one wild ride.

Attempted Fix For VA Health Delays Creates New Bureaucracy
A $10 billion program to eliminate long wait times and other problems for veterans’ health care hasn’t worked out as planned. More veterans wait even longer for care now than they did a year ago.

Southerners Brace For Mosquito Season With Fears Of Zika
The Zika virus, which has links to birth defects, has not been seen in mosquitoes in Georgia. But 13 cases linked to travel have been reported in the state, and pregnant women are concerned.

The Dabbawallas Will Deliver Wedding Leftovers To The Hungry
Mumbai’s dabbawallas, a lunch delivery collective, have begun gathering extra food from events and dropping it off with the homeless.

Amid India’s Drought Crisis, Suicides Increase Among Farmers Deep In Debt
In the parched fields of India’s central states, the district of Beed in Maharashtra has been buffeted by a multi-year cycle of drought. One widow tells her story of coping with drought and loss.

Higher-Earning Households Tend To Spend More Time Alone
A new study finds that wealthier people spend less time socializing. NPR’s Linda Wertheimer talks with Emily Bianchi of Emory University about how income levels affect how people spend their time.

Rest Easy: New Study Doesn’t Change What We Know About Safe Swaddling
A new report on swaddling raised alarm for many new parents, but Joy Victory of tells NPR’s Linda Wertheimer they needn’t worry.

Reviving Memory With An Electrical Current
While still experimental, deep brain stimulation with implanted electrodes is being tested as a way to ease dementia in patients with Alzheimer’s and other neurological conditions. Could it work?

Pfizer To Stop Selling Drugs For Use In Lethal Injections
The drugmaker was the “last remaining open-market source of drugs used in executions,” The New York Times reported. Other U.S. and European firms had already blocked drugs from use in executions.

Pilots And ACLU Sue Airline Over Breast Milk Pumping At Work
Four female pilots says that Frontier Airlines failed to provide legally required accommodations so they could pump breast milk and do their jobs. The ACLU filed a complaint on their behalf.

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