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    Aging Baby Boomers To Increase Demand For Doctors

    Fewer doctors entering geriatrics at a time when need is rising



    January 2011 marks a significant milestone for the Baby Boomers generation when its first members - born in 1946 - begin the year in which they will celebrate their 65th birthdays.

    The boomers transition into the years that traditionally denote the beginning of senior citizenship also draws attention to the graying of America.

    Stephen G. Jones, MD, a geriatrician and expert in gerontology and director of the Center for Healthy Aging at Greenwich Hospital in Greenwich, Connecticut, says the impact these so-called Geri-Boomers will have on American health care will be significant on numerous fronts.

    It is wonderful news that we are living longer, but it also creates an entirely new set of challenges for families and the health care system, Jones said. The face of medicine is going to start to change rapidly because of this transition. While the leading cause of death in America 100 years ago was infection, now true diseases of aging - cancer, heart disease and Alzheimers disease - are the leading causes.

    One of the forthcoming issues, according to Jones, will be the shortage of doctors trained to care for an aging population. Geriatrics, the sub-specialty that focuses on the specific health needs of the elderly, is facing an acute shortage of physicians.

    Low reimbursement rates

    Low insurance reimbursements rates for the care they provide and other factors have reduced the ranks of doctors seeking Geriatrics training. In 2007 only 91 American-trained doctors sought specialty in Geriatrics compared to 167 in 2003 and spots in many fellowship programs were not filled.

    Who will care for this population? While the care burden, in many instances, falls on the shoulders of primary care physicians, they, too, are facing similar challenges to keep their practices solvent and viable, Jones says.

    Jones says several factors are adding to the challenge:

    • Boomers will number 70 million by 2030, making them the oldest generation of seniors in history. The children of Geri-Boomers will struggle to manage care for multiple generations in their families. Rather than the sandwich generation, which refers to adults caring for both their parents and their children, Dr. Jones refers to the Club Sandwich Generation, as more adult children will be faced with the responsibilities of caring for their parents and sometimes grandchildren.

    • Longevity is advancing faster than our ability to keep up with the diseases of aging. Arthritis, orthopedic problems and chronic illnesses will increasingly burden the population and the health care system.

    • Alzheimers disease, which impacted about 4.5 million Americans in 2000, will more than double in incidence by the year 2030 and is likely to reach epidemic proportions by 2050. To put this illness in perspective: A new case is diagnosed every 71 seconds and one out of eight Americans 65 and older will be diagnosed. The statistics are more staggering for those 85 and older where one out of two seniors in this age range faces a possible diagnosis.

    • Seniors age 85 and older are predominately female, raising new issues for women who will spend their later years widowed or single.

    Aging Baby Boomers To IncreaseDemand For Doctors...
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    Health Savings Accounts (HSA) Don't Work For Everyone

    Economists also worry they may inadvertently drive up costs for conventional plans


    As health insurance costs skyrocket, more consumers are opting for high-deductible plans. Policyholders pay more of their medical expenses themselves but have significantly lower monthly premiums.

    While that's an increasingly attractive option, some health care economists say it doesn't work for everyone. It's great, they say, if you're in good health. Not so great otherwise.

    According to a study at the University of Pittsburgh, healthier people are more likely to select a high-deductible health plan featuring a tax-free Health Savings Account (HSA) over a conventional plan. The authors of the study based their research on data from several employers that first offered the option in 2006.

    People who are sick or have an ill family member are less likely to choose an HSA-eligible plan, according to the study. The lower the level of a patient's education the more likely they were to stick with a more conventional policy.

    People who benefit already doing well

    Our findings support the concern that the people who are most likely to benefit [from HSA-eligible plans] are those who are already better off in society, said lead author Judith Lave, Ph.D., a health economist at the University of Pittsburgh.

    The authors analyzed data from nine large employers in western Pennsylvania as they introduced HSA-eligible plans. More than 50,000 employees chose between the new offering and a preferred provider organization (PPO) during the two years studied. The report appears online in the journal Health Services Research.

    A growing number of employers have been offering HSA-eligible plans since Congress first defined them in 2003. About 10 million Americans are in such plans currently, according to the Employee Benefit Research Institute (EBRI) in Washington, D.C.

    Proponents believe that the new plans can be more affordable for consumers, since higher deductibles mean lower premiums, according to the authors. Furthermore, they contend that people will use services more judiciously if they are more aware of costs. However, critics argue that if many healthier people switch to high-deductible plans, costs might rise for those remaining in conventional plans.

    We may be just redistributing the costs between the sick and the well, Lave said.

    Attract healthier people

    Researchers are finding that in a choice environment, HSA-eligible plans do attract healthier people, said Paul Fronstin, Ph.D., of EBRI. Employers and insurance companies can take that information and modify their plans to account for it.

    Employers have been experimenting with plan design for years in hopes of reducing overall health costs without reducing benefits, Fronstin said. With the new data, they could adjust deductibles, maximum out-of-pocket expenses or employer HSA contributions to steer more people toward the high-deductible plans.

    Fronstin and Lave agree that the jury is still out on whether these plans can provide the solution employers are seeking.

    We need better analyses of these plans with respect to overall health care spending, Lave said.



    Health Savings Accounts (HSA) Don't Work For Everyone...
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    Burlington Coat Factory Recalls Hooded Jackets, Sweatshirts


    Burlington Coat Factory is recalling about 10,000 hooded jackets and sweatshirts because they have drawstrings through the hood or waist which can pose a strangulation or entrapment hazard to children.

