This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. A selection of health policy news from Minnesota, Texas, North Carolina, Connecticut and California.Bloomberg: Abortion Clinics Close At Record Pace After States Tighten RulesAt least 58 U.S. abortion clinics — almost 1 in 10 — have shut or stopped providing the procedure since 2011 as access vanishes faster than ever amid a Republican-led push to legislate the industry out of existence. A wave of regulations that makes it too expensive or logistically impossible for facilities to remain in business drove at least a third of the closings (Deprez, 9/3).Minnesota Public Radio State To End Health Care Insurance Safety Net ProgramAfter gathering feedback from some of Minnesota’s sickest patients, the state is moving ahead with a plan to close a safety-net program that helped people with prior health problems get insurance. The federal health care law prevents insurance companies from denying people with pre-existing conditions, so high-risk pools like the Minnesota Comprehensive Health Association are no longer necessary — at least in theory (Richert, 9/3).The Texas Tribune/Kaiser Health News: Texas Minors Can No Longer Use Tanning Salons The relationship between tanning beds and skin cancer has concerned lawmakers on a state and national level for years, but there has been no consensus on how to address it. The federal government requires tanning bed manufacturers to disclose the risks on warning labels, and some states require youth to have parental consent to tan (Serrano, 9/3).North Carolina Health News: State Health Department Sees Sharp Rise In At-Will WorkersWith the passage of a new law, Gov. Pat McCrory has been given the power to make hundreds of workers in DHHS exempt from the State Personnel Act. What will that mean for the department? (Dukes and Hoban, 9/3).CT Mirror Connecticut Officials Trying To Redesign Health Care System, But Advocates Wary State officials and representatives from the health care and insurance industries are developing a plan to redesign how health care is delivered and paid for in the state, an initiative aimed at affecting the vast majority of Connecticut residents. The goal is to improve the quality of health care by changing the way private insurers and public programs like Medicare pay for it (Becker, 09/03).California Healthline: Health Bills On Docket As Legislature Moves Into Final PhaseOver the next 10 days, a number of health-related bills will get their final floor votes in the state Assembly and Senate. One of them is a proposal to expand independence of practice for pharmacists. SB 493 by Sen. Ed Hernandez (D-West Covina) passed out of Appropriations last week and is waiting for an Assembly floor vote. What won’t hit the floor is SB 491, also authored by Hernandez, which would have expanded independence of practice for nurse practitioners. It was held up in the Assembly Committee on Appropriations last week (Gorn, 9/3). State Highlights: At Least 58 U.S. Abortion Clinics Close After New, Tighter Laws
Though most of the state-run online insurance marketplaces have not been hobbled by the same types of difficulties that marred the federal exchange’s launch, some states are successfully enrolling their residents while others still confront hurdles.Politico: State Health Exchanges Are Showing Mixed ResultsOn the Obamacare racetrack, Washington, Kentucky and New York are leading the pack. Relatively free of the technical problems that have plagued the federally run insurance exchanges — but still encumbered by some glitches of their own — the 15 state-run exchanges tell a varied story. Some states are charging ahead on enrollment while others have run up against roadblocks (Cunningham, 11/5).Kaiser Health News: Oregon’s State Exchange May Be Worse Than Healthcare.govAs the federal government consumes humble pie over failures in the health insurance exchanges, some states that have set up their own exchanges are also struggling. Oregon has yet to enroll one single person, and it’s been reduced to pawing through paper applications to figure out eligibility. When Cover Oregon opened Oct. 1, executive director Rocky King was excited. He’d been preparing for years. ‘Day one, we are accepting applications. And staff at the Oregon Health Authority and Cover Oregon are ready to process those applications,’ he said on opening day (Foden-Vencil, 11/4).Health Policy Solutions (a Colo. news service): ‘Odious, Embarrassing’ System Driving Down Health Sign-UpsColorado has no quick fix for a seemingly endless Medicaid application that health exchange board members believe is driving away customers and decreasing the number of people buying health insurance through Colorado’s new multi-million dollar health exchange. Finger-pointing between state and exchange managers escalated on Monday as exchange board members said Colorado should have been better prepared and that the state’s lagging system is an embarrassment (Kerwin McCrimmon, 11/4).A new studies estimates the number of people who will be eligible for subsidies when shopping on the exchanges — Kaiser Health News: Capsules: 17 Million People Eligible For Premium Subsidies, Study FindsSeventeen million people who are now uninsured or who buy their own health insurance will be eligible for tax credits next year to help purchase coverage on the health law’s online marketplaces or exchanges, according to an analysis released Tuesday (Carey, 11/5).Politico: Kaiser Study Sees Broad Access To Insurance Subsidies Nearly six in 10 people eligible for the insurance exchanges next year will qualify for subsidies to help buy coverage, a new Kaiser Family Foundation analysis says. The group estimates that 29 million Americans will qualify to shop on the new state-based marketplaces — and 17 million of those earn little enough that they could collect income-based subsidies. More live in Texas, California and Florida than anywhere else (Cunningham, 11/5). Meanwhile, here’s the latest news about healthcare.gov – The Hill: HHS: Expect Outages At HealthCare.GovFederal health officials said that consumers can expect further outages at Obamacare’s troubled enrollment portal as the site undergoes repairs in the next four weeks. A spokeswoman for the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) downplayed the site’s semi-regular breakdowns, widely interpreted as a sign of the deep technical problems facing repair teams (Viebeck, 11/4).Modern Healthcare: ‘Significant Fixes’ Made To HealthCare.Gov’s Electronic Submissions Process, CMS SaysObama administration officials reported progress Monday in fixing problems with electronic submissions between the federal HealthCare.gov insurance marketplace and insurance companies. They also claimed consumers’ ability to complete enrollment applications has improved (Dickson, 11/4). This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Despite Some Success, State Health Exchanges Get Mixed Reviews
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Insurers Struggling To Meet Health Law’s Shifting Deadlines The administration’s effort to stretch the enrollment period after the botched rollout of the healthcare.gov website has complicated efforts by insurers and left some consumers concerned about their coverage.Reuters: Insurers Wary Of New Obamacare Fix For January Health PlansInsurance companies are struggling with a new request by the Obama administration to make sure people receive medical benefits under healthcare reform come January 1, even if they miss a sign-up deadline set for next Monday. The government has sought to reassure consumers, already frustrated by technical problems that stalled access to its healthcare.gov enrollment website in October and November, that those who need coverage starting on New Year’s Day will be able to sign up (Humer and Krauskopf, 12/18).USA Today: Insurers, Consumers Await HHS Guidance As Deadline LoomsSome frustrated consumers are sending premium payments to insurers who have never heard of them. Others say they will pass up federal subsidies and pay full price through insurers, while still others have given up altogether on the promise of health insurance by Jan. 1. Consternation and confusion over applications sent through the federal healthcare.gov website continue into the last seven days before the Dec. 23 enrollment deadline. Consumers with health issues are particularly nervous about the prospect of not having insurance at the start of the new year (O’Donnell, 12/17).Fox News: Obamacare ‘Fix’ One Month Later: Are People Still Covered? Nearly six million people have had their coverage cancelled since the ACA became [law] because their plans failed to meet the required essential health benefit guidelines, which provide coverage for things like maternity care and ambulatory services. Now, consumers in states that have opted to extend previously-cancelled coverage have to decide if they want their old plans back or fine a new one. Under the Affordable Care Act, every person in the country must have insurance by the end of open enrollment period on April 1 or will face a penalty of up to $95 a year, or 1 percent of their annual income, whichever is higher. The administration announced last Thursday that insurance companies would be required to accept premium payments for those who want coverage starting on Jan. 1, until Dec. 31 (Rogers, 12/17). Los Angeles Times: Fewer Than 20% Of Blue Shield Customers Extend Health CoverageGiven the choice, fewer than 20 percent of Blue Shield of California customers with canceled policies opted for a three-month extension of their current health plans. The San Francisco insurer said about 15,000 policyholders out of 80,000 who were affected chose to keep their health plans until March 31 (Terhune, 12/17).
