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  #11  
Old 12-09-2014, 07:15 AM
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http://www.corpcounsel.com/home/id=1...20141109071310

Quote:
Protecting Privacy During an Infectious Disease Panic

.....

Imagine the following scenario greeting you one morning: It isn’t stressful enough that you have just learned that a patient is being evaluated for a suspected case of a dreaded infectious disease in your hospital—now the patient’s name and photo are appearing all over the national news. A reporter is on the phone asking for comment from anyone whom he or she can get to talk, camera crews are filling your parking lot, and your chief privacy and security officers are on hold on two separate lines. In these situations, health privacy considerations and public/media demands are bound to collide.

Twentieth-century notions of health information privacy, as embodied in 1996’s Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), are struggling to keep up with the realities of today’s increasingly alarmist 24-hour cable news cycle. Add to that blogs and other frequently anonymous and unmoderated online news sources, plus pressure from a panicked public and besieged regulators, and, well, you get the drift.

The faces and names of the handful of people who have been exposed to Ebola in the U.S. to date suddenly became as familiar as those of tabloid celebrities, but it is not always clear how they were identified by the media. In some instances, such as the case of Thomas Eric Duncan, the first patient to die of the disease in the U.S., it appears that his family members disclosed his name and details of his care to news outlets. Other affected individuals, including Dr. Kent Brantly and Dallas nurse Nina Pham, have made statements or written first-person accounts for publication describing their experiences. In other circumstances, news outlets have boasted that their detective work led them to the patients’ identities. In this charged environment, it is critical for health-care providers to ensure that their own staff and contractors know what they can and cannot disclose, and to whom.


Read more: http://www.corpcounsel.com/id=120267...#ixzz3LOzy3lS9
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  #12  
Old 12-09-2014, 10:30 AM
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Visualization of vaccine-preventable diseases, 2008 to 2014:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mka18mbJyh4

Seems like a short time period to me. I played it at 2x speed, because it was so slow.

They really should do 50 years, and then you would really see some marked changes.
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  #13  
Old 12-15-2014, 09:47 PM
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MUMPS

and the NHL


http://regressing.deadspin.com/why-t...eak-1670727885

Quote:
This is the most baffling sports medicine story of the year: Thirteen NHL players and two referees have been diagnosed with mumps—a potentially severe and exceedingly viral infection that classically causes fever, body aches, malaise, and in about half of cases, parotitis (a painful swelling of the salivary glands). It's gotten so bad in the NHL that Sidney Crosby set off a mumps alert last week when he spoke to reporters with a welt on his face. (On Sunday, the Penguins confirmed Crosby does indeed have the disease.) So what's going on?

The story of this outbreak appears to have begun in early November, when Anaheim Ducks defenseman Francois Beauchemin noticed a swelling in his jaw after a game against the Arizona Coyotes on November 7th. A few hours later, he developed a fever, chills, muscle aches, and lost his appetite. Four days later, he was ten pounds lighter. By then, the virus was spreading around the Ducks locker room. Three of his teammates would catch the disease before it leapt to other teams: the New Jersey Devils, New York Rangers, and the Minnesota Wild, where five players came down with mumps, including all-star defenseman Ryan Suter.

"Ten percent of our team population contracted it," Minnesota Wild general manager Chuck Fletcher recently said. "As far as I know, everybody received the immunization when they were young." If that's true, what's the explanation? We know that the mumps vaccine unquestionably works—cases in the United States declined by 99 percent following its introduction in 1967—so why is an outbreak in hockey happening now?
.......
In 2006, thousands of college kids in the Midwest became infected with mumps, despite the fact that most had received the vaccine. This phenomenon is called vaccine failure, and scientists divide it into two categories: primary and secondary. Primary vaccine failure occurs when the body doesn't produce antibodies in response to the initial immunization, but this is relatively rare with the mumps vaccine. Secondary failure occurs when the body fails to maintain an adequate level of antibodies, despite having an initially strong response to the immunization. This is what we're seeing in the NHL.

