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Health News Stories
Excerpts of Key Health News Stories in Major Media


Below are highly revealing excerpts of important health news stories reported in the media that suggest a major cover-up. Links are provided to the full stories on their major media websites. If any link fails to function, read this webpage. These health news stories are listed by date posted to this webpage. You can explore the same articles listed by order of importance or by article date. By choosing to educate ourselves on these important issues and to spread the word, we can and will build a brighter future.

Note: This comprehensive list of health news stories is usually updated once a week. Explore our full index to revealing excerpts of key major media news stories on several dozen engaging topics. And don't miss amazing excerpts from 20 of the most revealing news articles ever published.


Rattled by drug price increases, hospitals seek ways to stay on guard
2016-03-13, Washington Post
Posted: 2016-03-20 22:24:39
https://www.washingtonpost.com/national/health-science/rattled-by-drug-price-...

Doctors at the University Hospitals of Cleveland see an immediately recognizable symbol pop up alongside certain drugs when they sign in online these days to prescribe medications for patients: $$$$$. The dollar signs, affixed by hospital administrators, carry a not-so-subtle message: Think twice before using this drug. Pick an alternative if possible. The ... approach is just one of the strategies hospitals nationwide are using to try to counter drug costs. The increases often involved brand-name drugs with little or no competition as well as commonly used generics around for decades. Among those tagged were Nitropress and Isuprel, injectable heart medications that are a staple at many hospitals. Their 2015 list prices rose more than 200 percent and 500 percent, respectively. Hospital officials around the United States point to similar experiences, saying their predicament illustrates one dimension of a broken prescription-drug system. A recent Bloomberg Business survey of about 3,000 brand-name prescription drugs found that prices had more than doubled for 60 medications since December 2014 and at least quadrupled for 20. Prices for many other drugs continued to rise at 10 percent or more annually. “The patient doesn’t initially see the price increase,” said Scott Knoer, chief pharmacy officer at the Cleveland Clinic. “But it raises the cost for the hospital. Eventually, it catches up and it raises the cost for insurance companies, which is passed on to employers, employees and taxpayers.”

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing big Pharma profiteering news articles from reliable major media sources.


EU states rebel against plans to relicense weedkiller glyphosate
2016-03-04, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2016-03-14 19:36:30
http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2016/mar/04/eu-states-rebel-against-pl...

Several EU countries could scupper plans by the European commission to approve the relicensing of a weedkiller linked to cancer. The vote to relicense glyphosate, a key ingredient in herbicides such as Monsanto’s multibillion-dollar brand Roundup, had been scheduled at a two-day meeting of experts from the EU’s 28 member states, which begins on Monday. But officials are now saying that they may postpone the vote rather than lose it, raising the prospect of a legal limbo for glyphosate, the licence for which runs out in June. France, the Netherlands and Sweden have all said they will not support an assessment by the European food safety authority (Efsa) that glyphosate is harmless. That ruling ran counter to findings by the WHO’s cancer agency that glyphosate was “probably carcinogenic to humans, causing a bitter row over scientific methodology and industry influence. The Swedish environment minister, Ĺsa Romson, said: “We won’t take risks with glyphosate and we don’t think that the analysis done so far is good enough. We will propose that no decision is taken until further analysis has been done and the Efsa scientists have been more transparent about their considerations.” An Efsa panel based its recommendation that glyphosate was safe ... on six industry-funded studies that have not been fully published. Glyphosate use has been banned or restricted in large parts of Europe because of alleged links to a host of health problems, ranging from birth defects and kidney failure to coeliac disease, colitis and autism.

Note: The overlap between the GMO industry and European regulators has become increasingly controversial. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.


Patients Legally Take Ecstasy While Receiving Therapy In Marin County
2016-02-26, KPIX TV (CBS San Francisco affiliate)
Posted: 2016-03-14 19:16:32
http://sanfrancisco.cbslocal.com/2016/02/26/patients-legally-take-ecstasy-whi...

