Vatican hosting health care conference
    The Vatican will play host to a major international conference on health care this weekend.
    Catholic World News reports that the meeting, sponsored by the Pontifical Council for Health Care, begins today. It is an annual conference, which this year will bring together 500 people from 66 different countries. The participants include both doctors and health-care administrators.
    The focus of the conference will be on "new" diseases such as AIDS, Alzheimer's disease, and infectious maladies related to drug abuse. But the participants will also discuss efforts to eradicate "classic" diseases such as polio, malaria, and hepatitis, insofar as those infectious diseases have become alarmingly prevalent in recent years, particularly in Third World countries.
    The conference will also consider the cultural factors that influence health care, including the attitudes of different religious traditions toward medicine.