The only treatment to date for the MERS virus is supportive care to help relieve symptoms. This is similar to the treatment of the SARS virus. Patients with MERS often require fluids, oxygen, fever-lowering medication, supplemental nutrition and care for secondary bacterial infections. Some individuals with MERS have suffered kidney failure and required dialysis.
As in the U.S., there's much soul searching about whether the country is getting as much bang for the bucks it spends. Does the quality of care match the country's outlay? A number of studies, including the latest international comparison from The Commonwealth Fund, show that Canada and the U.S. both fall down on several dimensions of care.
October also brings in a day that commemorates what should be a part of our daily activities but for many is either forgotten or simply ignored: handwashing. It's not a surprise as handwashing is not considered -- other than perhaps in the public health field -- to be an incredibly important part of living.
Sticky situation: In our daily lives, from work to the community and even within our very own family, we regularly receive news that may make us uncomfortable and will at times, leave us speechless and paralyzed. To enlighten you, and hopefully prepare you for what to say and do, here are some suggestions.
It's easier, more effective, and cheaper to let healthy bodies fight off disease and infections than to weaken those defence mechanisms and then compensate for them medically. If we want a stable health system, we must put more resources into reducing pollution and environmental degradation and creating a way of life that keeps bodies and minds happy and in good health.
According to an article in the New York Times, "emerging diseases have quadrupled in the last half-century." The increase is mainly due to human encroachment into and destruction of wildlife habitat. For example, one study concluded that a four per cent increase in Amazon deforestation led to a 50 per cent increase in malaria because mosquitoes, which transmit the disease, thrive in the cleared areas.