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Nation

Study finds codeine given to kids in ER

– Despite recommended limits on codeine use in children, the potent painkiller is prescribed for children in at least half a million emergency room visits each year, a study suggests.

Use of the drug in that setting is hardly rampant – just 3 percent of kids’ ER visits resulted in a codeine prescription in 2010, the 10-year study found. But with more than 25 million ER visits by children each year, the authors say far too many kids are getting the drug when better options are available.

Codeine is an opiate drug, and a genetic variation makes some people metabolize it too quickly, potentially resulting in dangerous side effects including excessive sleepiness and difficulty breathing.

The study was published online today in Pediatrics.

Change password for health care site

People who have accounts on the enrollment website for President Barack Obama’s signature health care law are being told to change their passwords after an administration review of the government’s vulnerability to the confounding Heartbleed Internet security flaw.

Senior administration officials said there is no indication that the HealthCare.gov site has been compromised and the action is being taken out of an abundance of caution. The government’s Heartbleed review is ongoing, the officials said, and users of other websites may also be told to change their passwords.

The Heartbleed programming flaw has caused major security concerns across the Internet. Major Internet services have been recommending that users change their website passwords.

Oscar Mayer wieners recalled

Kraft Foods is recalling 96,000 pounds of its Oscar Mayer wieners because they may mistakenly contain cheese.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Food Safety and Inspection Service said Sunday that Kraft’s “Oscar Mayer Classic Wieners” may instead contain the company’s “Classic Cheese Dogs.” Those products were made with milk, a known allergen, which is not declared on the label.

The products were made in early March and bear the number “Est. 537H” inside the USDA inspection mark.

Country artist Sharp dies at 43

Kevin Sharp, a country music singer who recorded multiple chart-topping songs and survived a battle with cancer, has died. He was 43.

His sister Mary Huston said Sharp died at his mother’s Fair Oaks, Calif., home, Saturday night of complications from past stomach surgeries and digestive issues.

Sharp gained fame with the release of “Nobody Knows,” a single on his 1996 debut album, “Measure of a Man.” He released two other albums, “Love Is” in 1998 and “Make A Wish” in 2005.

Sharp was diagnosed with Ewing’s sarcoma, a rare form of bone cancer, as a high school senior. He overcame it after two years of chemotherapy and radiation.

Sharp became a motivational speaker and a spokesman for the Make-A-Wish Foundation.

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