NPR Blogs

Shots - Health News
4:10 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Doctors Enlist Therapists To Deliver Better, Cheaper Care

Tyler Engel with his parents, Dave and Jennifer. His doctor and therapist worked with the family to help Tyler recover from a concussion.
Kristian Foden-Vencil OPB

Originally published on Wed October 23, 2013 12:21 pm

The state of Oregon is trying some experiments to bring different kinds of medical professionals under the same roof. Patients can see different kinds of doctors in one visit, and the hope is it will provide better patient care, eventually at less cost to the state.

This can make sense in a primary-care setting, where doctors often have to deal with stomachaches and migraines that stem from mental rather than physical problems.

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The Two-Way
3:39 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

The Capitol Dome Will Get A $60 Million Face-Lift

A rendering of the scaffold system that will surround the Capitol Dome during the restoration.
Architect of the Capitol

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 7:45 pm

The U.S. Capitol Dome is about to undergo a $60 million restoration. Construction is scheduled to begin in November and last for two years.

"From a distance the dome looks magnificent, thanks to the hard-work of our employees," the Architect of the Capitol Stephen T. Ayers says in a statement. "On closer look, under the paint, age and weather have taken its toll and the AOC needs to make repairs to preserve the Dome."

Ayers says this will be first time the dome will receive a complete makeover since the one it received in 1959 to 1960.

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The Two-Way
3:27 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Cuba To Phase Out Two-Peso Currency System

A woman displays Cuban pesos, or CUP (right) and the more valuable convertible pesos, or CUC (left), in Havana Tuesday. Raul Castro's government announced that it will begin unifying the two currencies.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 4:09 pm

Cuba will end the two-currency system it has used for nearly 20 years. Since the collapse of the Soviet Union, Cuba has used either American currency or a peso that's pegged to the dollar alongside its national peso.

The monetary unification will phase out a system that has become a symbol of exclusivity and foreign wealth. Many products that are imported into the country can be bought only with the dollar-based convertible peso. But most Cubans are paid in the standard peso, which is worth just a fraction of the other currency.

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Shots - Health News
3:19 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Want Your Daughter To Be A Science Whiz? Soccer Might Help

Very few girls get the recommended 60 minutes of exercise daily. But physical activity could help with school, a study says.
evoo73 Flickr

Originally published on Wed October 23, 2013 12:22 pm

Girls who were more physically active at age 11 did better at school as teenagers, a study finds. And the most active girls really aced science.

It's become pretty much a given that children do better academically when they get regular exercise, even though schools continue to cut or even eliminate recess time. But there's surprisingly little hard evidence to back that up.

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The Two-Way
1:46 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Former House Aide Lorraine Miller Named Interim NAACP Chief

Clerk of the House Lorraine Miller discusses legislation with then-Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi during a 2007 signing ceremony.
Chip Somodevilla Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 3:25 pm

The NAACP has selected Lorraine Miller, a former clerk at the House of Representatives, to the post of interim president and CEO to replace Benjamin Jealous.

The organization, the nation's largest and oldest civil rights group, made the announcement of Miller's appointment at its board meeting over the weekend.

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The Salt
1:30 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Meatless Monday Movement Gets More Veggies On The Menu

One of the meatless dishes prepared at Benson Brewery in Omaha, Neb., for Meatless Monday is zucchini ribbon salad with a dressing made from roasted garlic and tahini, and garnished with green onions and toasted pine nuts.
Courtesy of Vegan Omaha

Originally published on Wed October 23, 2013 3:31 pm

America's relationship with meat is an indulgent one. At 270 pounds of meat per person per year, Americans consume more than almost anyone else in the world. (Mostly, we have our livestock producers' successes to thank for making meat cheap and abundant for us.)

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The Two-Way
1:14 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Amazon Raises Minimum Purchase For Free Shipping By $10

Missed It By That Much: Amazon has raised its minimum price for free shipping to $35, meaning that horse masks — a popular item among reviewers — are subject to a shipping fee.
NPR

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 6:08 pm

Customers who hope to buy enough from Amazon's website to garner free shipping are now facing a higher bar, as the giant retailer raised its minimum order size from $25 to $35. The change took effect Monday, as the busy holiday shopping season looms.

"This is the first time in more than a decade that Amazon has altered the minimum order for free shipping in the US," the company said in announcing the change.

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The Two-Way
12:44 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Nuclear Plant Starts Up On India's Tsunami-Vulnerable Coast

An Indian Coast Guard plane flies over hundreds of anti-nuclear activists during a protest last year. The Kundankulam Nuclear Power, still under construction, can be seen in the distance.
AFP AFP/Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 2:34 pm

A controversial nuclear power plant situated on a stretch of India's southeastern coast that was hit hard by the 2004 Asian tsunami has begun supplying the grid with electricity, officials say.