This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. Consumers With Canceled Insurance Exempted From Individual Mandate Through 2016 Those who lost coverage because insurers canceled their plans have been given a hardship exemption through October 2016 from the requirement to have health insurance or pay a fine. Other stories look at rising medical identity theft and the frustration of a cancer survivor who enrolled in a plan based on misinformation that her doctor was included in its network.Fox News: Obamacare Band-Aid? Millions Potentially Exempted From Individual Mandate Through 2016The Obama administration is throwing another Band-Aid at the millions of people wounded by the Affordable Care Act when they were booted from their existing health coverage. The latest change, quietly announced last week, allows many of them to skirt the law’s “individual mandate” through 2016. The change was included in last week’s announcement that the government would let people keep otherwise out-of-compliance health plans for another two years. Buried in the official memo was a line giving people whose policies were canceled a “hardship exemption” through October 2016 (3/12). NBC News: U.S. Health Care System Has $5.6 Billion Security ProblemHealth care organizations are under attack. Criminals are stealing patient records to commit medical identity theft. And the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has made the situation worse, according to a new report from privacy and information security research firm Ponemon Institute. Ponemon estimates that these breaches cost the industry about $5.6 billion a year (Weisbaum, 3/12). Fox News: New York Cancer Survivor Stuck In Obamacare Mess Over Doctor ConfusionMonths after cancer survivor Annette Frey was dropped by her insurance provider and forced to sign up for Obamacare, the New Yorker is still finding herself on the losing end of a bureaucratic runaround. At the heart of her maze of problems is the fact that the plan she signed up for on the New York exchange listed doctors she needed as “in network” — she later found out they were not. Frey tells FoxNews.com she’s at her wit’s end trying to decode what she needs to do to be able to see the doctor who diagnosed her lung cancer two years ago (Chakraborty, 3/12).
State Highlights: Mass. First To Require Health Care Price Tags; Health Disparities In Wis. This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. A selection of health policy stories from Massachusetts, Wisconsin, Illinois, Connecticut, California, Texas, South Dakota and Pennsylvania.WBUR: Massachusetts Becomes First State To Require Price Tags For Health CareMassachusetts has launched a new era of shopping. It began last week. Did you notice? Right this minute, if you have private health insurance, you can go to your health insurer’s website and find the price of everything from an office visit to an MRI to a Cesarean Section. For the first time, health care prices are public. … Then two years ago Massachusetts passed a law that pushed health insurers and hospitals to start making this once vigorously guarded information more public. Now as of October 1st, Massachusetts is the first state to require that insurers offer real time prices (Bebinger, 10/8). Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Wisconsin’s High Health Care Rank Hides Unequal Minority Care Wisconsin remains one of the top states in the country for the quality of its health care system and its access to health care. But the state’s strong overall performance masks a long-standing flaw: African-Americans and Latinos are much less likely to receive the same quality of care or have the same access as whites. The disparities can be seen in the annual State Snapshots compiled by the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. The report is based on more than 100 measures of quality and access to care (Boulton, 10/7). Modern Healthcare: Illinois Tackling Medicaid With Aggressive ACO ModelThe development of Medicare and private accountable care organizations has led many states to adopt similar approaches to managing care and costs for their Medicaid populations. In Illinois, provider groups are starting one of the most aggressive state-sponsored projects in which they will eventually bear all financial risk (Herman, 10/7). CT Mirror: Children’s Mental Health Changes Aimed At Addressing ER Crisis Gov. Dannel P. Malloy is expected to announce a plan Wednesday to expand the services available for children and teens with significant mental health needs, a response to concerns about the growing number of young people going to — and often stuck in — emergency rooms in psychiatric crisis. The plan includes making more crisis stabilization and respite beds available for young people with mental health needs, additional funding to encourage providers to open more psychiatric residential treatment beds, and funds for additional therapeutic support for children with acute needs who live at home or in congregate care (Levin Becker, 10/7). Los Angeles Times: Supreme Court Is Asked Again To Block Texas Law On Abortion ClinicsBecause of the law, critics say more than 900,000 Texas women of reproductive age now live more than 150 miles from a licensed abortion facility. The impact is most severe among low-income women who find it hardest to travel, they said. … More than 20 years ago, the Supreme Court said states may regulate abortion to protect the health of women, but they may not put an “undue burden” on those who seek to end an early pregnancy. Justices have not yet defined what amounts to an “undue burden” on these women (Savage, 10/7).The Associated Press: Clinic Stops Abortions After Confusion Over RulingThe only remaining abortion clinic in Texas west of San Antonio has halted abortions following days of confusion over the interpretation of a federal court ruling, an official with the clinic said Tuesday. Gloria Martinez, administrative nurse at Hilltop Women’s Reproductive Center, said her center thought it was exempted from a rule that requires clinics to upgrade to surgical centers. State officials “called us Friday, saying that we could open, so we opened Saturday. Then they called us Saturday, around 3 in the afternoon, telling us we needed to close immediately,” Martinez said. The ruling last week by the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals allowed Texas to enforce tough restrictions that effectively close all but seven abortion facilities in the state. The ruling provided exemptions for a clinic in El Paso (Llorca, 10/7). The Associated Press: South Dakota Measure On Doctor Choice Stirs DebateSouth Dakota patients could have more choice of doctors within their health insurance networks if voters approve a ballot measure that is drawing strong opposition from the health insurance industry. The proposal on the ballot, Initiated Measure 17, seems simple enough: doctors who agree to the conditions set forth by insurers, including payments for services provided to patients, could join the insurer’s preferred providers list. Preferred providers, also known as in-network doctors, usually charge less for services than those outside the network (Cano, 10/7). Stateline: Medicaid ADHD Treatment Under ScrutinyAttention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, or ADHD, affects one in every seven school-aged children in the U.S., and between 2003 and 2011 the number of children diagnosed with the condition rose by more than 40 percent. Doctors have considerable leeway in deciding the best course of treatment for a child with the condition, no matter who is paying the bill. But children covered by Medicaid, the joint federal-state health care program for the poor, are at least 50 percent more likely to be diagnosed with the disorder. Georgia alone spends $28 million to $33 million annually on these treatments out of $2.5 billion Medicaid budget, according to the Barton Child Law and Policy Center here at Emory University. That is partly because of the toll poverty takes on kids and a lack of