HYGIENE

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Is It OK to Question Your Doctor About Hand Washing?

If you ever suspect that your doctor, nurse or other health-care provider forgot to use the hand sanitizer, by all means raise the question. But, in reality, most patients in your situation are reluctant to do so. Surveys going back almost a decade found that Ontario patients didn't want to be placed in the role of a police officer to ensure that doctors and nurses wash their hands.
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New Year, New Flu, New Troubles

It's that time of year again: flu season. Once again, the influenza virus has showed up in Canada threatening up to 20 per cent of the population. For the vaccine to be effective, it has to perfectly mimic the viruses in nature. This is actually harder than one might think as influenza is the master of evolutionary disguise.
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Why You Shouldn't Worry About Using Public Toilets

A closer inspection of the bacterial species revealed only few pathogenic species. Of those, most were unable to survive over long periods of time. There was little to no risk for infection. As to the majority of bacteria found, they were common, and harmless, fecal and skin bacteria. Even high frequency use of a toilet could not develop pathogens in high enough levels to cause infection.
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Good C-DIFF Agents May Keep Our Homeland Safe

The date was 2004, and the setting a hospital in Quebec. When BI/NAP1/027 struck, the world was taken aback by an incredible ferocity that infected over 1,700 people and left hundreds dead. But this was only the beginning as TCD and BI/NAP1/027 have since spread worldwide. But what can be done to stop this rogue germ agent?
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How Pneumonia Happens: A Strange Case of Friend to Foe

Anyone who has suffered from pneumonia -- or witnessed a loved one battle with the illness -- knows how scary the episode can be. The lungs fill with fluid, breathing becomes difficult and at times impossible, requiring hospitalization, and without proper treatment, the consequences can be dire. Like many illnesses, this too can be traced back to a germ.