COVID-19 Infection Rate Sparks Return to Some Restrictions

In the last week, the CDC reported COVID hospitalizations have risen by another 21.6%

Roughly a year after President Biden assured the nation that the COVID-19 pandemic was effectively over, rising transmission and hospitalization rates have motivated some businesses and institutions to return to masking and distancing. While COVID-19 numbers are nowhere near their peak levels, sharp increases are a cause for concern, and both individuals and businesses should… Continue reading COVID-19 Infection Rate Sparks Return to Some Restrictions

Alpha-Gal Syndrome: Causes, Concerns, and Prevention

Tick and host associated factors linked with alpha-gal syndrome. Image: Frontiers

Alpha-Gal Syndrome is a peculiar disease. While it has affected thousands of patients across the US and Canada and carries long-lasting implications, recent reports show that over 40% of doctors have never even heard of it. With cases on the rise and an increasing level of media attention, there’s a growing demand for accurate and… Continue reading Alpha-Gal Syndrome: Causes, Concerns, and Prevention

Malaria Infections Identified in the US; CDC Issues Warning

On June 26, 2023, the Center for Disease Control (CDC) issued a Health Alert Network (HAN) Health Advisory in order to inform healthcare providers and policymakers about the following malaria infections:  Identification of locally acquired malaria cases (P. vivax) in two U.S. states (Florida [4] and Texas [1]) within the last 2 months, Concern for… Continue reading Malaria Infections Identified in the US; CDC Issues Warning

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Cyberattacks on Medical Facilities

Scripps Memorial Hospital Emergency Department in La Jolla. (Howard Lipin/Howard Lipin/The San Diego Union-Tribune)

Cyberattacks are a genuine concern in all industries, but the nature of health care and medical care centers brings some unique variables. As public awareness of cyberattacks on hospitals and other healthcare providers grows, medical professionals, business leaders, and policymakers face increasingly challenging questions about the impact and possible responses.  It is important to remember… Continue reading Cyberattacks on Medical Facilities

First Cases of Drug-Resistant Fungus Found in US

Highly contagious, drug resistant ringworm spreading in the US. Image: Getty

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has reported the first US cases of a drug-resistant fungus, which causes skin infections, rashes, and lesions. The first known patients, two women in New York City, have experienced symptoms including lesions on their backs, thighs, buttocks, and genitals. The fungus responsible, Trichophyton indotineae, is highly contagious and poses… Continue reading First Cases of Drug-Resistant Fungus Found in US

Candida auris Spreading Quickly Throughout US

Colonized Candida auris patients shed fungus via skin. Image: iStock

Amidst growing concerns about other drug-resistant diseases spreading throughout the world, in the US, a fungal disease, Candida auris, is a particular worry in some healthcare circles. Capable of causing serious infections and even fatalities, the growing potential for a Candida auris epidemic demands understanding, continued surveillance, and appropriate preparations.  What is Candida auris?  Candida… Continue reading Candida auris Spreading Quickly Throughout US

Marburg Virus Outbreaks in Africa Raise Concerns 

llness caused by Marburg virus begins abruptly, with high fever, severe headache and severe malaise. Muscle aches and pains are a common feature. Severe watery diarrhoea, abdominal pain and cramping, nausea and vomiting can begin on the third day. Image: Getty Images

A series of Marburg outbreaks in Africa have raised concerns about the potential future spread of this deadly disease and how that, in turn, might affect public health in nations around the world. With two outbreaks of the Marburg virus currently ongoing in two parts of Africa, there is a reasonable cause for worry. What… Continue reading Marburg Virus Outbreaks in Africa Raise Concerns 

FDA Advisory Committee Approves RSV Vaccines

2 month old infant, Dylan Elmore, hospitalized for RSV in 2019. Wilmington, North Carolina.

As concerns about the respiratory syncytial virus (RSV) continue, an FDA advisory committee recommended this week that the agency approve two vaccines designed to combat the virus for folks 60 and up.  Assuming the vaccines successfully complete the FDA and CDC processes, they will be the first RSV vaccine approved in the United States. The vaccines… Continue reading FDA Advisory Committee Approves RSV Vaccines

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Road Injuries and Road Fatalities

Adobe Stock Photo

While contagious diseases tend to take center stage in discussions of public health, the reality is that physical injuries constitute a valid public health concern. Over the last few years, road injuries have become increasingly common and thus increasingly prominent as a public health issue both in the US and around the world.  In examining… Continue reading Road Injuries and Road Fatalities

Lower Respiratory Infections (LRI) and RSV

RSV symptoms present different in infants, children and adults.

While COVID has occupied a great deal of public attention since its emergence in 2019/2020, in recent months, Lower Respiratory Infections (LRI) and Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) have demanded their own share of the limelight. Rates of both have reached concerning levels, and public health discourse is devoting more attention to them. While symptoms and… Continue reading Lower Respiratory Infections (LRI) and RSV

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Air Pollution

Office buildings in Beijing shrouded by pollution haze. Photo - Wong/AP

The European Commission has crafted a set of pollution rules for the European Union to implement by 2030. The end goal is to fully eliminate harmful pollutants in the air, water, and soil by 2050. While the fate of this policy and its actual outcomes remains to be seen, it has sparked a renewed focus… Continue reading Air Pollution

COVID-19 Update: January 2023

Jan 6 2023 in Shanghai. With hospitals overwhelmed, patients are being treated in every available space. Image courtesy of Washington Post.

As we move into 2023, the situation globally continues to evolve. The COVID-19 pandemic is likewise changing rapidly, and in some ways, that wasn’t fully anticipated as the previous year came to a close. As new trends, data, and circumstances emerge, projections and guidelines around COVID-19 will need to change, update, and adapt. Similarly, the… Continue reading COVID-19 Update: January 2023