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Thursday, December 04, 2014

Be Informed About Avian Influenza In British Colombia, Canada

Avian influenza (AI) is a contagious viral infection that can affect several species of food producing birds as well as pet birds and wild birds. AI viruses can be classified into two categories: low pathogenicity (LPAI) and highly pathogenic (HPAI) forms, based on the severity of the illness caused in birds.
Avian influenza viruses, such as the highly pathogenic H5N1 virus present in Asia, may, on rare occasions, cause disease in humans. Transmission to humans has occurred through close contact with infected birds or heavily contaminated environments.
In Canada, highly pathogenic avian influenza and low pathogenicity H5 and H7 avian influenza viruses are considered to be Notifiable Avian Influenza, which is a reportable disease under the Health of Animals Act. All cases must be reported to the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA).
More Info at CFIA

Wednesday, December 03, 2014

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) Works To Control Avian Influenza In British Columbia

 After testing by the Province of British Columbia, CIFA has confirmed the presence of H5 avian influenza on two farms in the Fraser Valley; a turkey farm in Abbotsford and a broiler breeder farm in Chilliwack.

CFIA continues avian influenza investigation in British Columbia

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) is continuing its investigation into an outbreak of avian influenza on two farms in British Columbia's Fraser Valley.
The two farms continue to be under quarantine to control disease spread, and two additional farms in the Fraser Valley have been placed under quarantine today. These farms were determined to be at high risk since they received birds from one of the original farms. Birds on these new farms were also showing signs of illness.
As avian influenza is highly contagious and can spread rapidly, it is possible that additional at-risk farms may be identified in the coming days. Poultry farmers are encouraged to report any suspicious symptoms to the CFIA.
The CFIA will continue to advise the public and the poultry industry if additional farms are confirmed to be affected.
Testing continues in order to confirm pathogenicity. Results are expected within days.
In the coming days, the CFIA will humanely euthanize and dispose of all birds on the infected premises in accordance with provincial environmental regulations and internationally accepted disease control guidelines.
When animals affected by a disease are ordered destroyed by the CFIA under the Health of Animals Act, the farmer is also informed that they will receive compensation. The CFIA is dedicated to working directly with affected producers so that the compensation process runs as smoothly as possible.
For animals ordered destroyed, the CFIA bases compensation amounts on the animal's market value (up to a maximum amount as stipulated in the Compensation for Destroyed Animals Regulations), taking into consideration factors such as genetic background, age and production records. For example, a normal eating chicken is assigned a rate of $20 per bird, a breeding chicken is $1200 per bird, a turkey is $70 per bird, and a breeding turkey is $1050 per bird. Please refer to the Schedule in the Regulations for accurate amounts.
Normally, a producer can expect compensation in 6 to 10 weeks.
Beyond the CFIA's compensation, other financial assistance may be available through programs administered by Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada, and, in some cases, provincial or territorial governments. Costs and losses considered by these programs may include business disruption and other extraordinary costs incurred due to disease.
Avian influenza viruses do not pose risks to food safety when poultry and poultry products are properly handled and cooked. Avian influenza rarely affects humans that do not have consistent contact with infected birds. Public health authorities stand ready to take precautionary measures as warranted.
The CFIA has mobilized all available resources to manage this situation. The Agency continues to work closely with the Province of British Columbia, the owners of the infected birds, and the poultry industry to manage this outbreak.

Tuesday, December 02, 2014

CDC Rapid Ebola Preparedness (REP) teams have assessed more than 50 facilities in 15 states and D.C.

The Hospitals Equipped With Ebola Treatment Centers In USA As Of 12/2/2014

This list will be updated weekly. The 35 hospitals with Ebola treatment centers listed alphabetically state-wise as of 12/2/2014 are :
  • Kaiser Oakland Medical Center; Oakland, California
  • Kaiser South Sacramento Medical Center; Sacramento, California
  • University of California Davis Medical Center; Sacramento, California
  • University of California San Francisco Medical Center; San Francisco, California
  • Emory University Hospital; Atlanta, Georgia
  • Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago; Chicago, Illinois
  • Northwestern Memorial Hospital; Chicago, Illinois
  • Rush University Medical Center; Chicago, Illinois
  • University of Chicago Medical Center; Chicago, Illinois
  • Johns Hopkins Hospital; Baltimore, Maryland
  • University of Maryland Medical Center; Baltimore, Maryland
  • National Institutes of Health Clinical Center; Bethesda, Maryland
  • Allina Health’s Unity Hospital; Fridley, Minnesota
  • Children’s Hospitals and Clinics of Minnesota - Saint Paul campus; St. Paul, Minnesota
  • Mayo Clinic Hospital - Rochester, Saint Marys Campus; Rochester, Minnesota
  • University of Minnesota Medical Center, West Bank campus, Minneapolis, Minnesota
  • Nebraska Medicine - Nebraska Medical Center; Omaha, Nebraska
  • North Shore System LIJ/Glen Cove Hospital; Glen Cove, New York
  • Montefiore Health System; New York City, New York
  • New York-Presbyterian/Allen Hospital; New York City, New York
  • NYC Health and Hospitals Corporation/HHC Bellevue Hospital Center; New York City, New York
  • Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital; New Brunswick, New Jersey
  • The Mount Sinai Hospital; New York City, New York
  • Children's Hospital of Philadelphia; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
  • University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston; Galveston, Texas
  • Methodist Hospital System in collaboration with Parkland Hospital System and the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center; Richardson, Texas
  • University of Virginia Medical Center; Charlottesville, Virginia
  • Virginia Commonwealth University Medical Center; Richmond, Virginia
  • Children’s Hospital of Wisconsin, Milwaukee; Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin – Froedtert Hospital, Milwaukee; Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • UW Health – University of Wisconsin Hospital, Madison, and the American Family Children’s Hospital, Madison; Madison, Wisconsin
  • MedStar Washington Hospital Center; Washington, D.C.
  • Children's National Medical Center; Washington, D.C.
  • George Washington University Hospital; Washington, D.C.