Decades after the U.S. Federal Government banned the drug ecstasy — which in turn went underground, gaining notoriety as a party drug — a Bay Area medical team got special permission to study its therapeutic use. The goal of the trial is to see whether a pure dose of the compound MDMA, also known as ecstasy, can be pure medicine: could it ease the crippling anxiety, fear, or depression felt by those suffering from a life-threatening disease? The lead investigator for this study is psychiatrist Phil Wolfson. The medical doctor has permission from the U.S. FDA to conduct the study, and legally administer the drug. “The FDA approved so the DEA had to follow suit,” explained Wolfson. Before the DEA declared MDMA illegal in 1985, Doctor Wolfson used it medicinally in his own practice and saw a tremendous benefit for patients. In the study, MDMA is not used alone. The use of the compound is combined with psychotherapy sessions that can last five hours or longer. “It’s not this 50 minutes in and out, it’s these extended periods of real interactive exchange, “ explained [study participant Andy] Gold. “With the MDMA, everything opened up,” recalled [study participant Wendy] Donner. “You start seeing things very, very clearly and at a nice slow pace, truths in your life are bubbling up. And revealed to you piece by piece,” explained [study participant John] Saul. The participants all say they’ve changed and are better able to face the future. Wolfson hopes the drug may one day be available to other patients as a legally accepted remedy.

Note: While the war on drugs has been called a "trillion dollar failure", the healing potentials of mind altering drugs are starting to be investigated more openly.


GlaxoSmithKline fined $3bn after bribing doctors to increase drugs sales
2012-07-03, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2016-03-14 19:14:18
http://www.theguardian.com/business/2012/jul/03/glaxosmithkline-fined-bribing...

The pharmaceutical group GlaxoSmithKline has been fined $3bn (Ł1.9bn) after admitting bribing doctors and encouraging the prescription of unsuitable antidepressants to children. The company encouraged sales reps in the US to mis-sell three drugs to doctors and lavished hospitality and kickbacks on those who agreed to write extra prescriptions. The company admitted corporate misconduct over the antidepressants Paxil and Wellbutrin and asthma drug Advair. GSK also paid for articles on its drugs to appear in medical journals and "independent" doctors were hired by the company to promote the treatments. Paxil – which was only approved for adults – was promoted as suitable for children and teenagers by the company despite trials that showed it was ineffective. Children and teenagers are only treated with antidepressants in exceptional circumstances due to an increased risk of suicide. The second drug to be mis-sold was Wellbutrin – another antidepressant aimed only at adults. The prosecution said the company paid $275,000 to Dr Drew Pinsky, who hosted a popular radio show, to promote the drug on his programme, in particular for unapproved uses. US attorney Carmin Ortiz said: "The sales force bribed physicians to prescribe GSK products using every imaginable form of high-priced entertainment, from Hawaiian vacations [and] paying doctors millions of dollars to go on speaking tours, to tickets to Madonna concerts." Despite the large fine, $3bn is far less than the profits made from the drugs.

Note: In February 2016, GlaxoSmithKline was fined another $53 million by the UK for preventing generic competition. The list of huge fines to top drug companies includes five fines of over $1 billion and dozens over $100 million. How can we trust these companies on the safety and reliability of their products?


GlaxoSmithKline fined $490m by China for bribery
2014-02-19, BBC
Posted: 2016-03-14 19:12:34
http://www.bbc.com/news/business-29274822

China has fined UK pharmaceuticals firm GlaxoSmithKline $490m (Ł297m) after a court found it guilty of bribery. The record penalty follows allegations the drug giant paid out bribes to doctors and hospitals in order to have their products promoted. The court gave GSK's former head of Chinese operations, Mark Reilly, a suspended three-year prison sentence and he is set to be deported. Other GSK executives have also been given suspended jail sentences. The guilty verdict was delivered after a one-day trial at a court in Changsha, according to the Xinhua news agency. Chinese authorities first announced they were investigating GSK in July last year, in what has become the biggest corruption scandal to hit a foreign firm in years. The company was accused of having made an estimated $150m in illegal profits. GSK said it had "published a statement of apology to the Chinese government and its people". This is a humiliating outcome for one of Britain's biggest companies: pleading guilty to systematic bribery, facing the biggest fine in Chinese history and making an abject apology to the Chinese government and people.

