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Health

State report: Murder down, opiate deaths up

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

BOSTON — A new report by state health officials is showing a drop in violent crime, but continued problems with heroin overdose deaths and childhood asthma and obesity. The study by the Massachusetts Health Council, citing the most recent FBI crime report available, said that the state’s murder rate fell by 34 percent and all violent crime fell by 4.5 percent between 2011 to 2012. The study also confirmed the …

NY, NJ order quarantine for doctors, others

Saturday, October 25, 2014

NEW YORK — Alarmed by the case of an Ebola-infected New York doctor, the governors of New Jersey and New York on Friday ordered a mandatory, 21-day quarantine of all medical workers and other arriving airline passengers who have had contact with victims of the deadly disease in West Africa. The first person …

Dallas nurse receives thanks, hug from Obama

Saturday, October 25, 2014

BETHESDA, Md. — A nurse who caught Ebola while caring for a Dallas patient who died of the disease walked out of a Washington-area hospital virus-free Friday and into open arms. Nina Pham got a hug from President Barack Obama in the Oval Office at the White House. And outside the hospital where …

  • CAROL LOLLIS
left, Ali Pinschmidt, site manager of the Interfaith Winter Shelter, and Katie Miernecki, the director of Hampshire County Shelter and Housing Services get the Interfaith shelter ready to open.

    CAROL LOLLIS left, Ali Pinschmidt, site manager of the Interfaith Winter Shelter, and Katie Miernecki, the director of Hampshire County Shelter and Housing Services get the Interfaith shelter ready to open. Purchase photo reprints »

  • KEVIN GUTTING
Susan Barnett of Florence currently works two mornings a week in the Northampton High School office.

    KEVIN GUTTING Susan Barnett of Florence currently works two mornings a week in the Northampton High School office. Purchase photo reprints »

  • JERREY ROBERTS
Varun Sheel, left, and Curtis Barnes at the Fine Arts Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where they two are students.

    JERREY ROBERTS Varun Sheel, left, and Curtis Barnes at the Fine Arts Center at the University of Massachusetts Amherst, where they two are students. Purchase photo reprints »

Health Advice

Decision by Lee Hawkins to stop eating and drinking prompts new policy at VNA & Hospice of Cooley Dickinson

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — In June, Eleanor “Lee” Hawkins and her family approached Dr. Jeffrey Zesiger, with the VNA & Hospice of Cooley Dickinson, to talk about the end of her life. She was 90, frail, and though she loved life, she felt it was time to think about her …

CDC, UN release disease forecasts

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

In addition to being the largest Ebola outbreak in the world’s history, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports that this is the first Ebola epidemic to affect multiple countries and the first in West Africa. Although the risk of an Ebola outbreak in the United States …

Sierra Leone concludes Ebola lockdown

Sunday, September 21, 2014

FREETOWN, Sierra Leone (AP) — Frustrated residents complained of food shortages in some neighborhoods of Sierra Leone’s capital on Sunday as the country reached the third and final day of a sweeping, unprecedented lockdown designed to combat the …

Task force in Franklin County continues to address problems of opioid addiction

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

GREENFIELD — The area Opioid Task Force met Tuesday for a look at the big picture of addiction in Franklin County and to hear reports from subcommittees on housing, law enforcement and health care. The meeting at Greenfield Community College drew some 100 people, with representatives from the …

Retired Army Col. John Collins new director of VA Central Western Massachusetts Health Care System

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

NORTHAMPTON — Retired Army Col. John P. Collins, former chief of military health care in Europe, is the new director of the VA Central Western Massachusetts Health Care System. The Department of Veterans Affairs announced Collins’ appointment this …

Former NBA player Chris Herren to speak in Greenfield about his struggle with addiction

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

GREENFIELD — Chris Herren made it from the coastal city of Fall River to his home team, the Boston Celtics. His path was paved with stints in rehab as he struggled with escalating abuse of substances ranging from alcohol to cocaine, crystal meth and heroin. From the early …

Large cities seek to combat prescription opioid abuse

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

WASHINGTON — Some of the nation’s largest cities are ratcheting up their criticism of prescription painkillers, blaming the industry for a wave of addiction and overdoses that have ravaged their communities and busted local budgets. The heightened rhetoric comes as Chicago tries to recover millions in health care …

CDC study: American midriffs expanding fast

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

CHICAGO — The number of American men and women with big-bellied, apple-shaped figures — the most dangerous kind of obesity — has climbed at a startling rate over the past decade, according to a government study. People whose …

US stepping up Ebola aid

Monday, September 15, 2014

WASHINGTON — The American strategy on Ebola is two-pronged: Step up desperately needed aid to West Africa and, in an unusual step, train U.S. doctors and nurses for volunteer duty in the outbreak zone. At home, the goal …

FDA eyes Mass. school’s shock treatments

Sunday, September 14, 2014

CANTON — Some cut themselves. Others slam their heads against walls or desks — so hard that one girl detached both retinas and a young man triggered a stroke. Another pulled out all his teeth. Self-injury is one …