11 Companies Offering Health Care Benefits To Part-time Workers

PHOTO: Pedestrians pictured outside the Trader Joes on 14th Street in in Union Squre, New York, March 17, 2006.

Starbucks Since 1988, Starbucks, based in Seattle, has offered “a comprehensive compensation program” that recognizes and rewards employees, or “partners,” the company says. This benefits package includes “competitive” base pay, health care for eligible full and part-time partners, with an average of 20 hours per week, and equity in the company in the form of Bean Stock. Last year, Starbucks store and non-executive employees received over $234 million in pre-tax gains from Bean Stock, a spokeswoman said. Starbucks also offers a 401(k) savings plan with employer match, tuition reimbursement, short-term disability, paid vacation time, and a 30 percent in-store discount. The spokeswoman says that the premiums that employees pay are lower than those they would pay at 80 percent of other retailers. Starbucks funds approximately 70 percent of the premium costs and covers 100 percent of preventive care services, including full coverage of women’s preventive health, she said. Apparel 3. Land’s End This year, Lands’ End will hire approximately 2,000 employees to work in its call center and distribution centers, with many part-time workers receiving benefits such as the employee discount, access to the on-site medical clinic and use of the on-site fitness center and child care center. Lands’ End, based in Dodgeville, Wis., was acquired by Sears Holdings in 2002. Lands’ End offers ongoing part-time employees dental, vision and life insurance benefits in addition to the employee discount, on-site medical clinic and fitness center options, according to Hawkins, though on-going part-time and seasonal hourly requirements are dependent upon each department. Seasonal employees who commit to returning the following holiday peak season receive extended benefits for the entire year. Home improvement 4. Home Depot Stephen Holmes, spokesman for Home Depot, said the company offers dental, vision, critical illness and disability coverage to employees who have worked at least 90 days. Home Depot, based in Cobb County, Ga., calls itself the world’s largest home improvement specialty retailer, with 2,263 stores in all 50 states, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, U.S. Virgin Islands, Guam, among other countries.

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Hagel ‘deeply concerned’ about health of U.S. nuclear forces

U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel (L) and French Minister of Defense Jean-Yves Le Drian conduct a joint news conference after their meeting at the Pentagon in Washington, January 24, 2014. REUTERS/Yuri Gripas

Girls in grades 6-8 participated in a number of hands-on activities to give them an idea of what doctors, first responders, and researchers deal with on a daily basis. One group was learning how to extract DNA from peas. “We got to learn how to make the DNA come apart from all the peas, and then we had to like, blend it,” explained 6th grader Jordyn Stammeyer. For fellow 6th grader Katie Stoddard, stuff like this is what makes it fun to learn about science, technology, engineering and math. “It’s really cool how they’re letting kids like us learn about science before we’re in high school or college so we know if we want to do it or not,” Stoddard said. Event speaker and 4th-year medical student Rachelle Naridze said that’s what it’s all about: giving young girls something tangible to capture their interest. “I didn’t have the opportunity to do something like this when I was the ages of these girls, and I wish I had, because I think they really pique interests and show that science and math and technology and medicine can be really fun,” said Naridze. Naridze said events like this will help, but it’s also on teachers and parents to encourage young women to get involved in STEM careers. “They’re fully capable of doing these things. We just need to give them the opportunities to see that it’s possible,” Naridze explained. “Yeah, it can be challenging, but I think it’s exciting in many ways and people don’t get exposed to how much fun they can have with it.”

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Mini Medical School Drives Young Women Toward STEM