Note: In February 2016, GlaxoSmithKline was fined another $53 million by the UK for preventing generic competition. The list of huge fines to top drug companies includes five fines of over $1 billion and dozens over $100 million. How can we trust these companies on the safety and reliability of their products?


Are You a Toxic Waste Disposal Site?
2016-02-13, New York Times
Posted: 2016-03-07 13:36:42
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/14/opinion/sunday/are-you-a-toxic-waste-dispos...

Scientists have identified more than 200 industrial chemicals - from pesticides, flame retardants, jet fuel - as well as neurotoxins like lead in the blood or breast milk of Americans, indeed, in people all over our planet. These have been linked to cancer, genital deformities, lower sperm count, obesity and diminished I.Q.. Medical organizations ... have demanded tougher regulations or warned people to avoid them. They have all been drowned out. Chemical companies, by spending vast sums on lobbying - $100,000 per member of Congress last year - block serious oversight. Almost none of the chemicals in products we use daily have been tested for safety. “Industrial chemicals that injure the developing brain” have been linked to conditions like autism and attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, noted The Lancet Neurology, a peer-reviewed medical journal. Yet we still don’t have a clear enough sense of what is safe, because many industrial chemicals aren’t safety tested before they are put on the market. Meanwhile, Congress has dragged out efforts to strengthen the Toxic Substances Control Act and test more chemicals for safety. The President’s Cancer Panel recommended that people eat organic if possible, filter water and avoid microwaving food in plastic containers. All good advice, but that’s like telling people to avoid cholera without providing clean water. And that’s why we need another public health revolution in the 21st century.

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles about corruption in government and in the corporate world. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Health Information Center.


Drug Distribution Becomes Weapon to Block Competition
2016-03-03, ABC/Associated Press
Posted: 2016-03-07 13:34:17
http://abcnews.go.com/Business/wireStory/drug-distribution-weapon-block-compe...

The same strategy that Martin Shkreli used to get away with a 5,000-percent price increase on an old drug is used by many other drugmakers. Before the price hike that made him infamous, the former CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals had to ensure that no competitor would be able to launch a cheaper version of Daraprim, the 60-year-old anti-infection pill that is no longer under patent. Shkreli had the perfect weapon: a tightly-controlled distribution system which would make it virtually impossible for a competitor to obtain enough Daraprim to develop their own version. Many larger drugmakers have also turned drug distribution into a powerful tool against competition. The strategy takes advantage of a simple fact: If generic drugmakers can't get their hands on the original product, they cannot perform the tests needed to develop a generic version. When the original drugmaker controls the drug's distribution, they can simply refuse to sell. The effect on patients is higher prices for drugs. At least 40 drugs worth an estimated $5.4 billion are sheltered from competition by distribution hurdles, according to a study commissioned by the Generic Pharmaceutical Association, an industry trade group. The Food and Drug Administration is aware of the misuse of distribution programs. The agency does not penalize companies for the practice.

Note: For more excellent information on drug prices hikes, read this penetrating article in the Daily Beast. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing big Pharma profiteering news articles from reliable major media sources.


Pharmaceutical companies cause doctors to receive biased information about drugs ‘costing hundreds of thousands of lives’
2016-02-24, The Independent (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2016-02-28 20:35:55
http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/home-news/pharmaceutical-companies-cause...