resources in poorer schools (Vestal, 10/8). Sacramento Bee: Steinberg To Launch Mental Health FoundationOutgoing [California] Senate leader Darrell Steinberg said Tuesday that after he leaves the Legislature at the end of next month he will form a foundation to work on mental-health policy issues, an area that has long been a priority for the Sacramento Democrat (Rosenhall, 10/7).Pittsburgh Post-Gazette: Pennsylvania Regulators: Highmark Medicare Plan Violates Consent DecreeThe state and UPMC say one of Highmark’s brand new Medicare Advantage products runs afoul of the recent consent decree signed by the two health giants, and both are contemplating legal action in order to have the plan nixed by state courts. The plan in question is a narrow-network “Community Blue” plan, with monthly premiums starting at $0. UPMC’s hospitals are not part of the plan’s doctor network, nor are Excela Health in Westmoreland County, Butler Health System or Washington Health System (Toland, 10/6).San Jose Mercury News/Monterey Herald: Seaside VA Clinic Forced To Cut Back On Mental Health ServicesOn the campus of CSU Monterey Bay, the Department of Veterans Affairs clinic at 3401 Engineer Lane sees about 2,800 veterans a year for mental health issues, including post-traumatic stress disorder. But following the departure of two psychiatrists in July, the clinic will now require many mental health patients to use videoconferencing with out-of-county doctors and will no longer allow walk-ins, unless it is an emergency. VA spokesman Michael Hill-Jackson said it is seeking to replace the psychiatrists, who made up half the staff (Molnar, 10/7).California Healthline: New Leaders In Legislature Plan To Include Health Care Issues On AgendaAssembly member Toni Atkins (D-San Diego) assumed the Assembly Speaker role in May, and Sen. Kevin de León (D-Los Angeles) is expected to be named Senate pro Tem later this month. The two legislators covered a range of issues at yesterday’s Public Policy Institute of California event, moderated by PPIC president and CEO Mark Baldassare. Health care topics included Medi-Cal provider reimbursement rates and extending health care coverage to the undocumented population (Gorn, 10/7).Boston Globe: Gubernatorial Rivals Spar Over Child Agency, Health CareDemocrat Martha Coakley and Republican Charlie Baker were more combative in their second debate, quarreling pointedly Tuesday night over the state’s troubled child protection system and spiraling health care costs (Levenson, 10/8).
Health Care Costs And Health Law Politics: How Issues Are Shaking Out In Public Opinion And Policy Strategies This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. A poll by The Associated Press/NORC Center for Public Affairs Research explores American’s thoughts about health insurance, peace of mind and whether the health law is keeping costs down. Meanwhile, Politico explores the GOP’s chances for repeal. The Associated Press: Poll: Many Insured Struggle With Medical BillsThey have health insurance, but still no peace of mind. Overall, 1 in 4 privately insured adults say they doubt they could pay for a major unexpected illness or injury. A new poll from The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research may help explain why President Barack Obama faces such strong headwinds in trying to persuade the public that his health care law is holding down costs (10/13).Politico: GOP Can’t Give Up Obamacare Repeal TalkRepublicans may be split on many issues, but they remain fiercely united in their loathing for the Affordable Care Act; they still see it as a terrible law, and they want it to go away. But GOP staffers and health care wonks also know that, even if they win the Senate, they’re not going to accomplish that in the next two years while President Barack Obama is still in office. And after that? Well, think of the last time a major social program was repealed after three enrollment seasons, with millions of people getting benefits. That’s right — it hasn’t happened (Nather, 10/13).
President Donald Trump signed an extension of a Department of Veterans Affairs law on Wednesday to continue a program that helps veterans seek health care outside the VA system. The original legislation, commonly known as the Veterans Choice Act, was slated to expire in August. The measure signed Wednesday by Mr. Trump extends the program until the remaining funds are used, which is expected to happen by the end of the year. (Kesling, 4/19) This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription. In other news on veterans’ health care — Program Allowing Veterans To Seek Care Outside VA Health System Extended President Donald Trump signed the extension of the Veterans Choice Act on Wednesday. There won’t be much noticeable change from the action, but a new bill dubbed “Choice 2.0” is slated to be introduced to Congress in the fall. President Donald Trump on Wednesday moved a step closer to fulfilling his campaign promise to reform the troubled Veterans Affairs department, but some veterans groups are concerned that the administration may be working toward privatizing their healthcare. (Lambert, 4/19) Reuters: Trump Extends Program Allowing Some Veterans To Use Local Doctors, Hospitals Previous KHN Coverage: Trump Extends Flawed ‘Fix’ For VA Health Scandals NPR: Veterans Gain Health Coverage Through The Affordable Care Act Almost half a million veterans gained health care coverage during the first two years of the Affordable Care Act, a report finds. In the years leading up to the implementation of the ACA’s major coverage provisions, from 2010 to 2013, nearly 1 million of the nation’s approximately 22 million veterans didn’t have health insurance. (Boddy, 4/19) The Wall Street Journal: Trump Signs Legislation Extending Private-Care Program For Veterans
Page 2 Camera Review Unlike other sites, we thoroughly test every product we review. We use industry standard tests in order to compare features properly. We’ll always tell you what we find. We never, ever accept money to review a product. Tell us what you think – send your emails to the Editor. Page 1 OnePlus 7 Pro Review Key Specifications Sections Page 4 Screen Review Page 3 Battery Life Review Pros Underwhelming cameras No wireless charging No water resistance Large and unwieldy Oxygen OS user experience Stunning 90Hz HDR display Top-notch performance Great battery life Cons Verdict The OnePlus 7 Pro manages to innovate in one of the most competitive technology markets out there while still circumventing convention by undercutting the majority of the competition on cost. Even if wireless charging and water resistance aren’t part of the equation, It has one of the nicest displays you’ll find on a phone, is a superb performer, offers great battery life and the camera is always improving. Review Price: £649 Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 128GB/256GB internal storage 6GB/8GB/12GB RAM 6.67-inch QHD+ 90Hz Fluid AMOLED 48MP main camera w/ OIS 16MP ultra-wide 117-degree sensor 8MP tele w/ OIS + 3x optical zoom 16MP pop-up front camera 30W Warp Charge fast-charging 4000mAh battery Page 6 OnePlus 7 Pro 5G Review The OnePlus 7 Pro has the best display currently available on a phone, the latest internals and a design that takes a lot of inspiration from the Samsung Galaxy S10. It’s also the priciest OnePlus phone yet, moving away from the company’s idea of offering high-end specs for a bargain price.Despite starting life as a plucky underdog, however, OnePlus has had to grow up fast and nothing highlights the momentum the company has amassed like its debut entrants into the phone market for 2019: the OnePlus 7 and OnePlus 7 Pro.The OnePlus 7 Pro is for those who want the best the company has to offer and a phone that packs in enough to compete with the latest rival flagships; devices like the Samsung Galaxy S10 Plus and Huawei P30 Pro. Page 5 Performance Review Related: Interested in 5G? Check out our OnePlus 7 Pro 5G reviewOnePlus 7 Pro design brings a new level of attention to detailThe OnePlus 7 Pro looks and