Nurses Frequently Do Doctors’ Jobs

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The next time you go to see a doctor, odds are good that you’ll actually see a nurse. Today, about 160,000 advanced-practice nurses — registered nurses (R.N.’s) with additional training — are giving checkups, delivering babies, caring for pregnant women, and administering anesthesia in the operating room. Some work alongside doctors in private practices and hospitals; others see patients on their own. The trend is growing because of a shortage of family doctors, as well as a meteoric rise in health-care costs. In under-staffed hospitals and clinics, nurses enable doctors to spend more time on difficult cases. And at salaries that average about 40 percent of primary-care physicians’, advanced-practice nurses can in some cases save money for medical groups and insurers. The savings, however, aren’t usually passed along to the consumer.

At least one health maintenance organization (HMO), Oxford Health Plans Inc., of Norwalk, CT, has begun a pilot program that allows members to choose an advanced-practice nurse instead of a doctor as a primary-care
provider — the first line of defense when you get sick. These nurses are able to prescribe drugs and admit patients to the hospital. They work closely with physicians at Continue reading…

Saving The Smallest Victims

Angelica was a beautiful baby. “She was perfect,” says Carmen Collazo, a 28-year-old police officer with the Eighty-third Precinct in the Bushwick section of Brooklyn. “She had very dark hair, straight, but with a little bit of a curl at the ends. She had all ten fingers, all ten toes. She was lovely.

I’ll never forget that face,” adds fellow officer Jane Penney, 33. It was Penney who responded to a 911 call and pulled the five-and-a-half-pound newborn from a Dumpster outside a local bodega. On the way to the hospital, she performed CPR. “The baby was cold,” Penney remembers. “Cold and stiff and blue, so I knew … but still, you have to try.”

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At Wycoff Heights Medical Center, Penney and Collazo — who’d answered a 911 call from the hospital and was already there, waiting — held hands and prayed as doctors tried to breathe life back into Angelica’s tiny body. But after frantically working for 45 minutes, they saw it was no use. On March 18, at 10:45 A.M., the little girl was pronounced dead.

Penney thought of her own little girls, Continue reading…

The Case Of The Dangerous Dermatologist

ddGerri Poe(*) will never forget the visit she made to her new dermatologist 11 years ago. She had an appointment to have some unsightly moles removed, and while she was waiting, she noticed a boldly headlined poster on the wall: CAN YOU SPOT A KILLER WHEN YOU SEE ONE? It listed the ABCs of the warning signs for
moles that can turn into cancerous melanoma: A for asymmetry, B for irregular borders, and C for varied colors. Poe became worried that some of her moles fit the description. Poe, a petite, fair-skinned woman who was then in her mid-20s, had found the doctor’s listing in the phone book. The ad featured a drawing of the pretty physician, with a promise: “Allyn Beth Landau, M.D., helps her patients to achieve and maintain healthy, natural good looks.” Landau, the ad said, was not only a doctor, but also a “scientific beauty expert.” Poe liked the sound of all that, plus the fact that Landau was on her insurance plan.

But that day in the San Francisco waiting room, Poe began to feel uneasy. The doctor’s office “had a
flamboyantly feminine feel,” she recalls — decorated in vibrant florals, with a bright red couch shaped
like a pair of lips. When Landau, an attractive ash-blond woman, then in her mid-30s, introduced herself to
Poe, she apologized for her appearance, explaining that she’d had a disastrous date the night before with a
guy who turned out to be a jerk. Poe was taken aback. “Doctors just don’t talk that way.” At another point,
Poe saw Landau walking through Continue reading…

How To Feel Younger Immediately

On a weekend getaway, you climb five flights of stairs to see the view from an old church — just as you
did on your honeymoon — but now you’re out of breath by the third landing, Your wardrobe has devolved into
thigh-length sweaters, blazers, and slacks with elastic waistbands. Whatever happened to the robust health
you took for granted not so long ago? Never mind where it went — what’s important is that you can get it back. No longer do we have to rely on the age-old advice to “take some tonic and get fresh air.” We have years of scientific inquiry for guidance.
Here, the latest on how to turn back the clock.

1. Eat Strategically

fcadLooking for the next-best thing to a youth potion? Try foods containing antioxidants — substances that neutralize chemicals believed to contribute to most age-related problems, including heart disease, cancer, and even wrinkles. Fruits and vegetables are high in antioxidants, as are garlic, red wine (drink in moderation), green tea and, soy (try miso soup and tofu). Eat at Continue reading…

Economic Woes Hurt The Trade

Economic woes may be keeping Asia’s big spenders away from Rodeo Drive and Madison Avenue, but surprisingly, the high-end boutique business is still humming in both New York and L.A.

The reason: an influx of American tourists and a growing base of local customers.

Retailers such as Chanel, Hermes and Lacoste are seeing more tourists from Russia and South America in their stores, but the strongest growth has come from local customers and American shoppers.

“I don’t think there’s one particular ethnic group that has replaced those Asian shoppers,” said Tony Cherbak, a retail analyst and partner with Deloitte & Touche. “I think it’s basically these businesses are drawing from their basic demographics, especially Rodeo Drive, which has a hard-core following from its central demographics on the west side and Bel-Air.”

Marion Davidson, vice president of marketing for Hermes, said, “There are fewer Japanese customers, but those who are visiting the stores are spending quite a bit more. The Continue reading…

LA Art: Getting Better All The Time

Los Angeles is a city of image and imagination: a vast urban expanse filled with buildings and streets, yet relatively free of famous landmarks. There is neither an Eiffel Tower nor a Times Square, no Big Ben or Golden Gate Bridge to symbolize the complex essence of the city. Ironically, its recognizable landmarks such as the Hollywood sign, City Hall, Watts Towers–even Sleeping Beauty’s Castle at Disneyland–carry powerful connotations that transcend their association with Los Angeles.

The city lacks a concrete identity. Intangible and often transcendent qualities such as light, air, smog, and sunshine have come to define it. Despite its impressive environment, surrounded by mountains and perched at the edge of the Pacific Ocean, the face of L.A. is virtually anonymous.

Every artist responds to the vagaries of the city in a unique way, but themes recur. For this show, the works were arranged into three conceptual and thematic groups: observation, imagination, and motion. Beginning with works in the observation category, I started the show off with a lithograph by David Hockney. Perhaps no other artist has defined our perception of 20th-century Los Angeles as much as this artist. Pool I, the work I chose to feature, is an aqueous blue print depicting the comer of a swimming pool. The diving board casts a narrow, abstract shadow into the pool’s depths as the water’s surface reflects a shimmer of patterned crosshatching. Hockney’s ability to take a simple subject and transform it into a meditation on space, place, and drawing–the crux of his work–is beautifully illustrated.

A meticulous untitled watercolor from 1986 by Peter Lodato and Helen Lundeberg’s Double View, an acrylic on canvas, were hung near the Hockney print Both are interior/exterior views and capture a quality of dreamy light and timeless atmosphere particular to Southern California. From different generations (Lodato is considered part of the 1960s Light and Space School, while Lundeberg is a Southern California arts pioneer who first received Continue reading…