Monday, December 01, 2014

World Aids Day 2014. "Focus, Partner, Achieve: An AIDS-Free Generation"

On December 1, the whole world observe World AIDS Day. Mainly to raise awareness of the global impact of HIV/AIDS, to share the pains, achievements of those affected by it, both triumphant and defeated. Most importantly to raise awareness and achieve more positive results in the upcoming year. It is estimated that closer to 35 million people are living with HIV/AIDS worldwide. The theme for World AIDS Day 2014 – “Focus, Partner, Achieve: An AIDS-Free Generation” – reflects the drive to focus on interventions proven to work and to partner with a broad range of stakeholders to achieve control of the HIV epidemic and, ultimately, an AIDS-free generation.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Do not purchase or use Black Storm, FDA Recommendation

Black Storm: Public Notification - Undeclared Drug Ingredient

[Posted 11/24/2014]
AUDIENCE: Consumer
ISSUE: FDA is advising consumers not to purchase or use Black Storm. FDA laboratory analysis confirmed that Black Storm contains sildenafil, the active ingredient in the FDA-approved prescription drug Viagra, used to treat erectile dysfunction (ED). This undeclared ingredient may interact with nitrates found in some prescription drugs such as nitroglycerin and may lower blood pressure to dangerous levels. Men with diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or heart disease often take nitrates.
BACKGROUND: Black Storm is a product promoted and sold for sexual enhancement on various websites and possibly in some retail stores.
RECOMMENDATION: Do not purchase or use Black Storm.
Healthcare professionals and patients are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of these products to the FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program:
  • Complete and submit the report Online: www.fda.gov/MedWatch/report.htm
  • Download form or call 1-800-332-1088 to request a reporting form, then complete and return to the address on the pre-addressed form, or submit by fax to 1-800-FDA-0178
[11/24/2014 - Public Notification - FDA]
[11/24/2014 - Tainted Sexual Enhancement Products - FDA]

FDA Drug Safety Communication Regarding Biogen Idec's Tecfidera (dimethyl fumarate)

Tecfidera (dimethyl fumarate) by Biogen Idec: Drug Safety Communication - Case of Rare Brain Infection PML Reported

[Posted 11/25/2014]
AUDIENCE: Neurology
ISSUE: FDA is warning that a patient with multiple sclerosis (MS) who was being treated with Tecfidera (dimethyl fumarate) developed a rare and serious brain infection called progressive multifocal leukoencephalopathy (PML), and later died. The patient who died was not taking any other drugs that affect the immune system or drugs that are thought to be associated with PML. As a result, information describing this case of PML is being added to the Tecfidera drug label.
PML is a rare and serious brain infection caused by the John Cunningham (JC) virus. The JC virus is a common virus that is harmless in most people but can cause PML in some patients who have weakened immune systems.
See the FDA Drug Safety Communication for additional clinical information about this case.

  • Tecfidera is a drug used to treat relapsing forms of multiple sclerosis (MS), a brain and spinal cord disease in which patients experience multiple episodes of weakness, numbness, and other nervous system signs and symptoms that partially or completely resolve overs weeks or months. Patients may develop persistent symptoms and disability over time.
  • Approximately 4,000 patients have taken Tecfidera in MS clinical trials, including 1,000 patients treated for at least 4 years. Biogen reports that more than 100,000 patients with MS worldwide have taken Tecfidera since FDA approved it in 2013.

Friday, November 21, 2014

FDA Takes Enforcement Action Against Sandwich Company, Scotty’s Incorporated, Of Detroit, Michigan,

 FDA announced that it is seeking stop Scotty’s Incorporated, of Detroit, Michigan, which does business as Bruce Enterprises and Bruce’s Fresh Products, and Sandra J. Jackson, the firm’s co-owner and manager, from preparing and distributing ready-to-eat sandwiches, due to unsanitary conditions and for failing to comply with the Seafood Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) regulations.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration, in a complaint filed by the Department of Justice, is seeking to stop Scotty’s Incorporated, of Detroit, Michigan, which does business as Bruce Enterprises and Bruce’s Fresh Products, and Sandra J. Jackson, the firm’s co-owner and manager, from preparing and distributing ready-to-eat sandwiches.
Scotty’s has a history of manufacturing their ready-to-eat sandwiches under unsanitary conditions and failing to comply with the Seafood Hazard Analysis and Critical Control Point (HACCP) regulations.
“Based on the company’s previous failure to maintain sanitation controls, the FDA is taking action to protect public safety,” said Melinda K. Plaisier, the FDA’s associate commissioner of regulatory affairs.
The FDA issued a Warning Letter to the company in 2009 for failing to have adequate controls and processes in place to minimize the risk of contamination and for failing to have a written HACCP plan for the tuna salad sandwiches prepared at the business. The Warning Letter referenced at least two inspections and cited observations of unsanitary practices and conditions in the facility. In October 2010 and February 2014, FDA investigators documented the company’s failure to manufacture, package and store food under conditions and controls necessary to minimize the potential for growth of microorganisms and contamination. In addition, the defendants failed to make repairs and properly maintain equipment in the facility to prevent food from becoming adulterated.
The complaint for permanent injunction was filed by the U.S. Department of Justice on behalf of the FDA on November 21, 2014, in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan.
No illnesses have been reported to date associated with products from Scotty’s Incorporated, doing business as Bruce Enterprises and Bruce’s Fresh Products. Consumers can report problems with FDA-regulated products to their district office consumer complaint coordinator.
The FDA, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, protects the public health by assuring the safety, effectiveness, and security of human and veterinary drugs, vaccines and other biological products for human use, and medical devices. The agency also is responsible for the safety and security of our nation's food supply, cosmetics, dietary supplements, products that give off electronic radiation, and for regulating tobacco products.

