Dana and Christopher Reeve (Image Source: https://www.christopherreeve.org/about-us/christopher-and-dana)

By Taylor Smith

This year’s gala benefit for the Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation took place on Thursday, November 14 at Cipriani South Street in New York City.

The Christopher & Dana Reeve Foundation grew out of the community-driven Stifel Paralysis Research Foundation, which was founded in 1982 when Henry Stifel, a New Jersey high school student, was involved in a car accident that left him paralyzed at age 17. The organization evolved into the American Paralysis Association (APA). When actor Christopher Reeve was injured in a horseback riding accident in 1995, the APA was one of the first places that Reeve and his wife, Dana, sought support. By 1999, the APA and Christopher’s foundation united as the Christopher Reeve Foundation (Dana’s name was added to the moniker after her death in 2006). more

By Taylor Smith

November is still a fantastic time to find fresh fruits and vegetables at area farmers markets. Here are just a few to look for: more

Dr. Richard Besser, head of Princeton’s Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, is making a difference

By Wendy Greenberg | Photo courtesy of Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

Dr. Richard Besser, a pediatrician and head of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), has volunteered in a clinic in every place he has lived.

Seeing children once a week at the Henry J. Austin Center in Trenton brings health inequity into focus. There, in Trenton, the life expectancy for children is 73 years. In Princeton, the life expectancy for the same-age child is 87 years.

The clinic grants a window, he said, “into the lives of children, many of whom have profound barriers to health, children growing up in very different circumstances than the children in my hometown of Princeton.”

At a New York City health center, Besser met a grandmother who knows her grandchildren needs daily physical exercise, but was concerned about the safety of playing outdoors. He met a youngster whose asthma attacks were triggered by environmental contaminants in the family’s apartment. At the Trenton clinic, he met a mother of a son with significant developmental disabilities who has been waiting two years for services that would help him.  more

By Taylor Smith

Dogs and cats are typically considered “senior” when they reach 7 years of age. Depending on individual health, older pets may require more frequent exams to monitor any changes in health status. more

Mike Bloomberg

By Taylor Smith 

“Philanthropy gives us a competitive advantage, we think, in recruiting and retaining talent. And I can tell you from personal experience, it is also good for the bottom line, as good a thing a company can do.” —Michael R. Bloomberg

Headquartered on Manhattan’s Upper East Side, Bloomberg Philanthropies was founded in 2006 with the purpose of directing funding and research to five major areas: the environment, public health, the arts, government innovation, and education. By “using data in new ways,” Bloomberg Philanthropies routinely shifts policies and advances progress, legislation, and public opinion. As an example, the organization has potentially saved countless lives by creating solutions proven to curb global tobacco use. According to bloomberg.org, “If left unchecked, tobacco use will kill one billion people this century.” more

By Taylor Smith

Housed in a former factory space at 240 North Union Street in Lambertville, DIG Yoga was founded in 2010 by Sue Elkind and Anime Jezzeny. DIG maintains a following among area residents who find that the architectural characteristics of the studio deepens their practice. Specifically, the light from the large windows that reverberates around the room and reflects beautifully off of the bamboo floors. more

Image Source: VisitPhilly.com

Coming November 23 & 24

By Taylor Smith

Ranking the nation’s top 10 in terms of large marathons, the Philadelphia Marathon typically attracts more than 30,000 runners, 60,000 spectators, and 3,000 volunteers. The fast and scenic course takes runners past historic landmarks, through urban neighborhoods, and along Philadelphia’s picturesque waterfront. Participants should keep in mind that the November race is a chilly one, with average starting line temperatures around 37 degrees F. The half marathon and 8K races will take place on Saturday, November 23.  The full marathon will begin at 7 a.m. on Sunday, November 24. more

Image Source: The Psychoanalytic Institute of the Contemporary Freudian Society

By Taylor Smith

Adolescents and college-age men and women are statistically at a high risk of experiencing the onset of a psychotic episode, particularly if they are genetically predisposed to mental illness. more

By Taylor Smith 

With children now back in school and an increased amount of time spent indoors, fall typically signals the start of cold and flu season. In reality, a person can contract the flu any time of year, but the CDC reports that influenza typically peaks between December and February. more

By Taylor Smith 

Coming soon to Washington Township is Row House, a first-class indoor rowing experience that challenges your endurance, strength, and fortitude.  more

Image Source: Smithsonian’s National Zoo & Conservation Biology Institute

By Taylor Smith

Many veterinary schools are now offering education tracks in wildlife medicine, which is an interdisciplinary study that involves work in wildlife rehabilitation, wildlife medicine, and conservation medicine. Conservation medicine is concerned with looking at the interplay between environment and health. more

Krugman and Cheng at Labyrinth Books. (Photo courtesy of Labyrinth Books)

Uwe Reinhardt, Tsung-Mei Cheng, Paul Krugman, and the U.S. Health Care Crisis

By Donald Gilpin

Have you tried recently to obtain health insurance or choose a health care provider? Tried to find out the price for a procedure or surgery? Tried to understand the bill from your doctor or the statement from your insurance company?

