Category Archives: Curable Diseases

CHINESE HOSPITAL INFECTS FIVE PEOPLE WITH HIV BY REUSING EQUIPMENT

Thanks;ELEANOR ROSS 

Publised; 2/9/17 AT 7:24 PM

http://europe.newsweek.com/chinese-hospital-infects-five-people-hiv-554708


World Aids Day 2016: HIV in numbers

A Chinese hospital released a statement Thursday announcing that five people had been infected with HIV after a staff member reused medical equipment that should have been thrown away.

The infection was spread after a tube was used on others that had been used to treat an HIV positive patient, the BBC reports. A statement released by the hospital (in Chinese) declared that five members of staff had been fired as a result of the infection. The incident occurred at Huangzhou’s Zhejiang Provincial Hospital of Chinese Medicine.
“One abandoned tube during operating procedures was reused in another operation which caused cross-contamination, resulting in the treatment of HIV infection. This resulted in five cases being diagnosed,” the statement said, acknowledging it as a case of “major medical malpractice.”
The statement doesn’t mention whether anyone else has been affected, or what patients were being treated for, but it does mention that the infected patients will receive compensation.
China suffered an AIDS epidemic in 2001 after hospitals conducted faulty blood transfusions in Henan, central China. It’s estimated that 30,000-40,000 people were infected, with many people suffering after receiving blood given by illegal donors and then pooled together. The plasma was removed, and then the blood was reinjected into people so they could keep donating.
“A provincial-level hospital doesn’t follow protocols, who can we trust as average citizens?!”, wrote one person on Weibo, China’s version of Twitter, according to the BBC.

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How ‘guerilla’ start-ups can make the world a better place

Thanks;  & Word Economic Forum

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REUTERS/Thomas Peter

At the Stockholm Tech Fest this year, Swedish entrepreneur Niklas Zennström issued a rare and refreshing call to implement the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) in their next startup idea. As founder of Skype, he knows a thing or two about opportunity-spotting.

The UN goals involve complex problems, but when it comes to clever startups, a lot can happen between now and 2030. After all, some of the most exciting ideas in recent decades have come from the “guerilla” startups rather than from the “gorilla” corporations; use of the guerilla’s creativity could help to find solutions to sustainable development problems.

However, it is important to ask: Is Zennström’s call to action just fluff, or is there are a deep enough bench of entrepreneurs with robust ideas? Are there resources to support such startups through different phases of growth?

Historically, keeping the growing body of “social” entrepreneurs nourished has largely fallen to impact investors, foundations, NGOs and a few progressive government agencies. so far, the track record of guerillas has not been stellar; far too often it is the same handful of examples that make the rounds. This is a field that, while not starved for people or ideas, is in need of fresh sources of nourishment. Getting big “gorilla” corporations to work with the “guerilla” startups could provide this nourishment.

Findings from our Inclusion, Inc. research initiative suggest that large corporations are well-placed to unblock startups’ path to wider impact.

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How do we find ideas?

There is a growing pool of budding social entrepreneurs; the Skoll World Forumevent alone offers an encouraging and uplifting glimpse of the many guerillas in our midst. We are experiencing a surge in interest and ideas on university campuses. At UC Berkeley, the Blum Center has highlighted examples of businesses and people already helping to fulfil the goals.

Closer to home, The Fletcher School’s collaboration with the One Acre Fund’s D-Prize draws numerous contestants with ideas for social enterprises that take on “poverty solutions”; in recent years, we have funded a startup that used bus networks to distribute solar lamps to far-flung communities in Burkina Faso; a venture finding sponsors for girls’ high school education; and a ground transportation brokerage to serve as “the connective tissue” between smallholder farmers and transporters.

A second piece of good news is that capital is ready to be mobilised. A 2014 study by J.P. Morgan and the Global Impact Investing Network (GIIN) identified $46bn in impact investments under management, with annual funding commitments estimated to increase by 19% in 2014. Sir Ronald Cohen, chair of the Global Social Impact Investment Taskforce, believes the impact investing market can grow to match the “$3tn of venture capital and private equity.”

According to Judith Rodin and Margot Brandenburg of the Rockefeller Foundation: “Aspirational estimates suggest that impact investments could one day represent 1% of professionally managed global assets, channeling up to hundreds of billions of dollars towards solutions that can address some of our biggest problems, from poor health to climate change.”

What are the bottlenecks?

So, why does all this good news not translate into more meaningful outcomes? Two bottlenecks are worth highlighting. The first is what a Monitor and Acumen study calls the “pioneer gap”. Their 2012 study, From Blueprint to Scale, observes that pioneer firms are starved of capital and support at very early stages in their development.

The second choke point occurs in the phase of actually getting to scale. A second report, Beyond the Pioneer, identifies a chain of barriers to scale, ranging from those within the firm and the industry to those in the domain of public goods and the government.

These bottlenecks represent different forms of market failures. An approach to the first of them involves “de-risking” early stage social ventures. However, a key source of risk is the chain of barriers to scale in later stages. If we can make meaningful advances on lowering the barriers, it helps in de-risking and also supports early-stage startup development.

Given the breadth of the barriers to scale, impact investors, NGOs and foundations would find it challenging to facilitate end-to-end solutions. Apart from funding and convening, such organisations have few other levers. Large corporations, on the other hand, can tackle business model and managerial issues within the firm and help boost negotiating power within the value chain or the public sector.

