Health en Overcoming Unique Challenges With Doctors Without Borders <p>Last November, Typhoon Haiyan, a powerful tropical cyclone devastated portions of Southeast Asia, particularly the Philippines.</p><p>When cataclysmic events such as this happen, many organizations are dispatched to these areas to provide medical treatment and aid.</p><p><a href=""><span class="st">Médecins Sans Frontières/</span>Doctors Without Borders </a>is one such group providing help. Brett Davis, an aid worker for Doctors Without Borders recently returned from the Philippines. Fri, 18 Apr 2014 17:10:00 +0000 Essential Pittsburgh 27796 at Overcoming Unique Challenges With Doctors Without Borders Can Food Trucks Help Solve Pittsburgh's Food Desert Dilemma? <p>Food trucks are commonplace in cities such as Los Angeles or New York, but Pittsburgh has had a hard time embracing the mobile eateries.</p><p>All that could change with Farm Truck Foods.</p><p>Awesome Pittsburgh, which gives grants to people "with brilliant ideas," this week awarded the company $1,000 for its proposed solution to the city’s food desert dilemma.</p> Wed, 16 Apr 2014 17:19:24 +0000 Michael Lynch 27662 at Allegheny County Commits to Highmark Through 2015 <p>Allegheny County employees no longer have to wonder about their health care options for 2015.</p><p>Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald announced Tuesday that the county will exclusively retain Highmark for health care coverage through December 31<sup>st</sup>, 2015 - even if Highmark and UPMC are unable to reach an agreement.</p> Tue, 15 Apr 2014 18:48:23 +0000 Jessica Nath 27611 at New Computer Program Helps Identify Causes of Asthma <p>Can depression lead to asthma? How about over-medicating?</p><p>Researchers from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) and UPMC are trying to answer these questions with a new computer program that has the ability to track 112 clinical variables for 398 people who do and do not have asthma.</p><p>This program can identify various subtypes of the disease such as asthma related to allergies, sinuses or environmental factors.</p><p>Wei Wu, an associate professor at CMU’s Lane Center for Computational Biology, said they want to help clinicians better define “asthma.”</p> Mon, 14 Apr 2014 07:30:00 +0000 Jessica Nath 26973 at Ways to Help Young People Cope with Traumatic Events <p></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">In the wake of the violent attacks at Franklin Regional High School, students and staff at the school have begun the process of coping with the traumatic event. </span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">For young people this can be a particularly difficult journey. The Center for Victims is a </span><a href="" style="line-height: 1.5;">victim advocacy</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> group which offers support for those affected by violence. </span></p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Diane </span>Dahm<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> is director of prevention education and outreach and </span>Toya<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> Jones is a trauma therapist with the center. They explained how important it is to maintain a child's sense of normalcy&nbsp;while still keeping alert to any possible </span><a href="" style="line-height: 1.5;">signs of trauma</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;">.&nbsp;</span></p><p> Thu, 10 Apr 2014 20:01:53 +0000 Katherine Blackley 27353 at Ways to Help Young People Cope with Traumatic Events Steps for Older Adults to Reduce the Risk of Falling <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Among people 65 and older, falling is a dangerous reality. Yet a new program has reduced falls among the elderly by 17 percent statewide according to the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health. </span><a href=";letter=%25&amp;type=Primary+Faculty&amp;pagesize24=true&amp;uid=1" style="line-height: 1.5;">Steven Albert is</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> </span><a href=";letter=%25&amp;type=Primary+Faculty&amp;pagesize24=true&amp;uid=1" style="line-height: 1.5;">Chairman</a><span style="line-height: 1.5;"> of the Department of Behavioral and Community Health Services and says older adults often do not realize the severity of their falling risk.&nbsp;</span></p><p> Tue, 08 Apr 2014 20:33:40 +0000 Katherine Blackley 27210 at Steps for Older Adults to Reduce the Risk of Falling Report: More Cases of Cancer, But Fewer Deaths in Pennsylvania <p>More people in Pennsylvania are being diagnosed with cancer, but less are dying.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">That’s according to the American Society of Clinical Oncology (</span>ASCO<span style="line-height: 1.5;">), which released the State of Cancer Care in America: 2014 — the first-ever <a href="">report</a> of its kind.</span></p><p>According to ASCO, the report provides a “comprehensive look” at demographic, economic and oncology practice trends and how they will affect the United States in the future.