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Dr. Bill Mahon says a gorgeous coast and the chance to practice a more personal style of community medicine lured him to remote Fort Bragg, Calif., 35 years ago. Farida Jhabvala Romero/KQED hide caption

itoggle caption Farida Jhabvala Romero/KQED

Fentanyl, a synthetic opioid, has been used for decades as a painkiller in the operating room. Joe Amon/The Denver Post/Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption Joe Amon/The Denver Post/Getty Images

Heroin sold in the U.S., like this dose confiscated in Alabama last fall, is often cut with other drugs. Tamika Moore/AL.com/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Tamika Moore/AL.com/Landov

University Medical Center New Orleans on Aug. 1, when the $1 billion facility welcomed its first patients. Brett Duke/The Times-Picayune/Landov hide caption

itoggle caption Brett Duke/The Times-Picayune/Landov

Michael Arnott, of Cambridge, Mass., says he used to have trouble staying awake on long drives. Sleep specialists discovered he has obstructive sleep apnea, though not for the most common reasons — he isn't overweight, and doesn't smoke or take sedatives. M. Scott Brauer for NPR hide caption

itoggle caption M. Scott Brauer for NPR

Frozen sperm straws and embryos are stored in liquid nitrogen, in a process known as cryopreservation. One question confronting the courts: Should embryos such as these be treated as property, or as children subject to custody action? Veronique Burger/Science Source hide caption

itoggle caption Veronique Burger/Science Source
Katherine Streeter for NPR

Bacillus subtilis may look like pasta under the microscope, but the bacteria are common in the gut of humans. Could the microbes be contributing to our belly fat? Too soon to tell, scientists say. BSIP/UIG via Getty Images hide caption

itoggle caption BSIP/UIG via Getty Images

A daily pill called Addyi is the first medicine to be approved for the purpose of boosting women's sexual desire. Allen G. Breed/AP hide caption

itoggle caption Allen G. Breed/AP

Jo Ann Farwell, a retired social worker, has a brain tumor; she wanted to make sure her sons were clear about her end-of-life wishes. So, after talking with her doctor, she filled out a form that Oregon provides to ease those family conversations. Alan Sylvestre/Kristian Foden-Vencil/Oregon Public Broadcasting hide caption

itoggle caption Alan Sylvestre/Kristian Foden-Vencil/Oregon Public Broadcasting

Policy-ish

Medicare Says Doctors Should Get Paid To Discuss End-Of-Life Issues

After a six-year delay, Medicare proposes to reimburse doctors who hold end-of-life discussions with Medicare patients. The federal program is now soliciting public comments on the idea.

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