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Elizabeth Cooney is a health reporter for the Worcester Telegram & Gazette.
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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Today's Globe: mystery shoppers, Stephen Wong, ovarian cancer, tainted water, human tissue industry, TB case, childhood obesity

Mystery shoppers, a new breed of hospital employees in Boston and nationwide, secretly watch fellow workers to see whether patients are treated courteously and helpfully.

wong100.bmpGlobe columnist Steve Bailey worries about the Yankees, but he worries even more about Stephen Wong (left), the scientist who left Harvard for Houston with 20 members of his lab, as reported here last week.

Cancer specialists have identified a set of health problems that may be symptoms of ovarian cancer, and they are urging women who have the symptoms for more than a few weeks to see their doctors.

marine family150.bmpMarine families (such as former Navy Dr. Michael Gros and his wife, Janie, left) who lived at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina over three decades drank water contaminated with toxins as much as 40 times over today's safety standard, federal health investigators said yesterday.

Federal regulators say they have dramatically boosted inspections of companies that harvest cadaver body parts for transplant, acknowledging weaknesses in government oversight of the multibillion-dollar human tissue industry that last year was rocked by scandal.

Health officials trying to stop a globetrotting honeymooner with a dangerous form of tuberculosis got little assistance from his lawyer father and his future father-in-law, a TB specialist who not only balked at stopping the Greek wedding, but went to the ceremony himself, according to e-mails.

Doctors ought to quit using fuzzy terms to define children's weight problems and instead refer to truly fat children as overweight or obese, a committee of medical specialists recommended.

Posted by Elizabeth Cooney at 06:26 AM
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