Hepatitis A becomes health emergency in Florida

Hepatitis A is a viral disease that used to be fairly uncommon in the United States. This year, however, cases of hepatitis A infection have escalated to a worrying degree. This month, Florida has declared hepatitis A a health emergency.       The state of Florida has now declared the hepatitis A outbreak a ‘public health emergency.’ Hepatitis A is a disease that affects the liver, and which can occur when a person drinks water or eats food that was contaminated by the fecal matter of another person infected with hepatitis A.…

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WHO raises Ebola health risk to ‘very high’ in DR Congo, not yet international emergency

Prior to the meeting, WHO raised the DRC’s Ebola health assessment risk to “very high.” Dr. Robert Steffen, the chairman of WHO’s Emergency Committee, said that 25 deaths have occurred and 45 cases have been reported, including three in health care personnel. Among the 45 cases, 14 have been confirmed, mostly in the remote Bikoro health zone, although there’s one confirmed case in Mbandaka, a city of 1.2 million. “The risk of international spread is particularly high since the city of Mbandaka is in proximity to the Congo river, which…

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Medical experts urge Canada to declare public emergency over opioid crisis

Members of the medical community and front-line soldiers in Canada’s opioid crisis are pressing the federal government to declare a national public health emergency. Dr. David Juurlink, head of pharmacology and toxicology at Toronto’s Sunnybrook Health Sciences Centre, says the opioid problem is so dire it demands an urgent response at the highest levels of government. Politicians are meeting with public health experts, doctors and family members who have lost loved ones at a two-day summit in Ottawa to hash out a solution to escalating — and deadly — rates…

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