Feb. 14 - 18, 2011

Clinic breaks barriers (Opinion-Editorial Column)
The Chapel Hill News
...The UNC Center for Latino Health is a "virtual" clinic that has no permanent or fixed location within the UNC Health system. Instead, the clinic sets up space at existing departments and intake centers in the hospital system for a period of time and provides health care to Latinos completely in Spanish. It does not interfere with the normal operation at the hospitals. (Paul Cuadros is a professor at the UNC School of Journalism and Mass Communication.)

The human genome project, 10 years in: Did they oversell the revolution?
The Globe and Mail (Canada)
It was billed as one of the pivotal moments in the history of medicine. A decade ago this month, researchers published their long-awaited results of deciphering the human genome – providing the genetic blueprint of our species. ...The article, “Deflating the Genomic Bubble,” was penned by geneticist James Evans of the University of North Carolina, bioethicist Eric Meslin of Indiana University, psychologist Theresa Marteau of King’s College London and law professor Timothy Caulfield of the University of Alberta.

FDA flags risks on popular drug used during pregnancy
USA Today
...As much as doctors and mothers might wish that the drug helps prolong pregnancy, "there's no proof of effectiveness," said John Thorp, who has helped the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality review the scientific evidence. Serious heart problems are rare, but the drug routinely triggers other side effects. Women sometimes feel jittery and have fast heart rates and difficulty sleeping, said Thorp, a professor of obstetrics at the University of North Carolina.

Salix relocating to Raleigh; expansion opens door for new jobs
The Triangle Business Journal
...UNC School of Medicine associate professor Dr. Yehuda Ringel is bullish about the drug’s success in bringing patients relief of their IBS symptoms. Ringel was a co-author of a study funded by Salix and published in the Jan. 6 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine. Two studies showed that benefits of the treatment lasted for 10 weeks after patients stopped taking the drug.

Medicaid costs and cures (Opinion-Editorial Column)
The News & Observer (Raleigh)
Gov. Bev Perdue and the General Assembly face the unenviable task of patching up a budget with a $2 billion-plus hole in it. Although all state expenditures are on the block, there has been recent sentiment for targeting the Department of Health and Human Services, which is the second-largest piece of the budget and includes Medicaid, the federal-state health insurance program for children, low-income parents, older adults and people with disabilities. (Dr. Timothy Daaleman is the vice chair of the Department of Family Medicine at UNC-Chapel Hill.)

Lawsuit alleges sex abuse by Boston pediatrician
The News & Observer (Raleigh)
A former pediatrician is accused a lawsuit filed Thursday of giving medically unnecessary genital exams to dozens of boys over nearly two decades.

WakeMed wants to add rehabilitation beds
The News & Observer (Raleigh)
UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill plans to submit a proposal but was still considering options late last week, said spokesman Karen McCall. The Duke University Health System also runs a rehab facility at Durham Regional Hospital and may seek to expand it. There is also one in Henderson at Maria Parham Hospital, which Duke has proposed buying with a for-profit partner.

How to fight winter’s ailments
Three University of North Carolina medical professionals explain how to stay healthy in cold weather...“This is the most severe of the respiratory diseases,” said David Weber, MD, MPH, professor of infectious diseases and pediatrics in the UNC School of Medicine and professor of epidemiology at the UNC Gillings School of Global Public Health.

Enrollment cuts avoided by health affairs schools
The Daily Tar Heel
Despite Monday’s announcement that the School of Nursing will cut enrollment by 25 percent for the upcoming year, University officials said Wednesday that similar enrollment cuts will not be made by other health affairs schools...Next fall, the School of Medicine will add 10 students, making its total matriculating enrollment 170.

N.C. Children’s Hospital uses volunteer cuddlers to comfort young patients
The Daily Tar Heel
For two hours every week, Pam Bordsen cuddles. She is one of about 45 trained pediatric cuddlers that volunteers at N.C. Children’s Hospital. At any time, at least three cuddlers are searching for upset children who need to be held, comforted or entertained.

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