Are We Closer to a New Flu Shot?

by Erica Mitchell | September 29 2019

This past week, the Trump administration signed an executive order to investigate improvements to flu vaccine production and ways to encourage more Americans to get vaccinated. Called "Modernizing Influenza Vaccines in the United States to Promote National Security and Public Health," this executive order places the responsibility on the US Department of Health and Human Services to come up with a plan and budget within the next 120 days to meet these goals. In today's post, we'll explore the two issue involved: New flu shot technologies and the need to get more Americans vaccinated.

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Anatomy of an Overbed Table

by Erica Mitchell | September 23 2019

Overbed tables are essential in patient rooms. They serve as a surface for food trays, and can hold personal items such as phones, computers, or books. Even healthcare workers uses overbed tables for holding medical devices or supplies. All this usage means one thing: Overbed tables are one of the most-touched and most-contaminated surfaces in a patient room.

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We Only Have One Chance: One Mom's Battle Against Cancer and Infection (Part 2)

by Erica Mitchell | September 18 2019

Our earlier post gave us a glimpse into the life of a mom responding to the shocking diagnosis of cancer in her three-year-old son, Jack. This concluding segment will explore the result of her unrelenting fight against infection as she did everything possible to help her son survive, and the lasting impact that experience has had on her life the life of her son.

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VAPING & VAP: Lungs Under Attack

by Erica Mitchell | September 13 2019

News stories about the dangerous - and sometimes lethal - effects of vaping have been making headlines. This increasingly popular method of nicotine delivery, electronic cigarettes, has resulted in some perplexing cases of lung disease. In today's post, we'll explore what is known about this vaping-associated pneumonia by comparing it to a common HAI, ventilator-associated pneumonia, or VAP.

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One Mom's Battle Against Cancer and Infection (Part 1)

by Erica Mitchell | September 11 2019

It was a fall evening just after Thanksgiving when Page snuggled with her son at bedtime. He had just celebrated his 3rd birthday and was feeling a little under the weather, so she was rubbing his belly while he rested, going through the list of what it could be - chicken pox? Too much dinner? A stomach bug? All those thoughts came to a screeching halt when she felt a soft lump just over her son's belly button. With a sudden mother's intuition that would prove to move mountains in the years to come, Page bundled up her child and with shaking hands, immediately drove him to the emergency department at the nearby children's hospital. Only a few hours later, the world-changing diagnosis was given: Neuroblastoma. Stage IV. Cancer.
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Special Populations Series: Pediatric Cancer

by Erica Mitchell | September 4 2019

With a few words, a family's life is forever changed: "It's cancer." For any patient, these words bring anxiety and fear. When that patient is a child, however, no words can express the emotions that send shock waves through a family, friends, and community. Today's post begins a three-part story of one such young patient, a little boy named Jack. (Best of all, Jack's story has a happy ending.) During Childhood Cancer Awareness Month join us as we see the challenges of pediatric cancer treatment and infection control through the eyes of a boy and his mother.

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