Dr Aseem Malhotra, an NHS cardiologist and a trustee of the King’s Fund health think tank, claims there is “a systemic lack of transparency in the information being given to doctors to prescribe medication, in terms of the benefits of drugs being grossly exaggerated and their side effects under reported in studies”. Dr Malhotra said the prevalence of pharmaceutical companies, which are “profit making businesses” being able to fund studies and drug trials causes biased information to be recorded and reported on in medical journals. This is in turn “creating an epidemic of misinformed doctors,” he said. This lack of transparency ... harms patients through the adverse side effects of drugs, Dr Malhotra said, citing an FDA report that found adverse events from prescribed medications caused 123,000 deaths in the USA in 2014 and 800,000 serious patient outcomes, which include hospitalisation or potentially causing disability. The FDA report also states that the number of adverse events from prescribed medications have tripled in the past 10 years in America. While the UK does not have the same kind of data, Peter Gotze, professor of research design at the University of Copenhagen, has evidence to suggest that prescribed drugs are the third biggest killer behind heart disease and cancer. Last year the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges launched a campaign to stop doctors from ‘over-treating’ patients.

Note: The editor of The Lancet, one of the most prestigious medical journals in the world, recently wrote that half of all claims made in medical science journals may be untrue. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing big Pharma profiteering news articles from reliable major media sources.


To Make Health Care for All a Reality, Stop Killing People
2016-02-19, TruthOut.org
Posted: 2016-02-28 20:24:14
http://www.truth-out.org/opinion/item/34904-to-make-health-care-for-all-a-rea...

Real health care for all would be nice, we are told, but there's just no room for it in the budget. What's rarely mentioned ... is that the current version of the budget - the place where our taxes go and metamorphose into services and activities that are supposed to support us - is extremely bad for our health. Much of our tax money, on both the federal and state levels, is funneled toward activities that are literally killing people. Instead of dismissing "health care for all" as an appealing-but-unachievable dream, we need to talk about how we can shift our overall funding priorities from a framework of death and destruction to one of life and healing. In mid-February, the Obama administration released its 2017 budget proposal, in which almost $623 billion is allocated to the Pentagon and related spending. The "global war on terror" has left 1.3 million dead. Beyond Pentagon funding, the administration's 2017 budget calls for $19 billion for nuclear weapons. In fact, President Obama recently proposed [expanding] the US's [nuclear] arsenal, spending $1 trillion over 30 years. This prioritization of state-sponsored death and destruction over health and renewal is by no means limited to the US Defense Department. Each year, in total ... the United States spends about $80 billion on incarceration. This country locks 2.3 million people ... inside cages. In part, real "health care" would necessitate dismantling [our] violent institutions.

Note: Read an excellent article diving deeper into this issue titled "Why the Deafening Silence on Cutting the Military Budget?" For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing government corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Possible Alzheimer’s drug cut mice aging symptoms
2015-11-12, San Diego Union-Tribune (San Diego's leading newspaper)
Posted: 2016-02-28 20:22:05
http://www.sandiegouniontribune.com/news/2015/nov/12/alzheimer-j147-mice-brains/

A potential anti-Alzheimer’s drug tested in mice unexpectedly reduced general symptoms of aging, according to a study led by Salk Institute researchers. The study examined the effects of the drug, J147, in a strain of mice bred to rapidly age and show signs of senescence. It is the second mouse model to show effectiveness. Besides improved cognition compared to controls, the treated mice exhibited better metabolism, reduced blood leakage from microvessels in the brain, and other improvements. Researchers ... published the study Wednesday in the journal Aging. Abrexa Pharmaceuticals, a San Diego company formed to commercialize J147, has licensed the compound from Salk. The drug is to be tested for Alzheimer's, not for anti-aging properties. Derived from a spice in curry, [J147] was developed ... based on the observation that people in India, where curry is widely consumed, rarely get Alzheimer's. The potential drug has been previously tested in Alzheimer's model mice. It was found to have memory-enhancing effects. The new study, showing effectiveness in another strain of mice, lends further credence to J147's usefulness.

Note: For more on J147 see this article in U.S. News & World Report (particularly the video at the bottom of the page) or do a search on J177. Some are claiming that big Pharma won't study this promising drug as it won't make big enough profits for them.


Why Did Top Scientific Journals Reject This Dr. Bronner's Ad?
2014-10-20, Mother Jones
Posted: 2016-02-28 20:00:57
http://www.motherjones.com/tom-philpott/2014/10/read-dr-bronners-gmo-ad-thats...