    Based on available records, the following items are included in this recall.

    Brand NameDescriptionColorSize
    AeropostaleBoys' pullover
    sweatshirt with
    Aeropostale printed
    on front
    BrownBoys' size Small
    Apple BottomGirls' zippered velvet
    jacket with "Apple Bottom"
    embroidered on back
    BrownGirls' size 7 - 16
    Deere ParkBoys' zippered jacketsRed and BlueBoys' sizes
    Disney Winnie
    the Pooh
    Zippered jackets with a
    picture of Winnie the Pooh
    on the front of the jacket
    Blue with white sleeves
    with green and blue
    stripes on the sleeves
    2T, 3T, 4T
    Gray WolfZippered jacket with
    Grey Wolf tag inside
    jacket and drawstring waist
    Dark Blue13 - 14
    Jonathon StoneZippered jacket with "55"
    printed on front. "J.stone"
    is printed on tag on back
    of neck of the garment
    Blue, red and whiteL
    Kani Gold
    (sold from 10/24/2008)
    Boys' zippered
    sweatshirt
    Brown, black and greyYouth L (16/18)
    MilettaZippered JacketsBlack with faux fur
    cuffs and hood
    Medium (9 - 10)
    MirikaGirls' zippered sweatshirts
    with embroidery on sleeves
    RedMedium
    New YorkGirls' zippered
    sleeveless Sweatshirt
    with "33 New York"
    embroidered on jacket
    Light BlueSmall
    Ruff Stuff
    (Date approx. 1995)
    Boys' zipper and
    snap close jackets
    Blue and light blueSize 14 - 16
    Sergio Benini
    (Sept 2007)
    Zippered heavy jackets
    with snaps
    BrownMedium

    The clothing was manufactured in China, Cambodia, Korea, and United States and was sold at Burlington Coat Factory and other retailers nationwide from January 1995 through September 2009 for between $7 and $30.

    Consumers should immediately remove the drawstrings from the sweatshirts to eliminate the hazard or return the garment to Burlington Coat Factory for a full refund or credit.

    For additional information, contact Burlington Coat Factory toll-free at (888) 223-2628 between 8:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or visit the firm's website at www.burlingtoncoatfactory.com







































































    The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

    Burlington Coat Factory Recalls Hooded Jackets, Sweatshirts...
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      Forest Pharmaceuticals To Plead Guilty To Violating FDA Laws

      Company sold unapproved and misbranded drugs and obstructed agency investigation


      Forest Pharmaceuticals, Inc. has cut a deal with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and the U.S. Department of Justice (USDOJ to accept responsibility for criminal actions including distribution of an unapproved new drug, distribution of a misbranded drug and obstruction of an FDA inspection.

      To resolve these charges and a related civil suit, the company will pay more than $300 million, including $164 million in criminal penalties. The deal follows a multiyear investigation conducted by FDA's Office of Criminal Investigations in cooperation with its law enforcement partners and the U.S. Attorney's Office for the District of Massachusetts.

      Marketing charges

      Charges against Forest are primarily for its marketing of Levothroid (levothyroxine sodium tablets, USP) -- an unapproved drug used for the treatment of hypothyroidism. A 1997 Federal Register notice announced that these products are considered "new drugs" within the meaning of the Federal Food Drug and Cosmetic Act (FDCA) and that manufacturers who wished to continue marketing these products must obtain approved applications from the FDA by August 2000.

      Because levothyroxine was considered a medically necessary product, the FDA permitted a gradual phase-out with all distribution of unapproved levothyroxine sodium drug products to cease no later than August 2003.

      Forest Pharmaceuticals did not obtain drug approval, increased its distribution of Levothroid rather than scaling down, and ignored a subsequent Warning Letter to stop the manufacture and distribution of Levothroid.

      "These charges should serve as a warning to industry that the FDA takes seriously its role to protect the public from unapproved drugs," said Deborah M. Autor, director of the Office of Compliance in FDA's Center for Drug Evaluation and Research. "Any company that operates in violation of the FDCA and ignores FDA's warnings should be aware that a criminal action could follow."

      Misbranding

      The firm also is charged with distribution of a misbranded drug for its off-label promotion of Celexa for pediatric use when it was approved only for use in adults. Celexa is the brand name for the prescription drug citalopram, a selective serotonin reuptake inhibitor (SSRI) drug for the treatment of adult depression. In addition, Forest is charged with obstructing an agency proceeding because of false statements made by its employees during a 2003 FDA inspection.

      Under the terms of the plea agreement, Forest Pharmaceuticals, Inc. will plead guilty to all three counts and pay criminal penalties totaling $164 million. DOJ also announced that Forest and its parent company, Forest Laboratories, Inc., have agreed to pay $149 million and to enter into a Corporate Integrity Agreement with the Office of Inspector General of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in order to resolve a related civil complaint.

      Consumers should be aware that the Levothroid product currently marketed by Forest Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is not the subject of these actions. Forest Pharmaceutical's guilty plea and criminal penalties relate to the marketing of the previously unapproved Levothroid product. The current Levothroid product now has an approved New Drug Application and is compliant with FDA regulations.



      Forest Pharmaceuticals To Plead Guilty To Violating FDA Laws...
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      Can Swimming Pools Cause Cancer?

