sb admin

Profile picture for user sb admin

Posts by this author

July 1, 2009
I'm teaching about opponent processes in color vision today and thought I'd share one of my favorite examples. This is how you use the human visual system to turn a black and white photo into color. Try it out:
July 1, 2009
by revere, cross-posted from Effect Measure Currently the only antiviral drugs effective against the swine flu (novel H1N1) virus are the two neuriminidase inhibitors, oseltamivir (trade name Tamiflu) and zanamivir (trade name Relenza). Relenza is in active form at the outset and cannot be…
June 30, 2009
Two recent studies add the knowledge about the risks associated with on-the-job exposure to pesticides. University of Ottowa researchers analyzed 35 studies on parental occupational exposure to pesticides and childhood leukemia, and found that children whose mothers were exposed to pesticides at…
June 29, 2009
We are approaching day 160 of the Obama Administration, yet the Solicitor of Labor is not yet in place,  neither are the Assistant Secretaries for most other DOL agencies, including Employment Training Administration, MSHA, OSHA, VETS and Women's Bureau.   Attorney Patricia M. Smith was…
June 29, 2009
by revere, cross-posted from Effect Measure Crafting a message on swine flu is not easy, and it's easy to make missteps. I think CDC has gotten it pretty much right over the last two months, but not everyone has. We've written here since the beginning (some examples here and here) that describing…
June 26, 2009
The House is voting today on the American Clean Energy and Security Act (aka the Waxman-Markey bill); at 5:30pm, members of Congress are still taking the floor to speak for or against it. Head over to Grist's site to check out climatebill@twitter feed, or watch it on C-SPAN. The political…
June 25, 2009
A few recent items highlight programs and innovations that are helping improve health in developing countries: Journalist and Nieman Fellow Christine Gorman spent three months in Malawi to learn about a new program thatâs tackling the countryâs severe nursing shortage with higher pay and more…
June 24, 2009
by revere, cross-posted from Effect Measure For years those concerned about the consequences of an influenza pandemic from an exceptionally virulent flu virus, like A/H5N1 ("bird flu") have despaired about motivating business, government and neighbors to take it seriously enough to make serious…
June 23, 2009
I've often suspected that some federal agencies apply very broad definitions to the exemptions provided under the Freedom of Information Act (FOIA).  Now, thanks to one diligent journalist I can judge for myself whether the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) is an offender.  Ellen…
June 23, 2009
Miningâs environmental costs are high, but many residents of coal-mining communities support continued mining because they rely (directly or indirectly) on mining jobs. Now, reports Ken Ward Jr. of the Charleston Gazette, two researchers have put price tags on the economic costs and benefits of…
June 22, 2009
Friday (6/19) was the final day for participants from OSHA's public hearing on its proposed cranes and derricks rule to submit comments to the agency; by my count, seven organizations responded.  The Edison Electric Institute  offered the lengthiest document (94 pages), and it was peppered…
June 22, 2009
In Texas, a construction worker dies every two and a half days. In the Texas Observer, Melissa Del Bosque explains that itâs because of âlax enforcement of labor and safety regulations, too many overtime hours without rest breaks and a lack of safety training and equipment.â The Austin-based…
June 19, 2009
As we learned this week, Cal/OSHA and the OSH Appeals Board are in a state of disarray.  A daring group of state employees have raised their voices in protest (see "CalOSHA inspectors demand change") reminding us that dysfunction in their agency can translate into more injuries and…
June 19, 2009
by revere, cross-posted from Effect Measure Swine flu infection of health care workers (or as CDC refers to them, health care personnel or HCP) was of interest early in the pre-pandemic phase for at last two reasons. One was the obvious goal of estimating the risk to front line workers and…
June 18, 2009
It might seem obvious that having an entire town heavily contaminated with asbestos and hundreds of residents sickened by asbestos-related illnesses would constitute a public health emergency. Getting the federal government â specifically, the EPA â to actually declare a public health emergency in…
June 18, 2009