David Bronner, CEO of Dr. Bronner's Magic Soaps, presides over a company with famously wacky product labels. But Bronner himself, grandson of the founder ... has emerged as a serious, though fun-loving, activist, particularly around pesticides and genetically modified crops. Bronner's writing on GMOs is too hot for the advertising pages of the English-speaking world's two most renowned science journals, Science and Nature - even though a slew of magazines ... accepted the Bronner ad. It consists of a short essay, known in publishing as an advertorial, [and] focuses on how GMO crops have led to a net increase in pesticide use in the United States, citing an analysis by Ramon Seidler, a retired senior staff scientist at the Environmental Protection Agency. Bronner ... first published his critique on Huffington Post, and then decided to publish it as an ad in a variety of high-profile magazines. Science was close to accepting it. An ad sales manager for the American Association for the Advancement of Science, which published the magazine, emailed on September 15 that she would send over paper work "in a bit," adding that "[a]fter you sign it, I can take your credit card info." The price: $9,911.00. But hours later, she wrote back, squashing the deal: "This has gone up the ladder quite far and our CEO along with the board have come back saying that we cannot accept the ad. We're concerned about backlash from our members and potentially getting into a battle with the GMO industry."

Note: See the original ad at this link. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on media manipulation and the GMO controversy from reliable major media sources.


Herbicide and Insecticide Use on GMO Crops Skyrocketing While Pro-GMO Media Run Interference
2014-09-15, Huffington Post
Posted: 2016-02-28 19:57:37
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-bronner/herbicide-insecticide-use_b_57913...

Michael Specter's recent articles bashing Vandana Shiva and the labeling of genetically engineered foods (Seeds of Doubt and The Problem with G.M.O. Labels) in the New Yorker are the latest high-profile pro-GMO articles that fail to engage with the fundamental critique of genetically engineered food crops in US soil today: rather than reduce pesticide inputs GMOs are causing them to skyrocket in amount and toxicity. Setting the record straight, Dr. Ramon J. Seidler, Ph.D., former Senior Scientist, Environmental Protection Agency, has recently published a well-researched article documenting the devastating facts, "Pesticide Use on Genetically Engineered Crops," in Environmental Working Group's online AgMag. Dr. Seidler's article cites and links recent scientific literature and media reports, and should be required reading for all journalists covering GMOs, as well as for citizens generally to understand why their right to know if food is genetically engineered is so important. Over 99% of GMO acreage is engineered by chemical companies to tolerate heavy herbicide (glyphosate) use and/or produce insecticide (Bt) in every cell of every plant over the entire growing season. The result is massive selection pressure that has rapidly created pest resistance - the opposite of integrated pest management. Predictably ... we now have huge swaths of the country infested with "superweeds" and "superbugs" resistant to glyphosate and Bt, meaning more volume of more toxic pesticides are being applied.

Note: The negative health impacts of Monsanto's Roundup are well known. Major lawsuits are building over Monsanto's lies to regulators and the public about the safety of glyphosate. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.


Glyphosate Now The Most-Used Agricultural Chemical Ever
2016-02-02, Newsweek
Posted: 2016-02-22 17:07:12
http://www.newsweek.com/glyphosate-now-most-used-agricultural-chemical-ever-4...

The world is awash in glyphosate, the active ingredient in the herbicide Roundup, produced by Monsanto. It has now become the most heavily-used agricultural chemical in the history of the world. A study published Tuesday ... reveals that Americans have applied 1.8 million tons of glyphosate since its introduction in 1974. Worldwide, 9.4 million tons of the chemical have been sprayed onto fields. That’s ... enough to spray nearly half a pound of Roundup on every cultivated acre of land in the world. And it’s troubling, considering that in March 2015 the World Health Organization’s International Agency for Research on Cancer unanimously determined that glyphosate is probably carcinogenic to humans. Research has also shown that glyphosate is an endocrine disruptor, meaning that it interferes with the proper functioning and production of hormones, in human cell lines. The mass-spraying of glyphosate has [also] led to the explosion of resistant weeds, which have evolved to survive despite being sprayed. Already, weeds resistant to the herbicide are found on half of all American farmers’ fields. Glyphosate was once only used on a small-scale. However, in the 1990s, Monsanto began introducing genetically modified crops that were resistant to the herbicides, such as Roundup Ready corn and soybeans. Since then, its use has skyrocketed. At the same time, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has relaxed its rules. Fifty times more glyphosate is allowed on corn grain now than in 1996.

