Suicide rates among America’s young people continue to soar, study shows

Suicide rates among young people have continued to soar in recent years — so much so that the rate among 15- to 24-year-olds climbed in 2017 to its highest point since 2000, new research has found. An increase was especially seen among 15- to 19-year-olds and young men, according to a research paper published Tuesday in the medical journal JAMA. The finding hits close to home for the paper’s first author, Oren Miron, a research associate at Harvard Medical School. “In high school, a friend of mine was bullied, and he unfortunately…

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Flesh-eating bacteria reveals one possible effect of climate change, study says

Climate change may lead to unlikely illnesses in unexpected places, new research suggests. In the past two years, five cases of Vibrio vulnificus, a flesh-eating bacterial infection spread by handling or eating contaminated seafood, have been tied to Delaware Bay, where water temperatures have been on the rise in recent years, according to a study. These five patients were treated at one New Jersey hospital and serve as a warning that flesh-eroding bacterial infections are now occurring outside the traditional geographic boundaries, the authors said. “It is important for physicians…

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Some high schools to test students for nicotine

FAIRBURY, Neb.  – The dramatic increase in vaping and e-cigarettes convinced Fairbury Public Schools officials they should test students for nicotine as part of the random drug tests given to students involved in extracurricular activities. “Vaping and smoking in our view is reaching epidemic proportions,” said Fairbury Superintendent Stephen Grizzle. “It’s just a way we can deter kids from potentially being addicted to nicotine. Since smoking and using vaping products are against our policies, it makes sense to include that.” Fairbury is one of a number of school districts in…

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Many breakfast cereals still contaminated by weed killer, environmental group says

Several popular breakfast foods, including Cheerios and Nature Valley products, continue to test positive for trace amounts of a controversial herbicide that may increase the risk of cancer, according to a report released Wednesday by an environmental advocacy group. The Environmental Working Group, which has links to the organics industry, found that all 21 of the products it tested had levels of glyphosate that were “higher than what EWG scientists consider protective for children’s health.” Manufacturers maintain that their foods are safe, and the findings aren’t unprecedented: The group also found in October that most…

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Connecticut girl designs Medi Teddy to reduce anxiety for pediatric patients

FAIRFIELD, Conn. – A 12-year-old girl from Fairfield is on a mission to make life a little easier for pediatric patients. Ella Casano started a GoFundMe to raise money so she could make the Medi Teddy. The Medi Teddy is a stuffed animal pouch to help conceal bags of IV medication or blood products from pediatric patients, helping them get better and feel comfortable. Ella herself has to have IVs every 8 weeks. The minimum order from the New England Toy Company is 500 units, and Ella needed to raise…

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City of Hopewell sues drug companies over opioid epidemic

HOPEWELL, Va. — The City of Hopewell has filed a lawsuit against a number of drug manufacturers, distributors, and pharmacies connected to the opioid epidemic. The lawsuit, filed Tuesday, June 11, alleges that the companies participated in “false, deceptive and unfair” marketing of prescription opioids and contributed to the opioid crisis by failing to stop suspicious orders of opioids. Virginia-based law firm Marks & Harrison is representing Hopewell in partnership with Weitz & Luxenberg in New York City. The law firm tells CBS 6 that the Hopewell lawsuit is part…

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Starting July 1, most Virginia teens won’t be allowed to buy tobacco and nicotine vapor

RICHMOND, Va. — A new law that raising the minimum age to buy tobacco, nicotine vapor, and alternative nicotine products in Virginia from 18 to 21 years old will go into effect July 1. The law however does not apply to all Virginia smokers and vapers. The new law allows active duty military aged 18 or older, with a valid military ID, to purchase nicotine products. The Virginia Alcoholic Beverage Control Authority is reminding stores to replace signs reflecting the outgoing 18 and up law. “It’s important for nicotine product…

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Maine effectively legalizes assisted suicide

Some terminally ill patients in Maine will have the legal option to pursue medically assisted suicide after Democratic Gov. Janet Mills approved a bill on Wednesday permitting it. Once the new law takes effect, Maine will join seven other states and the District of Columbia in allowing medical aid in dying. The legislation says mentally competent patients over age 18 with terminal diseases that, “within reasonable medical judgment, produce death within 6 months” can request life-ending medication. It requires those patients to make two verbal and one written request for…

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You could be swallowing a credit card’s weight in plastic every week

Globally, we are ingesting an average of 5 grams of plastic every week, the equivalent of a credit card, a new study suggests. This plastic contamination comes from “microplastics” — particles smaller than five millimeters — which are making their way into our food, drinking water and even the air. Around the world, people ingest an average of around 2,000 microplastic particles a week, according to the study by the University of Newcastle, in Australia. These tiny particles can originate from a variety of sources, including artificial clothes fibers, microbeads…

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