feels unlike anything the company has produced thus far. While the standard OnePlus 7 bears more than a passing resemblance to last year’s OnePlus 6T, the Pro model is a wholly different beast.The lessons that Oppo learnt creating its Find X 2018 flagship may well have played a part in the engineering used by OnePlus’ new star player (as OnePlus uses Oppo’s production facilities to build its phones), based on not just its looks but the way it feels too.Almost bezel-freeAn expansive and near bezel-free curved display stretches across the phone’s front, granting it an impressive 88.6 percent screen-to-body ratio; one of the highest of any current smartphone. Essentially, when looking at the front of the 7 Pro, all you’ll see is screen, especially thanks to the display’s curved edges.Related: Amazon Prime Day Smartphone DealsWith a curved Gorilla Glass front mirrored by the phone’s curved glass back, the metal frame that sits within this sandwich is decidedly thin, but in spite of this, the phone still feels sturdy and well-built.There’s still room for OnePlus’ signature physical alert slider along its right side – a defining feature on the company’s phones that lets you quickly switch between ringing, vibrating and silent sound profiles without having to look; it’s a small but important bonus that you’d miss, were it taken away.With no notch or hole-punch camera to speak of, OnePlus has instead opted for a motorised pop-up front-facing snapper, akin to the one found on the Vivo Nex (although this one looks and feels a lot more robust).It’s quick enough for face unlocking and, as with every phone that’s integrated such a system, comes with claims of rigorous testing and reliability.Related: Best Android phoneOnePlus states that the phone’s front camera mechanism has withstood some 300,000 actuations during testing, without any sign of lag, slowdown or breakage. There’s fall detection in there too, which will pull the camera back inside the moment the phone detects itself hurtling towards the ground.Collectively, you should feel comforted by these assurances, but as ever, in the real world, I still have my doubts about the longevity of any moving parts on a phone, especially one a delicate and intricate as a motorised camera unit.For all the care and attention OnePlus has poured into the aesthetics of the 7 Pro, such beauty does come at a practical sacrifice that some might not be willing to overlook.For a start, with a 6.67-inch, 19.5:9 display; this is a very big device – OnePlus’ largest ever. It’s almost identical in width to its predecessor but notably taller, plus those narrow metal sides give you less purchase, making one-handed use precarious.Add to that a complete lack of any one-handed mode within the software and elements at the top of the screen within apps (such as the placement of Instagram’s story ‘bubbles’) require two hands or a risky shimmy up and down the phone’s body to be pulled in reach of a thumb.There’s also the matter of the finish of the phone. I appreciate OnePlus’ decision to shy away from a boring all-black body, instead offering up three colours at launch (partially tied to different RAM and storage configurations).For the base 6GB RAM/128GB internal storage SKU your only option is ‘Mirror Gray’ – an understated colourway for those uninterested in flash and flare, or ideal if you’re looking to slap a case on it immediately. This is the closest thing to black on offer from this generation of OnePlus.Fork out for the 8GB/256GB model and you have the full gamut of colours available to you. Mirror Gray is accompanied by ‘Almond’ – a mix of polished gold metal and an iridescent cream tone set behind glass, similar in styling to a gold iPhone XS. Nebula Blue is arguably the biggest head-turner and the finish that my review unit (pictured) came in.While all three looks deserve praise for their ‘understated cool’, if you’re planning on going caseless, ergonomics once again come into play. The gloss finish of the Mirror Gray and Almond models backs attract fingerprints as readily as any of their competitors, while the finely-textured glass given to the Nebula Blue model will remain comparatively smudge-free.The trade-off is that the blue model’s treated rear also lacks grip which, paired with it’s already unwieldy form, pushes the chance of the phone slipping from your fingers way up. While I haven’t asked OnePlus directly, I have no doubt that the 7 Pro’s fancy new screen isn’t cheap to replace. You have been warned.Related: OnePlus 7 ReviewThe OnePlus 7 display is the first truly competitive mobile HDR screenOn a more positive note, that display is nothing short of exceptional. Out the box, it may not be as accurately tuned as some of its rivals’ screens but there are plenty of tools to customise the viewing experience should you wish to tinker around.The company also lauded the screen’s A+ rating from independent body DisplayMate, before the 7 Pro had even officially launched, just in case there was any doubt about its capabilities.HDR visuals on 6.67-inch display are stunningIt’s the first time we’ve seen a OnePlus screen transcend above Full HD+ resolution. This Quad HD+ panel is also HDR10 complaint, with approved support for services like Netflix – a popular service that previously only offered limited support for OnePlus devices.Related: What is HDR?The ‘Fluid AMOLED’ panel, as OnePlus calls it, gets its name not just from the inky blacks and vivid colours it can push out, but the intriguing 90Hz refresh rate that it supports.Although you can manually dial it down to 60Hz, as most phones use (or have it jump down when battery saver mode is activated), the 7 Pro’s screen remains fixed at 90Hz. The result is an effortlessly smooth-looking user experience that lends itself perfectly to the idea that this is a cutting-edge handset.Seeing really is believing, especially as only a handful of other devices offer anything close to what OnePlus has cooked up here.Apple’s ProMotion technology, along with the Asus ROG Phone‘s OLED and the Razer Phone series’ IGZO displays all have the ability to operate at refresh rates notably higher than 60Hz, but in the smartphone space, the OnePlus 7 Pro might be the most approachable and mainstream handset to showcase such technology.There are known concerns around the impact on battery life leaving the smooth 90Hz setting on all the time might have, but based on the longevity I experienced without ever switching it off (or rather, down to 60Hz), I’d just enjoy its inclusion and how it elevates acts as simple as swiping around the interface.The worst thing about the feature? You really notice its absence when using any phone that doesn’t support it.The display smarts don’t stop there. There’s also the integrated optical in-display fingerprint sensor – an evolution on the feature that OnePlus introduced with last year’s 6T.This time around, OnePlus has enlarged the sensor’s read area and reduced latency; all I can say is that it feels much faster and more reliable than its predecessor, even if it can still be tripped up by particularly cold or wet hands.With next-to-no bezel, there’s no notification LED to speak of, so instead light pulses down the curved edges of the display in the corresponding app colour to great effect – a feature that both Samsung and Oppo have used on curved-display laden devices.OnePlus 7 Pro camera has greater versatility, but is that enough?OnePlus has kept up with principle imaging trends in the realm of smartphone photography, and the OnePlus 7 Pro makes the same move that many of its contemporaries already have; implementing a triple-sensor on the back.The 7 Pro’s three-lens arrangement is comprised of a 48-megapixel main snapper with OIS (optical image stabilisation), an 8-megapixel telephoto sensor, again with OIS, that grants the phone 3x lossless optical zoom, while a 16-megapixel ultra-wide angle sensor, with an impressive 117-degree field of view, rounds things out.Related: Best camera phonesOnePlus has worked hard to ensure the hardware is put to good use, with the