Back in 2006, researchers found that college students who came down with mumps had been immunized more than ten years earlier than roommates who didn't contract the disease. A subsequent study confirmed this, revealing that protective antibodies were much lower in students who'd been vaccinated fifteen years earlier compared to students who'd been vaccinated just five years earlier. The takeaway here is that the mumps vaccine works, we just don't know how long it works.

Epidemiologists see evidence of waning immunity all the time. Last year, nearly one thousand Brits came down with mumps and half had been vaccinated. This year in the United States, a massive whooping cough outbreak caused by a bacterium called Bordatella pertussis popped up in people who received the pertussis vaccine. These findings have prompted experts to rethink the current vaccination schedules. We need a flu shot every year, do we need other vaccines just as frequently?
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Old 12-16-2014, 03:18 PM
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MUMPS

more on it

http://www.cdc.gov/mumps/outbreaks.html

Quote:
2014 Mumps Cases

From January 1 to November 29, 2014, 1,078 people in the United States have been reported to have mumps.

In 2013, 438 people from 39 states in the U.S. were reported to have mumps.
more info:

http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/vpd-vac/...lor-office.pdf

Quote:
Male and female teens and adults have different
complications than children. Up to 4 out of 10 adolescent and
adult males infected with mumps may have swelling of the
testicles, which rarely results in decreased fertility. About 1
out of 20 women who get mumps may have swelling of the
ovaries, but this does not affect fertility.

Mumps can be the most severe in adulthood, causing
complications such as meningitis (infection of the covering
around the brain and spinal cord). About 15 out of 100 adults
with mumps develop meningitis. This can include headache
and stiff neck, but most infected adults get well within 3 to
10 days. Pancreatitis, swelling of the pancreas (an organ with
many functions including helping to digest food), is usually
mild and can occur in 5 out of 100 adults with mumps.
Mumps infection during the early months of pregnancy has
been linked to miscarriage. Death from mumps is rare, but
when it happens, it occurs most often in adults.
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Old 12-16-2014, 05:50 PM
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SUPERBUGS

http://www.wired.com/2014/12/oneill-rpt-amr/

Quote:
If you weren’t taking antibiotic resistance seriously before, now would be a good time to start.

A project commissioned by the British government has released estimates of the near-future global toll of antibiotic resistance that are jaw-dropping in their seriousness and scale: 10 millions deaths per year, more than cancer, and at least $100 trillion in sacrificed gross national product.


The project, called the Review on Antimicrobial Resistance, was commissioned by UK Prime Minister David Cameron last summer, a follow-on to the dire report issued in 2013 by the UK’s Chief Medical Officer, which ranked resistance as serious a threat to society as terrorism. To chair the effort, Cameron recruited Jim O’Neill, previously the head of economic research for Goldman Sachs (and the person credited with coining the acronym BRICs — Brazil, Russia, India, China — as part of forecasting that global economic power would shift south and east). The Review is envisioned as a two-year project that will publish periodically, ending in July 2016 with recommendations for actions to blunt the threat that antibiotic resistance poses worldwide. (The project is supported by the nonprofit Wellcome Trust.)

Their first paper, released late last week, is based on work by two consulting teams, from RAND and KPMG, examining just the effect of resistance in six pathogens: three commonly resistant bacterial infections, Klebsiella pneumoniae, E. coli and MRSA; and three globally important diseases: HIV, TB and malaria. It doesn’t examine the effect of resistance in other pathogens; and it doesn’t attempt to estimate either healthcare costs or secondary social costs (more on that below). So it is a conservative effort, several different ways.

report here:
http://amr-review.org/sites/default/...0nations_1.pdf
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Old 12-22-2014, 09:19 PM
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SEASONAL FLU

http://www.cbsnews.com/news/flu-outb...tag=YHF4eb9d17

Quote:
Flu season is picking up steam just in time to ruin a lot of people's holidays. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reports widespread flu activity in 29 states, primarily in the South and Midwest. That's twice as many states as the previous week.

Most of the patients who have been hospitalized with severe cases of the flu are either very young or the very old. In recent days flu outbreaks have forced schools in Ohio, Tennessee, Georgia and North Carolina to close.

So far this season, the virus has killed 11 children.