Wednesday, November 19, 2014

Losartan May Be An Effective Treatment Option For Marfan Syndrome

This randomized trial, which was conducted by the NHLBI’s Pediatric Heart Network, ran from 2007-2011 at 21 clinical centers in the United States, Canada and Belgium and included 608 patients aged 6 months to 25 years.  The two drugs work in different ways. Atenolol works by relaxing blood vessels and slowing heart rate to improve blood flow and decrease blood pressure. Losartan also known as Cozaar, blocks the action of certain natural substances that tighten the blood vessels, allowing the blood to flow more smoothly and the heart to pump more efficiently.
The results of the Atenolol versus Losartan in Children and Young Adults with Marfan Syndrome study, supported by NIH’s National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (NHLBI), were presented today at the American Heart Association (AHA) Scientific Sessions in Chicago. The study was published simultaneously in the New England Journal of Medicine.

NIH Release

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Almost Whole Of USA (85%) Has Reached Freezing Point 32F (0C)

I am so glad I live in California and I only get snow when I really wants it of when I have to be in the east coast for family matters, during winter.
According to Dr. Ryan Maue, of WeatherBell, Yesterday was the coldest November morning since 1976: More than 85% of the surface of the contiguous United States reached or fell below freezing. And yes we get to hear about places like Buffalo in the news but it is much the same for most folks and will continue to be so for sometime. Dr. Maue forecasts record breaking low temperatures, in decades or centuries, in some cases. Be mindful and be safe.
Average 19.3F Click to enlarge.

" Record lows from Idaho to Nebraska and Iowa south to Texas and east through the Great Lakes, the eastern 2/3 of the US will shatter decades-long and in some cases, century-long records. Temperatures east of the Rockies will be 20-40°F below climate normals.
Brisk northwesterly winds in the Great Lakes will cause heavy lake effect snow which will be measured in feet from Michigan to New York state. Monday, almost half of the Lower-48 was blanketed in snow. Please visit Mashable and Washington Post Capital Weather Gang for daily updates.

Cold air pushes east thru Wednesday with a reinforcing shot of Arctic air with origin from the North Pole & Siberia to arrive on Thursday in the Great Lakes. Any relief is is 5-6 days away as Chicago, Minneapolis, and Detroit will struggle to rise above freezing until Saturday. 
"

India Has It's First Case Of Ebola

An Indian national who contacted and was cured of Ebola, has tested positive for the virus. He was in Liberia when he got infected. This makes the India's first known case of Ebola.

The patient was supposedly treated in Liberia and cured but was quarantined as a precaution when he arrived in New Delhi on Nov. 10. He has not displayed symptoms of Ebola, but his semen showed traces of the virus,  said in a statement Tuesday.

"It is a known fact that, during convalescence from Ebola Virus Disease, persons continue to shed virus in bodily fluids for variable periods, However, presence of virus in his semen samples may have the possibility of transmitting the disease through sexual route up to 90 days from time of clinical cure.India's health ministry has said.
Peter Piot, a former WHO official who was one of the discoverers of the virus, has in the past expressed concerns about the disease spreading to India. There are nearly 45,000 Indian nationals living in West Africa. Densely populated India is not adequately prepared to handle any spread of the highly infectious hemorrhagic fever among its 1.2 billion people.
Times of India

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Preventing Carbon Monoxide Poisoning

The winter is coming and there could be interruptions to electricity due to storms and other emergencies, leading to seek other power solutions. Always use portable generators, camp stoves, and charcoal and gas grills outside to prevent deadly CO poisoning.
  • Never use a gas range or oven to heat a home.
  • Never leave the motor running in a vehicle parked in an enclosed or partially enclosed space, such as a garage.
  • Never run a motor vehicle, generator, pressure washer, or any gasoline-powered engine outside an open window, door, or vent where exhaust can vent into an enclosed area.
  • Never run a generator, pressure washer, or any gasoline-powered engine inside a basement, garage, or other enclosed structure, even if the doors or windows are open, unless the equipment is professionally installed and vented. Keep vents and flues free of debris, especially if winds are high. Flying debris can block ventilation lines.
  • Never use a charcoal grill, hibachi, lantern, or portable camping stove inside a home, tent, or camper.
  • If conditions are too hot or too cold, seek shelter with friends or at a community shelter.
  • If CO poisoning is suspected, call your local Poison Control Center at 1-800-222-1222 or consult a health care professional right away.
More info at CDC

CDC Advice : Do not eat any products produced by Wholesome Soy Products, Inc.

Wholesome Soy Products, Inc. Sprouts Recall and Investigation of Human Listeriosis Cases;

  • Do not eat any products produced by Wholesome Soy Products, Inc. These products include:
    • Bean sprouts
    • Soft tofu
    • Firm tofu
    • Fried tofu pouches
    • Triangular tofu
    • Fried tofu
    • White tofu
    • Soybean noodles
    • Soy milk
  • If you think you might have become ill with signs and symptoms of listeriosis after eating products produced by Wholesome Soy Products, Inc., consult your health care provider.
  • If any products from Wholesome Soy Products, Inc. are or were in your home:
    • Dispose of products in a closed plastic bag placed in a sealed trash can to prevent people and animals from eating the products.
    • Wash the inside walls and shelves of the refrigerator, cutting boards, and countertops; then sanitize these items with a solution of one tablespoon of chlorine bleach to one gallon of hot water.
    • Dry these items with a clean cloth or clean paper towel.
    • Wipe up spills in the refrigerator immediately, and clean the refrigerator regularly.
    • Always wash your hands with warm water and soap after cleaning and sanitizing.
  • Always practice food safety to avoid illness from contaminated sprouts.
    • Be aware that sprouts are a known source of foodborne illness.
    • Make sure that children, older adults, pregnant women, and people with weakened immune systems avoid eating raw sprouts of any kind (including alfalfa, clover, radish, and mung bean sprouts).
    • Cook sprouts thoroughly to reduce the risk of illness. Cooking sprouts thoroughly kills harmful bacteria.

