Daily Rounds: Dems Trumpet Health Message; Veggie Big Mac; Antibiotic-Filled Chicken; Docs Overestimate Quality

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Michelle Obama Tops Opening Night For Democrats (The New York Times) — After what has at times been a tentative approach to promoting the health care law, perhaps Mr. Obama’s signature legislation, the program included a full-throated defense of the overhaul and the Supreme Court’s decision to uphold it. And an Arizona woman, Stacey Lihn, took the stage with her toddler, Zoe, who has a congenital heart disease, and said her daughter’s health insurance would run out if Mr. Romney won and followed through with his promise to get Mr. Obama’s health care law repealed. “But we’re also scared,” she said. “Governor Romney repealing health care reform is something we worry about literally every day.” The Democrats even got the spirit of Senator Edward M. Kennedy of Massachusetts into the act in a tribute video. It showed Mr. Kennedy in his 1994 debate with Mr. Romney during their Senate race, mocking Mr. Romney for his shifting position on abortion rights and calling him “multiple choice.”

McDonald's Goes Vegetarian In India (NPR) — "McDonald's, home of the iconic Big Mac, is going vegetarian. Well, at least in India, where 20 to 42 percent or more of the population (depending on how you count) eschews meat, according to the Food and Agriculture Organization. According to AFP, McDonald's will open its first vegetarian-only location next year near the Golden Temple, a pilgrimage site sacred to Sikhs located in the city of Amritsar in northern India. There is no meat allowed in the temple (or smoking or alcohol, for that matter.) The reasons for going meatless in India are obvious: Cows are sacred to Hindus, and the country's Muslims don't eat pork. That leaves a lot of chicken and vegetables to be served in McDonald's existing Indian restaurants....McDonald's in India already has a menu that is 50 percent vegetarian, according to Yahoo News. At 28 rupees, or 50 cents, each, its McAloo Tikki burger— which uses a spicy, fried potato-based patty — is the top seller, accounting for a quarter of total sales. And you won't find a Big Mac in India, just a Maharaja Mac, which involves chicken patties, notes Business Insider."

Farm Use Of Antibiotics Draws Scrutiny (The New York Times) — "The numbers released quietly by the federal government this year were alarming. A ferocious germ resistant to many types of antibiotics had increased tenfold on chicken breasts, the most commonly eaten meat on the nation’s dinner tables.But instead of a learning from a broad national inquiry into a troubling trend, scientists said they were stymied by a lack of the most basic element of research: solid data. Eighty percent of the antibiotics sold in the United States goes to chicken, pigs, cows and other animals that people eat, yet producers of meat and poultry are not required to report how they use the drugs — which ones, on what types of animal, and in what quantities. This dearth of information makes it difficult to document the precise relationship between routine antibiotic use in animals and antibiotic-resistant infections in people, scientists say."

Docs, Nurses May Overestimate Quality Of Their Care (Reuters) — "Doctors and nurses may overestimate the quality of the care they provide hospital patients in the hours leading up to a serious complication, according to a small new study. After reviewing the records of 47 patients, Dutch researchers found that for more than half there were delays in recognizing that the patients' conditions were deteriorating in advance of a crisis, such as an unplanned admission to intensive care. Meanwhile nurses, doctors-in-training and specialists reported far fewer delays."

This program aired on September 5, 2012. The audio for this program is not available.