Report sets research priorities for Biden’s cancer moonshot

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Big Data and data analytics are major agenda items of the moonshot program.

… The moonshot report recommends creating a national network to give more patients around the country access to tumor profiling. Those patients also would be able to share their genetic data with researchers, and volunteer for cutting-edge clinical trials of treatments that match their genetics.

Reference: Report sets research priorities for Biden’s cancer moonshot

Firms may violate workers’ medical privacy with big data

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It may be time to take a step back and re-evaluate how U.S. companies are using big data gathered in employee wellness and other health care analytics programs.

… In an editorial posted Tuesday in JAMA Internal Medicine, some Texas researchers argue that use of big data to predict the “risk” of a woman getting pregnant may be crossing a line. It could exacerbate long-standing patterns of employment discrimination and paint pregnancy as something to be discouraged.

… The concern arose after reports of how one health care analytics company launched a product that can track, for example, if a woman has stopped filling birth-control prescriptions or has searched for fertility information on the company’s app. And women may not even be aware that such data is being collected.

Reference: Firms may violate workers’ medical privacy with big data

Expanding Medicaid may lower all premiums

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This is a very good data insight.

… The Obama administration for years has been pleading with states to expand their Medicaid programs and offer health coverage to low-income people. Now it has a further argument in its favor: Expansion of Medicaid could lower insurance prices for everyone else.

… By comparing counties across state borders, and adjusting for several differences between them, the researchers calculated that expanding Medicaid meant marketplace premiums that were 7 percent lower.

Reference: Expanding Medicaid may lower all premiums

Study links fracking industry wells to increased risk of asthma attacks

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People with asthma who live near bigger or larger numbers of active unconventional natural gas wells operated by the fracking industry in Pennsylvania are 1.5 to four times likelier to have asthma attacks than those who live farther away, new research from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health suggests.

Reference: Study links fracking industry wells to increased risk of asthma attacks

Mosquito egg collectors of the U.S., unite

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This article highlights the importance of data in decision making, as well as a brand new approach of government crowd-sourcing.

“We don’t have a lot of data — good, solid data,” said John-Paul Mutebi, an entomologist with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Volunteers now are needed to collect mosquito eggs in their communities and upload the data to populate an online map, which in turn will provide real-time information about hot spots to help researchers and mosquito controllers respond.

Reference: Mosquito egg collectors of the U.S., unite

Police try to predict who will shoot or be shot

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In this city’s urgent push to rein in gun and gang violence, the Chicago Police Department is keeping a list. Derived from a computer algorithm that assigns scores based on arrests, shootings, affiliations with gang members and other variables, the list aims to predict who is most likely to be shot soon or to shoot someone.

Reference: Police try to predict who will shoot or be shot

Toyota lends expertise to help food bank serve more than ever

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It is another amazing story about how lean and six sigma benefits a local food bank.

A South Dallas food pantry now serves 60 percent more people in need thanks to tips from an unlikely new partner: a car company. That all changed with help from North Texas newcomer Toyota.

Reference: Toyota lends expertise to help food bank serve more than ever