Editorial: GOP health care reform is a farce, badly acted at that

Americans are divided on what to do about health care, but they should be united in this conclusion: Senate Republicans’ manic approach to reforming a sector that represents one-sixth of the U.S. economy and determines life or death for millions of people is utterly craven and irresponsible. Related Articles Senate votes to launch debate on health care bill Commentary: No women, no health care bill Cartoons: Republican Senate health care bill fails The GOP health care collapse: What happened, what’s next? Photos: John McCain returns to U.S. Senate No expert testimony. No public hearings. Not even a public draft of what’s being considered, let alone an independent analysis. This is… Read More

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Readers weigh in on the latest twist in the Jahi McMath story

Word that UCLA neurologist Dr. Alan Shewmon believes that brain-dead Jahi McMath is actually still alive and may even be getting better not only brought new hope to her family, but it also triggered a new blast of comments by readers with strong and emotionally charged feelings about end-of-life dilemmas like the one facing the teenager’s family. The McMath case, like the story of terminally ill baby Charlie Gard in London, has touched a deep nerve with people around the globe. Now, with the latest twist in the heartbreaking McMath saga, followed by today’s statement from the Children’s Hospital defending their initial finding of brain death, the debate has grown… Read More

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Pruitt rolls out plan to streamline cleanup of Superfund sites

WASHINGTON — President Donald Trump’s environmental chief issued a list of directives on Tuesday he says will revitalize the federal program that cleans up hazardous waste sites. Environmental Protection Agency chief Scott Pruitt unveiled 42 recommendations from a Superfund Task Force he appointed in March. Among the steps Pruitt outlined will be prioritizing sites that can be redeveloped or where nearby residents are still under threat from the spread of harmful chemicals. Pruitt has pledged to make mitigating decades-old pollution a top priority for the EPA, even as he has moved to block or delay Obama-era regulations aimed at curbing ongoing contamination from coal-fired power plants and fossil-fuel production. READ… Read More

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The moon may be hiding a lot of water under its crusty exterior

It’s been there all along. For years, scientists suspected our moon was a dry expanse, void of water — until now. Planetary scientists from Brown University reported Monday that water exists across the lunar landscape in rocks called pyroclastics, and that those rocks originated from beneath the surface in the moon’s mantle. The findings, detailed in Nature Geoscience, challenge scientist’s understanding of how the moon formed. “Almost all examined pyroclastics show enhanced water features, supporting that the lunar mantle is ‘wet’ at a global scale,” Shuai Li, a planetary scientist and the study’s lead author, said via email. Scientists have been looking for water on celestial bodies beyond Earth as… Read More

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Bay Area kids with Type 1 diabetes seek funding in D.C.

When 12-year-old Chase Urban and four other Bay Area youths living with Type 1 diabetes meet Wednesday in the nation’s capital with their Congressional representatives, they will stress the importance of continued federal funding to help find a cure to a disease that affects 1.2 million Americans — both kids and adults. That’s why this biennial mission of 160 U.S. youth delegates of the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation’s “Children’s Congress” remains never-ending. Unlike the more prevalent Type 2 diabetes that is often diagnosed after age 40 and is initially treated with diet and exercise, Type 1 diabetes usually occurs during childhood. Type 1 diabetes is an auto-immune disease for which… Read More

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How states are fighting over women’s access to health care

As Washington moved to reduce federal funding for women’s health this year, adversaries in the war over affordable birth control and other women’s health services shifted the battleground to state capitals — resulting in a spate of new laws that both expand and contract women’s access to care. It happened quickly in Iowa. In May, then-Gov. Terry Branstad, a Republican, signed a bill defunding Planned Parenthood. Medicaid dollars stopped flowing to the group July 1, and four of the state’s Planned Parenthood clinics closed within a week. That left nearly 15,000 women in small communities without access to reproductive health services, including cancer screenings, birth control, testing for and treatment… Read More

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