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How to Get Heart Patients to Take Their Pills? Give Them Just One.

By Roni Caryn Rabin, The New York Times  

Although most people living with heart disease understand their health is constantly at risk, many of those individuals fail to adhere to their extensive medication regimen — a regimen that often includes taking multiple different pills many times throughout the day. According to a recent study in the New England Journal of Medicine, the solution may lie in prescribing heart disease patients one pill, known as a polypill, that combines a blood-pressure medication, a cholesterol-lowering drug and aspirin. The study, which followed nearly 2,000 people who had a heart attack in the prior six months, found that those who received the polypill adhered to their doctor’s instructions and experienced fewer poor outcomes, such as a heart attack or stroke compared to the control group. The FDA has not yet approved the polypill for distribution in the United States, however, researchers plan to submit the results of this study in an effort to gain approval. 

— by Andrew Feld

How the Pandemic Shortened Life Expectancy in Indigenous Communities

 By Simon Romero, Roni Caryn Rabin, and Mark Walker, The New York Times   

As the rest of the developing world maintains the same life expectancy despite Covid, Native Americans have seen the largest number of deaths per ethnic group in the United States and a decrease in 6 years of life expectancy in 2022. These tribal nations were already at high risk for diabetes, respiratory diseases, and heart diseases due to their poor basic living conditions, such as the scarcity of water and polluted air. Not only did they face poverty, but also bigotry and neglect from the United States government that led to a lack of health funding and necessities, resulting in a discriminatory system designed for Native Americans.  

by Emily Kim 

The Hunt for Big Hail

By Oliver Whang, The New York Times  

Compared to other major weather events, hail is rarely a center of attention. But in recent years, the sizes of hailstones in countries across the globe have broken records, and are a growing cause for concern. Hailstorm frequency in the US is at its lowest in 10 years, but according to a 2021 assessment, the cost of damages resulting from these storms is at its greatest ever, $16.5 billion in 2021 alone. As the threats of property damage, injuries, and crop loss rise, scientists are searching for an explanation. Unfortunately, some aspects of hailstorms are quite difficult to replicate in a laboratory setting, so on-site studies are the best way to learn more about these phenomena. But with limited resources for travel, scientists must turn to civilians as a means of gathering information, which often results in flawed or inaccurate data.

by Sammy Ramacher

Items contributed by: Andrew Feld, Emily Kim, and Sammy Ramacher