March 13, 2009 The Pump Handle 4Comment

by revere, cross-posted from Effect Measure I’m just getting around to reading the Brief Report by Blachere et al., “Measurement of airborne influenza virus in a hospital emergency department” (Clinical Infectious Diseases 2009:48:483-440) but it’s quite interesting. We’ve noted fairly often here that we still don’t know for sure what the main modes of transmission […]

March 12, 2009 The Pump Handle 2Comment

In today’s New York Times, columnist Nicholas Kristof turns his attention to a problem that’s been worrying the public health community for the past several years: MRSA, or methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus. The bacteria’s antibiotic resistance makes it hard to fight, and it’s responsible for a growing toll of deaths over the past year – including […]

March 2, 2009 The Pump Handle 2Comment

by revere, cross-posted from Effect Measure The scientific literature is full of specialized papers that on their face would seem to be of little interest. Here’s a title like that: “Prevalence and seasonality of influenza-like illness in children, Nicaragua, 2005-2007” (Gordon et al., Emerging Infectious Diseases 2009 Mar). Over 4000 Nicaraguan children, aged 2 to […]

January 26, 2009 The Pump Handle

by revere, cross-posted at Effect Measure The peanut butter/peanut paste ingredient based salmonella outbreak has been in the news lately and we’ve discussed it here (and here, here, here, here, here). There are now about 500 reported cases and six deaths. That’s a case fatality ratio of just over 1%. So what if there were […]

October 10, 2008 The Pump Handle 2Comment

by revere, cross-posted at Effect Measure Every parent’s or grandparent’s nightmare is to have their darling little one suddenly carried off by illness. Flu isn’t on the radar screen of most parents but in recent years the public health community is taking notice. The first alarm occurred in the bad flu season of 2003 – […]

March 25, 2008 The Pump Handle

Rachel Nugent at Global Health Policy reminds us that it’s World TB Day. She’s got good news and bad news about tuberculosis around the globe. On the plus side, tuberculosis control funding has reached an all-time high, and the number of TB cases per capita has dropped. On the minus side, the number of cases is […]

January 14, 2008 The Pump Handle

Revere at Effect Measure addresses a troubling article, published in yesterday’s Atlanta Journal-Constitution, about the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s handling of the Andrew Speaker tuberculosis case. You might remember the case, because it got a lot of media attention. Speaker was the Atlanta lawyer who was thought to have XDR TB and boarded […]

August 31, 2007 The Pump Handle 9Comment

by Susan F. Wood, PhD  Today’s Washington Post writes about one more instance where women’s health and children’s health were a lower priority than the interests of a powerful group.  In this case, it was breastfeeding vs. the formula industry. Marc Kaufman and Christopher Lee write: In an attempt to raise the nation’s historically low rate […]

July 30, 2007 The Pump Handle 1Comment

By Liz Borkowski After former U.S. Surgeon General Richard Carmona testified that White House officials tried to weaken or suppress important health reports for political purposes, Washington Post reporters Christopher Lee and Marc Kaufman followed up on the case of a 2006 surgeon general’s report on global health (draft here) whose publication was blocked. Carmona’s […]

July 18, 2007 The Pump Handle

Yesterday the Libyan Supreme Council commuted the death sentences of five Bulgarian nurses and a Palestinian-Bulgarian doctor to life in prison. The Tripoli 6 became a cause célèbre in the scientific and diplomatic communities when Libyan courts, after holding them in prison for eight years, refused to hear solid scientific evidence exonerating them from a […]