New York Times

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And We Thought Pandemics Were Bad...Time to Examine The Threat from Microplastics

The ocean full of microplastics, and fish are as well. They're in our drinking water. Indeed, "There's no nook or cranny on the surface of the earth that won't have microplastics," Professor Janice Brahney told The New York Times. Dr. Brahney was coauthor on a recent study that found microplastics were pervasive even in supposedly pristine parts of the Western U.S. They estimated that 1,000 tons of "plastic rain" falls every year onto protected areas there; 98% of soil samples they took had microplastics. Dr. Brahney pointed out that, because the particles are both airborne and fine, "we're breathing it, too." She admitted: "It's really unnerving to think about it."

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Calling Obesity A Disease: Is This About Health Or Is It About Money?

William Anderson | Huffington Post | July 9, 2013

In case you've been on vacation the last month and incommunicado, the New York Times on June 18 reported that the AMA has officially declared that obesity is a disease, not just a physical condition. Since then, the media, the Internet and the medical community have erupted in a frenzy of stories and opinions. Read More »

Dear New York Times: Next Time, Dig Deeper Into The EHR Vendor Industry

Marla Durben Hirsch | FierceEMR | February 26, 2013

There's been quite an outpouring of sentiment about last week's New York Times article "A Digital Shift on Health Data Swells Profits in an Industry", most of it negative. Many of the 525 comments that the article received blasted electronic health record systems themselves... Read More »

Did Commercial Journals Use The NYT To Smear Open Access?

David Bollier | David Bollier | April 11, 2013

A story on the front page of the New York Times a few days ago cleverly smeared open access scholarly publishing as somehow responsible for the rise of low-quality, pseudo-academic conferences and OA journals. Read More »

Do Unto Robots As You...

We're going to have robots in our healthcare system (Global Market Insights forecasts assistive healthcare robots could be a $1.2b market by 2024), in our workplaces, and in our homes. Some of them will be unobtrusive, some we'll interact with frequently, and some we'll become close to. How to treat them is something we're going to have to figure out. Written by Alex Williams, Do You Take This Robot...focuses on people actually falling in love with (or at least preferring to be involved with) robots. Sex toys, even sex robots, have been around, but this takes it to a new level. The term for it is "digisexual." As Professor Neil McArthur, who studies such things, explained to Discover last year...

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DoD Finds Health Problems Similar To What VA Faces

Richard Sisk | Military.com | July 7, 2014

The Defense Department has acknowledged systemic problems in the vast Military Health System (MHS) for active-duty and retired troops similar to the pattern of poor care and management that has plagued the Department of Veterans Affairs...

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Giant GSK Settlement Provides Reminder of the Pervasiveness of Stealth Marketing

Roy M. Poses | Health Care Renewal | July 5, 2012

The latest  and biggest legal settlement involving health care to hit the news, that of GlaxoSmithKline (GSK) and the US government, has many familiar elements. [These documents] provide good documentation about how pervasive systematic, deceptive stealth marketing campaigns have become in health care. Read More »

Improving Quality Patient Outcomes A Money Loser For Hospitals

Evan Albright | Forbes | April 17, 2013

Surgical patients who have complications generate better margins for hospitals, a new study  in the Journal of American Medical Association has found. Cue the outrage from the consumer media about “profit-hungry hospitals.” Read More »

In Military Care, a Pattern of Errors but Not Scrutiny

Sharon LaFraniere and Andrew W. Lehren | New York Times | June 28, 2014

Since 2001, the Defense Department has required military hospitals to conduct safety investigations when patients unexpectedly die or suffer severe injury. The object is to expose and fix systemic errors, often in the most routine procedures, that can have disastrous consequences for the quality of care. Yet there is no evidence of such an inquiry into Mrs. Zeppa’s death.

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Is China Already in the 21st Century in the Fields of AI for Healthcare and Quantum Computing?

It is 2018 everywhere, but not every country is treating being in the 21st century equally. China is rushing into it, even in healthcare, while the United States is tip-toeing its way towards the future. Especially in healthcare. Ready or not, the future is here...and the U.S. may not be ready...Artificial Intelligence: Yes, the U.S. has been the leader in A.I., with some of the leading universities and tech companies working on it. That may not be enough. A year ago China announced that it intended to be the world leader in A.I. by 2025. The Next Web recently concluded that China's progress since then "remains unchecked." China is far outspending the U.S. on A.I. research and infrastructure, coordinating efforts between government, research institutes, universities, and private companies. Dr. Steven White, a professor at China's Tsinghua University, "likens the country's succeed at all costs AI program to Russia's Sputnik moment." We have yet to have that wake-up call...

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Is Health Insurance Itself the Problem with the System?

I worked in the health insurance industry for a long time.  I helped introduce consumer-driven/high deductible plans to help foster cost-awareness.  I bought into the protection-against-big-expenses meme.  I personally have never not had health insurance.  So, by most standards, I should be biased in its favor.  But I'm beginning to wonder if health insurance itself is the problem, or at least a big part of the problem. I've written before about some of the new entrants into health insurance; more power to them, and the more the merrier.  What I continue to be disappointed by is that we're not really seeing fundamentally new approaches to what health insurance is.

No Link Found for Deaths and Veterans’ Care Delays

Richard A. Oppel, Jr. | New York Times | August 25, 2014

An investigation by the watchdog office for the Department of Veterans Affairs has been unable to substantiate allegations that 40 veterans may have died because of delays in care at the veterans medical center in Phoenix, according to a letter from the new secretary of Veterans Affairs. Read More »

Open Source Solutions For Public Health Case Reporting and COVID-19

The United States is continuing its slow emergence from a nation-wide shut down imposed to slow down the spread of COVID-19. Most states have started to reopen, with bars, restaurants, and many workplaces starting to fill. As people begin to spend more time together again, it is critically important that public health agencies do everything they can to help prevent further spread of the infection and continue to monitor the level of infection within the population. Data is an important tool that public health has to understand what is going on in the country. Years of limited government investment and neglect of current systems has limited public health's ability to meet the challenges of managing both localized outbreaks and pandemics.

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Publisher Threatens Librarian Jeffery Beall With $1 Billion Dollar Lawsuit

Gary Price | Library Journal | May 15, 2013

U. of Colorado, Denver librarian Jeffery Beall has been mentioned a couple of time on infoDOCKET lately. We first shared a post about him and his work to shed light on predatory/questionable open access publishers when he was featured in a NY Times article last month. Read More »

Revealed: The World's Most & Least Advanced Countries

Matthew Bishop | LinkedIn | April 4, 2014

UNTIL recently, the popular way to compare the progress of one country relative to another was to use the size of their economies. America had the biggest GDP (and almost the biggest per capita GDP), so it stood to reason it was the most advanced country in the world.

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