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Health

Many African-Americans fall into a health ‘coverage gap’

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

WASHINGTON — Thanks to the Affordable Care Act, the percentage of people of color who do not have health insurance is projected to fall dramatically by 2016, greatly narrowing the historic disparities in coverage between whites and nonwhites. But one minority group is likely to benefit less than others: African-Americans. Fifty-five percent of all African-Americans reside in the 23 states that have not expanded Medicaid eligibility under the ACA. By …

Medicare to transform how it pays doctors, hospitals

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

WASHINGTON — The Obama administration outlined ambitious new goals Monday to transform over the next four years the way that the gargantuan Medicare program pays doctors and hospitals, rewarding providers that achieve better outcomes for patients rather than those that just do more. The move away from so-called fee-for-service medicine is a central, if little recognized, goal of the Affordable Care Act, which …

Despite its weak record in stopping the flu this season, doctors still say, Get the shot

Monday, January 26, 2015

While federal health officials say this year’s flu vaccine is less effective than in previous years, local doctors and nurses encourage people to get vaccinated anyway. “The flu shot and good hygiene are still your best frontline at preventing the flu,” said Cooperative Public Health Service Nurse Lisa White at the Franklin Regional …

  • JERREY ROBERTS
Haymarket Cafe, one of few downtown Northampton businesses open Tuesday due to the snowstorm, was a popular haven.

    JERREY ROBERTS Haymarket Cafe, one of few downtown Northampton businesses open Tuesday due to the snowstorm, was a popular haven. Purchase photo reprints »

  • MATT BURKHARTT
Lisa Leong of Williamsburg shovels the sidewalk in front of her home on North Main Street Tuesday January 27. Daytime accumulation of snow is estimated at 3 to 7 inches.

    MATT BURKHARTT Lisa Leong of Williamsburg shovels the sidewalk in front of her home on North Main Street Tuesday January 27. Daytime accumulation of snow is estimated at 3 to 7 inches. Purchase photo reprints »

  • KEVIN GUTTING
Christopher Montanez, left, 6, Joe Beaulieu and Miriam Rosas, all of Chicopee, talk Tuesday morning about their overnight stay at the Red Cross emergency shelter at Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School.

    KEVIN GUTTING Christopher Montanez, left, 6, Joe Beaulieu and Miriam Rosas, all of Chicopee, talk Tuesday morning about their overnight stay at the Red Cross emergency shelter at Smith Vocational and Agricultural High School. Purchase photo reprints »

Health Advice

Malaria, not Ebola, remains biggest killer in West Africa

Sunday, December 28, 2014

GUECKEDOU, Guinea — West Africa’s fight to contain Ebola has hampered the campaign against malaria, a preventable and treatable disease that is claiming many thousands more lives than the dreaded virus. In Gueckedou, near the village where Ebola …

Health Events: Area support groups, resources

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

PARENTING BREAST-FEEDING — The LaLeche League of Northampton meets on the first Friday of the month from 9:30 to 11 a.m. at Cradle on the third floor of Thornes Marketplace, Northampton. Call 586-5627 or contact Rosemary McNaughton at rosemarylll@mac.com. BREAST-FEEDING — The Birthing Center at Holyoke Medical Center …

Latex, food allergies go together as the number of products rise

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Lisa Batchelder of West Orange, N.J., first noticed it as a young adult. “When I carried a plastic bag on my arm, I got welts on my skin,” she recalled. After a similar reaction to an adhesive bandage, …

Check it out: Health briefs

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

Volunteer drivers needed The American Cancer Society’s Road to Recovery program is in need of volunteers from Franklin, Hampshire and Hampden county communities to drive local cancer patients to and from their chemotherapy and/or radiation treatments. Despite the critical nature of the treatment, many patients find making transportation …

December tops the list as the time for baby-making

Tuesday, December 23, 2014

If you’re among the hundreds of thousands of U.S. couples trying to get pregnant this season — and December is the most popular month for baby-making — experts say there are some lifestyle choices that could improve your …

Prepackaged caramel apples linked to four deaths

Friday, December 19, 2014

WASHINGTON — Health officials are warning consumers to avoid prepackaged caramel apples because they are linked to four deaths and more than two dozen illnesses in 10 states. Caramel apples are most popular around Halloween, and the outbreak started just before then, in mid-October. But the commercially produced …

Saint Francis to merge with Trinity Health

Thursday, December 18, 2014

HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Hartford-based Saint Francis Care has announced plans to merge with Trinity Health and form a nonprofit regional health system in New England. Trinity is a national system of Roman Catholic health care institutions that already includes the Sisters of Providence Health System in Springfield, …

Sierra Leone bans Christmas celebrations in effort to stop Ebola virus

Friday, December 12, 2014

Authorities in Sierra Leone have banned public Christmas and New Year’s celebrations in a bid to halt the spread of Ebola, according to local news reports. Paolo Conteh, who heads the country’s Ebola response, said troops would be deployed to prevent any street parties, and residents should spend …

NY doctor opens office in Greenfield to certify patients for medical marijuana use

Wednesday, December 10, 2014

GREENFIELD — One doctor has set up shop on Federal Street to certify patients for medical marijuana just as the state has provisionally approved a dispensary downtown. Dr. Kwesi Ntiforo has opened DocsConsult Medical at 106 Federal St. …

Check it out: Area health events and news briefs

Monday, December 8, 2014

Compiled by Debra Scherban dscherban@gazettenet.com HIP AND KNEE PAIN TALK The common causes of hip and knee pain, along with treatment options, will be discussed by surgeon Daniel Sage, Dec. 18 at Cooley Dickinson Hospital in Northampton. The free lecture will begin at 6 p.m. in the Dakin …