nuclear forces By David Alexander and Phil Stewart WASHINGTON Fri Jan 24, 2014 6:06pm EST Email Print 1 of 2. U.S. Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel (L) and French Minister of Defense Jean-Yves Le Drian conduct a joint news conference after their meeting at the Pentagon in Washington, January 24, 2014. Credit: Reuters/Yuri Gripas U.S. WASHINGTON (Reuters) – Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said on Friday he was “deeply concerned,” over the health of U.S. nuclear forces after the drug and cheating scandals this month, and that some nuclear officers felt their mission was taken for granted during 13 years of war in Afghanistan and Iraq. Hagel, who ordered a high-level review of nuclear forces on Thursday, told a news conference that the problems affecting missile launch officers were caused by a range of factors. “There’s no one issue here … this is cultural,” Hagel told reporters, pointing to the physical isolation of the force, the pressure to meet exacting standards through regular testing and an incentive structure that may need improvement. Over the past three weeks, an investigation has uncovered illegal drug possession among some missile launch officers as well as cheating on a proficiency exam that resulted in the suspension of 34 people and the retesting of the entire force. The investigation came just months after the head of the intercontinental ballistic missile force was fired for drunkenness and other inappropriate behavior during an official nuclear security visit to Moscow. Hagel, in a swearing-in ceremony for Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James, insisted that U.S. nuclear arms are safe.

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An Australian Audit Of Vaccination Status In Children And Adolescents With Inflammatory Bowel Disease

Many immunization guidelines, including those in Australia, are also now recommending additional pneumococcal vaccine for special risk patients, including those with IBD on immunosuppressive medication [ 18 ]. The treating gastroenterologist is often the main source of immunization advice in childhood and adolescent IBD, particularly if immunosuppressive therapy is commenced. At RCH there is an Immunization Drop-in Centre open business hours, staffed by nurse immunization specialists, where queries can be directed and vaccines administered on the day of clinic appointments. In Victoria, immunization nurse specialist or primary care physicians administer the majority of vaccines. Table 1. Australian National Immunization Program (NIP) Schedule The primary aim of this study was to describe the compliance with current Australian guidelines for vaccination of children and adolescents diagnosed with IBD current at the time of the study [ 19 ]. A secondary aim was to review the serological screening for VPD in patients with IBD. Methods A multi-faceted retrospective review of immunization status was undertaken, with the inclusion criteria being age 0-18 years at diagnosis and on the IBD register. There were a total of nine gastroenterologists working across the two tertiary units [RCH and MMC] at the time of the study. Hospital records of all participants were audited, with any vaccinations administered recorded in the outpatient notes and/or a medication chart if administered at the RCH Immunization Drop-in-centre. A telephone interview survey was conducted with consenting parents using the parent-held child immunization record. The vaccination history was checked against the primary care physician and ACIR records. The routine primary childhood vaccinations and administration of the recommended additional influenza and pneumococcal vaccines was clarified. Therapies were categorized into four groups: ASA derivatives (sulphasalazine, osalazine, mesalazine and balsalazide); oral corticosteroids (prednisolone); immunosuppressive agents (azathioprine, methotrexate) and biologics (infliximab). The RCH patient’s hospital laboratory results were reviewed to identify if any baseline serological testing was performed to review the requirement for additional protection against VPD such as varicella and hepatitis B. Multiple sources were reviewed for any vaccine safety concerns or reports of adverse events following immunization, including: hospital records, general practitioner records and parent reports through interviews.

website link http://www.biomedcentral.com/1471-230X/11/87


Association Between Thiopurine Use And Nonmelanoma Skin Cancers In Patients With Inflammatory Bowel Disease: A Meta-analysis

Thiopurine therapy increases the risk of nonmelanoma skin cancers (NMSCs) in organ transplant patients. The data on NMSC in patients with IBD on thiopurines is conflicting. METHODS: We searched electronic databases for full journal articles reporting on the risk of developing NMSC in patients with IBD on thiopurine and hand searched the reference lists of all retrieved articles. Pooled adjusted hazard ratios and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were determined using a random-effects model. Publication bias was assessed using Funnel plots and Egger’s test. Heterogeneity was assessed using Cochran’s Q and the I2 statistic. RESULTS: Eight studies involving 60,351 patients provided data on the risk of developing NMSC in patients with IBD on thiopurines. The pooled adjusted hazards ratio of developing NMSC after exposure to thiopurines in patients with IBD was 2.28 (95% CI: 1.50 to 3.45). There was significant heterogeneity (I2=76%) between the studies but no evidence of publication bias. Meta regression analysis suggested that the population studied (hospital-based vs. population-based) and duration of follow-up contributed significantly to heterogeneity. Grouping studies based on population studied and duration showed higher hazard rations in hospital-based and shorter duration studies. CONCLUSIONS: The risk of developing NMSC in patients with IBD on thiopurines is only modestly elevated.

