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Catherine Fitzgerald, the author's mother, spent four nights in a hospital after falling in her home. But Medicare refused to pay for her rehab care, saying she had only been an inpatient for one night. Alison Kodjak/NPR hide caption

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Alison Kodjak/NPR

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says a recent E. coli outbreak is linked to romaine lettuce grown in Yuma, Ariz. At least 53 people have reported illnesses, 31 have been hospitalized. David Goldman/AP hide caption

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David Goldman/AP

Ogechi Ukachu, one of the registered nurses recently hired to help staff D.C.'s "Right Care Right Now" program, takes a training call at the city's 911 call center. Selena Simmons-Duffin/NPR hide caption

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Selena Simmons-Duffin/NPR

Can Triage Nurses Help Prevent 911 Overload?

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Researchers used a gene-carrying virus to fix blood stem cells that were then used to treat patients with beta-thalassemia. Power and Syred/Science Photo Library/Getty Images hide caption

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Power and Syred/Science Photo Library/Getty Images

How do we make sense of all that chatter? Ilana Kohn/Getty Images hide caption

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Ilana Kohn/Getty Images

How People Learned To Recognize Monkey Calls Reveals How We All Make Sense Of Sound

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Mice may be adorable, but the droppings and the bacteria they contain, not so much. Mchugh Tom/Science Source/Getty Images hide caption

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Mchugh Tom/Science Source/Getty Images

New York City Mice Carry Bacteria That Can Make People Sick

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Free-standing ERs tend to have lower standby costs than hospital-based facilities that have to be ready to treat dire injuries. But the free-standing ERs typically receive the same Medicare rate for emergency services. sshepard/Getty Images hide caption

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Carolina Reapers are some of the hottest peppers in the world. So hot, in fact, that for one man, participating in a pepper-eating contestant resulted in a painful, serious "thunderclap headache." Maria Dattola Photography/Getty Images hide caption

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Maria Dattola Photography/Getty Images

The Super-Hot Pepper That Sent A Man To The ER

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University of Puget Sound chemist Dan Burgard keeps a freezer full of archived samples from two wastewater treatment plants in western Washington in case he needs to rerun the samples or analyze a specific drug he didn't test for the first time. Dan Burgard hide caption

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Dan Burgard

Under current law, Medicare requires patients to get a referral before seeing an audiologist to diagnose hearing loss. Leyla B / EyeEm/Getty Images hide caption

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Leyla B / EyeEm/Getty Images

Sen. Tammy Duckworth walks across stage at the Democratic National Convention in 2016. She is the first senator to give birth while serving in office. Alex Wong/Getty Images hide caption

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Alex Wong/Getty Images

Plaques located in the gray matter of the brain are key indicators of Alzheimer's disease. Cecil Fox/Science Source hide caption

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Cecil Fox/Science Source

Scientists Push Plan To Change How Researchers Define Alzheimer's

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Maria Fabrizio for NPR

Bill Of The Month: A Tale Of 2 CT Scanners — One Richer, One Poorer

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Melodie Beckham (left), here with her daughter, Laura, had metastatic lung cancer and chose to stop taking medical marijuana after it failed to relieve her symptoms. She died a few weeks after this photo was taken. Melissa Bailey/Kaiser Health News hide caption

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Melissa Bailey/Kaiser Health News

Physical therapist Ingrid Peele coaches Kim Brown through strengthening exercises to help her with her chronic pain, at the OSF Central Illinois Pain Center in Peoria. Kyle Travers/WFYI hide caption

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Kyle Travers/WFYI