Mali Added To EBOLA List, CDC Travel Advisory

Mali Added To EBOLA List, CDC Travel Advisory
 
The purpose of this alert is to notify travelers that a few Ebola cases have been reported in Bamako, Mali, and to inform them of actions they can take to reduce their risk of getting the disease.
CDC recommends that travelers to Mali protect themselves by avoiding contact with the blood and body fluids of people who are sick, because of the possibility they may be sick with Ebola. Although a cluster of cases has been reported only in Bamako, travelers to all parts of Mali should be alert for reports of possible further spread within the country.

As of November 12, 2014, the World Health Organization reported a cluster of Ebola cases in Bamako, Mali (see box for case counts). (An unrelated death from Ebola occurred in Kayes, Mali on October 24, 2014 and no additional cases related to that person have been reported.) The cluster in Bamako is linked to a man who had been in a clinic in Bamako after becoming sick in Guinea. Since that time, a small number of Ebola cases linked to this patient have been reported in Bamako. The Malian government has taken actions to contain further spread. CDC recommends that travelers to Mali protect themselves by avoiding contact with the blood and body fluids of people who are sick and following the other recommendations listed below.
The cases of Ebola in Bamako, Mali, are related to an ongoing Ebola outbreak that has been occurring since March 2014 in Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone and is the largest outbreak of Ebola in history.

Bad Medicine, Can You Trust Big PHarma, Clinical Trial Data Or Even FDA?

I was searching for information on cold / flu season that is ahead of us. I did find some information but I got stuck at "Bad Medicine". It is hard even to think about this after reading an article on Newsweek. The following is an excerpt from the article and have left me totally confused. Follow the link after the jump for the complete article.
Millions have taken Tamiflu and still living but if Tamiflu does nothing, and there’s even a slight chance of life-threatening side effects, why was it approved? And why continue to prescribe it? That’s what the Cochrane Collaboration argued in a report it published in April.
Do you still want Tamiflu this cold / flu season. Looks like only Tamiflu, I would take is the fake Tamiflu that appeared in 2005, an export from China, at lease it had Vitamin C.

On the morning of March 2, 2005, a 14-year-old Japanese girl woke up scared. At first she thought someone was outside the house watching her, but then she decided the stranger must be inside. She wandered restlessly and, despite the cold weather, threw open all the windows. Later, over a meal, she declared, “The salad is poisoned.” Two days later, she said she wanted to kill herself.
This teenager with no history of mental illness was diagnosed with delirium. The night before the hallucinations started, she began taking an anti-influenza drug called Tamiflu (generic name: oseltamivir), which governments around the world have spent billions stockpiling for the next major flu outbreak.
But evidence released earlier this year by  Cochrane Collaboration, a London-based nonprofit, shows that a significant amount of negative data from the drug’s clinical trials were hidden from the public. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) knew about it, but the medical community did not; the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), which doesn’t have the same access to unpublished data as regulators, had recommended the drug without being able to see the full picture. When results from those unpublished trials finally did emerge, they cast doubt over whether Tamiflu is as effective as the manufacturer says.
..........
That Japanese girl, whose case was detailed in an FDA report, did not kill herself. But at least 70 people have died, many of them by suicide, after Tamiflu-induced episodes. The deaths were almost surreal: A 14-year-old who took Tamiflu jumped off a balcony, and a 17-year-old on the drug ran in front of a truck. Scientists documented other cases of “psychopathic events,” including a South Korean girl who temporarily developed bipolar disorder and an 8-year-old Japanese boy who wouldn’t answer to his name and began to growl.

Big Pharma Plays Hide-the-Ball With Data NewsWeek
fake Tamiflu that appeared in 2005

Friday, November 14, 2014

Non-GMO Labeling Validity Class Action Suit. Richard v. Whole Foods

The GMO labeling class action lawsuit filed in the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Los Angeles, alleges Whole Foods illegally sold misbranded products to consumers in California and throughout the United States. Richard seeks an injunction to prevent Whole Foods from continuing to market and sell these allegedly misbranded products as well as an award of damages to Class Members.
Richard asserts that Whole Foods has violated California’s Unfair Business Practices Act, False Advertising Act and Consumers Legal Remedies Act. The Whole Foods class action lawsuit also asserts claims for negligent misrepresentation and breach of quasi-contract.
The crux of the suit is accusation of falsely marketing Blue Diamond brand almond milk products as “Non-GMO.” This specific label refers to a certification provided by the Non-GMO Project, a 501(c)(3) non-profit that provides “verifications” to companies whose products comply with its private guidelines, the Non-GMO Project Standard. Is it valid?
Richard is represented by Brett Shainfeld and Jessica Anvar of Shainfeld ; Anvar PC and Todd Friedman of the Law Offices of Todd M. Friedman PC.
The Whole Foods GMO Labeling Class Action Lawsuit is Michelle Richard v. Whole Foods Market California Inc., Case No. BC563304, in the Superior Court of the State of California, County of Los Angeles.
It will be a very interesting and important case to watch.