The Kudankulam Nuclear Power Plant, a joint project with Russia located at the country's southern extremity in Tamil Nadu state, was connected to the grid on Tuesday, The Indian Express reports.

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Shots - Health News
12:28 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

How Health Law Affects Fertility Treatment, Health Savings Accounts

More questions. More answers.
iStockphoto.com

Originally published on Wed October 23, 2013 12:22 pm

The health insurance marketplaces are finally open, though technical problems have hindered sign-ups.

With the deadlines for having health insurance looming, people want details about the available plans and access to health savings accounts. Some also want to know about penalties if they don't buy insurance. Here are some recent questions and answers.

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The Two-Way
12:24 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

NCAA Won't Ban Miami Hurricanes From Bowls Over Booster's Gifts

The University of Miami's athletic director, Blake James, walks to an NCAA Committee on Infractions hearing in Indianapolis in June. The school's failings "enabled a culture of noncompliance," the NCAA said Tuesday, in announcing penalties for the school and its football and men's basketball coaches.
Michael Conroy AP

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 3:14 pm

The University of Miami "lacked institutional control" and didn't notice multiple violations by a booster who for years gave cash and gifts to athletes, the NCAA said. But the organization says the school's football team can play in the postseason, stopping short of the harshest punishment available.

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The Two-Way
12:19 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

As Smoke Blankets Sydney, Australians Brace For Worse Days

A general view of play as the Sydney skyline is shrouded in smoke during the Ryobi Cup match between the South Australian Redbacks and the Western Australia Warriors at Drummoyne Oval in Australia.
Mark Metcalfe Getty Images

Wildfires are burning to the north, south and west of Sydney, Australia, and smoke "has been rolling in for days," correspondent Stuart Cohen said Tuesday on Morning Edition.

While the fires are mostly in sparsely populated areas, Sydney is blanketed — "you can smell smoke inside buildings" and health authorities are expecting a surge in cases of people with respiratory problems, Cohen added.

Things may get worse.

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The Salt
12:14 pm
Tue October 22, 2013

Chocolate Fashions Make For A Truly Sweet Little Black Dress

Breakfast of chocolate at Tiffany's? Ten pounds of the dark, sweet stuff were used to craft this Audrey Hepburn-inspired dress and matching handbag, created by master chocolatier Mark Tilling of Squires Kitchen.
Photo: Paul Winch-Furness Courtesy of Salon du Chocolat

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 12:51 pm

If you find yourself sauntering down the runway wearing 40 pounds of chocolate, don't sweat it. Seriously — you might find yourself dripping on the audience.

So warns Fiona Bitmead, one of 10 models who showed off edible chocolate creations Friday night at the Salon du Chocolat in London. Five handlers helped her get dressed.

"[I] had to worry about a dress melting on me!" she says. "I can't say I've ever wanted to eat the dresses I've worn down the catwalk before."

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The Two-Way
11:05 am
Tue October 22, 2013

Teacher Who Died Trying To End Shooting Remembered As A Hero

A Sparks Middle School student cries with family members after a fellow student killed a math teacher and himself Monday in Sparks, Nev.
Kevin Clifford AP

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 12:46 pm

Michael Landsberry, the 45-year-old middle school math teacher and Afghan War veteran who was killed Monday trying to talk down a student shooter at a Nevada middle school, is being remembered as a hero.

Witnesses at Sparks Middle School in the city of Sparks, near Reno, described how Landsberry approached the armed 13-year-old boy and tried to get him to surrender a semi-automatic pistol he had used to shoot two fellow students. The boy then turned the weapon on Landsberry, fatally shooting him, before using the pistol to take his own life.

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The Two-Way
10:26 am
Tue October 22, 2013

Roma Couple Charged With Abducting Girl; Missing-Child Tips Pour In

A woman takes a call at the Greek charity The Smile of the Child, which is caring for a girl who police say was abducted by a Roma couple. Officials are trying to find her biological parents.
Thanassis Stavrakis AP

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 12:03 pm

Greek officials who are trying to determine the origin of a young blond girl found living in a Roma settlement last week have received thousands of calls since releasing her photo. Some callers offer information; others say the girl may be their child. The head of a charity that's now caring for the girl says about 10 missing-children cases are being reviewed.

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The Two-Way
9:01 am
Tue October 22, 2013

Fewer Jobs Than Expected In Sept., But Jobless Rate Fell

People looking for work were filling out applications earlier this month at a career fair in Emeryville, Calif.
Justin Sullivan Getty Images

Originally published on Tue October 22, 2013 12:20 pm

The nation's jobless rate ticked down to 7.2 percent in September from 7.3 percent in August, the Bureau of Labor Statistics said Tuesday.

But just 148,000 were added to public and private payrolls. That's below the 180,000 economists expected. It's yet another sign that job growth remains soft.

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