Note: The negative health impacts of Monsanto's Roundup are well known. Major lawsuits are building over Monsanto's lies to regulators and the public about the safety of glyphosate. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.


US military burn pits built on chemical weapons facilities tied to soldiers' illness
2016-02-16, The Guardian (One of the UK's leading newspapers)
Posted: 2016-02-22 17:05:04
http://www.theguardian.com/us-news/2016/feb/16/us-military-burn-pits-chemical...

In 2007, shortly after vice-president Joe Biden learned that his eldest son would be deployed to Iraq, the then-presidential hopeful turned to a modest crowd at the Iowa state fair and admitted that he didn’t want Beau to go. Beau arrived in Iraq the following year. Though he returned home safely ... his health deteriorated, and he was diagnosed with brain cancer. Less than two years later, he died at the age of 46. A new book ... suggests a possible link between his illness and service. Based on clusters of similar cases, scientific studies and expert opinions, author Joseph Hickman proposes in The Burn Pits: The Poisoning of America’s Soldiers that [some] US service members in Iraq and Afghanistan confronted ... respiratory issues relating to their burn pit exposure. Others likely developed more life-threatening conditions such as cancers, Hickman contends, because of what the burn pits were built on top of: the remnants of Saddam Hussein’s chemical weapons program. The Pentagon ordered the use of open-air burn pits to dispose of the wars’ massive volume of waste. Among the other hazardous items service members recall being burned are: petroleum, oil, rubber, tires, plastic, styrofoam, batteries, appliances, electrical equipment, pesticides, aerosol cans, oil, explosives, casings, medical waste and animal and human carcasses. The VA does does not acknowledge a link between burn pits and long-term health problems. Of the 500 people included in Hickman’s burn pit study, the VA denied disability benefits to over 90% of them.

Note: Read more about these toxic burn pits and the US military's ongoing refusal to accept responsibility for the negative impacts of these on veteran's health. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing military corruption news articles from reliable major media sources.


Birth Defects in Brazil May Be Overreported Amid Zika Fears
2016-02-03, New York Times
Posted: 2016-02-22 16:56:35
http://www.nytimes.com/2016/02/04/world/americas/birth-defects-in-brazil-may-...

Brazil’s government is considering tightening the guidelines it currently gives doctors, hospitals, and health care providers for when to report infants born with abnormally small heads, a move intended to reduce the number of false alarms that it has received in wake of the Zika epidemic gripping Brazil. In the last few months, the nation has been grappling with a growing surge in medical reports of microcephaly, a rare condition in which babies are born with unusually small heads. According to data released this week by the Ministry of Health, there have been 4,783 reported cases since October last year. Before that, the nation had about 150 annually. But how many of the babies actually have microcephaly - and whether the condition was caused by the Zika virus - is still far from clear. Of the cases examined so far, 404 have been confirmed as having microcephaly. Only 17 of them tested positive for the Zika virus. Another 709 babies have been ruled out as having microcephaly, according to the government, underscoring the risks of false positives making the epidemic appear larger than it actually is. The remaining 3,670 cases are still being investigated. As is often the case with global health epidemics, the numbers have caused confusion. Some have wondered if Brazil was overstating the extent of its health crisis.

Note: Another article describes a doctors group which has stated the increasing microcephaly may be caused by a larvacide. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the zika virus from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Health Information Center.


