• Infectious Diseases

    • CDC Issues Bird Flu Health Advisory

      The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a health advisory concerning identification of highly-pathogenic avian influenza A H5 viruses in U.S. birds. CDC says public health workers and clinicians need to be aware of the potential for human infection with these viruses and should follow CDC recommendations for patient investigation and testing and for infection control, including the use of personal protective equipment and antiviral treatment and prophylaxis. 
  • More on Infectious Diseases

    • DSHS Asks Doctors to Report Cronobacter sakazakii in Infants
      The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) wants physicians and laboratories to promptly report infections with Cronobacter sakazakii (formerly Enterobacter sakazakii) in infants younger than 12 months to their respective local health department or DSHS.
    • DSHS to Host Infectious Disease Response Workshops
      The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Section will host eight three-day workshops — one in each of the DSHS Health Service Regions — to share in-depth, Texas-specific infectious disease preparedness and response information. The workshops will provide current strategies, assess individual levels of preparedness and response, and identify gaps in service.
    • Help Your Patients Choose the Right Flu Vaccine
      It's Oct. 1, Influenza Awareness Day — a perfect time to talk with your patients about getting their flu vaccination this year. An annual flu shot is recommended for anyone six months of age and up.
    • Fist-Bump Your Doctor During Cold and Flu Season
      Looking for a way to greet your patients but limit the spread of cold and flu? Citing a study published in American Journal of Infection Control, TMA member Jason Marchetti, MD, has your answer!
  • Ebola

    • CDC Releases Updated Ebola Monitoring Protocol
      The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) was expected to release new guidance on monitoring travelers from Liberia to the United States for potential Ebola infection. With the World Health Organization's designation of Liberia as "Ebola free" in May, CDC has developed a "step-down" screening protocol for low-risk travelers to the United States from Liberia.
    • Ebola Resource Examines Dallas Contact Tracing, Monitoring
      It has been months since the last U.S. Ebola patient received a clean bill of health, yet public health officials continue to examine the response to the disease to plan and prepare for possible future cases. "Active Tracing and Monitoring of Contacts Associated With the First Cluster of Ebola in the United States," published in the May edition of the Annals of Internal Medicine, discusses the process of contact tracing during the U.S. Ebola investigation. The paper identifies key experiences from contact tracing implementation and monitoring that may assist ongoing Ebola preparedness efforts.
    • Battling a Destructive Virus
      Infectious disease experts and epidemiologists urge physicians to educate their patients about Ebola and to know the signs that may indicate a patient has the virus.
    • Free Ebola CME from UTHSCSA
      The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio is offering an online course titled Ebola Virus Disease: What Should You Know? Update and Demonstration of Donning and Doffing of Personal Protective Equipment. Physicians can earn free 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™ upon completion of the course.
    • State Gives “All Clear” on Dallas Ebola Cases
      The last person — a hospital worker who handled medical waste on Oct. 17 — being monitored in connection with the state's three diagnosed Ebola patients was cleared from twice-daily monitoring on Nov. 7, according to the Texas Department of State Health Services. The hospital worker had reached the 21-day mark, the longest incubation period for the disease.
  • Key Issues

    • Antibiotic Resistance
      Use of antimicrobials over the past 50 years has led microbes to evolve and become resistant to many commonly used antimicrobial drugs. Antimicrobial resistance raises the potential for spreading infectious diseases, making this a significant public health concern.
    • Food Safety
      The CDC estimates that one out of six Americans gets sick from a food-borne illness every year. Most cases go unreported, either because the victim doesn't see a doctor or there is no specific diagnosis. Food-borne infections, however, can cause serious illness and death.
  • TMA Communications and Advocacy

    • Combating Measles Resource Center
      The December 2014 "Disneyland" nationwide measles outbreak and the 2013 outbreak in North Texas -- all primarily among unimmunized persons -- bring new attention to a disease once thought to be eliminated in the United States. TMA has collected this information to help you and your patients combat this deadly disease.
    • Be on the Lookout for Cyclospora
      The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) encourages health care professionals to test for Cyclospora in patients who have diarrheal illness lasting more than a few days or diarrhea accompanied by severe anorexia or fatigue.
    • Action Special: Texas Investigating Potential Measles Exposures
      A health alert issued by the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) advises physicians to consider measles in their diagnoses. The department published the alert following notification by the Kansas Department of Health and Environment that more than 30 Texans may have been exposed to the highly contagious disease at a Wichita, Kan., softball event during the Fourth of July weekend.
    • Texas Colledge Students' First Mandatory Test: Get Meningitis Vaccine
      College students especially are vulnerable to the disease because new students are coming together from different places and share close living quarters. The only other patient group at a higher risk of contracting meningococcal disease is preschool children, doctors note.
    • Broader Raw Milk Sales a Sour Idea, Physicians Say
      Is raw milk bad milk? Drinking raw, unpasteurized milk can make you sick, or even kill you, physicians say.
    • 2013 TMA Physician Letters and Testimonies
      Read recent letters and testimonies presented by TMA physician leaders at the state capitol.