      Excessive chlorine in the water can damage DNA, researchers warn


      Chlorine is added to swimming pools to kill bacteria, but Spanish researchers say the chemical in large quantities can cause DNA damage that could increase the risk of cancer.

      Their study is published in Environmental Health Perspectives (EHP) journal, coordinated by researchers from the Centre for Research in Environmental Epidemiology (CREAL) and the Research Institute Hospital del Mar.

      The evidence of DNA damage, known as genotoxic effects, was observed in 49 healthy adults after they spent 40 minutes in a chlorinated indoor pool. Specifically, researchers found increased levels of two biomarkers of genotoxicity in relation to the concentration of the most common types of DBPs in exhaled breath after swimming.

      The observed biomarkers include micronuclei, a biomarker that indicates the type of DNA damage levels, a biomarker of cancer risk predictor in healthy subjects, and a biomarker of exposure to genotoxic agents.

      Despite these results, the co-director of CREAL, Manolis Kogevinas, says swimming in chlorinated water is still safer than swimming in water without it. He says pools should just have less of it.

      Just cut back on the chlorine

      "The positive health impacts of swimming can be increased by reducing the levels of these chemicals," Kogevinas said. "In no case we want to stop swimming but to encourage the reduction of chemicals in swimming pools to ensure disinfection of the same."

      In fact, he says reducing the levels of disinfection by-products (DBPs) can be achieved rigorously applying measures such as showering before swimming, bathing cap, avoid urinating in the pool and perform proper maintenance.

      The DBPs formed in the pools are the result of the reactions appeared between the water disinfectants such as chlorine pools and organic matter, which occurs naturally or is introduced by swimmers through sweat, skin cells and urine.

      Previous studies found an association between exposure to DBPs of drinking water and bladder cancer risk. Specifically, one such report, coordinated by the CREAL, concluded that this association was given by skin and inhalation exposure as occurs during showering, bathing or swimming.



      Chlorine is added to swimming pools to kill bacteria, but Spanish researchers say the chemical in large quantities can cause DNA damage that could increase...
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      Giant Starbuilder Sets Recalled by Edushape

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      Giant Starbuilders and Giant Stars Building Sets are being recalled by Edushape. Plastic knobs can break from the center of the star, posing a choking hazard to young children.

      CPSC and Edushape have received three reports of knobs breaking off from the center of the star. No injuries have been reported.

      This recall involves all Giant Starbuilders and Giant Stars building sets. The giant stars measure 5-inches in diameter and are made of opaque plastic. Each star has six knobs protruding from a ring-shaped center. The Giant Starbuilder set contains red, green, yellow and blue stars. The Giant Star building set contains red, green, yellow, blue, orange and pink stars.

      The sets, made in China, were sold at small retail stores nationwide and online at Target.com, Toys R Us.com, Amazon.com and CSN through Walmart Marketplace from January 2007 through May 2010 for between $25 and $35.

      Consumers should immediately take the recalled star blocks away from children and contact Edushape for a replacement set or credit towards another Edushape product of equal or lesser value.

      For additional information, contact Edushape at (800) 404-4744 between 9:00 a.m. and 4:00 p.m. ET Monday through Friday, or visit the firms website at www.edushape.com.

      The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

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      Giant Starbuilder Sets Recalled by Edushape...
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      Chuck E. Cheese's Recalls More Than 1 Million Toys

      CPSC says the recalled items pose a hazard to children


      Chuck E. Cheese's is recalling more than one million light-up rings and toy glasses because of concerns that children could swallow a small battery inside the playthings.

      The national restaurant chain voluntarily pulled off the market approximately 1,100,000 light-up rings and 120,000 toy star glasses, according to the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

      Swallowing hazard

      The plastic casing on the Chinese-made toys can break into small pieces if crushed or pulled apart and possibly expose the batteries, federal regulators warned. If swallowed, the batteries could damage a child's stomach, intestine, esophagus, or nasal mucus membrane.

      CPSC said it has received two reports of injuries linked to the light-up rings. One incident involved a child who swallowed the battery. The second involved a child who inserted the battery into his nostrils. There are no reports of injuries associated with the star glasses, the agency said.

      Chuck E. Cheese's distributed the light-up rings from April 2009 through June 2010 as promotional items or during parent-teacher association conventions. The plastic rings came in several colors, are 1 1/8 inches across, and have a black elastic band.

      The restaurant chain put the red translucent plastic star glasses in its birthday packages from April through August of 2010. The glasses are about 5 1/2 inches across, 2 1/2 inches tall, and have the words Chuck E. Cheese's painted on the side.

      Return process

      CPSC advises consumers to take the recalled toys away from children immediately and return them to any Chuck E. Cheese's restaurant. The company will give consumers a $1 refund plus four game tokens or a Soccer Promo-Cup plus four tokens for the light-up rings. Consumers who return the star glasses can either receive a $4.99 refund or a Flashing Hands prize.

      For more information, consumers may contact Chuck E. Cheese's at (888) 778-7193 or send the company an e-mail at guestrelations@cecentertainment.com.

      The CPSC is encouraging consumers to report any problems they've experienced with these recalled toys to the agency.

      Chuck E. Cheese's Recalls More Than 1 Million Toys...
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      Fall Weather Is Prime Time for Household Mold

      Mold can cause serious health problems if allowed to grow indoors


      With autumn approaching, mold spores that have grown and prospered in the summer humidity are wafting along on the breeze, just waiting to be trapped inside your home as you close windows and vents in preparation for cooler weather.

