Fri August 10, 2012

New York state gets failing grades for anti-smoking programs

Dale M Moore Flickr

The American Cancer Society has given New York state a mixed report card when it comes to cancer prevention. The group says the most glaring error is the lack of investment in anti-smoking campaigns.

The American Cancer Society has issued its annual report card, rating states on how well they are doing to prevent cancer through encouraging cancer screenings, banning smoking from public places, and smoking prevention programs.

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Mon July 30, 2012

Whooping Cough cases on the rise in New York state

The Centers for Disease Control is encouraging everyone to make sure they are vaccinated against pertussis -- commonly known as whooping cough. The CDC says New Yorkers in particular need to be protected against the disease.

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Thu July 5, 2012

Welch Allyn preparing for new tax on medical equipment

Starting next year, there will be a 2.3% excise tax on medical equipment, like this barcode scanner.
Connectologist via Flickr

Despite months of preparation, the CEO of Welch Allyn says a new excise tax on medical supplies will hurt his company's bottom line.

As part of the Affordable Care Act upheld last week by the Supreme Court, a 2.3 percent tax on medical devices sold in the United States will go into effect January 1. The tax is supposed to help pay for the expanded health care coverage.

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Tue June 19, 2012

Upstate Cancer Center construction under way

Ellen Abbott WRVO

The first of 550 tons of steel beams has been pounded into the foundation of the new Upstate Cancer Center in Syracuse.  Up to now, most of the work has been prepping the area next to the existing hospital entrance.  

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Mon June 18, 2012

Tanning limited for teens in New York state

Governor Andrew Cuomo and legislative leaders have agreed to limit the use of tanning beds by teenagers.

The bill will ban children 16 years and under from going to tanning salons. Seventeen-year-olds will still be allowed to use tanning beds with written permission from their parents.

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Fri June 15, 2012

Bath salts: Complaints and calls on the rise

Ellen Abbott WRVO

The misuse of the designer drug called bath salts continues to be in the news as the number of complaints about the drug is on the rise.

The death of a Munnsville woman is the latest central New York case involving the suspected use of the man-made drugs.

In all of 2011, there were 118 calls to the Upstate Poison Control Center about bath salts. This year there have been 141 so far.

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Thu June 14, 2012

Central New York counties take new steps to prevent EEE

Several New York counties are taking new steps to stop the Eastern equine encephalitis (EEE) virus.

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Wed May 30, 2012

New $300 million medical building opens in Buffalo

The 10-story Gates Vascular Institute/Clinical and Translational Research Center opened Thursday in Buffalo.
Daniel Robison Innovation Trail and WBFO

The newest addition to Buffalo’s skyline has opened its doors.

The 10-story, $300 million Gates Vascular Institute/Clinical and Translational Research Center houses a state-of-the-art surgery center, research labs and a business incubator.

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Wed May 30, 2012

Needle exchange program gives options to individuals in Syracuse

The needle exchange program van.
Ellen Abbott WRVO

All of New York state is now covered by a needle exchange program sponsored by the state health department.

Syracuse was one of the last communities to join the  program, and so far, it's working well.

The program's big silver van has a small sign that says, “Safety First: Syringe Exchange Program.” This is where IV drug users and others can exchange their dirty needles for  clean ones.

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Wed May 23, 2012

Potential for tick-borne illness increases after warm winter

Researchers are warning of a higher concentration of ticks this summer and thus more potential for tick-borne illnesses – like Lyme disease.

That’s because more ticks survived the warmer winter.

As a result, Senator Charles Schumer is pushing legislation that would increase education and research.

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Mon May 21, 2012

Technology could be key in allowing CNY residents an equal chance at healthy lives

There is a difference of up to 33 years of life expectancy depending on where you live in Central New York and there is no simple answer to creating equal health for all.

Economics, race and gender all figure into these health disparities but technology could play a major part in closing the healthcare gap found between many Americans.

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Thu May 17, 2012

Central NY health officials work to prevent EEE

Matt Johnston

Three people have died in the last three years in Central New York from the Eastern Equine Encephalitis virus, which can be spread from mosquitoes to  humans.

The deaths have sent scares across the region, and the health departments in Onondaga, Oswego, Madison, and Oneida Counties are taking it seriously.

“It is a rare disease, but it is a very fatal disease and I think that that is very frightening for everybody,” remarked Onondaga County Health Commissioner Cynthia Morrow.

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Fri May 11, 2012

Cancer Society seeks tan ban for 18 and under

gweggyphoto via Flickr

The American Cancer Society and other health groups are pressing for a law in New York state that would ban anyone under the age of 18 from using a tanning salon. They argue the growing risk of cancer to young people is too great a threat to ignore.

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Thu April 26, 2012

Organ donor registry now available online

MGShelton via Flickr

New York state is hoping that a new way to join the state's organ donor registry online will mean a longer list of potential donors. Central New Yorkers, who have had to make decisions about organ donations, are encouraging New Yorkers to log on.

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Fri March 30, 2012

The EPIC program returns just in time

When state lawmakers approved the budget this week, they restored a program that's vital to many senior citizens. Elderly Pharmaceutical Insurance Coverage, known as EPIC, helps low and moderate income seniors with co-pays for prescription drugs not covered by Medicare Part-D. When it was defunded last year, seniors were forced to pay 25% of the costs of prescriptions. This made necessary prescriptions unaffordable for some.

Pharmacists at drug stores like the Gifford and West Pharmacy in Syracuse ran into a lot of problems when EPIC stopped helping seniors pay for prescription drugs. Gifford pharmacist Jim McLaughlin encountered many patients who had high co-pays and were forced to pay.

"It ends up costing more. Patients go without their medications and their symptoms start to come back, or they end up being hospitalized," McLaughlin said.

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Thu March 29, 2012

Flu season peaks behind schedule

Flu season is peaking this week in Onondaga county, a month behind schedule. This year's flu bug is a particularly mild one. According to federal figures, this year reports the fewest cases since the 80s.

"I think that we're peaking now, which is a late peak, but our numbers were still going up as of last week... but very, very low numbers, not anything I'm concerned about," Onondaga County Health Commissioner Dr. Cynthia Morrow said. "But it is not over yet."

Morrow tracks flu numbers every year. She says that the mild winter could have something to do with lower numbers.

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Thu February 16, 2012

New hospice center set to open in Watertown

Hospice groups provide care and comfort to patients facing the end of their lives. Hospice of Jefferson County has a new building – but it’s more than that, since it represents a big upgrade in the kind of care it can offer to dying patients. 

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Mon December 19, 2011

Wandering Law provides piece of mind for loved ones

Eileen Krupka's father has suffered from Alzheimer's Disease for the last six years.  He's like many other's with the progressive neurological disease of the brain he wanders, in fact 60-percent of Alzheimers or dementia patients wander and its a worry for the Krupka family, who live in Baldwinsville.

We have a lot of water around us. and he seems to be fascinated by the water and that's a huge concern

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