Perspectives: Big Questions About Cause-And-Effect Decisions From Juries On Cancer; Kids Have Much To Say About All The Bickering
Opinion pages look at these health issues and others.
The Wall Street Journal:
What Causes Cancer? It’s Complicated
A San Francisco jury decided last month that a plaintiff’s case of non-Hodgkin lymphoma was caused by Bayer’s Roundup weedkiller, which contains glyphosate, a probable carcinogen; last Wednesday the panel awarded him $80 million in damages. Less than a week before, a jury in Oakland, Calif., awarded $29 million to a woman who claimed her mesothelioma was caused by asbestos in Johnson & Johnson ’s talc powder. Last year in Missouri, Johnson & Johnson was ordered to pay $4.7 billion to 22 plaintiffs who believed the powder caused ovarian cancer. These decisions aren’t the win for consumers that they might seem to be. Instead, they represent a search for a scapegoat that distorts the science of cancer as well as society’s conception of the disease. (Arthur W. Lambert, 4/1)
The Washington Post:
The Kids Talked About Shootings, College Costs, Depression. Were The Adults Listening?
It’s still hard for McKenzie Turner to talk about that day. She was walking home from middle school three years ago with her best friend, who couldn’t wait to tell his dad that he’d aced a math test. He bolted away from McKenzie so he could share the news. “But when he walked into his house, he found his dad was shot. He was bleeding out,” said McKenzie, now 15 and a sophomore at Richard Wright Public Charter School in Southeast Washington. “His dad died.” (Petula Dvorak, 4/1)
Addressing The Challenges Of Direct-To-Consumer Health Products
Health products are increasingly moving from the realm of the medical professional to the consumer. Direct-to-consumer (DTC) versions of teeth alignment kits, genetic tests, hearing aids, heart-rhythm monitors, neurostimulation devices, and mental health tools are already on the market, causing professional organizations of dentists, geneticists, audiologists, cardiologists, neurologists, and psychiatrists to grapple with challenges to their authority and practice. So far, questions about safe and appropriate marketing and use have reverberated mainly within individual professional domains. We believe that thinking about these products as part of a larger problem can yield valuable insights. (Anna Wexler and Steven Joffe, 4/2)
Defunding Planned Parenthood Risks Lives
If the drivers of this effort to defund Planned Parenthood were actually concerned with life, then we would see just as much effort on their end to ensure that women have the resources they need to access these services. Early detection is vital to addressing health concerns such as cervical cancer, breast cancer and STDs that can lead to serious complications if not treated right away. (Rebekah Bolser, 4/1)
People Of Faith Must Act To Confront The Challenges Of Climate Change
The Nature Conservancy and St. Thomas are committed to building a climate-conscious community that learns from those of various religious backgrounds. Both understand the importance of faith leaders in amplifying climate-change education. The moral perspective of the faithful adds further urgency to the scientific data all around us. (Temperance Morgan and David Armstrong, 4/1)
Phoenix VA Is Still Broken, Which Is Why We Need An Office There
Veterans should not have to go to their federal representatives to help them cut through the VA red tape, yet it inexplicably continues to occur. One of the primary features of our bill is to install a dedicated, full-time congressional liaison at the Phoenix VA so that we can help our veterans get the care that they deserve, as swiftly as possible. (Andy Biggs, Paul Gosar, Debbie Lesko, et. al., 4/1)