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Monday, Sep 26th

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Florida GOP ready to retreat from Planned Parenthood fight

Planned ParenthoodSeveral House Republicans in Florida say they’re willing to concede defeat in their party’s months-long battle over Planned Parenthood if that’s what it takes to pass a $1.1 billion funding package for the Zika virus.

With Zika spreading rapidly in south Florida, even some of the most conservative members of Congress say GOP leaders should strike a deal with Democrats to get emergency money to their home state.

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FDA bans antiseptic chemicals from soaps

FDA bans antiseptic soapsThe federal government Friday banned more than a dozen chemicals long-used in antibacterial soaps, saying manufacturers failed to show they are safe and kill germs.

“We have no scientific evidence that they are any better than plain soap and water,” said Dr. Janet Woodcock, the Food and Drug Administration’ drug center director, in a statement.

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Florida finds first local mosquitoes with Zika virus

Zika mosquitoFlorida officials on Thursday said they have trapped the first mosquitoes that tested positive for the Zika virus in the Miami area, further confirming reports of local U.S. transmission of the illness that can cause severe birth defects.

Three mosquito samples tested positive from a small area in Miami Beach where increased trapping and intensified mosquito control measures are being implemented, the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services said.

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W. Virginia recovering addicts wage legal battle over prescription use

W Va. addicts wage legal battleWilbert Hatcher admits he broke the law.

In the depths of a decade-long addiction to prescription opioid painkillers, the father of two fed his craving by buying blackmarket pills on the streets of his small West Virginia town. He finally shook the addiction three years ago. But now Hatcher, 50, an assistant manager at Walmart, is at the heart of a groundbreaking legal battle with the medical industry over whether he is a criminal or a victim.

“I’m a well-rounded, educated individual who thinks that I don’t have an addictive personality. But when you go to the doctor and they’re pushing the drugs, and they feed and feed the addiction,” he said. “What is it going to take before we as a nation accept that we are the victims for the most part and the doctor, the pharmacist and pharmacies are the perpetrators feeding off the lives of others?”

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225+ heroin overdoses in 4 counties in 4 states in 1 week

Heroin overdose epidemicAn overdose crisis in the past week has left police and emergency responders here drained and without clues.

It has also underscored that this region does not have resources to treat all of people addicted to opioids, including heroin.

Police are asking for the public's help in identifying the source of heroin sold here that caused scores of overdoses, including at least three deaths. More than 200 people in four states have been victims of what law enforcement officials are calling a supercharged form of the sedative, and one additional person died in Indiana.

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EpiPen maker offers patients $300 savings cards

EpiPen discount cardMylan N.V., makers of the anti-allergic reaction EpiPen, announced programs Thursday to lower the device's cost after U.S. senators expressed outrage at the price increase.

The single-use auto-injection pens, used as dispensers of the medicine epinephrine in emergencies resulting from food allergies, were created by Merck Group in the 1970s, and were acquired by Mylan in 2007. A price increase, from $57 per pen in 2007 to about $500 per pen today, drew the anger, earlier this week, of four U.S. senators who asked Mylan for an explanation.

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Monsanto pulls new GM cotton seed from India in protest

Monsanto pulls GM seed from IndiaMonsanto Co (MON.N) has withdrawn an application seeking approval for its next generation of genetically modified cotton seeds in India, a major escalation in a long-running dispute between New Delhi and the world's biggest seed maker.

A letter sent by Monsanto's local partner in India, the conglomerate's biggest market outside the Americas, strongly objects to a government proposal that would force Monsanto to share its technology with local seed companies.

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