17-17 Segment 1: Penicillin Allergy? Probably Not

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Millions of Americans believe they are allergic to penicillin. However, most of them are wrong. Experts discuss how these misdiagnoses happen and what results when so many of us avoid the most effective, yet cheapest antibiotic.

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17-16 Segment 1: Workplace Genetic Testing

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Workers are currently protected from having to take genetic tests for employers. However, a bill under consideration in the US House—HR1313—would allow corporate wellness plans to ask workers for a test, and penalize them through markedly higher health insurance premiums if they refuse. The bill also provides no protections against how or to whom the information is distributed.

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17-15 Segment 1: Cancer Research Recruitment

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Clinical trials drive medical advancement, but cancer clinical trials seldom meet their goals in recruiting patients. Experts discuss causes, consequences, and actions being taken to meet needs.

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17-14 Segment 1: Putting the Brakes on Environmental Regulation

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The President’s proposed 31 percent budget cut for the Environmental Protection Agency and the appointment of a prominent EPA critic as the agency’s head have raised fears that the nation’s air and water quality will be ignored. EPA critics say the agency needs cutting, as it’s been activist in pursuing “worthless” strategies to reduce unproven global warming. Experts on each side discus pro’s and con’s of EPA cuts.

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17-13 Segment 1: Difficult Patients

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Patients used to accept doctors’ orders without question. Today, more are asking questions and challenging their doctors’ opinions. However, even those who do it politely are likely to be labeled “difficult.” A doctor whose late wife nearly made a career of being a difficult patient discusses how patients can do it respectfully and fruitfully.

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17-12 Segment 1: Shortening the Course of Antibiotics

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Since the introduction of antibiotics in World War II, doctors have prescribed courses of treatment that typically ran longer than necessary. Bacterial resistance is forcing a reevaluation, shortening courses sometimes to just a few days and even prompting doctors to advise not using all pills if patients feel better.

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17-11 Segment 1: Tone Deafness

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Many people sing badly and think they’re tone deaf, but a surprisingly low proportion of them truly can’t tell one note from another. They not only can’t sing, they also can’t enjoy music, may have trouble with certain forms of language, and may be unable to communicate emotion in their speech.

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