3 Terrifying Pieces Of Anti-Woman Legislation You Need To Know About Right Now

When I mention your body’s biggest enemy, you probably have something that came immediately to mind: your thighs, your arms, the pimple you got from dropping kettle corn into your mouth/all over your face so you could eat without sitting up for normal adult reasons. Or maybe you thought of the parade of fuckboys last few bros you banged who confirmed for you that some people just weren’t built to interact with the female body. This second guess is closer to what I’m actually talking about, because it similarly concerns a group of largely white men (if you’d like to fight me on your sexual history, feel free, I’m just taking a guess) who have no business with women’s bodies, and yet can’t leave them the fuck alone. Those people are called YOUR GOVERNMENT. (Mic drop, I am political.)

In all honesty, I probably don’t have a single friend who would describe me as political; I don’t even feel like I ignore the news on purpose, it just kind of floats past me, like everything that was ever said in a high school history class. But because I’m a selfish bitch I care about my readers very much, when I hear about bullshit new measures that will negatively affect my body both on a daily basis and in times of need, I am going to listen the fuck up and urge you all to do the same. Here’s a rundown of the three scariest pieces of legislation aimed to limit women’s choices right now—and for those of you with any remaining doubts that I really do not usually care/write about politics, please know that I literally just Googled the word “legislation” to make sure I was using it correctly. Feels good.

1. Remember When Obama Made Your Boss Pay for Your Birth Control? Yeah, That’s Over.

In a continued bid to out-evil Satan, Trump made a fun little announcement last Friday: He’s shut down the Obama-era law requiring most employers to cover co-pay-free birth control, an amazing measure we definitely all took completely for granted. Now, in the nation of Gilead Trump’s America, employers will be able to cite “religious or moral objection” to covering birth control, and BAM: You can no longer afford brunch, because that budget has been re-allocated to your “not getting pregnant” fund. Oh, and regardless of your birth control type, this shit is not cheap: My employer insurance had a fun two-week blackout last month and I was charged $200 for a 30-day supply of my GENERIC birth control pill. So don’t even try to come at me with that “just pay out of pocket, mer mer mer, women want everything for free” shit, TYLER.

Proposed Solution: If there is a guy you are regularly having sex with, and your birth control coverage is affected, ask him to pay for half. I know this doesn’t effect change on a policy level, but as a group, can women please stop accepting sole financial responsibility for preventing pregnancy? If the guy you’re fucking starts whining about the cost, just tell him there’s a 100% free alternative: You can stop having sex with him, forever.

2. 20 Weeks Pregnant? Cool, You’re Having a Baby Now.

Though this isn’t yet in immediate effect like the above measure, a bill recently passed through the House of Representatives criminalizing abortion after 20 weeks of pregnancy. Never mind the fact that if our government hates abortions so much, they probably shouldn’t have repealed the access to free birth control, which conveniently yielded lower abortion rates than we had in 1973, when abortion was made legal nation-wide. Never mind the disgustingly insulting title for this bill of “Pain-Capable Unborn Child Protection Act,” which would perhaps have been more aptly titled “Pain-Capable and Very Much Born Adult Woman Punishment Act.” In this case, let’s focus on the fact that one of the bill’s co-sponsors, Tim Murphy of Pennsylvania, was literally texting his mistress to GET AN ABORTION while passing this bill through the House. Everything about this bill (and its relation to less-available birth control) is so alarmingly nonsensical that I’m almost ready to start buying into lizard-person theories. Given the one season I watched of , I feel like “handling” a mistress’ pregnancy is basically a rite of passage for most politicians—so why are they so fucking intent on making sure those abortions need to be illegal and unsafe? It’s definitely not a conspiracy to have more women die during the procedure, rendering them unable to talk about the affair, right? Wait…right?

3. A Special-Edition Coverage Slash For Pre-Pregnant, Pregnant, And Post-Pregnant Women

This bad boy, otherwise known as the Graham-Cassidy bill, is luckily having a lot of trouble getting passed, so there’s chance you won’t actually have to deal with this specifically. Which is good because I JUST spent two hours of my Monday at a Planned Parenthood phone bank defeating this nightmare of a bill that keeps popping back up like a zombie Whack-A-Mole, can I live for one week?? But honestly, every proposed healthcare reform bill this garbage-monster administration has spewed out has been pretty similarly shitty, so expect comparable measures if they manage to get anything through. This particular bill has gone ahead and banned women on Medicaid from visiting Planned Parenthood (straight up, I do not know what Medicaid is, but oh my god just allow women access to appropriate healthcare, our bodies are more complicated than yours and we fucking need it). Also, it’s restricted abortion coverage and maternity care in the same bill, so really (unless you’re a politician’s mistress!), these people would like to ensure that you get pregnant, stay pregnant, and bear the emotional, physical, and financial burden of that pregnancy all on your own. Just like how you got pregnant all on your own, without the help of any second party. Right.