The biggest questions, of course, have to do with whether the gorilla corporations can ever be organisationally and culturally compatible with the startups. Given the potential for value creation these gaps are worth taking on.

The Monitor and Acumen study lists potential barriers: “firm level” barriers, which include weak business models, propositions to customers/producers, leadership and managerial and technical talent and a lack of capital.

Eye Mitra, launched in 2013, had trained over 1,000 young entrepreneurs and reached 150,000 people by the end of 2015. The business helps individuals to set up eye care provider businesses in rural communities using low-cost products.

According to a study by Dalberg Global Development Advisors [pdf], the programme added $4m a year in impact across the six districts surveyed; with Essilor’s scaling resources, Eye Mitra could represent the potential to unlock economic impact of $487m a year across India.

“Value chain barriers”

There are also value chain barriers which include lack of suitable labour inputs and financing for bottom-of-the-pyramid (BoP) producers and customers, weak sourcing channels and weak distribution channels involving BoP producers and customers, and weak linkages and support service providers.

Corporations with experience have become adept at finding creative ways around barriers in the value chain. Consider Unilever’s Project Shakti, which enables rural women to become entrepreneurs by distributing goods to hard-to-access rural communities.

Over 70,000 Shakti Entrepreneurs distribute Unilever’s products in more than 165,000 villages, reaching over 4m rural households. At the other end of the value chain, Coca-Cola’s Source Africa initiative facilitates sustainable and financially viable supply chains for key Coca-Cola agricultural ingredients, e.g. mango production in Kenya and Malawi and citrus and pineapple production in Nigeria.

In another sector, when Saint-Gobain builds a plant in a new country, it trains the local workforce in collaboration with YouthBuild. The latter trains disadvantaged youths in professional skills, while Saint-Gobain adds training in construction science.

“Public goods barriers”

Then, there are the public goods barriers: Lack of hard infrastructure; lack of awareness of market-based solutions; lack of information, industry knowhow and standards.

Olam offers a good illustration of a company’s deep involvement in a nation’s hard infrastructure. Olam jointly owns Owendo, a port in Gabon and is a key partner in the country’s special economic zone. On the “soft” public goods front, Janssen, a unit of J&J, works with multiple stakeholders to increase access to medicines and has formed the Janssen Neglected Disease Task Force to advocate for legislation to support new research into treatments for neglected diseases. It also coordinates a consortium to support HIV patients and their caretakers in managing the disease.

Fourth and finally, there are the government barriers: inhibitory laws, regulations and procedures; inhibitory taxes and subsidies; adverse interventions by politicians or officials.

MasterCard and its growing collaboration with the Association for Financial Inclusion to educate public officials about issues relevant to financial inclusion. This includes technical capacity building, developing national-level public-private engagement strategies, research and best practices to inform policymaking and exposing officials to innovative products, business models and approaches.

Combining global reach with entrepreneurial creativity

Perhaps the best mechanism for bringing gorilla and guerilla together is through a corporate venture or impact investing fund. Consider Unilever Ventures as an example. It has invested in a range of enterprises, including ones that focus on water management as part of its “sustainable living” portfolio, e.g. Recyclebank, a social platform that creates incentives for people to take environmentally responsible actions, WaterSmart, that develops tools for water utilities to help customers save water and money or Aquasana, Voltea and Rayne Water that develop water purification, desalination and filtration technologies.

Gorillas have the global reach and scale but they need the proximity to the problem, local knowledge and the entrepreneurial creativity of the guerillas. Zennström’s call-to-action requires guerillas and gorillas to dance. It is, no doubt, an awkward coupling; but it can – and must – happen for guerilla entrepreneurs to have gorilla impact on the world’s hardest problems.

Doctors Agree—Stay Away From These Popular Health Supplements

Thanks; Kelsey Clark 


PHOTO: Original Illustration by Stephanie DeAngelis

September 12, 2016 NEWS
The supplements we often turn to as beauty or dietary aids may be doing more harm than good, according to new findings from Consumer Reports. Despite populating the shelves at pharmacies and health-food stores across the country, these over-the-counter aids can be contaminated with “dangerous bacteria” and often falsely advertise in terms of their benefits. All signs point to a lack of formalized government regulation surrounding these supplements, which can inadvertently lead to organ damage, cardiac arrest, or even cancer. These are the top five supplement ingredients to stay away from, as reported by Health:
Caffeine powder: Used for weight loss, increased energy, and athletic performance.

Green tea extract powder: Used for weight loss.

Kava: Used for anxiety and insomnia.

Aconite: Used for inflammation, joint pain, and gout.

Chaparral: Used for weight loss, inflammation, colds, rashes, and infections.

“These products don’t always contain what they claim to,” explains Ellen Kunes, the health content team leader at Consumer Reports. “That could mean you’re just wasting your money on something harmless—but the reality is, a lot of it is not harmless. … Many times, the FDA only gets involved after they get a report that there’s a problem.”

Kunes contends that eating a balanced diet of fruits and vegetables, exercising on a regular basis, getting the recommended six to eight hours of sleep every night, and monitoring your stress levels are more than enough to make you feel happy and healthy. “We recommend getting your health from food and healthy habits, rather than popping a pill.”