</p> Tue, 08 Apr 2014 20:11:58 +0000 Jessica Nath 27217 at First-Of-Its-Kind Medical Trial To Place Patients Between Life and Death <p></p><p>Last week, the trauma center at UPMC Presbyterian began a medical trial using critically injured gunshot and knife wound patients. It’s similar to suspended animation, but surgeons are calling it Emergency Preservation and Resuscitation.</p><p>The patients will not quite be alive, but they also won't quite be dead.</p> Tue, 08 Apr 2014 11:28:51 +0000 Erika Beras 27149 at Dispute Over Disabled Man's Care Magnifies Guardianship’s Complexities <p>Rarely is there so much tension — or so much at stake — around giving someone hope for a family reunion as in the case of Dominic Pantoni.<br /><br />Every month, Dominic intently waits at the door of his group home for his mother to arrive, and he immediately asks her, “When’s the next hearing?”<br /><br />A court hearing, in Dominic's eyes, means going home, or at least leaving a place that he calls prison, said his mother, Nancy Pantoni. She has been trying since 2010 to change legal guardianship of her 27-year-old son, who has intense special needs because of a genetic disorder. Sun, 06 Apr 2014 12:13:13 +0000 Halle Stockton | PublicSource 27093 at Dispute Over Disabled Man's Care Magnifies Guardianship’s Complexities Food Inspections OK At Pitt-Johnstown After Campus Hit By Norovirus <p>Officials at the University of Pittsburgh-Johnstown say state inspectors found no food safety problems as investigators continued to trace the source of a norovirus that has sickened 176 people.</p><p>An online report by the state Department of Agriculture's Bureau of Food Safety showed no violations at the campus dining hall and other food outlets operated by Sodexo Inc.</p><p>The state Department of Health earlier this week cleared the school to reopen.</p> Fri, 04 Apr 2014 16:15:55 +0000 The Associated Press 27027 at Time Will Tell When it Comes to the Benefits of E-Cigarettes <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Some view e-cigarettes as a means to help them stop smoking. This is one reason for their increase in popularity. However, they may not be a safer alternative to traditional cigarettes.&nbsp;</span><span style="line-height: 1.5;">They’ve also been blamed for a number of <a href="">poisonings nationwide</a>. </span></p> Thu, 03 Apr 2014 20:03:41 +0000 Essential Pittsburgh 26967 at Time Will Tell When it Comes to the Benefits of E-Cigarettes Donate Life Month Kicks off in April <p>More than 120,000 people across the United States are waiting for an organ transplant — 8,300 in Pennsylvania alone.</p><p>April is National Donate Life Month, recognizing those who need transplants, those who have donated and encouraging more people to do so.</p> Wed, 02 Apr 2014 11:46:49 +0000 Jessica Nath 26826 at Pittsburgh Firefighters Ask PA Lawmakers To Ban Chemicals In Flame-Retardant Furniture <p>Pittsburgh firefighters are asking state lawmakers to ban chemicals found in flame-retardant furniture.</p><p>According to Pittsburgh Firefighters Deputy Chief Frank Large, studies have found that these chemicals increase the number of cancer deaths in firefighters inhaling the chemicals. Flame-retardant materials that are found in 85 percent of couches in American homes become carcinogens when ignited in a house fire.</p><p>Large says firefighters are given state of the art technology to filter the smoke they breathe in, but that isn’t enough to protect them from these chemicals.</p> Thu, 27 Mar 2014 14:10:56 +0000 Haldan Kirsch 26517 at Cathedral Of Learning To Shine Blue For Autism Awareness <p>If you’re traveling around Pittsburgh next Wednesday, you might be seeing blue, as more than a dozen buildings across the city are shining a light on autism, including the University of Pittsburgh’s Cathedral of Learning.</p><p>The cathedral is one of more than 8,400 buildings and landmarks around the world are participating in this year’s “Light It Up Blue” campaign to raise autism awareness, including Pittsburgh’s Gulf Tower, BNY Melon Building, and the Carnegie Science Center.</p> Wed, 26 Mar 2014 19:21:24 +0000 Michael Lynch 26506 at Pittsburgher Takes on Diabetes Education as National Chair <p>When the National Diabetes Education Program gathers for its annual meeting this summer it will install a Pittsburgher in its top elected position.&nbsp; University of Pittsburgh Diabetes Institute Executive Director Linda Siminerio was elected as chair earlier this year.</p><p>The federally-funded program is sponsored by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ National Institutes of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.&nbsp; Siminerio refers to the nation’s struggle with type II diabetes as an epidemic but warns that it is already a pandemic in other parts of the world. Tue, 25 Mar 2014 18:21:58 +0000 Mark Nootbaar 26446 at Pittsburgher Takes on Diabetes Education as National Chair Can Texting Lead To Better Concussion Treatments? <p>Text messaging can serve a variety of purposes, from casually chatting with friends to ordering a pizza, but what about monitoring concussion symptoms?</p><p>Some, like researcher Stephanie Huang think it could be a tool for providing more personalized health care.</p><p>Thanks to a grant from the Pittsburgh Emergency Medicine Foundation, the first-year student from Rutgers Robert Wood Johnson Medical School is coming to Pittsburgh to see if texting is a more effective way of getting patients to monitor their own concussion treatments.