Health & Medical News

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As Sharon Yates cut and plated pumpkin pie slices for a free weekly meal served by Trillium Health at the organization’s Rochester headquarters, she reflected that this one might be especially important. It was the day before Thanksgiving.

“Particularly on a holiday there might be people who don’t have family or friends they can go to, so we try to make this festive and a good occasion for them to be here,” Yates said.

And while that’s good for people who are looking for a hot meal or a communal gathering, not everyone wants to spend Thanksgiving around a crowded table, mental health experts say.

“It’s something that can be very confusing when the broader social conversation and media conversation is, ‘Who are you going to be with on Thanksgiving?’” said Chacku Mathai, CEO of the Mental Health Association of Rochester.


Health officials in the U.S. and Canada on Tuesday told people to avoid eating romaine lettuce because of an E. coli outbreak.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration said it was working with officials in Canada on the outbreak, which has sickened 32 people in 11 states in the U.S. and 18 people in the Canadian provinces of Ontario and Quebec.

The strain identified is different than the one linked to romaine earlier this year, but it appears similar to one linked to leafy greens last year.

University of Rochester Medical Center

Peanut allergy is one of the most deadly food allergies in the United States, and one of the least likely to be outgrown.

Now, a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine has found that ingesting "teeny-tiny" amounts of peanut protein can help treat the condition – sort of.

The allergy is usually caused by a certain protein found in the peanut kernel and marketed in its medical form as AR101.

Monroe County Heroin Task Force

Monroe County’s total overdoses for the year have surged past 1,000 in the last few days, topping last year’s numbers by more than 250 with six weeks still left in the year.

Those statistics, based on unofficial data from the sheriff’s department and the medical examiner’s office and shared at a meeting of the county’s heroin task force, paint a bleak picture of the epidemic’s toll, said Deputy Mike Favata.

Greater Rochester Health Foundation

The Greater Rochester Health Foundation has appointed a new CEO.

The organization has hired Matthew Kuhlenbeck, of St. Louis, Missouri, as its new leader.

Interim CEO Dennis Richardson said the foundation’s board chose Kuhlenbeck after a nationwide search that yielded at least 50 applicants.

“Matt stood out as a person who brings a collaborative mind and a wealth of experience,” Richardson said.


The New York state health department has recommended easing access to medical marijuana.

In a report released this week, the department said it needs to find a balance between “relieving the pain and suffering of those in desperate need of a treatment,” and protecting the public from risks to health and safety.

The recommendations outlined in the report tend to support expansion of the medical marijuana program.

Red Cross issuing immediate call for donors

Nov 14, 2018

The American Red Cross says it's facing a severe blood shortage and is urgent need of blood and platelet donors to give now in advance of the holidays, a time when the organization typically sees a shortfall in donations.

Communications manager for the New York Penn blood services region, Patty Corvaia, says they are starting their appeal for donors in mid-November, for good reason.

"We had 21-thousand less donations in October and September, and that's led to a significant, significant shortage," she said.

RIP Medical Debt

Over $2 million of medical debt across New York state is about to be erased.

It’s due to the efforts of two friends, 70-year-old Carolyn Kenyon and 80-year-old Judy Jones, both of Ithaca, who raised $12,500 that they’ve donated to an organization called RIP Medical Debt.

Brett Dahlberg / WXXI News

Residents along North Clinton Avenue joined with others from around Rochester on Tuesday evening to say “no more” to the heroin epidemic they said is concentrated in the blocks around St. Michael’s church.

Demonstrators stood side-by-side down two-and-a-half blocks of North Clinton Avenue, from Clifford Avenue to Hoeltzler Street, aiming to disrupt the drug sales they say happen there daily.

It was planned as a silent protest, but occasional chants of “No más!” broke out along the line of demonstrators.

A local hospital is taking a stand against the use of corporal punishment.

Golisano Children's Hospital has established a "no hit zone" throughout the hospital. Dr. Lynette Froula says it's an effort to support parents and educate them that spanking is harmful to children.