phone boasting enhanced versions of the company’s Nightscape (version 2.0) scene mode and pixel-binning technology (condensing the image data of four pixels into one to reduce shake and noise) as a result of that huge 48-megapixel main sensor.The ultra-wide angle sensor lets you fit more in-frame, only adding to the 7 Pro’s photographic versatility.The quality of the telephoto snapper also left me impressed, with pleasing detail retention. Its narrower aperture means images do, however, suffer in low-light shootingMain sensor (left), telephoto (right) – drag the white slide bar to compare the two imagesAs for low-light photography, I was surprised by the results produced by the phone, but not in a good way. OnePlus worked hard to improve the low light capabilities of last year’s OnePlus 6 and 6T, but this new hardware is clearly trickier to tune. As before, we’ll likely see subsequent software updates that rectify the phone’s current low light capabilities which I’m hoping will improve with time.The newly-updated Nightscape mode certainly helps alleviate general low-light shooting but over-corrects, with hard-hitting sharpening and mismanaged colour correction that give shots an unnatural finish.For a true deep-dive into this phone’s imaging capabilities, jump over to our full OnePlus 7 Pro camera review.The OnePlus 7 Pro performance is stunningThe OnePlus X notwithstanding OnePlus isn’t in the business on skimping on performance. When you buy a OnePlus phone, you know you’re getting a top-notch processor and complementary smarts to match. Never has that been truer than with the OnePlus 7 Pro.I already mentioned the memory and storage options that the 7 Pro is available in, which range from generous to pure excess (with up to an additional £150 in tow) but speed and power are everywhere within the phone’s internals.The latest and greatest 7nm Qualcomm Snapdragon 855 chipset takes charge, which is also how OnePlus is able to convert the 7 Pro into the OnePlus 7 Pro 5G – the 5G-capable brother to the standard model that also integrates Qualcomm’s complementary X50 5G modem.Then there’s the inclusion of Universal Flash Storage 3.0. OnePlus has managed to beat Samsung to the punch after the Korean tech giant had to pull its first foldable, the Galaxy Fold, before launch as a result of engineering and reliability issues.Related: Samsung Galaxy Fold – The final chapterWith the Fold out of the way, it looks as though the OnePlus 7 Pro will be the first phone on the market to support UFS 3.0, with Samsung following with the rumoured Galaxy Note 10 later into 2019.The technology is theoretically up to twice as fast when it comes to read and write speeds, which affects everything from app load times to file transfers.There’s so much powerful hardware here that I can’t find fault with the 7 Pro’s performance, and this new addition only serves to help the 7 Pro take the lead in an area that its pricier competitors still haven’t ventured.OnePlus 7 Pro battery life goes beyond expectationThe story of speed on the OnePlus 7 Pro doesn’t stop with the phone’s fluid user experience and raw performance; it sports suitably solid fast charging technology too.We first encountered the company’s Warp Charge feature on last year’s OnePlus 6T McLaren Edition and it’s now become part of the mainstream offering here.The 30W Warp Charge adapter and complimentary cable are unquestionably sizeable (although the previous generation Dash/Fast Charger wasn’t really any more compact) but the convenience they bring nullifies the hassle of carrying them around.The 7 Pro’s large footprint means it’s also able to carry a hefty 4000mAh battery within its belly and, with the included Warp Charger, that sizeable cell can be refilled from flat to full in under an hour and twenty. What really impresses is the initial charge rate, however.A third of the battery can be filled in just 15 minutes and more than a day’s worth of juice can be replenished within 30. Most of the battery can be charged within an hour too, so you never have to wait long to give the 7 Pro a meaningful top up.While quick in their own right, OnePlus’ fast-charging capabilities are no longer industry-leading; Huawei has instead taken that crown. The OnePlus 7 Pro does also lag slightly behind due to its lack of any form of wireless charging – an absentee feature that the company has explained may never be part of the equation on its devices.As for longevity, the OnePlus 7 Pro, left me thoroughly impressed. While charging the OnePlus 7 Pro is a lot less painless an experience compared to some phones (I’m looking at you Apple), not having to charge it all was an even bigger win.I was consistently reaching two days of use and up to 5 hours of screen-on time on a single charge, which is well above most modern phones’ more approachable promised day-long endurance.If I had flipped the refresh rate down to 60Hz or relied on battery saver mode at all, there’s every chance the phone would have lasted even longer.Little has changed with OnePlus 7 Pro software, and that’s no bad thingAndroid 9.0 underpins the software experience on this generation of OnePlus phones but the company’s OxygenOS overlay (version 9.5.2 as tested) is what you’re actually navigating around. It’s a great tweaked take on base Android that’s slick and clean, easy-to-use and powerful.Integrated gestures make it easier to summon the notifications and quick settings (particularly useful with the 7 Pro’s tall display), as well as activating features like the camera and the flashlight without ever having to wake the phone up.‘The Shelf’ is a dedicated space for iOS-like widget placement which keeps things tidy, and there’s a hidden ‘second space’ where you can place apps that you want to hide from prying eyes should you hand your phone to a friend. These are all pre-existing features, however.Notable new additions for the 7 Pro include an enhanced gaming mode that silences notifications and locks screen brightness down, or by enabling ‘fnatic mode’ the phone directs all CPU, GPU and memory usage to your current gaming session and nowhere else.The new Zen mode was born from the mindfulness practices of OnePlus’ senior staffers and takes a hard stance on pervasive phone checking by locking down everything, save for emergency calls, incoming calls and camera access, for 20 minutes at a time.Not even restarting or powering the phone off and back on can you escape out of this experience, so make sure that you’re ready for the break, before committing.The feature feels like OnePlus’ extension of Android Pie’s native digital wellbeing toolset and as with much of what makes the 7 Pro decidedly OnePlus, it’s an odd inclusion but one that I appreciate nonetheless.Should I buy the OnePlus 7 Pro?When I first took delivery of the OnePlus 7 Pro, I wasn’t told how much it would cost (that information came later), and I was a little worried.This phone is undoubtedly feature-packed, the richest the company has ever made, but its higher price warrants greater scrutiny. Previous OnePlus phones have always been pit against the flagships of the time but the comparative affordability they’ve offered has absolved them of any minor shortcomings that would otherwise have been met with disappointment or beratement.Even so, the OnePlus 7 Pro still undercuts the majority of the 2019 flagship pack (by several hundred pounds in some cases), meaning I can forgive the absence of features like (certified) water resistance and wireless charging – this phone will still leave you impressed (and with more money in your pocket).Related: Is the OnePlus 7 series water resistant?Where Huawei’s P30 Pro takes the cake for smartphone camera and battery ability, the OnePlus 7 Pro’s screen is easily one of the nicest I’ve clapped eyes on, plus OnePlus’ user experience is among the best skinned Android experiences you’ll find out there.The OnePlus 7 Pro shows that the company is able to grow, bring about meaningful changes and greater competition without losing what makes the brand and its devices so uniquely appealing.
