News & Perspective

Oct 30, 2008

Oct 30, 2008

Benefits of flu vaccination hotly debated

– WASHINGTON (CIDRAP News) – The benefits conferred by influenza vaccination—to recipients and to their close contacts—were hotly disputed at an international medical meeting this week.

Oct 29, 2008

Oct 29, 2008

US urged to launch major campaign against emerging diseases

See related article posted today: "Experts stress vigilance over emerging, unpredictable diseases"

(CIDRAP News) – Saying Americans are threatened by a rising tide of emerging and resurging infectious diseases, the nonprofit group Trust for America's Health (TFAH) today issued a report calling on the US government to launch a comprehensive campaign to battle the microbes at home and abroad.

Oct 28, 2008

Oct 28, 2008

Fifth case confirmed in South African viral outbreak

(CIDRAP News) – A fifth case has been confirmed in the recent outbreak of febrile illnesses caused by a mysterious virus in South Africa, and preliminary tests have supported earlier suspicions that it is new member of the arenavirus family, South African health officials announced recently.

Oct 27, 2008

Oct 27, 2008

Drug-resistant flu viruses cause growing concern

– WASHINGTON, DC (CIDRAP News) – Health officials worldwide are becoming increasingly concerned about influenza viruses' resistance to antiviral drugs, which can shut down a flu infection or mitigate symptoms. Flu antivirals are vital for reducing severe illness and death in average flu seasons and could be essential bulwarks against an influenza pandemic if one began.

Oct 23, 2008

Oct 23, 2008

ACIP opens door to anthrax shots for first responders

(CIDRAP News) – The federal Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) has opened the door to voluntary anthrax vaccination for first responders, revising an 8-year-old recommendation against that step.

Oct 22, 2008

Oct 22, 2008

GAO says tighter security needed at two BSL-4 labs

(CIDRAP News) – Two of the nation's five biosafety level 4 (BSL-4) labs lack outer-ring security controls to protect against a terrorist attack or theft of some of the world's most dangerous pathogens, such as the Ebola and smallpox viruses, according to a new report from the Governmental Accountability Office (GAO).

Oct 17, 2008

Oct 17, 2008

US antiterrorism rules restrict vaccine exports

(CIDRAP News) – A recent Associated Press (AP) report revealed that, in the name of preventing biological attacks, the United States has rules barring the exportation of vaccines for avian influenza, smallpox, yellow fever, and many other pathogens to five countries classified as sponsors of terrorism.

Oct 16, 2008

Oct 16, 2008

Polio vaccination may continue after wild virus fades

(CIDRAP News) – Teams of researchers from several countries today report positive results in the long battle to eradicate polio. At the same time, they acknowledge that the international campaign faces an extraordinary challenge of both biology and economics: While circulation of wild poliovirus may cease, polio vaccination may need to continue for an indefinite period of time.

Oct 15, 2008

Oct 15, 2008

Rand report proposes standards for mass antibiotic dispensing

(CIDRAP News) – The Rand Corp., responding to a request from the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), recently unveiled a set of proposed standards for cities to use as they establish plans to distribute antibiotics to the public in the event of a bioterrorist attack or other public health emergency.

Oct 14, 2008

Oct 14, 2008

Seven states report sporadic flu cases

(CIDRAP News) – In a sign that influenza season is approaching, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently reported that a handful of states have seen sporadic flu cases and that the earliest signs suggest that this year's vaccine is a good match for circulating strains.

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