"The symptoms of many viral illnesses, they always begin the same," said Dr. Howard Zucker, at a press conference convened today by Governor Andrew Cuomo to discuss how the state was dealing with Ebola.
Ebola, just like the flu, starts with a fever, sore throat, headache, and muscle weakness. If a patient came in to his office with those starting symptoms, Zucker said, "I would ask, 'Have you had the flu shot?' and if you say yes, I'd say, 'OK, you probably don't have the flu.' "More »
After New York Republican gubernatorial hopeful Rob Astorino announced his plan to save us all from Ebola, we were curious whether he'd get any traction with this whole banning-all-travel-from-West Africa thing. Turns out the response to his words might be...biological.
WFAA via Twitter. h/t Dallas Observer A man experiencing Ebola-like symptoms was taken from a clinic in Frisco, Texas, to a Dallas hospital.
Astorino spoke only a day before the death of Thomas Edward Duncan, an announcement from the Centers for Disease Control regarding increased screening at airports, and news that a man in Frisco, Texas, showing Ebola-like symptoms, had been taken to the hospital out of "an abundance of caution."
Some studies suggest contagious diseases can actually have direct effects on what societies consider to be moral, and on how people feel about outsiders. It's something University of British Columbia professor Mark Schaller calls "the behavioral immune system."More »
"God help us if Ebola comes into New York because we were afraid to offend someone," he intoned, with the United Nations building providing a backdrop of the requisite gravitas. "I therefore call on the FAA today to halt air travel to New York area airports [from affected West African nations] until proper protocols are in place."
Astorino's announcement came only a day before the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that it will be increasing screening procedures for the virus at major U.S. airports, including JFK and Newark International.
The candidate's remarks didn't go over very well with his opponent, Governor Andrew Cuomo.More »
Along with the latex deliveries (which flout Fordham's rules against giving out contraception on campus), SAGES has anonymously live-tweeted meetings about sexual health on campus and set up a petition demanding co-ed dorms, free access to birth control, and a free-speech zone where student groups can share materials not preapproved by the administration.
The school responded, tweeting that it doesn't prohibit birth control -- just its distribution on campus. "Secret protests are fun, but at college, we debate ideas rather than litter about them," retorted the school's Rose Hill Student Life office, which invited SAGES to come forward for a discussion. "Instead of anonymity...try some Fordham values this Homecoming: open debate and respect for beliefs and traditions of others."
SAGES has yet to RSVP.
But in the midst of the "fun" back-and-forth lurks a more startling allegation. Two women have come forward saying that the school's medical center has violated its own policies regarding providing hormonal birth control for physical health reasons.More »
City Council speaker Melissa Mark-Viverito used Twitter Sunday night to announce that she's been diagnosed with high-risk human papillomavirus, or HPV, a common sexually transmitted infection. The speaker added that she needs to undergo a biopsy to test for cervical cancer. The announcement immediately generated a wave of headlines, with the Daily News describing it as a "health bombshell".
Image via Twitter
In July 2010, a man entered the Guthrie Clinic in Coning, New York to receive treatment for a sexually transmitted disease. As it happened, a nurse at the clinic knew the man, identified only as "John Doe" in court documents. Doe was the boyfriend of the nurse's sister-in-law.
Wikimedia Commons New York State Court of Appeals in Albany.
So the nurse texted her sister-in-law to inform her that Doe had an STD. The sister-in-law then forwarded the message to Doe, who filed a complaint with the clinic. Guthrie acknowledged the misconduct and fired the nurse. Doe sued the Guthrie Clinic, charging that the institution is liable for the disclosure of his personal information.
Last week, however, the state's highest court ruled against Doe, clearing Guthrie of legal liability. The clinic should not be held responsible for a worker's action that "is not within the scope of employment," the New York State Court of Appeals stated in a majority decision.More »
In July, as we detailed in last week's cover story, a Queens jury ordered Dr. Arlene Mercado to pay $8 million in damages for the death of her patient, six-year-old Claudialee Gomez-Nicanor. Mercado, jurors concluded, was fully liable for the girl's death because she misdiagnosed her with type 2 diabetes when the girl actually had type 1.
The award is not final. Mercado's defense team filed a motion asking the judge to decrease the punitive portion of the payout and the judge is currently contemplating it.
It's a sizable sum--much higher than what malpractice insurance providers cover.Yet it seems small when compared to nine-figure medical malpractice awards that make headlines. In April, for instance, a New York jury doled out a $130 million award.
Why was the award in Mercado's case so much lower?
Because her patient died.More »
"I believe it won't be long before we can cure diabetes with a number of different therapies depending on the needs of the patient," Dr. Paolo Fiorina of Boston Children's Hospital said this summer. "Then, if the right screening techniques for diabetes could be developed, it would be entirely possible in many cases that we could prevent the disease from ever developing in children."
Diabetes can be fatal. The death of Queens six-year-old Claudialee Gomez-Nicanor, which we detailed in this week's cover story, illustrated how a child can go from seemingly healthy to intensive care in a matter of weeks if the condition is not properly treated.
As Fiorina declared, though, research is quickly gaining ground on the disease. His optimism is rooted in a discovery he and his colleagues published earlier this year: They pinpointed the specific mechanism that causes diabetes.
As we detailed in this week's cover story, six-year-old Claudialee Gomez-Nicanor died from complications related to her type 1 diabetes. When she arrived at the hospital after a night of nausea and fatigue, her blood sugar was five times the normal level. Her body had needed insulin to process that glucose. but she did not get insulin because her doctor, pediatric endocrinologist Arlene Mercado, appeared to have diagnosed her with type 2 diabetes, which is not as urgent and can be fixed through diet, exercise, and medication.
Ellen Weinstein A misdiagnosis led to the death of Queens six-year-old Claudialee Gomez-Nicanor.
The misdiagnosis was both tragic and confounding. Type 2 diabetes is extremely rare in kids under 10. Children's diabetes expert Craig Alter testified in court that if a six-year-old has diabetes, there's a "99.99 percent" chance it's type 1. The jury found Mercado 100 percent liable for Claudialee's death.
The case speaks to a greater trend. With all the national focus on health care policy and making sure everyone has access to treatment, it's easy to forget about one of the industry's most fundamental yet complicated issues: accurate diagnosis.More »