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Latest Public Health Articles on PCE's The Exchange

The 2020 Pandemic Thanksgiving: Creating a “Safer” Gathering for Family and Friends

The 2020 Pandemic Thanksgiving: Creating a “Safer” Gathering for Family and Friends

What is the best plan for safely gathering with family and/or friends this Thanksgiving, given the ongoing pandemic and rising numbers of hospitalizations and COVID-19 cases? What measures can we take to mitigate risk? Infectious disease experts are weighing in on this question.

Here are some tips, based on the current data regarding COVID-19 transmission, as well as some common-sense measures:


The 2020 Pandemic Thanksgiving: Creating a “Safer” Setting for the Big Meal

The 2020 Pandemic Thanksgiving: Creating a “Safer” Setting for the Big Meal

What are some options for hosting a Thanksgiving meal with family and/or friends, while reducing some of the known risks associated with sharing meals? Infec... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health

What Is the Difference Between the Flu and COVID-19?

What Is the Difference Between the Flu and COVID-19?

With flu season right around the corner, healthcare providers are going to be challenged with differentiating flu from COVID-19. Th... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Screening for Unhealthy Drug Use

Screening for Unhealthy Drug Use

Despite all the knowledge and technology that we have these days, we still see a vast amount of patients who engage in unhealthy substance use (eg, alcohol,... Continue Reading

Filed under: Public Health, Substance Abuse

Climate Change and Health: Let’s Take a Stand to Save Lives!

Climate Change and Health: Let’s Take a Stand to Save Lives!

Both the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) agree that climate change has a significant negative effect... Continue Reading

Filed under: Miscellaneous, Public Health

Protecting Patients From Unsafe Air Quality

Protecting Patients From Unsafe Air Quality

With all of the fires raging in California, many other areas far from them are experiencing poor air quality too. Poor air quality can have both long- and sh... Continue Reading

Filed under: Public Health, Pulmonary Medicine

Voting in the Midst of a Pandemic: What Are Some Options to Get People Registered to Vote?

Voting in the Midst of a Pandemic: What Are Some Options to Get People Registered to Vote?

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, US citizens who wanted to obtain a voter registration application could walk into any public library, post office, or Departm... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Public Health

Recommending Isolation and Quarantine Timeframes for Coronavirus: Why Is There So Much Confusion?

Recommending Isolation and Quarantine Timeframes for Coronavirus: Why Is There So Much Confusion?

I have been working in a drive-through coronavirus testing site since March; part of this entails calling patients with positive COVID-19 test results to dis... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Documenting Skin Color in Medicine: Are We Unconsciously Racially Profiling?

Documenting Skin Color in Medicine: Are We Unconsciously Racially Profiling?

Practicing medicine in 2020 has certainly been challenging, especially given recent worldwide discussion on race relations. In a recent Dermatology Grand Rou... Continue Reading

Filed under: Dermatology, Public Health

Would You Volunteer to Enroll in a COVID-19 Vaccine Trial?

Would You Volunteer to Enroll in a COVID-19 Vaccine Trial?

There are more than 160 COVID-19 vaccines currently in development, with the University of Oxford/AstraZeneca AZD1222 vaccine (an attenuated altered adenovir... Continue Reading

Filed under: Allergy/Immunology, Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Breastfeeding and Coronavirus: My Experience From the Frontlines With an Infected Mom

Breastfeeding and Coronavirus: My Experience From the Frontlines With an Infected Mom

One of the challenging features of COVID-19 is its ability to sweep through families. In my experience, this is more prevalent in multigenerational family li... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health, Women's Health

Coronavirus Transmission and Superspreading Events: Can What We’ve Learned Help Inform Future Guidelines?

Coronavirus Transmission and Superspreading Events: Can What We’ve Learned Help Inform Future Guidelines?

Across the United States, businesses are starting to open under government-guided restrictions. The reopening guidelines vary from state to state and even fr... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Who Gets the Egg: The Chicken or the Rooster? Hydroxychloroquine Under the Microscope

Who Gets the Egg: The Chicken or the Rooster? Hydroxychloroquine Under the Microscope

What We Know We know that hydroxychloroquine (HCQ) is FDA approved for rheumatoid arthritis (RA), systemic lupus erythematosus... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Public Health

Global Commitment and Pandemic Prevention

Global Commitment and Pandemic Prevention

Several years ago, I was fortunate to hike in the Zambia bush where I was accompanied by a naturalist who spoke of the many issues related to wildlife trade... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Miscellaneous, Public Health

COVID-19 and the Curve

COVID-19 and the Curve

As of the writing of this post, coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19), caused by severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2), has been confirm... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Infectious Diseases, Public Health

