Thursday, October 31, 2013

Increase your intelligence

You can increase your intelligence: 5 ways to maximize your cognitive potential | Guest Blog, Scientific American Blog Network: "I have come up with five primary elements involved in increasing your fluid intelligence, or cognitive ability. . . . But it isn’t impractical to adopt lifestyle changes that will have the same—and even greater cognitive benefits. These can be implemented every day, to get you the benefits of intense entire-brain training, and should transfer to gains in overall cognitive functioning as well. These five primary principles are: 1. Seek Novelty 2. Challenge Yourself 3. Think Creatively 4. Do Things The Hard Way 5. Network . . ." (read more at link above)

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Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Millions Of Consumers Get Health Insurance Cancellation Notices

Obamacare causing massive cancellation of Health Insurance Policies nationwide -- Obama lied when he promised you would be able to keep your current policy --

Thousands Of Consumers Get Insurance Cancellation Notices Due To Health Law Changes - Kaiser Health News: "Florida Blue, for example, is terminating about 300,000 policies, about 80 percent of its individual policies in the state. Kaiser Permanente in California has sent notices to 160,000 people – about half of its individual business in the state.  Insurer Highmark in Pittsburgh is dropping about 20 percent of its individual market customers, while Independence Blue Cross, the major insurer in Philadelphia, is dropping about 45 percent.. . .." (read more at link above)

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Sunday, October 27, 2013

How to take control of your life online

Conscious computing: how to take control of your life online | Technology | The Guardian: "After all, distraction – as the Australian philosopher Damon Young points out in his book of that name – isn't just a minor irritant. It's a serious philosophical problem: what you focus on, hour by hour, day after day, ends up comprising your whole life. "To be diverted isn't simply to have too many stimuli but to be confused about what to attend to and why," Young writes. "Distraction is the very opposite of emancipation: failing to see what is worthwhile in life, and lacking the wherewithal to seek it." To recover from techno-distraction, "what's required is not Luddite extremism but a more ambitious relationship to our tools – one that promotes our liberty instead of weakening it.""

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Thursday, October 24, 2013

Dental Care, Startup, Obamacare, Gaps

A Dental Care Startup Sees Profit in Obamacare's Gaps - Businessweek: "The Affordable Care Act is expected to bring millions of Americans into the health-care system, increasing market opportunity for industry incumbents and startups alike. Less heralded is the business potential from individuals who slip through Obamacare’s gaps. A startup called Brighter, which helps people without dental insurance get better prices from dentists, sees itself in the latter category. Noting that Obamacare isn’t likely to improve access for the more than 135 million Americans who lack dental coverage (PDF), it aims to do what traditional insurers do: use economies of scale to negotiate better prices for them. As of today, Brighter Chief Executive Officer Jake Winebaum says that patients who use his company’s platform to book appointments with 350 participating Los Angeles dentists will pay, on average, 53 percent less than standard out-of-pocket costs. The Santa Monica (Calif.)-based company, which has raised $15 million in venture capital, plans to profit by charging dentists to access uninsured patients. . . ." (read more at link above)

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Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Helping Children, Sport Safety

Helping Children Play Safely in Sports - . . . Children should not have to pay a painful, and sometimes deadly, price for doing what is good for them. The risks can be minimized when young athletes have proper equipment, a safe environment in which to play, and access to health care professionals who know when and how to intervene. Whether your child plays organized sports like soccer, football or basketball, or participates in cheerleading or marching band, the advice that follows can help prevent potentially serious injuries. Much of it is based on safety tips issued last month by the athletic trainers’ association. . . . . (read more at link above)

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Sunday, October 20, 2013

US health care, disintermediation

Claiming the $1 trillion prize in US health care | McKinsey & Company: "First, payers (and patients) must redefine the roles they expect providers to play and clearly establish that they want these roles to match the needs of 21st-century patients. In a system characterized by complexity, specialization, a high prevalence of chronic illness, and a proliferation of drugs and devices, the United States needs fewer component providers who specialize in a single task, such as taking diagnostic images. Instead, it will need more healers (providers who can achieve specific objectives for patients during episodes of care) and partners (providers who can help improve a patient’s health and wellness over a longer period of time). Today, few providers act as or are rewarded for being healers or partners. . . ."

