Erasure Poetry At Home – The New York Times

The past year has been difficult for many people. The pandemic, the politics, the job loss and the isolation — most Americans have had to find some new coping mechanisms to make it through. Here’s one: erasure poetry.

Creativity can be healing in difficult times, but it’s not always easy to tap into those creative juices. Sometimes you’re just too overwhelmed and exhausted to write or create. In those times, turning to found poetry — a style of poetry in which you write something new using only what you can find in an existing text — can help.

Sometimes when it’s hard to write, that constraint gives you a place to start. It’s a bit like a painter working with a limited palette: You have both a solid foundation from which to begin your poem, and the challenge to create something using only what you have in front of you. And even if you’re having difficulty writing traditionally constructed poetry, the medium of found poetry can let you gain access to a vocabulary you didn’t know you needed.

Among the forms of found poetry is erasure. The writer finds something new to say in an existing text; in this case,

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Evidence Builds That Pregnant Women Pass Covid Antibodies to Newborns

One of the many big questions scientists are trying to untangle is whether people who get Covid-19 during pregnancy will pass on some natural immunity to their newborns.

Recent studies have hinted that they might. And new findings, published Friday in the journal JAMA Pediatrics, provide another piece of the puzzle, offering more evidence that Covid-19 antibodies can cross the placenta.

“What we have found is fairly consistent with what we have learned from studies of other viruses,” said Scott E. Hensley, an associate professor of microbiology at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania and one of the senior authors of the study.

Additionally, he added, the study suggests that women are not only transferring antibodies to their fetuses, but also transferring more antibodies to their babies if they are infected earlier in their pregnancies. This might have implications for when women should be vaccinated against Covid-19, Dr. Hensley said, adding that vaccinating women earlier in pregnancy might offer more protective benefits, “but studies actually analyzing vaccination among pregnant women need to be completed.”

In the study, researchers from Pennsylvania tested more than 1,500 women who gave birth at Pennsylvania Hospital in Philadelphia between April

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MACPAC wants Congress to automatically boost FMAP during recessions

The Medicaid and CHIP Payment and Access Commission on Friday voted to recommend that Congress automatically increase the federal share of Medicaid spending during recessions.

Under the policy, the federal government would temporarily raise the Federal Medical Assistance Percentage based on increases in state unemployment and reductions in total wages and salaries, rather than requiring Congress to approve each increase as it does now.

Experts have said the policy would bolster state Medicaid programs, which struggle to deal with enrollment and spending increases during economic downturns—changes caused by people working fewer hours and losing their jobs and employer-sponsored insurance. States often turn to provider rate cuts to rein in their Medicaid spending during recessions, which could force safety-net providers to close and reduce beneficiaries’ access to care.

MACPAC’s recommendation builds on an approach developed by the Government Accountability Office. The commission’s analysis found GAO’s model would have—in many instances—triggered financial help for states months before Congress acted and seemed “sufficiently sensitive to respond to major recessions but not minor economic fluctuations.”

Congress approved a 6.2{9408d2729c5b964773080eecb6473be8afcc4ab36ea87c4d1a5a2adbd81b758b} FMAP increase tied to the public health emergency in March’s COVID-19 relief package. And the House subsequently passed a 14{9408d2729c5b964773080eecb6473be8afcc4ab36ea87c4d1a5a2adbd81b758b} increase that would have

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A Pandemic Is Hard Enough. For Some, Being Single Has Made It Harder.

The coronavirus pandemic has been rough on virtually everyone.

But those who have been single through the isolation, fear and upheaval say they’ve been confronted with a distinct set of challenges — not necessarily more or less severe than those who are coupled up, but different. Some who said they were content with being single before the pandemic have nonetheless struggled with what they’re missing in emotional support and even routine physical touch.

“The first few months I thought: ‘This is OK, I can work on myself,’” said Gagan Bhatnagar, 35, a clinical oncology consultant in London. “But then it just dragged on. One day I realized it had been three months since I had touched a human being.”

With a widely shared Twitter thread in December, Mr. Bhatnagar tapped into a wide range of single angst. The thousands of responses he received indicated single people often felt their needs were being overlooked or dismissed, and they frequently felt guilty about expressing them. What’s a bit of mopey loneliness when others are dying?

While everyone has their own level of comfort with being single — there are plenty of people perfectly fine spending time alone — those who responded to

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HHS allows more healthcare providers to administer COVID-19 vaccines

HHS on Thursday made moves to rapidly grow the vaccination workforce and increase the public’s access to COVID-19 vaccinations.

Under the amendment to the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act (PREP Act), all licensed and certified healthcare professionals are now authorized to prescribe, dispense and administer COVID-19 vaccines in any state or U.S. territory after completing the CDC’s COVID-19 vaccine training, regardless of where they are licensed or certified.

“As vaccine supply is made more widely available over the coming months, having additional vaccinators at the ready will help providers and state health departments meet the demand for vaccine and protect their communities more quickly,” HHS Acting Secretary Norris Cochran said in a statement.

