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General Health

Genetic Testing Used As Basis For Denial Of Military Disability Benefits

"For more than 20 years, the armed forces have held a policy that specifically denies disability benefits toservicemen and women with congenital or hereditary conditions" -- a practice that "would be illegal in almost any other workplace," the Los Angeles Times reports.

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Texas To Establish State's First Needle-Exchange Program

Needle-Exchange Program

The Commissioners Court in Bexar County,Texas, on Wednesday unanimously voted to move forward with a pilot initiative that will establish the state's first needle-exchange program, the San Antonio Express-News reports (Finley, San Antonio Express-News, 8/15).

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Indian Affairs Committee Discusses Lack Of Funding For American Indian Health Care

Witnesses at a Senate Indian Affairs Committee field hearing on Wednesday in Montana said that health services for American Indians often are inadequate because of insufficient financial support from the federal government, the AP/Casper Star-Tribune reports. American Indian tribal leaders said that high mortality, chronic disease and alcoholism rates have "crippled their communities" and that a lack of funding from the federal government is a "betrayal of the treaties in which tribes gave up ancestral lands in exchange for a pledge of federal protection," according to the AP/Star-Tribune.

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Minorities Use Fewer Preventive Care Services Than Whites

Hispanics, among other ethnic and minority groups, are not utilizing preventive care to help prevent and detect conditions for early treatment, and socioeconomic reasons might not bethe underlying factor for the disparity, according to two recent studies, the Houston Chronicle reports. A study released earlier this month found that 100,000 lives could be saved annually in the U.S. if residents increased their use of preventive services.

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Internet-Based Initiatives Aim To Improve Consumer Health Care Knowledge

Microsoft this fall and Google in 2008 likely will unveil consumer-oriented health care initiatives that will combine "Internet search tools, the vast resources of the Web and online personal health records," according to people familiar with the plans, the New York Times reports. A recent Harris poll found that people increasingly are using the Internet to find health care information and advice, with 52% of adults sometimes or frequently searching the Web for health information, compared with 29% of adults in 2001.

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The story of the first totally blind doctor in America

I am blind, and I am a doctor. The fact that I am standing here before you is living proof of what we, the [blind], can achieve.... The major problem for us is not our affliction, but the wall of ignorance, injustices, indifference and misconceptions that separate us from you who can see. We must break down that wall, but we can

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