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Year in Review 2008: Best in Health by WorldChanging

WorldChangingWorldChanging brings stories of the most important and innovative new tools, models and ideas for building a bright green future. Their articles are just amazing, and for the end of 2008 they decided to rediscovered some of the great events, innovations, interviews and debates that they covered in the previous year. They wrote a series of articles titled Year in Review, which was divided into several categories like best in climate change, energy, and of course best in health, food and society.

Here are the summaries of their best health stories from 2008.

Facebook, Coca-Cola and Medical Aid in Africa

Simon Berry has an idea. Why not persuade Coca-Cola to dedicate a fraction of its distribution network to carry medicines for simple, widespread and life-threatening ailments like diarrhea. Why Coca Cola? Because even the most remote African communities have limitless access to bottles of Coca-Cola.

Making Social Equity an Issue of Public Health

This article discusses the issue of health equity. How is it possible that there is a 28 year difference in life expectancy between the most and least fortunate residents of Glasgow, Scotland?

The Transformative 120: Text Messages Prove a South African HIV Lifeline

Six million South Africans are infected with the HIV, but just one in ten are currently in treatment. Project Masiluleke sends mobile customers texts pointing them to the National AIDS Helpline (0800-012-322) and HIV911 (0860-448-911).

Worldchanging Interview: Dr. Sanjay Gupta on Health Solutions

Interview with Dr. Sanjay Gupta, chief medical correspondent at CNN. He is a practicing neurosurgeon and award-winning journalist who is dedicated to helping improve public health and spreading awareness of health-related environmental issues.

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Save water and your life when you shower

Just 2.5% of the planet’s water is fresh and less than 1% is available for human consumption because the rest is stored in the form of ice bergs. Think about this the next time you’re taking a shower. The average shower uses 64 liters of water, but this number can be even higher. Modern power shower can easily use 20 liters of water a minute, meaning more than five minutes in the shower could use more than 100 liters. Astonishing figures!

CueThere are some cheap and smart devices on the market which can help you save water, money and maybe even your life. CUE the breast self-exam reminder is an electronic breast self-exam reminder, a shower timer, a clock, a doctor’s visit reminder. It helps you reduce the time you spent in the shower and the amount of water you use, but it also reminds you to perform your breast self-exam seven days after your period begins, when your breasts are least tender. With it you also receive the instructional DVD, “Performing Your Breast Self-Exam”.

powerdropSimply timing your shower is a positive step forward, but it doesn’t tell you how much water you saved. Another device called Eco Showerdrop can do just that. Before you start using it, you calibrate it to measure your own particular shower. This way you can set your goal to save liters and liters of precious water. On the other hand, Eco Showerdrop doesn’t offer reminders.

Shower or not, woman should regularly perform breast self exams. Five Steps of a Breast Self-Exam from Breastcancer.org is a good place to start.

Via Gizmodo and SmartPlanet.

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Green Hospital Room

Lloyd Alter of TreeHugger interviewed Suzanne Drake of the architectural firm Anshen+Allen during the IIDEX in Toronto. IIDEX NeoCon is Canada’s largest exposition and conference for the design, construction and management of the built environment. Anshen+Allen presented their idea of the green patient room at the conference.

Watch the whole interview here…

To learn more you can download the Greening the Patient Experience Room brochure (pdf).

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