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FILE - Ellen Isaacs, left, and Lee Nuss, center, both from Florida, hold each other and sing a song of remembrance for Randall M. Nuss, Lee&rsquo;s husband, during a protest with other advocates for opioid victims outside the U.S. Department of Justice, Dec. 3, 2021, in Washington. Families who lost loved ones to overdose are divided over OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma&rsquo;s plan to settle lawsuits over the toll of opioids with governments. It could provide billions to address an overdose epidemic and pay some victims. But it would also protect members of the Sackler family who own the company from future lawsuits.

The year in opioid settlements: 5 things you need to know

FILE - Ellen Isaacs, left, and Lee Nuss, center, both from Florida, hold each other and sing a song of remembrance for Randall M. Nuss, Lee&rsquo;s husband, during a protest with other advocates for opioid victims outside the U.S. Department of Justice, Dec. 3, 2021, in Washington. Families who lost loved ones to overdose are divided over OxyContin maker Purdue Pharma&rsquo;s plan to settle lawsuits over the toll of opioids with governments. It could provide billions to address an overdose epidemic and pay some victims. But it would also protect members of the Sackler family who own the company from future lawsuits.

December 31, 2023, 5:54am Health

This year, about $1.5 billion has landed in state and local government coffers from court settlements made with more than a dozen companies that manufactured, sold, or distributed prescription painkillers and were sued for their role in fueling the opioid crisis. Read story

In this image provided by the U.S. Air Force, Airman 1st Class Jackson Ligon, 341st Missile Maintenance Squadron technician, examines the internals of an intercontinental ballistic missile during a simulated electronic launch Minuteman test Sept. 22, 2020, at a launch facility near Malmstrom Air Force Base in Great Falls, Mont. The Air Force has determined that cancer data recorded in health records of service members who worked with the nation's nuclear missiles warrants a further review, as part of a massive testing and cleanup effort it launched in response to reports that many who served are now ill. (Tristan Day/U.S.

The Air Force said its nuclear missile capsules were safe. But toxic dangers lurked, documents show

In this image provided by the U.S. Air Force, Airman 1st Class Jackson Ligon, 341st Missile Maintenance Squadron technician, examines the internals of an intercontinental ballistic missile during a simulated electronic launch Minuteman test Sept. 22, 2020, at a launch facility near Malmstrom Air Force Base in Great Falls, Mont. The Air Force has determined that cancer data recorded in health records of service members who worked with the nation's nuclear missiles warrants a further review, as part of a massive testing and cleanup effort it launched in response to reports that many who served are now ill. (Tristan Day/U.S.

December 29, 2023, 7:58am Health

A large pool of dark liquid festering on the floor. No fresh air. Computer displays that would overheat and ooze out a fishy-smelling gel that nauseated the crew. Asbestos readings 50 times higher than the Environmental Protection Agency’s safety standards. Read story

FILE - Dental assistants go over appointments at SmileDirectClub&rsquo;s SmileShop located inside a CVS store April 24, 2019, in Downey, Calif. SmileDirectClub is shutting down, just months after the struggling teeth-straightening company filed for bankruptcy, leaving existing customers in limbo. On Friday, Dec. 8, 2023, the company said it was unable to find a partner willing to bring in enough capital to keep the company afloat, despite a months-long search. (AP Photo/Jae C.

SmileDirectClub is shutting down. Where does that leave its customers?

FILE - Dental assistants go over appointments at SmileDirectClub&rsquo;s SmileShop located inside a CVS store April 24, 2019, in Downey, Calif. SmileDirectClub is shutting down, just months after the struggling teeth-straightening company filed for bankruptcy, leaving existing customers in limbo. On Friday, Dec. 8, 2023, the company said it was unable to find a partner willing to bring in enough capital to keep the company afloat, despite a months-long search. (AP Photo/Jae C.

December 29, 2023, 7:34am Business

Just months after filing for bankruptcy, SmileDirectClub announced it was shutting down its global operations and halting its teeth-aligner treatments. Read story

In this Friday, April 17, 2020, photo, a news story about the University of Washington Medicine department plays on a resident&#039;s television as a member of a team from UW Medicine arrives to take a nose swab sample as part of testing for the new coronavirus at Queen Anne Healthcare, a skilled nursing and rehabilitation facility in Seattle. More than 100 residents were tested during the visit, and the results for all were negative, according to officials. (AP Photo/Ted S.

Washington Department of Health cuts hundreds of jobs as federal COVID funds run out

In this Friday, April 17, 2020, photo, a news story about the University of Washington Medicine department plays on a resident&#039;s television as a member of a team from UW Medicine arrives to take a nose swab sample as part of testing for the new coronavirus at Queen Anne Healthcare, a skilled nursing and rehabilitation facility in Seattle. More than 100 residents were tested during the visit, and the results for all were negative, according to officials. (AP Photo/Ted S.

December 28, 2023, 10:47am Health

Washington’s Department of Health has cut over 300 employees who helped with the state’s pandemic response and hundreds more of these jobs are on the chopping block as federal COVID aid dries up. Read story

FILE - The U.S. Medicare Handbook is photographed in Washington, Nov. 8, 2018. Obesity drugs like Wegovy and Zepbound that are capturing the attention of celebrities and showing promising results in helping people shed pounds will stay out of reach for America&#039;s older adults. A decades-old law on the books bans Medicare from paying for weight loss drugs.