Via Consumer Product Matters

Trumenba Approved To Prevent Serogroup B Meningococcal Disease

FDA has approved Trumenba, a product of Wyeth Pharmaceuticals, Inc., the first vaccine to prevent Serogroup B Meningococcal deseace.
Meningococcal disease is a life-threatening illness caused by bacteria that infect the bloodstream (sepsis) and the lining that surrounds the brain and spinal cord (meningitis). N. meningitidis is a leading cause of bacterial meningitis. The bacteria are transmitted from person to person through respiratory or throat secretions (e.g., by coughing, kissing, or sharing eating utensils). According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, about 500 total cases of meningococcal disease were reported in the United States in 2012; of those cases, 160 were caused by serogroup B.
“Recent outbreaks of serogroup B Meningococcal disease on a few college campuses have heightened concerns for this potentially deadly disease,” said Karen Midthun, M.D., director of the FDA’s Center for Biologics Evaluation and Research. “The FDA’s approval of Trumenba provides a safe and effective way to help prevent this disease in the United States.”

Sign Up For Affordable Health Coverage For 2015, Starting Nov - 15, Tommorow.


Open enrollment 2015 starts on November 15 - and making sure you're ready starts at healthcare.gov. Visit the site and sign up to receive reminders before important coverage deadlines, as well as notifications when new prices and plans for 2015 are available.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Frostbite! Avoid It, Stay Out Of The Cold Or Protect Uncovered Skin.

  • Frostbite is an injury to the body that is caused by freezing.
  • Frostbite causes a loss of feeling and color in the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers, or toes.
  • Seek medical care if you think you have frostbite.
Frostbite is an injury to the body that is caused by freezing. Frostbite causes a loss of feeling and color in affected areas. It most often affects the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers, or toes. Frostbite can permanently damage the body, and severe cases can lead to amputation. The risk of frostbite is increased in people with reduced blood circulation and among people who are not dressed properly for extremely cold temperatures.

Recognizing Frostbite

At the first signs of redness or pain in any skin area, get out of the cold or protect any exposed skin—frostbite may be beginning. Any of the following signs may indicate frostbite:
  • a white or grayish-yellow skin area
  • skin that feels unusually firm or waxy
  • numbness
A victim is often unaware of frostbite until someone else points it out because the frozen tissues are numb.

What to Do

If you detect symptoms of frostbite, seek medical care. Because frostbite and hypothermia both result from exposure, first determine whether the victim also shows signs of hypothermia, as described previously. Hypothermia is a more serious medical condition and requires emergency medical assistance.
If (1) there is frostbite but no sign of hypothermia and (2) immediate medical care is not available, proceed as follows:
  • Get into a warm room as soon as possible.
  • Unless absolutely necessary, do not walk on frostbitten feet or toes—this increases the damage.
  • Immerse the affected area in warm—not hot—water (the temperature should be comfortable to the touch for unaffected parts of the body).
  • Or, warm the affected area using body heat. For example, the heat of an armpit can be used to warm frostbitten fingers.
  • Do not rub the frostbitten area with snow or massage it at all. This can cause more damage.
  • Don’t use a heating pad, heat lamp, or the heat of a stove, fireplace, or radiator for warming. Affected areas are numb and can be easily burned.
These procedures are not substitutes for proper medical care. Hypothermia is a medical emergency and frostbite should be evaluated by a health care provider. It is a good idea to take a first aid and emergency resuscitation (CPR) course to prepare for cold-weather health problems. Knowing what to do is an important part of protecting your health and the health of others.
Taking preventive action is your best defense against having to deal with extreme cold-weather conditions. By preparing your home and car in advance for winter emergencies, and by observing safety precautions during times of extremely cold weather, you can reduce the risk of weather-related health problems.
CDC

Friday, November 07, 2014

Yes On 45 Organization Issues A Post Election Statement.

Via Consumer watchdog Organization.
$100 million spent by insurance companies against our two pro-consumer initiatives, coupled with an historic low voter turnout, was a recipe for consumers to lose Tuesday night.

The defeat of California Propositions 45 and 46 are a sobering reminder of the power of big corporate money in California politics when the electorate is not engaged. A mere 5 million Californians voted Tuesday, dwarfing even the worst voter turnout estimates. The insurance companies' barrage of negative advertising suppressed the vote and drove voters away from the polls.

The consumer rip-offs by health insurance companies targeted in Prop 45, and the threats to patients’ safety addressed by Prop 46, are profound problems that will not go away.
We will not give up the fight until justice is done on both fronts.
The insurance companies may have the money, but we have the truth: More must be done to rein in price gouging insurance companies and a medical-insurance complex unaccountable to injured patients, including those who suffer at the hands of impaired doctors.
The public wants protections against excessive rates, but insurance companies spent $57 million on deceptive advertising that hid their role in opposing Prop 45 and lied about its impact. Insurance price gouging is going to intensify without Proposition 45’s protections.
Health insurance companies cannot hide from rate regulation in California forever. We will continue to expose health insurance company profiteering and make the case with the public and the legislature for health insurance companies to be as accountable for the rates they charge as business, home and auto insurance companies are.
The fight for greater patient safety will go on too in the court of public opinion, the regulatory process, the legislature, the courts and, if need be, the initiative process.
The families of innocent victims of negligence deserve access to justice. All Californians deserve to know they are safe from drunk, high and negligent physicians. We won’t rest until patients are protected. Our efforts generated widespread acknowledgment of these problems that have been ignored for the better part of four decades in California.
The fight for the patient and consumer protections embodied in Props 45 and 46 is just beginning. We will continue that battle.
Insurance companies will be accountable for their rip-offs and for medical negligence. Consumers will have their day. Justice will be done.
Thanks for all you support. Stay tuned as we debrief and report back on our next steps.

“This was a battle worth fighting. But the battle doesn’t stop here", Bob Pack.