More critically, have you been unable to afford a necessary surgery or crucial prescription in this wealthy country, where health care costs so much more and delivers so much less than the health care systems of every other advanced country?

“Confusion, ignorance, and misinformation are rampant out there,” said Princeton University Research Scholar Tsung-Mei Cheng, speaking with Nobel Prize-winning economist Paul Krugman at an April 30 Labyrinth Books event featuring the recently published Priced Out: The Economic and Ethical Costs of American Health Care, written by Cheng’s late husband Uwe E. Reinhardt, renowned health policy expert and Princeton University economics professor.

Emphasizing Reinhardt’s drive to combat the chaos, inefficiency, and, inequity surrounding health care in the U.S., Cheng, one of the world’s top experts on health care systems, argued that the real debate, and all the controversy over the Affordable Care Act (ACA, also known as Obamacare), though “conducted in the jargon of economics and Constitutional federal-state relations,” is not about economics and the Constitution at all.

“The heart of the debate,” for Cheng and for Reinhardt, “is a long-simmering argument over the following question on distributive social ethics: To what extent should the better off members of society be made to be their poorer and sick brothers’ and sisters’ keepers in health care?” she said. “That is the question. Social ethics was a big thing for Uwe.”

Health care could be the key issue in the 2020 election. Voters have consistently indicated that affordable health care is a priority, and health care reform bills continue to be debated in Congress.

The ACA, despite numerous court and legislative challenges, is still in effect, and Medicare and Medicaid continue to be popular. Health insurance is also available for most employees through their workplaces.

As the 2020 election approaches, Republicans are still calling for the repeal of the ACA, with few indications of how they would replace it. Democratic presidential candidates favor a range of proposals from single-payer (“Medicare for all”), a government-operated program like that of Canada and the United Kingdom; to various plans to improve on the ACA, including public option alternatives in which the private marketplace would be bolstered by some sort of lower-cost, public-sponsored insurance for those who cannot afford the market price for quality insurance. more

By Taylor Smith 

When considering health and “fitness,” many people look to the scale for answers and stop there. New research suggests that metabolic health is the true marker, not only for determining a healthy BMI (body mass index), but also for significantly lowering one’s risk of heart disease, diabetes, stroke, and the onset of dementia. more

An iconic course through the heart of historic Princeton

By Taylor Smith 

The 7th annual Princeton Half Marathon will take place on Sunday, November 3, 2019. Runners will follow a 13.1-mile course that winds through Princeton University, Battlefield State Park, and the Institute for Advanced Study and past Lake Carnegie, Einstein’s home, and other stately Princeton residences including the homes of former presidents Grover Cleveland and Woodrow Wilson.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Jump, swing, fly, and tackle 18 obstacles and 3.1 miles of mud at MuckFest New Jersey in Somerset on Saturday, July 20 at 9 a.m. Presented locally by Horizon Blue Cross Blue Shield, MuckFest New Jersey is a high-octane obstacle course from start to finish.  more

By Taylor Smith 

NJ Sharing Network is a nonprofit organization dedicated to the recovery and placement of donated organs and tissues for those in need of a life-saving transplant. According to its website, nearly 4,000 New Jersey residents are in need of a transplantation. The organization operates 24 hours a day, 365 days a year and is staffed by a team of more than 150 highly-trained and dedicated advocates.  more

By Taylor Smith 

Colorectal cancer is a cancer that starts in the colon or the rectum. Cells in nearly all parts of the body can become cancerous, but most colorectal cancers start with growths on the inner lining of the colon or rectum, called polyps. Some types of polyps change into cancer over time and others never become cancerous. Neal Luppescu, MD, a gastroenterologist at Summit Medical Group explains, “There are numerous risk factors doctors have identified that affect your risk of developing colon cancer. The most important thing is to schedule a colonoscopy screening.” more

By Taylor Smith

Summer is a time when kids can spend their days outside the confines of a classroom and instead participate in playdates, swimming adventures, travel, camp, and exploration. It provides a wonderful opportunity for children to grown cognitively and emotionally without the confines of a regimented schedule. However, it can also be a time when children are exposed to new germs, risks, and illnesses. Here are a few tips for ensuring a healthy and happy summer for your family. more

By Taylor Smith 

Summertime in New Jersey is cause for celebration, and the warmer temperatures and bucolic surroundings encourage many residents to venture outdoors. The Mercer and Hunterdon county areas are home to state parks, meadows, fields, untouched forests, and a vast trail system tracing the Delaware River. However, one thing to be conscious of is the plethora of ticks.  more

By Taylor Smith 

The recent measles outbreak has sparked much discussion over vaccinations, particularly as they apply to children. What some people may not realize is that there are a variety of vaccines recommended for adults as well. Childhood vaccines wear off over time and factors like your age, job, lifestyle, and degree of travel can indicate an increased risk for certain preventable diseases. And the CDC states that older, hospitalized adults have immune systems similar to newborn babies, making them particularly vulnerable to infections.  more