New weight loss drugs are out of reach for millions of older Americans because Medicare won’t pay

FILE - The U.S. Medicare Handbook is photographed in Washington, Nov. 8, 2018. Obesity drugs like Wegovy and Zepbound that are capturing the attention of celebrities and showing promising results in helping people shed pounds will stay out of reach for America&#039;s older adults. A decades-old law on the books bans Medicare from paying for weight loss drugs.

December 28, 2023, 9:40am Health

New obesity drugs are showing promising results in helping some people shed pounds but the injections will remain out of reach for millions of older Americans because Medicare is forbidden to cover such medications. Read story

A selection of eye drops line a shelf at a pharmacy in Los Angeles on Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2023. A series of recalls involving over-the-counter drops is drawing new attention to just how little U.S. officials know about the conditions at manufacturing plants on the other side of the world and the limited tools they have to force products off the market when there&#039;s a problem.

After recalls and infections, experts say safer eyedrops will require new FDA powers

A selection of eye drops line a shelf at a pharmacy in Los Angeles on Tuesday, Dec. 12, 2023. A series of recalls involving over-the-counter drops is drawing new attention to just how little U.S. officials know about the conditions at manufacturing plants on the other side of the world and the limited tools they have to force products off the market when there&#039;s a problem.

December 26, 2023, 9:49am Health

When you buy eyedrops at a U.S. store, you might assume you're getting a product made in a clean, well-maintained factory that’s passed muster with health regulators. Read story

The website for the company Ro is seen on a smartphone in New York on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2023. Online, direct-to-consumer health care has grown well beyond its roots mostly treating hair loss and acne or selling birth control pills. Companies like Hims &amp; Hers and Ro have started weight loss programs.

Subscription-based care moves beyond peddling birth control and helping with hair loss

The website for the company Ro is seen on a smartphone in New York on Thursday, Dec. 7, 2023. Online, direct-to-consumer health care has grown well beyond its roots mostly treating hair loss and acne or selling birth control pills. Companies like Hims &amp; Hers and Ro have started weight loss programs.

December 26, 2023, 7:26am Business

Need help losing weight or handling depression? How about a pill that lowers cholesterol and treats erectile dysfunction? Read story

A pharmacist administers a Moderna Spikevax COVID-19 vaccine at a drug store, Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2023, in Cypress, Texas. Fall 2023 vaccination season is in full swing, with health officials in the U.S. urging both an updated COVID-19 shot and flu vaccine for most everyone. New this year are vaccines for older adults and women in late pregnancy to guard against another virus named RSV.

Does the new COVID vaccine work against the variant now spreading? Who can get it now?

A pharmacist administers a Moderna Spikevax COVID-19 vaccine at a drug store, Wednesday, Sept. 20, 2023, in Cypress, Texas. Fall 2023 vaccination season is in full swing, with health officials in the U.S. urging both an updated COVID-19 shot and flu vaccine for most everyone. New this year are vaccines for older adults and women in late pregnancy to guard against another virus named RSV.

December 25, 2023, 12:52pm Health

There’s no big rush to get the new COVID-19 vaccine, according to health experts. Many patients are hesitant to get the shot for a variety of reasons, including vaccine fatigue, fear of side effects and the feeling that COVID is over. Read story

Elijah Jack, 1, looks up from his mobility chair, which was built as a donation by Tulane University students, at his home in New Roads, La., Thursday, Nov. 30, 2023. Tulane science and engineering students are making the second batch of mobility chairs for toddlers, that will eventually go to pediatric patients at Children&rsquo;s Hospital. Wheelchairs are expensive, and insurance won&rsquo;t cover the cost for children unless the child proves they can operate it independently.

Custom made by Tulane students, mobility chairs help special needs toddlers get moving

Elijah Jack, 1, looks up from his mobility chair, which was built as a donation by Tulane University students, at his home in New Roads, La., Thursday, Nov. 30, 2023. Tulane science and engineering students are making the second batch of mobility chairs for toddlers, that will eventually go to pediatric patients at Children&rsquo;s Hospital. Wheelchairs are expensive, and insurance won&rsquo;t cover the cost for children unless the child proves they can operate it independently.

December 25, 2023, 6:00am Health

At 19 months old, Elijah Jack, born with no femur bone in one leg and a short femur in the other, is unable to walk on his own like most toddlers his age. Another 19-month-old, Freya Baudoin, born prematurely at 28 weeks and delayed in her mobility, has finally taken… Read story

An entrance sign near the main gate at Howard University Oct. 25, 2021, in Washington, DC. Students have complained about mold and poor conditions in some dorm rooms and over 100 students have been staging a weeks-long protest to highlight the issues.

U.S. medical schools grapple with first admissions since end of affirmative action

An entrance sign near the main gate at Howard University Oct. 25, 2021, in Washington, DC. Students have complained about mold and poor conditions in some dorm rooms and over 100 students have been staging a weeks-long protest to highlight the issues.

December 24, 2023, 6:00am Health

American medical schools are confronting their first major challenge since the U.S. Supreme Court’s June decision to outlaw race-based college admissions. Read story