It might not be intuitive, but Newsweek science columnist Sharon Begley explains why less health care can lead to better health, and why more of it can be harmful. Her article “One word can save your life: No!” helps explain some of the thinking behind controversial recommendations about breast and prostate cancer screenings, and why an increasing number of medical professionals say that tests and treatments that can help some patients can be useless or even harmful when offered to the general public.

(Dr. Stephen Smith, the Brown University medical school professor emeritus mentioned in the lede as a physician who avoids getting certain screenings for himself because they haven’t been shown to save lives, happens to also be a New London native who is active in the push for univeral health care in Connecticut.)

Arielle Levin Becker covered health care for The Connecticut Mirror. She previously worked for The Hartford Courant, most recently as its health reporter, and has also covered small towns, courts and education in Connecticut and New Jersey. She was a finalist in 2009 for the prestigious Livingston Award for Young Journalists, a recipient of a Knight Science Journalism Fellowship and the third-place winner in 2013 for an in-depth piece on caregivers from the National Association of Health Journalists. She is a 2004 graduate of Yale University.

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