Zika virus becoming international emergency : WHO

World Health Organisation has declared an international emergency over the explosive spread of the mosquito-borne Zika virus, which is linked to birth defects in the Americas. The UN health agency yesterday convened an emergency meeting of independent experts in Geneva to assess the outbreak of the virus. The meeting was convened after noting a suspicious … Read more

Microcephaly birth defect rate surged after Zika outbreak in Brazil

Brazilian health ministry reported a rise in the number of newborn babies with uncommonly small heads – microcephaly, and suspect that the surge is linked to an outbreak of the mosquito-borne Zika virus. The number of babies born with suspected microcephaly since October has now reached 3893. Brazilian authorities have reported 3,893 new suspected cases … Read more

53 approved drugs that may block Ebola infection

Study identifies 53 approved drugs that may block Ebola infection — Compounds may keep virus from entering cells; may accelerate drug development – Researchers found 53 existing drugs that may keep the Ebola virus from entering human cells, a key step in the process of infection. Among the better known drug types shown to hinder infection by an Ebola virus model: several cancer drugs, antihistamines and antibiotics.

Tighter Ebola Screening for Travelers From West Africa – Obama

U.S. working on new screenings for Ebola but no travel ban — U.S. will augment Ebola screenings for airline passengers in U.S. and Africa – U.S. President Barack Obama met with members of his national security team and senior staff to receive an update on the Ebola outbreak in West Africa and the administration’s response efforts at the White House in Washington October 6, 2014.

US Travel Warning to avoid travel to West African nations

As West Africa Ebola outbreak worsens, CDC issues Level 3 Travel Warning — CDC surge scaling up response in Guinea, Sierra Leone, and Liberia – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a warning to avoid nonessential travel to the West African nations of Guinea, Liberia, and Sierra Leone. This Level 3 travel warning is a reflection of the worsening Ebola outbreak in this region.

Actual pandemic flu death toll was much higher in 2009

2009 Pandemic Flu Death Toll Much Higher Than Official Worldwide Estimates – A research team consisting of more than 60 collaborators in 26 countries has estimated the global death toll from the 2009 outbreak of the H1N1 virus to be 10 times higher than the World Health Organization’s count, which was based on laboratory-confirmed cases of this flu.

Hepatitis A illnesses associated with a frozen fruit blend

FDA Investigates Multistate Outbreak of Hepatitis A Illnesses Potentially Associated with a Frozen Fruit Blend – Townsend Farms, Inc. of Fairview, Oregon, recalled certain lots of its frozen Organic Antioxidant Blend on June 4, 2013, because it has the potential to be contaminated with Hepatitis A virus. No other Townsend Farms products, frozen or fresh, are covered by this voluntary recall or linked to the illness outbreak at this time.

Tamiflu drug resistance in H7N9 flu cases raises concern

Tamiflu Resistance Confirmed in H7N9 Flu Cases — Drug resistance in new China bird flu raises concern – Resistance easily develops when patients take antiviral drugs such as oseltamivir (tamiflu) for treating h7n9 influenza infections. Researcher’s analysis, which includes 14 patients who were hospitalized in Shanghai within 2 days of starting therapy with Tamiflu, appears in The Lancet.

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