The Difference Between Isolation and Quarantine

The Difference Between Isolation and Quarantine

There seems to be confusion between what it means to isolate versus quarantine people. According to the CDC, the definitions of isolation and quarantine are:... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Social Distancing During COVID-19

Social Distancing During COVID-19

Social distancing is a measure recommended by public health officials that aims to restrict sick people from coming in contact with healthy people to slow th... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Upside Down: Influenza B Appears to be Waning While Influenza A is Increasing

Upside Down: Influenza B Appears to be Waning While Influenza A is Increasing

In a typical flu season, influenza A activity begins between November and January and fades after a few months. Concurrently, influenza B occurs with increas... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health

You're Darned if You Do, You're Damned if You Don't

You're Darned if You Do, You're Damned if You Don't

Sorry, but I believe we are past the point of being worried about scaring people about the novel coronavirus 2019, now simply COVID-19 (in various forms of c... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Coronavirus Update: Transmission – What Do We Know?

Coronavirus Update: Transmission – What Do We Know?

On January 30, 2020, the first confirmed case of person-to-person 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) transmission was reported in the United States. Also on... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Coronavirus Update: Thoughts on Its Origin

Coronavirus Update: Thoughts on Its Origin

We've known for years that influenza virus occurs in both humans and animals—including swine and birds—and... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Infectious Disease Update – Novel Community-acquired Human Coronavirus: CDC Guidelines for Providers

Infectious Disease Update – Novel Community-acquired Human Coronavirus: CDC Guidelines for Providers

As we know, there is currently no vaccine or specific treatment for the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) first reported from Wuhan, China. CDC screening recomme... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Infectious Disease Update – Novel Community-acquired Human Coronavirus

Infectious Disease Update – Novel Community-acquired Human Coronavirus

On Thursday, January 23, 2020, Chinese authorities closed Wuhan's airports, train stations, bus stations, and ports. By now, several other citie... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Influenza-like Illness Activity Has Been High for Weeks…and Continues to Increase

Influenza-like Illness Activity Has Been High for Weeks…and Continues to Increase

The CDC reports that influenza-like illness activity has been high for weeks, and is continuing to increase. Combined with the fact that influenza B (Victori... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Mistakes in the Ambulatory Care Setting

Mistakes in the Ambulatory Care Setting

A report published in late October entitled "Deep Dive: Safe Ambulatory Care, Strategies for Patient Safety and Risk Reduction" Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Practice Management/Career, Public Health

Intermittent Fasting

Intermittent Fasting

If you think about how humans have been eating for centuries, it has likely included some "natural" intermittent fasting. For examp... Continue Reading

Filed under: Cardiometabolic, Miscellaneous, Preventive Medicine, Public Health

circadian rhythm clock

Circadian Rhythms and Metabolic Syndrome

As researchers explore the complex relationship of circadian rhythm and metabolic syndrome, they are searching for root causes and best treatment approaches Continue Reading

Filed under: Cardiometabolic, Miscellaneous, Preventive Medicine, Public Health

Managing Patients With Suspected Vape-Related Lung Problems

Managing Patients With Suspected Vape-Related Lung Problems

We have been hearing about more and more cases of lipoid pneumonia linked to marijuana oils in e-cigarettes. According to the CDC, as of November 2019, there... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health, Pulmonary Medicine

Multi-agency Information for Patients and Providers: e-Cigarette, or Vaping, Product Use Associated Lung Injury (EVALI)

Multi-agency Information for Patients and Providers: e-Cigarette, or Vaping, Product Use Associated Lung Injury (EVALI)

By now, we have all heard the news concerning the dangers of e-cigarettes and vaping and have likely received a myriad of updates in our ever-growing e-mail... Continue Reading

Filed under: Public Health, Pulmonary Medicine

November is Diabetes Awareness Month

November is Diabetes Awareness Month

Along with the colder weather and the promise of holiday season, November brings us the opportunity to raise awareness about diabetes. Both type 1 and type 2... Continue Reading

Filed under: Cardiometabolic, NPs & PAs, Practice Management/Career, Preventive Medicine, Public Health

How Have Carcinogens Tainted Our Generic Drug Supply?

How Have Carcinogens Tainted Our Generic Drug Supply?

In July 2018, the FDA announced that a known carcinogen, called N-Nitrosodiumdimethylamine, or NDMA, had been found in valsartan manufactured by Zhejiang Hua... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Public Health

'Tis the Flu Season! 2020 Influenza Updates

'Tis the Flu Season! 2020 Influenza Updates

On August 23, 2019, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published Prevention and Control of Seasonal Influenza with Vaccines: Recommendations of t... Continue Reading

Filed under: Preventive Medicine, Public Health

Beware: The “Ankle-biter” Mosquitoes

Beware: The “Ankle-biter” Mosquitoes

It's the end of summer and the mosquitoes are biting. Two invasive (non-native) mosquito species have been identified in California and other parts of the Un... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health

What’s the Best Way to Stay Hydrated?

