Daily Archives: 22.06.2015

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Too many babies born

About 75 women arrived at the front street entrance to Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women, to take part in a rally advocating for natural birthing. The women are concerned about the rising rate of Caesarean sections. Women like Sarah Nannen (left) and Rachel Harris (right) chose to have their children all natural.

Share PhotoAbout 75 women arrived at the front street entrance to Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women, to take part in a rally advocating for natural birthing. The women are concerned about the rising rate of Caesarean sections. Women like Sarah Nannen (left) and Rachel Harris (right) chose to have their children all natural.

Nelvin C. CepedaSan Diego The ongoing debate among health professionals about the high rate of Caesarean sections in the United States was reflected Saturday in San Diego, when about 75 natural birth advocates demonstrated outside Sharp Mary Birch Hospital for Women.

2010 C section rates at San Diego County hospitalsSharp Mary Birch Women Newborn Hospital: 42.2 percent

Scripps Memorial Hospital La Jolla: 38.5 percent

UCSD Medical Center: 35.9 percent

Pomerado Hospital: 35.6 percent

Sharp Chula Vista Medical Center: 34.4 percent

Sharp Grossmont Hospital: 33.9 percent

Kaiser Permanente Medical Center San Diego: 32.9 percent

Paradise Valley Hospital: 31.4 percent

Palomar Medical Center: 29.5
percent

Scripps Mercy Hospital: 29.7 percent

Tri City Medical Center: 28.7 percent

Fallbrook Hospital: 27.5 percent

They want patients to better understand the seriousness of the procedure
and want more restraint from obstetricians, who they say are too often opting for the major abdominal surgery instead of natural birth.

Dr. Philip Diamond, a staff physician at Sharp Mary Birch, said there
are medical reasons for the surgery, even though it can pose risks to the mother such as loss of blood, infection and damaging bowel organs.

"We do Caesarean sections because labor is not progressing normally, or the baby is showing signs of not getting enough oxygenation during labor, or there are maternal reasons like her blood pressure is very, very high, and we can’t control it safely," Diamond said.

The C section rates in the United States have climbed 53 percent since 1996, according to the National Center for Health Statistics. The rate was 21 percent in
1996. By 2010, it
was 32.8 percent, when more than 1.3 million babies were delivered by C section, according to a Nov. Department of Health and Human Services.

The increase has fueled a debate among health professionals and natural birth advocates over what the appropriate amount
is, and raised questions about why the procedure has become so much more prevalent in America. The World Health Organization recommends a C section rate of 10 to 15 percent.

Demonstrators on Saturday said speeding up the labor process should be done only if there is a serious medical need.

"We’re not against inducing labor. We’re not against C sections, but they’re only supposed to be used when absolutely necessary," said Dana Tankell, one of the protesters.

Sharp Mary Birch delivered 8,587 babies in 2010, the most of any hospital in the state, its website said.

Protesters picked the hospital for the demonstration because 42.2
percent of its deliveries last year were from C sections, the highest in the county, according to figures from the California Office of Statewide Health Planning and Development.Articles Connexes:

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Science shows no link between games and violence

Supreme Court recently heard oral arguments on a 2005 California law that bans the sale of allegedly violent video games to minors based on
the premise that violence in video games causes children to become violent. In fact, despite claims to the contrary, there is no valid or reliable scientific evidence that virtual violence causes real world violence. In order to uphold the law, the court must accept this premise. But the premise is false. Circuit Court of Appeals declared that California "has not produced substantial evidence . that violent video games cause psychological or neurological harm to minors." The court said the research presented by the state’s lead expert witness, Dr. Craig Anderson, "has readily admitted flaws that undermine" California’s case for regulating video games sales to minors.

In fact, there is a mass of compelling scholarship that challenges the linkage. One recent example is a 2009 study by professors at Texas A University that found no support "for either a causal or correlational link between violent media and subsequent aggression in viewers."