DANVILLE, CA – Bob Pack, the author of Proposition 46 who lost his two children Troy and Alana due to medical negligence, released the following statement:
“This was a battle worth fighting. But the battle doesn’t stop here.
We’ve opened the eyes of all Californians about patient safety.
We opened eyes about prescription drug abuse, about doctors suffering from substance abuse and about the injustice of medical malpractice.
Prop 46 would have helped tremendously. It would have saved lives. But it faced deep-pocketed opposition from the insurance industry. At least in this election, insurance industry profits trumped patient safety.
Now, we have more work to do. We live in a nation where preventable medical errors are the third leading cause of death – 440,000 each year. That’s just plain wrong and needs to change.
Our coalition will continue to press for changes to end that cycle of preventable death, to put a dent in prescription drug abuse, ensure our doctors aren’t operating under the influence and give malpractice victims a better shot at justice.
To the victims of medical negligence and their families, I am grateful that our paths have crossed and I’m honored to have campaigned alongside you: some of the bravest and most passionate people I have ever met. I commend all of you for standing with me before California voters to tell your stories. I know from personal experience that it can be tough to share your story of loss with strangers day after day. For us, this fight has been both emotional and personal.
You have debated, knocked on doors, shared your stories, spoken at events, made phone calls, written emails, educated your networks on social media, engaged your communities, and supported one another along the way. All of your efforts have gotten us one step closer to improving patient safety and one step closer to access to justice.
Our fight does not end here. Each and every one of you has acted courageously to harness your strength and share your message with the world. You have stood up against powerful industries and given them a run for their money. I urge you to keep fighting, because so many families have been denied justice.
Carmen and I will continue to work to make California’s patients safer. We hope you will join us. Keep fighting for patient safety. Keep fighting for justice. Take what we have built together and carry it forward.
From our family to yours, we wish you all the best.
This battle is not over.”
Download Press Release.

Monday, November 03, 2014

Doctors That Harm, Dr. Wilfred Weinstein + Oxycodone


Dr. Wilfred Weinstein
Physician Had An Undetected Years-Long Prescription Drug Habit
LOS ANGELES, CA: In April 2010, Dr. Weinstein was caught shoplifting; when he was searched, police found that he was carrying 291 pills of Oxycodone. Dr. Weinstein was arrested for possession of a controlled substance with intent to sell, a felony. He pled guilty.
Over a year later, in August 2011, the Medical Board began an investigation into Dr. Weinstein’s felony conviction. In an interview, Dr. Weinstein admitted that he had an undetected daily drug habit since 2006: he would begin taking oxycodone as early as 6:30 in the morning before heading into work, and he would often take more pills over his lunch break. Dr. Weinstein told the investigator that he had been taking between six to eight oxycodone a day, including workdays. In order to get access to the drugs, he would write prescriptions in his wife’s name and then fill the prescriptions for himself.
Three years after his initial arrest, the Medical Board finally imposed disciplinary action, placing Dr. Weinstein on probation. Six months into his probation, Dr. Weinstein decided that he didn’t want to practice medicine anymore and surrendered his medical license.
Sources: http://www2.mbc.ca.gov/BreezePDL/default.aspx?licenseType=A&licenseNumber=31553
Proposition 46, the Troy and Alana Pack Patient Safety Act, will enact the first law in the nation to require random drug and alcohol tests of physicians in hospitals, modeled after the Federal Aviation Administration testing program that has successfully reduced substance abuse by pilots. Doctors found to be impaired on the job will have their license suspended. If Prop 46 had been in effect, Dr. Weinstein’s drug addiction may have been detected, possibly preventing threats to patient safety in the process.
Prop 46 would also require prescribers to check California’s existing and secure prescription drug database, known as CURES, when prescribing Schedule II-III narcotics. If this provision had been in effect, it’s possible that Dr. Weinstein’s illegal prescribing may have been discovered.
Hall of Shame: Insurance Companies Backing No on 46
NorCal Mutual Insurance Company $11,000,000.00
The Doctors Company $10,500,000.00
Cooperative of American Physicians $10,161,489.04
Kaiser Foundation Health Plan $5,000,000.00
Medical Insurance Exchange of California $5,000,000.00
The Dentists Insurance Company $1,620,000.00
The Mutual Risk Retention Group $1,000,000.00
All Insurers: $44,613,583.22
Total: $59,169,984.79
Insurance companies have spent nearly $45 million dollars to oppose Prop 46 in order to shield dangerous doctors like Dr. Weinstein from punishment, at the expense of patient safety, in order to protect their already substantial profits. In total, the opposition to Prop 46 has over $59 million dollars in their warchest, outspending consumer and patient safety advocates more than 8:1.

Good Bye Brittany Maynard, Rest In Peace!

Terminally Ill Brittany Maynard Has Ended Her Own Life.

Depending on how you view the issue, Oregon's Death with Dignity Act – has helped Brittany, a 29 year old woman, end her life by taking a fatal dose of barbiturates, prescribed to her by a doctor, when her suffering became too great.
She was diagnosed with a likely stage 4 glioblastoma and surgery to remove it did not help as it came back even larger. She moved to Oregon, from California, to seek the help of Death with Dignity Act, with her family. It is not an easy decision to make and she wanted to live but the stakes of suffering was high and she chose what is best for her.
"For people to argue against this choice for sick people really seems evil to me,They try to mix it up with suicide and that's really unfair, because there's not a single part of me that wants to die. But I am dying." she told PEOPLE.
"My glioblastoma is going to kill me and that's out of my control, I've discussed with many experts how I would die from it and it's a terrible, terrible way to die. So being able to choose to go with dignity is less terrifying." 
She launched a video campaign with Compassion & Choices, an end-of-life choice advocacy organization, to support and expand death with dignity laws nationwide.
Brittany graduated from UC Berkeley as an undergrad, and received a Masters in Education from UC Irvine. She believed in compassion, equity, and that people would remember most how you made them feel in life. As Faulkner said, "Never be afraid to raise your voice for honesty and truth and compassion against injustice and lying and greed. If more people all over the world would do this, the world would change." 
Good Bye Brittany

Senator Barbara Boxer speaks out for Proposition 46! Yes On 46


United States Senator Barbara Boxer speaks supporting Proposition 46 in a new advertisement featuring the photos of children lost to preventable medical errors. Another bunch of reasons to support #Yeson46.