Basically, the only common thread of these new measures is that our government doesn’t give a shit about you or your body. There’s no ideological or economic background that makes any sense, much like when Dean started motorboating D-Lo in the pool, thus jeopardizing his supposed “deep emotional connection” with Kristina, and the lucrative fandom love that could have launched a thousand Instagram sponsorships. So, I encourage you to start thinking about our government the way you think about the fuckboys we deal with on a daily basis: Until they shape the fuck up, we’ll be heavily looking into alternative options. You don’t let fuckboys tell you what to do with your body, so let’s get them out of these government positions where they can literally charge you for going against their dumbass ideas on what your body has access to.

 
 

Read more: http://www.betches.com/3-anti-women-healthcare-legislation

People are in love with the ‘ICU Grandpa’ who cuddles babies at an Atlanta hospital.

On a recent morning, a woman walked into the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU) at Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta and saw a stranger holding her baby.

The stranger was an older, bespectacled man. He was sitting in a chair and draped in a thin medical smock, gently rocking her infant son, Logan.

Logan had been in the NICU for six weeks after being born prematurely and needed around-the-clock care. His mom was there to hold him as often as she could be, but as she was making her way to the hospital that morning, the man, David Deutchman, was happy to step in.

They call him the “ICU Grandpa.” And he’s been offering snuggles as an official volunteer at the hospital for 12 years.

In a now super-viral Facebook post, the hospital wrote that Deutchman has a very specific cuddling schedule: on Tuesdays he visits the older babies and kids in the PICU (pediatric intensive care unit), and on Thursdays he visits with the newborns in the NICU.

Logan’s mom isn’t the only one who’s met the hospital “legend” — the social media post, which has been shared over 47,000 times, is overflowing with comments from parents who’ve been touched by his kindness and generosity.

You can read the entire thing below:

They call him the ICU Grandpa. On Tuesdays, he visits the PICU to hold babies whose parents can’t be with them that day….

Posted by Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta on Wednesday, September 27, 2017

For young kids, and newborns especially, human contact and warmth is an essential part of survival.

It’s been scientifically demonstrated that newborns with access to food and shelter but no love or bonding, are unlikely to thrive. For this reason, volunteer cuddlers are common at hospitals around the country.

We won’t hold it against you if Deutchman isn’t immediately what came to mind when you heard “volunteer cuddler.” He says his guy friends don’t really get it either.

“I tell them, ‘I hold babies. Sometimes I get puked on, I get peed on. It’s great,'” he says in a video put together by Children’s Healthcare. But he says that “they just don’t get it, the kind of reward you can get from holding a baby like this.”

That’s the kind of attitude that’s made Deutchman an overnight Internet sensation.

Rock on, ICU Grandpa. Rock on.

The ICU Grandpa of Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta

By now, you’ve probably heard about our ICU Grandpa. Here’s a look at the hospital legend doing what he does best.

Posted by Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta on Friday, September 29, 2017

Read more: http://www.upworthy.com/people-are-in-love-with-the-icu-grandpa-who-cuddles-babies-at-an-atlanta-hospital

Penguins starving to death is a sign that somethings very wrong in the Antarctic | John Sauven

Overfishing, oil drilling, pollution and climate change are imperilling the ecosystem. But ocean sanctuaries could help protect what belongs to us all, says Greenpeace director John Sauven

The awful news that all but two penguin chicks have starved to death out of a colony of almost 40,000 birds is a grim illustration of the enormous pressure Antarctic wildlife is under. The causes of this devastating event are complex, from a changing climate to local sea-ice factors, but one thing penguins, whales and other marine life dont need is additional strain on food supplies.

Over the next year we have the opportunity to create an Antarctic Ocean Sanctuary the largest protected area on Earth which would put the waters off-limits to the industrial fishing vessels currently sucking up the tiny shrimp-like krill, on which all Antarctic life relies.

