Monthly Archives: October 2007

A Responsible approach to MRSA

By JEFFERSON WEAVER
Staff Writer

Health
officials hope encouraging better hygiene and following strict
protocols can prevent the MRSA virus from becoming more of a problem in
Columbus County.

Columbus Regional already has close
enforcement of hand hygiene and patient isolation rules to avoid spread
of the drug-resistant bug. The infection has been blamed for several
deaths across the country in recent weeks, and is turning up in
previously unaffected portions of the population.

Methicillin-resistant
Staphylococcus aureus, better known as MRSA or simply staph, was
previously rare outside of hospitals and nursing homes, but in recent
years the virulent strain of MRSA has begun appearing in schools,
prisons, and the general population.

Miranda
Dufour, who is in charge of Infection Control and Employee Health at
Columbus Regional, said the hospital was already on a prevention
platform for the disease, which has no vaccination of cure.

“We’ve
been monitoring it closely,” Dufour said. “That’s been the case since
2005, when we became aware this could be a growing problem.”

Community-related
MRSA, according to the state Department of Health, can be treated with
medicines. Hospital-associated MRSA, the more virulent strain, is the
one doctors are worried about.

The disease became a
major concern to health officials in the 1990s, when people with no
connection to medical facilities began showing signs of HA-MRSA.

The
variation of the disease was noticed in 2005 in North Carolina. Day
care centers and schools have been the hardest hit by the disease,
which the Centers for Disease control estimates will kill more people
than the AIDS virus next year.

MRSA infections can appear as a spider or infected insect bite.

This
changes into a “red hot pimple,” Dufour said, and may be followed by
flu-like symptoms. The disease usually causes powerful infections to
the rest of the body.

MRSA is carried by many people who never exhibit symptoms or get sick.

“A lot of people can be colonized in their skin, nose or armpits,” Dufour said, “and never show an active infection.”
The disease is spread through skin-to-skin contact, or by extended
contact with articles that carry the germ, like towels, washcloths and
razors. MRSA can also be transmitted through the handles of shopping
carts, telephones and athletic equipment.

Dufour
said medical professionals are eyeing the bug because it is appearing
in greater numbers in the general population. The hospital has taken a
strong preventative stance on the disease, Dufour said.

“We
are concerned,” she said. “MRSA has always been there, especially in
hospitals and nursing homes, but when it started moving out into other
places it became even more serious.”

The hospital already checks nursing home or long-term care patients for MRSA, Dufour said.

If
a patient tests positive for the bug – either through an active case or
by being colonized, or carrying the disease – he or she is isolated
from other patients. Staff members also wear gowns and other protective
gear whenever they treat a colonized patient.

“We also
practice strict handwashing hygiene throughout the hospital,” Dufour
said, “and we encourage anyone visiting the hospital to do the same.”

Dispensers
with alcohol-based sanitizers are set up throughout the hospital, and
some members of the staff carry individual bottles.

It’s a habit Dufour said health officials encourage for the general population, too.

“You
can get the personal size bottles almost anywhere,” she said. “There
are small ones that fit perfectly in a child’s lunchbox or bookbag, and
everyone should have some available if they go to a store or other
public place where contact is likely.”

The germ commonly turns up in infants with skin abcesses, Dufour said, and children who spend time in close quarters.

The
state Department of Health has issued special advisories on MRSA for
schools and athletic organizations, since a 17-year-old Virginia youth
contracted the disease while playing high school sports.

Several members of a North Carolina high school team were also infected recently and are being treated.
Health clubs and gyms have also been put on notice, Dufour said,
because the germ can be spread through sweat from an infected person.

Others
at risk are people with poor general hygiene, anyone who lives in a
confined space, intravenous drug users, and people with chronic
illnesses such as renal failure or diabetes.

“If you’re in generally good health, “ Dufour said, “just keep an eye on anything suspicious.”

While there is no antibiotic that can treat the disease, Dufour said there is a simple way to prevent it.

