Dec. 10 - 14, 2012

New program offers a leg up for veterans (Editorial)
The Chapel Hill Herald
...No doubt, administrators from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill had all of this in mind, and more, when developing a new program that appears to offer great potential in many ways. The University of North Carolina School of Medicine and the state’s largest insurer, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina, announced last week the creation of a two-year master’s degree program that is geared toward medical sergeants in the military. The degree will prepare the sergeants to be physician assistants.

UNC Partners With Blue Cross, Special Forces To Help Military Medics
WCHL-FM (Chapel Hill)
UNC’s School of Medicine is teaming up with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina to create a program that will help military medics continue to work in the healthcare field after they return from the army. Jaycee Burns Center Medical Director and UNC professor of surgery Dr. Bruce Cairns says the program is specifically geared toward medics who want to become physician assistants.

Gift to troops: Dust-free sinuses
The News & Observer (Raleigh)
Late last summer, UNC Hospitals ear, nose and throat nurse Katie Sams was talking by phone to her husband, Alex, a U.S. Army reservist serving at Camp Leatherneck in southern Afghanistan, and noticed that he had nasal congestion. “He said they’d had a lot of sandstorms, and he was having trouble breathing because so much had gotten into his nose and sinuses,” she said. The next day, she emailed Dr. Brent Senior, an ENT surgeon she works with, asking whether he thought the sales rep for the sinus rinse kits they used at the hospital might have a few extras they could send to the soldiers in Alex’s unit.

Cohen to give address
The Herald-Sun (Durham)
Myron Cohen, a physician and researcher who has spent the last three decades studying the transmission and prevention of HIV/AIDS, will speak at UNC Chapel Hill’s winter commencement ceremony, continuing a tradition of members of the faculty delivering the December address.  Chancellor Holden Thorp will preside at the ceremony for students who graduated in August as well as those graduating Sunday.

Study: Life Expectancy, Disability Up
Voice of America
...“Those three big, big diseases are not just going to go away,” said Mike Cohen, who heads global health research at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.  He was not involved in the studies. He says the report notes declines in HIV/AIDS deaths since 2006. Tuberculosis deaths are down nearly 20 percent as well. But the research highlights a major transition taking place worldwide, Cohen says.

UNC Health Care beginning to fulfill $40M Wake pledge
The Triangle Business Journal
With its application to add 16 inpatient psychiatric beds at WakeBrook Center in Raleigh, UNC Health Care has taken a step toward fulfilling its promise to invest $40 million in providing mental health services in Wake County. ...UNC Health Care plans an additional investment of around $10 million for new outpatient services in that area, says Dr. Jack Naftel, vice chairman of the UNC School of Medicine’s Department of Psychiatry. That’s in addition to the promised $30 million for new hospital services.

Painted cows being rounded up for auction
The Herald-Sun (Durham)
Since August, about 80 fiberglass cows -- made up in paint, mosaics and other media -- have brightened the landscape of Durham, Chapel Hill and Raleigh. This weekend, the cows in the North Carolina CowParade will be taken off display and moved to Golden Belt in preparation to be auctioned to benefit N.C. Children’s Hospital.

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