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Elizabeth Cooney is a health reporter for the Worcester Telegram & Gazette.
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Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Today's Globe: EMTs often hurt, 47m uninsured, Dr. Jack Mendelson, Beethoven and lead, 'Crazy Sexy Cancer'

Boston's emergency medical technicians, who often run red lights and speed through the opposite lane of traffic to save lives, are trained to confront broken bones and cardiac arrest. But EMTs, who are responding to more calls each year, often become victims themselves as they face Boston's rampant street violence without the guns, mace, and nightsticks that police officers carry.

A record 47 million Americans did not have health insurance last year, while the percentage of children without insurance rose for a second consecutive year, according to US Census Bureau data released yesterday, leading Democrats to charge that the Bush administration has ignored a growing, more vulnerable population.

mendelson100.bmpDr. Jack Mendelson (left), a noted psychiatrist at McLean Hospital and endocrinologist who promoted the concept that alcoholism is a medical disorder, died of cancer on Aug. 15 at the Kaplan Family Hospice in Danvers. He was 77.

beethoven85.bmpDid someone kill Beethoven? A Viennese pathologist asserts that the composer's physician did -- inadvertently overdosing him with lead in a cure that went wrong. Other researchers are not convinced, but there is no controversy about one fact: The master had been a very sick man years before his death in 1827.

If feminism these days is all about sexiness as power -- vanquishing foes with a kiss -- then cancer might be the modern girl's ultimate challenge. Who better to conquer a dread disease than a hot chick with an attitude? That's who Kris Carr purports to be in "Crazy Sexy Cancer," an engaging documentary that airs tonight at 9 on TLC.

Posted by Elizabeth Cooney at 06:56 AM
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