Check out the full list of supplements to avoid over at Health.com, and try monitoring your health using the C25K app.

Engines of the Future: How Tiny Bacteria Could Power Your Smartphone

A team of scientists has discovered that bacteria could power micromachines such as smartphones by harnessing energy from its movement. (Photo : Flickr/Creative Commons/NIAID)

Thanks;Monica Antonio 

Jul 12, 2016 07:15 AM EDT

Can you imagine your phone being solely powered by microscopic bacteria?A team of scientists from Oxford University has devised a way to harness energy from the natural movement of bacteria, which, they say, could power man-made micromachines.

According to the study published in the journal Science, these bacteria powerplants have a big potential to power various micromachines.

To test their theory, the team created computer simulations that showed how the movement of dense active matter, like swarms of bacteria, could be arranged in a cylindrical form to produce energy. The researchers noted that it is important that these bacteria are dense enough in order for them to be organised for power extraction, Science Daily reports.

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Dr. Tyler Shendruk, co-author of the study, said harvesting power from biological systems has a lot of great potential. It does not need any pre-designing in order to function, as the swarm of bacteria could assemble itself into a form of a windfarm without any human help.

The swarm of bacteria not only self-assemble, but can also spin in the opposite direction, just like what a windfarm does.

“When we did the simulation with a single rotor in the bacterial turbulence, it just got kicked around randomly. But when we put an array of rotors in the living fluid, they suddenly formed a regular pattern, with neighbouring rotors spinning in opposite directions,” Shendruk said.

TechRadar notes that even though the amount of power produced by bacteria is limited, it still opens the doors for more study of its use in sensors and microscopic robots.

Also, the new discovery is a costless and effortless way to harness energy–there’s no need for mechanical work as the bacteria reassemble themselves to continually generate power.

“Nature is brilliant at creating tiny engines, and there is enormous potential if we can understand how to exploit similar designs,” said Julia Yeomans, senior author of the study.

http://youtu.be/sY4JQBMZ6gQ

Thailand hospitality sector has best year for two decades | Bangkok is Asia’s most popular destination‏

THANKS;Bangkok Business Briefing/Centaur Management Co., Ltd. (Head Office)/Nicola Jones-Crossley
THAILAND HOSPITALITY INDUSTRY HAS BEST YEAR IN TWO DECADES
Thailand’s hospitality industry reached new highs in 2015, enjoying its best year in over two decades, according to research revealed exclusively by leading research institute STR Global.
Thailand closed the year with an overall occupancy of 73.4%, an increase of 13.6% over 2014, as arrivals soared to near the 30 million mark, driven by the demand from the mainland China market. December was a particularly strong month as occupancy levels reached 77.4%, the highest levels since 1995.
Organised by C9 Hotelworks, in cooperation with Thailand’s American Chamber of Commerce (AMCHAM) and supported by the InterContinental Hotel Group, Thailand Tourism Forum, now in its fifth year, has emerged as an important platform for tourism news and discussion, attracting over 500 registered delegates this year.

Key announcements included global hotel chain InterContinental Hotel Group unveiling expansion plans of its Hotel Indigo brand in Phuket, following its Bangkok launch last year, and Southeast Asia.

“We are delighted to be expanding our boutique hotel brand, Hotel Indigo, after its successful debut in Bangkok with Hotel Indigo Bangkok Wireless Road in 2015. In Thailand, we are slated to open the 180-room Hotel Indigo Phuket Patong in 2018 with our partners Kebsup Group Company Limited,” said Clarence Tan, Senior Vice President, Development, IHG Asia, Middle East & Africa.

The hotel investment community was out in force, led by keynote speaker Kenneth Gaw, President and Managing Principal of Gaw Capital Partners, whose company handles over USD10 billion in hospitality and real estate AUM (Assets Under Management) across the world.

“As a destination for hotel investment, Thailand remains one of our preferred choices because it is one of the most attractive travel destinations in the region,” Gaw said.

“Operating costs are relatively low and there is an abundance of opportunities. Thailand will remain the preferred travel destination for ASEAN and all Asian markets for years and we wish to continue to grow and be part of that. But there is the opportunity for even higher potential if it can achieve long-term political stability and relax foreign ownership restrictions.”

Thailand’s unique position in ASEAN, its upcoming 30 million annual arrivals milestone, the China market and its economic woes and what is termed the “new normal” – a period of almost continual disruption and challenge in the destination – were all addressed – along with the future of the hospitality industry in Thailand.
… AND BANGKOK IS THE REGION’S MOST POPULAR CITY

Bangkok has increased its lead over the pack as the region’s most popular destination, with international overnight visitors breaking the 20 million mark for the first time, according to the results of the inaugural MasterCard Asia Pacific Destinations Index released. Second place was a close fight between Singapore and Tokyo.

The inaugural index provides a ranking of 167 destinations across Asia Pacific. Thailand dominated the top ten destinations, taking three of the top ten rankings, with Phuket securing fifth place (9.3 million) and the coastal city of Pattaya coming in at eighth place (8.1 million).