“Good
handwashing hygiene is the best preventative,” she said. “Washing your
hands in warm soapy water for 15 to 20 seconds will eliminate much of
the danger.”

Dufour said there has been a rise in calls
to area doctors about the disease, especially from concerned parents
and people who notice insect bites.

“Not every bite or
pimple is MRSA,” Dufour said. Keep any suspicious wound clean, dry and
covered, Dufour said, and if there is no improvement in a few days,
“call your doctor.”

The wound will then be drained and
the infection tested to determine if the patient has staph, Dufour
said. Sometimes the problem can be treated with draining by a doctor.

The disease has historically struck older people, Dufour said, but the
new strain is increasingly taking aim at young people, especially
children.

To
avoid spreading the disease, the hospital has also asked that parents
not allow young children to crawl into hospital beds with patients.

“You
hate to have to say something like that,” Dufour said, “but if a person
is infected, and a little one crawls into bed with grandma – then you
have two infected people, not just one.”

Both the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and the state Department of Health have set up a special website on MRSA.

For more on diagnosing and preventing the spread of the disease, go to
the state site at http://www.epi.state.nc.us/epi/gcdc/ca_mrsa, or the federal
site at http://www.cdc.gov/ncidod/dhqp/ar_mrsa_ca_public.html.

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CAIR gloats over HLF mistrial but the celebration may be premature

 

Jihad Watch: CAIR gloats over HLF mistrial, but the celebration may be premature
The HLF verdict ended up as a mistrial because of jurors changing their minds after the initial verdict was made (were they paid off or threatened?). CAIR and those who were placed on trial are celebrating what they see as a victory, but as Jihad Watch observes, the victory celebration might be a little bit premature:

CAIR gloats over HLF mistrial, but the celebration may be premature

“War is deception” is, of course, a quote from Muhammad himself. “Motion For Retrial,” from Investor’s Business Daily (thanks to Doc Washburn):

Trail Of Terror: The Council on American-Islamic Relations is cheering a mistrial in a major terror case as a “stunning defeat” for the U.S. government. But the celebration may be premature.

Federal prosecutors say they’ll retry the case against leaders of the Holy Land Foundation, the nation’s largest Muslim charity, which they accused of funneling more than $12 million to Hamas terrorists.

CAIR, an unindicted co-conspirator in the case, also cheered a similar outcome in a federal case against Muslim activist Sami al-Arian in Florida. As in the Holy Land case, jurors deadlocked on several terror counts. But prosecutors threatened a retrial and al-Arian later pleaded guilty to lesser charges.

He was defended by the same lawyer defending one of the accused Holy Land leaders, Ghassan Elashi, who happens to also be a founding member of CAIR.

Barring plea bargains, the U.S. will narrow its charges and refile them — hopefully with a new judge. U.S. District Judge Joe Fish barred key evidence helping prosecutors prove willful intent to support terror on the part of defendants.

For example, he threw out a dozen documents seized by the Israeli government in raids of Hamas fronts that would have tied the Dallas-based charity closer to the terror group. Fish also allowed defendants to intimidate jurors.

Not long after the trial opened, after a morning of testimony by government witnesses, a visibly angry Elashi shouted and pointed as jurors exited the courtroom for lunch. The judge scolded him for the outburst — which included a rant about “a Zionist conspiracy” — but decided not to kick him out of the courtroom.

[…]

No doubt they’ll streamline their evidence, highlighting the more powerful exhibits, including:

• FBI wiretaps of a meeting in Philadelphia between Holy Land and Hamas big shots in which Holy Land’s director is overheard scheming to disguise payments to Hamas as charity, noting that “war is deception.”

Testimony from FBI agents that Holy Land flew Hamas clerics to the U.S. to help raise funds at mosques.

• Videos of a Holy Land defendant pretending to kill an Israeli during a Hamas fundraising skit held at one mosque.

• Key chains, videos and posters praising suicide bombers found inside the Hamas front “committees” that Holy Land helped bankroll.

