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Blog Posts in October, 2012

  • Florida's New Brain Injury Law Is A Big Step Towards Safer Sports

    In the current environment of partisan politics, a unanimous piece of legislation is often a newsworthy event. Florida passed one such law in October, aimed the equally newsworthy goal of preventing brain injuries for young athletes. This new law illustrates how important it is for school staff to respond appropriately after a student suffers a head injury - anything less can seriously jeopardize ...
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  • Update: 26 Deaths, Millions Without Power Due To Hurricane Sandy

    Although downgraded from a hurricane before making landfall, Sandy hit the northeast hard with at least 26 deaths being reported, and millions across 15 states without power. Reclassified as a sub-tropical cyclone, the storm landed in New York City Monday evening, and is expected to turn north and reach Canada by late Tuesday. However, the effects of the storm can be felt all the way west to the ...
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  • Halloween: Potentially Permanent Damage From Costume Contacts

    Cosmetic contacts have gotten much more popular in recent years. Dramatic and surreal eyes can round out the perfect costume and they are bound to figure prominently in many Florida Halloween events this year. State and federal authorities, however, are warning about potential dangers: people who buy contacts without going through a required eye check-up run the risk of permanent eye injuries. In ...
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  • Cyber Crime Affects Barnes & Noble, Florida College

    Credit card information of Barnes & Noble customers at 63 stores across the country was stolen last month. Although the breach was discovered in September, Barnes & Noble waited to disclose the information as it is being investigated by the FBI. A spokeswoman for the book store revealed that PIN pad devices used by customers to swipe debit and credit cards had been compromised in each store. The ...
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  • Unorthodox Brain Injury Treatment: Some Think Fish Oil Might Help

    The human brain is an extremely complex organ that still holds many medical mysteries. When a massive brain injury occurs, doctors have only a limited number of tools to try to minimize the long-term damage. After doctors exhaust these remedies, the best modern medicine can do is "wait and see" whether the brain can put itself back together. Recently, an experimental treatment seemed to confirm ...
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  • Faulty Hotel Locks Investigated By ABC News

    A visit by an ABC News reporter to a Holiday Inn Express revealed that electronic hotel locks can be opened without a hotel-issued key. The locks, made by Onity, are sold to thousands of hotels globally, and hackers claim to have discovered that the company left a security port uncovered that allows the locks to be accessed with a homemade device. The device can be made by anyone, with ...
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  • Fungal Meningitis Outbreak Focuses Scrutiny On Drug Compounders

    The fungal meningitis outbreak has now claimed 23 lives and triggered around 300 reported cases in Florida and around the country. As many as 14,000 other patients could be at risk after receiving contaminated steroid injections. One facility is at the center of the outbreak: the New England Compounding Center. As the outbreak continues, attention has focused on what might have gone wrong at this ...
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  • Meningitis Outbreak Leads To First Lawsuit

    A Minnesota woman has filed a lawsuit against the pharmacy responsible for the meningitis outbreak that has swept across 11 states. The suit filed Thursday in federal court may be the first stemming from this outbreak. In the lawsuit, the woman claims she was informed she received contaminated shots, and should see a doctor and undergo tests. However, the results of her tests are unknown. She is ...
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  • Florida Fungal Meningitis Outbreak Update

    Two more people in Florida have been diagnosed with fungal meningitis as a result of receiving a contaminated steroid injection produced by the New England Compounding Center (NECC). NECC is responsible for over 200 fungal meningitis infections across the United States; the number of people infected continues to rise. Warnings about possible contamination now include all of NECC's other products, ...
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  • Dangers Of Counterfeit Air Bags

    Federal safety regulators are warning of the dangers of counterfeit air bags being installed by auto repair shops across the United States. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration's testing found that the counterfeit air bags either fail to deploy or malfunction and send metal shrapnel flying into the vehicle. The counterfeit air bags look almost identical to the originals, including ...
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  • Brain Injuries And Sports: NASCAR Crashes Into The Fray

    Traumatic brain injuries are getting a lot of attention these days and much of the scrutiny has focused on football. But last week Dale Earnhardt, Jr., bowed out of two upcoming races to take time to recover from a concussion that he received in a 25-car wreck on October 7, 2012. This can only bring more focus on the dangers of brain injuries and sports. In a big sense, Earnhardt's injury is ...
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  • Risks Linked To Spinal Injections Prior To Meningitis Outbreak

    Since the outbreak of meningitis, there have been 19 reported deaths, and over 200 cases linked to contaminated spinal steroid injections. However, spinal injections have been linked to severe complications, such as nerve damage, paralysis and stroke, prior to the outbreak. From 2000 to 2010, Medicare records show an increase of nearly 160 percent in the number of injections, despite the ...
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  • Toddler Leads Vision-Loss Fundraiser To Raise ROP Awareness