Zika virus: Brazilian survey calls into question cause of microcephaly
2016-02-07, ABC (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
Posted: 2016-02-22 16:54:39
http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-02-08/zika-link-questioned-microcephaly-cause...

A four-year survey of more than 100,000 newborn babies in north-eastern Brazil has uncovered hitherto unrecognised patterns of microcephaly. The discovery suggests microcephaly is not necessarily a new phenomenon, and questions whether Zika virus is even the cause. Paediatric cardiologist Dr Sandra Mattos ... and her colleagues surveyed more than 100,000 newborns for congenital heart disease in the Brazilian state of Paraiba. "We tried to establish the pattern of microcephaly over the last four years," Dr Mattos said. "What we expected was that we would have something like ... what has been documented in the official sites. "But we then noticed that we had much, much higher numbers. "Independent of what criteria we used, we had between 2–8 per cent of babies that would fall into the criteria of microcephaly," she said. This represents between 2,000 and 4,000 babies per year in the state of Paraíba - about 1,000 times more than the team expected. The survey goes back to 2012 and 2013 and shows a spike each spring and summer, and while the headlines are all recent, the biggest peak in north-eastern Brazil was actually in 2014. The survey calls into question whether these microcephaly cases are caused by Zika virus or something else. If it is Zika virus, it has been in Brazil for a lot longer than people have thought, but that does not explain why after 50 years Zika has only now been linked to microcephaly.

Note: Another article describes a doctors group which has stated the increasing microcephaly may be caused by a larvacide. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing news articles on the zika virus from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Health Information Center.


Microcephaly cases in Brazil predate Zika virus outbreak, study says
2016-02-10, CBC (Canada's public broadcasting system)
Posted: 2016-02-14 10:03:22
http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/microcephaly-brazil-zika-reality-1.3442580

Pediatric cardiologist Dr. Sandra Mattos had been collecting data on 100,000 newborns in the Brazilian state of Paraiba as part of her work. The microcephaly fears linked to the Zika virus drove her team to check back into hospital records for ... more than 1,600 babies born in the state in the last four years. "We were very, very surprised," Mattos said. Babies with mild microcephaly were present in the population dating back to at least 2012. Scientists think the original reports of 4,700 suspected cases were inflated by over-reporting that didn't stand up when specialists examined the babies. Lingering questions remain, including why more than 80 per cent of suspected microcephaly cases are confined to Brazil's northeast region. And why has microcephaly not appeared in other Latin American countries with similar climates, such as among the 2,100 pregnant women infected with Zika in Colombia? In Berlin, epidemiologist Dr. Christoph Zink has been charting publicly available data from the Zika virus outbreak in terms of when cases appeared, the geographic distribution and the continuous microcephaly epidemic. He proposes another potential explanation. "I would ask my toxicological colleagues in Brazil to please look very closely into the practical application of agrochemicals in their country," Zink said. Mattos said pesticides have been raised as a potential factor by her colleagues in Brazil.

Note: Another article describes a doctors group which has stated the increasing microcephaly may be caused by a larvacide. Notice how the media participates in creating fear of Zika around the world. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing health news articles from reliable major media sources. Then explore the excellent, reliable resources provided in our Health Information Center.


Bay Area vaccine controversy reignites in time for Super Bowl
2016-02-07, San Jose Mercury News (Silicon Valley's leading newspaper)
Posted: 2016-02-14 10:01:18
http://www.mercurynews.com/san-mateo-county-times/ci_29487696/bay-area-vaccin...