The defendants also kept two sets of records at their Dallas offices — one in English, the other in Arabic — which they destroyed during the FBI’s probe.

Lawyers for the accused expect us to believe that all this suspicious activity was merely an attempt to help needy Palestinians with “vaccinations” and “rice.” Civil juries haven’t fallen for the subterfuge.

[…]

The evidence is clear. Now it’s up to the PC-plagued Justice Department to present it to jurors in a way that doesn’t make their eyes glaze over. Retry the case. Only this time, don’t try their patience.

4 infants died – the police case against the mother collapses because of inadmissible evidence

Has Justice been served for this mother, who had 4 children and lost all of them for an unknown reason?

 

CAROL Matthey entered the Supreme Court yesterday charged with murdering her four small children, one by one, over five years.

Police said she deliberately suffocated them, partly in order to sustain her troubled relationship with her husband, Stephen Matthey, the children’s father.

But yesterday, the criminal case against Mrs Matthey, who has always denied she harmed her children, collapsed.

Fifteen minutes after she arrived, Mrs Matthey left the court free, cheerfully accepting congratulations. In an extraordinary end to one of the most dramatic cases in Victorian legal history, prosecutors dropped the charges because much of the evidence gathered against her was ruled inadmissible.

A case that involved a three-year police investigation, thousands of pages of statements and 160 witnesses — and a case that dominated four years of Carol Matthey’s life — was suddenly over before it reached trial.

After she left the court, Mrs Matthey walked along William Street smiling, declining to answer reporters’ questions until this one: “Are you not guilty, Carol?”

“No,” she said firmly.

The reporter pointed out the double negative and asked for clarification. Did she mean she was innocent? “Yes,” she said, chuckling, amused at the misunderstanding. Then she walked off the public stage and into the rest of her life.

The Supreme Court case against Mrs Matthey ended as a result of pre-trial hearings before Justice John Coldrey. In a complex 94-page judgement on October 12, he found most of the proposed evidence inadmissible under the law.

In legal terms, this is not an acquittal. A defendant against whom charges are withdrawn is not protected by double jeopardy and, theoretically, faces the prospect of another trial if new evidence emerges.

Mrs Matthey, 27, of Geelong, lost four children between 1998 and 2003. Jacob was seven months old, Chloe nine weeks old, Joshua three months and Shania three years and four months. At her committal hearing in March 2006, Mrs Matthey’s defence argued there was no physical evidence of harm done to any of the children. Her lawyers said it was possible the children shared an as-yet-undiscovered gene that caused a medical condition, such as a fatal cardiac arrhythmia, that led to their deaths.

Police yesterday declined to comment. The acting director of public prosecutions, Jeremy Rapke, QC, said the case was irreparably damaged when the judge deemed inadmissible much of the medical evidence.

Initially, Jacob and Chloe Matthey were found to have died from Sudden Infant Death Syndrome, and Joshua of klebsiella septicaemia. A police investigation began after the death of Shania, who was too old to have died of SIDS, and for whom no cause of death could be found. At the committal hearing, experts acknowledged SIDS was a “diagnosis of exclusion” — the cause of death used for babies when no other cause can be found. They said there were often no forensic clues that would differentiate natural SIDS from deliberate suffocation.

This left much of the expert medical evidence at the committal heated and contradictory. Four local forensic pathologists strongly argued the autopsies revealed no scientific evidence of harm to any of the children.

But a pediatrician from South Australia who specialized in SIDS, Dr Susan Beal, and a forensic pediatric pathologist from the US, Dr Janice Ophoven, were equally vehement homicide was the most likely explanation.

They argued that “scientific” evidence included the lack of risk factors for SIDS in some of the children; the rarity of four such deaths in one family; the troubled marriage; and the fact that the children had experienced “ALTEs” — apparent life-threatening episodes in which they stopped breathing or were found unconscious.

Dr Beal said: “ALTEs are not a predictor for SIDS; they’re a predictor for (homicide).”