Similarly, in their 2008 book, "Grand Theft Childhood: The Surprising Truth about Video Games and What Parents Can Do," Harvard Medical School professors Lawrence Kutner and Cheryl K. Olson wrote: "The strong link between video game violence and real
world violence, and the conclusion that video games lead to social isolation and poor interpersonal skills, are drawn from bad or irrelevant research, muddle headed thinking and unfounded, simplistic news reports."

Eighty two social scientists filed a
legal brief with the Supreme Court asking that the California law be rejected. They wrote, "California’s ban on the sale and rental of violent video games to minors is based on profoundly flawed research and disregards
recent empirical evidence contradicting the harm to minors that California asserts arises from the playing of violent video games (or any other harm)."

That is the science; now
consider the logic. According to federal crime statistics compiled during the last 15 years, as video game popularity soared in this country, the rate of violent youth crime decreased dramatically exactly the opposite of what would occur if a meaningful causal
link existed.

This is not the first time lawmakers have tried to pin our societal problems on new forms of entertainment media. Movies, comic books and rock and roll all served as past scapegoats for complex social issues. It is tempting to do so, but allowing false assumptions to serve as the basis for
public policy or constitutional law is not healthy for a democratic society.

In this case, the state is using these flawed assumptions that would potentially burden law enforcement with "culture police" responsibilities. If upheld, this law would ultimately do nothing to reduce actual rates of violence in the United States. Victims of violence deserve laws and policies that address the real causes, like substance abuse, family violence and neighborhood instability. Focusing on video games is a
political red herring.Articles Connexes:

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Shriners may close 6 hospitals

Shriners Hospitals, which has provided free care to children since before the Great Depression, is considering closing a quarter of its facilities as donations stagnate, costs increase and the charity’s endowment shrivels.

The
group’s director says it’s the only viable option. Meanwhile, they say, that fund has fallen to $5 billion from $8 billion in less than a year because of the sputtering stock market and a charitable giving slump that has hurt philanthropies nationwide. The fund has been declining since 2001. The group will vote this summer on the closures.

"Unless we do something, the clock is ticking and within five to seven years we’ll probably be out of the hospital
business and not have any hospitals," Ralph Semb, chief executive officer of Shriners Hospitals for Children, told The Associated Press.

In cities where hospitals may close, supporters and hospital staff are scheduling fundraisers and posting online messages of support on social networking Web sites.

"I’ve collected $92 dollars in two days," said Brooklynn Myers, 14, who received scoliosis treatment at the Shriners’ Greenville hospital. "Me and my mom feel like it’s heartbreaking. We’d have to drive all the way to Lexington (Kentucky), and we’ve made special bonds here."

Widely known today for burn and orthopedic care for children, the Shriners Hospitals system opened in 1922 with a facility in Shreveport, La., that specialized in treating polio. By the 1960s, the group had hospitals nationwide and expanded its care to include spinal cord injury rehabilitation, cleft lip and palate care and medical research.

More than 1 million children have been treated at the hospitals, which were created by the fraternal organization of the same name whose members are known for wearing red fezzes and driving miniature
cars in parades. The care is free to all.

In 2007, the fraternal group was hit with accusations it used money intended for the hospitals to throw parties but only a fraction of the hospitals’ funds are raised by the group. Most of the money to operate the hospitals has come from interest from the endowment, Semb said.

Semb said this year’s operating budget for the hospital system is $856 million. The budget has risen by $100 million each of the past two years while donation levels remained static, he said.

Last month, the Shriners’ board of trustees voted to close four of the group’s eight research centers and lay off about 40 people at its administrative office.

At the organization’s annual meeting July 6 8 in San Antonio, about 1,200 Shriners will vote whether to close hospitals in Shreveport, La.; Erie, Pa.; Spokane, Wash.; Springfield, Mass., and Greenville. Semb said they were chosen mainly because of too
many vacant beds. Patients would be sent to other Shriners hospitals that specialize in their ailments.

The organization also will consider whether a hospital in Galveston, Texas closed temporarily after damage from Hurricane Ike will remain shuttered.