this link http://www.nature.com/ajg/journal/vaop/ncurrent/abs/ajg2013451a.html


Australian Medical Specialists To Visit Solomons

The visit is funded by AusAID and arranged by the Royal Australasian College of Surgeons. The team of Dr Brian Costello (surgeon), Dr Anthony White (anaesthetist), Mr Simon Davies (audiologist) and Denise Whelan (nurse) will provide free consultations and treatment for Solomon Islanders between 4 14 February 2013. Patients with ear and hearing problems, tonsil, throat and neck conditions, as well as nasal and sinus problems may be treated by the medical team. Australian High Commissioner to Solomon Islands, Matt Anderson said the annual ENT visit gives Solomon Islanders the chance for specialist consultations and treatment not available in country. They provide specialist advice and treatment not generally available in Honiara as well as provide local staff with a great training opportunity, Mr Anderson said. They make a difference to the people they treat and operate on and they also boost the skills of the local surgeons, doctors and nurses at the hospital, Mr Anderson said. The ENT visit is one of several specialist medical visits made every year to Solomon Islands and is an important part of the Australian aid program to Solomon Islands. The Australian Government currently funds around 50 surgical team visits to Pacific Island countries every year to fill gaps in local medical services and provides on-the-job training to local medical staff. For more information about the visit and screening to see the medical team, contact the surgical department at the National Referral Hospital.

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Study: Navigator Laws Limit Health Exchange Outreach

AP Health Overhaul Spanish

Nine states have passed navigator laws and declined to expand Medicaid: Florida, Georgia, Indiana, Maine, Missouri, Montana, Tennessee, Texas and Wisconsin. Nineteen states have passed navigator laws. State officials said the laws were meant to keep personal information private and make sure the navigators were fully trained. “In Texas, we are being vigilant about safeguarding privacy and keeping personal information out of the wrong hands,” Insurance Commissioner Julia Rathgeber said in a statement in December. “These proposed rules address insufficiencies in federal regulations and make the training and qualifications of navigators in our state more readily apparent to consumers and service providers.” STORY: Most insurance enrollees older than 45, records show The George Washington University survey included 247 health centers in states with Medicaid expansion and 136 states that didn’t. Findings included: States that did not expand Medicaid are less likely to notify patients of potential eligibility. Only 65% of the clinics in restricted states notified patients, while 81% of health clinics in states with expanded Medicaid did so. Clinics in restricted states are much less likely to help people gather documents they need to apply for the federal exchange, with 56% able to do so, compared with 77% of full-implementation states. Health clinic workers are less likely to help fill out paper enrollment forms, with 78% doing so vs. 86% in full-implementation states. Restricted state clinics are much less likely to have enrollment forms and assistance in other languages, as 60% of those states have that information available in clinics while 76% those in full-implementation states do. Clinics in restricted states are less likely to help select a health plan; only 29% of clinics in restricted states did that compared to 51% in states with full implementation of the law. “What shocked me was how significant some of the findings were,” Rosenbaum said. “This was not a case of some of this was a close call; they’re huge differences.” She said it was remarkable that even for existing state-based programs, such as Medicaid, the center workers had access to fewer resources. About 1,250 health centers are required by the law to help enroll medically underserved people, and the Health Resources and Services Administration gave out $150 million in grants to those clinics to assist people.

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China Jails Doctor For Selling Babies

Sign in now to share your story. Sign in with FacebookSign in with Google+ Be first to contribute Add Videos or PhotosBe first to contribute Add Videos or Photos You’ve contributed successfully to: China jails doctor for selling babies Thanks! Check out your photo or video now, and look for it in USA TODAY online, mobile, and print editions. Your submission didnt go through. Please try again. Verifying your credentials… We’re experiencing a few technical issues. Try again By submitting you agree to our Terms of Service Your Take contributions have not been reviewed for accuracy by USA TODAY. Contributors agree to our Terms of Service and are responsible for the content of their videos and photos. Please report any content that violates the terms. China jails doctor for selling babies USATODAY 11:46 p.m. EST January 13, 2014 Doctor told parents their newborns had congenital problem, convinced them to give them up. Story Highlights Case exposed a baby trafficking ring that operated across several provinces.

