This Week in Health News

It is never a surprise to me when science examines old remedies and find that they are not supported by evidence- it has happened to acupuncture and now gripe water.  In the Journal Pediatrics gripe water was tested as a remedy for colic in babies. There was no evidence at all that this work. Nor have an abundance of other remedies. One in five babies get colic- so far the only remedy is time and lots of night walking.

Gripe Water - it doesn't work

On the positive side the mortality rate from cancer in the US continues to steadily decline. while over 1.5 million people will be diagnosed with cancer this year, and over 570,000 will die, it still shows that from 1990 to 2007 the death rate for cancer declined by about 20 percent. Not surprisingly, smoking rates declined also.

As smoking declines, so does cancer mortality

We all want prevention of disease, sadly we have little evidence of what can and cannot prevent disease. Still the Administration unveiled a new prevention initiative. HHS allocated an additional $4 million for prevention grants. Too often, those things cited for prevention often do not work. While we can talk about healthier living, it appears the ability to enforce that will not exist.

The best prevention of disease for most comes from clean water

Sadly, the NY Times reported that children on Medicaid are far more likely to wait longer for care from specialists. When “secret shoppers” called offices for appointments and mentioned medicaid, they found 66% were denied appointments as opposed to 11% with private insurance. “Low reimbursements” were listed as the main reason. It is sad that the most unfortunate and the most vulnerable of our society are not given a chance.

If the most vulnerable of our society cannot get help- what does that say about us?

Dr. Terry Simpson About Dr. Terry Simpson
Dr. Terry Simpson received his undergraduate and graduate degrees from the University of Chicago where he spent several years in the Kovler Viral Oncology laboratories doing genetic engineering. He found he liked people more than petri dishes, and received his MD. Dr. Simpson, then became a renowned weight loss surgeon, and a leading advocate of culinary medicine. The first surgeon to become certified in Culinary Medicine, he advocates teaching people to improve their health through their food. On the other side of the world, he has been a leading advocate of changing health care to make it more "relationship based," and his efforts awarded his team the Malcom Baldrige award for healthcare in 2011 for the NUKA system of care in Alaska. A frequent contributor to media outlets discussing health related topics and advances in medicine, he is also a proud dad, husband, author, cook, and surgeon “in that order.” For media inquiries, please visit www.terrysimpson.com.

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