</p> Mon, 24 Mar 2014 18:17:41 +0000 Michael Lynch 26367 at Pitt Researchers Working to Build Better Regrowing Arteries <p>University of Pittsburgh Swanson School of Engineering researchers are developing a way to help arteries regrow with less risk of an aneurysm after a coronary bypass surgery.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Arturo </span>Valentin<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> and his team are attempting to use new polymers in artery replacements as a way to prevent aneurysm formation.</span></p><p>He said they are working to create an “in host remodeled graft.”</p> Mon, 24 Mar 2014 07:30:00 +0000 Jessica Nath 26196 at Hepatitis Bill Promotes Quicker Testing <p>Nearly 200,000 Pennsylvanians have hepatitis C and don’t know it, and new legislation could help them find out.</p><p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">The bill would require health care providers to offer hepatitis C testing to baby boomers, people born between 1945 and 1965.</span></p><p>Rep. Matt Baker (R-Bradford), the bill sponsor, said a greater emphasis on testing would save lives.</p> Fri, 21 Mar 2014 01:58:11 +0000 Julian Routh 26177 at As Deadline Nears, Allegheny County Makes 'One Last Push' For Health Care Enrollment <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">With just two weeks left to sign up for health insurance through state and federal online exchanges, Allegheny County Executive Rich Fitzgerald has declared March 17-23, 2014 to be Affordable Care Act Week in Allegheny County.</span></p><p>Fitzgerald said county officials are working with nearly three dozen partner organizations on “one last push to encourage residents to get all the information and be able to enroll in the marketplace.”</p> Tue, 18 Mar 2014 11:51:17 +0000 Liz Reid 26017 at As Deadline Nears, Allegheny County Makes 'One Last Push' For Health Care Enrollment 'Project 22' Releases Official Trailer <p>The U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs released a report last year stating that an estimated 22 veterans commit suicide every day.</p><p>That number hit home for Marine Sgt. Daniel Egbert and Army Sgt. Matt King; both of whom served in Iraq. The two set out on a 22-day road trip from Los Angeles to Ground Zero in New York, producing a documentary focused on raising awareness about veteran suicide.</p><p>That documentary is "Project 22."</p> Mon, 17 Mar 2014 07:30:00 +0000 Michael Lynch 25856 at Kids Encouraged to Stand Up to Tobacco Industry <p>On March 19, kids across the country will show that the battle against the tobacco industry isn’t only fought in the courtroom, but on the playground.</p><p>The 19<sup>th</sup> annual Kick Butts Day, organized by the Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids, is a celebration of youth leadership and activism in the battle against smoking and tobacco marketing.</p> Mon, 17 Mar 2014 07:30:00 +0000 Julian Routh 25861 at Efforts Made to Reduce Prescription Drug Abuse <p>According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 50 people die every day from prescription drug overdoses nationwide, and the commonwealth and a physicians group want stricter regulations for Pennsylvania.</p><p>“Prescription drugs are getting into the wrong hands via many different channels … This is an issue we are taking very seriously at the Medical Society, and believe that physicians need to play their role in fighting this crisis,” said Michael Fraser Executive, vice president of the Pennsylvania Medical Society.</p> Tue, 11 Mar 2014 01:20:11 +0000 Jess Lasky 25611 at Can a Capsule Camera Replace the Colonoscopy? <p>Colon cancer is the second most common cancer-related death in the U.S.</p><p>The FDA has approved a new colonoscopy capsule which is a camera in pill form. There are many advantages to this capsule, but people are wondering if this new colon cancer detection device will replace the colonoscopy.</p><p>Dr. Edward Chu, deputy director of the University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute says that the pill is not a replacement for the colonoscopy. Mon, 10 Mar 2014 21:29:25 +0000 Essential Pittsburgh 25598 at Can a Capsule Camera Replace the Colonoscopy? UPMC Workers Ramp Up Union Organizing Campaign With Day of Action <p><span style="line-height: 1.5;">Hundreds of </span>UPMC<span style="line-height: 1.5;"> workers, community organizers, faith leaders, elected officials and concerned citizens descended on downtown Pittsburgh for a day of action Monday.</span></p> Mon, 03 Mar 2014 22:07:57 +0000 Liz Reid 25269 at UPMC Workers Ramp Up Union Organizing Campaign With Day of Action Study Shows Teen Stress Levels Higher Than Adults <p>Being a teenager is stressful — that’s no secret. But according to <a href="">a report released this month</a> by the American Psychological Association, U.S. teens are even more stressed out than their parents.</p><p>During the school year, teens report stress levels that exceed what they believe to be healthy. On a 10-point scale, teens experience a stress level of about 5.8, while adults said their levels sit at 5.1.</p> Mon, 03 Mar 2014 08:30:00 +0000 Michael Lynch 25028 at