Texas

New telehealthcare service in the US

Next year, OptumHealth, will give patients in the U.S. the ability to connect with primary care physicians online through NowClinic, an online platform that uses video chat. For 45 dollars, patients with or without insurance can have a consultation with a primary physician, avoiding the stress and hassle of making appointments. OptumHealth will first offer their service in Texas and will expand the service on a state by state basis; according to OptumHealth “180 counties do not have enough physicians, 70 percent of patients cannot obtain a same-day visit with their primary care doctor, and 79 percent of emergency room visits are for routine problem” so the service may help to extend services to patients seeking care in underserviced areas. That said, the service itself is receiving extensive criticism from professional within the medical field. Professionals feel that by removing the physical component of a medical exam, doctors may miss some health-indicators and nonverbal clues. Read the full New York Times article on the service here.

The 'Grythyttan' of Texas? Maybe...

A while back Living Labs Global reported on the Swedish mining town of Grythyttan: a town which on its last legs reinvented itself as a global center for gastronomy, exploring all aspects of restauranteering and using new technologies to boot. Here is the original post. Marfa, Texas, of all places, seems to be experiencing its own culinary renaissance. Many leagues from Texas's traditional epicentres this small town, a mere dot on the state's westward territories (it's closest to the city of San Antonio), is becoming known for its unpretentious, global home cooking.

Serving up everything from diesel fried chicken to marfalafel, a local spin on falafel, in old delivery trucks or washed up car dealerships.

Ok, so Marfa isn't home to the world's largest cookbook library and nor can eager students complete a PHD in Taste (both are possible in Grythyttan.) Still, it's an exciting story of culinary reinvention. To read more about the town's revitalization---click here.