"The outlook is not good, but we know that we can right it," Semb said. "And we can within a five year period of time get our expenses down far enough to equal the income we have coming in and hopefully start building on that
endowment fund."

Fewer large donations

Closing these hospitals is the only viable option, Semb said. While members will also consider keeping all 22 facilities open or a nationwide 30 percent budget cut Semb contends doing either would be a death knell to the organization. He said to continue functioning as they do now with all the hospitals open, Shriners would have to grow the endowment to about $12 billion by 2014 unlikely, given the economy and nationwide trend toward less large sum charitable giving.

Fewer groups and individuals gave gifts
of more than $1 million in 2007 compared to 2008, and such donations fell even more in the final two quarters of last year, according to preliminary findings of a study due out this summer from The Center on Philanthropy at Indiana University. Even when giving was more robust from 1991 to 2005 gifts to health care groups grew
at a much slower rate than those for other entities, like universities, said Melissa Brown,
associate director of research for the center.

She said the aging of once prominent fraternal organizations might be affecting their ability to grow donations. "It could be that what they are seeing is a generational shift," Brown said.

Getting the two thirds majority needed to close the hospitals will not be easy, Semb said.

Patients and their families are vowing to rally at the annual meeting. And some Shriners who have spent years raising money and volunteering say they’ll oppose the move. They’ve done it before: A plan to close hospitals in 2003 was quickly voted down despite warnings of financial problems.

In Greenville, letters of support from patients cover the wall of one hallway at the 50 bed hospital.

Jason Burbage, who was born with no fingers, has been going to Shriners Hospitals since he was born in 1976 first as a patient and now as a volunteer to give encouragement to patients. The work has become more difficult because of the financial troubles, he said.Articles Connexes:

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El Nino likely late this year

