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About 12 million U.S. outpatients misdiagnosed annually : study

By Curtis Skinner (Reuters) - Roughly 12 million adults who visit U.S. doctors' offices and other outpatient settings, or one in 20, are misdiagnosed every year, a new study has found, and half of those errors could lead to serious harm. The study by a team of Texas-based researchers attempted to estimate how often diagnostic errors occur in outpatient settings such as doctors' offices and clinics, as exact figures don't exist. The team's study will be published this month in the British medical journal BMJ Quality & Safety.

Long-term care: Why your location really matters

By Mark Miller CHICAGO (Reuters) - Location, location location: Not only is it key to the value of real estate, it's also a big driver of the cost of long-term care. A study of long-term care costs in the United States released this week shows that the cost of long-term services and support varies dramatically by location. For example, the national median cost of a private nursing home this year is $87,600 - but it's $155,125 in Connecticut, $87,180 in Ohio and $57,487 in Oklahoma.

In a cloning first, scientists create stem cells from adults

By Sharon Begley NEW YORK (Reuters) - Scientists have moved a step closer to the goal of creating stem cells perfectly matched to a patient's DNA in order to treat diseases, they announced on Thursday, creating patient-specific cell lines out of the skin cells of two adult men.

West African Ebola outbreak caused by new strain of disease: study

By Saliou Samb CONAKRY (Reuters) - An Ebola outbreak blamed for 135 deaths in West Africa in the past month was not imported from Central Africa but caused by a new strain of the disease, a study in a U.S. medical journal said, raising the specter of further regional epidemics. The spread of Ebola from a remote corner of Guinea to the capital and into neighboring Liberia, the first deadly outbreak reported in West Africa, has caused panic across a region struggling with weak healthcare systems and porous borders.

GE industrial profit boost underscores strategy, shares up

By Lewis Krauskopf and Ernest Scheyder (Reuters) - General Electric Co <GE.N> posted a 12 percent rise in overall industrial profits on Thursday, as strength in its businesses selling gas turbines, jet engines and oil industry equipment offset weakness in healthcare and transportation. GE, which is increasingly focusing on its traditional manufacturing businesses over its finance unit, posted an 8 percent increase in industrial revenue, even as overall company revenue fell slightly short of Wall Street's target.

Drug watchdog urges vigilance in cancer drug theft

Europe's medicine watchdog urged doctors Thursday to be vigilant in administering the cancer drug Herceptin, vials of which had been stolen in Italy and tampered with before being sold back into the supply chain. Vials of the drug had been stolen from Italian hospitals in several incidents since last December, and some were tampered with before being resold to wholesalers, said the European Medicines Agency.

US to send 'non-lethal' military aid to Ukraine

The United States will send helmets, medical supplies and other non-lethal military assistance to Ukraine amid fears of another Russian incursion there, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Thursday. Hagel said he had informed Kiev that President Barack Obama "has approved additional non-lethal military assistance for health and welfare items and other supplies."

UnitedHealth's 1st-quarter profit tumbles 8 per cent, insurer cites overhaul costs

UnitedHealth Group's first-quarter net income slid 8 per cent as funding cuts to a key product and costs imposed by the health care overhaul dented the health insurer's performance. The Minnetonka, Minn., company said Thursday the overhaul and government budget cuts added about 35 cents per share in costs during the quarter. The federal law aims to provide coverage for millions of uninsured people, but it also trims funding for Medicare Advantage plans, changes how insurers can write their coverage and adds an industry-wide tax, which is not deductible.

Obama launches measures to support solar energy in US

The White House Thursday announced a series of measures aimed at increasing solar energy production in the United States, particularly by encouraging the installation of solar panels in public spaces. President Barack Obama and his Democratic allies in Congress want laws to fight climate change and reduce greenhouse gas emissions, but Republicans, who hold the majority in the House of Representatives, have blocked all legislative efforts since 2011.

Philip Morris Int'l 1Q profit down 12 pct on lower cigarette sales, unfavourable exchange rates

RICHMOND, Va. - Philip Morris International's first-quarter profit dropped nearly 12 per cent as cigarette sales fell in the overseas markets that it serves and it was hurt by foreign exchange rates for the U.S. dollar. While adjusted earnings topped Wall Street expectations, shares fell almost 3 per cent in early trading. The seller of Marlboro and other cigarette brands outside the United States earned $1.88 billion, or $1.18 per share, in the January-March quarter, down from $2.13 billion, or $1.28 per share, a year ago.
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