In 1990, the Voyager 1 space probe looked back at Earth from six billion kilometres away and took a historic selfie of our solar system. What it saw, according to renowned astrophysicist Carl Sagan, was a pale blue dot.

Our planet is a blue planet, echoed David Attenborough, in his opening words to the BBCs landmark Blue Planet series. With over 70% of our world covered by water, this is no exaggeration. Our oceans can be seen from across the solar system.

The majority of this water falls outside of national borders. In fact, almost half of our planet is a marine natural wonder outside the boundaries of flags, languages and national divisions. These vast areas cover 230 million square kilometres, and they belong to us all. To give a sense of scale, thats the size of every single continent combined, with another Asia, Europe and Africa thrown in for good measure. The size of our oceans may seem overwhelming. Our collective responsibility to protect them, however, should not.

It wasnt long ago that the oceans were thought to be too vast to be irrevocably impacted by human actions, but the effects of overfishing, oil drilling, deep sea mining, pollution and climate change have shown that humans are more than up to the task of imperilling the sea and the animals that live there.

humpback
A humpback whale dives for krill in Wilhelmina Bay, off the Antarctic Peninsula. The creeping expansion of industrial fishing is targeting the one species on which practically every animal in the Antarctic relies: krill. Photograph: Charles Littnam/WWF/EPA

All of us who live on this planet are the guardians of these environments, not only to protect the wildlife that lives in them, but because the health of our oceans sustains our planet and the livelihoods of billions of people.

Heres the good news. The tide of history is turning. We on the blue planet are finally looking seriously at protecting the blue bits. Just a few months ago, in a stuffy room far from the sea, governments from around the world agreed to start a process to protect them: an ocean treaty.

This ocean treaty wont be agreed until at least 2020, but in the meantime momentum is already building towards serious and binding ocean protection. Just last year a huge 1.5 million sq km area was protected in the Ross Sea in the Antarctic. In a turbulent political climate, it was a momentous demonstration of how international cooperation to protect our shared home can and does work.

Over the next two weeks, the governments responsible for the Antarctic are meeting to discuss the future of the continent and its waters. While limited proposals are on the table this year, when they reconvene in 12 months time they have a historic opportunity to create the largest ever protected area on Earth: an Antarctic Ocean sanctuary. Covering the Weddell Sea next to the Antarctic peninsula, it would be five times the size of Germany, the country proposing it.

The Antarctic is home to a great diversity of life: huge colonies of emperor and Adlie penguins, the incredible colossal squid with eyes the size of basketballs that allow it to see in the depths, and the largest animal on the planet, the blue whale, which has veins large enough for a person to swim down.

The creeping expansion of industrial fishing is targeting the one species on which practically every animal in the Antarctic relies: krill. These tiny shrimp-like creatures are crucial for the survival of penguins, whales, seals and other wildlife. With a changing climate already placing wildlife populations in the Antarctic under pressure, an expanding krill industry is bad news for the health of the Antarctic Ocean. Even worse, the krill industry and the governments that back it are blocking attempts at environmental protection in the Antarctic.

Ocean sanctuaries provide relief for wildlife and ecosystems to recover, but its not just about protecting majestic blue whales and penguin colonies. The benefits are global. Recovering fish populations spread around the globe and only now are scientists beginning to fully understand the role that healthy oceans play in soaking up carbon dioxide and helping us to avoid the worst effects of climate change. Sanctuaries encourage vital biodiversity, provide food security for the billions of people that rely on our oceans, and are essential to tackling climate change. Our fate and the fate of our oceans are intimately connected.

Creating the worlds largest ever protected area, in the Antarctic Ocean, would be a signal that corporate lobbying and national interests are no match for a unified global call for our political leaders to protect what belongs to us all. The movement to protect over half our planet begins now, and it begins in the Antarctic.

John Sauven is director of Greenpeace

Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/oct/13/penguins-starving-death-something-very-wrong-antarctic

The FDA has approved a blood sugar monitor that doesnt require a finger prick

Further proof the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has been warming up to modern technology — it has just approved the first continuous blood sugar monitor that doesn’t require the user to prick themselves over and over for a blood sample.

Today, the FDA cleared Abbot’s FreeStyle Libre Flash Glucose Monitoring System, a device that uses a small sensor wire inserted under the skin to determine glucose levels in adult diabetics. Another wand-like device is then waved over the sensor to measure and give a readout of those glucose levels.

This is a milestone move for the FDA as diabetes affects nearly 30 million people in the United States who currently have to test their blood sugar by pricking themselves several times throughout the day and every time they eat.