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Thursday, October 17, 2013

Wireless Way to Save Health-Care Costs

Sleep apnea is “widely underd iagnosed,” so smartphone detection—which Poceta welcomes—may drive up health-care costs. “As a matter of business, the bigger number being screened will uncover more of those who need the expert and the sleep lab,” he says.(source infra)

The Wireless Way to Save Health-Care Costs | MIT Technology Review: "Starting in August, he’s spearheading a new study called “Wired for Health” that will gauge the economic value of three commercial wireless devices (AliveCor, the Withings blood pressure monitor, and an iPhone glucose meter) in 200 patients with diabetes, hypertension and heart-rhythm disorders, the type of chronically ill patients who account for about 80 percent of all medical bills nationwide. The controlled study will give the devices to only half the participants and will assess whether actively tracking their health reduces health-care costs."

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Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Top Sport for Head Injuries, Cycling

Really? Cycling Is the Top Sport for Head Injuries - " . . . In New York City, 75 percent of all fatal bike accidents involve a head injury. In addition to wearing a helmet, another helpful precaution is using a marked bike lane: Streets that have them have 40 percent fewer crashes ending in death or serious injury. Bike accidents contribute to more sports-related head injuries than any other activity."

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Sunday, October 13, 2013

Order, Disorder, Creativity

What a Messy Desk Says About You - "“Disorderly environments seem to inspire breaking free of tradition,” Dr. Vohs and her co-authors conclude in the study, “which can produce fresh insights.” The implications of these findings are also practical. “My advice would be, if you need to think outside the box” for a future project, Dr. Vohs says, then let the clutter rise and unfetter your imagination. But if your primary goal is to eat well or to go to the gym, pick up around your office first. By doing this, the naturally messy can acquire some of the discipline of the conscientious."

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Thursday, October 10, 2013

Behavior Therapy, Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder

Adding cognitive behavioral therapy may be more effective than an antipsychotic drug for treating obsessive-compulsive disorder, a new study found.(souce infra)

Behavior Therapy Aids Obsessive-Compulsive Disorder - " . .  . Researchers studied 100 people with O.C.D. who were taking antidepressants without sufficient improvement. They randomized 40 to the antipsychotic risperidone (brand name Risperdal), 20 to a placebo pill, and 40 to exposure and ritual prevention, a special form of C.B.T. delivered twice a week over eight weeks. All continued their antidepressants as well. The study was published online in JAMA Psychiatry, and several of the authors have financial relationships with pharmaceutical companies.. . . "

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Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Life expectancy, disease

Life expectancy history: Public health and medical advances that lead to long lives. - Slate Magazine: "The vast majority of deaths before the mid-20th century were caused by microbes—bacteria, amoebas, protozoans, or viruses that ruled the Earth and to a lesser extent still do. It’s not always clear which microbes get the credit for which kills. Bills of mortality (lists of deaths by causes) were kept in London starting in the 1600s and in certain North American cities and parishes starting in the 1700s. At the time, people thought fevers were spread by miasmas (bad air) and the treatment of choice for pretty much everything was blood-letting."

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Sunday, October 6, 2013

Children as Chattel, USA, International Adoptions

No authority tracks what happens after a child is brought to America, so no one knows how often international adoptions fail. The U.S. government estimates that domestic adoptions fail at a rate ranging from "about 10 to 25 percent." If international adoptions fail with about the same frequency, then more than 24,000 foreign adoptees are no longer with the parents who brought them to the United States. Some experts say the percentage could be higher given the lack of support for those parents.(source infra)

Reuters Investigates - The Child Exchange: "....Through Yahoo and Facebook groups, parents and others advertise the unwanted children and then pass them to strangers with little or no government scrutiny, sometimes illegally, a Reuters investigation has found. It is a largely lawless marketplace. Often, the children are treated as chattel, and the needs of parents are put ahead of the welfare of the orphans they brought to America. The practice is called "private re-homing," a term typically used by owners seeking new homes for their pets. Based on solicitations posted on one of eight similar online bulletin boards, the parallels are striking...."

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Thursday, October 3, 2013

Trader Joe's, Part-Time Workers, Obamacare

Trader Joe's To Drop Health Coverage For Part-Time Workers Under Obamacare: Memo: "While the stakes for workers aren't clear, the benefits to Trader Joe's under the new arrangement are obvious. The implementation of Obamacare provides an opportune moment for the company to get in line with less generous competitors, and the savings the company finds in dropping coverage for part-timers will almost certainly outstrip the $500 it will give employees to defray what they end up paying on the exchanges."

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Tuesday, October 1, 2013

House, Physical Space, Home, Mental Space

Silicon Valley techies spur home building and remodeling boom - ""We wanted space," said Charlotte Matityahu. "The last thing we wanted was a new home, so we found a really old, dysfunctional giant barn of a thing and made it into a home, not a house. What you need is a place to decompress and create mental -- not physical -- space, so you can process everything and get ready for tomorrow."" (read more at link above)

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