What’s the Best Way to Stay Hydrated?

I see patients with acute illnesses in urgent care every week, and many have fever and anorexia, and are a bit dehydrated. As part of the management plan, I... Continue Reading

Filed under: Miscellaneous, Public Health

Disaster Preparedness

Disaster Preparedness

Since we are in the heart of hurricane season on the East Coast, it is important to be ready. September is National Preparedness Month to promote family and... Continue Reading

Filed under: Public Health

Do Meal Times Affect Weight Control?

Do Meal Times Affect Weight Control?

In 2009, researchers at Northwestern University conducted a study on mice and timed feeding, later publishing their research in Obesity. For 6 weeks... Continue Reading

Filed under: Preventive Medicine, Public Health

A Glimpse of What Artificial Intelligence May Bring to Medicine

A Glimpse of What Artificial Intelligence May Bring to Medicine

I’ve always been fascinated by what the intersection of big data, technology, and medicine will bring. While I am a firm believer that IBM's Watson will no... Continue Reading

Filed under: Preventive Medicine, Public Health

Consider Deprescribing in Our Older Adults

Consider Deprescribing in Our Older Adults

We all have patients in our practices who are older and on numerous medications. They are stabilizing their problems but are faced with the reality of nearin... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Preventive Medicine, Public Health

The Mediterranean Diet and Cardiovascular Disease

The Mediterranean Diet and Cardiovascular Disease

The Mediterranean diet represents the most notable overall dietary pattern in nutritional epidemiology that has been extensively studied over the last 2 deca... Continue Reading

Filed under: Public Health

National Stop the Bleed Month

National Stop the Bleed Month

Did you know that May 2019 is the first-ever National Stop the Bleed Month? Also, May 23 is the second annual Stop the Bleed® Day. So what is “... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Miscellaneous, Preventive Medicine, Public Health

It’s a Digital World: Screen Time Recommendations for Children

It’s a Digital World: Screen Time Recommendations for Children

We definitely live in a different day and age than when I was a child… As children, my siblings and I just opened the door and went outside to play all day... Continue Reading

Filed under: Miscellaneous, Preventive Medicine, Public Health

Measles Outbreak – A Public Health Concern

Measles Outbreak – A Public Health Concern

The modern world was turned upside down in 1997 when researcher Andrew Wakefield suggested there was a direct correlation between the MMR (measles/mumps/rube... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Preventive Medicine, Public Health

Universal Influenza Vaccine Begins Phase I Clinical Trials

Universal Influenza Vaccine Begins Phase I Clinical Trials

The National Institutes of Health have begun the first clinical trial of an innovative universal influenza vaccine candidate. A Phase I trial will examine th... Continue Reading

Filed under: Allergy/Immunology, Health Policy and Trends, Public Health

Patient Autonomy: Keeping Our Patients’ Self-Determination Preserved

Patient Autonomy: Keeping Our Patients’ Self-Determination Preserved

If you’ve practiced in medicine for at least 20 years, you may remember the case of Terri Schiavo, a woman in her 20s who was in a coma for more than a dec... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Public Health

Who Should Be Responsible? Social Media and Accurate Vaccine Information

Who Should Be Responsible? Social Media and Accurate Vaccine Information

The World Health Organization recently listed what they call “vaccine hesitancy”—the reluctance or refusal to be vaccinated despite the availability of... Continue Reading

Filed under: Infectious Diseases, Public Health

Vaping: What Parents Need to Know

Vaping: What Parents Need to Know

So what is vaping? Vaping is the inhaling and exhaling of an aerosol produced by using a vaping device. Vaping is illegal for anyone under the age of 18, and... Continue Reading

Filed under: Public Health, Substance Abuse

Substance Use Disorders in Youth

Substance Use Disorders in Youth

In the United States, about 5% of youth aged 12 to 17 will develop a substance use disorder (SUD) each year, but fewer than 10% of the 1.3 million youth who... Continue Reading

Filed under: Public Health, Substance Abuse

States' Involvement With Medicaid Expansion

States' Involvement With Medicaid Expansion

For a little over 50 years, Medicaid has provided healthcare as a stopgap to millions of people. With passage of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), few states ut... Continue Reading

Filed under: Health Policy and Trends, Public Health

Super Bowl and Food Recovery

Super Bowl and Food Recovery

Super Bowl Sunday is reportedly one of the biggest eating days of the year, behind Thanksgiving. There were lots of parties and celebrations this week, which... Continue Reading

Filed under: Preventive Medicine, Public Health

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