However, the idea for a prickless blood sugar monitor isn’t new. Tech companies have increasingly shown an interest in the massive diabetics market over the past few years. Apple is rumored to be working on such a device and its CEO Tim Cook has even been spotted wearing a possible prototype that could connect to the Apple Watch.

Other companies endeavor to build something similar, including Glucowise, which has a device still under development.

However, it seems it’s not so easy to create a needleless blood sugar detector. Google tried to build a contact lens that could detect glucose but it seems the project has gone nowhere since drug company Novartis licensed the tech in 2014. Another FDA-approved device for glucose monitoring without the prick called the GlucoWatch was approved in the early 2000’s, but consumers found it cumbersome and it happened to cause a bad rash in some.

But there’s new hope today that the Freestyle monitor has worked out all the kinks. The device is intended for those 18 and older and, after a 12-hour start-up period, can be worn for up to 10 days, according to a statement on the FDA’s website.

“The FDA is always interested in new technologies that can help make the care of people living with chronic conditions, such as diabetes, easier and more manageable,” said FDA spokesperson Donald St. Pierre. “This system allows people with diabetics to avoid the additional step of finger stick calibration, which can sometimes be painful, but still provides necessary information for treating their diabetes—with a wave of the mobile reader.”

Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2017/09/28/the-fda-has-approved-the-first-blood-sugar-monitor-that-doesnt-require-a-finger-prick/

Patients ‘dying alone in hospitals’

Image copyright dszc

Patients are dying alone on hospital wards because staff do not have enough time to care for them, nurses say.

The mounting pressure across the UK is also leading to medicines being given late and patients being left in pain.

The issues have been brought to light after the Royal College of Nursing canvassed front-line staff about their experiences of their last shift.

But ministers said despite the concerns raised it was investing in nursing to ensure there were enough staff.

The numbers working in the NHS have increased since 2010, but the RCN maintains this has not been enough to keep pace with demand.

A report earlier this year by the union found one in nine posts were vacant.

Some 30,000 staff, including midwives and health care support workers from across the UK, took part in this new online research.

The RCN described some of the stories as “desperately sad”.

‘Out of my depth’

Staff revealed how they had ended up parachuted into departments they were unfamiliar with to provide emergency cover at the last minute.

For example, one nurse described how care had been compromised when cardiac nurses were sent to a stroke unit.

Another nurse, who works on an elderly care ward, said she felt “useless, unsafe and out of my depth” when she was sent to A&E.

Image copyright Science Photo Library
Image caption Some 30,000 nurses recounted their experiences with some saying they end their shifts in tears

Others described how the demands on them had compromised care and left them in tears after their shift.

And there were reports of situations where patients had died alone on their watch because they simply did not have time to do everything that was needed.

The RCN said it knew of a number of hospitals which had been forced to rope in volunteers to sit with patients at the end of life.

Among the other problems highlighted were:

  • Medicines for sepsis, diabetes and Parkinson’s not being given on time
  • Patients being left in pain because nurses were too busy
  • Child patients going without food as staff had to prioritise treatment
  • Patients not being moved, putting them at risk of bed sores
  • Patients left in corridors because all the beds were full
  • Community staff complaining they were not able to do everything asked of them

One nurse told the RCN: “I often go home in tears. I love being a nurse but I feel I am unable to do my job properly.”

The nurses all took part on an anonymous basis.

Image caption Former nursing director Chris Perry believes the staffing situation has reached crisis point

But one nurse who was willing to be named was Chris Perry, a former director of nursing in the south-west of England who retired earlier this year.

She said the stories in the report were “sadly all too familiar”.

She described how she found herself having to “scrabble around” trying to find staff to fill gaps and said despite being willing to pay the most expensive agency prices, she could still not fill rotas.

She said it had now reached “crisis” point.

“We are seeing patient care suffer,” she added.

The RCN said more than a third of those who took part in the online survey in May reported having to leave elements of patient care undone because of a lack of time, while two-thirds worked extra time unpaid.

RCN general secretary Janet Davies said: “When this many professionals blow the whistle, they cannot be overlooked.”

But the Department of Health, which is responsible for the health service in England, said it was investing in nursing.

It pointed out the numbers in training are increasing – there will be another 10,000 more nurses by 2020 – while the overall number on wards had increased over the past seven years.

