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HERITAGE FLORIDA JEWISH NEWS, JUNE 14, 2013 PAGE 7B By Israe121c.org If dogs can sniff out ex- plosives and narcotics, could they also be trained to detect cancer? Israeli internist Dr. Uri Yoel, 43, has demonstrated that dogs are indeed capable of differentiating between the scent of cancer cells and non-cancerous cells. "Our research proves that dogs can smell cancer cells in vitro [in lab cultures], and that different types of cancer share the same smell print," says Yoel, who practices at Soroka Medical Center in Beersheva and teaches at Ben-Gurion University of the Negev's Faculty of Health Sciences. News of the study has put a bit of a spotlight on the physi- cian, a modest 43-year-old BEERSHEVA, Israel-- Chronic exposure to rocket at- tacks launched from the Gaza Strip into Israel is causing an increase in severe adolescent violence, according to a new study by Ben-Gurion Uni- versity (BGU) of the Negev researchers. The study, published in the Journal oftheAmericanAcad- emy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (JAACAP), followed 362 Israeli adolescents from the southwestern Negev from 2008 to 2011, and con- (NewsUSA)--With wom- en generally outliving men, planning for long-term care becomes more urgent for them in their pre-retire- ment years. After all, while longevity definitely has its upside--including more time to enjoy travel and fam- ily-there's no denying its biggest potential downside- the increased risk of health problems that can make caring for oneself difficult. Today, seven in 10 nursing home residents are women. They also represent a whopping 76 percent of assisted living residents, according to the latest sta- tistics, and two-thirds of all home-care recipients. And that care isn't nec- essarily what many would consider "affordable"--un- less you're perhaps lucky enough to have the oppor- tunity to enroll in the likes of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program (FLTCIP). "Like other forms of health care, long-term care is expensive, and costs continually increase," says Paul Forte, CEO of Long Term Care Partners, which administers the FLTCIP. The program is specifically designed to help current and retired federal employees safeguard their retirement income and savings while maintaining their indepen- dence and avoiding reliance on their children. The most recent John Hancock Cost of Care Study puts the national average father of five who enjoys noth- ing more than a challenging desert hike. In 2002, he and his wife, Michal, moved with their two toddlers to Kfar Rafael, a Negev community where adults with special needs live together with foster families. The community sees to the well-being and development of these "villagers" within an in- tegrative social environment. Today, 120 people live at Kfar Rafaei: 52 villagers ages 21 to 75,11 foster parents with 19 children, and 27 young volunteers. Michal works with villagers in Kfar Rafael's weavery. Being around people with special needs is second nature to the Yoel kids, aged 14, 12, 10, 7 and Their father believes it brings out the softer side of their personalities. "For those born here, the setting is completely natural. Until age 10, my [older] chil- dren didn't know the word 'mentally retarded.' They just knew that some people need extra help," Yoel tells ISRAEL21c. "We didn't have to talk with them about it. It's their life." Even though Yoel does not officially work for the village, people regularly call him for medical care. "I know everyone and everyone knows me. I'm not the doctor of the village, but the doctor comes twice weekly and the rest of the time if there is an emergency of any kind, I take care of it," says Yoel, who was raised on Kibbutz Ramat Rachel in southern Jerusalem. Combining heart, hands ducted annual assessments of exposure to rocket attacks, symptoms of depression and anxiety, as well as acts of violence. "This is the first study to prospectively examine ado- lescents' internal and external symptoms due to exposure to rocket attacks over the course of several years," says profes- sor. Golan Shahar of BGU's Department of Psychology. Levels of severe violence, which were relatively low at the beginning of the study, have risen as a result of long-term exposure to rocket attacks, so much so that the rate of the increase in violent acts can now be predicted after each attack. "The main finding of our study was that prolonged exposure to rocket attacks predicted a steep increase in violent incidents reported by the adolescent partici- pants," says Shahar. "Some incidents resulted in physical fights that required medical treatment, as well as gang every woman cost of a licensed home health aide at $20 per hour, with private and semiprivate nursing home rooms going for $235 and $207, respec- tively, a day. Those costs aren't gen- erally covered by health plans such as Medicare, the Defense Department's TRICARE, TRICARE for Life or even the regular Federal Employees Health Benefits Program. And as for Medicaid, as Forte notes, "it covers long-term care