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British health worker being tested for Ebola after needle injury
31 Jan 2015 at 3:55am
A British military healthcare worker was flown back to England from Sierra Leone on Saturday following a needle-stick injury sustained while treating a person with Ebola, the Public Health England (PHE) service said on Saturday. The patient, who has not been named, has been taken for testing to the Royal Free Hospital in London. "They are likely to have been exposed to the Ebola virus but, at this time, have not been diagnosed with Ebola and do not have symptoms," PHE said in a statement. The Royal Free, Britain's main center for Ebola cases, also successfully treated British aid worker William Pooley who contracted the virus in West Africa last year.
GMO mosquito plan sparks outcry in Florida
31 Jan 2015 at 2:29am
A British company's plan to unleash hordes of genetically modified mosquitoes in Florida to reduce the threat of dengue fever and other diseases has sparked an outcry from fearful residents. The company, Oxitec, said it wants to try the technique there in order to reduce the non-native Aedes aegypti mosquitoes in south Florida and beyond. "They are more than just a nuisance as they can spread serious diseases such as dengue fever and chikungunya," Oxitec said on its website. The process involves inserting a gene into lab-grown, male Aedes aegypti mosquitoes.
Africa looks to extend new disaster insurance to Ebola-like epidemics
31 Jan 2015 at 1:50am
By Daniel Flynn DAKAR (Reuters) - African countries want to extend a new catastrophe insurance fund, which made its first payout of $25 million this month, to include protection against epidemics in the wake of the devastating Ebola outbreak. The African Risk Capacity (ARC) agency, a specialised body of the African Union, launched a scheme last year to insure against natural disasters. It is an effort to break Africa's reliance on foreign aid and address the impact of climate change by using innovative financial techniques. The ARC paid $25 million in its first year of operations to Senegal, Mauritania and Niger to mitigate the effects of a severe drought in the arid Sahel region south of the Sahara -- well above the $8 million in premiums paid by those countries.
Liberia delays school reopening by two weeks as Ebola cases fall
31 Jan 2015 at 1:22am
Liberia said on Friday it would delay reopening schools for two weeks in order to better prepare safety measures against the Ebola virus, which has killed more than 3,650 people in the country but now appears to be receding. A ministry statement said it wanted to "raise awareness about safety protocols, logistics and training requirements", adding: "Actual teaching will begin on Monday, Feb. 16, 2015." Some Liberian opposition parties and members of parliament had called for the reopening date to be moved to March 2, concerned that the Ebola epidemic is not yet fully under control. Liberia and its neighbours Sierra Leone and Guinea have been hardest hit in the worst outbreak of the viral haemorrhagic fever on record. The number of Ebola infections and deaths has fallen sharply in Liberia and Sierra Leone in the past few weeks, with just 20 deaths recorded in Liberia in the 21 days to Jan. 25, according to the World Health Organisation, raising hopes that the disease is gradually being brought under control.
Second patient hospitalized in California undergoes Ebola testing
31 Jan 2015 at 12:55am
Hours after a suspected Ebola patient in Sacramento, California, was found to be free of the virus, a second person hospitalized in the city was reported by public health officials on Friday to be undergoing testing for the deadly disease. The second patient was admitted to Kaiser Permanente South Sacramento Medical Center on Wednesday and, like the previous case, is considered to be at low risk of having contracted the virus, the hospital said in a statement.
Crash victim thanks donors whose blood saved his life
31 Jan 2015 at 12:40am
LOS ANGELES (AP) ? Brandon Levine exchanged handshakes and hugs with nearly two dozen of his blood brothers and sisters, people he had never met but knew had saved his life.
Drive to repeal medical device tax no slam dunk in Congress
31 Jan 2015 at 12:28am
WASHINGTON (AP) ? It flew through the Republican-run House in 2012, and a year later 79 of the Democratic-led Senate's 100 members embraced it. With Republicans now controlling both chambers of Congress, the chances for repealing the 2.3 percent tax on medical devices are better than ever.
