Infectious Diseases

West Nile Cases Rising in Texas; One Death Confirmed - 10/29/2019

State health officials have confirmed 19 cases of West Nile illness in Texas this year, including one death. Most of the confirmed cases have been identified in El Paso with 13, according to data from the Department of State Health Services. Other cases have been confirmed in Brazoria, Floyd, Hale, Harris, Nolan, and Tarrant counties.

Medical Students Win TMA Foundation Grants to Help Texans - 10/21/2019

Texans in cities across the state will benefit from nearly $27,000 in Texas Medical Association Foundation (TMAF) grant funding awarded to budding physicians for health-improvement projects.

State Health Advisory: New Syphilis Testing Requirements During Pregnancy In Effect - 10/04/2019

As of Sept. 1, Texas physicians are required to test pregnant women for syphilis three times: at the first prenatal visit, during the third trimester (no sooner than the 28th week), and at delivery. Previously, state law required testing at the first visit and during the third trimester.

Disease Reporting in Texas: What You Need to Do - 08/23/2019

You’re most likely aware that you are required to report certain health conditions, diseases, and outbreaks – known as “reportable” or “notifiable” conditions. This helps local, state, and federal health officials to track and study those conditions. But you might not be aware of all of the conditions you are required to report, or how, when, and to whom.

Measles: Updated Information and Resources Available to Fight Rising Cases - 08/16/2019

As measles cases continue to rise in Texas and across the U.S., the Texas Medical Association and Texas Hospital Association have created a document to help physicians and other health care professionals combat the highly contagious respiratory illness. The document provides the latest recommendations for diagnosing and reporting measles, immunizations, infection prevention and control, and post-exposure prophylaxis and exclusion.

Talk to Patients About: Texas School Vaccinations - 07/08/2019

All Texas public schools (and most private schools) and colleges require students to have certain shots before they can attend classes.

Talk to Patients About: Whooping Cough - 07/02/2019

But pertussis has made a resurgence. Anti-vaccine sentiment and other factors allow pertussis to spread, especially in school children. But vaccination still remains the best protection.

West Nile, Chikungunya, Dengue Reported In Texas - 06/06/2019

Summer hasn’t started yet – that happens June 21 – but several cases of vector-borne diseases have been identified in Texas. Four cases each of chikungunya and dengue have been reported in Dallas, Fort Bend, Harris, Lubbock, Tarrant, and Travis counties, the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) said this week.

2018 Be Wise – Immunize Local Impact Grant Recipients - 05/03/2019

These Be Wise — Immunize Local Impact Grants were approved in 2018

Syringe Service Programs Stop Spread of Disease - 04/03/2019

We hope you will move to quickly approve HB 1722, and we offer our assistance with your work. HIV, hepatitis B, and hepatitis C can be spread through injection drug use regardless of where you live. We must get this effort right to reduce the spread of diseases and to target more of those who use injection drugs so they can obtain the treatment and support needed to address their addiction.

Fighting Antibiotic Resistance and Infectious Disease in Long-Term Care Facilities - 03/11/2019

TMA supports House Bill 1848 with hopes that this bill can help prevent last year’s influenza season and countless infectious disease deaths from happening again by lessening the spread and severity of an outbreak.

Talk To Your Patients About: Mumps - 03/11/2019

The March issue of Texas Medicine highlights mumps, which spreads easily through sneezing and coughing, or just touching infected surfaces. A vaccine, first introduced in 1967, reduced U.S. cases by 99 percent, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Meet Texas’ Critical Public Health Needs - 02/13/2019

Investing in our people’s health through the DSHS now will avoid higher costs in the future. TMA recognizes the importance of a strong public health infrastructure and is ready to work with this committee towards continuing to improve the health of all Texans.

Talk to Patients About: Measles - 02/04/2019

Few Americans today remember when measles was deadly. But before the measles vaccine was introduced in 1963, the disease killed about 2.6 million globally each year. By 2016, vaccination programs cut that number to about 89,000.

Multiple Mumps Cases Reported in Immigrant Detention Centers Across Texas - 01/29/2019

Texas physicians should be on the lookout for mumps as health officials investigate multiple cases of the infectious disease in immigration centers throughout the state.  

Talk to Your Patients About: Rotavirus - 01/14/2019

January’s magazine spotlights rotavirus, a highly contagious viral infection that inflames the lining of the stomach and intestines, and especially affects children 2 years old and younger.

Help Fight HPV During Cervical Cancer Awareness Month - 01/10/2019

January is Cervical Cancer Awareness Month — a great time for physicians to promote regular screenings among patients as well as vaccination against the cancer-causing human papillomavirus (HPV).

Do You Speak Effectively About Flu Vaccines? - 11/30/2018

You know that your patients should get an influenza vaccine every year. But do you know how to speak to them about why? If you’re shaking your head at this point (or even if you’re not really sure), register now for the upcoming webinar: Communicating the Benefits of Seasonal Influenza in Texas.

Health Officials Investigating Rise in Infant Botulism Cases - 11/19/2018

Honey pacifiers purchased in Mexico are suspected in an unusual increase in infant botulism this year, state health officials said late last week.

More Cases of Rare Spinal Condition Reported in Texas - 11/08/2018

Texas physicians should report suspected cases of acute flaccid myelitis (AFM) to their local health department because of increased cases of the rare spinal condition, state and federal public health officials advise.

Last Flu Season Was Even Worse Than We Thought - 10/19/2018

In Texas, more than 11,000 people died from flu and its complications during the 2017-18 flu season, including 16 children, the Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) said.    

Lessons From 1918’s Deadly Flu Outbreak - 10/12/2018

Is it possible for the world to experience another catastrophe like the 1918 flu influenza outbreak? That is the question to be explored during a presentation Wednesday at the Department of State Health Services headquarters in Austin.

Vaccines on a Shelf: Vaccines in Development Often Sit Around Untested - 10/04/2018

Vaccines in development for diseases in Texas and beyond often sit around untested.

Evidence of Zika Infection Found in More Than 250 Texas Mothers - 09/06/2018

Officials have identified 265 Texas women who had evidence of a Zika infection while pregnant, a new report from the Texas Department of State Health Services says.

Officials Warn of Possible Measles Exposure - 08/27/2018

Physicians should be on the lookout for measles symptoms after a person with a confirmed case of the virus visited the Dallas area in August.