There are many ways to ease the pangs of loneliness, illness, and old age –among them, spending time with a friendly animal companion. More than ten thousand animals are currently registered as care workers in the United States - only fourteen of them however, are llamas. I recently spoke with llama trainer Niki Kuklenski of J.N.K. Llamas about how this unusual animal is playing a role in human therapy.
The new health exchanges are often described as something akin to Orbitz or Travelocity. A central place--a website--where insurance can be researched, compared, and purchased.
“Competition in markets, of course, is the way in this country we try to make reasonable prices and good quality available to people and so that is one of their roles,” says Professor Timothy Jost with Washington and Lee University in Virginia.
Jost says another key role of the exchanges is subsidies.
As part of the Affordable Care Act, pharmaceutical company payments to doctors will become public information starting in 2014. But a slice of those disclosures is already available, and the impact of transparency is being felt across New Hampshire.
In the last four years, New Hampshire doctors and nurse practitioners have taken in $5.8 million in money from drug companies.
A report out today estimates that 96,000 New Hampshire residents will be eligible for health insurance tax credits under the Affordable Care Act. The credits will be available starting in January, 2014, when the individual mandate kicks in.
The Chairman of the Society of Forest Medicine at Nippon Medical School in Tokyo, Japan Dr. Qing Li, studies nature’s effect on the human immune system. A person’s natural immune cells called “NK cells” can be reliably measured in a lab. NK cells function like white blood cells to increase resistance to illness including cancer by sending self-destruct messages to tumors and virus-infected cells. Stress, aging and pesticides reduce NK counts.
With an October 1st deadline looming, the state continues to move forward with implementation of a partnership health exchange. In agreeing to that partnership, state Republicans say they were promised input on a planning document called a Memorandum of Understanding, or MOU.
But last week, the Feds said partner states don’t have to submit an MOU. Republicans say that shuts them out of the legislative process.
On Thursday, the New Hampshire State Senate is scheduled to vote on a bill that’s getting a lot of attention in the dental community. The measure would expand the role of some hygienists. Advocates say this could help increase access in the state, but dentists argue it’s a misguided solution for a problem that may not exist.
Our niftiest and spiffiest content, all in one great show. This week, a look at the shifting human condition. Holocaust survivors being turned into holograms, a Russian "Swiss Family Robinson" that missed most of the 20th Century, corporate anthropologists, transplant "tourism," the nasty effect of internet comments, and a former professor pens a memoir about being stalked by an ex- student online.