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Preview: Seattle Post-Intelligencer: Health and Fitness Health News


UN completes first round of Syria polio vaccination campaign

Fri, 18 Aug 2017 18:36:10 UT

BEIRUT (AP) — The United Nations says the first round of a vaccination campaign following a polio outbreak in eastern Syria has been completed. Fran Equiza, the UNICEF representative to Syria, says the relief agency teamed up with the World Health Organization and local partners to vaccinate 355,000 children under 5 years of age in the country's Deir el-Zour and Raqqa provinces Polio immunization rates have plummeted through the civil war. According to UNICEF, rates have fallen from over 80 percent in 2011, to just over 40 percent now. The WHO confirmed a polio outbreak in the Deir el-Zour province in June. The province is contested between the Syrian government forces and Islamic State militants.

Amid India oxygen scandal, docs want focus on encephalitis

Fri, 18 Aug 2017 11:00:34 UT

Dozens of children died last week in a decrepit government hospital in northeastern India, prompting public outcry over whether an oxygen shortage was to blame. Answers remain unclear, but doctors who have spent decades treating sick kids in the area say the incident is a symptom of a greater problem: Chronic mismanagement, corruption and outright negligence are worsening encephalitis outbreaks that sicken thousands of children every year. Thirty-three children died Aug. 10 and 11 at the BRD Medical College in Gorakhpur, around the time there was a disruption in the oxygen supply.

Vietnam battles dengue outbreaks with 42 percent more cases

Fri, 18 Aug 2017 10:02:34 UT

HANOI, Vietnam (AP) — Vietnam has been battling raging dengue fever outbreaks with more than 10,000 new infections reported over the past week stretching its medical system. The number of admitted patients represents a 42-percent increase over the same period last year along with seven more deaths, the Ministry of Health said Friday. A total of 90,626 people have been infected, of whom 76,848 have been hospitalized and 24 have died. The ministry attributed the rise of dengue outbreaks to higher temperature, more rains and rapid urbanization that promote the breeding of virus-carrying mosquitoes. Dr.

3 charities cancel Mar-a-Lago events amid Trump backlash

Fri, 18 Aug 2017 00:01:37 UT

FORT LAUDERDALE, Fla. (AP) — President Donald Trump's comments about the white nationalist rally last weekend are hurting not just his political standing, but his pocketbook. Three charities announced Thursday that they were canceling fundraisers at Trump's Mar-a-Lago resort, a sign the president's business is starting to suffer backlash from his comments Tuesday about the violence in Charlottesville, Virginia. The Cleveland Clinic said in a statement that it decided not to hold its annual event at his Palm Beach resort after "careful consideration" of a number of issues. It didn't elaborate, but the Ohio-based hospital was already under pressure to shift venues.

FDA OKs Pfizer drug for rare, fast-killing type of leukemia

Thu, 17 Aug 2017 21:35:49 UT

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — The Food and Drug Administration has approved a new medicine for use against a rare, rapidly progressing blood cancer after other treatments have failed. The agency approved Pfizer Inc.'s Besponsa for patients with a type of advanced acute lymphoblastic leukemia. By then, life expectancy is low. "These patients have few treatments available and today's approval provides a new, targeted treatment option," Dr. Richard Pazdur, the FDA's director for cancer drugs, said in a statement. This year an estimated 5,970 Americans will be diagnosed and 1,440 will die from the cancer, according to the National Cancer Institute. The drug will cost $168,300 without insurance for the typical nine-week treatment course.

EpiPen maker finalizes settlement for government overcharges

Thu, 17 Aug 2017 20:23:58 UT

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — EpiPen maker Mylan has finalized a $465 million government agreement settling allegations it overbilled Medicaid for its emergency allergy injectors for a decade — charges brought after rival Sanofi filed a whistleblower lawsuit and tipped off the government. It's the second settlement with the Department of Justice that Mylan has made since 2009 for allegedly overcharging the government for its medicines. A prominent senator and a watchdog group both criticized the latest settlement for being far smaller than the amount Medicaid was overcharged.

The Latest: France issues list of products with tainted eggs

Thu, 17 Aug 2017 16:20:44 UT

COPENHAGEN, Denmark (AP) — The Latest on the scandal in Europe over eggs, poultry and egg products contaminated with the pesticide Fipronil (all times local): 6:15 p.m. France's government, facing pressure for more transparency amid Europe's egg scandal, has released a list of products pulled from supermarkets because they were made with pesticide-tainted eggs. The Agriculture Ministry said Thursday it has ordered 17 kinds of Dutch-made packaged waffles withdrawn from sale. They were sold under multiple brands by several supermarket chains. Consumer rights group Foodwatch says the government should have publicized the list earlier and should recall the products, which consumers may unknowingly have at home.