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Talk to Patients About: Cleanliness vs. Vaccines - 03/31/2020

Historical data proves vaccines work. Year-over-year rates for vaccine-preventable diseases like measles and whooping cough show that the number of cases drops sharply and remains low after a vaccine is introduced. Anti-vaccine activists have a theory to explain away this data. They say the rise of cleanliness and hygiene in the late 1800s – not vaccines – was the real force in stopping these diseases.


Bracing for the Big Ones: Novel Diseases like COVID-19 Could Test Texas' Public Health System - 03/31/2020

Novel diseases like COVID-19 could be a tough test for Texas’ public health system.


In Defense of Public Health: Peter Hotez, MD, on the Comeback of Preventable Diseases - 03/31/2020

Preventable diseases are back on the map, and Peter Hotez, MD, Texas’ most outspoken vaccine researcher, says physicians need to think globally to help stop the trend.


Talk to Patients About: Vaccines During Pregnancy - 03/30/2020

Protecting moms and babies from certain diseases often starts with pregnant women. Child-bearing women may not realize they pass on disease-fighting antibodies to their babies, protecting them early in life. That protection improves greatly when women get certain vaccines before and during pregnancy. They also may not realize getting vaccinated right after pregnancy can stop the spread of illnesses.  


What Does Be Wise — Immunize Offer for Physicians? - 03/17/2020

Be Wise can help you implement or enhance vaccination practices in your office with our vaccination toolkits and continuing medical education courses; educate about vaccines in your office, in the media, or at public gatherings such as parent-teacher associations and civic organizations; and more!


Texas Physicians Say: Remain Calm, Protect Yourself, Stay Safe - 03/17/2020

Statement by Texas Medical Association (TMA) President David C. Fleeger, MD, about Texas Gov. Greg Abbott’s state of emergency declaration regarding COVID-19.


House Bill 3703 (86th Texas Legislature) and Expansion of Texas’ Compassionate Use Act - 03/12/2020

In its 2019 session, the Texas Legislature passed House Bill 3703 (Rep. Stephanie Klick), effective immediately, expand­ing the list of diseases that may be treated with low-tetrahydrocannabinols (THC) cannabis. The bill also broadened the types of specialty physicians who may qualify to register with the Compassionate Use Registry of Texas to recommend treatment with low-THC cannabis to patients. A general discussion of these changes and more are discussed here.


Coronavirus vs. Influenza: The Differences and What We Need to know - 03/12/2020

As physicians, other medical experts, and the public learn more about the 2019 Novel Coronavirus, or COVID-19, scientists are learning more about the similarities – and differences – between COVID-19 and influenza. Both viruses cause respiratory disease, yet the World Health Organization (WHO) reports there are important differences between the two and how they spread.


Fighting Epidemics: Robert Haley, MD, Wins Inaugural Nickey Award for Public Health - 03/12/2020

Robert Haley, MD's work on West Nile virus – along with numerous other achievements – earned Dr. Haley the inaugural Dr. Laurance N. Nickey Lifetime Achievement Award. Presented by the Texas Medical Association’s Council on Science and Public Health, the award recognizes a TMA member physician who has made outstanding contributions to medicine through a significant commitment to public health.


How Do I Plan a Be Wise — Immunize Event or Clinic? - 03/11/2020

TMA has the tools you need to plan, organize, and carry out an immunization clinic. Or, if you want to staff a booth at your community health fair, we have free materials to educate that vaccinations are important, safe, and effective. Plus, our free merchandise for kids and Beatrice the Bee mascot make your event more fun.


What’s Better, Immunity From a Shot, or From the Disease? - 03/03/2020

Although suffering through a disease sometimes gives you immunity from catching that same disease later in life, vaccinating against diseases instead is the safest way to protect yourself and your loved ones.


Be Wise Grants Deadline Extended - 03/03/2020

Thinking about hosting a Texas Medical Association Be Wise – ImmunizeSM education event or shot clinic? If so, you’re in luck because the deadline to apply for a Local Impact Grant to help fund the event has been extended to March 15.


Strength in Numbers: Texas Physicians Promote U.S. Census to Improve Funding - 02/28/2020

Every 10 years, the U.S. Census Bureau tries to enumerate each person living in the U.S., and the stakes always are high. Physicians are trusted members of the community so they’re in a perfect position to talk to reluctant people about the importance of the census.