California may have closed a chapter in its bitter fight over mandatory vaccines for children, but a new billboard campaign by opponents of the state's pro-vaccination law shows the controversy is far from over. Billboards questioning the safety of vaccines have popped up over the past couple of months from Berkeley and San Francisco to North Fair Oaks. More went up in January in the San Jose area to coincide with Super Bowl 50. The billboards, [which] proclaim that vaccines pose serious health risks ... are the brainchild of Brandy Vaughan, founder of the Council for Vaccine Safety [and former] sales representative for Merck. Vaughan was an outspoken opponent of SB 277. The legislation, signed in June by Gov. Jerry Brown ... eliminated personal belief or religious exemptions to mandatory vaccines for school-age children. Though an effort to repeal the law fell apart, [mandatory] vaccinations continue to be a highly charged and divisive issue across the nation. Vaughan has raised $10,000 online for a dozen billboards in the Bay Area. "We're no longer the land of the free if we give up the choice of what we put in our body," said Vaughan. "My goal is to educate the public and encourage people to do their own research and connect the dots." She calls for tighter government regulation of vaccine-makers and suspects that America's growing vaccination regime is responsible for various health conditions.

Note: Vaughan has been severely intimidated, as she explains in this video. Here's another great video of her. To learn more about her courageous work, see this website and consider donating to her worthy cause. And watch an excellent 11-minute video of highly respected biochemist Garth Nicolson present evidence of the danger of Mycoplasma in vaccines. In a longer video Dr. Nicolson discusses biological warfare agents used against the public.


Don't Leave GMOs in the Dark
2015-07-30, US News & World Report
Posted: 2016-02-14 09:59:17
http://www.usnews.com/opinion/economic-intelligence/2015/07/30/dont-stop-stat...

The use of GMOs is controversial. There is debate in the scientific community as to whether the consumption of GMO foods hurts people directly. But there is no denying that GMOs result in vastly more herbicide (such as Roundup, a top weed killer) being dumped on food crops, and that glyphosphate (the active ingredient in Roundup) probably causes cancer in the quantities used. Other Roundup ingredients are suspect as well. Those who oppose GMOs don't have the upper hand in Congress and so they ... seek to establish a uniform labeling system so that food producers clearly identify whether their products have GMOs or not. Labeling is very popular among American consumers: In multiple polls conducted over the years by many different firms, about 90 percent of Americans consistently support mandatory labeling. Mandatory labeling initiatives are in play in many states, and have passed in three (Maine, Vermont and Connecticut). But Big Ag is spending heavily to block these efforts. The House and Senate are listening to Big Ag rather than to American consumers. The House recently passed a bill that gives the appearance of supporting GMO disclosure while doing the opposite. The bill, H.R. 1599, carries a brilliantly deceptive name that would make George Orwell proud. Called the "Safe and Accurate Food Labeling Act of 2014" the bill would reinforce the current voluntary disclosure system but would prohibit individual states and counties from enacting more stringent legislation. The detractors have branded this bill the "DARK Act" as in "Deny Americans the Right to Know"."

Note: For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.


Strong Support for Labeling Modified Foods
2013-07-27, New York Times
Posted: 2016-02-14 09:44:28
http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/28/science/strong-support-for-labeling-modifie...

Americans overwhelmingly support labeling foods that have been genetically modified or engineered, according to a New York Times poll conducted this year, with 93 percent of respondents saying that foods containing such ingredients should be identified. Three-quarters of Americans expressed concern about genetically modified organisms in their food, with most of them worried about the effects on people’s health. Thirty-seven percent of those worried about G.M.O.’s said they feared that such foods cause cancer or allergies. Among those with concerns, 26 percent said these foods are not safe to eat, or are toxic, while 13 percent were worried about environmental problems that they fear might be caused by genetic engineering. Nearly half of Americans said they were aware that a large amount of the processed or packaged foods they now buy at the grocery store contains genetically modified ingredients. Overall concern was higher among women than men, perhaps not surprisingly, as more women identify themselves as the principal grocery shopper in the household. Americans were almost equally divided about eating genetically modified vegetables, fruits and grains, with about half saying they would not eat them. They were even less comfortable about eating meat from genetically engineered animals: three-quarters said they would not eat G.M.O. fish, and about two-thirds said they would not eat meat that had been modified.

Note: Despite overwhelming public support for labelling of GMOs, the GM lobby has spent huge amounts of money to keep US states from enacting labelling laws. Sadly, they have largely been successful. For more along these lines, see concise summaries of deeply revealing GMO news articles from reliable major media sources.


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