Today’s Headlines: Boston’s Amazing Medical Response, A Higher Smoking Age and More

Boston Emergency Medical Community Praised for Marathon Bombings Response: “Only two patients wounded in the Boston Marathon bombings remained in critical condition Monday, but the count of injured people who were treated in area hospitals has risen sharply to 282, according to the Boston Public Health Commission.” Health commission spokesman Nick Martin said that this number increased “because dozens of victims delayed seeking medical care for minor wounds or symptoms that they thought would go away on their own.” Meanwhile, Dr. Alex Rosenau, President-elect of the American College of Emergency Physicians, acknowledged that “considering the number of injured and the severe nature of many of the injuries, it really speaks well of the Boston emergency medical community that there were so few fatalities.” (Boston Globe)

Lower Resting Heart Rate May Be Better for Longevity:  A new study, published in Heart, suggests that “a higher resting heart rate is an independent predictor of mortality – even in healthy people in good physical condition.” In the study, which included more than 5,200 individuals, “after controlling for physical fitness and many other health and behavioral factors,” researchers “found that the higher the resting heart rate, the greater the risk for death.” The study indicated that, “compared with men with rates of 50 beats a minute or less, those at 71 to 80 beats had a 51% greater risk.” (New York Times)

New York City Proposes Raising Minimum Age to Purchase Cigarettes to 21:  New York City Health Commissioner Dr. Thomas A. Farley and Christine C. Quinn, City Council Speaker and mayoral candidate, announced a proposal to increase the age to legally purchase cigarettes in the city to 21, “a measure that would give New York the strictest limits of any major American city.” This is the “latest effort in a persistent campaign to curb smoking that began soon after Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg took office,” referring to his bans on smoking in restaurants and bars, which was later expanded to include other public spaces. (New York Times)