10 years but little progress on patient safety

By Maryn / June 8, 2009

Constant readers, I’ve been away for a week — trying to get my breath back now that the chaos of the novel H1N1/swine flu is diminishing — and so I’ve missed a lot of news. Over this week, I’ll try to catch you up on it. First up: Some of you know that, 10 years […]

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MRSA and H1N1 "swine" flu – still not a lot of evidence

By Maryn / May 29, 2009

Hello again, constant readers. It’s busy out there. The CDC said Wednesday that new infections with the novel H1N1 virus (Formerly Known As Swine Flu) may be trending down. Nevertheless, there is still a lot of rumor and speculation out there regarding what role MRSA pneumonia may have played in serious cases. The CDC commented […]

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MRSA in space

By Maryn / May 20, 2009

No, really — but not quite the way you think. The weekly geekfest that is Aviation Week and Space Technology reports that the payload of the space shuttle Atlantis includes a MRSA experiment. The goal is to investigate whether bacteria held in the microgravity of space become more virulent — this was done earlier with […]

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MRSA in the House of Lords — the silly, the serious

By Maryn / May 15, 2009

Thanks to constant reader Pat Gardiner, we have the transcript of the UK House of Lords discussion on community MRSA, called there PVL-MRSA after the toxin. (Go to the linked page, and click down to the time-mark 3.16 pm.) It’s encouraging to see some members of a government taking MRSA seriously. The members are asking […]

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While taking a flu break, a MRSA round-up

By Maryn / May 12, 2009

Constant readers, the H1N1 (Virus Formerly Known as Swine) Flu story remains a bit intense. I’ve missed a few MRSA stories over the past few days, so here is a round-up. First, though, if you’re curious about what the swine flu reaction says about our ability to handle a pandemic, you might take a look […]

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Quick update: Yes on bacterial pneumonia and new flu

By Maryn / May 7, 2009

Constant readers, I thought you;d like to know that there are a few more indications that secondary bacterial pneumonia (as discussed in this post the other day) does seem to be playing a role in the severe cases of the new flu. That’s according to this account of the WHO’s technical briefing from Wednesday, along […]

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MRSA strains crossing borders: US CA-MRSA to Italy

By Maryn / May 7, 2009

Swine flu continues to dominate the headlines, but other pathogens don’t read the papers. Case in point: New news about a US community strain being found and treated in a woman in Italy — better treated, as it turns out, than she was in California, where she was infected. In a new letter in Emerging […]

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Special bonus for disease-detection wonks

By Maryn / May 6, 2009

Constant readers: Some of you know that my first book, published five years ago, was a narrative and history of the CDC’s Epidemic Intelligence Service, the young, committed corps of MDs and PhDs who give up two years of their lives to serve on front-line outbreak SWAT teams. The EIS are very important right now, […]

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More on MRSA and the new flu

By Maryn / May 5, 2009

Constant readers, I admit it: I am a bad blogger. The wave of news on the novel H1N1 (AKA the Virus Formerly Known as Swine) has been just overwhelming. Apologies for disappearing. Out of the crashing surf, though, I picked up an interesting tidbit that speaks to our concerns about MRSA. Here’s some background: If […]

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For a moment, a different pathogen: swine flu

By Maryn / April 27, 2009

Constant readers, some of you know that I have a long history of covering pandemic flu (I wrote the first story in the US media about avian flu back in 1997, and covered pandemic preparations for years). I’ve had that somewhat on the back burner while I worked on this MRSA project and handled some […]

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