Don’t Get Tricked By Too Many Treats!

Not only is Halloween candy lining drugstore aisles, but it seems to have taken residence at the workplace (those pesky candy dishes!), supermarket shelves and even the doctor’s office. The holiday of ghouls and goblins not only brings plenty of tricks and scary costumes, but it signifies the start to a holiday season filled with treats. Healthy habits you’ve worked so hard to instill can fall by the wayside as Halloween candy transitions to pecan pie, Christmas cookies and fruitcakes. The good news is that we’re here to help you navigate the holidays and help you maintain a healthy balance. First up: Halloween!

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Homemade, Health-Promoting Nut Milk (Recipe Included!)

Breast Cancer Awareness Month comes to us in October, a time when the cooling weather and change in seasonal produce lead us to reach for our favorite fall comfort foods. Spiced ciders, doughnuts, and pumpkin everything are a few of the season’s best indulgences, but as indulgences they should remain, or we’ll find ourselves entering the holidays with bloated stomachs and ill-fitting clothes.

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Eye Safety Tips Over Labor Day Weekend

In the U.S., more than 9,000 fireworks injuries happen each year, with roughly 1 in 8 fireworks injuries harming the eyes. With Labor Day weekend celebrations approaching, Dr. Ronald C. Gentile, Professor of Ophthalmology and the Chief of Ocular Trauma Service at New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai, wants to remind people of some eye health and fireworks safety tips.

“Common fireworks and sparkler eye injuries include burns, lacerations, abrasions, retinal detachment, optic nerve damage and ruptured eyeball,” says Dr. Gentile. “And children are frequent victims of these injuries. As many as 30 percent of eye traumas caused by fireworks impact kids.”

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“Nurse Practitioners Are Worthy Professionals … but They Are Not Doctors.”

The New York Times op-ed noted “EARLIER this month, the New York State Legislature passed a bill granting nurse practitioners the right to provide primary care without physician oversight. New York joins 16 other states and the District of Columbia in awarding such autonomy. (Most states still require nurse practitioners to work with physicians under a written practice agreement.) The bill’s authors contend that mandatory collaboration with a physician “no longer serves a clinical purpose” and reduces much-needed access to primary care.”

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Beware of Shifting Options within Medicare Plans

The New York Times reported: “The Medicare open enrollment season, which runs from Oct. 15 through Dec. 7, gives individuals a chance to rethink it all and reassess whether their plan still fits their needs.”

“Elizabeth Cooper, a 68-year-old former elementary schoolteacher, weighs her options each year. She has already tried a couple of plans, including one through Medicare Advantage, which lured her in because it had no monthly premium. But the plan required her to shoulder a significant share of her medical costs.”

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How Hospitals Should Prepare For A Potential Ebola Patient

The Huffington Post reported “Back in August, it only took Mount Sinai Hospital workers in New York seven minutes to isolate and start treating a man who they suspected of having Ebola. Other U.S. hospitals have also speedily screened and tested suspected Ebola patients, all without incident.

The contrast between those other hospitals’ responses and the actions of workers at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Dallas, who recently mistook a Liberian man’s symptoms for a common illness and didn’t properly communicate his travel history to other colleagues, can be explained with training and drills, explained Dr. Brian Koll, the executive director of infection prevention for Mount Sinai Health System.

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New Research Refutes Long-Held Antiviral Theory

A long-standing belief that mammals use the same potent antiviral molecules deployed by plants and invertebrates is being challenged by researchers at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai.

Their findings, published in the July 10, 2014, issue of Cell Reports, surprised many scientists who assumed that antiviral RNA Interference (RNAi) exists in humans as a natural result of evolution.

Scientists know that human cells, like cells in every living organism with a nucleus, encode and generate small RNAs, which influence our genetics. It is also known that mammals combat viruses with interferons—proteins manufactured by immune cells in response to pathogens.

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Chronic Disease Management Is Not “Free” Under Obamacare

Here’s a Q&A from Kaiser Health News:

“Q. My doctor added on a charge for a “chronic disease management” appointment on top of my annual physical because I have thyroid disease and arthritis. The doctor’s office explained that my visit was more complicated than a routine physical. I’m not sure I buy that. In my case, it only cost a $20 copay, but I was surprised that it was billed that way, and it could be a surprise for someone without the excellent coverage that I have. Can they do that? ”

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“Consumers Expecting Free ‘Preventive’ Care Sometimes Surprised By Charges”

The Kaiser Health News reported “The new health-care law encourages people to get the preventive services they need by requiring that most health plans cover cancer screenings, contraceptives and vaccines, among other things, without charging patients anything out of pocket. Some patients, however, are running up against coverage exceptions and extra costs when they try to get those services.

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