Justice Coldrey ruled out most of the evidence of these two witnesses.

The conflict between the experts meant the Crown case relied on other evidence, such as Mrs Matthey’s relationship with her husband and children.

Justice Coldrey said the Crown had submitted that, particularly at times of ALTEs or deaths among the children, the marriage was under severe strain.

“Moreover, it is asserted that the relationship of Mrs Matthey to her children, evinced by unwanted and unplanned pregnancies, mediocre parenting and indifference to their deaths, would enable a jury to infer they were the unfortunate pawns in this strategy to bolster her marital situation,” he wrote.

Justice Coldrey found there was no discernible link between the timing of marital crises and the ALTEs or the deaths: “There is no foundation for the contention that the killings were designed to win back Stephen Matthey’s love and affection.”

While there was evidence of poor mothering, the judge wrote, other reports painted a picture of a woman “who was a concerned, caring and loving mother during the children’s lives, and a distressed and grieving one when they died”.

Mrs Matthey’s lawyer, Paul Lacava, SC, said there were no winners in the case. “Mrs Matthey and her husband have lost their children and their sadness is profound and ongoing.

 

I find it very strange that it used to be accepted if one baby died from SIDS then there was a chance that further babies could die from SIDS, yet these two women “experts” on a mission claim that it is impossible and that the deaths must be homicide. If this mother did in fact kill her children, then both of these “experts” have done a lot of harm to the prosecution case. The local pathologists, who had more than likely examined the bodies of the babies indicated that there was no scientific evidence of harm being done to the children. Why then should the Prosecution be allowed to build a case based upon the evidence of “experts” who had not performed any forensic pathology on the children. The Judge did the right thing striking down the charges. Carol Matthey does not walk away from the court as a totally free woman, because she could be charged again, but at least justice is seen to be done when a case that is not based upon fact, but upon “experts with a mission” has been struck down because of the lack of real evidence that would lead to a conviction.

MRI urged for women at high risk of cancer

MRI urged for women at high risk of cancer – National – theage.com.au

Simone Filip is only 34, she has two sons, and has been diagnosed with breast cancer twice. This is an indication that for this young woman the cancer is genetic.

There is a real need for younger women who are in the high risk category to have annual check ups in order to detect any cancer when it is at a very early stage. So far Simone has survived both of her cancer scares, but if she is denied the opportunity to have frequent MRI check ups because of government red tape then her outlook could become quite grim.

The problem with breast cancer is that the earlier the diagnosis, then the more aggressive is the cancer. It is, I believe something that has been ignored for too long and it is because it is ignored that too many young women are dying as a result of the disease.

Already we have seen the deaths of some very young actresses from this disease, and Belinda Emmett was only the latest, and by no means the first one who was relatively young. She had a high enough profile to be able to bring the MSM on board to help spread the word that breast cancer also kills women under 40, not just over 50s.

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Iran wants to take over the Persian Gulf

I am behind in reading blog entries and blogging about the ones that interest me. This is another article from Gateway Pundit, that helps to interpret the motivations of Ahmanutjob. I have not heard anything further on this particular threat because Ahmanutjob seems to have some other fish to fry, especially with his repeated threats against Israel. However, the threat against UAE and Bahrain is yet another situation that needs to be monitored

In July, Iran lashed out at Persian Gulf states Bahrain and the UAE. An Iranian cleric claimed in an editorial that Bahrain was still part of Iran and Iranian News claimed that disputed islands in the Gulf belonged to Iran and not the UAE.