Half of the top 10 destinations saw 10 percent growth or more in international overnight visitor numbers between 2014 and 2015 – Osaka (54.0 percent), Tokyo (53.2 percent), Bangkok (28.6 percent), Phuket (15.5 percent) and Pattaya (10.0 percent).
The top 20 destinations of Asia Pacific represent around half of all international overnight arrivals to the 167 Asia Pacific destinations covered by the Index.
The top ten Asia Pacific destinations ranked by international overnight visitor numbers:
1.       Bangkok 21.9 million
2.       Singapore 11.8 million
3.       Tokyo  11.8 million
4.       Kuala Lumpur 11.3 million
5.       Phuket 9.3 million
6.       Seoul 9.2 million
7.       Hong Kong 8.3 million
8.       Pattaya 8.1 million
9.       Bali 7.2 million
10.     Osaka 6.5 million
Bangkok also ranked number one in total expenditure at US$15.2 billion, with Seoul (US$14.4 billion) coming in second place, followed by Singapore (US$14.1 billion), Tokyo (US$11.9 billion) and Kuala Lumpur (US$10.5 billion).Asia Pacific’s tourism industry is the largest in the world by total contribution to GDP, having overtaken Europe in 2014. Tourism contributed US$2.27 trillion to Asia Pacific economies and 153.7 million jobs in 2015
Matthew Driver, Group Executive, Global Products & Solutions, Asia Pacific, MasterCard, commented, “The tourism industry in Asia Pacific is continuing to show robust growth with an increasing number of destinations receiving well over five million visitors a year, driven by increased consumer wealth, particularly from China. Our Asia Pacific Destinations Index (APDI) 2015 reveals the continued resilience of the Thailand market for tourism led by a resurgent Bangkok, as well as the return to popularity of Japan for visitors as demonstrated by the more than 50 percent growth year on year in its top four destinations.”
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IMPACT SPENDS 500M BAHT ON EXPANSION

IMPACT Exhibition and Convention Center has set aside a budget of 500 million baht to build a Sky Bridge connecting IMPACT Challenger 1 and the outdoor area at the side of IMPACT Arena and a 5-storey retail building with approximately 8,000 square meters of floor space that will feature retail stores, restaurants, food court, and outlet stores. The company has come up with this investment in response to exhibitors and organizers needs of expanding exhibition space to support the growing popularity of their events.

“Although IMPACT Challenger is the world’s largest column free hall with a combined space of 60,000 square meters and has always been chosen as a preferred venue for large-scale trade fairs and exhibitions at both national and international levels, some events need more space to support an increase in exhibitors, visitors and sales volume as they have become more successful,” said Paul Kanjanapas, Managing Director of IMPACT Exhibition Management.

For example, ThaiFEX and Bangkok Gems & Jewelry Fair have expanded their floor space to 70,000 square meters and 80,000 square meters respectively by including IMPACT Forum. Meanwhile, OTOP City has spread over IMPACT Exhibition Hall 1-4. And more recently, the Automotive Aftermarket International Trade Fair (AAITF), a part of Thailand International Motor Expo which was held at IMPACT Challenger, took place at IMPACT Forum.

Construction of the Sky Bridge is expected to be fully completed during the next ThaiFEX in May 2016. Meanwhile, the 5-storey retail building is scheduled to open in late 2016.

 

AIS, TRUE IN NATIONAL 4G WAR

 

AIS and True Move both announced intentions to deploy nationwide LTE-Advanced (LTE-A) service over recently bought 4G spectrum.

AIS says it has already deployed in 42 provinces and is investing THB34 billionto take the service nationwide (72 provinces) by March, the Bangkok Post reported. It says it will deploy 7,000 new base stations in the next two months alone using 1.8GHz spectrum.

True plans to invest THB56 billion on 13,500 base stations in n the 1.8GHz band and up to 4,000 base stations on the 900MHz frequency.

AIS will spend THB20 billion to expand its 3G network on the 2.1GHz band and increase its 3G base station total to 27,000. AIS has 38 million mobile connections, giving it a 46 per cent market share.

But while Bangkok hotels might be booming, exports fell more than expected last month.

Exports account for over half the GDP but fell 8.73% in December from a year earlier with the export value of US$17.1 billion, the Commerce Ministry said. The biggest fall was the China market, down 9.5%,

The fall exceeded analyst expectations.

The Bangkok Post said the fall was the highest since the 2011 floods.

THAILAND’S BIGGEST DATA CENTRE BEGINS CONSTRUCTION

Construction has begun on the new THB11 billion SUPERNAP Thailand, located in Hemmaraj Industrial Estate in Thailand’s eastern province Chonburi. SUPERNAP Thailand will be the first Uptime Institute rated Tier IV Gold data center in Asia, as well as the largest data center in the Kingdom.  The facility, which is expected to open in the first quarter of 2017, will have capacity for more than 6,000 data server racks.

“The SUPERNAP Thailand data center is a mirror of Switch SUPERNAP U.S. facilities, which are the first Tier IV Gold carrier-neutral colocation data centers on the planet. This cutting-edge data center will meet the global demand for innovation in Asia Pacific,” said CEO of SUPERNAP International Khaled Bichara. “With the emergence of the AEC and with Thailand’s focus on digital growth, this data center will set a new precedent for quality, security and innovation in Asia Pacific. We look forward to working with Thailand to attract more investment and more growth to the Thai digital economy.”