      We know to check the batteries in our smoke detectors, to change our air filters, to clean out our gutters and rake our leaves, but no one talks to homeowners about the dangers of household mold, says Jeff Dudan, CEO and founder of AdvantaClean, a mold remediation.

      Mold is further evidence that not everything that's "natural" is good for us. In fact, common household molds can cause asthma, sneezing, runny nose, red eyes and skin rashes. Infants and the elderly are most the at risk, because they often have weaker immune systems.

      The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has estimated that the air inside the average American home can be more than 100 times more polluted than the air outside. New homes usually have poorer air quality than older homes because theyre air-tight, so spores cant escape, providing a perfect breeding ground.

      Mold requires moisture to grow, so reducing moisture in your home will reduce mold growth. Common moisture-reduction practices include:

      • Use air conditioners and dehumidifiers regularly.
      • Keep relative indoor humidity low, if possible below 60 percent. Humidity is measured most accurately with a moisture meter, a small $10 - $50 instrument found at most hardware stores.
      • Run the bathroom fan or open the window when showering and up to 10 minutes afterward.
      • Use exhaust fans or open widows whenever cooking, running the dishwasher or even washing dishes.
      • When water leaks, act quickly. If you dry wet materials 2448 hours after a leak or spill, mold will not grow in most cases.
      • Clean and repair roof gutters and leaky roofs regularly.
      • Point sprinklers away from the home and siding.
      • Make sure landscapes slope away from your homes foundation so water doesnt collect.

      Where it grows

      Not surprisingly, mold grows most readily in moist, dark places -- windowsills, closets, wall paper, flooring, in or around showers, dishwashers, washing machines, and even in the soil of potted plants.

      Mold can be caused by slow dripping pipes, condensation, standing water on or under carpets and floor boards, leaky dryer vents, broken shingles and wet insulation.

      Symptoms

      People who are sensitive to mold may experience stuffy nose, irritated eyes, wheezing, or skin irritation. People allergic to mold may have difficulty in breathing and shortness of breath. People with weakened immune systems and with chronic lung diseases, such as obstructive lung disease, may develop mold infections in their lungs, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

      If you or your family members have health problems after exposure to mold, contact your doctor.

      You can recognize mold both by sight and smell.

      • By sight -- Are the walls and ceiling discolored, or do they show signs of mold growth or water damage?
      • By smell -- Do you smell a bad odor, such as a musty, earthy smell or a foul stench?

      Mold is further evidence that not everything that's "natural" is good for us. In fact, common household molds can cause asthma, sneezing, runny nose, red e...
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      New Devices Claim to Freeze and Zap Fat Away

      R2D2 look-alikes wage holy war on bulges, flab and fat

      Not too long, those who were a little too tubby subjected themselves to steam baths and "exercise" machines that basically jiggled their fat around. As technology advanced, the weight-averse turned to a mystifying array of exercises, drugs, potions, liposuction and even surgery.

      But the War Against Fat is entering a new phase with the introduction of two new high-tech techniques. One of them freezes fat cells, causing them to shrivel up and die, we're told, while the other basically blasts away fat with laser beams, radio waves and ultrasound.

      Sounds like a late-night infomercial? Perhaps, but no less a skeptic than the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recently approved devices using these techniques for "body contouring" purposes in doctors' offices. That doesn't mean they'll be coming to the neighborhood tanning salon next week, but no one's taking any bets.

      Zeltiq

      Perhaps the device that's farthest along is manufactured by Zeltiq. It calls its technique "Cryolipolysis" and, yes, that's "cryo" as in freezing. To put it bluntly, Zeltiq claims to freeze out your fat cells over a period of a few months.

      Currently FDA-approved only for skin cooling and anesthetic uses in the U.S., Zeltiq is already being used in Europe and Canada for fat reduction.

      As Zeltiq explains its "coolsculpting" procedure, a dermatologist or plastic surgeon uses vacuum pressure to draw the offending tissue into a cup, where it is cooled down for ten minutes or so. A few days later, the cooled fat cells begin a process called "apoptosis" and begin to shrink, Zeltiq's adherents claim.

      Although oversimplifying slightly, the procedure is said to be somewhat similar to the freezing nitrogen the dermatologist sprays on your face to remove sun-damaged tissues before they turn cancerous.

      "The best candidate for Zeltiq is someone who is in relatively good shape, but has modest areas of fat bulges that theyd like removed. Its not an alternative to healthy diet or lifestyle," cautions Dr. Lori A. Brightman, a New York plastic surgeon writing on www.body-contouring.com.

      "Coolsculpting is highly effective and is producing consistent results for local areas of fat like the love-handles or man-boobs, though larger areas of fat may require more invasive treatments," Brightman notes.

      Zerona

      And then there's the Zerona, which blasts fat away instead of freezing it, using what's called "low-level laser technology" to emulsify fat tissue, in effect making it smaller.

      Manufactured by Erchonia Corp., the Zerona is said to be "the first non-invasive aesthetic device to receive FDA market clearance in the U.S. for circumferential reduction of the waist, hips, and thighs."

      The problem with fat cells, simply put, is that they tend to grow. They're capable of expanding to at least 64 times their originial size. That was good when we lived as nomads and couldn't count on getting three meals a day. But in a population that's basically overfed and underworked, it can cause problems, big problems.

