Recent News

In 1918, it wasn’t the coronavirus. It was the flu.

Mar 10 2020

​A virus makes its way around the globe causing sickness, death, and spreading panic. Avoid crowds, the public is advised. Wash your hands. Avoid spitting in public. “Are you following this coronavirus thing?” asked Robert Hicks, former director of the Mütter Museum, as he took a seat in an office tucked behind the rooms of antique display cases of anatomical specimens. “Some striking similarities to 1918.” The “Spanish flu” pandemic of 1918-19 — the subject of a new, ongoing exhibit at the Mütter, a medical history museum — is often overshadowed by World War I, but it killed tens of millions of people worldwide. With nothing to offer the sick but palliative care, influenza was as frightening as the COVID-19 coronavirus is today.

Source: The Chicago Tribune The Chicago Tribune

Is a 'Universal' Flu Vaccine on the Horizon?

Mar 09 2020

Work is proceeding apace on a "universal" flu vaccine capable of protecting humans from all forms of influenza, researchers report. A single dose of a synthetic universal flu vaccine called FLU-v appears capable of providing safe long-term protection across a broad spectrum of influenza viruses, a new clinical trial has shown. FLU-v outperformed a placebo in elevating people's immune response, as measured by a number of different biomarkers related to the immune system, researchers found.

Source: U.S. News & World Report U.S. News & World Report

How do scientists create vaccines for new viruses?

Mar 09 2020

As concern about the COVID-19 coronavirus outbreak spreads across the world, scientists are working to develop a vaccine. Over 3,800 worldwide have died of the virus, which first appeared in the Chinese city of Wuhan in December. The World Health Organization (WHO) has flagged the outbreak as an international emergency. When the virus began, Chinese experts unravelled its DNA in record time. Now, hundreds of scientists around the world have begun to create a vaccine, which, according to WHO estimates, could take a year and a half to produce. The development of a vaccine can take years, with no certainty of result. Some diseases, such as HIV, have been studied by scientists for decades without a vaccine to be found.

Source: Euronews Euronews

Blog: Senate Bill 20-163 protects our schools

Mar 08 2020

​Early in December the initial cases emerged of what is now identified as a novel form of coronavirus. To date this virus has traveled to 60 countries, infected more than 85,000 people, and resulted in 2,918 deaths globally. Within the United States several people have been infected and at least 14 deaths have been reported. Last week Gov. Jared Polis confirmed the first two cases in Colorado. Without an effective vaccine, rapid transmission between unprotected individuals occurs, illustrating the importance of a complete vaccination schedule to protect our society as a whole. Colorado is one of 15 states that allows personal belief exemptions for vaccinations. Coincidently, vaccination rates for children entering kindergarten are among the lowest in the country. This lack of regulation on vaccine requirements puts Coloradans, especially the elderly and those with a compromised immune system, at unnecessary risk.

Source: YourHub YourHub

David Quinn recalls playing in empty arena in ‘Measles Game’

Mar 07 2020

The NHL has not yet advised its teams to prepare contingency plans for playing games without spectators in the arena as a means of protection against coronavirus, even as has the NBA. But if that does become a necessity, David Quinn has experience with the phenomenon. See, the Blueshirts coach was a freshman defenseman who played for Boston University against Lowell in the “Measles Game” at Walter Brown Arena on Feb. 27, 1985, in which spectators were barred because of an outbreak of the disease on campus.

Source: The New York Post The New York Post

Flu season easing slightly, but not for children

Mar 06 2020

The U.S. is in the midst of a harsh flu season for children. At least 34 million Americans have been sickened with the flu so far this season and an estimated 20,000 people have died from it, with the illness taking a higher-than-expected toll on children, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported Friday. As of Feb. 29, there also were 136 flu-related deaths in children reported this season. That total is higher than every season since reporting began in 2004-2005 with the exception of the 2009 pandemic, the CDC said.

Source: NBC News NBC News

Utah woman may be longest living polio survivor in the U.S.

Mar 06 2020

A Utah woman could be the longest living survivor in the U.S. of a renowned pandemic. At its peak in the middle of the 20th century, polio killed half a million people every year. Longevity despite hardship came down to one thing: extraordinary strength. In Butch Cassidy Country, you have to be strong to survive. It’s where you’ll find 97-year-old Loraine Allen – in a nursing home inside a wing of Garfield Memorial Hospital in Panguitch. Although hard of hearing, Allen is surrounded by sounds. The sounds she loves most, though, are the voices of her family, and memories of a time of struggle.


Colorado Senate passes new vaccine bill requiring parents who don’t vaccinate to take new steps

Feb 28 2020

​The Colorado State Senate has passed a bill requiring parents who don't vaccinate their children to take new steps. The measure doesn't require any parent to now vaccinate their child however it does require them to either have a form signed by a physician or take a state sanctioned online course before they fill out an exemption form. Colorado parents are allowed to not vaccinate their child for personal belief, religious, and medical exemptions. This impacts parents who choose the Religious or personal belief exemption. The bill now heads to the State House where it is expected to pass.

Source: FOX 31 Denver FOX 31 Denver

Mumps Outbreak At Keystone Ski Resort Infects 19 And Counting

Feb 26 2020

Health officials are investigating an outbreak of mumps that started among employees of Keystone Resort in Colorado. Of the 19 cases identified so far, 18 of them are resort employees. “It’s not going to be surprising to see that number change as our investigation continues,” said Sara Lopez, nursing manager with Summit County Public Health, which identified the first three cases about a month ago. She said at this point it’s unclear how the one non-employee came down with the illness.


CDC Releases Interim Flu Vaccine Effectiveness Report

Feb 26 2020

​According to a Feb. 21 CDC Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report,( current influenza vaccine has been 45% effective overall against 2019-2020 seasonal influenza A and B viruses. Specifically, the flu vaccine has been 50% effective against influenza B/Victoria viruses and 37% effective against influenza A(H1N1)pdm09. According to former AAFP Vaccine Science Fellow John Epling, M.D., M.S.Ed., of Roanoke, Va., that means the vaccine is about as effective as it typically is in a season when it offers a decent match to circulating influenza antigens.

Source: AAFP News AAFP News