“We are helping the NHS to make sure it has the right staff, in the right place, at the right time to provide safe care,” a spokeswoman added.

The Scottish government said it had committed to enshrining safe staffing in law and creating about 2,600 extra nursing and midwifery training places over the next four years.

Scottish Health Secretary Shona Robison said: “The link between safe and sustainable staffing levels and high quality care is well established.

“Scotland has led the UK in the development of nursing and midwifery workload and workforce planning tools, ensuring we have the right number of staff, with the right skills, in place.”

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Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-41433159

Here Are Your Weekend Horoscopes For October 6-8th

It’s Friday, and you know what that means: It’s the freakin’ weekend. But how should you spend the weekend? Should you spend it sippin’ on Coke and rum, screaming “so what I’m drunk” to anyone who dares question you? Should you spend it asleep? Read your weekend horoscope to find out, and then get drunk anyway because we know that’s what you’re gonna do no matter what the stars say. 

Aries

Work got you down, Aries? Like, more than usual? After a summer of easy living and minimal office hours, it can be hard to get back into the swing of things. But you also don’t want to be that lazy asshole who is very obviously sitting at her desk taking Buzzfeed quizzes all day. What’s a girl to do? Use this weekend to decompress as much as humanly possible. You need to walk into work fresh-faced, bushy-tailed, and ready to do work on Monday, which means Saturday and Sunday need to be as tranquil as humanly possible. In general, make any off time an oasis to motivate yourself to get through the day.

Taurus

You know the saying work hard, play hard, Taurus? Well, it only applies if you keep up both ends of the bargain. Your work has left a little to be desired these past few weeks, which isn’t really being aided by the amount of playing you’re doing. Let this weekend serve as a detox of sorts: Cut the alcohol, maybe start sleeping again, see how a book treats you. You know, fun, peaceful stuff. Feel free to go hard on the partying once you get your work balance back to where it used to be.

Gemini

Things aren’t always going to go your way, Gemini. I know that can be hard to hear, seeing as how you demand almost the exact opposite, but this is going to be a weekend of tough truths. Our advice? Roll with the punches, and supplement with vodka when necessary. If it gets to be too much, just remove yourself from the equation and hide yourself away. There’s no shame in bowing out when you’ve had too much.

Cancer

Your life has been a whirlwind of movement and activity these past few weeks, Cancer, but it’s time to get back into the swing of things. Step one of resuming a normal life: Reconnect with your friends. It’s been long enough that you may have some difficulty recognizing each other, but it’s nothing an extended happy hour can’t fix. Once you’re back with your people and feeling grounded, it’ll be easier to move on to righting the rest of your life.

Leo

This weekend you’ll be presented with the opportunity to widen your circle and interact with some people that you typically wouldn’t. Sure, this sounds like a recipe for disaster on about 100 different levels, but armed with some solid allies and a little alcohol, there’s no harm in moving outside your comfort zone. It’s nice to branch out every once in a while, if anything to remind ourselves why we steadfastly avoid it every other weekend of the year.

Virgo

This is a weekend to take things easy, Virgo. While you’re not necessarily in hot water at the moment, one wrong step could put you into a very precarious situation with more than one person in your life. Your best bet is navigating this weekend carefully, opting to stay under the radar when possible. Things will ease up in the next couple weeks, but it would behoove you to tread lightly until then.

Libra

It’s birthday season, Libra! Congrats on making it to the most important time of the year. Your only job this weekend, and for the next couple weeks tbh, is to be as extra as possible. None of your friends can be mad, because those bitches will do the exact same thing when it’s their turn. Let the “treat yo’self” mentality start this weekend, as if you don’t live the rest of the year in the exact same way.

Scorpio

What’s good, Scorpio? Certainly not your luck. There’s just been something about the start of this month that has truly fucked with you, and you haven’t been able to catch a break all week. The good news: It’ll pass. The bad news: Not before the end of this weekend. We all have off-periods from time to time, it’s nothing to freak out about. But maybe try and avoid any high-stress situations this weekend in the hopes of flying under the radar until things turn around for you.

Sagittarius

Looking for a change, Sagittarius? It’s obvious you’re feeling restless, but the question is what are you trying to accomplish here? Fall is a great time for new starts, so if you’re looking to turn over a new leaf, this would be the perfect weekend to start. Use the next two days to get introspective af. Drink some tea, take some walks, sit on rocks and gaze into the distance. Whatever it takes to get you into decision-making mode, do it. You’re going to be making some big moves, be sure to take it seriously.