5 Ways to Be Happier Today
30 Jan 2015 at 8:20pm
Brrr, its cold outside! These cold, grey winter days can send even the most positive people into a downward funk. Now that winter is truly upon us, what can you do to keep your spirits up? Here are five ways to be happier TODAY:1. Start a gratitude list or journal. Concentrating on what you are thankful for in your life is a sure-fire way...
Do You Have Metabol-Envy?
30 Jan 2015 at 7:21pm
Yesterday, I sat with a friend, and she said if she could have one wish it would be to be able to eat whatever she wanted and not gain weight. I clarified, "You mean instead of your family being healthy or world peace?" She said, "Well one wish or thing I could change about myself." I think I believe that last part. The truth is, I hear all...
Heat Up Your Intimacy by Cooking Together
30 Jan 2015 at 6:58pm
There is no escaping it -- Valentine's Day is just around the corner, and those chalky candy hearts staring at you in the drug store are proof of it. In this world of mass-produced love, it can often be hard to find that feeling of authentic romance. This year, instead of packing yourself into an overstuffed restaurant filled with irritated...
Second California patient tests negative for Ebola hours after first
30 Jan 2015 at 5:31pm
By Sharon Bernstein SACRAMENTO, Calif. (Reuters) - Two patients hospitalized in Sacramento, California, and tested for possible Ebola infection were found to be free of the deadly virus within hours of each other on Friday. The first patient, whose case came to light on Thursday, was transferred that day to the University of California-Davis Medical Center from a smaller hospital after having traveled recently in West Africa and exhibiting Ebola-like symptoms, officials said. Health authorities would not say whether they believed the two cases to be related or whether the second patient had traveled recently in West Africa, epicenter of the worst Ebola epidemic on record, as had the first. The back-to-back Ebola inquiries came five months after another person in Sacramento was hospitalized for testing and also found free of the disease.
More measles cases found in California
30 Jan 2015 at 5:13pm
LOS ANGELES (AP) ? More measles cases have been found in California, health officials said Friday.
More than 100 cases of measles now confirmed in U.S
30 Jan 2015 at 5:12pm
By Dan Whitcomb LOS ANGELES (Reuters) - More than 100 people in the United States have been confirmed as infected with measles including 91 in California, most of them linked to an outbreak that began at Disneyland in December, public health officials said on Friday. The California Department of Public Health said at least 58 of the cases of the highly infectious disease in the state have been epidemiologically linked to the Disneyland cluster. No deaths have been reported in connection with the outbreak, which public health officials suspect began when an infected person from outside the United States visited Disneyland in Anaheim between Dec. 15 and Dec. 20. The White House on Friday urged parents to heed the advice of public health officials and scientists in getting their children vaccinated.
Spain uses stem cell therapy to treat damaged hearts
30 Jan 2015 at 4:53pm
A Spanish hospital has successfully used stem cells culled from healthy donors to treat seven heart attack victims, in what officials said was a world first. Madrid's Gregorio Maranon hospital plans to treat 55 patients in all with the technique in a clinical trial, the regional Madrid government which runs the hospital said in a statement. "Seven patients have already been operated on and they have progressed very well despite having suffered serious damage to their heart tissue," it added. It is the first time that allogeneic cells -- stem cells that come from another person -- have been used to repair damage to a heart caused by a heart attack, the statement added.
Ohio postpones all 2015 executions as it secures new drugs
30 Jan 2015 at 4:35pm
By Kim Palmer CLEVELAND (Reuters) - Ohio will postpone all six executions scheduled for 2015 because it needs more time to prepare for a new execution procedure and to secure a new supply of execution drugs, the state's prison department said on Friday. Earlier this month, the Ohio Department of Rehabilitation and Correction halted use of the two-drug lethal injection combination of the sedative midazolam and painkiller hydromorphone after the protracted death of an inmate last year. The state prison system wants to add a drug, thiopental sodium, previously used for lethal injections from 1999 to 2011, and pentobarbital as the two drugs permitted for lethal injections in the future. Ohio and other states with the death penalty are seeking new execution drug formulations after some pharmaceutical companies stopped supplying products because they no longer wanted to be associated with capital punishment.