Describing the pattern of this year's outbreak, Dr. Anne Schuchat, director of the CDC's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, told CBS News, "There's almost like a Christmas tree right in the middle of the country of the hot spots for disease."

.....
Health experts say part of the problem is that this year's vaccine doesn't provide protection for H3N2, the strain of the influenza that's currently making the rounds. This year's vaccine does help protect against H1N1 and one or two strains of influenza B.

Earlier this month the CDC issued a health advisory stating that only 48 percent of flu virus samples taken through last month were closely related to this year's vaccine.

"Because the H3N2 is dominating, we probably will see more disease," said Schuchat. "There might be reduced protection as opposed to zero protection," she said.

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Old 12-23-2014, 04:55 PM
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EBOLA

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/12/23/wo...f=science&_r=0

Quote:
There are reasons for both hope and continued worry about the Ebola epidemic in West Africa, Dr. Thomas R. Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, said on Monday.

Just back from a weeklong trip to the affected countries — Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone — Dr. Frieden said at a news conference, “I’m hopeful about stopping the epidemic, but I remain realistic that this is going to be a long, hard fight.”

The World Health Organization on Monday reported 19,340 Ebola cases, including 7,518 deaths in West Africa. Sierra Leone had the most cases, 8,939; Liberia had 7,830 and Guinea 2,571.

On the hopeful side, Dr. Frieden said he had visited a remote part of Guinea, where just a few months ago there was no treatment center and where resistance to visiting health workers had been intense. Now there is a center, established by the French Red Cross, with acceptance by the community, good care and patients surviving, Dr. Frieden said.

On the other hand, he said, he was alarmed to hear that on a recent day in Conakry, Guinea’s capital, there were not enough beds for all the patients who needed them. Leaving infected people in the community can lead to exponential spread of the disease, Dr. Frieden said, adding, “That’s what Conakry is at risk of.”

.....
But problems remain. For instance, Dr. Frieden said, some people in Monrovia, the capital, think treatment centers outside the city provide better care and take long taxi rides to those clinics, potentially infecting the drivers and making it harder to trace their contacts.

The epidemic will not end, he said, until every contact is traced and every chain of transmission broken.


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Old 12-29-2014, 06:36 AM
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WHOOPING COUGH

http://legalinsurrection.com/2014/12...c-in-70-years/

Quote:

Meanwhile, a new epidemic of a disease that was once thought well-contained by vaccinations may be occurring in my home state of California. The number of cases of whooping cough (pertussis) has skyrocketed this year.
Quote:
Nearly 10,000 cases have been reported in the state so far this year, and babies are especially prone to hospitalization or even death.

…Whooping cough is cyclical in nature and tends to peak every three to five years. The last outbreak of the disease in California was in 2010.

But doctors are discovering that immunity from the current vaccine may be wearing off on a similar timeline. Medical recommendations suggest booster shots after eight years, but doctors are seeing kids who received a booster three years ago getting sick. Public health officials are considering an update to the recommendations to account for the dip in immunity seen after three years.

Plus, many kids in some areas aren’t getting vaccinated at all. The highest rates of whooping cough are found in the Bay Area counties of Sonoma, Napa and Marin, which also have some of the highest rates of parents who opt out of vaccinating their children.

Doctors believe these kids are the root of the current and recent epidemics.
Whooping cough feels like a cold at first, but an intense cough that develops later can produce a “whooping” sound. The disease is caused by the bacterium Bordetella pertussis. It can be treated with antibiotics, but the drugs may not be effective when the illness is in the severe coughing stages. Whooping cough can last for weeks and is especially dangerous to infants under 1 year.

California isn’t the only state seeing jumps in pertussis infections.


......
A while vaccinations are encouraged to stop the spread of the disease, investigative reporter Sharyl Attkisson notes that, “it is likely the vaccinated population–not the unvaccinated population–is largely responsible for the resurgence in whooping cough.”

Specifically, Attkisson notes an article in The New York Times that reviews the findings of a study on vaccinated baboons.
Quote:
Baboons vaccinated against whooping cough could still carry the illness in their throats and spread it, research published in a science journal on Monday has found. The surprising new finding has not been replicated in people, but scientists say it may provide an important clue to a puzzling spike in the incidence of whooping cough across the country, which reached a 50-year high last year.