SUPERNAP International is developing the project in partnership with a group of leading Thai organizations, including CPB Equity, Kasikorn Bank, Siam Commercial Bank and True IDC. Executives from Kasikorn Bank and Siam Commercial Bank say the development of the SUPERNAP Thailand data center will enhance the banks’ use of technology to better serve their customers and provide a homegrown solution for Thai companies that seek to expand their IT capabilities.

“SUPERNAP Thailand aims to generate significant benefits for Thailand’s economy. This unique data center design will not only bring innovative technology to the Kingdom, but will also attract international investors. The facility will play an important role to support the country’s business development by showcasing Thailand as a regional hub for data centers,” said Siam Commercial Bank Senior Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer and SUPERNAP Thailand Chairman Deepak Sarup.

The new SUPERNAP Thailand data center will cover an area of nearly 75 rai or 12 hectares and will be strategically built outside the flood zone, 110-meters above sea level and only 27 kilometers away from the international submarine cable landing station, which links the facility to national and international telecoms and IT carriers.

ONYX USES REVCASTER

 

Leading international hospitality provider ONYX Hospitality Group has switched to Rainmaker’s competitive rate shopping tool, Revcaster, citing Revcaster’s functionality, the incremental revenue it generates, and the Rainmaker team’s responsiveness. Revcasterâ?Ts compatibility with numerous regional channels also factored into ONYXâ?Ts decision.
“Most critical for me in selecting a technology vendor is the partnership aspect,” said Stefan Wolf, senior vice-president, revenue and distribution strategy for ONYX. “From first contact, Rainmaker was prompt in responding to our needs and its product and services have proven very flexible. Of the presentations we received, we determined Rainmaker’s Revcaster best served our needs and, in fact, included some unexpected useful extras.”

Collecting market-specific hotel price information from hundreds of branded sites and online agencies, Revcaster provides deep-dive local knowledge and analysis, giving property managers the market intelligence and control to make real-time decisions that optimize rates. Easy-to-use downloadable reports are available anytime online in daily, weekly and other formats. Pricing data downloads into any revenue management tool or PMS.

Headquartered in Bangkok, ONYX Hospitality Group operates four diverse yet complementary brands Saffron, Amari, Shama and OZO each catering to the distinctive requirements of todayâ?Ts business and leisure travellers.

FABRINET HIRES NEW CTO
Fabrinet, a Bangkok based provider of advanced optical packaging and precision optical, electro-mechanical and electronic manufacturing services to original equipment manufacturers of complex products, said Dr Hong Q. Hou has joined the company as Executive Vice President and Chief Technical Officer. Dr. Hou brings to Fabrinet extensive technical and executive-level experience in the semiconductor and fiber-optic communication industries. In 1998 he co-founded EMCORE Corporationâ?Ts photovoltaic division and led the commercialization of high-efficiency multi-junction solar cell technology for space power applications.  Dr. Hou holds a Ph.D. in Electrical Engineering from the University of California at San Diego, and he has completed executive management courses at the Stanford Graduate School of Business. Early in his career he conducted research at the AT&T Bell Laboratories and the Sandia National Laboratories. He holds eight U.S. patents and has published more than 200 technical articles

GLOBAL MARKET ADVISORS HIRES NEW ASIA HEAD
Global Market Advisors, a leading consulting firm to the casino gaming, hotel, and airline industries, said Shaun McCamley has joined the company as head of its Asia regional office.  Due to the company’s growth, GMA recently moved to larger space in the central business district of Bangkok, Thailand, which is where Shaun will be based.  GMA continues to invest and expand in the Asian gaming and hospitality segment, providing clients with services such as financial feasibility reports, marketing strategies, internet/ social gaming, and government relations.
BANGKOK TO GAIN DIRECT FLIGHT FROM URUMQI
Bangkok has been chosen as the destination of the first direct flight linking northwestern China’s Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region to a Southeast Asian country, Urumqi Diwopu International Airport announced according to the China Daily.
The flight will be operated by China Southern Airlines between Urumqi, the capital of Xinjiang, and Bangkok, the airport said in a statement. Flights will be on Tuesday, Thursday and Saturday each week, with a stopover at Lanzhou, capital of northwestern China’s Gansu province.
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EBOLA RACISM REACHES A NEW LOW IN TEXAS

Thanks;ABBY HAGLAGE
10.15.14

“Navarro College is not accepting international students from countries with confirmed Ebola cases.”

It was with shock that 33-year-old Nigerian-American academic Idris Bello read this sentence, signaling the rejection of a friend’s Nigerian brother-in-law to the Texas community college based solely on his citizenship. “I didn’t believe it, I was so surprised. I thought: This cannot be,” Bello says.

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A lead entrepreneur in Africa, with a master’s degree in global health from Oxford University, Bello received a copy of the letter from Dr. Kamor Abidogun, a mechanical engineer and friend of his in Houston. Abidogun’s brother-in-law also decided to apply to Navarro, and used his address as the point of contact. Along with the letter he received rejecting his 29-year-old brother-in-law, Abidogun received an identical one for his 20-year-old nephew, who had also decided to apply from Nigeria.

According to the letter, the small community college 20 miles outside of Dallas has decided to stop accepting students from places with confirmed cases of Ebola. Nigeria, it seems, is an odd place to enact that policy. The country of 174 million has only registered 20 total cases of Ebola since the index patient in July, a response so strikingly effective that the CDC dispatched a team to the country to study their methods.

