Top stories in health and medicine, December 12, 2012

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1. Patients’ Health IT Savvy Judged Lacking. As hospitals and physicians move to wider use of electronic health records (EHRs), patients need to become more engaged and be made aware that their records are accessible.

2. People Living Longer but Not Healthier Lives. Americans are living longer thanks to advances in medical care, but have a lower quality of life with the proliferation of chronic disease and preventable illness.

3. Smokers’ Risk of Sudden Death Drops After Quitting. Smokers are at risk for sudden cardiac death, but quitting can reduce that risk over time to levels seen among those who never smoked.

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