Sunday, November 02, 2014

Proposition 46 WIll Bring Improved Patient Safety Protections, Yes On 46.

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Families of victims of medical negligence gathered Monday to urge voters to support a political effort for greater patient safety protections.
Carmen Pack – a mom who says her two children were killed due to medical negligence – and Annette Ramirez, a South Bay mother who lost her arms and legs due to infection after surgery, both say passing Proposition 46 will prevent other families from suffering similar tragedies.
Supporters say Proposition 46 creates greater accountability for medical negligence by indexing a 38-year-old cap on damages for inflation and detecting and deterring physicians’ over-prescribing and substance abuse.
U.S. Senator Barbara Boxer was among several officials on hand to endorse the Yes on 46 campaign, which released its first Spanish language television ad featuring Pack whose husband Bob is the author of Prop. 46.
The Pack’s children, Troy, 10, and Alana, 7, were killed by intoxicated driver who had been recklessly prescribed narcotics by multiple doctors at the same Kaiser hospital.
According to the Packs, they were unable to hold doctors legally accountable because of the Medical Injury Compensation Reform Act. Passed in 1975, MICRA places a $250,000 cap on noneconomic damages in medical malpractice cases.
“If your loved one is killed by medical negligence, no matter how serious or egregious and it’s a child who dies, there’s no wage loss or medical bills, you won’t get an attorney,” said Jamie Court of Consumer Watchdog.
Court says the initiative would raise the existing cap on damages to $1.1 million, giving children and seniors who cannot demonstrate lost wages as a result of their injuries a chance to hold doctors and hospitals accountable for their mistakes.
Video

Friday, October 31, 2014

Doctors That Harm, Why Yes On 46 Is Needed, Doctor Trades Prescription Drugs For Cocaine,

CARMEL, CA: Dr. Bergstrom was arrested based on a report of sexual assault after a night of drinking.
During the trial, the prosecution produced an audiotape which Dr. Bergstrom had accidentally created when he left his office dictation machine on. Dr. Bergstrom was heard buying cocaine, using cocaine, and trading cocaine for sex on the 5.5 hours-long audiotape. Dr. Bergstrom admitted at trial that he traded prescription drugs for cocaine.
The audiotape also recorded Dr. Bergstrom issuing medical orders, dictating patient chart notes, and providing telephone consultations to patients after using, and while under the influence of, cocaine.
During the trial, two other women testified that they were similarly assaulted by Dr. Bergstrom. Both testified that they believed that they may have been drugged.
Dr. Bergstrom was ultimately sentenced to prison for felony sexual battery. As a result, Dr. Bergstrom's medical license was revoked.
Sources: http://www2.mbc.ca.gov/BreezePDL/default.aspx?licenseType=G&licenseNumber=59866
http://www.fugitive.com/2009/09/28/doctor-carl-bergstrom-of-carmel-sentenced-to-six-years-prison-for-forcible-sodomy/
http://www.montereyherald.com/ci_22451966/carmel-physician-carl-bergstrom-be-released-from-jail

Proposition 46, the Troy and Alana Pack Patient Safety Act, will enact the first law in the nation to require random drug and alcohol tests of physicians in hospitals, modeled after the Federal Aviation Administration testing program that has successfully reduced substance abuse by pilots. Doctors found to be impaired on the job will have their license suspended. If Prop 46 had been in effect, Dr. Bergstrom's drug abuse may have been detected, possibly preventing threats to patient safety in the process.
Hall of Shame: Insurance Companies Backing No on 46
NorCal Mutual Insurance Company    $11,000,000.00
The Doctors Company    $10,500,000.00
Cooperative of American Physicians    $10,161,489.04
Kaiser Foundation Health Plan    $5,000,000.00
Medical Insurance Exchange of California    $5,000,000.00
The Dentists Insurance Company    $1,620,000.00
The Mutual Risk Retention Group    $1,000,000.00
All Insurers:     $44,613,583.22
Total:     $59,169,984.79

Insurance companies have spent nearly $45 million dollars to oppose Prop 46 in order to shield dangerous doctors like Dr. Bergstrom from punishment, at the expense of patient safety, in order to protect their already substantial profits. In total, the opposition to Prop 46 has over $59 million dollars in their warchest, outspending consumer and patient safety advocates more than 8:1.
Learn more about Proposition 46 and the campaign for patient safety at: www.yeson46.org
 -30-
Paid for by Yes on Prop. 46, Your Neighbors for Patient Safety, a Coalition of Consumer Attorneys and Patient Safety Advocates - major funding by Consumer Attorneys of California Issues and Initiative Defense Political Action Committees and Kabateck, Brown, Kellner, LLP.

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Redondo Beach Doctor Facing Multiple Drug Charges, Arrested Again On 2 Million Prescription Drug Stash

#yeson46
Another case for those who are still wondering about Yes On 46, These doctors need to be put on watch. Prop 46 will prevent doctor turned drug dealers from operating. It must be really profitable than actual medical work.