Already through the first 21-day incubation period following the initial cases, the country is now just five days away from being officially declared by the World Health Organization as Ebola-free. Much of the response is believed to center around what WHO has declared “world-class epidemiological detective work,” which traced all 20 cases back to one passenger at the Lagos airport—ironically, an American.

Unlike its three most affected neighboring countries, Liberia, Sierra Leone, and Guinea, citizens in Nigeria are under no threat of becoming infected with the disease within their borders, or at least no more than the threat we face in our country—and definitely not as much risk as an institution merely minutes away from its own outbreak.

The country of 174 million has only registered 20 total cases of Ebola since the index patient in July, a response so strikingly effective that the CDC dispatched a team to the country to study their methods.

Seven days after receiving the letter from Navarro, Abidogun had yet to break the “bad news” to his brother-in-law and his nephew. Neither applied to other universities. Living in Ibadan, Oyo State, neither are anywhere close to the small epidemic that swept through Nigeria in July—nor have either of them ever visited the most affected countries.

While Bello says he’s faced this kind of misinformed fear himself—he was recently stopped at a gym in Houston and asked if he’s Liberian, for example—he was most shocked to find an actual college making the same judgments. “I’ve had several people in the community act that way, but this is the first time I was going [heard] that from an institution,” says Bello. “An institution of learning, for that matter.”

He wasn’t the only one appalled by the news. When Bello posted the letter on his website, many took to Twitter to express similar feelings of disappointment. “@NavarroCollege so you won’t be accepting any Americans given Texas has confirmed cases? Seems like your enrollment will plummet. #messedup,” wrote one user. “I’m sure they didn’t mind discriminating against students from Africa beforehand, but this just gives them a new easy out,” posted another. “What a gross display of open bias. They descended too low. My brother, just choose another school,” said a third.

For Bello, spreading the message of this case isn’t about Navarro. Instead, it’s about influencing how American universities handle the epidemic in relation to their admissions moving forward. “I understand the fear about Ebola, but we’re not going to tackle epidemics by being scared or by misinformation, it’s going to be true education,” says Bello. “They are teaching students to be leaders in the future. Someone from that school needs to step forward and say, listen we made a mistake we are going to fix that mistake.”

UPDATE: Navarro College sent The Daily Beast the following statement—Our college values its diverse population of international students. This fall we have almost 100 students from Africa. Unfortunately, some students received incorrect information regarding their applications to the institution. As part of our new honor’s program, the college restructured the international department to include focused recruitment from certain countries each year. Our focus for 2014-15 is on China and Indonesia. Other countries will be identified and recruitment efforts put in place once we launch our new honors program fall 2015. We apologize for any misinformation that may have been shared with students. Additional information regarding our progress with this new initiative will be posted on our website.

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@BreakingNews tweeted: Enhanced screenings for Ebola have begun at JFK Airport in New York City

Thanks;MARC SANTORA
OCTOBER 11, 2014

As Ebola continues to ravage West Africa and fears grow that the virus will spread around the globe, enhanced screenings began on Saturday at Kennedy Airport in New York.

Travelers coming from three hard-hit African countries are being singled out, having their temperatures taken and questioned about their possible exposure to Ebola. Kennedy was the first of five American airports to introduce Ebola screening protocols, and the new measures were the latest indication of the risk that the disease presented.

Airports in Canada and Europe plan to take similar measures in coming days.

But even as nations try to reassure anxious citizens that they are doing all they can to prevent an outbreak within their borders, public health officials cautioned that the only way to truly eliminate the threat posed by the virus would be to defeat it in West Africa.

“As Ebola continues its slow-motion incursion into developed countries, right now the U.S. and Spain, there is an understandable level of fear growing among people about this terrible virus, even though the chances of seeing anything like the calamity in western Africa is profoundly remote,” said Dr. Irwin Redlener, the director of the National Center for Disaster Preparedness at Columbia University and a special adviser to Mayor Bill de Blasio of New York.

While the screenings might catch a few cases, he said, the focus needs to remain on battling the disease at its source and reacting quickly and effectively to new cases when they appear.

The difficulty and complexity of monitoring people without symptoms but thought to have been at risk of exposure to Ebola was demonstrated on Friday night when the New Jersey Health Department ordered a crew from NBC News that recently returned from Liberia to be quarantined.

The crew included the network’s chief medical correspondent, Dr. Nancy Snyderman, who lives in Princeton, N.J. Dr. Snyderman had been covering the outbreak alongside Ashoka Mukpo, a freelance cameraman who was infected with the virus. Mr. Mukpo is being treated in isolation at a hospital in Omaha.

Citing privacy concerns, the authorities declined to provide information about the other crew members who were ordered to be quarantined.

New Jersey health officials said that upon returning from Liberia, the crew members agreed to isolate themselves from the community and monitor themselves for 21 days, the longest documented period of time it has taken for someone infected with Ebola to develop symptoms. “The NBC crew was ordered to be quarantined after failing to adhere to an agreement they made with health officials,” the department said in a statement without elaborating. “The order will be enforced by the Princeton Health Department in collaboration with the Princeton Police Department. The NBC crew remains symptom-free, so there is no reason for concern of exposure to the community.”