Bahrainis protested at the Iranian Embassy on Friday July 14th in the capital of Manama in response to an Iranian newspaper editorial claiming that Bahrain was a province that should be returned to Iran. (Bahrain Tribune)
In late July Lt. Col. (res.) Jonathan Dahoah-Halevi released an extensive report at the JCPA on the Iranian plans to take over the Arab Gulf States.
Today… Iranian expert Banafsheh Zand-Bonazzi sends a notice that this report by Jonathan Dahoah Halevi has been republished at Omedia. Here are a few paragraphs from that important report:

“The Persian Gulf States are afraid that Iran is casting its eye in their direct ion, and interested in using nuclear weapons to fulfill its dream of an Iranian Gulf.”
…Iran?s explanations have not stemmed the fears of the oil emirates, especially given the continued offensive against them and the allegations that they are illegitimate and collaborating with the United States? wishes to attack Iran. Undeterred by the condemnation, in another article in Kayhan on July 15 2007 headed ?What Is Wrong With You All?? Shariatmadari gave the Gulf States another tongue lashing pointedly avoiding reference to Bahrain as the State of Bahrain, calling it instead ?the island of Bahrain?. In this article as well, Shariatmadari, states that several decades earlier Bahrain had been a province of Iran although it had split from Iran following an agreement between the Shah Mohammad Reza Pahlavi and the American and British governments. He attacked the Gulf State rulers which deny ?absolute Iranian sovereignty over parts of recognized Iranian lands?, accusing them of being the mouthpiece for the United States and its allies, which are hoping to open a new front against Iran in the definitive struggle between Teheran and Washington.
Ali Ahmadi, an Iranian member of parliament and member of the parliamentary national security and foreign policy committee, also attacked the Gulf States for backing the GCC?s claim of sovereignty over the three islands. ?If these countries wish to raise these issues it will harm them the most?, said Ahmadi, noting that at various times periods, different Arab states, including Bahrain, had been part of Iran.
On this subject, the Reja News website identified with Iranian president Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, wrote that the Shiites in Bahrain represent 70% of the original inhabitants and that many speak Farsi, watch news, films, and series on Iranian channels and support Iranian football. The website said that Iran?s leaders had warned the Gulf States that their continued support of the UAR?s claims of sovereignty over the three islands, would resurrect Iran?s claims of sovereignty over Bahrain despite the fact that the Shah had relinquished Bahrain in 1971.
In an interview with Asharq Al Awsat, a former senior Iranian official said that Shariatmadari?s article reflects the views of Ali Khamenei who favors an aggressive foreign policy, he expressed in a speech some days ago in which he criticized former presidents Rafsanjani and Khatami for their policies which were defensive, not offensive. He lambasted Shariatmadari whose articles he claimed had unnecessarily complicated Iran?s relations with the Gulf States.

There’s more on the growing threats by Iran at the JCPA.

Nine days in Slotervaart – a Dutch commentary on the situation

I think that it is best to allow Georg Schreuder Hes speak since this is his commentary:

Nine days in Slotervaart

Immigrant youths turn to violence in Amsterdam

Commentary by Georg Schreuder Hes

19-10-2007

191007_slotervaart_Adam_225.jpg

Extra police on the street in the Slotervaart district of Amsterdam on Monday evening around 2300.
Photo: ANP/Evert Elsinga

It has been an unusually violent week for Amsterdam’s western
Slotervaart district. Cars were torched and youths clashed with police
on several consecutive nights after a 22-year-old ethnic Moroccan was
shot dead at a police station. He was killed by a policewoman he had
just stabbed a number of times. The riots that followed reminded
Amsterdam’s Chief Commissioner Bernard Welten of a major nightmare for
Western European cities: violence on a Parisian scale.

Every major town in the Netherlands has its share of so-called problem
youths, the type of violent adolescents who gang up to terrorise the
neighbourhood. Many of them are the children of migrant workers of
Moroccan descent who arrived in the Netherlands in the late 1960s and
early 1970s. The Dutch called them guest workers, the operative idea
being that they would return to their country of origin when they were
no longer needed. So nobody bothered to teach them Dutch, or much of
anything else for that matter. The guest workers had their wives come
over, but they, just like their husbands were not expected, or
encouraged, to integrate into Dutch society.