The whooping cough vaccines now in use were introduced in the 1990s after an older version, which offered longer-lasting protection, was found to have side effects. But over the years, scientists have determined that the new vaccines began to lose effectiveness after about five years, a significant problem that many researchers believe has contributed to the significant rise in whooping cough cases.

The new study, published on Monday in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, offers another explanation. Using baboons, the researchers found that recently vaccinated animals continued to carry the infection in their throats. Even though those baboons did not get sick from it, they spread the infection to others that were not vaccinated.
reminds me, i need to look into boosters
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Old 01-02-2015, 07:22 AM
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SEASONAL FLU

http://www.thedailybeast.com/article...i-vaxxers.html

Quote:
Now that flu season again is closing in on all of us, it’s time to trot out the annual debate about flu vaccines.

On one side are pro-vaccine stalwarts like those in public health (and yours truly), who look at the needle and syringe and see lives saved and hospitalizations averted. On the inevitable other side stand those against vaccination, people looking for plot, conspiracy, and intrigue in all the wrong places: the anti-vaccine brigade. Somehow, the discussion each year begins from scratch, Groundhog Day-style, with identical claims, counterclaims, and mud-slinging from all quarters.

This year, it must be admitted, the discussion is a bit more dicey—the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced a few weeks ago that this season’s vaccine is not such a good match, meaning that the vaccine may prevent fewer cases of influenza. On average, the vaccine has an efficacy of about 60 percent. This number is arrived at by comparing proven influenza rates in groups that vaccinated and those that didn’t—a fair-enough and simple-enough way to examine an extremely complex epidemiologic problem.

This year, the vaccine protection rate may be even lower because, even in the red-hot super-cool molecular science world of the 21st century, we still generate flu vaccine like it’s 1963. Here’s the staid approach: In winter each year, certified flu experts meet in a room and decide which of the dozens of strains circulating worldwide are likeliest to cause the most harm when the next winter’s flu season hits, eight to 10 months hence. They look at all sorts of data and then like weathermen forced by the ticking clock to make a judgment despite imperfect information, they vote three or four strains into the vaccine.

.....
It is this fear of giving the anti-vaxxers a leg up that has stifled any sort of honest discussion about the very real limits of the flu vaccine. Because let’s face it, by modern standards, where measles vaccine and hepatitis B vaccine are 99 percent effective in every study, a report card coming in at 60 percent efficacy is pretty lame.

Though this too is debatable given that 25,000 to 40,000 people a year die of influenza—the vast majority of them unvaccinated. A simple halving of the number with today’s mediocre vaccine would represent a major public-health triumph. By way of comparison, about 14,000 people in the U.S. died of AIDS in 2011—a vaccine to cut that number in half likely would result in a Nobel Prize.

In other words, the anti-vax crowd, basing their debate well outside the corridors of standard science, has somehow pushed the entire public-health discussion of how best to control infectious diseases to a place outside the rational and evidenced-based. And that’s where a flimsy but emotionally effective argument can do real harm by causing an outbreak not of influenza but of deliberate and profound misunderstanding.
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Old 01-02-2015, 07:24 AM
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MEASLES

http://abcnews.go.com/Health/north-c...ry?id=27903231

Quote:
A case of red measles, also known as Rubeola, was diagnosed earlier this week in Moorseville, North Carolina -- worrying health officials and highlighting the renewed threat of measles in this country.

The infected person was unvaccinated and had recently returned from a trip to India confirmed Rebecca Carter, the public information officer for Mecklenburg county. Carter said she could not release any additional details such as the age or sex of the person due to patient confidentiality.

.....
“People without gray hair forget that before vaccines became available, measles used to kill approximately 400 children a year in this country,” he said.

Before the MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) vaccine series became common practice there were hundreds of thousands of cases each year in the U.S., the Centers for Disease Control and Prevent reported. The disease has come roaring back as more people refuse or delay immunization, Schaffner noted.

This year there have been 610 confirmed measles cases reported to CDC's National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases. That is the highest number of cases since measles elimination was documented in the U.S. in 2000.

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