There’s a 75 percent chance that an El Nino will develop late this year, improving the prospects that Southern California will pull out of a deep drought, scientists say in a paper published Monday in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences.The forecast was made by an international team of scientists who said they’ve developed a model that enables them to make such a prediction about one year in advance, rather than the 5 to 6 months that is common for spotting an El Nino, a natural periodic climate change that can
strengthen Pacific storms.The
team, led by researchers at the University of Giessen in Germany, also say the algorithm enabled them to correctly predict that an El Nino would not occur in 2012 and 2013.An El Nino can develop when westbound winds in the Pacific slacken at and near the equator, allowing unusually warm water to flow east, where it triggers atmospheric changes that can increase the strength and frequency of the winter storms that flow into Southern California. El Ninos vary in length and intensity. A reverse pattern, known as La Nina, can cause extended periods of dry weather. Southern California is currently in a neutral phase.Forecasters have struggled to accurately forecast El Nino. It isn’t clear that things have changed with the new prediction. Conditions have been changing rapidly; as the new science paper notes, researchers said last September that there was a 1 in 5 chance that an El Nino would develop. The odds changed to 1
in 3 by November. Southern California experienced a moderate El Nino in 2009 2010, and an historic one
in 1997 98. The latter event produced floods and mudslides across Southern California."We are aware of the reputational risks associated with our announcement, yet formulating falsifiable hypotheses is at the heart of the scientific method," the
science team says in the PNAS paper. "Should our alarm turn out to be correct, however, this would be a major step toward better forecasting and eventually understanding of the (El Nino) dynamics."Our contribution may also be relevant for the wider debate about anthropogenic global warming. There have been speculations that the
recent hiatus in planetary mean surface temperature rise indicates that the climate system is less CO2 sensitive than previously thought. On the other hand, new studies have demonstrated
that decadal atmospheric warming is considerably masked by equatorial Pacific variability."The U T’s Rob Krier reports that the Climate Prediction Center said last week that the odds of an El Nino developing later this year appear to be increasing. But climatologists at the center say there is low confidence
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industry for more than a decade, where he was involved in the
discovery and development of drugs for various infectious diseases. Jessica K. HolienJessica K. Holien is a research officer in the Structural Biology Laboratory and the Australian Cancer Research Foundation (ACRF) Rational Drug Discovery Centre at St
Vincent Institute of Medical Research in
Fitzroy, Victoria, Australia. She currently works on various molecular modelling projects with a strong focus on cancer, infection and neurological diseases. in 2010 in the Department of Medicinal Chemistry, Monash University, Parkville, Victoria, Australia, using
multi faceted structure based drug design techniques, including molecular
modelling, chemical synthesis and biological assays. She has recently been awarded a joint Cure Cancer/Leukaemia Foundation postdoctoral fellowship. Jerome WielensJerome Wielens has been a medical researcher for more than 8 years, specializing
in the development of new compounds
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and Succession Planning firms still do not have successful talent management or succession
planning programs. Indeed, the current economic downturn may in fact create an additional hardship for employers, since it may tempt many managers to take their human talent for granted as unemployment rises. In short,
the word (that is, may lull some managers into false sense of security as many workers delay their retirements or hunker down to accept extra work
at a time when finding new jobs may not be as easy as in boom times. Executive coaching has emerged in recent years as a topic of great interest for several reasons, and employers should be cognizant of what those reasons are. But what is
executive coaching? What categories of executive coaching may exist? When is executive coaching appropriate? How does executive coaching relate to talent management? How should executive coaching be carried out? Who should carry it out? This brief article addresses these questions. Executive coaching is a process of helping an executive become more effective in his or her job. While almost anyone who helps an executive become more effective serves
as an
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Asia Bioenergy to diversify into O KUALA LUMPUR: Asia Bioenergy Technologies Bhd (AsiaBio) is seeking to venture into the oil and gas (O transportation industry through the proposed acquisition of two shipping companies
for downstream activities. The company is an investment holdings company that operates as a technology incubator, particularly in the bioenergy sector. AsiaBio on Tuesday entered into a Heads of Agreement (HOA) with Hoe Leong Corporation Ltd (HLCL) from Singapore and Reachmont Logistics Sdn Bhd (RLSB) to facilitate the
acquisition of Semua Shipping Sdn Bhd (SSSB) and Semado Maritime Sdn Bhd (SMSB). Speaking to reporters after the signing ceremony, AsiaBio’s Non Independent Executive Director Steve Tan Sik Eek said the HOA would provide an avenue to expand into downstream O and G activities. The HOA
indicates that the definitive agreement for the transaction is subject to regulatory approvals and has an exclusivity period of three months. Tan said through the HOA, the shares in SSSB and SMSB will be transferred to a Special Purpose Vehicle (SPV) collectively held by HLCL, Ebony Ritz Sdn Bhd and RLSB, and would eventually be acquired by AsiaBio via shares swap worth around RM16mil. This will in turn make the SPV a 25% stakeholder in AsiaBio. He said the SPV would provide a profit after tax (PAT) guarantee of RM8mil for the financial year ended Dec 31, 2014 and is expected to
contribute RM14mil for financial ended
2015. For any profit shortfall in 2015, shareholders would have to pay AsiaBio an amount proportionate to their existing stake holding, he added. Tan said with the diversification, he expects the balance sheet of Asia Bio to improve and the move is part of its long term investment strategy. AsiaBio
registered a
widened cumulative loss for the first nine months of financial year 2014 at RM1.28mil from the RM710,000 recorded in the financial year ended Jan
31, 2013. "When we were involved in renewable energy and incubation companies, there was a lack of immediate returns for shareholders. They can now expect a more immediate return and also capitalise on the SPV’s growth potential," said Tan. He was also of the view that the proposed acquisition is poised to benefit from falling oil prices as it constitutes 30% of transportation costs. BernamaArticles Connexes:

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and collaborative. Local: In local mode apps are stored and run directly
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Display mode (HUD)
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Not Sure You Can Pass a Background Check Would you believe me if I told you that NASA’s premier robotic exploration lab is legally barred from conducting background checks on employees? Well, believe it. Whoever even heard of getting a
job these days without passing a background check? That goes for just about any job, let alone a job at a top secret NASA research lab!
Apparently, 28 scientists and engineers from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory had gotten together and sued NASA for invading their privacy. What happened is
federal investigators checked out their personal information when renewing their badges. Duuudes, I mean . You
are working for NASA! Why is that surprising? Didn’t they have to pass a background check as a hiring prerequisite? It’s like straight out of the twilight zone! Oh, but it gets better. The 9th U. S. Circuit Court of Appeals had concluded that NASA should be prohibited from conducting background
checks, because it violates its employees’ constitutional rights! And now a federal appeals court in Los Angeles, CA has refused to hear another appeal
from NASA. What on Earth is going on here? Since when is it
an imposition, to expect every employee of such top secret employer to undergo a background check? Perhaps routine background checks are a relatively new thing to us mere mortals, but if you are a NASA caliber physicist, you are a primary espionage target and therefore suspect, and that is nothing new, and really a given in most of our minds. What’s even more mind boggling is that the court would see it this way and prohibit NASA from conducting background checks! Well, it seems if you doubt you can pass a background check, you should go work for NASA.Articles Connexes:

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village adoption scheme endorsed cutting across party lines

Even before Congress President Sonia Gandhi and vice president Rahul Gandhi endorsed one of prime minister Narendra Modi pet schemes, more than half the Congress MPs had already adopted villages in their constituencies.

Of the 545 Lok Sabha MPs, 344 members have conveyed to the government the name of the village adopted under the Saansad Adarsh Gram Yojna, as per the last updated list
available with the ministry of rural development.
From among the 241 Rajya Sabha MPs, 86 have adopted villages so far.

That the scheme, under which MPs have been requested to develop one model village in their constituency by 2016 and two more by 2019, has been accepted cutting across the political aisle was apparent from the fact that members of Opposition parties including more than 50 per cent of the 44 Congress MPs in Lok Sabha have also chosen villages till now.

However, with several of the MPs, including those of the BJP, not meeting the earlier deadline of November 11, the government has given another week time. Sonia and Rahul Gandhi have adopted villages in their constituencies of Amethi and Rae
Bareli in UP though their names were yet to figure on the list. Sources said updating of the list was an ongoing process as MPs were still sending in their proposals to the ministry. Modi, also an MP
from Uttar Pradesh, has adopted Jayapur village in his Varanasi constituency. In UP, where the BJP had won 72 of the 80 seats, 61 members, have so far adopted villages, including SP Dimple Yadav.

Besides Modi home state, Gujarat, Kerala, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh have
already recorded a 100 per cent response to the scheme, followed by Rajasthan, where 24 of the 25 BJP members have selected
villages. In Madhya Pradesh, 23 of the 27 MPs, including external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj, speaker Sumitra Mahajan and Congress leader Jyotiraditya Scindia, have adopted villages. Maharashtra also tops the charts with 44 of its 48 Lok Sabha MPs, including union minister Nitin Gadkari who had held the rural development portfolio earlier and NCP Supriya Sule, sending their proposals to the ministry. In Bihar, where 35 of the 40 Lok Sabha MPs including three of RJD, one of the two JD U MPs and all six LJP members have adopted villages so far.

Two of the BJP
former allies Mamata Banerjee Trinamool Congress and Jayalalithaa AIADMK most indifferent to the scheme. Only one of the 34 TMC MPs figured in the list while from Tamil Nadu, of the 38 AIADMK MPs only nine had joined the scheme as per information when the list was last updated. It also showed that no MP had forwarded proposals from urban Delhi and Chandigarh or from the notheastern states of Meghalaya, Nagaland and Mizoram.

In Jharkhand, which is heading for elections, only three BJP and one JMM of the 14 MPs have sent their proposals. In poll bound Jammu and Kashmir, two MPs union minister Jitendra Singh and BJP Ladakh MP Thupstan Chhewang have adopted villages. Of the 25 MPs in Andhra Pradesh, only five members of
TDP including union minister Ashok Gajapathi Raju and two of YSR Congress have so far adopted villages.Articles Connexes:

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