The next generation
However, very few went back. What they did do, much to the government’s
surprise, was have children. These children were raised in a strange
and often openly hostile environment, by parents who did not speak the
language and tried to instil moral values completely at odds with those
of the country they lived in. So, kids being kids, they began taking
advantage of the language gap by playing off their parents against
their teachers and pretending not to understand what any Dutch person
in a position of authority was saying.

The situation was substantially exacerbated by successive governments
that chose to ignore what people in the streets knew was an
increasingly serious problem. For years, political correctness dictated
that problems with migrant children could not be openly discussed.
Anybody trying to do so would be accused of blatant racism and
Islamophobia. So by the time the social climate began to change, in the
late 1990s, the situation had spun well and truly out of control.

Violent incidents
Slotervaart, a district in the west of Amsterdam, is not very different
from any other poor district in the Netherlands’ major cities. What
sets it apart from similar districts is a recent series of violent
incidents. On 11 October, a 16 year-old Moroccan boy died of a stab
wound he sustained in a fight with a 14-year-old classmate after the
two got into an argument over a pen. Only three days later, a disturbed
Moroccan man walked into the local police station and, without any
provocation, stabbed and seriously injured a police woman and one of
her colleagues. The man was shot dead by one of the officers.

In the following days, local Moroccan youths torched four cars in the
district and smashed the windows of the police station. Since then,
police have been intensively patrolling the district, which led to the
arrests of eight youths who were detained when officers found jerry
cans full of petrol in their vehicle. In the past few days, senior
police officers have been making comparisons with the riots that raged
in Paris in which more than 9,000 cars were torched two years ago.

Fundamental differences
However, both Interior Minister Guusje ter Horst and experts
on the Moroccan youth gangs issue say that the two situations are
fundamentally different. There is reportedly far more poverty,
unemployment and racism in the Paris suburbs.
Criminologist Frank van
Gemert from the Free University said in today’s de Volkskrant
that another major difference with the French situation lies in the
fact that the Dutch government is spending millions of euros on aid to
the Slotervaart district.
And police are in regular contact with
religious leaders and other representatives of the local community. Mr
Van Gemert says these youths may feel frustrated, but they can’t say
that they are being abandoned by the government.


His argument that they are simply using the recent incidents as an
excuse to raise hell is born out by police reports showing that they
are dealing with a limited group of around 35 youths, all of them
repeat offenders.
In NRC.Next,
district council chair Ahmed Marcouch says that the vandalism in his
district has nothing to do with emotions over the recent deaths:

“Emotions? That’s giving them way to much credit. These punks have no emotions for anyone.”

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Pope Benedict gives response to Muslim Scholars

BBC NEWS | Europe | Pope decries ‘religious’ violence

Pope Benedict XVI has urged world religious leaders not to allow God’s name to be used to justify violence.

He said: “religions must never become vehicles for hatred”. He also said that the Catholic Church would continue to seek dialogue to bridge the gap between the cultures:


“In a world wounded by conflicts, where violence is
justified in God’s name, it’s important to repeat that religion can
never become a vehicle of hatred, it can never be used in God’s name to
justify violence,” the Pope told the gathering.


“On the contrary, religions can and must offer precious
resources to build a peaceful humanity, because they speak about peace
in the heart of man.


“With respect for the differences between different
religions, we are all called to work for peace and an effective effort
to promote reconciliation between peoples.”

Pope Benedict XVI at mass in Naples

The Pope highlighted criminal violence in Naples


The Pope also made it clear that he will never budge on traditional Catholic teaching, that Catholicism alone is the one true faith.

Prior to the meeting of religious leaders the Pope celebrated an open air Mass in Naples, but there was a poor turnout for the Mass. Pope Benedict called for a profound renewal in the city of Naples, a city plagued by unemployment and a high crime rate. He singled out the activities of the local mafia of Naples, the organization that controls much of the city’s economy.


“How important it is to intensify efforts for a serious
strategy of prevention focusing on schools and the workplace and on
helping young people spend their free time,” the Pope said.


“Everyone must intervene against violence.”

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