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links for 2011-07-01

  • Quote:"Experts behind the report say the move could reduce deaths in hospital by up to 60,000 a year by 2021, translating into savings of £180 million annually.

    At the moment, the amount primary care trusts (PCTs) in England spend on end-of-life care varies widely, from £186 per patient in one area to £6,213 in another.

    Access to services, including round-the-clock nursing care, also depends on where people live.

    Far more people die in hospital than wish to, and experts estimate that more than 90,000 people are not having their palliative care needs met. "

    // You can't escape it, healthcare is always going to be rationed because there is a limited supply. There's no way NHS can do everything.

  • Quote:"
    The Kaukauna School District, in the Fox River Valley of Wisconsin near Appleton, has about 4,200 students and about 400 employees. It has struggled in recent times and this year faced a deficit of $400,000. But after the law went into effect, at 12:01 a.m. Wednesday, school officials put in place new policies they estimate will turn that $400,000 deficit into a $1.5 million surplus. And it's all because of the very provisions that union leaders predicted would be disastrous.

    In the past, teachers and other staff at Kaukauna were required to pay 10 percent of the cost of their health insurance coverage and none of their pension costs. Now, they'll pay 12.6 percent of the cost of their coverage (still well below rates in much of the private sector) and also contribute 5.8 percent of salary to their pensions. The changes will save the school board an estimated $1.2 million this year, according to board President Todd Arnoldussen.

    // Duh. Read the whole thing.

  • Quote:"According to a new study, the biggest single contributor to the sharp rise in calorie intake has been the number of snacks and meals people eat per day. Over the past 30-odd years, the study found, Americans have gone from consuming 3.8 snacks and meals per day to 4.9, on average—a 29 percent increase.

    The average portion size has increased, too, but only by about 12 percent. And, surprisingly, the average number of calories per 1-gram serving of food (known as "energy density") actually declined slightly over that period, which suggests that calorie-rich food has played a relatively minor role in our expanding waistlines.

    "The real reason we seem to be eating more [calories] is we're eating often," says the lead author of the study, Barry Popkin, Ph.D., a professor of nutrition at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

    // That's goog to know.

  • Quote:"The U.S. government has sued a former NASA astronaut to recover a camera used to explore the moon's surface during the 1971 Apollo 14 mission after seeing it slated for sale in a New York auction.

    The lawsuit, filed in Miami federal court on Wednesday, accuses Edgar Mitchell of illegally possessing the camera and attempting to sell it for profit.

    In March, NASA learned that the British auction house Bonhams was planning to sell the camera at an upcoming Space History Sale, according to the suit.

    The item was labeled "Movie Camera from the Lunar Surface" and billed as one of two cameras from the Apollo 14's lunar module Antares. The lot description said the item came "directly from the collection" of pilot Edgar Mitchell and had a pre-sale estimate of $60,000 to $80,000, the suit said.

    // The government is such a buzzkill. They had forty years to track down this lunar equipment, and only now they care? What are the odds they didn't know he had the camera? Next to 0.

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