    A 2-year-old girl and her father kicked off a vision-loss awareness relay race last week. The girl, nicknamed "Mighty Morgan" has already had 14 surgeries to try to repair her vision after she was born four months early. While still in neonatal intensive care, the girl began developing symptoms of retinopathy of prematurity. Retinopathy of prematurity (ROP) is a leading cause of blindness and ...
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  • Body Found At Collapsed Garage Site Might Be Missing Worker

    After nearly a week of search efforts, the body of a man believed to be the missing worker was found at the site of the collapsed parking garage. The family of the Robert Budhoo received the news Monday afternoon, but there has been no official confirmation. The body was found deep within the rubble at the Miami Dade College Campus in Doral, and due to its location and the instability of the ...
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  • Miami Teen Dies From Bacterial Meningitis After Missed Diagnosis

    A local teen died from bacterial meningitis after a doctor allegedly failed to accurately diagnose him. Christopher Valdes, whose mom also had a close call with viral meningitis a couple of years ago, died Friday. The day before his death, Valdes felt ill and was taken to the Baptist Medical Plaza at Country Walk. The teen was suffering from nausea, stiff joints and low blood pressure. Despite his ...
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  • 15 Wrongful Deaths In 15 States. Now Two More Bad Drugs.

    The New England Compounding Center (NECC) is already at the heart of at least 12 wrongful deaths of unsuspecting back pain patients across the country; the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) recently announced that two more drugs from the compounding center might also carry the fungus that has triggered a fungal meningitis outbreak across the country. Triamcinolone acetonide and Aspergillus ...
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  • Miami Dade College Parking Garage Collapse: Construction Error?

    The cause behind the collapse of a parking garage at a Miami Dade College campus in Doral won't be known for months, but experts believe the problem stems from the use of pre-fabricated parts assembled on site. Experts believe investigators will look into construction error before faulty design as the cause of the collapse. Others believe a defect in a concrete piece could also be behind the ...
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  • Search Continues For Man Trapped Beneath Collapsed Parking Garage

    Almost a week after a parking garage collapsed at a Miami Dade College campus, workers are still searching for a man trapped beneath the rubble. The family of Robert Budhoo, an electrician with Stryker Electric, has been at the Doral campus every day, and is frustrated by the lack of urgency they feel in rescue efforts, as the size of rescue teams have dwindled since the collapse. The family also ...
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  • Whistleblowers Saving Government Billions Of Dollars

    Whistleblowers are helping state and local governments bring in billions of dollars by exposing fraud and other illegal activities. According to a recent study from the Public Citizen, whistleblowers have led to $6.6 billion in penalties against drug manufacturers, particularly for fraudulently charging high prices in the Medicaid program. The study also revealed that the government has recovered ...
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  • Up To 13,000 May Have Been Infected With Fungal Meningitis

    Already, 119 people have been diagnosed with fungal meningitis or suffered a stroke after being injected with tainted steroids produced in Framingham, Massachusetts. Of those, 11 have died, at least one right here in Florida. The Florida victim of the tainted, dangerous drug was a 70-year-old man who passed away in July. At the time, it was yet unknown that the steroid injection was contaminated ...
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  • Compounding Pharmacy To Blame For Meningitis Outbreak

    A rare form of fungal meningitis has swept through several states, infecting 137 and killing 12. The outbreak of meningitis was caused by steroid back injections contaminated with fungus, and an estimated 13,000 people are at risk. The pharmacy that supplied the steroids, the New England Compounding Center of Framingham, has issued a recall of over 17,000 vials that reached 75 clinics across 23 ...
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  • Drunk Driving Spree Ends In Fatal Crash

    A 22-year-old man drunkenly crashed twice before a third wreck killed a 91-year-old Florida man and hospitalized another person. Police said that the driver's blood alcohol content was nearly three times the legal limit. The fatal car accident occurred around 11:30 on a Sunday morning. Witnesses reported seeing a car crash into several parked vehicles at an apartment complex. The driver did not ...
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  • Study Raises Concerns With Frequency Of Dangerous Hospital Errors

    Surgery can be a scary idea under any circumstances. A new hospital safety study, however, suggests that surgery patients are at higher risk of medical errors than many people expect. The study, conducted over two years at a major teaching hospital in London, concluded that patients suffered an average of four or five mistakes after each surgery. Of those, around 50 percent were harmful. The study ...
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  • Stay Away From The Water: Fountain Allegedly Spread Legionnaire's

    When a property owner becomes liable for a water-related hazard, it is usually because of a slip-and-fall or drowning accident. In a new wrongful death suit, however, a Florida victim's family members allege that a hotel's negligence led to a fatal Legionnaire's disease outbreak. The disease apparently came from a fountain located in the hotel's main lobby. The suit is based on a premises ...
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  • Traffic Fatalities Rose More In 2012 Than Any Year Since 1975

    The federal government reported last week that traffic fatality numbers are on the rise. In the first six months of 2012, 9 percent more people died in motor vehicle accidents . Compared to data going back to 1975, this increase is the highest on record. A 9 percent increase over last year's numbers means that vehicle crashes killed around 16,290 people in the first half of 2012. While this is the ...
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