      The Zerona comes to the rescue by targeting fat cells and forcing them to collapse.

      "Zerona is scientifically-proven to be both safe and effective, and this most recent FDA clearance simply validates the research supporting this application, says Charlie Shanks, vice president of Erchonia. Zeronas FDA clearance makes it even more unique in the marketplace and we are excited to continue the momentum with a new, integrated marketing campaign.

      So are either of these rather intimidating-sounding procedures right for you? The only way to find out is to have a talk with your doctor who, if he or she approves, will help you find a specialist who'll freeze or blast your fat for you.

      But before you do that, you might also want to find a Registered Dietitian (R.D.), preferably one with a Ph.D. Dietitians are that rarity -- someone who actually knows a lot about how the body processes food and who can work with you to tailor an individual dietary plan that might actually accomplish something. You can find an online directory of dietitians at eatright.org.

      Not too long, those who were a little too tubby subjected themselves to steam baths and "exercise" machines that basically jiggled their fat around....
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      Horizon Hobby Recalls Spektrum Receivers Used with Model Airplane Gliders

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      Horizon Hobby is recalling about 3,500 Spektrum receivers used with model airplane gliders. The receiver can lose contact with the model airplane glider's radio control while within normal radio range limits. If this happens, the glider can fall from the sky and hit consumers, posing a risk of injury.

      This recall involves Spektrum AR6250 receivers designed for use with carbon fiber model gliders. Model number AR6250 can be found on the back of the packaging and on the front and back of the receiver. "Spektrum" is printed on the front of the receiver.

      The devices were sold by Horizon Hobby direct sales representatives nationwide and Canada from March 2009 through May 2010 for about $105.

      Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled receivers and contact Horizon Hobby for information on receiving a free replacement receiver.

      For additional information, contact Horizon Hobby toll-free at (877) 504-0233 between 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. CT Monday through Saturday, between 12 noon and 7 p.m. CT Sunday, or by mail at 4105 Fieldstone Road, Champaign, Ill. 61822. Consumers can also visit the firm's website at www.horizonhobby.com.

      The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

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      Horizon Hobby Recalls Spektrum Receivers Used with Model Airplane Gliders...
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      Fun Stuff Recalls Bracelets, Klick Balls, BoBo Balls

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      Fun Stuff Inc. is recalling about 36,000 children's toys, including Click Armband Bracelets, Klick Klick Balls and BoBo Balls.

      The small balls on the end of the toy's arms can detach, posing a choking hazard to young children. The toys were marketed for children age 3 and over. CPSC staff has designated these toys for children between the ages of 19 to 35 months.

      There has been one report of a ball detaching in a 21-month old girl's mouth in Charlotte, N.C. No medical treatment was required.

      The recalled bracelets and balls are made of stretchy, rubber material with hard plastic, colorful balls attached at the end of the toy's arms. The toys were sold with orange, green, pink, purple and blue colored balls. The BoBo balls have a flashing lighted ball encased in the stretchy material. The following item numbers are involved in this recall:

      ToyItem Number
      Click Armband BraceletFS1842
      Klick Klick BallFS1734
      BoBo BallFS1814

      The item number is located on the product packaging.

      The toys, made in China, were sold at beach resort stores nationwide from January 2009 through August 2010 for between $2 and $5.

      Consumers should immediately take the recalled toys away from young children and return them to the place of purchase or contact Fun Stuff to receive a full refund.

      For additional information, contact Fun Stuff toll-free at (888) 386-7833 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or visit the firm's website at www.funstuffinc.net

      The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

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      Fun Stuff Recalls Bracelets, Klick Balls, BoBo Balls...
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      Albee Baby Recalls Sorelle 'Prescott' Cribs

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      Albee Baby is recalling Sorelle Brand "Prescott" cribs because they present entrapment, suffocation and fall hazards to babies.

      These cribs are re-labeled fixed-sided Simplicity cribs that contain tubular metal mattress-support frames recalled in April 2010. The mattress support frames can bend or detach, causing part of the mattress to drop, creating a space into which an infant or toddler can roll and become wedged, entrapped or fall out of the crib.

      In the April 2010 Simplicity recall, CPSC reported the death of a one-year-old child from Attleboro, Mass. who suffocated when he became entrapped between the crib mattress and the crib frame. In addition, CPSC has received reports of 29 incidents involving the Simplicity cribs where the cribs collapsed due to the metal mattress support frame detaching or bending.


      These include one child entrapment that did not result in injury and one child who suffered minor cuts when his head struck the broken mattress support bar. CPSC has received one report of a consumer who, in April of 2010, removed the Sorelle Prescott label from the crib and found a Simplicity crib label underneath. (The consumer purchased the crib in July of 2009, prior to the Simplicity mattress support recall.)

      These are full-sized fixed-sided cribs sold in an oak finish, as 3-in-1 or 4-in-1 convertible cribs. "Sorelle Furniture" along with the company's address, the crib's model number and a manufacturer's code are printed on a label attached to the headboard or footboard.

      This recall is limited to Sorelle "Prescott" cribs sold online by AlbeeBaby.com between July 2009 and October 2009 for between $180 and $210. The dribs were made in China.

      Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled cribs and contact Albee Baby for a replacement crib, store credit or refund. C&T International/Albee Baby is attempting to directly contact known consumers who purchased the recalled crib online from July 2009 through October 2009. In the meantime, find an alternate, age appropriate, safe sleeping environment for the child, such as a bassinet, play yard or toddler bed.

