Wisconsin Rapids TribuneColumn: Public health investments save money
National Public Health Week is April 7 to 13, and the Wood County Health Department would like to take this opportunity to remind you of the important work local health departments do to assure safe, healthy communities. Public health is the practice of preventing disease and injuries and promoting good health among groups of people, from small communities to entire countries. Public health professionals use policy changes and research strategies to understand issues like infant mortality and chronic diseases.

Tech CrunchHHS Secretary Sebelius: HealthCare.Gov ‘Definitely Saw The Galifianakis Bump’
When Obamacare passed the 6 million-person sign-up mark, we pointed, with our tongues half-cheeked, to President Obama’s Between Two Ferns appearance with Zach Galifianakis. Turns out we were mostly on point. Recently, U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius told the Huffington Post that the government “definitely saw that Galifianakis bump.” Certainly we’ve known for some time that the Two Ferns segment was popular, and that at least on the first day the clip was live, sent traffic to the Healthcare.gov website. To have the government reaffirm its importance among a wider set of outreach efforts underscores the importance of Internet video, and the shifting demographics in terms of what people of disparate generations turn to for news. Sebelius told the Post, “As a mother of two 30-something sons, I know they’re more likely to get their information on ‘Funny or Die’ than they are on network TV.”

CNN MoneyWhat we know – and don’t know – about Obamacare
Obamacare open enrollment is drawing to close, though that doesn’t mean the fervor over health care reform will subside anytime soon.Americans have until the end of Monday to sign up for health insurance on the Obamacare exchanges for 2014. However, those that start their applications but run into technical trouble that prevents them from picking a plan Monday will have a grace period to complete the process. Their coverage will begin May 1.Applicants ran into problems midday Monday when a technical issue temporarily blocked new users from creating accounts and picking plans. More than 100,000 people were using healthcare.gov at the same time, said a spokeswoman for the Department of Health and Human Services.

New York PostUnderstanding – and preventing – suicide
The US/UK financial industry has seen eight high-profile suicides in 2014, and it’s only March. You can see why Goldman Sachs, Morgan Stanley and nearly two dozen banks and other financial firms have joined the City Mental Health Alliance, a London-based group trying to improve the mental well-being of financial professionals. Some banks are also reportedly forcing junior employees to take a day off every once in a while, in hopes this may improve their mental health. There is plenty of reason to praise these efforts, but the fact of the matter is that we have no idea what caused these men to kill themselves.

Miami HeraldLet Vivek Murthy become the ‘nation’s doctor’
The U.S. Senate should confirm Dr. Vivek Murthy to the post of surgeon general. Murthy is a former emergency room doctor and strong advocate of sound, commonsense health policies. He founded Doctors for America, a national organization committed to expanding access to affordable health care. He has the support of an array of well-respected medical and public health organizations, ranging from the American Public Health Association to the American Cancer Society and the American Academy of Pediatrics. There is no reason that Murthy shouldn’t be swiftly confirmed to become “the nation’s doctor.” Yet, unfortunately, Murthy is facing strong opposition from the National Rifle Association for his support of limited gun safety measures — a position in line with the views of many millions of Americans.

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