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It is a very sad day at ACSH. Our good friend Jimmy Capuano passed away yesterday after a seven-year battle with colon cancer. His battle was nothing short of extraordinary.

We began working with Jim in early 2013 after he nearly died from West Nile encephalitis in 2012. Jim contracted the disease from the bite of an infected mosquito while on vacation on New York s Fire Island. It was entirely preventable.

This incident resulted from a long-standing, misguided policy by the Village of Ocean Beach a small town on the island to opt out of the Suffolk County Department of Health mosquito spraying program, which allowed mosquitoes to flourish...

Bloomberg Businessweek has written another anti-Monsanto article, nothing special about that, but this time they did something new; they consciously sought to interfere in an environmental lawsuit against Monsanto in California and to promote fear and doubt about the science community and regulators who overwhelmingly accept the science consensus on genetically-modified foods - colloquially called GMOs, because Monsanto received a patent on that one kind of genetic engineering.

It's not the first time members of this team of Peter Waldman, Lydia Mulvany, Tiffany Stecker, and Joel Rosenblatt have...

So are baldness and height related? 

When one considers the category of bald men, are there more Dwayne Johnsons, Steve Ballmers and Samuel L. Jacksons out there ... or would we find the majority of hairless men to be like Jason Alexander, Andre Agassi and Danny Devito? 

German researchers from the University of Bonn are now giving us the answer – or more appropriately, shall we say ... the low down.

After studying the genetic material of more than 22,500 adult males from seven countries, they determined that "short men have an increased risk of becoming bald prematurely," according to a statement announcing today's publication of the...

Recently, I published an article More Bad News for Single Payer Health System detailing the reasons for a disastrous report recently generated out of London by the National Health Service (NHS) about poor quality of care for the sickest patients. Care that was deemed less than good for every four out of five cases with a climbing mortality rate of one in three all being attributed to sub-standard practices. (See here). (1)

Then, news came out from NHS England that the number of people waiting for routine surgery exceeded 4 million. The highest in a decade. The...

On the verge of a “national emergency,” regulatory experts from the National Health Service (NHS) Improvement body just released their latest review which reveals a crisis in workforce shortages. One in eleven jobs is vacant with nursing staff vacancies up 17% in only the last three months.

As BBC Health reports, this reality comes after “sustained efforts by ministers and NHS bosses to tackle the shortages, including a new pay deal and recruitment and retention campaigns.” Leadership referenced the situation as painting a “bleak picture” to acknowledging the burdens of increased demand, employee shortages...

The bad news just keeps coming out of England with respect to the state of the National Health Service (NHS) and its rapidly eroding quality of care. Most recently, Professor Ted Baker-- the new chief hospital inspector-- declared it was “not fit for the 21st century.”

His first interview revealed his sense of urgency regarding the need to reverse the so-called “normalization” of “wholly unsatisfactory” treatment that endangers patients and guard against unacceptable and unsafe practices of “piling patients into corridors” that lack staffing for sufficient oversight as well as undermine patient privacy and...

It might be nice if all scientific debates were conducted quietly, with no media attention to them at all. Instead, we get varying levels of media attention, each bringing a different degree of distortion to the underlying facts (as a random grab-bag of odd science and health stories from 2005 remind us) but occasionally offering enlightenment:

¢The worst-case scenario is a media circus like the spat between Tom Cruise and Brooke Shields over the value of psychiatry, with Cruise pushing the Scientology party line that psychiatry is sinister and destructive -- though he left out the embarrassing details about Scientology's claims that psychiatry distracts us from the true source of human misery: invisible space aliens called Thetans. Scientologists must have had a fun summer...

Disaster in Haiti
ACSH staffers are distraught by the tragedy in Haiti in the aftermath of the magnitude 7.0 earthquake that struck Tuesday evening about sixteen miles outside of the capital city of Port-au-Prince.

“The number one concern for the relief effort right now is clean water,” says ACSH's Dr. Elizabeth Whelan. “The survivors don't have clean, safe water, and it's horrible to say but the corpses lying around will continue to contaminate what supply there is. Terrible diseases often follow disasters of this sort. Incredible though it seems, there can be more devastation following...

As highest quality of care continues not to be the emphasis in the health care debate— let alone be on par with discussions around access, Canadian health systems remain in the spotlight. This time, multiple hospitals in southern Ontario shut their doors to the sickest of babies due to lack of beds for a 10% patient surge compared to the same time period last year.

According to Shawn Whatley, president of Ontario Medical Association, while pleading for increased funding, “These are our sickest patients. This is a reflection of our whole system. Our system...