A spokeswoman for NBC News declined to comment on the quarantine, but said she expected the crew would comply with the department’s orders.

The decision to screen travelers entering the United States was announced on Wednesday, the day the first person with a case of Ebola diagnosed in the United States died.

That patient, Thomas E. Duncan, traveled to Dallas from Liberia, and like all airline passengers leaving the West African countries at the center of the epidemic — Liberia, Guinea and Sierra Leone — he was screened for symptoms before being allowed to board his flight.

Over the last two months, 36,000 people have been screened in Africa, and only 77 were kept off flights because of illness. Many of the 77 had malaria, and none were infected with Ebola.

Mr. Duncan did not have a fever or any other symptoms associated with Ebola when he left Liberia. He did not become ill until several days after arriving in Dallas.

Under the new protocols, Customs and Border Protection officers have been directed to single out travelers arriving from the three countries based on their passport information.

If any travelers have a fever or other symptoms, or are revealed to have possible Ebola exposure, they will be evaluated by a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention quarantine officer.

“The public health officer will again take a temperature reading and make a public health assessment,” according to the guidelines released by the agency.

In New York City, officials have designated Bellevue Hospital Center as the destination for any travelers who need to be put into isolation. Since September, the city’s Health Department has had the ability to test blood for Ebola and make a diagnosis within four to six hours.

Travelers who have no fever, symptoms or known history of exposure will receive health information for self-monitoring.

Buntouradu Bamgoura, 54, from Guinea, said she was examined by a health worker after arriving at Kennedy on a flight from Paris on Saturday afternoon. “They did take my temperature,” Ms. Bamgoura said as she left the airport.

She said that the examination was not burdensome and that she was not taken to a separate room. “It took like 15 minutes,” she said, adding that she felt fine and was sent on her way with a list of symptoms to watch for.

Beginning next week, Washington Dulles, Newark Liberty, Chicago O’Hare and Atlanta international airports will employ the same screenings as those put in place at J.F.K. About 150 people enter the United States every day from Liberia, Sierra Leone and Guinea, and nearly all of them come through those five airports.

Since at least the 14th century, when the bubonic plague devastated Europe, posting medical officers at a port of entry has been one of the main tools used to try to halt the spread of disease.

An outbreak of yellow fever in 1878 led the United States Congress to grant the federal government the authority to order a quarantine to prevent its spread.

Those powers were enhanced in 1892 to try to prevent another scourge, cholera.

For several decades, starting in the 1970s, the quarantine program in the United States was neglected until another threat, severe acute respiratory syndrome, or SARS, prompted Congress and the C.D.C. to bolster the program.

Ebola cannot be transmitted through the air, but rather only through bodily fluids; people are contagious only when they are symptomatic. There is no vaccine.

Stopping an outbreak requires isolating infected patients, tracing all contacts and then isolating all of those who begin to show symptoms. That process must be repeated until there are no more new cases.

KILLER 200 Ebola Deaths Recorded in One Day

Thanks; Tom Miles

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GENEVA (Reuters) – The death toll from the worst Ebola outbreak in history has jumped by almost 200 in a single day to at least 2,296 and is already likely to be higher than that, the World Health Organization said on Tuesday.

The WHO said it had recorded 4,293 cases in five West African countries as of Sept. 6, a day after its previous update.

But it still did not have new figures for Liberia, the worst-affected country, suggesting the true toll is already much higher. The WHO has said it expects thousands of new cases in Liberia in the next three weeks.

Liberian President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf said on Tuesday she expects the Ebola crisis gripping her country to worsen in the coming weeks as health workers struggle with inadequate supplies, a lack of outside support and a population in fear.

“It remains a very grave situation,” she told an audience at Harvard University in Cambridge, Massachusetts, via Skype from Liberia’s capital Monrovia. “It is taking a long time to respond effectively …. We expect it to accelerate for at least another two or three weeks before we can look forward to a decline.”

Liberia’s defense minister told the United Nations Security Council that Ebola posed a mortal threat to the country.

“Liberia is facing a serious threat to its national existence. The deadly Ebola virus has caused a disruption of the normal functioning of our State,” said Liberian Minister of National Defense Brownie Samukai.

As well as struggling to contain the disease, the U.N. health organisation is having difficulty compiling data on the number of cases, said Sylvie Briand, the director of WHO’s department of pandemic and epidemic diseases.

“We know that the numbers are under-estimated,” Briand told a news briefing in Geneva. “We are currently working to estimate the under-estimation.

“It’s a war against this virus. It’s a very difficult war. What we try now is to win some battles at least in some places.”

The outbreak began last December and has been gathering pace for months, but about 60 percent of Liberia’s cases and deaths occurred within the last three weeks, the data showed.

Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) said that Liberia’s Montserrado County, which includes the capital, Monrovia, needs 1,000 beds to treat Ebola patients but the medical charity can only provide around 400 of those.

“We know that every day there are more people that need to be taken care of than we can include in our program. At the moment, there are insufficient beds,” MSF emergency coordinator Laurence Sailly told a news conference on Tuesday.

BIO HAZARD SUIT

Sailly said MSF was lobbying other non-governmental organizations and the United Nations to increase their response in the three countries, particularly in Liberia.