Recommended For YouUPDATE 2-Mexican president thanks Trump for tariff comments as peso strengthensVodafone launches 5G in Britain with unlimited data plansRoll out of higher CPP costs expected to affect HR budgets for wages, benefitsEdibles, other pot products, will hit shelves after mid-December: OttawaThe storm is coming and investors need a financial ark to see them through Reddit Bloomberg News June 13, 201912:03 PM EDT Filed under News Retail & Marketing Tyson’s answer to fake meat craze: half-pea, half-beef burger The offerings expected to be ‘billion-dollar brand’ leading the space: CEO Twitter Aiming to satisfy demands of the so-called flexitarians, Tyson half-plant half-beef burger will have “fewer calories and less saturated fat” than other pure plant-based burgers, the company says. A Beyond Meat burger, above.Getty Images Email Tyson Foods Inc., the biggest U.S. meat processor, wants in on the veggie protein market that’s hot with consumers and investors alike.The meat giant is aiming to satisfy demands of the so-called flexitarians, a rapidly growing segment of people who eat meat but are cutting back and adding more vegetable-based protein to their diets. Tyson’s solution: a half-pea-protein, half-Angus-beef burger.In what could be the biggest foray into the burgeoning alternative protein market this year, Tyson said it will debut the hybrid meat-plant patties and a series of other related products this year in grocery stores as well as restaurants. CEO Noel White said he expects the offerings will become a “billion-dollar brand” and that the company will be a leader in the space. Pulse of the nation: How Beyond Meat could turn this humble pea into Canada’s new gold Why Beyond Meat’s euphoric investors should heed the lessons of Tilray Inside the battle being waged over Beyond Meat’s push to be found in the grocery store meat aisle The company is joining the scrum of companies rushing headlong into meat alternatives after Beyond Meat Inc.’s sizzling initial public offering in May left them playing catch up. Tyson sold its stake in the latter company just before the stunning equity debut. Beyond Meat shares are up more than five-fold since they started trading.Tyson produces a fifth of the U.S.’s chicken, beef and pork. More than 60 per cent of consumers are actively adding protein to their diets, and 75 per cent are open to including both meat and plant-based proteins, according to Noelle O’Mara, chief marketing officer at Tyson. For plant-based proteins specifically, 40 per cent of consumers want more in their diet.“We’ve confirmed that alternative protein is growing and that it makes sense for us to be a part of it,” O’Mara said.Tyson’s beef/plant hybrid burger, sold under the brand Raised & Rooted, is expected to reach consumers in the fall. Other new products the company plans to offer include sausages and meatballs made of a chicken/plant blend under the Aidells Whole Blends brand. The meat producer is also introducing a pure plant-based chicken nugget substitute, which will come to market this summer.We’re bringing forward an entire set of offerings across brands and channels that satisfy how consumers are eating today rather than one approach.Justin Whitmore, chief sustainability officer and head of alternative protein, Tyson Foods Tyson will be able to bring the products to market from the development stage in under a year, and the company didn’t need to make extra investments to produce them, said Justin Whitmore, chief sustainability officer and head of alternative protein.Whitmore declined to comment on price points, the size of investments, or provide any details on customers. The new products are coming to several major retailers where consumers regularly shop, he said. The blended burger and sausages are a noticeable shift away from that of the company’s purist vegan rivals, namely the Beyond and Impossible Burgers.“We’re bringing forward an entire set of offerings across brands and channels that satisfy how consumers are eating today rather than one approach,” he said.Tyson is making a health pitch as well with its new products. The hybrid burgers made of Angus beef and pea-protein isolate have fewer calories and less saturated fat than other pure plant-based burgers on the market, Whitmore said.The move also fits into the sustainability goals for the giant producer of beef, a protein that has long weathered attacks from environmentalists that say the industry contributes heavily to greenhouse gas emissions. Tyson recently pledged to reduce emissions by 30 per cent by 2030.“We care deeply about all proteins and what it takes to be as efficient as possible,” Whitmore said. “This fits in with our total story.”Bloomberg.com Lydia Mulvany and Leslie Patton 2 Comments Facebook More Comment Share this storyTyson’s answer to fake meat craze: half-pea, half-beef burger Tumblr Pinterest Google+ LinkedIn Join the conversation →
Source: Charge Forward Jackery (99% positive feedback from 56,000) via Amazon offers its 240Wh Portable Electric Generator for $239.99 shipped when promo code TBECALES is applied during checkout. That’s good for 20% off the regular going rate, $30 less than our previous mention and the best price available. This model can output 240Wh with dual 2.4A USB ports, AC and DC power and more. Perfect for charging drones, camping sites and more. Rated 4.5/5 stars. more…The post Green Deals: Jackery 240Wh Portable Electric Generator $240 (Reg. $300), more appeared first on Electrek.
Tesla Roadster Torque Questioned Engineering Analysis: Tesla Roadster Performance Specs Validated Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on December 10, 2018Categories Electric Vehicle News Tesla just released a new video from the reveal night for the new Roadster. Why now? We’re not entirely sure, but we aren’t complaining. What we are doing is enjoying the facial expressions and words of those few who were lucky enough to experience the Roadster’s launch.0 to 60 MPH in under 2 seconds is stupidly quick and the reactions from those onboard are equally insane.Take a look for yourself and let us know if you agree with our stupidly quick assessment.Video description:First test rides in the new Roadster.Tesla Roadster specs:7,376 pound-feet of torque0-60 mph in 1.9 seconds, making it the quickest production car in the world.0-100 mph in 4.2 seconds.Quarter mile in 8.8 seconds, which beats every other production car.250+ mph top speed.620 miles of highway range. Source: Electric Vehicle News There’s quick. Then there’s Tesla Roadster quick.The all-new, yet-to-be-released Tesla Roadster is bonkers. It’s so quick that it makes even the Tesla Model S P100D look comparatively slow.More Tesla Roadster Insanity Tesla Roadster To Get Performance-Boosting SpaceX Option Package
NIO Improves Pace To More Than 3,000 ES8 Sales Per Month Source: Electric Vehicle News NIO ES8 sales in China – December 2018William Li, founder, chairman and chief executive officer of NIO said: NIO ES6 Electric Crossover Specs, Images & Video From World Debut Author Liberty Access TechnologiesPosted on January 10, 2019Categories Electric Vehicle News NIO captured its niche and moves forwardChinese manufacturer NIO reports a record of 3,318 ES8 electric car sales in December. It will probably stay a record for a while as the first quarter brings seasonally lower demand in China.Anyway,s NIO delivered a total of 11,348 ES8 in 2018, which is slightly more than the goal.The ES8 7-seater will be joined by the NIO ES6 5-seater in June 2019, which should further highly increase NIO’s results.NIO Watch The NIO ES6 Livestream Here: Plus Specs & Pricing “With 11,348 ES8 deliveries in 2018, we exceeded our delivery goal for our first calendar year as a public company. 2018 has been a milestone year for us, as we produced and delivered over 11,000 ES8s and launched our second production car, the ES6, a 5-seater high-performance premium electric SUV on NIO Day in December 2018. We will continue to focus on market penetration by delivering high-quality products and holistic services to our users and to improve the system efficiency of our development and operations.”Louis T. Hsieh, NIO’s chief financial officer added :“We are pleased with the solid ramp-up in production and delivery in 2018, which demonstrated our execution capabilities. The delivery of 3,318 ES8s in December exceeded our expectation, which was in part due to accelerated deliveries made at the year end in anticipation of expected EV subsidy reductions in China in 2019. Despite an overall challenging automotive market and the seasonal low demand in the first quarter, we remain committed to expanding our sales network and strengthening our brand to support our future growth.”
