Health and Safety

Profit and Probability - Is Fukushima Another Ford Pinto

April 2, 2011
By Bob Hennelly

The collapse of the World Trade Center towers, the failure of New Orleans levies during hurricane Katrina, and the destruction of the half dozen Fukushima General Electric boiling water nuclear reactors are all monuments to "good enough" engineering.

Republicans Plan OSHA Budget Cut

March 7, 2011
By Brian Naylor

Congressional Republicans are promising to scrub the government for what they say are "job killing" regulations. One of their primary targets is the Occupational Safety and Health Administration, or OSHA.

Health and Wellness Series -  Brought to You by EmpireBlue Cross BlueShield 

Tom Canty, Vice President & General Manager for Labor, Government & Special Accounts at Empire BlueCross BlueShieldFebruary 11, 2011

Finding Dr. Right

It’s 9:00 at night, your child has a bad sore throat, and you don’t have a regular doctor you can call. What do you do?  Hopefully if you are reading this now, you can prevent it from happening.
Choosing the right doctor can make a big difference as to whether or not you and your family gets the kind of health care you want and need. Some people look through the Yellow Pages, others ask their friends for recommendations, many go online and check their insurance company’s provider directory. You should probably do all three.

Medicaid Redesign Team Holding Hearings

January 24, 2011

The New York State Medicaid Redesign Team, created by Governor Andrew M. Cuomo is conducting regional public hearings across the State. New York State Medicaid Director Jason Helgerson serves as executive director of the Medicaid Redesign Team. Co-chairs are Michael Dowling, President and CEO of North Shore LIJ Health system, and Dennis Rivera, former Chair of SEIU Healthcare and currently Senior Advisor to the International President of SEIU. The Team must submit its first report with findings and recommendations to the Governor by March 1st for consideration during the budget process. Suggestions may be submitted on the Medicaid Redesign web site at:

Safety Net Hospitals

Prepared by Judy Wessler, Director, Commission of Public Health
January 24, 2010

Follow-up data to identify those hospitals, at least in 2008, that we would label as safety-net hospitals in New York City.  This data was prepared by the Committee of Interns & Residents and taken from the 2008 Institutional Cost Reports that all hospitals in the state are required to file.  CPHS has proposed that hospitals with 50% uninsured and Medicaid patients be labeled as safety-net hospitals and treated more favorably in Medicaid reimbursement. 

Statement of Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg on President Obama’s Signature of the 9/11 Health and Compensation Act into Law

January 3, 2011
“I want to thank President Obama for signing the James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act into law. The September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks were an attack on America by a foreign enemy, and addressing its health impacts is a national duty. The tenth anniversary of the attacks is later this year and I am encouraged that our elected representatives in Washington came together and stood by those who were there for America in its hour of greatest need. In addition to President Obama, I want to thank all of those involved in the passage of this bill, especially Senators Schumer and Gillibrand; and Representatives Maloney, King, and Nadler.”

Bloomberg Statement on 9/11 Bill

“I want to congratulate and thank the House of Representatives for putting aside their differences and finding common ground on one of the most fundamental issues of justice facing our nation today. In addition to those I thanked earlier today ­– Representatives Maloney, King, and Nadler and the entire New York delegation; Senators Schumer and Gillibrand; responders, survivors, and their family members; labor and civic leaders; and great New Yorkers like Rudy Giuliani and Jon Stewart – I want to thank Speaker Pelosi and Minority Leader Boehner for supporting those who were there for America in its hour of greatest need.”

The Eye Opener - POLYCARBONATE LENSES…….what are they?

Eye Opener




DPolycarbonate lensesecember 19, 2010

Polycarbonate lenses are thinner and lighter than traditional plastic eyeglass lenses.  They are up to 10 times more impact-resistant than regular plastic lenses.  Polycarbonate lenses make a good choice for children’s glasses, sports eyewear and certainly industry safety glasses.  In addition, they are also used for rimless eyewear designs where the lenses are attached with drill mountings.
Polycarbonate lenses block 100 percent of the sun’s UV rays.  This built-in protection is provided by the lens material itself.  Polycarbonate lenses are actually constructed out of material that is identical to what is called “bulletproof glass”; however, it is a relatively soft material while extremely impact resistant.  Since the polycarbonate lens is flexible, a scratch-resistant coating is recommended to protect against surface scratches.  Today’s scratch coatings can make the surface of polycarbonate lenses hard which will protect them against scratches.

The Eye Opener - What is Monovision……

Eye Opener

 Eye ExamNovember 22, 2010

Monovision is the name given to the art and science of fitting contact lenses on a patient who has developed presbyopia.  Presbyopia is the unavoidable change in vision that usually occurs around 40 years of age.  This condition causes difficulty in reading small print and focusing on near objects.  Most people are familiar with reading glasses, bifocals or progressive lenses as options for correcting presbyopia.  Another method of correcting presbyopia is known as “monovision”.  With monovision, one eye is fit with a distance lens (if needed) and the other eye is fit with a near lens.  The result will be clear vision for both distance and near.

Although it takes one or two weeks to adjust and adapt to monovision, some prefer it to reaching for reading glasses every time you need to read.

The Eye Opener - The ABC’s of Proper Eye Care


November 10, 2010

Makeup, lotions and hairspray may cause eye irritation or infection through improper use.  Here are some helpful tips.

Wash hands before applying any type of eye makeup.  Keep all makeup applicators such as brushes and pads clean.  Do not share makeup with anyone else being especially careful at store’s cosmetic counters.

While common sense dictates not to apply makeup while in a moving vehicle, many women put on eye makeup on their way to work or school in a moving bus, car or train? Not a good idea. One bump in the road may result in an eye injury such as a scratch on the cornea.

Health and Wellness Series:  Brought to You by EmpireBlue Cross BlueShield 

Tom Canty, Vice President & General Manager for Labor, Government & Special Accounts at Empire BlueCross BlueShieldOctober 20, 2010

What can you do to improve the health of your family and friends?

Do you recall hearing your mother -- at her wits end – telling you in her very sternest parent voice, “You’ll do it because I said you will”!  Well, it turns out she was wrong.  It’s far more likely, actually, that you would do what she did – not what she said.  Particularly when it comes to health.  In fact, new research shows that your own health behavior affects others’ behaviors.

You can determine your own “Health Footprint.”So what can you do to make sure that those you love act in the best interest of their health? You can start by assessing your own Health Footprint. 

Just log onto and answer a few simple questions.  Then, continue acting on your best health behaviors and take small steps to improve the worst.
As you begin to increase your personal health, those around you will too.

The Eye Opener- Test Your Optical IQ…

October 19, 2010

Which One Does NOT Apply

Reading Glasses
a.    Single Vision Lenses
b.    Used for Correcting Presbyopia
c.    May be Used for Distance or Near Vision

Harlem Doctors Fight to Revive Threatened Hospital

By Harrison Magee
Oct. 18, 2010

Physicians, union supporters, and concerned members of the community rallied at noon on Wednesday outside of Harlem Hospital to protest the ongoing staff and service cuts being made at the center, which is the city's flagship public medical facility.  The action, which gathered hundreds of protesters, was organized by the Doctors’ Council of SEIU, the bargaining unit representing the nearly 200 physicians on staff at the HHC.

The Eye Opener - Visual Display Terminals

October 4, 2010

Computer Eye Strain in the Work Place……..

With so many of us using computers at work, computer eye strain has become one of the major office-related optical health complaints.  These problems can cause physical fatigue, decreased productivity and increased work errors.  Here are some steps you can take to reduce computer eye strain.

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