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Saturday, February 22, 2014

2/22/14 Health News: Weird Trick to Curb Antibiotic Overuse - DOWNER CALF- Preventing Infectious Disease Threats- Hospitals Saved 136,000 Lives, $11.65 Billion,

One Weird Trick to Curb Antibiotic Overuse
Antibiotic overprescription is a major problem. While there have been several campaigns to curb it, few have made a big impact—until now. In a new study, researchers Jason Doctor, an associate professor at the the University of Southern California's Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics and Daniella Meeker, an information scientist at the research think tank RAND Corporation, showed that they were able to reduce unnecessary antibiotic prescriptions among study participants by 20 percent simply by posting signs.  Continue Reading

What is a downer calf? I will try and answer that question, and, in so doing, hope to better inform the 72 members of Congress who signed a letter to the Secretary of the U.S. Department of Agriculture urging him to prohibit the “slaughtering of non-ambulatory disabled calves (known as ‘downers’).” I will explain in...Continue Reading

U.S. Launches New Global Initiative to Prevent Infectious Disease Threats
Faced with what they describe as a perfect storm of converging threats from infectious-disease epidemics, U.S. officials launched a global effort with more than two dozen countries and international organizations to prevent deadly outbreaks from spreading. The goal is to prevent, detect and respond to infectious-disease threats where they start. That’s more effective and less costly than treating sick people after diseases spread. The new initiative is intended to bolster security at infectious-disease laboratories, strengthen immunization programs and set up emergency-response centers that can react to outbreaks within two hours. Despite advances in medicine and technology, Americans are at greater risk than ever from new infectious diseases, drug-resistant infections and potential bioterrorism organisms. .Continue Reading

Premier Collaborative Saved 136,000 Lives, $11.65 Billion,

More than 350 hospitals across the U.S. collectively saved $11.65 billion and prevented 136,375 deaths during the past five years by adhering to evidence-based standards for best practices, according to a report released by Premier. The hospitals were all a part of the company's QUEST collaborative, a national quality improvement program started in 2008, which requires members to use proven methods of quality, safety and efficiency based on standards set by observing the program's top performing healthcare providers. As hospitals across the nation attempt to improve ratings and have better outcomes, several studies are finding that getting clinicians to follow through on adopted evidence-based standards is a significant challenge. Continue Reading

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