We wrote last month about the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Control's withdrawal of a report that omitted important information about the contamination of the Camp Lejeune military base in North Carolina - a move that seemed to indicate better prospects for the hundreds of former base…
June 17, 2009
A group of 47 H&S inspectors, supervisors and managers from California OSHA (Cal/OSHA) sent a pointed letter to the three-person OSH Appeals Board demanding they "cease and desist" their destructive practices.  This Appeals Board is equivalent to the OSH and MSH Review Commissions; it exists…
June 17, 2009
The 1,050 State public health experts who make up the Council of State and Territorial Epidemiologists (CSTE) is urging the States and CDC to adopt a new case definition for adults of elevated blood-lead levels (BLL) and to require laboratories to report ALL blood lead test results to NIOSH's …
June 17, 2009
The Charleston Gazette's Ken Ward Jr. reports that one of West Virginia's oldest and largest law firms, Jackson Kelly PLLC, is being sued for hiding evidence of coal miners' black lung disease.  Ward writes: "Earlier this year, an investigative panel of the state's Lawyer Disciplinary Board…
June 16, 2009
When discussing the costs of various healthcare reform proposals, itâs crucial to keep one thing in mind: doing nothing would be a financial disaster. If we donât change the rate at which healthcare costs are growing, total health spending is projected to double over the next 11 years, from an…
June 16, 2009
I'm in the middle of my qualification exams and ran across this interesting paper: Liu, Z Kersten, D Knill, DC Dissociating stimulus information from internal representation--a case study in object recognition. Vision research. 1999; 39(3): 603-12. However, I'm very confused about them calling the…
June 15, 2009
Home health workers who care for the elderly and disabled are an indispensable part of our healthcare workforce â but the Bush Administrationâs Department of Labor decided that they shouldnât be covered by the same wage and hour laws that protect most workers. The Associated Pressâs Sam Hananel…
June 15, 2009
by revere, cross-posted from Effect Measure One of the premier and earliest flu bloggers and co-founder of Flu Wiki, DemFromCT is also a doctor. Not a young doctor, either, although somewhat younger than I am (most people seem to be, these days). In our young professional days, the American…
June 12, 2009
The World Health Organization has officially declared that weâre at the start of an influenza pandemic. Nearly 30,000 cases of swine flu/H1N1 have been confirmed in 74 countries, and the virus is spreading easily among people in multiple regions of the world. North America has had the highest…
June 11, 2009
Less than two weeks ago, Dr. George Tiller, one of the few health providers who would still perform late-term abortions, was murdered. (Judith Warnerâs column on Dr. Tiller's important work is well worth a read.) Police arrested Scott Roeder of Kansas City, and the office manager of a Kansas City…
June 10, 2009
by revere, cross-posted from Effect Measure Listening to yesterday's press briefing with WHO's Dr. Keiji Fukuda (audio file here), several things seemed clear to me. The first is that everyone, WHO included, thinks a pandemic is well underway. Second, WHO's efforts to explain why they are not…
June 9, 2009
Updated below (6/13/09) The Associated Press and other news sources are reporting on an explosion today at a meat processing facility in Garner, NC.  Four workers are missing, at least 41 are injured, including several with very severe burns.  One worker reports: "I was picking up a piece of meat…
June 9, 2009
The last time we had a major health reform proposal was the Clinton administration, and it didnât go well. Ezra Klein explains the reasons: Instead of bringing members of Congress and stakeholders into the process early, the administration drafted a detailed proposal and then presented it to…
June 8, 2009
As the public health community mourns the loss of a great scientist and colleague, The Pump Handle would like to share some of what has been written about Kate Mahaffey.  Please leave your own remembrances in the comments section below. "I have known Kathryn as a colleague for more than a decade,…
June 8, 2009
by revere, cross-posted from Effect Measure There is no reason why a flu blogger-epidemiologist-physician's family should be immune to flu in the community. And it appears my family is not. My daughter has had a cough for the last few days and Friday night was suddenly seized by nausea, vomiting…