A Redondo Beach doctor already charged in two drug cases was arrested Tuesday on charges that he illegally possessed an estimated $2 million in diet pills and other prescription drugs that were found in a Long Beach storage facility.
Dr. Gerard Geoffrey Goryl, who had been barred from possessing narcotics as a result of the two previous pending cases, is now charged with 18 felony drug-related counts in a third case.
The neurologist pleaded not guilty to the latest charges, which include eight counts of possession of narcotics with a restricted license and 10 counts of possession for sale of a controlled substance.
Goryl, 59, was taken into custody after the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the Redondo Beach Police Department determined that he had a storage locker containing an estimated 500,000 diet pills and other prescription drugs, according to the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
The physician was ordered to remain in jail on $1 million bail in connection with the latest case. He had been free on $1 million bail and $120,000 bail in the other two cases against him.
Goryl, who ran a medical clinic called A Better Weigh on Artesia Boulevard, was first arrested in June and charged with nine felony counts involving allegations that he sold prescription drugs to undercover officers.
He was rearrested in August and charged with eight felony counts alleging that he was continuing to sell a prescription diet pill despite being barred from doing so.
A date is scheduled to be set Nov. 17 for a hearing to determine if there is enough evidence to require him to stand trial.
If convicted in all three cases, he faces up to 36 years and eight months behind bars, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

Thanks for the link Michael

Doctors That Harm - The Real Stories Insurance Companies Against Prop 46 Don't Want You To Know:

SAN FRANCISCO, CA -- After suspicious behavior and inconsistencies were revealed in a routine audit of controlled substances, Dr. Trindle was asked to submit to a drug test. He tested positive for Fentanyl.
At the time, Dr. Trindle was participating in a now-defunct diversion program for substance abusing physicians. Doctors were allowed to continue to practice and keep their substance abuse secret from patients. After failing five state audits, this program no longer exists; currently, there is no program for substance abusing doctors to get the help they need. Dr. Trindle eventually failed out of the program.
After his positive drug test, the Medical Board opened an investigation. Dr. Trindle admitted to a Medical Board investigator that he had stolen Fentanyl, Sufenta, and Propofol from his hospital. He also admitted to working at the hospital while under the influence. The Medical Board called Dr. Trindle's actions "potentially injurious to the patients at the hospital that he was treating."
Before the Medical Board could discipline Dr. Trindle for being impaired at work, Dr. Trindle caused a car crash with a blood alcohol level of 0.19%, more than double the legal limit. Even though the other driver had been hurt, Dr. Trindle fled the scene. He was eventually caught and arrested.
The Medical Board placed Dr. Trindle on probation, requiring random drug screenings. While on probation, Dr. Trindle tested positive for alcohol – a blatant violation of his probation. Two months later, Dr. Trindle again tested positive for alcohol. Still, the Medical Board did nothing. Finally, a positive drug test for cocaine eventually led to Dr. Trindle's surrender of his medical license.
Sources: http://www2.mbc.ca.gov/BreezePDL/default.aspx?licenseType=G&licenseNumber=63287

Proposition 46, the Troy and Alana Pack Patient Safety Act, will enact the first law in the nation to require random drug and alcohol tests of physicians in hospitals, modeled after the Federal Aviation Administration testing program that has successfully reduced substance abuse by pilots. Doctors found to be impaired on the job will have their license suspended. If Prop 46 had been in effect, Dr. Trindle’s drug and alcohol abuse may have been detected, possibly preventing threats to patient safety in the process.
Hall of Shame: Insurance Companies Backing No on 46
NorCal Mutual Insurance Company    $11,000,000.00
Cooperative of American Physicians    $10,161,489.04
The Doctors Company    $10,000,000.00
Kaiser Foundation Health Plan    $5,000,000.00
Medical Insurance Exchange of California    $5,000,000.00
The Dentists Insurance Company    $1,620,000.00
The Mutual Risk Retention Group    $1,000,000.00
All Insurers:     $43,916,007.28
Total:     $58,465,858.90

Insurance companies have spent nearly $44 million dollars to oppose Prop 46 in order to shield dangerous doctors like Dr. Trindle from punishment, at the expense of patient safety, in order to protect their already substantial profits. In total, the opposition to Prop 46 has over $58 million dollars in their warchest, outspending consumer and patient safety advocates more than 8:1.
Learn more about Proposition 46 and the campaign for patient safety at: www.yeson46.org
(The original article states the following but we were not paid for publishing this, We are doing it on our own free will)
Paid for by Yes on Prop. 46, Your Neighbors for Patient Safety, a Coalition of Consumer Attorneys and Patient Safety Advocates - major funding by Consumer Attorneys of California Issues and Initiative Defense Political Action Committees and Kabateck, Brown, Kellner, LLP.

Insurance Companies Resorts To Koch Brothers Tactics.Against Prop 45.



From Hoover.org Poll, Follow the link below to read the whole report


The health insurance companies spending $57 million to defeat Prop 45's rate relief are using a page from the "Creepy Uncle Sam" advertisements circulated by Koch Brothers groups against Obamacare in mailers sent to women across the state.Sending mailer across the state.
They must be getting desperate because today a new Hoover Institution Poll puts Proposition 45 ahead by 12 points, 42% to 30% just seven days before the Election.
View the poll: http://www.hoover.org/sites/default/files/golden-state-poll-october-2014-results.pdf


Linda Raffel of Los Angeles and an Anthem Blue Cross individual policyholder said, “My premium has more than quadrupled, and co-pays have skyrocketed. I’m getting $196 worth of health insurance for $854 a month. It’s my insurance company and huge costs, not Prop 45, that are standing in between me and the treatment my doctors recommend. Prop 45 will make sure I get the coverage I pay for.”
Proposition 45 will require health insurance companies to open their books and justify premium increases, under penalty of perjury, before they take effect. It does not effect treatment options – it prevents health insurance companies from charging an excessive price for coverage. 35 other states already regulate health insurance rates, but not California. Prop 45 would simply extend California’s existing regulation of auto, home and business insurance that has saved drivers $102 billion since 1988, to health insurance companies.
For more visit: www.YesOn45.org
More about the mailer at Consumer Watchdog.

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