Acting HHS secretary Eric Hargan has declared the wildfires in California to be a public health emergency, while Gov. Jerry Brown (D) has declared a state of emergency in response to a hepatitis A outbreak, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from California, New York, and Texas.
- California: Two separate public health emergencies have been declared in the state of California. Acting HHS secretary Eric Hargan has declared a public health emergency in California over the wildfires, and California Gov. Jerry Brown (D) has declared a state of emergency in response to a hepatitis A outbreak, which has killed at least 17 people (Thielking, STAT News, 10/16).
- New York: Stony Brook University Hospital has announced that Ernest Baptiste will take over as CEO effective Nov. 27, succeeding L. Reuven Pasternak, who serves as both CEO and VP for the health system. Pasternak will remain on as VP. Baptiste currently serves as the CEO of NYC Health + Hospitals/Kings County in New York City and has previously served as COO of Durham Regional Hospital in North Carolina and EVP and COO of St. Francis Hospital in Wilmington, Delaware (Vaidya, Becker's Hospital Review, 10/13).
- Texas: Houston Methodist Hospital has received a $101 million donation from Rusty and Paula Walter to advance the hospital's neuroscience research and hire more physician researchers. The donation marks the largest philanthropic donation in its 98 years of existence. Rusty, owner of Walter Oil & Gas Corp. and a member of the hospital's board of directors, suffered a stroke in 2013 and was treated at Houston Methodist (Hixenbaugh, Houston Chronicle, 10/12).
How to avoid the flu when you fly
Traveling can lead to increased risk of catching a cold, with worn-out travelers exposing each other to potential illnesses. And one of the most common spots for disease transmission? Aboard an airplane, warns the University of Arizona's Chuck Gerba.
Download this infographic to learn about both the obvious (the seatback pocket) and less obvious (the armrest of an aisle seat) locations where germs on planes are rampant.