Thursday, October 27, 2016

Global One Health Day launched by three international health groups

Cheryl Stroud, DVM, PhD
Today’s guest post is by Cheryl Stroud, DVM, PhD, executive director of the One Health Commission.

This year, individuals and groups from around the world — from academic, corporate and nonprofit to students and established professionals — have the opportunity to implement One Health projects and special events under the auspices of One Health Day. While the official date is Nov. 3, One Health Day activities can and are happening throughout the year. Over 100 events are known to be planned, with more registrations coming in daily. And many more events that have not been registered on the website are being posted on the One Health Day Facebook page.

One Health is a movement to create collaborations between human and veterinary medical health care providers, social scientists, dentists, nurses, agriculturalists and food producers, wildlife and environmental health specialists and many other related disciplines. In today’s systems, this does not happen spontaneously. It requires that we create opportunities for direct interactions and relationships to form across the many disciplines needed to address today’s critical public-global-planetary health issues.

One Health Day gives scientists and advocates a powerful voice for moving beyond current usual approaches to emerging infectious diseases, antimicrobial resistance, climate change, environmental pollution and many other problems to a holistic default way of doing business. It was officially launched March 31 by three leading international One Health groups:
One Health is increasingly accepted by numerous major international organizations such as the World Health Organization, the World Medical Association, the World Veterinary Association, the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, the World Organization for Animal Health and many others. An outstanding group of One Health textbooks and international professional One Health journals has emerged.

The incredible number of events planned for the inaugural One Health Day by scientists, health practitioners and students demonstrates a tremendous global interest, need and call for health professionals to work together across disciplines. And the world is already looking forward to One Health Day 2017. Check out the 2016 global One Health Day events descriptions and map and prepare to be amazed.

Monday, October 24, 2016

This flu vaccine season, stick with the needle for best protection

Getting vaccinated is your best bet for staying safe from the flu. But this year, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has even more specific advice: Stick with the needle when getting your flu vaccine.

Since 2003, the nasal flu spray vaccine has been an option for children and adults. It has become a popular choice for those who don’t like needles but still want to be protected.

Recent studies, however, have shown that the spray didn’t do a good enough job guarding against the flu. There were no safety concerns with the nose spray. It just didn’t protect as well during the past three flu seasons.

Everyone ages 6 months and older should get a flu shot each year. You need a shot every year because there are different types and strains of flu virus going around so the vaccine changes each year. Cases of the flu are highest between October and May but you can get the flu at any time during the year.

The flu is a virus that can make you feel tired, hot and sick to your stomach. Getting a flu shot helps keep you from getting the flu and it also helps stop the spread of the flu to others. This is important because the flu can be really dangerous, especially for very young children, seniors and those with compromised immune systems.

For the best protection, follow CDC’s advice and get your flu shot. Find out where today.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Fall is here and so is tailgating. Are you ready to grill like a pro?

Fall is one of the most exciting times of the year. School is back in session, leaves change colors and swimsuits and popsicles are traded in for sweaters and pumpkin-flavored everything.

But there’s another thing that gets some Americans jumping for joy in the fall: Football season! And with football season comes another fall favorite, tailgating.

When you’re building up that team spirit and grilling up some tasty football treats, you’ll want to make sure not to sicken your friends and family. Nothing puts a kibosh on fun like a nasty outbreak of food poisoning.

To keep your team healthy, plan ahead when tailgating and grilling in general:

  • Make sure any raw meat, or other perishable food, is stored properly and packaged securely to keep it fresh and prevent contamination. 
  • Bring enough plates and utensils. You can’t use the same ones for both raw and cooked meat.
  • Come prepared with all the supplies you need, including cleaning supplies, water and, most importantly, your trusty food thermometer.
By using your food thermometer when grilling meat, U.S. Department of Agriculture says you’ll be grilling like a “PRO.”

Here’s how, compliments of the Get Ready cheerleading squad:
  • Give me a P! Place the thermometer in the thickest part of the meat, or approach from the side if grilling thinner cuts of meat, once you think it’s fully cooked.
  • Give me an R! Read the internal temperature off the thermometer after about 15 seconds. If you’re cooking steaks, roasts or chops made from beef, pork, lamb or veal, you’ll want to cook them to 145 degrees with a three-minute rest time. Ground meats should be cooked to at least 160 degrees, and whole poultry, poultry breasts and ground poultry should be cooked to 165 degrees.
  • Give me an O! Off the grill and into your mouth. Make sure you don’t reuse the plates and utensils that came into contact with the raw meat. Also, be sure to clean your food thermometer thoroughly after use.
Now you’re tailgating like a P-R-O! Goooooooo, team!