“We are working also in Guinea and Sierra Leone, so we will not be able to have more than 300 to 400 beds here in Montserrado. We are not going to go more than that, and it is not going to do anything with the scale of the epidemic here,” Sailly said.

An American doctor infected with Ebola in Sierra Leone arrived at Emory University Hospital in Atlanta, the fourth patient with the virus to be taken to the United States from West Africa for treatment, the hospital said.

The doctor, who has not been identified, wore a full-body biohazard suit as he walked gingerly into the hospital where two other Americans were successfully treated, television images showed.

Some 33 people are being kept in quarantine in a run-down house in the Senegalese capital Dakar after a student from neighboring Guinea arrived in the city two weeks ago bringing Ebola.

The student is now in isolation in a Dakar hospital, his condition improving, according to the health ministry.

In Guinea and Sierra Leone, the other two countries at the center of the outbreak, only 39 percent of cases and around 29 percent of deaths have occurred in the past three weeks, suggesting they are doing better at tackling the outbreak.

The new figures also showed two new suspected cases in Senegal in addition to one previously confirmed case there. In Nigeria, the overall number of cases fell to 21 from 22, as at least one suspected case turned out not to be Ebola.

(Additional reporting by James Harding Giahyue in Monrovia, Emma Farge and Andrew Oberstadt in Dakar, Colleen Jenkins in the United States, Stephanie Nebehay in Geneva and Michelle Nichols at the United Nations; Writing by Matthew Mpoke Bigg; Editing by Ken Wills)

Chinese experts join fight against Ebola

Thanks;Shan Juan and Li Lianxing
China Daily
Publication Date : 12-08-2014

China has sent three teams of experts to Ebola-affected West African countries to help fight the deadly virus.

It is the first time Beijing has offered overseas assistance in response to a public health emergency.

Li Qun, emergency response chief at the Chinese Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, said the move will help with China’s own Ebola response.

“Our experts’ communication with local frontline medics for Ebola control and treatment will help with our response to the virus at both clinical and future research sites,” he said, adding that China has never had an Ebola outbreak or used the virus strain for research purposes.

The teams left on Sunday night and will travel to Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

A statement issued by the National Health and Family Planning Commission on Sunday said each team comprises an epidemiologist and two specialists in disinfection and protection. Team members are from the China disease control centre and other institutions.

Sun Hui, an epidemiologist on the Guinea mission, said the tasks include information and technical support for China’s embassy and consulates there on distribution and use of relief supplies, and training local Chinese on disease response.

On Thursday, China announced humanitarian aid supplies worth 30 million yuan ($4.87 million) for Ebola-hit countries to help contain the outbreak.

The aid was expected to arrive on Monday or Tuesday, Ministry of Commerce spokesman Sun Jiwen said.

Sun Hui said each team will work for three days mainly with staff members from China’s diplomatic and consular missions.

“The mission is aimed at helping to curb the further spread of the virus in the affected countries and enhancing the protection of Chinese nationals there against the outbreak,” he said.

The disease control center has taken out insurance policies for the medical teams.

Feng Zijian, deputy director of the center, said, “Given that they are public health experts, they won’t work on the clinical side, which involves contact with the patients.”

Song Shuli, a spokeswoman for the Health and Family Planning Commission, said a training session was held on Sunday to help prepare the team.

Li Zhenjun, an expert going to Sierra Leone, the hardest-hit country, said information on biosafety, African social customs and preventive advice was given during the session.

On Friday, the World Health Organisation declared the epidemic an international health emergency, advising countries to be prepared to help with the evacuation and repatriation of nationals, including health workers who had been exposed to Ebola, which has killed nearly 1,000 people to date.

However, Feng said China has no plan at the moment to withdraw its nationals from the countries affected.

Chinese medical teams from Beijing and Heilongjiang and Hunan provinces are continuing to perform their duties in the three countries.

Wang Yaoping, director of the medical team in Sierra Leone, said, “We won’t withdraw under any circumstances and will more actively participate in combating Ebola here.”

Ebola in Spain: Spanish Priest Quarantined in Madrid with Ebola

Thanks;NEWS WEEK
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By Reuters
Filed: 8/7/14 at 10:03 AM | Updated: 8/7/14 at 10:14 AM

Filed Under: World, Ebola, Spain

MADRID (Reuters) – The first European infected by a strain of Ebola that has killed more than 932 people in West Africa, Spanish priest Miguel Pajares, was stable in a Madrid hospital on Thursday after being airlifted from Liberia, health authorities said.

Pajares, 75, was working for a non-governmental organization in Liberia and was repatriated along with his co-worker Juliana Bohi, a nun who has tested negative for the disease.

Liberia has declared a state of emergency over the crisis.

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“The patients have arrived well, though a little disoriented. They are both now in quarantine,” Madrid health official Javier Rodriguez told a news conference.

The medical plane flown out to Liberia to bring Pajares and Bohi back to Spain touched ground at a military base in Madrid at 2:00 a.m. EDT (0600 GMT) before the two were escorted by police motorbikes and cars to the Carlos III hospital.

The hospital has cleared the entire sixth floor to treat the two patients, the health union said.

Highly contagious, Ebola, which has no known cure, kills more than half of the people who contract it. Victims suffer from fever, vomiting, diarrhea and internal and external bleeding.