Global Measles Cases Down But Not Out
Measles: Since 2000 the number of measles deaths has fallen 74 percent worldwide, but that's short of the 90 percent goal, and there has been no improvement since 2007, reports Kai Kupferschmidt for Science. There is a small resurgence of the disease in the United States.
Vaccines: A study of nearly 200,000 medical records found no increased risk for serious side effects to the shingles vaccine. The most common side effect was swelling at the site of the injection, reports Nicholas Bakalar for The New York Times.
Charges: An apendectomy can generate a bill ranging from $1,500 to $180,000, and researchers say there is no rational basis for much of this variation, reports Lindsey Tanner for the Associated Press. Also, another good write up of the same study. To localize, it's possible to look up how much individual hospitals charge for various treatments - California for instance has a fairly easy-to-use database.
Insurance: Insurers are switching up their billing practices so that they can charge more for out-of-nework care, reports Nina Bernstein for the New York Times.
Medicare: By 2024 Medicare will be out of money - or it could be much sooner than that: This estimate depends on doctors taking a 31 percent pay cut, reports David Morgan for Reuters.
Photo: Julien Harnels via Flickr Creative Commons.