Under the Gun: How Texas Hospitals, Clinics Can Prepare for Active Shooter Situations - 02/28/2020

Texas hospitals and clinics may need to change how they prepare for active shooter situations.


Learn More About Texas Youth Health at Symposium - 02/26/2020

If you’re interested in learning more about keeping Texas teens healthy and you’d like to make new connections to thought leaders and your peers, make plans to attend the Texas Campaign to Prevent Teen Pregnancy’s ninth-annual symposium, set for April 6-8 in San Antonio.


Spread the Word: Texas Needs Organ Donors - 02/25/2020

The Texas Legislature in 2019 designated Wednesday, Feb. 26, “Texas Bone Marrow, Blood, and Organ Donation Registry Day." It's an effort inspired by Anh Nguyen Reiss, MD, a Houston obstetrician and gynecologist who died in 2016 of myelodysplastic syndrome. Her unsuccessful effort to find a bone marrow donor spurred greater education about the need for more donors of all types.


Talk to Patients About: Why Do Some Vaccinated People Still Get Sick? - 02/24/2020

Every so often, physicians encounter a patient who still gets sick despite getting vaccinated against that disease. Patients naturally ask, how could this happen? There are various reasons.


Be Wise — Immunize Local Impact Grants - 02/20/2020

Apply for a grant.TMA’s Be Wise — ImmunizeSM is accepting applications for local vaccination programs.


Public Health: Tobacco Triumph - 02/19/2020

Texas physicians got the kind of huge win on tobacco issues they haven’t seen in decades – a law to keep tobacco products away from young people.


Four Texas Communities Receive Vaccination Grants - 02/18/2020

Four communities across Texas will receive disease-preventing and potentially life-saving vaccinations, thanks to Texas Medical Association’s (TMA’s) Be Wise —ImmunizeSM program. TMA recently awarded $7,600 in grants to physicians, medical students, and TMA Alliance (TMAA) chapters (comprising physician volunteers and their spouses), to provide free and low-cost vaccinations to uninsured and underinsured Texans in their hometowns. 


TMA Grant to Help Vaccinate El Pasoans for Free - 02/18/2020

Children and adults in two Texas communities, El Paso and Houston, will receive disease-preventing and potentially life-saving vaccinations, thanks to special grants from the Texas Medical Association’s (TMA’s) Be Wise —ImmunizeSM program. TMA recently awarded $3,300 in grants to TMA chapters at two of the state’s medical schools to provide free vaccinations to uninsured and underinsured Texans in their hometowns.


TMA Grant to Help Vaccinate Houstonians for Free - 02/18/2020

Children and adults in two Texas communities, Houston and El Paso, will receive disease-preventing and potentially life-saving vaccinations, thanks to special grants from the Texas Medical Association’s (TMA’s) Be Wise —ImmunizeSM program. TMA recently awarded $3,300 in grants to TMA chapters at two of the state’s medical schools to provide free vaccinations to uninsured and underinsured Texans in their hometowns.


TMA Grant to Help San Antonians Fight Flu - 02/18/2020

Underserved patients at various San Antonio clinics will receive influenza vaccines thanks to a grant from the Texas Medical Association’s (TMA’s) Be Wise — ImmunizeSM program. TMA recently awarded the TMA Chapter at UT Health San Antonio’s Joe R. & Teresa Lozano Long School of Medicine the funds to provide 150 free flu shots for patients at five student-run clinics. Vaccines will be given weekly through the end of January.


Reaching for the Cure: Texas Medicaid Doesn't Cover Hepatitis C Drugs Until Patients Are Seriously Ill - 02/18/2020

Infectious disease specialist Ogechika Alozie, MD, has a ready-made solution for patients diagnosed with hepatitis C now that five medications can rid patients of this deadly disease. But for Texas Medicaid patients, there’s a catch. The program does not pay for the cure based just on a diagnosis. Instead, Medicaid pays only after a blood test, biopsy, or sonogram shows the liver is so badly damaged that it’s on the verge of cirrhosis. At that point, patients who get the medication will be cured of their hepatitis C but more vulnerable to other deadly illnesses, like liver cancer.


Clearing the Haze: Texas Physicians Demystify Vaping - 02/18/2020

The rise in EVALI deaths and hospitalizations has changed the conversation about vaping and gives physicians an opportunity to champion tighter rules and higher taxes on an untested, unhealthy product that remains lightly regulated in both the U.S. and Texas.