Ulcerative colitis patients often get a three-step surgery when a two-step procedure called an ileal pouch-anal anastomosis could be equally safe, study data show. The researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital said the key is having a surgeon who is experienced in treating inflammatory bowel disease.
Utah may face severe wildfires this summer because of severe drought and a shifting climate, said researchers at Utah State University. Forest-management practices have led to dry undergrowth, also increasing the risk, said Michael Jenkins of the university's Quinney College of Natural Resources. "Forests today are in a much different state than they were 200 years ago when fires were more common. We have suppressed fires for 100 years, which has allowed fuels to build up, trees to get old, forests to decline and die," he said.
After Sen. Mary Landrieu, D-La., filed a farm-bill amendment to defer rate increases under the National Flood Insurance Program, Rep. Bill Cassidy, R-La., said he intends to file an amendment to a bill on homeland-security appropriations to delay such increases. Sen. David Vitter, R-La., is expected to introduce legislation for "actuarial-based premiums" phased in over five years for homes that are sold, with such a measure also allowing local governments to provide premium subsidies for homeowners.
The tornado that hit El Reno, Okla., last week was rated an EF-5 and spanned 2.6 miles, making it the widest on record, according to the National Weather Service. Many lives and properties likely were spared because the tornado missed densely populated areas, said Rick Smith, a meteorologist with the agency. "Any house would have been completely swept clean on the foundation. That's just my speculation," Smith said.
The faster delivery of new insurance products and services is among the potential benefits offered by greater use of software-as-a-service and cloud computing, according to experts. "Being in a long software-development cycle does not meet our needs, especially in a changing environment of soft markets and hard markets," said Don Harrell of Liberty International Underwriters.