infection control

A statement was just put out by the Bush family spokesperson, Jim McGrath, indicating former President George H.W. Bush was hospitalized yesterday "after contracting an infection that spread to his blood." It further maintains the treatment is working and he is recovering. Having recently attended the funeral of his wife, First Lady Barbara Bush, the news is particularly upsetting. 

 

    

You may recall that they were simultaneously admitted to the hospital for respiratory conditions last year. That type of scenario is not uncommon as infections like...

Would our deceased Presidents fare better today medically than they did in their respective eras? The answer might surprise you.

Of the thirty-eight United States’ presidents who have died, collectively, they surpassed life expectancies of their respective generations. (1) Did being in such a position of prominence afford them superior care to account for this windfall?

Unpacking their individual causes of death in parallel with medical advancement is one way to provoke greater understanding.

Being alive when we didn’t know how disease spread, sadly, sealed Washington’s fate.

Washington is a perfect example of how evolution of standard of care could have saved his life. Though well-intended, his physicians could not have known then what we...

As tempting as it is, freaking out about most anything -- especially infectious diseases -- tends to render us useless and is not in our best interest. In recent years, Zika and Ebola caused a stir, even a national hysteria. Now, monkeypox has arrived on the media scene.

With a catchy name hearkening back to images of smallpox and its devastation, this animal moniker only makes it all more exotic and worrisome. But, like most infectious agents, informing yourself about its origin, mode of spread and emphasizing proper precautions for disease prevention will allow your concerns to subside.

So, before The Washington Post freaks you out with this...

Okay, most people don't want the words feces and food uttered in the same sentence. So, with just-released reports from a BBC investigation revealing that ice from three of the largest coffee companies in the United Kingdom was contaminated with fecal matter (aka stool), expect a little panic to ensue.

BBC's Watchdog group identified a diversity of bacteria concentrations in iced beverages from Starbucks, Costa Coffee and Caffe Nero. Tables, trays and high chairs were also sampled at 30 branches. The story further claims the companies are initiating their own investigations and updating ice-handling guidelines. 

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This morning I attended an event organized by the Committee to Reduce Infection Deaths (RID) at the Harvard Club of New York.

RID's Chairman and Founder as well as former Lt. Governor of New York State Betsy McCaughey, Ph.D. hosted the forum entitled, "CRE and Other High-Mortality Superbugs: How to keep care in our hospitals and nursing homes safe." CRE stands for Carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae and the emphasis of the presentations and roundtable discussion surrounded CRE and multi-drug resistant organisms (MDROs), in general.

A pool of public health leaders present reflected diverse perspectives on how the complex task of preventing healthcare-associated infections (HAI) needs to be approached. The scope of the...

Carrie Fisher’s tragic death after last week’s inflight medical emergency is sadly an all too familiar occurrence.  In fact, upticks of cardiac-related deaths on Christmas and New Year’s, in particular, are well-documented. 

This is often referred to as the “holiday effect” with the ‘why’ being unknown and most elusive, but speculated to range from any or a combination of the following:  abrupt behavioral changes albeit dietary, alcohol, exercise, work or vacation-induced, stress secondary to travel itself or familial discord or preparations, financial issues, capacity for displacement of death, delayed access to medical care due to remote locations, being en...