Capricorn

It’s time to start taking better care of yourself, Capricorn, in literally every sense of the world. You’ve taken a bit of a tumble off the self-care wagon, and this is the weekend you dive back on. Maybe you want to start eating healthier—spend the next two days recipe researching and meal prepping for the week ahead. Not feeling active enough? Get out there and enjoy the last of this weather before winter hits. Or take a mental health approach and spend your time adjusting your mindset. All that matters is that, come Monday, you feel like you’ve taken a real step to a happier, healthier you.

Aquarius

This is a big weekend for you, Aquarius. Some long-term plans are falling into place and you’re finally making real progress. Congrats! However, we know that you’re doing anything but celebrating. While some would be relieved by this by the idea of moving forward, you’re already knee-deep in analyzing and planning phase two. This weekend, give yourself a bit of a break from coordinating your life and let loose a little. It may be your last chance to blow off some steam for the foreseeable future, so kick back with a bottle of wine and leave the frantic shit for next Monday.

Pisces

October holds some real opportunity for you, Pisces. The planets are aligning for a productive month, but that doesn’t mean you can just sit back and coast. Doesn’t matter how generous Mercury is feeling if you spend the next three weeks on your ass. This weekend, take some time to establish a game plan for the things you want to get after this month. You’ll feel better knowing you’ve put some thought into something other than the season premiere of next week, and you’ll feel empowered Monday knowing you’ve got a plan moving forward.

 

Read more: http://www.betches.com/weekend-horoscopes-10-6-17

Patients to be questioned about sexuality

Image copyright Getty Images
Image caption NHS England advises sexuality is recorded during “face to face contact” with patients

Health professionals in England are to be told to ask patients aged 16 or over about their sexual orientation, under new NHS guidelines.

NHS England said no-one would be forced to answer the question but recording the data would ensure that “no patient is discriminated against”.

The guidance applies to doctors and nurses, as well as local councils responsible for adult social care.

A spokeswoman said: “It will have no impact on the care [people] receive.”

She added: “All health bodies and local authorities with responsibility for adult social care are required under the Equality Act to ensure that no patient is discriminated against.”

She said the information would help NHS bodies comply with equality legislation by “consistently collecting, only where relevant, personal details of patients such as race, sex and sexual orientation.”

‘Intrusive and offensive’

NHS England recommends health professionals – such as GPs and nurses – ask about a person’s sexual orientation at “every face to face contact with the patient, where no record of this data already exists”.

But the Family Doctor Association said it was “potentially intrusive and offensive” for GPs to monitor people’s sexuality.

Chairman Dr Peter Swinyard told the BBC that for older patients in particular, sexuality “doesn’t affect health outcomes or care”.

He said that GPs tend to know patients’ sexuality, or would ask, if it was relevant to their medical condition.

For example, patients at a sexual health clinic are likely to be asked, but not those attending a wart clinic.

He added: “Given the precious short amount of time a GP has with a patient, sexuality is not relevant.”

He said there were “relatively few medical conditions” that it affected.

Legal obligation

NHS England said the data was already being collected in many areas but that the new guidance makes it standard, and that it expects sexual orientation monitoring to be in place across England by April 2019.

Under the guidance, health professionals are to ask patients: “Which of the following options best describes how you think of yourself?”.

The options include heterosexual or straight, gay or lesbian, bisexual, other sexual orientation, not sure, not stated and not known.

NHS England said lesbian, gay and bisexual (LGB) people were “disproportionately affected” by health inequalities such as poor mental health and a higher risk of self-harm and suicide.

It said public bodies had a legal obligation to pay regard to the needs of LGB people under the Equality Act 2010.

“Collecting and analysing data on sexual orientation allows public sector bodies to better understand, respond to and improve LGB patients’ service access,” the guidance states.

‘Hugely important step’

Paul Martin, chief executive of Manchester’s LGBT Foundation, which worked with NHS England and others to develop sexual orientation monitoring, said he was “so proud” of the new standard.

He said earlier this week: “If we’re not counted, we don’t count.”

The launch of sexual orientation monitoring was a “hugely important step in the right direction” towards addressing LGB inequality in health and social care, he said.

However, the foundation’s good practice guide for healthcare professionals concedes that “some people will feel uncomfortable asking or being asked” about their sexuality.

It warns: “It would not be appropriate to ask someone’s sexual orientation out loud in a busy reception area.”

