Tuesday, February 2, 2010
The nasty political atmosphere in Washington is about to get toxic. In testimony before Congress today, Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner called on Republicans to help the Obama administration tame the budget deficit, expected to hit a record $1.56 trillion. The gap is still slated to top $1 trillion even with the spending freeze proposed by Obama. But then Geithner promptly blamed the Bush administration for leaving a trail of unpaid bills that created the current fiscal mess.
High-school students are typically told that a college degree will earn them $800,000 extra in their lifetime. But new analysis shows that that information is not accurate, and that a college degree may not be as valuable as it was once hailed to be. Mark Schneider, a vice president of the American Institutes for Research, said the calculation is "a million-dollar misunderstanding." He pointed out that account deductions and student-loan debt are not taken into consideration, and that the income used for the Census estimates were from 1999, when tuition was more than $10,000 less per year. In his own estimates, Dr. Schneider calculated a lifetime-earnings average for college graduates of $279,893, a far cry from the $800,000 figure that the College Board puts on its Web site. "Averages don't tell the whole story," said president of the Institute for College Access & Success Lauren Asher. "The truth is that no one can predict for you exactly what you're going to earn," she says.
The tortoiseshell and white cat spends its days pacing from room to room, rarely spending any time with patients except those with just hours to live
Cat predicts 50 deaths in RI nursing home
A cat with an uncanny ability to detect when nursing home patients are about to die has proven itself in around 50 cases by curling up with them in their final hours, according to a new book.
Major Study. Important given the growing consensus of impact of multiple partners and Hepatitis B and C.
Onset of Sexual Activity in Tweens Delayed by Theory-Based Abstinence-Only Program
ScienceDaily (Feb. 2, 2010) — A new study weighs in on the controversy over sex education, finding that an abstinence-only intervention for pre-teens was more successful in delaying the onset of sexual activity than a health-promotion control intervention. After two years, one-third of the abstinence-only group reported having sex, compared to one-half of the control group. The study by researchers at the University of Pennsylvania appears in the February 1 edition of the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine.
A total of 662 African American students in grades 6 and 7 participated in this randomized controlled trial, which was held on Saturdays in classrooms at four public schools participating in the study. The students were randomly assigned to an 8-hour abstinence-only intervention, an 8-hour safer sex-only intervention, an 8- or 12-hour combined abstinence and safer-sex intervention, or an 8-hour health-promotion control group. Participants in the comprehensive intervention had reduced reports of multiple sexual partners compared with the control group (8.8 percent vs. 14.1 percent).
Increasing magnesium intake may be a valid strategy to enhance cognitive abilities
New research finds that an increase in brain magnesium improves learning and memory in young and old rats.
Because it is difficult to boost brain magnesium levels with traditional oral supplements, Dr. Liu and colleagues developed a new magnesium compound, magnesium-L-threonate (MgT) that could significantly increase magnesium in the brain via dietary supplementation. They used MgT to increase magnesium in rats of different ages and then looked for behavioral and cellular changes associated with memory.
HEALTHCARE NEWS: Canadian Premier comes to U.S. for surgery. From the comments: “Seems to me that when our Premier goes to the US for heart surgery, the analogy that comes to mind would be if the President of General Motors said ‘Our GM cars are fantastic, but myself — I own a Ford.’”
UPDATE: Reader Geoff Coghlin writes:
I’m a Canadian in Australia, and a great fan of your blog.
The premier heading south is not new. The Canadian political elite has long headed to the US for medical services while – with straight faces – extolling the virtues of socialized medicine for everyone else. And US hospitals are always used to back up a system in Canada that can’t meet demand.
It prompts the question: If the US adopts Obamacare, how will the Canadian health care system survive?