The Biden administration has said it wants to have at least 1 million vaccinations per day but has said it still could take months to give a shot to everyone who wants one.

The amendment also allows any physician, registered nurse or practical nurse whose license or certification expired in the past five years to prescribe, dispense or administer the COVID-19 vaccine in any U.S. state or territory, granted that their license or certification was in good standing before it become inactive. These healthcare workers are

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As More Deaf People Are Seen on TV, Others Want to Be Heard

While filming the reality series “Deaf U,” Rodney Burford wasn’t too focused on any effect he and his cochlear implants would have on viewers. “In my own mind I was like, ‘Yo, I’m really on Netflix,’” said the 22-year-old cast member of the show, which zooms in on a group of students at Gallaudet University, the nation’s only liberal arts university devoted to deaf people.

Things changed after the show debuted last fall. Parents of cochlear-implant users started reaching out to say how seeing Burford on the screen had made an impact on their children. “So I would say, no question, I’m proud,” he said in an interview. “I am very proud.”

Many deaf and hard-of-hearing individuals have welcomed the increase in visibility that deafness and hearing loss have enjoyed on TV lately. The current season of “The Bachelor,” on ABC, features Abigail Heringer, who is believed to be the first deaf contestant and cochlear-implant wearer on the show; the actress Angel Theory, who is hard of hearing, currently stars on “Kinderfänger” on Facebook Watch and plays Kelly, a character with hearing loss, on AMC’s “The Walking Dead”; and Disney+ has announced that a Hawkeye series in development would

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Biden to reopen ‘Obamacare’ markets for COVID-19 relief

Fulfilling a campaign promise, President Joe Biden plans to reopen the insurance markets for a special sign-up opportunity geared to people needing coverage in the coronavirus pandemic.

Biden is expected to sign an executive order Thursday, said two people familiar with the plan, whose details were still being finalized. They spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss the pending order ahead of a formal announcement.

Although the number of uninsured Americans has grown because of job losses due to the economic hit of COVID-19, the Trump administration resisted calls to authorize a “special enrollment period” for people uninsured in the pandemic. Failure to repeal and replace “Obamacare” as he repeatedly vowed to do was one of former President Donald Trump’s most bitter disappointments. His administration continued trying to find ways to limit the program or unravel it entirely. A Supreme Court decision on Trump’s final legal challenge to the Affordable Care Act is expected this year.

The White House had no comment on Biden’s expected order, but the two people familiar with the plan said the new enrollment period would not go into effect immediately. Instead, the White House wants to provide time

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The Best Time of Day to Exercise

Is it better for our bodies to work out at certain times of day?

A useful new study of exercise timing and metabolic health suggests that, at least for some people, the answer is a qualified yes. The study, which looked at men at high risk for Type 2 diabetes, found that those who completed afternoon workouts upped their metabolic health far more than those who performed the same exercise earlier in the day. The results add to growing evidence that when we exercise may alter how we benefit from that exercise.

Scientists have known for some time that the chronology of our days influences the quality of our health. Studies in both animals and people indicate that every tissue in our bodies contains a kind of molecular clock that chimes, in part, in response to biological messages related to our daily exposure to light, food and sleep.

These cellular clocks then help to calibrate when our cells divide, fuel up, express genes and otherwise go about their normal biological work. Tuned by our lifestyles, these clocks create multiple circadian rhythms inside of us that prompt our bodies’ temperatures, hormone levels, blood sugar, blood pressure, muscular strength and other biological

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Encompass Health reports minor gains in fourth quarter, predicts 8{9408d2729c5b964773080eecb6473be8afcc4ab36ea87c4d1a5a2adbd81b758b} growth in 2021

Inpatient rehabilitation hospital and home health operator Encompass Health had a minor increase in its 2020 fourth quarter net operating revenue but predicts it will have a stronger 2021, the company said Tuesday.

The Birmingham, Ala.-based company reported net operating revenue of $1.2 billion during the fourth quarter of 2020, up 3{9408d2729c5b964773080eecb6473be8afcc4ab36ea87c4d1a5a2adbd81b758b} from the previous year. During the third quarter, Encompass experienced a 1{9408d2729c5b964773080eecb6473be8afcc4ab36ea87c4d1a5a2adbd81b758b} increase in net operating revenue.

“We are pleased with our performance in 2020, which demonstrates the resiliency of our business model,” said Encompass Health President and CEO Mark Tarr said in a prepared statement. “As we look ahead into 2021, we remain confident in our business and long-term prospects.”

The provider projected its operating revenue will rise 8{9408d2729c5b964773080eecb6473be8afcc4ab36ea87c4d1a5a2adbd81b758b} in 2021.

Encompass Health said growth was tied to favorable pricing in the inpatient rehabilitation segment but noted that those gains were partially offset by lower volumes in both inpatient rehabilitation and home health and hospice operations, as well as lower pricing in the home health and hospice segment.

Encompass Health in December said it was looking at options for its home health and hospice segment. At the time, the company said “a range of

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