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November 26, 2018 (San Diego's East County) -- Our Health and Science Highlights provide cutting edge news that could impact your health and our future.



For excerpts and links to full stories, click read more” and scroll down.


Alvarado Hospital opens new 30-bed geriatric psych unit(San Diego Union-Tribune) 

At a time when many hospitals across the nation are cutting mental heath beds, Alvarado Hospital Medical Center is expanding its offerings, recently turning a full wing at its La Mesa complex into a 30-bed behavioral health unit set up to serve patients age 65 and older.

An insurance company wants you to hand over your Fitbit data so it can make more money. Should you? (Jewish World Review) 

Life insurance company John Hancock made a splash with the news that soon all of its policies would come bundled with the option to let the company track yourfitness - via either a website and app, or through the use of a fitness tracker like an Apple Watch or Fitbit.

How can you tell whether your doctor is any good?(Jewish World Review) 

A physician at one of New York's most prominent hospitals offers insight and practical suggestions.

Veganism, vegetarianism, bone mineral density, and fracture risk (Oxford Univ. Press) 

A systematic search was conducted of….Twenty studies including 37 134 participants.... Compared with omnivores, vegetarians and vegans had lower bone mineral density at the femoral neck and lumbar spine and vegans also had higher fracture rates.

Sleep apnea patients learn insurers are using CPAP devices to surveil them (NPR) 

 Millions of sleep apnea patients rely on CPAP breathing machines to get a good night's rest. Health insurers use a variety of tactics, including surveillance, to make patients bear the costs.


Chinese Scientist Says He's First To Create Genetically Modified Babies Using CRISPR (NPR) 

He says his team performed "gene surgery" on embryos created from their parents' sperm and eggs to protect the children from the human immunodeficiency virus, HIV, which causes AIDS. The children's father is HIV-positive.

A new Venezuelan ID, created with China's ZTE, tracks citizen behavior (Reuters) 

Chinese telecoms giant ZTE is helping Venezuela build a system that monitors citizen behavior through a new identification card. The "fatherland card," already used by the government to track voting, worries many in Venezuela and beyond.

Bacteria That Absorbs CO2 Has Been Discovered at the Bottom of Pacific Ocean (Newsweek) 

Bacteria that absorbs carbon dioxide (CO2) and potentially turns itself into a food source for other sea creatures has been discovered in one of the deepest parts of the Pacific Ocean.

Unexpectedly Vanishing Quasars Are Mystifying Scientists(Wired) 

...astronomers searched through archived data and discovered 50 to 100 more of what became known as “changing-look quasars.” 

Radioactive Rocks Under Antarctica Make an Area of Ice the Size of Rhode Island Disappear (Newsweek) 

 Scientists said there might be many more of these localized hot spots than previously thought. 

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