In an unfortunate incident last week, a Toledo, Ohio medical center told a woman that her mother, who had come in for a routine tooth extraction, had gone into cardiac arrest and was on life support.
Andrea Stebbins brought her mother, Belinda Helton, to Mercy St. Vincent’s Medical Center on February 3, 2016 for the procedure. As she waited for her mother to get out of surgery, a doctor and a nurse came out to tell her that her mother had gone into cardiac arrest and was on life support, Omaha television station WOWT reports. They advised her to notify family members immediately.
The notification was a mistake, but before the doctor realized the error and returned to tell Stebbins, she had given the bad news to her 87-year-old grandmother. “[The doctor] came back and told me he was extremely sorry that there was a mistake made,” said Stebbins, “and that he indeed gave me information in regards to another patient.” Belinda Helton’s procedure had gone well and she was in recovery.
Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center issued a statement that said, “The compassionate and high quality care we provide to our patients and their families is of the utmost priority to all of us at Mercy. Yesterday afternoon, a family who was waiting for a loved one at Mercy St. Vincent Medical Center, was incorrectly notified about the condition of their loved one. The clinical team recognized the error within minutes and the notification was corrected.” Mercy St. Vincent offered an apology to the family and said it was “reviewing notification protocols to prevent such occurrences moving forward,” WOWT reports.
Stebbins said that her mother is recovering well from her procedure. Stebbins said she hopes that sharing what she describes as a “very traumatizing” experience, another family does not have to go through a similar situation, according to WOWT.
In documents filed with the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) last week, Continental Automotive Systems reports a potentially dangerous problem with its airbags that can lead to the failure of the airbags to deploy or to deployment without a crash.
Continental Automotive Systems says moisture can get inside the airbag control computers, causing the power supplies to corrode and fail, The Associated Press (AP) reports. Continue reading
The city of Flint, Michigan is not alone in facing drinking-water contamination issues, New York Times reports. After budget cuts led to a switch in water source, as many as 8,000 children under age 6 have been exposed to dangerously high levels of lead. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there is no safe level of lead in children. Even in small amounts, lead exposure can lead to developmental problems.
According to NYT, issues with tainted drinking-water are not limited to Flint, which may be the site of the most serious contamination in the country. Last year, the town of Sebring, Ohio found unsafe levels of lead in the drinking water. The lead contamination stemmed from the fact that workers stopped adding a chemical that prevents corrosion in lead water pipes. City officials did not take action to protect pregnant women or children for five months. Lead contamination also occurred in Washington, D.C. after the city changed methods for disinfecting its drinking water. In 2001, tap water in homes contained as much as 20 times the federally approved level of lead. Residents did not know about the issue for three years. When they were finally notified, officials made repairs that ultimately only prolonged the lead exposure. Continue reading
Fresh Express Incorporated has recalled some 32-ounce packages of Fresh Express Chopped Romaine because they may contain undeclared allergens.
Fresh Express representatives are coordinating with stores to remove the recalled product from store shelves. No other Fresh Express products are included in this recall, according to the company’s recall announcement. No illnesses have been reported. Continue reading
A proposed class action against a company that touts its coconut oil as “healthy,” claims the company misleads consumers into thinking the product is good for them when it is almost entirely made up of saturated fat.
A California woman claims that labels on Carrington Tea Co. LLC’s Carrington Farms extra virgin coconut oil and coconut cooking oil have deceived consumers since the products came on the market in 2013, Law360 reports. The label includes health claims that violate U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) guidelines and the state’s False Advertising Law, Unfair Competition Law, and Consumer Legal Remedies Act, the lawsuit alleges. Continue reading
A construction crane with a boom nearly 600 feet high killed a 38-year-old pedestrian when it crashed onto Worth Street on Friday, February 5. David Wichs was killed on his way to work and three others were injured by the falling crane.
Workers were attempting to secure the crane’s tower during a snowstorm with winds of about 20 mph., the New York Post reports. The collapse occurred just before 8:30 a.m. Continue reading
Honda has added an additional 2.23 million vehicles in the U.S. to the list of vehicles recalled over Takata airbags that could explode.
On Wednesday, February 2, the automaker said that certain Honda and Acura vehicles from the 2005 to 2016 model years are being recalled to replace the Takata-manufactured driver-side front airbag inflators, USA Today reports. Continue reading
A new study published online in the journal Chest, says New York firefighters exposed to toxins in the 9/11 World Trade Center attacks lost, on average, 10 percent of lung function after 9/11, and they experienced little recovery over the first six years.
The article’s authors—public health, pulmonary, and epidemiology experts—say that follow-up into the next decade allowed them to determine the “longer-term exposure effects and the roles of cigarette-smoking and cessation on lung function trajectories.”Now, 13 years after the 9/11 attacks, most firefighters continue to show a lack of lung function recovery, the authors say.
The advocacy group Citizens for Extension of the Zadroga Act reports that more than 200 New York police officers and firefighters have died from 9/11-related illnesses and about 33,000 responders and survivors suffer a variety of ailments, including chronic respiratory conditions and gastric reflux. Medical researchers have identified more than 50 types of cancer linked to toxins released when the towers fell. While some responders and survivors became ill soon after 9/11, many of the 9/11-related illnesses took years to emerge. Tens of thousands of people were exposed to toxins and health experts expect illnesses to continue to develop.
The James Zadroga 9/11 Health and Compensation Act, reauthorized by Congress in December 2015, provides health care, health monitoring, and compensation to 9/11 responders and survivors who suffer illnesses and injuries related to the September 11, 2001 attacks. These programs are crucial for many responders suffering from serious medical conditions as a result of toxic exposures on 9/11 and during the subsequent cleanup and recovery operations.
The reauthorization extends the World Trade Center Health Program, which had expired in October 2015, through 2090, the New York Daily News reported. The Victim Compensation Fund would have expired in October 2016, but the reauthorization extends the fund for another five years to provide benefits to first responders too sick to work. To be eligible to file a claim, individuals must register with the VCF by the applicable deadline, and the registration deadline depends on the individual claimant’s circumstances. The new deadline for filing the claim itself (and all supporting documents) is December 18, 2020.
The extension of the Zadroga Act was the work of a bipartisan group of legislators, led by members of the New York congressional delegation, including Senators Kirsten Gillibrand and Charles Schumer, and Reps. Caroline Maloney and Gerald Nadler. Gillibrand was a leader in passage of the original legislation in 2010 and she led the coalition working for the extension. She called the Zadroga reauthorization, her “proudest day in Washington.”
A lawsuit alleging Johnson & Johnson talcum powder caused ovarian cancer is going to trial in Saint Louis Missouri state court. Talcum powder is most commonly found in baby powder to prevent and treat rashes. Some women also use talcum powder for personal hygiene; products such as J&J’s “Shower to Shower” is marketed for this purpose. There are some 1,200 lawsuits nationwide alleging that talcum powder led to ovarian cancer.
The trial, which is expected to last two to three weeks, is considering a lawsuit filed on behalf of woman who died of ovarian cancer last year at the age of 62. Her lawsuit alleges J&J knew its product could increase the risk of ovarian cancer but failed to warn the public. Plaintiffs claim internal documents show J&J continued to market talcum powder for feminine hygiene despite being aware of studies linking it to ovarian cancer. The lawsuit does not contend that the talcum powder was the only cause of cancer; it alleges it was a contributing factor. Continue reading