The Arsenal manager, Arsène Wenger, last night expressed fresh concern over Tomas Rosicky’s injury, admitting he could give no guarantees as to when the midfielder will return to action. Rosicky has not played since limping off in Arsenal’s 3-0 FA Cup victory over Newcastle on January 26 with a hamstring tear.Wenger initially insisted the midfielder would return in “days, not weeks” but after it was discovered that the tendons in Rosicky’s leg had come loose from the hamstring – requiring an operation which forced him to miss Euro 2008 – the comeback date was put back to this month.Delays in the recovery process then saw the 27-year-old’s expected return shift to Christmas but he may now not return until next year. “We are a little bit speechless on [Rosicky’s injury] because we feel it is all going well but there is a problem of recoordinating his muscle with the exercises he does,” said Wenger. “Nobody at the club can tell me whether he will be back on November 10, December 10 or December 31. Nobody knows with him.” Share on Facebook Arsenal Topics Sachin Nakrani Fri 26 Sep 2008 19.01 EDT @SachinNakrani This article is more than 10 years old Share via Email Premier League Arsène Wenger This article is more than 10 years old Arsenal Rosicky injury mystery leaves Wenger speechless Shares00 Share on Twitter First published on Fri 26 Sep 2008 19.01 EDT news
Source:https://meeting.nutrition.org/ Jun 11 2018What we eat has important implications for our health-;and for what we spend on healthcare. New research suggests improving the quality of the average American’s diet could substantially reduce costs associated with heart disease, diabetes, cancer and other major health problems.The study is the first to comprehensively analyze the potential cost implications of improved adherence to healthy dietary patterns (as measured by the Healthy Eating Index (HEI) and the Mediterranean-style diet (MED) score) among US adults across major chronic disease types. Previous research has focused on specific populations or specific conditions, such as heart disease.”We found that increasing adherence to healthy dietary patterns by even 20 percent at a population level has the potential to save more than $20 billion in both direct and indirect costs associated with 10 major health outcomes,” said lead study author Dr. Carolyn Scrafford, senior managing scientist at Exponent, a scientific consulting firm. “That’s a significant saving from what we believe is a realistic shift in diet quality.”Scrafford will present the research at the American Society for Nutrition annual meeting during Nutrition 2018, held June 9-12, 2018 in Boston. The research project was funded by the National Dairy Council.Scrafford’s team estimated cost savings under two scenarios. The more conservative scenario looks at the savings that could be realized if US adults increased their adherence to a healthy dietary pattern by 20 percent, as measured by two metrics of diet quality: the Healthy Eating Index (HEI) and the Mediterranean-style diet (MED) score. The more ambitious scenario projects savings that could result if US adults achieved an 80 percent score on those same metrics.Both the HEI and the MED are markers of what are considered healthy dietary patterns. The HEI is used frequently in the US to evaluate a US-style diet and reflects adherence with the 2015-2020 Dietary Guidelines for Americans while the MED was first used to describe the diet of countries in the Mediterranean region and emphasizes components such as fish, nuts, and fruits, along with olive oil as a healthy fat source.The average US adult currently shows about 60 percent adherence to the HEI. If this were increased to 72 percent adherence (a relative increase of 20 percent), the analysis shows the US could save $30-47 billion in health-related costs annually. Under the more ambitious scenario, if the average US adult increased their adherence to 80 percent of the HEI, the researchers project an annual savings of $52-82 billion.Close to half of these savings result from a reduction in costs associated with heart disease alone, with additional savings from reductions in costs associated with cancer and type 2 diabetes. Because heart disease in the US is so prevalent, so costly and so heavily influenced by diet, a small improvement in diet quality can result in meaningful cost savings, researchers say.Related StoriesNew protein target for deadly ovarian cancerStudy reveals link between inflammatory diet and colorectal cancer riskMothers with gestational diabetes transferring harmful ‘forever chemicals’ to their fetusThe average US adult currently scores a 3.5 out of 9 possible points on the MED score used to assess adherence to the Mediterranean-style diet. If this adherence were raised by 20 percent, the researchers project an annual savings of about $21-26 billion. The lower estimate includes only breast, colorectal and prostate cancer along with five other health outcomes (coronary heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, hip fractures and Alzheimer’s disease) while the higher estimate includes savings related to all cancer types along with the same five other health outcomes. Annual savings could reach $112-135 billion if Americans increased their MED adherence to 80 percent by incorporating more components of the Mediterranean-style diet.”Our results suggest that it’s worthwhile to educate Americans on these dietary patterns and their components, to encourage them to make little changes to improve their diet quality,” said Scrafford.To estimate how the healthy US- and Mediterranean-style dietary patterns influence rates of disease among adults in the US, the researchers systematically analyzed the published scientific literature to identify recent meta-analyses assessing observed associations between specific chronic health outcomes and adherence as measured by the HEI or MED scores. They then used the data in those studies to model the expected increase or decrease in risk of the health outcomes among healthy US adults under modeled levels of adherence to these healthy dietary patterns.To estimate healthcare costs, the team used data from the American Heart Association, American Diabetes Association and National Cancer Institute of the National Institutes of Health, along with case reports tracking costs associated with hip fractures and Alzheimer’s disease. Cost estimates included both direct costs-;such as medical fees, devices and drugs-;and indirect costs, such as lost wages and caregiver burden, where available.While the research models hypothetical scenarios of increased adherence to healthy dietary patterns and it is unlikely that Americans could change their dietary patterns overnight or that the projected health improvements would immediately reduce health-related costs, the numbers provide a reference point for understanding the potential benefits of adopting a healthier diet, Scrafford said. The research was driven by the increasing understanding of the importance of overall dietary patterns rather than individual nutrients or foods.
