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PNS Daily Newscast - October 21, 2020 


A new report sizes up swing states like Michigan; voters with disabilities face new obstacles in Election 2020.


2020Talks - October 21, 2020 


Democrats weigh boycotting the committee vote on Trump's Supreme Court nominee; and concerns over mail slowdowns in 10 battleground states.

Public News Service - MA: Senior

More than 70% of Massachusetts voters support medical aid in dying, according to the most recent poll on the issue in 2013 by Purple Insights. (Gundula Vogel/Pixabay)

BOSTON -- The Massachusetts Legislature may soon vote on the End-of-Life Options Act. The Joint Committee on Public Health recently approved the bill, the first time it was voted favorably out of committee since it first was introduced in 2011. The act is limited to mentally capable, terminally il

The patients in the highest quartile for symptoms of early-onset dementia were three times more likely to receive a dementia diagnosis in the future in comparison to patients in their overall sample. A team at Mass General and Harvard analyzed the records of 500,000 patients. (Gerd Altmann/Pixabay)

BOSTON -- Massachusetts researchers can detect early dementia symptoms just by combing through existing data from healthy people. A team from Mass General and Harvard created software that automatically scans through electronic health records to predict the likelihood a person may develop dementia.

Springfield Mayor Domenic J. Sarno acknowledges that the rising cost of living is tough for older residents, and says he'll support a property-tax break for those who volunteer for the city.<br />(mass_osd/Flickr)

SPRINGFIELD, Mass. – The city council of Springfield, Massachusetts, passed a bill this week that offers a unique tax break – if senior citizens volunteer for the city, they can get up to $1,000 off their property taxes. It's a popular program that has now been adopted by close to 20 c

Almost two-thirds of Massachusetts college students graduate with student loan debt. (Pixabay)

BOSTON – A bill to protect student-loan borrowers from deceptive loan-servicing companies has cleared the state Senate. Almost two-thirds of undergraduate students in the Bay State finish college with an average of nearly $30,000 of student loan debt. That's a 75 percent increase since 2004.

Proposed SNAP food assistance cuts are likely to hit low-income seniors and people with disabilities hardest. (USDA)

BOSTON – President Donald Trump wants to take a $193 billion slice out of the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program over the next 10 years, and local advocates say seniors and Bay Staters with disabilities would be hardest hit by the proposal. Patricia Baker, a policy analyst at

A Boston nonprofit is ditching the fancy banquet tables in favor of soapboxes Tuesday night in an event that will focus on patient-centered care. (National Institutes of Health)

BOSTON - Forget the banquet table with expensive flowers and a fancy meal. A major Boston nonprofit is replacing that with soapboxes for speakers to stand on for what they expect will be a wide-ranging conversation about patient-centered care. Amy Whitcomb Slemmer, executive director for Health C

At 101, Kay Roberts still dresses up to read to students from the Cat in the Hat. After a half-century as an educator, she knows what makes a good teacher, and a good student. Courtesy: Massachusetts Teachers Assn.

BOSTON - If you want to know what makes a good teacher and a good student, you might want to ask someone with classroom experience. Now that she is 101 years of age, Kay Roberts has plenty of that. She started teaching in a one-room schoolhouse in Vermont in 1937, but it wasn't long before Kay Rob

Health Care For All's 1996 victory march after state lawmakers passed legislation creating MassHealth and expanded coverage for kids. The group's 30th anniversary will be celebrated tonight in Boston. Courtesy: Health Care for All.

BOSTON - While Tax Day has many Americans thinking about the new check-off box on income-tax forms that tracks whether they have health insurance, the focus in Massachusetts has shifted to the quality and affordability of that coverage. State efforts that date back to 2006 have ensured that very fe

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