Tue May 15, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

Should Parents Be Able To Sue For 'Wrongful Birth'?

Originally published on Tue May 15, 2012 9:51 am

Arizona state Sen. Nancy Barto, R-Phoenix, listens during a special budget briefing at the state Capitol in October 2008. Barto sponsored a new law that prohibits wrongful birth lawsuits. She says the bill "sends the message that all life is worth protecting."
Ross D. Franklin AP

Several states, including Kansas and New Jersey, are debating so-called "wrongful birth" laws that would prevent parents from suing a doctor who fails to warn them about fetal problems.

Abortion rights activists say the laws give doctors the right to withhold information so women don't have abortions.

In Suffern, N.Y., Sharon and Steven Hoffman's son, Jake, was born with Tay-Sachs, a genetic disease that mainly affects Jewish families and is usually fatal by age 4 or 5.

"There's no treatment. There's no cure. There's nothing," Sharon says.

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Tue May 15, 2012
Family Matters: The Money Squeeze

Caring For Grandparent Matures A Young Man

Originally published on Wed May 23, 2012 10:47 am

Maryland resident Nicholas McDonald, 24, has briefly abandoned his musical aspirations to enter the workforce and contribute to the family's finances. "I'd like to give my mom $100 every now and then," he says.
Kainaz Amaria NPR

Nicholas McDonald grew up tempted by drugs and under pressure to hit the streets. Lacking male role models, the Maryland resident says he always saw his mom as "the apple of my eye."

Natasha Shamone-Gilmore tried to protect her son growing up. Now, 24-year-old Nicholas is doing his best to return the favor.

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Mon May 14, 2012
Shots - Health Blog

To Fight HIV, Indian Health Workers Say Homosexuality Must Be Legal

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 9:20 pm

Participants carry a rainbow flag during a gay, lesbian, bisexual and transgender parade in Mumbai, India.
Rajanish Kakade AP

It's just after nightfall as Anandrag Davinder, an outreach worker among Mumbai's mostly hidden community of gay men, wanders down a dark alley beside a busy railway station in Mumbai. His stop is a squalid row of urinal buildings where gay men go to meet, hidden from public view. The stench inside is overwhelming.

"This is a loo. This is a cruising center," Davinder says, stepping into the crowded, nearly pitch-black room. "All the gays are standing here only and saying, 'I like these guys. I want to do sex with this person.' "

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Mon May 14, 2012
The Two-Way

Syrian Violence Spills Into Neighboring Lebanon

A Sunni gunman fires during clashes in the northern port city of Tripoli, Lebanon on Monday.
Hussein Malla AP

For a third day in a row, the violence of Syria spilled into the northern city of Tripoli in Lebanon.

The AP reports that the Alawites, who support the regime of Bashar Assad, and the Sunnis, who support the Syrian uprising, traded fire in Lebanon using assault rifles and rocket propelled grenades. Five people were killed and 100 were wounded in Lebanon's second-largest city.

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Mon May 14, 2012
Environmental Watchdog

Coal Use Continues to Decrease

The federal government has released its short-term energy outlook, and the news isn’t good for coal. This time last year, about 44 percent of America’s electricity was generated from coal. Now, that share has fallen to 36 percent. The news was predictably rosy for natural gas: low prices and increased environmental controls on coal mean more plants are burning gas, and natural gas has continued to expand its generation share.

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Mon May 14, 2012

UK School of Music Receives New Technology with Pianos

UK Vocal Major Rebecca Farley sings along to a new Yamaha Disklavier Piano. 18 of the instruments were delivered to the UK School of Music this week.
Whitney Hale

UK Music Students and their instructors have been ushered into the digital age with some new equipment introduced this week. The University of Kentucky School of Music is the proud owner of some 18 new, state of the art Yamaha Disklavier pianos.  The instruments contain on-board computers that record, playback, and store musical arrangements.  They were dedicated and demonstrated at the Schmidt Vocal Arts Center on Monday.  Vocal Major Rebecca Farley sang a selection from Phantom of the Opera accompanied by, in essence, a phantom piano player.

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Mon May 14, 2012
The Commonwealth

State Honors Companies at Safety and Health Conference

Kentucky Labor Cabinet officials have recognized more than 40 companies that have taken the extra steps necessary to guarantee the health and safety of employees.The companies were honored during the Governor’s Safety and Health Conference and Exposition at Louisville’s Galt House East. The annual conference brings together nearly 600 professionals across the state to participate in safety training courses.

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Mon May 14, 2012
Health and Welfare

Outside MCO Attempting to Gain Foothold in Louisville

State officials have not yet given private Medicaid operators permission to do business in the Louisville area, but that hasn't stopped one company from trying to make inroads. Currently, Passport Health Plan runs Medicaid in and around Louisville. The federal government has ordered the state to open the region to competition, but the area remains closed. In anticipation of a change, United Healthcare recently sent letters to dental centers in the area, encouraging them to sign up with United once the state allows outside companies to begin operations.

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Mon May 14, 2012
The Salt

At Basque Cookings Clubs, Food And Fraternity Mix Heartily

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 5:52 pm

Enrique Vallejo serves soup at the Amaikak Bat txoko in San Sebastian.
Deena Prichep for NPR

Spring crops like asparagus and sorrel are poking up all over the hemisphere. And in the autonomous region of Northern Spain known as Basque Country, people are taking that spring harvest to a txoko.

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Mon May 14, 2012
National Security

Military Looks To Redefine PTSD, Without Stigma

Originally published on Mon May 14, 2012 7:49 pm

The U.S. military is trying to encourage service members and veterans to seek treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder. The military is also seeking to remove any sense of stigma for receiving treatment. Here, military personnel attend a presentation on PTSD at Fort Hamilton Army Garrison in Brooklyn, N.Y., in 2009.
Chris Hondros Getty Images

The military and the Department of Veterans Affairs say they want more veterans and service members to get appropriate treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder, or PTSD.

That's why they're tweaking the way they define and treat PTSD. But if this approach works, it could add to the backlog of PTSD cases.

For years, the standard definition for post-traumatic stress disorder had a key feature that didn't fit for the military. It said that the standard victim responds to the trauma he or she has experienced with "helplessness and fear."

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