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In China, doctor who sold patients’ newborns given suspended death sentence

One baby died after being sold. Xinhua said the death penalty had a two-year reprieve, which typically means her sentence is likely to be life imprisonment if she doesn’t commit any crimes during that period. China baby trafficking scandal widens Lee: Baby trafficking tip of iceberg The ring was exposed in July when a mother surnamed Dong told police she suspected her baby had been abducted after Zhang told her that her child had a congenital disease, Xinhua reported when Zhang went on trial in December. “The doctor told me that my son could not go to school and might endanger society as his mother was infected with syphilis and hepatitis,” Xinhua quoted the father as saying. The court heard that Zhang sold the baby the same night for $3,500 to an individual identified as Pan in neighboring Shanxi province. Pan sold the baby onto a villager in Henan province for 59,800 yuan ($9,900.) The baby was found and returned to his parents on August 5. Twin baby girls, which Zhang sold for 30,000 yuan ($5,000) in May 2013, were reunited their parents in August after their mother Wang Yanyan filed a complaint. Zhang told her the twins had serious health issues and would be brain damaged or paralyzed. “I never suspected that she was selling my babies, because she was a family friend,” Wang told CNN in August. Nine suspects were detained including Zhang, who pleaded guilty and expressed remorse in court. “I am deeply sorry for the pain I have brought to those families and beg for forgiveness,” said Zhang. The court said in a statement it believed Zhang should receive a severe penalty: “Her actions violated professional ethics and social morals. Although she partly admits her guilt, her case is considered serious.” The court did not say whether Zhang would appeal.

full article http://www.cnn.com/2014/01/14/world/asia/china-doctor-baby-stealing-sentence/index.html


The Great Canadian Fart Survey

He advises patients to pass flatus whenever necessary. But he makes no mention of whether he’s ever invited a second time to dinner parties. How much flatus collects in the bowel depends on the type of bacteria present, the speed at which gas reaches the rectum and the amount of undigested carbohydrate in the lower bowel. Genetics plays a role. If your Mother produces methane gas there’s a good chance her children will also manufacture it. A lighted match once placed near the trowsers of a friend expelling gas turned royal blue due to methane gas. But please don’t try this experiment. Novartis, the company behind this study, believes it has a flatus buster called Gas-X (simethicone). This is a silicone-based substance included as an antifoaming agent in many other medications for the release of excess gas and digestion. So it’s nothing new. The company claims it works by joining gas bubbles together for easier passage. Not being an expert on farts I can only speculate that this may mean one big explosion rather than a series of little ones!

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Waits are excessive for digestive checkups

The association’s study of 5,500 patient visits to nearly 200 Canadian gastroenterologists shows that 70 per cent of patients referred by family doctors wait more than two months to see a gastroenterologist and have a diagnostic test, while 50 per cent wait more than four months and 20 per cent wait more than 10 months. Continued Below Among these patients, more than one-third have alarm symptoms, which may indicate serious underlying disease such as cancer. Even patients classified as urgent are waiting two to five times longer than best practice targets recommend. Dr. Desmond Leddin, the association president and an associate professor of medicine at Dalhousie University in Halifax, calls the situation “unacceptable.” “We are able to see patients in a time frame that expert review would suggest is only appropriate 20 per cent of the time. There really is a severe problem in terms of wait times for gastroenterology and consultations.” Based on the results of the study, Leddin has asked Prime Minister Paul Martin to incorporate gastroenterology as a priority into the federal government’s program to reduce waiting times. “Patients are suffering while they’re on wait lists,” Leddin says. “And we quite frankly don’t understand why the first ministers and the federal government have identified five areas as a priority for wait time management but gastroenterology is not on that list.” Those five key areas are: cancer treatment, cardiac care, diagnostic imaging, joint replacements and sight restoration. A simple cash infusion to bolster human and technical resources will not remedy the current wait list situation, Leddin says. “Canadian gastroenterologists will need to work hand-in-hand with federal and provincial governments … and move toward the improved use of these resources.

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