Public Health

College Students: Put Required Vaccination on To-Do List - 02/21/2024

As young adults make final preparations for college, the physicians of the Texas Medical Association remind college-bound students to put the meningitis vaccination on their to-do list.

Pregnant? Make Sure You’re Vaccinated to Protect Yourself, Baby From Disease - 02/21/2024

Vaccinations before and during pregnancy are important to protect both mother and baby. Three vaccinations are recommended: flu, Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and acellular pertussis), and MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella).

DSHS Introduces Interactive Respiratory Illness Dashboard - 02/08/2024

The Texas Department of State Health Services has developed an interactive dashboard to help physicians across the state combat respiratory illness during its peak season, which typically runs from October through May in Texas.

TMA Honors Houston Surgeon with Public Health Lifetime Achievement Award - 01/31/2024

A highlight of the Texas Medical Association’s Leadership Summit in Austin, TMA awarded its prestigious Laurance N. Nickey MD, Lifetime Achievement Award to Houston trauma surgeon Kenneth Mattox, MD, for his dedication to the medical field since 1964, and notably for his relief efforts during Hurricane Katrina.

Sickle Cell Disease Care Targeted in State, Federal Efforts - 12/06/2023

Physicians could see improvements in their ability to care for patients with sickle cell disease as moves by the state and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services aim to standardize and improve treatment for the disease and expand access to care.

Widening the Net: New RSV Preventions Can Reduce Seasonal Burden of Disease - 12/04/2023

These new preventive treatments for RSV can help reduce seasonal burden of disease.

Care Connections: TMA Foundation Grants Tackle Public Health Problems - 11/09/2023

TMA Foundation grants offer a lifeline to Texas physicians tackling public health problems.

Nominate a Public Health Leader for the Nickey Lifetime Achievement Award - 09/26/2023

In recognition of outstanding contributions to medicine through a commitment to public health, the Texas Medical Association’s Council on Science and Public Health is calling for nominations for the next Laurance N. Nickey, MD, Lifetime Achievement Award.

Physicians Warn: New Drug Overdose Threat Contains Veterinary Tranquilizer Xylazine - 09/18/2023

Xylazine, a tranquilizer used in veterinary medicine, is appearing in illicit street drugs with fentanyl, compounding the dangers of the opioid overdose epidemic. Xylazine, also called “tranq” according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, is used to tranquilize animals. It is not approved for human use and has killed people who have taken the drug.

Physicians Alarmed by Sharp Spike in Accidental Overdose Deaths Fueled by Illegal Drugs - 09/18/2023

A surge in accidental opioid overdose deaths in Texas is showing no signs of slowing down, and Texas physicians warn the rise in illegally produced drugs laced with fentanyl are to blame. They also say increasing the availability of life-saving, overdose-reversing drugs like naloxone, as well as addiction treatment programs, can help.

Physicians Urge Texans to Safely Return Unused Prescription Medication - 09/18/2023

Texas physicians recommend people with unused or expired prescription drugs at home dispose of them safely this weekend, so they are not accidently consumed. The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration is organizing its biannual prescription drug Take Back Day on Saturday, Oct. 29. Prescription drugs can be returned anonymously at pop up locations across the state.

Talk to Patients About: Hib - 09/11/2023

Talk to your patients about Haemophilus influenzae type b – or Hib, which, despite its name, does not cause influenza. However, Hib causes several severe illnesses, particularly meningitis, mostly in children younger than 5.

Combating Measles Resource Center - 09/06/2023

The December 2014 "Disneyland" nationwide measles outbreak and the 2013 outbreak in North Texas -- all primarily among unimmunized persons -- brings new attention to a disease once thought to be eliminated in the United States. TMA has collected the information below to help you and your patients combat this deadly disease.  

Coronavirus Fears Overshadowing Influenza Threat - 09/06/2023

Although the new coronavirus outbreak that began in China has grabbed headlines recently, physicians should remind their patients that influenza continues to be a major concern in Texas.

Pertussis (Whooping Cough) - 09/06/2023

Since the 1980s, pertussis cases in the United States have increased, especially among adolescents and adults. The best way to prevent pertussis infections among adolescents and adults is a Tdap booster.

Paying Plasma Centers Proliferate as Volunteer Blood Donors Dwindle - 09/05/2023

As demand for plasma for medicinal products continues to increase, some physicians caution that for-profit plasma centers may threaten an already fragile volunteer blood donation base.

What if Someone Walks Into My Office With Ebola? - 08/31/2023

How do I protect my patients and staff if someone presents with symptoms of Ebola and similar infections?

Hard Hats for Little Heads Event Ideas - 08/31/2023

Ideas for a Successful Event

Health and Science Initiatives - 08/31/2023

Health and Science Initiatives

Report Positions TMA Response to Firearms Violence - 08/30/2023

“The physicians of Texas continue to grieve with our fellow Texans over yet another heinous episode of gun violence,” Texas Medical Association President David C. Fleeger, MD, said. “This is more than a public safety problem – this is a public health crisis. Thus, it will require public health type solutions.”

Have Your Say on Trauma Facility Designations - 08/30/2023

The Texas Department of State Health Services has released a second version of the rules on trauma facilitiy designations. TMA is encouraging you to have your voice and expertise heard.

Organized Medicine Assists in Maui Wildfire Response; How You Can Help - 08/21/2023

As aid efforts in the aftermath of the Maui wildfires turn to recovery and rescue, local organized medicine partners are deeply involved in assisting with the island’s health care needs and are sharing opportunities for medicine at large to do the same.

Precipitous West Nile Virus Season Warrants Extra Vigilance, Public Health Officials Warn - 08/15/2023

With mosquitoes showing more West Nile activity this summer than in all of 2022, the Texas Department of State Health Services recommends physicians stay on guard for resultant disease and encourage prevention of mosquito-borne illnesses with patients.

Back to School Season Warrants Pneumococcal Vaccine Reminders - 08/08/2023

With school starting back up, Texas Medical Association public health experts remind their colleagues that now's the time to stress the importance of getting children up to date on their pneumococcal vaccine.

UTMB Medical Students “Lock” Firearm Safety into Community Minds - 07/25/2023

With help from the Texas Medical Association Foundation (TMAF), members of TMA’s Medical Student Section at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston (UTMB) are promoting firearm education in their community through a student-led Firearm Safety Intervention Program.