• Improving the Health of All Texans

    • Tobacco Dangers: 50 Years of Progress Threatened

      Fifty years of health warnings, smoking restrictions, and deaths from cancer paved the way for the arrival of Acting Surgeon General Boris Lushniak, MD, at the White House in January, where he affirmed the burning need to put an end to tobacco use in the United States.
  • Standing up for Public Health

    • EpiPens at Schools; Making Your Doctor’s Office a “Medical Home”
      Doctors want to arm schools with a small device that could save students’ lives, and your doctor’s office might undergo an internal change aimed at giving you even better care. These stories highlight this month’s Texas Medical Association’s (TMA’s) Texas Medicine magazine. Texas Medicine is TMA’s official publication. Here’s a more detailed summary of these articles:
    • Infection Control in the Outpatient Setting
      Hot Topics Bibliography: Infection Control in the Outpatient Setting
    • TMA Ebola Virus Resource Center
      Ebola virus information for physicians and health care workers
    • Feds Enact Tougher Standards as Nurses Contract Ebola
      Last week, Thomas Eric Duncan, the first known person to develop Ebola in the United States, died at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital in Dallas.
    • A Deadly Milestone, and Court Ruling Might Revoke People’s Insurance
      The 50th anniversary of a landmark report calling tobacco a killer although millions have died since; court battles determining whether countless government-insured patients will have to give back money they received to pay for it; a new kind of company doctor; and legislative review of Texas’ health agencies highlight this month’s Texas Medical Association’s (TMA’s) Texas Medicine magazine. 
    • Attend the 2014 Texas Immunization Summit Nov. 5-7
      The 2014 Texas Immunization Summit, scheduled for Nov. 5-7 in San Antonio, gives you an opportunity to gather information and tools to champion immunization in your community.
    • Two Deaths From Enterovirus D68 Reported
      A four-year-old New Jersey boy died Sept. 25, and a 21-month-old Michigan girl died Oct. 10, making them the first two confirmed deaths from enterovirus D68 (EV-D68). The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) confirmed 594 cases of EV-D68 in 43 states, including Texas, as of Oct. 6. 
  • Addressing Pollution from Legacy Coal Power Plants in Texas

    This June 2013 report examines retrofitting Big Brown, Martin Lake, and Monticello coal-fired facilities with modern emission controls or retiring the plants and replacing them with cleaner alternative energy sources. Prepared by Daniel Cohan, PhD, assistant professor of environmental engineering at Rice University, Addressing Pollution targets these three 1970s-era legacy coal-fired power plants because they are "the leading emitters of air pollutants and greenhouse gases in Texas." And they heavily contribute to the formation of ground-level ozone and particulate matter, a mixture of substances including carbon-based particles, dust, and acid aerosols formed in the atmosphere by volatile organic compounds, sulfur dioxide, and nitrogen oxides.

    The report explores four options that "could foster the ability of electricity providers to offset any loss of generating capacity from the legacy coal-fired power plants, while enhancing air quality and minimizing costs to ratepayers."

  • Texas Public Health Stats

    • Immunizations

      There is a greater risk of outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases in communities with low immunization rates. Vaccine preventable diseases will increase if Texas cuts immunization funding.
    • Obesity

      "F as in 'Fat'" Ranks Texas the 13th most-obese state in the country. Healthy eating starts in childhood.
    • Smoking

      Tobacco use is the leading cause of preventable death in the state. More than 24,000 Texans die each year from tobacco-related illnesses. Join with TMA to make Texas smoke-free.
    • Mental Health Funding

      More than 4.3 million Texans, including 1.2 million children, live with some form of mental health disorder. Of these, 1.5 million cannot function at work, school, or in the community due to their illness.