Category Archives: healthcare

San Diego is struggling with a huge hepatitis A outbreak. Is it coming to L.A.? – LA Times

San Diego County is experiencing the third worst hepatitis A outbreak in the nation since a vaccine was introduced. L.A. officials fear the outbreak is headed north.

Source: San Diego is struggling with a huge hepatitis A outbreak. Is it coming to L.A.? – LA Times

 officials in San Diego have scrambled for months to contain an outbreak of hepatitis A — vaccinating more than 19,000 people, putting up posters at bus stations and distributing hand sanitizer and cleansing wipes.

Despite those efforts, 16 people have died of the highly contagious virus in San Diego County and hundreds have become ill in what officials say is the nation’s second-largest outbreak of hepatitis A in decades.

Earlier this month, San Diego officials declared a public health emergency.

Though Los Angeles has so far escaped an outbreak, public health officials are hoping to head off a similar emergency. They say the virus could easily spread to Los Angeles because of its proximity to San Diego and the region’s large homeless population.

“We know it’s getting worse in San Diego so we’re really ramping up,” said Cristin Mondy, the county’s area health officer for a region that includes downtown Los Angeles.

In their efforts to get their outbreak under control, San Diego health officials have adopted a technique from L.A. that they hope will stop cases from spreading locally: washing the streets with water containing bleach.

“They didn’t have any outbreaks. We did. So we were like, ‘What’s going on there?’ ” said San Diego County public health officer Dr. Wilma Wooten. “That’s what we wanted to replicate here.”

CDC issues alert over raw milk and Brucella infection | CIDRAP

“CDC advises that people who consumed raw milk or milk products from the K-Bar Dairy between June 1 and Aug. 7, 2017, should get antibiotic treatment to avoid the risk of lifelong, chronic infections,” the agency said in a news release today.People with brucellosis typically experience fever, sweats, aches, and fatigue initially. If not treated, however, the condition can lead to arthritis, heart problems, enlargement of the spleen or liver, and, in rare cases, nervous system problems.

Source: CDC issues alert over raw milk and Brucella infection | CIDRAP

Hookworm, a disease of extreme poverty, is thriving in the US south. Why? | US news | The Guardian

“We now need to find how widespread hookworm is across the US,” said Dr Peter Hotez, dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine, who along with Rojelio Mejia led the research team. Hotez, who has estimated that as many as 12 million Americans could be suffering from neglected tropical diseases in poor parts of the south and midwest, told the Guardian the results were a wake-up call for the nation.“This is the inconvenient truth that nobody in America wants to talk about,” he said. “These people live in the southern United States, and nobody seems to care; they are poor, and nobody seems to care; and more often than not they are people of color, and nobody seems to care.”

Source: Hookworm, a disease of extreme poverty, is thriving in the US south. Why? | US news | The Guardian

Video: Israeli forces bring terror to Jerusalem hospital | The Electronic Intifada

B’Tselem’s report includes testimonies from medical staff describing dozens of heavily armed Israeli personnel raiding the hospital. They forced their way in, attacking security guards and civilians, who tried to defend the facility, with stun grenades and sponge-tipped bullets.The Israelis kicked people out of the blood bank where dozens of volunteers were trying to donate desperately needed blood. They raided the maternity ward, including a room where a mother was present, and sprayed pepper spray into another that was empty. Staff gathered most of the mothers in one room and took their babies to the nursery to protect them.Israeli forces blocked ambulanceAbu Ghanam had been involved in confrontations between Jerusalem youths and occupation forces in the al-Tur neighborhood when he was shot in the chest.Israeli forces stood around him for five to 10 minutes without providing any medical assistance, according to B’Tselem. Then when a Red Crescent ambulance arrived, Israeli forces tried to obstruct it. But the paramedics were able to reach Abu Ghanam and get him into the ambulance – which one of the Israeli soldiers tried to get into as well.“There was some mutual shoving between one of my colleagues and the two officers for about a minute, and then we got into the ambulance,” one of the medics told B’Tselem. “I locked the ambulance with the central locking system.”The medics then managed to drive to the hospital, despite Israeli forces trying to block their way.

Source: Video: Israeli forces bring terror to Jerusalem hospital | The Electronic Intifada

US Salmonella papaya outbreak more than doubles | CIDRAP

Last week, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) warned consumers to avoid all Caribena brand Maradol papayas. The FDA took this step after Texas-based Grande Produce, which distributes the brand, issued a limited recall on the fruit.According to the latest CDC update, the FDA has also identified Maradol papayas from the Carica de Campeche papaya farm in Mexico as a likely source of the outbreak. The agency is working to identify other brands of papayas that may have originated from Carica de Campeche and facilitate recalls.The FDA tested other papayas imported from Mexico and isolated, in addition to the two outbreak strains, Salmonella Agona, Salmonella Gaminara, and Salmonella Senftenberg.Maradol papayas are large, oval fruits that weigh 3 or more pounds and have green skin that turns yellow when ripe and salmon-colored flesh. The CDC recommends avoiding and discarding all Maradol papayas at this time.

Source: US Salmonella papaya outbreak more than doubles | CIDRAP

Alaska trip to attend hepatitis B meeting a first for NT Indigenous health workers – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

A group of Indigenous health workers from Galiwinku prepare to head to Alaska to share their stories and hepatitis B treatment methods.

Source: Alaska trip to attend hepatitis B meeting a first for NT Indigenous health workers – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

Anti-vaccine protester punches doctor after hotly-contested law gets approved – The Local – Anti-vaccine folks need for control and blame is delusional in the extreme, even if they “believe” they are getting revenge or protecting children.

Meanwhile, Italy’s top court last week ruled against a claim for damages from a father who argued his son’s autism was caused by the polio vaccine, Sabin.The decision by the Court of Cassation upheld earlier verdicts from lower courts in the Campania city of Salerno, ruling out a link between the vaccine and autism.

Source: Anti-vaccine protester punches doctor after hotly-contested law gets approved – The Local

Texas reports first local Zika case of 2017 | CIDRAP- Drip, drip, drip – pandemic start?

Texas health officials today announced the state’s first probable local Zika infection of the year, which also appears to be the first local case reported in the United States for 2017.The patient is a Hildago County resident who had not traveled outside the area or had any other risk factors, the Texas Department of State Health Services (TSDHS) said in a press release. Hildago County, located in the Rio Grande Valley, is in far southern Texas on the border with Mexico.The virus was probably transmitted by a mosquito bite in South Texas some time in the last few months, and lab tests show that the person is no longer at risk of spreading Zika to mosquitoes.In April the TDSHS expanded its recommendations for testing pregnant women and people with Zika infections in six South Texas counties, which led to thousands of tests being conducted and to the identification of the newly identified case.

Source: Texas reports first local Zika case of 2017 | CIDRAP