only for those with very low income and assets, so the responsibility for paying may fall on you." Now suppose you're a woman who's eligible for the FLTCIP, but you haven't yet applied. Ask yourself these four questions: * Considering your health and family history, might you live a long life with health conditions that could hinder caring for yourself? Do you live alone? If you don't live alone, how might tending to you disrupt the professional and personal lives of others, and do you wish to be dependent on them? If you do live alone, will you have the resources not just to pay for care, but to also maintain a comfortable lifestyle? Established by an act of Congress in 2000 and overseen by the U.S. Office of Personnel Management, the program is tailored exclusively to meet the bud- getary and lifestyle needs of Seven inlOnursinghome residents arewomen. what's referred to as "the federal family." And as so often is the case with the federal workforce, the cost to enrollees is surprisingly affordable. How affordable? Well, there's a choice of four prepackaged plans that combine the most popular program features, with customized plans also available. So, say you're a 45-year- old woman who chooses the FLTCIP's most popular prepackaged plan (Plan B, with the 4 percent inflation rider). You'd pay a biweekly premium of $33.90--1ess than $68 per month, or slightly more than $2 a day--for protection that can save you thousands of dollars in future care costs. The program's consumer- friendly website lets you calculate the premium rate for your age and choice of plans (www.LTCFEDS.com/ and head His research project with cancer-sniffing dogs, com- pleted last year and soon to be published, has no connection to his fields of specialty, inter- nal medicine and endocrinol- ogy. "But it's important to do interesting things in your life," says Yoel. The project was done dur- ing the second half of his internal medicine residency at the suggestion of Dr. Pesach Shvartzman, head of Ben-Gurion's Sial Research Center for Family Medicine and Primary Care. "His son knew a dog trainer and they were talking about what he could do for the com- munity, so they looked for someone to help him," Yoel relates. "In medicine, it's hard to take a dream and take it fights, and arrests for violent crimes, carrying knives or other weapons." The findings have poten- tially global public health implications for healthy youth development in politically unstable regions, particularly within the Israeli-Palestinian context. "These findings should serve as a red flag for health care practitioners in civil areas afflicted by terrorism and political violence," Sha- hat says. to a practical, real-life level." The volunteer trainers read- ied two dogs for the research, using positive reinforcement to reward identification of cancer cells by scent. It was already known that can dogs can detect cancer with their noses. Their level of accuracy depends on their training. But Yoel wanted to find out whether the dogs are actually smelling the cancer cells or an odor from the body's physiological reaction to those cells. To answer that question, Yoel tested the trained dogs using cultured breast cancer cells, rather than human subjects. "We can say for sure they can differentiate between cancerous and non-cancerous cells, and that suggests there is a smell print for cancer itself since its metabolism is differ- ent," he says. Then, he tested the dogs' ability to sniff out lung and skin cancer cells, which they had not been trained to detect. Significantly, the canines got it right every time. "For me that is the most important finding, because for breast cancer we have mammography and for colon cancer we have colonoscopy but for lung cancer we have no screening test," says Yoel. "When discovered early, the prognosis for lung cancer is excellent, but usually it is not found until it is quite big." A screening test for lung cancer could potentially save many people at risk, especially smokers. Another Israeli company, BioView, is working toward that goal from a different approach. If a budget comes avail- able, Yoel says he'd be happy to pay the dog trainer to continue this line of research with cancer patients, but for now his plan is to finish his endocrinology residency and continue practicing medicine at the hospital as well as teaching. He relates that when he began university, he wasn't sure if he wanted to be a doc- tor, an architect or farmer. His wife helped him decide and he has no regrets. "I think it was a good decision. I chose internal medicine because it is the most broad--you must combine your heart, hands and head." rate), and view current and past informationalwebinars (www.LTCFEDS.com/webi- nar). Personal consultants can also walk you through the entire process, includ- ing plan design and applica- tions, by calling 1-800-582- 3337 or 1-800-843-3557. Again, not everyone is eligible for FLTCIE and cer- tain medical conditions, or combinations of conditions, will prevent some from be- ing approved for coverage. 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