      For additional information, contact Albee Baby toll-free at (877) 692-5233 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or visit the firm's website at www.albeebaby.com.

      Important Message from CPSC:

      The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

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      Albee Baby Recalls Sorelle 'Prescott' Cribs...
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      Coleman Company Recalls Water-Activated Spotlights

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      The Coleman Company is recalling about 50,000 WaterBeam 4D water-activated spotlights. The lens assembly can come apart from the main housing of the spotlight with force and pose a risk of impact injuries to consumers.

      Coleman has received 33 reports of the lens assembly coming apart, 18 of which resulted in reports of impact injuries such as bruising, lacerations and minor burns.

      The recalled spotlights are Coleman water-activated hand-held spotlights, model number 5338-782 (orange) UPC 76501 222733, model number 5338-792 (yellow) UPC 76501 222753 and model number 2000000153 (blue/white) UPC 76501 226683. A white label is affixed to the inside of the spotlight lens with the model number and production date information printed on the label.

      The spotlights, made in China, were sold at various sporting good stores and retail outlets nationwide from January 2005 through June 2010 for between about $20 and $25.

      Consumers should immediately remove the batteries and stop using the spotlights. Visit www.coleman.com for additional instructions on how to obtain a replacement light.

      For additional information, contact Coleman at (800) 835-3278 between 7 a.m. and 4:45 p.m. CT Monday through Friday, or visit the firm's website at www.coleman.com.

      The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

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      Coleman Company Recalls Water-Activated Spotlights...
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      Milk Recalled For Improper Pasteurization

      Product was distributed in five states



      Midland Farms, based in Menands, New York, has recalled certain milk products due to the potential of improper pasteurization. The company did not disclose how much milk is included in the recall.

      The pasteurization process is designed to heat milk in order to effectively eliminate all pathogenic bacteria, such as Listeria and Salmonella. Recalled products were sold in New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island.

      The company said the recalled milk products are all sold in plastic containers and are marketed under the brand names Midland Farms, Corrado's Market, Jersey Dairy Farms and Trade Fair Premium. They all possess the plant code 36-1661.

      The products also possess a black ink date code near the top of the container. The products involved in this recall include:

      Recalled Gallons:

      • "Midland Farms Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Midland Farms Reduced Fat, 2% Milk Fat Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Midland Farms Low Fat, 1% Milk Fat Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Midland Farms Fat Free Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Corrado's Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Corrado's Market Reduced Fat, 2% Milk Fat Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Corrado's Market Low Fat 1% Milk Fat Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Corrado's Market Fat Free Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Jersey Dairy Farms Vitamin D Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Trade Fair Premium Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Trade Fair Premium Reduced Fat, 2% Milk Fat Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Trade Fair Premium Low Fat, 1% Milk Fat Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Trade Fair Premium Fat Free Milk" with the date code SEP24

      Recalled Half-Gallons:

      • "Midland Farms Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Midland Farms Reduced Fat, 2% Milk Fat Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Midland Farms Low Fat, 1% Milk Fat Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Midland Farms Fat Free Milk" with the date code SEP24

      • "Jersey Dairy Farms Vitamin D Milk" with the date code SEP24

      Recalled Quarts:

      • "Midland Farms Fresh Whole Milk" with SELLBY 9/24/10

      • "Midland Farms Reduced Fat Milk" with SELLBY 9/24/10

      • "Midland Farms Fresh Low Fat Milk" with SELLBY 9/24/10

      • "Midland Farms Fresh Fat Free Milk" with SELLBY 9/24/10

      Recalled Pints:

      • "Midland Farms Whole Milk" with SELLBY 9/24/10

      The New Jersey Division of Consumer Affairs said it has learned that the problem was detected by the New York State Department of Agriculture and Markets' milk inspectors during an inspection on September 7, 2010 when they found a failure of pasteurization equipment at the Menands milk plant. While the recalled products have not been found to be contaminated with any harmful pathogens, the company has determined to voluntarily recall all production as a precautionary measure.



      Midland Farms, has recalled certain milk products due to the potential of improper pasteurization. The company did not disclose how much milk is included i...
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      FDA Acts Against 5 Electronic Cigarette Distributors

      Agency cites unsubstantiated claims, poor manufacturing practices


      The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has issued warning letters to five electronic cigarette distributors for various violations of the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act (FDCA) including unsubstantiated claims and poor manufacturing practices.

      Also, in a letter to the Electronic Cigarette Association, FDA said the agency intends to regulate electronic cigarette and related products in a manner consistent with its mission of protecting the public health. The letter outlines the regulatory pathway for marketing drug products in compliance with the FDCA.

      For a drug product to gain FDA approval, a company must demonstrate to the agency that the product is safe and effective for its intended use. The company must also demonstrate that manufacturing methods are adequate to preserve the strength, quality and purity of the product.

      "FDA invites electronic cigarette firms to work in cooperation with the agency toward the goal of assuring that electronic cigarettes sold in the United States are lawfully marketed," the letter to the association read.

      FDA has determined that the electronic cigarette products addressed in the warning letters to the distributors, and similar products, are subject to FDA regulation as drugs.

      Under the FDCA, a company cannot claim that its drug can treat or mitigate a disease, such as nicotine addiction, unless the drug's safety and effectiveness have been proven. Yet all five companies claim without FDA review of relevant evidence that the products help users quit smoking cigarettes.

