Medical Response & Claims Management Specialists

What is the Nipah Virus?

  The World Health Organization (WHO) has released the following definition and further information regarding the Nipah Virus Infection.   What is Nipah Virus? Nipah virus (NiV) is an emerging zoonotic virus (a virus transmitted to humans from animals). The natural host of the virus are fruit bats of the Pteropodidae Family, Pteropus genus. In infected people, Nipah virus, with a mortality rate of 40-70 percent, causes a range of illnesses from asymptomatic (subclinical) infection to acute respiratory illness and fatal encephalitis. NiV can also cause severe disease in animals such as pigs, resulting in significant economic losses for farmers.   What are the Symptoms of Nipah Virus in Humans? Influenza-like symptoms of fever, headaches, myalgia (muscle pain), vomiting and sore throat Dizziness, drowsiness, altered consciousness, and neurological signs that indicate acute encephalitis Some experience atypical pneumonia and severe respiratory problems, including acute respiratory distress Encephalitis and seizures progressing to coma within 24 to 48 hours How to treat Nipah? There is currently no cure or vaccine for Nipah.  Intensive supportive care is recommended to treat severe respiratory and neurologic complications.   Preventative measures to help reduce the risk of Nipah Virus infecting people:   Reducing the risk of bat-to-human transmission: Efforts to prevent transmission should first focus on decreasing bat access to date palm sap and to other fresh food products. Keeping bats away from sap collection sites with protective coverings (e.g., bamboo sap skirts) may be helpful. Freshly collected date palm juice should be boiled and fruits should be thoroughly washed and peeled before consumption. Reducing the risk of animal-to-human transmission: Gloves and other protective clothing should...

5 Tips for Healthy Holidays

  By: Kaitlyn Price   Tis the season for chilly weather, sniffles, long airport lineups, and lots of traffic. The holidays are a popular time to travel, visit friends and family and celebrate the coming year. Here’s how to survive!   Don’t forget about the little things! With flu season upon us, wash your hands often. The CDC has reported that only 1 in 5 people wash their hands, and of those 1 in 5 people, just 30% use The CDC recommends we wash our hands with soap and clean running water and lather for at least 20 seconds. Stay warm and pack layers when you travel. This is especially important for the elderly and children who can be more prone to illness when not kept warm. Wearing layers can help prevent the loss of body heat through convection. Keeping warm can help keep your immune system strong enough to fight off those pesky holiday bugs. Keep hydrated. Aircraft travel alone can dehydrate someone significantly. Aircrafts pull in air from the atmosphere during a flight, and then filter and heat it. The air then gets distributed throughout the cabin resulting in extremely low humidity levels – about 10-20%. Keeping fluids up while flying is extremely important and can help prevent some health Travel safe, travel smart. Give yourself lots of extra time when traveling during the holidays to avoid rushing and lowering your stress According to several popular travel articles, the worst days to travel this year will be December 22-24. According to AAA, approximately 103 million Americans will be traveling this holiday season. Eat healthily and stay active....

My First Month As A Flight Nurse

Blog post by: Kaitlyn Price, Chief Flight Nurse   I was working as an emergency/trauma RN for the past four years, and I wanted to gain some new experience and push my nursing career to the next level. I had been job hunting for a short while, trying to figure out what would be the best fit for me. I had done a little bit of flight nursing in Vancouver, BC on my days off from the hospital and thought it might be an interesting option to look into.   I sent my resume to Going Home Medical. I went in for an interview and soon after I received a phone call from the president asking me if I wanted to start right away and hop on a flight to Prague. I was sitting on an outbound plane headed to the Czech Republic that very same night. I had never been to that city and was quite excited. The medical transfer went very smoothly. It was interesting to see a hospital in a completely different part of the world.   Shortly after returning home from Prague, I was called out on a trip to Copenhagen, where I had to drive north into a small town in Sweden to bring a patient back home. Not long after, I was on my way to Glasgow. I had a day off to myself, and I decided to take a train north to Aberdeen and explore.   This was my first month as a flight nurse with Going Home Medical. I am confident I have found an incredible job with a great company...

Flu Fighters: What can travelers do to prevent the flu?

Influenza is common globally, and it is a contagious respiratory virus spread from person to person by coughing or sneezing. Individual symptoms include fever, cough, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, muscle or body aches, headache, and tiredness. Young children, elderly, and people with chronic health conditions are at risk for serious complications that include: pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, dehydration, worsening of chronic medical conditions, and death. The flu season lasts from October through May in the Northern Hemisphere and from April through September in the Southern Hemisphere. In the tropical countries, flu season can be spread year-round. Travelers in the Northern and Southern Hemispheres can be exposed to influenza outside of the months listed above, especially when traveling with a tourist group or on a cruise ship that includes people worldwide where influenza viruses are prevalent. What can travelers do to prevent the flu? Get an annual flu vaccine People who have not been vaccinated for the current season and are traveling abroad where influenza is prevalent should be vaccinated two weeks prior to traveling for immunity to develop Stop the spread of germs Avoid contact with other people while you are sick Wash your hands and use alcohol hand sanitizers If you feel sick and think you may have the flu, talk to your physician and discuss your travel plans If you have influenza, administer antiviral drugs ANTIVIRALS DIFFER FROM ANTIBIOTICS! To learn how Going Home Medical can help you prepare a medical travel plan, please visit:...

Six Tick Borne Diseases

Six tick borne diseases as listed by World Health Organization Crimean-Congo Haemorrhagic Fever The Crimean-Congo hemorrhagic fever (CCHF) virus causes severe viral hemorrhagic fever outbreaks Outbreaks have a case fatality rate of up to 40% Risk to travelers – no vaccine is available, avoid countries where CCHF is endemic Location – CCHF is endemic in Africa, the Balkans, the Middle East and Asia, and in countries south of the 50th parallel north Lyme Disease Infection occurs through the bite of an infected tick of the genus Ixodes Risk to travelers – generally low except for visitors to rural areas, particularly campers and hikers, in countries or regions at risk Location – forested areas of Asia, north-western, central and eastern Europe, Canada and the USA Relapsing Fever (Borreliosis) Transmitted through tick bites with symptoms developing 15 days after bite Risk to travelers – avoid risk areas such as forests and wetlands during months of April to October Location – Africa, Spain, Saudi Arabia, Asia, and certain areas of Canada and the western United States Rickettsial Diseases (Spotted Fever and Q Fever) Tickborne spotted fever rickettsioses are the most frequently reported travel-associated rickettsial infections Symptoms appear 5 to 14 days after bite Risk to travelers – all age groups are at risk for rickettsial infections during both short and long-term travel to endemic areas Location – tick-borne rickettsial diseases occur worldwide Tick-borne Encephalitis Viral infectious disease involving the central nervous system The disease is incurable Risk to travelers – vaccinations are recommended for high-risk activities such as working or camping in forested areas or farmland, adventure travel or living in countries where the disease is present for an...

Know Before You Go: Zika Virus

What is Zika? Zika is a virus transmitted by Aedes mosquito, which also transmits Dengue and Chikungunga Zika can cause: mild fever, headache, body and joint aches, skin rash Within 2-7 days people become symptomatic Preventive measures travellers should take: Cover skin/long sleeves, insect repellent Screens in windows and doors and mosquito netting Empty containers of water To prepare a medical plan for your travel visit:...

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