If a patient does not want to disclose their sexuality, “not stated” would be recorded as their response.

The guidance also says patients who are not able to declare their sexual orientation, for example if they require specialist mental capacity care, would be recorded as “not known”.

Former Conservative education secretary Nicky Morgan said that “what looks good on paper… actually when translated into real life becomes very intrusive”.

She told ITV’s Peston on Sunday: “Could it be appropriate in some circumstances about some conditions or problems that people come to see their doctors about?

“But clearly (for) the majority you wonder why on earth they need to know.”

Related Topics

Read more: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-41625402

Apple and GE announce deep partnership

While Apple has had its share of enterprise partners in recent years including IBM, Cisco and SAP, today’s announcement that it will be working directly with GE feels a bit different with the two companies more closely intertwined than in previous deals.

Apple and GE have committed to build a set of development tools and to develop apps together using Apple’s design sensibility and deep understanding of iOS, but the deal doesn’t stop there. Apple’s sales team will also push the GE Predix platform with its industrial customers when it makes sense, and GE has committed to standardizing on the iPhone and iPad for its 330,000 employees, while offering the Mac as a computer choice. All of this adds up to a level of cooperation we have not seen in Apple’s previous enterprise partnerships.

For starters, the two companies announced an iOS software development kit (SDK) for GE’s Predix platform, which is a set of cloud services designed to help industrial customers track the health of the huge industrial equipment GE sells and services. It can help predict failures before they happen and bring down this expensive equipment such as jet engines, wind turbines and train locomotives.

The key here is that the new SDK gives both external developers and those inside GE the ability to build native apps on top of the Predix platform, allowing them to take advantage of the full Apple ecosystem whether that’s iBeacons, the internal gyroscope sensor inside iPhone or even augmented reality in the latest iPhones.

To prime that software development pump, GE has built a new Applications Performance Management case management app built on top of Predix. Using this tool, customers can see the health of their industrial equipment on an iPad and collaborate more easily, sharing information like last action taken, notes and photos; all designed to provide the data to make decisions in real time.

Susan Prescott, VP for apps, markets and services at Apple was clearly charged by the possibilities that this partnership brings. “For the first time, we’re unlocking incredible new potential for industrial workers by giving them access to native apps that tap the functionality of iOS devices in exciting ways. Now employees can make better informed decisions through the native capabilities of the apps right at their fingertips,” Prescott told TechCrunch.

She offers some examples of how this could work: “A technician can now use the iPhone’s built-in camera to capture a thermal image of a piece of equipment to diagnose an issue or iBeacons and built-in location services can push critical information to a nearby worker’s iPhone or iPad in real time to help quickly flag an issue. We’re essentially closing the feedback loop between the employee in the industrial environment and the analytics and data that’s stored in the cloud,” she said.

Surely GE, an industrial company that was launched by Thomas Edison in 1888 couldn’t be more different than Apple, a computer company launched almost a 100 years later in 1976, but there is more in common than you might imagine.

There are the strong charismatic and demanding founders in Steve Jobs and Edison. There was also an internal mission to change the world with technology. GE has done it with giant industrial equipment like wind turbines and airplane engines, while Apple has gone smaller with phones, computers and watches.

In recent years, GE has been making a hard push to modernize and this partnership is clearly part of that.

The SDK and the APM app will be available for download on October 26th as part of GE’s Mind + Machines conference.

Read more: https://techcrunch.com/2017/10/18/apple-and-ge-announce-deep-partnership/

In A World Of Doubt, Im Not Afraid To Have Faith

Allef Vinicius

he asks, his eyes looking intently into mine.

I look beyond him, to the cascading waves along the beach. This isn’t the first conversation I’ve had with someone about faith. This isn’t the first time I’ve been challenged, questioned, put in the (wonderful but difficult) place of explaining the unexplainable.

The water strikes against the sand at a furious pace. I watch the foam lick the shore then get swallowed back into the ocean again, cyclical, powerful.

The thing is, I can’t prove, with absolute experienced certainty, that the Bible stories are true. I can’t go back in time and walk alongside the prophets, the disciples, the people who lived during Jesus’ time and watch Him heal the sick and give sight to the blind. I can’t determine, for certain, whether Jonah was swallowed by the whale or if Moses really did stand before a burning bush. I can’t act like I’ve seen what I haven’t.

But, yet, I still know.