      The companies receiving warning letters today are: E-CigaretteDirect LLC, Ruyan America Inc., Gamucci America (Smokey Bayou Inc.), E-Cig Technology Inc. and Johnson Creek Enterprises LLC.

      Variety of letters

      Certain companies received warning letters for additional reasons. For example, E-Cig Technology markets drugs in unapproved liquid forms, such as tadalafil, an erectile dysfunction drug, and rimonabant, a weight loss drug that has not been approved for use in the United States. These liquid pharmaceuticals are designed to refill cartridges used in e-cigarettes so that the drugs can be vaporized and inhaled.

      The FDA cited Johnson Creek Enterprises, which markets Smoke Juice, a liquid solution used to refill depleted cartridges in e-cigarettes, for several significant deficiencies in its manufacturing processes, including failure to establish quality control and testing procedures required under the FDCA.



      FDA Acts Against 5 Electronic Cigarette Distributors...
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      New Rules Make It Easier To Appeal Health Claim Denials

      But rules only apply to new plans



      One of the provisions of the health care reform law will make it easier for consumers to appeal denial of health insurance claims at least, it'll be easier for some consumers.

      In July the Obama Administration issued the new rules guaranteeing consumers the right to appeal claims denials -- directly to their insurers and then, if necessary, to external review boards. But the rules apply only on new policies, for plan years beginning on or after September 23, 2010.

      The rules for both internal and external reviews do not apply to "grandfathered" plans -- those that existed on March 23, 2010, when the health law was enacted. But plans can lose their "grandfathered" status if they make significant changes to their plans regarding costs or benefits. The new rules do not supersede any state requirements that are stricter than those in the new federal law.

      Internal appeals process

      The new rules require health insurance issuers offering group or individual health insurance coverage to implement an effective internal claims and appeals process.

      For group health plans, this includes:

      • compliance with all the Department of Labor claims procedure regulations;
      • notification, in most cases, to a claimant of a benefit determination involving urgent care within 24 hours;
      • providing the claimant with any new or additional evidence considered;
      • assurance that claims and appeals are adjudicated in a manner to avoid any conflict of interest;
      • providing information to enrollees in a culturally and linguistically appropriate manner;
      • and the deeming of the internal claims process as exhausted if the plan fails to strictly adhere to all the above requirements.

      Plans are required to continue coverage pending the outcome of an internal appeal.

      Individual health plans must generally comply with all the requirements for the internal claims and appeals process for group health plans. In addition, they must include in the claims and appeals process initial eligibility determinations, including pre-existing conditions; they must limit the internal appeals process to one appeal, allowing the claimant to go immediately to external or judicial review; and they must maintain for six years all records in connection with their claims and appeals process.

      External review process

      The new rules also mandate an external review process. The external-review requirement will apply, for the first time, to companies that are self-insured -- ones that pay their employees' claims directly rather than buying insurance to cover their workers.

      Most states already guarantee consumers the right to external appeals, though their rules vary widely. Only Alabama, Mississippi, Nebraska, and North and South Dakota do not have external review laws.

      The new rules will largely end the patchwork of protections that apply to only some plans in some states, and simplify the system for consumers, according to the non-profit Patient Advocate Foundation (PAF), which analyzed the new regulatrions. If a state external review process applies to and is binding on insurance plans and includes, at a minimum, the consumer protections in the Uniform Model Act of the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC), then the issuer complies with the State process and not the federal external review process.

      Under the regulations, states are "encouraged" to adopt the new external review standards by July 2011. The new regulations take effect for plan years starting Sept. 23, 2010, but they will not automatically apply to residents in states that have existing external review laws until next July, so that states have time to adjust to the new standards.

      If states fail to change their rules by next July, their residents will then be able to rely on the federal standards. But the PAF says federal officials are still working out the details of how that will be done. For plans in states without an existing State external review process, including self-insured plans, the federal process will apply to plan years (in the individual market, policy years) beginning on or after September 23, 2010.



      New Rules Make It Easier To AppealHealth Claim Denials...
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      FIXIT Rechargeable Spotlights Recalled

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      Innovage LLC is recalling about 1.4 million FIXIT rechargeable spotlights. The spotlights charging adapter can overcharge the battery, forcing it to rupture and leak battery acid. This poses a chemical burn hazard to consumers.

      The firm has received 13 reports of incidents involving minor skin chemical burns and battery acid burn holes in upholstery, clothing and carpeting.

      This recall involves the One Million Candlepower Spotlight, a rechargeable halogen light. The handheld spotlight is made of yellow plastic and has a black label that reads, FIXIT Tools UP TO 1,000,000 CANDLE POWER or FIXIT Rechargeable Spotlight. The spotlight is sold with an AC power charger and a 12 volt car utility adapter.

      The spotlights, made in China, were sold at Walgreens, Rite Aid, Bealls, Tuesday Morning, Ace Hardware, Boscovs and Winn-Dixie stores nationwide from October 2003 through October 2009 for about $10.

      Consumers should immediately stop using the spotlights and contact Innovage for a full refund of the regular retail price. For purchases made above the regular retail price, additional refunds will be offered with valid receipts. Consumers are asked to return the product, via a self-addressed stamped envelope or box that will be provided. Instructions for returning the product are posted at www.spotlightrecall.org and are also available from the Innovage call center.