Jul 6 2018Administering needle-based procedures in anesthesiology, such as epidurals, is a complex and delicate procedure and the current training methods for doctors are costly and fall short in preparing them for every patient and situation they will face.A new provisional patent from the Penn State College of Engineering plans to change that.The haptic-force needle-insertion simulator, created by a team of researchers led by Jason Moore, associate professor of mechanical engineering, is a low-cost, hand-held device that simulates the tactic feeling of the instrument passing through several layers of tissue. It also connects to a computer program that can assess the user’s performance.These factors are crucial because the doctor’s hands need to produce a steady rate of insertion, which can be challenging.”There’s a buildup of force upon tissue deflection and a sudden release of force upon tissue puncture,” Moore said. “This training tool can help surgeons, residents and med students improve their dexterous abilities.”Working in harmony, the tool and program interface will provide real-time feedback on the physician’s performance during training. This response is crucial to the device and represents a new efficiency and effectiveness of surgical training.Currently, the most effective way to train clinicians is to observe other doctors.”Those of us who teach these procedures find it very difficult to teach the needle, eye and image coordination skills,” said Sanjib Adhikary, associate professor of anesthesiology, Penn State Hershey and co-investigator of the project.Using the simulator, doctors will be better prepared for these procedures.”It can raise the ability of residents before they begin performing these procedures on patients,” Moore said. “It also gives them a very nice way to assess their performance and understand where improvements can be made.”Related StoriesComputers, games, crafting keep the aging brain sharpPatients taking opioids for chronic pain could face health care access problemsMany thyroid cancer patients have no choice about radioactive iodine, study revealsOther training methods, like using mannequins, are more expensive and do not account for the range of body types a doctor would encounter in their patients. This device is able to change its simulation based on these different scenarios, like varying skin thickness and excess body weight.”Being unprepared for diverse patient scenarios can increase the probability of complications occurring, and this training will help the doctor’s ability to adapt,” Moore said.Eventually, this tool could be adapted to train doctors in other specialties like emergency medicine, radiology and surgery.”This project has the potential to revolutionize training on surgical procedures,” said Scarlett Miller, associate professor of engineering design and industrial engineering, Penn State.The rest of the team is also confident their device will make an impact, especially as it represents a low-cost method to this common problem.”We’re really excited because the device is slated be relatively low cost, less than $100,” Moore said. “I would love to see this widely applied, all the way down to undergraduate pre-med programs. It could be impactful to easily assess this skill and provide meaningful feedback to allow for continuous improvement.”Moore, Adhikary and Miller recently received an ENGINE grant from the College of Engineering to commercialize the product.”This grant has really accelerated our work,” Moore said.The team hopes to test the device at Penn State Hershey and receive feedback from physicians next fall.”This project is in its infancy, but we hope it could follow the [central venous catheter] robot we worked on that is now a part of the surgical residency training curriculum at Hershey Medical Center,” Moore said.Miller added, “This project not only has the potential for commercial value, but also for helping save human lives.”Source: https://www.psu.edu
Source:https://www.augusta.edu/mcg/ Jul 9 2018In diabetes, both the tightly woven endothelial cells that line our blood vessels and the powerhouses that drive those cells start to come apart as early steps in the destruction of our vasculature.Now scientists have evidence that these breakups occur as another relationship falls apart.Levels of the enzyme PDIA1, which enables a healthy homeostasis of endothelial cells as well as production of new blood vessels, decrease in diabetes, while activity of Drp1, a key regulator of fission regulated by PDIA1, goes way up, Medical College of Georgia scientists report in the journal Cell Reports.The imbalance drives endothelial cells and their powerhouses apart, setting up a vicious cycle where too much reactive oxygen species, or ROS, gets made by the mitochondria, says Dr. Masuko Ushio-Fukai, vascular biologist in the Vascular Biology Center and Department of Medicine at MCG at Augusta University.Powerhouses further fragment, more Drp1 gets oxidized and activated and even more ROS gets produced, says the study’s corresponding author.”Fission induces fragmentation which induces more ROS which contributes to Drp1 oxidation,” says Ushio-Fukai of the mounting feedback loop.The biological glue that helps hold endothelial cells together begins to come apart and so do the previously tightly connected cells.”It’s very leaky and promotes inflammatory cells, like macrophages, to the endothelial cells which causes even more disruption,” Ushio-Fukai says.The discoveries provide new treatment targets for diseases associated with endothelial cell senescence, or aging, such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease and age-related disorders, the scientists report.Potential points of intervention include restoring a healthy balance of PDIA1 and Drp1 and/or reducing the high oxidative stress that throws off the balance in diabetes and other disease.”It’s clear that endothelial function is impaired in conditions like diabetes as well as aging,” Ushio-Fukai says. “If we can help restore the function of endothelial cells, we can help keep blood vessels more normal.”We know that some ROS is needed for a variety of body functions, but that high levels are associated with aging throughout the body. Inside our endothelial cells, the mitochondria, known for producing the cell fuel ATP, actually primarily produce ROS – mainly superoxide and hydrogen peroxide – as fuel and ROS in turn helps fuel mitochondria.Much like a high performance versus lower performing car, ROS is sufficient to keep the normally quiescent cells that line our blood vessels functioning, versus our heart muscle cells, for example, which need a lot of the high-test ATP, Ushio-Fukai says.In fact, normal levels of ROS actually activate PDIA1 and are a signaling molecule for angiogenesis, the formation of new blood vessels.Related StoriesMothers with gestational diabetes transferring harmful ‘forever chemicals’ to their fetusDiabetes medications mask euglycemic ketoacidosis at the time of surgeryDon’t Miss the Blood-Brain Barrier Drug Delivery (B3DD) Summit this AugustBut the MCG scientists have shown that the high ROS levels in diabetes instead decrease activity of PDIA1, which impairs angiogenesis. In this high oxidative-stress environ, with its regulator turned down, oxidation and activity of Drp1 go up, Ushio-Fukai says.The imbalance sets in motion other unhealthy events that include the mitochondria literally coming apart – rather than undergoing the normal fission and fusion – which results in even more ROS production and that vicious cycle.When the scientists knocked out PDIA1 in endothelial cells isolated from human blood vessels, they found more evidence that the protein is required to maintain endothelial cell function. The endothelial cells started looking and acting older. There was less cell growth and proliferation as well as impaired angiogenesis and ability to dilate.When they looked at whether PDIA1 regulates ROS levels in endothelial cells, they found that the loss of PDIA1 induces both a slight increase inside the endothelial cells and mitochondrial dysfunction, including significantly increasing the amount of ROS produced by mitochondria. Mitochondria, which are typically in constant state of fission and fusion, only fragment without PDIA1 in their endothelial cells.They showed that PDIA1 appears to have a direct role in regulating the fission action of Drp1 and were able to rescue the cells from excessive mitochondrial fragmentation by delivering more PDIA1 directly to the cells and to their mitochondria. Looking again at the relationship between PDIA1 and Drp1, they saw a significant increase in Drp1 when they silenced PDIA1 in endothelial cells. A Drp1 inhibitor, in turn, silenced the expected mitochondrial fragmentation, related endothelial cell senescence and the impaired ability to form capillaries.Wound healing is a big problem in diabetes, to some extent at least because of impaired angiogenesis, so they also looked in a mouse model of wound healing with type 2 diabetes. PDIA1 expression was markedly downregulated in the skin compared with healthy mice. When they transferred normal PDIA1 to the vascular endothelial cells in the diabetic mice, it rescued normal protein levels and wound healing. Wound healing was also impaired in mice missing PDIA1 and, once again, restoring the normal protein normalized wound healing.”We showed that impaired wound healing in diabetic mice can be restored by treatment of endothelial cell senescence,” Ushio-Fukai says.Next steps include developing a clinical grade Drp1 inhibitor. The MCG scientists also are looking at delivery systems for PDIA1, including use of biological packages called exosomes, which cells use to communicate and swap contents.Healthy endothelial cells also produce nitric oxide, a key vasodilator of blood vessels.