I know that I am surrounded by millions upon millions of people—imperfect, beautiful people with different genetic makeups and thoughts and feelings and hearts. I know that there is an ocean, a tide, a sun, a moon, a galaxy, science, atoms and cells. And even if we try to use science, even if we try to go back and explain how particles shifted together to create incredible things—I have to wonder where those particles came from?

Where did those tiny pieces of life begin if not created by a God?

And then I think of the miracles I’ve seen, of the incredible faith the people in my life have shown. I think of the near-accidents I’ve avoided, the people I’ve prayed for and alongside who suddenly gained health and healing that was impossible. I think of the stories that have survived generations and generations, filling people with truth and light. I think of the way a perfect being was sacrificed, and how, here we are, thousands upon thousands of years later, standing firm in these promises of a life beyond this earthly one.

No, I can’t stand here and say I’ve touched God. But I’ve touched a hand in prayer that made a current run through my skin. I’ve felt the presence of the Lord’s spirit while singing in church. I’ve watched people come together in love and joy. I’ve seen forgiveness and hope.

I’ve watched prayers get answered. I’ve listened to the faith of the Biblical times and how wild and radical they were to believe what was so out of the norm for their time. I’ve had encouragement when I’ve lost all hope and confidence when I could barely lift my head.

I’ve been reborn into a world that is far less hopeless, far less evil because of my faith.

And in a world so filled with sin and pain, desperation and loneliness, escapism and fear, I am not afraid to believe in something bigger than me. Something beautiful and life-changing and fulfilling and

In a world of doubt, I am not afraid to believe. I am not afraid to stand firm on the hope my Father has given me. I am not afraid to trust that He is with me, with us, wherever we wander.

In a world of doubt, I am not afraid to listen. To His truth, to the sermons that preach His goodness, to the stories of the Bible that tell of miracle after miracle, giving me hope.

It’s so easy to believe in the things you can see, in the tangible, in what lies right in front of your face. But true faith is trusting in what you cannot see, in reaching forward for the things just outside of your grasp.

True faith is choosing to accept that there are things you might not understand, might not be able to witness, or go back in time and experience, but that doesn’t make them any less real.

And so I will stand firm in the stories I’ve heard, in the experiences I’ve had, in the truth that has defined who I am and what I stand for, no matter what uncertainty tries to creep into my mind.

This is not a blind faith, but an obedient faith. And for my Father, my Savior, my Healer, I will stand and not waver.

There are far too many things of this world that are impermanent, that are broken, that are flawed and hopeless. My God is not one of them.

Read more: https://thoughtcatalog.com/marisa-donnelly/2017/10/in-a-world-of-doubt-im-not-afraid-to-have-faith/

Twitter blocks Republican campaign ad over claim about Planned Parenthood baby body parts

Twitter blocked a campaign ad for a Republican Senate candidate running to take Sen. Bob Corker’s seat in Tennessee that featured a false assertion that she was part of an effort that “stopped the sale of baby body parts.”

Rep. Marsha Blackburn worked on the Republican-run panel in the House of Representatives that investigated Planned Parenthood after secretly recorded videos claimed to show the women’s health organization providing fetal tissue to researchers.  

Twitter’s decision to block the ad, which the company made because it contained “an inflammatory statement,” will likely spark backlash among conservatives who already view Silicon Valley firms as hostile to their beliefs.

The videos Blackburn appears to reference were deemed to be manipulated. Planned Parenthood said the videos were deceptively edited.

Providing legal tissue to researchers is legal if no profit is made, and congressional investigations found no evidence of the organization making money off of the practice. Blackburn led a House panel that investigated the sale of fetal tissue but found it “makes a vanishingly small contribution to clinical and research efforts, if it contributes at all.” The panel recommended the federal government not fund research involving fetal tissue.

Twitter said the video was “deemed an inflammatory statement that is likely to evoke a strong negative reaction,” according to the Associated Press. The social media platform said Blackburn could run the rest of her ad if the portion of her claiming she stopped the sale of “baby body parts” were taken out of it.

The blocking by Twitter does not allow Blackburn to promote the video, but she can still share it on the social network as a normal tweet or on other platforms. Her campaign posted the video earlier on Monday. 

Blackburn responded to Twitter’s decision by calling on her supporters to join her in “standing up to Silicon Valley.”

In the ad, Blackburn shoots a gun and says she’s “100 percent pro-life,” carries a gun in her purse, and stands during the national anthem. 

Read more: https://www.dailydot.com/layer8/twitter-blackburn-video/