      For additional information, contact Innovage toll-free at (888) 408-1140 between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. PT Monday through Friday, or visit the firms website at www.spotlightrecall.org.

      The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

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      FIXIT Rechargeable Spotlights Recalled...
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      Simms Fishing Products Recalls Wading Staffs

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      Simms Fishing Products is recalling about 3,000 wading staff because they can collapse.

      The recalled product is a wading staff used to assist in wading rivers and streams. These staffs, offered in two sizes (52" & 56"), are sterling silver in color and are identified by Simms item numbers AWS101152 or AWS101156 (UPC numbers 94264-10102 or 94264-10103). The item number and UPC numbers can be found on the product hang tag attached to the staff at time of purchase. Affected wading staffs are visibly identifiable by a silver cable connector.

      The staffs, made in the U.S., were sold by authorized dealers nationwide from March 2010 through June 2010 for about $120.

      Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled product and contact Simms Fishing Products or an authorized dealer to receive a free replacement staff or a full refund.

      For additional information, contact Simms Fishing Products toll-free at (877) 789-6555 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. MT Monday through Friday, visit the firm's website at www.simmsfishing.com.

      The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

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      Simms Fishing Products Recalls Wading Staffs...
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      Black & Decker Recalls Random Orbit Sanders

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      Black & Decker is recalling about 192,000 random orbit sanders. The black plastic disc (called the platen) that holds the sandpaper can fly off or break apart during use and the disc, or pieces of the disc, can hit the user or those nearby, posing a laceration hazard.

      Black & Decker has received 73 reports of incidents involving the sanders black plastic disc (platen) breaking or falling apart, including 15 reports of injuries from flying pieces, one of which involved a serious facial laceration.

      This recall involves Black & Decker random orbit sanders with model numbers RO400, RO400G, RO410, RO410K, RO410LW and FS3000ROS and date codes between 200701 and 200929. The sanders are orange and black. Black & Decker is printed on the sanders. The model number is printed on a label on the sander. The date code is stamped on the underside of the sander where the dust bag is inserted.

      The sanders, made in China, were sold at home center, hardware and discount stores and by authorized Black & Decker dealers nationwide from January 2007 through July 2009 for about $40.

      Consumers should immediately stop using the recalled sanders and contact Black & Decker for a free replacement platen to hold the sandpaper.

      For additional information, contact Black & Decker toll-free at (866) 220-1767 between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. ET Monday through Friday or visit the firms website at www.blackanddecker.com.

      The recall is being conducted in cooperation with the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission (CPSC).

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      Black & Decker Recalls Random Orbit Sanders...
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      Kids Win the Junk-Food Tug of War

      Parents often settle for less nutritious foods when buying for their kids


      While parents may prefer nutritious foods for the entire family, their preference for healthy foods is about 50 percent weaker when they're selecting products for the kids, rather than for themselves.

      Why does this happen? Parents give in at the grocery store -- or before they even get there, in the case of this study -- compromising their preferences based on what they believe their children will accept, says study author Irwin Levin, a professor of psychology and marketing at the University of Iowa.

      "Perhaps they think the child won't eat the healthy option, or they suspect that the child will beg for the unhealthy foods," he says. "But, when you look at this particular finding in the context of rising childhood obesity, the question for parents to consider is this: You try to eat healthy. Do you want less for your child?"

      Levin published the study in the September issue of the Journal of Consumer Behaviour with his son, Aron Levin, an associate professor of marketing at Northern Kentucky University.

      The study involved more than three dozen seven-year-old children and a parent of each child (usually the mother), who rated eight combinations of cards displaying food products.

      How they fared

      They rated each item on a five-point scale indicating how good or bad they thought it was. Kids indicated how they'd feel if their parents bought the product, and parents indicated the likelihood of purchasing the product for themselves and for their children.

      Results showed that boys were 20 percent more likely to rate unhealthy products higher, while girls were 20 percent more likely to rate healthy foods higher.

      "Other studies have found evidence of this as well," Irwin Levin says. "There are indications of basic physiological differences -- that is, boys require more sweetness to like a food than girls do. It's possible there is also a cultural effect in play, with the young girls already developing concerns about thinness."

      Brand name proved to be the most important factor for both kids and adults. Familiar brand names were Lay's, Kellogg's, Cheerios, and Yoplait, while fictitious names were provided for the other products.

      Whether the food was healthy was the second-most influential factor in terms of ratings. Healthy products were low-fat yogurt and plain toasted oat cereal; unhealthy products were potato chips and breakfast tarts.

      Celebrity endorsements

      And, despite the big bucks shelled out for endorsements and licensed cartoon characters, they proved to be the least significant factor. Adults rated products with fictitious endorsements by Tiger Woods (before his personal problems became public), Jay Leno, Adam Sandler, and Katherine Heigl, while children rated products picturing Shrek, Scooby Doo, The Incredibles, or SpongeBob on the package.

      "Using popular cartoon characters on the packaging can have some limited effect on children, but promoting healthy eating can be best accomplished when the product is provided by a familiar brand name," Irwin Levin says. "While SpongeBob can be used to promote healthy eating habits in our children, trusted brands like Kellogg's and conscientious parents can do even more."

      The research was funded by a National Science Foundation grant to study the development of decision-making competence in children.



      While parents may prefer nutritious foods for the entire family, their preference for healthy foods is about 50 percent weaker when they're selecting produ...
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