Health notes: 11 defibrillators will be donated by HeartBeat“HeartBeat Idol” was a fun event at Grandma’s Sports Garden in early June in which local celebrities went head-to-head — or vocal cords-to-vocal cords — in a karaoke challenge.
By: John Lundy, Duluth News Tribune
“HeartBeat Idol” was a fun event at Grandma’s Sports Garden in early June in which local celebrities went head-to-head — or vocal cords-to-vocal cords — in a karaoke challenge.
Now for the serious, potentially life-saving, results.
Nonprofit organizations, churches, municipalities and other public organizations throughout the Northland are invited to apply for one of 11 Automated External Defibrillators. The devices are available through a grant program sponsored by HeartBeat Northland, a consortium of 15 city councils, organizations and area emergency responders. That’s the organization that staged HeartBeat Idol, and raised $16,400 toward the cause.
Major financial contributors to the event included St. Luke’s Regional Heart Center and the Minnesota Resuscitation Consortium.
“Quick access to an AED in the event of cardiac arrest is one critical factor for the survival of a victim, along with (a) quick call to 911, early and continuous CPR, and transport to a hospital by trained responders,” said Judy Hanne Gonzalez, executive director of the Northland Chapter of the American Red Cross, in a news release.
More than 465,000 Americans die each year of sudden cardiac arrest, the news release said. That’s the leading cause of death in the U.S., according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
Grant applications and guidelines can be downloaded at www.redcrossmn.org/AED, or they can be requested from Gonzalez at the Northland Chapter, 2524 Maple Grove Road. The deadline is Aug. 31.
Get your shots
Bad news, kids. It’s not only time for back-to-school shopping. It also might be time for back-to-school shots.
According to the Office of Adolescent Health at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, children should get the following three vaccines at the age of 11 or 12:
The Tdap vaccination may be of particular interest, because this has been a bad year for whooping cough, on pace to be the worst in five decades, according to the Minnesota Department of Health.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported more than 17,000 cases of whooping cough nationally through July 12, with increases from a year ago in 37 states. The unfortunate leader is Wisconsin, with a 50.7 percent increase; Minnesota has had a 23.4 percent increase, fifth-highest among the states. The numbers: 3,169 cases in Wisconsin through July 16; 1,881 cases in Minnesota through July 20.
Where to go for vaccinations? The state Health Department suggests hospitals, doctor’s offices or medical clinics. Some urgent-care facilities, walk-in clinics and local health departments also offer vaccinations. More information is available from the state Health Department at (800) 657-3970.
Minnesota leads the nation in the use of electronic prescriptions, the state Department of Health reports.
The No. 1 ranking came in a survey done by an organization called Surescripts in its seventh-annual Safe-Rx Awards.
So what? Well, research shows that e-prescribing reduces medication errors by almost sevenfold in office practices, including “near elimination of errors due to illegible handwriting,” the Health Department explains in a news release.
What? Doctors have bad handwriting?
In 2011, 91 percent of Minnesota pharmacies, 68 percent of clinics, 39 percent of hospitals and 3 percent of nursing homes were e-prescribing, the news release said.
The White Earth Reservation is hosting its 12th annual Communities Collaborative Brain Development Conference next week at the Shooting Star Casino Hotel & Event Center in Mahnomen, Minn.
Keynote speakers on Wednesday will include Dr. Jack Shonkoff of the Harvard Center on the Developing Child. His work has brought national attention to the issue of brain development, said a White Earth news release.
Conference information is available at www.white
earthchildcare.com. The conference takes place on Wednesday and Thursday next week. The Minnesota Early Learning Council will meet from 1 to 4 p.m. on Tuesday at the same location.
Strong on coffee
So here’s good news for coffee-drinkers.
People who drink coffee lower their risk of dying from heart disease, stroke, diabetes, respiratory disease and infections, according to researchers at the National Institutes of Health. (On the other hand, the overall risk of dying from something, sooner or later, is still 100 percent.)
The researchers looked at data on 400,000 people ages 50 to 71, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services explained in a release. They didn’t find a difference between caffeinated or decaf.
What’s up with coffee? Figuring that out will take more research, said Dr. Neal Freedman, who participated in the study. No word on what their beverage of choice will be while doing that research.
The coffee study was published in the New England Journal of Medicine.