Posts Tagged ‘#HealthNews’

DAVOS ALZHEIMER’S COLLABORATIVE ANNOUNCES EARLY DETECTION INNOVATION GRANTS

$4.5 Million in Grant Funding Expands New Alzheimer’s Early Detection and Healthcare System Preparedness Efforts

CARIBPR WIRE, GENEVA, SWITZERLAND, May 23, 2022 — The Davos Alzheimer’s Collaborative (DAC), the organization leading an unprecedented global response to Alzheimer’s disease, today announced the recipients of a grant program aiming for early detection of cognitive symptoms. The early detection grants total $4.5 Million from 8 countries across North America, Europe, Asia, and Africa.

The grants are an initiative of the DAC Healthcare System Preparedness Project, which aims to advance how healthcare systems worldwide detect, diagnose, treat, and care for people with or at risk for Alzheimer’s.

Grantees are located throughout the US, Brunei, Kenya, Germany, Japan, Canada, Cuba, and Armenia. Several grants will focus on expanding cognition screening and training for primary care providers. Others are harnessing innovative technologies to utilize optometrists and pharmacists. This will expand the pool of frontline workers available to screen for early detection, and reduce the unnecessary use of  specialist care. Another deploys a mobile clinic to offer direct clinical support or equip digital tablets to volunteer workers to rapidly improve detection  rates.

According to George Vradenburg, Founding Chairman of the Board, Davos Alzheimer’s Collaborative, “Each grant will bring unique and measurable benefits to its local health system and community and, through DAC’s global learning network, will also spread their learnings broadly around the world. Finding new and innovative ways to advance early detection is paramount to improving healthcare systems’ abilities to provide better care today, and to prepare for the future availability of treatments.”

The grant application process was extensive, with DAC receiving 76 responses from 21 countries in two months. A diverse panel of experts, including a family member of an Alzheimer’s patient living with the disease, served as an independent review committee for these grants:

  • Tarun Dua (Global) – World Health Organization
  • Wendy Weidner (Global) – Alzheimer’s Disease International
  • Ricardo Allegri (Argentina) – University of Buenos Aires & World Dementia Council
  • Chirine Chehab (Lebanon) – American University Hospital of Beirut
  • Lori Frank (United States) – RAND Corporation & New York Academy of Medicines
  • Ryoji Noritake (Japan) – Health and Global Policy Institute
  • Terry Fulmer (United States) – John A. Hartford Foundation
  • Chandresh Harjivan (Canada) – Family member of an Alzheimer’s patient

“Early detection of cognitive decline is critical for patients and families and I am excited to see the Davos Alzheimer’s Collaborative tackling this challenge with their Health System Preparedness Initiative,” says Chandresh Harjivan, a family member of an Alzheimer’s patient. “I was honored to be asked to be part of such an esteemed review committee and am very happy that families living with the disease were part of the evaluation process.”

A summary of each grant can be found below.

About the Davos Alzheimer’s Collaborative

Launched at the World Economic Forum’s 2021 meeting on The Davos Agenda, The Davos Alzheimer’s Collaborative is a multi-stakeholder partnership committed to aligning stakeholders with a new vision for our collective global response against the challenges Alzheimer’s presents to patients, caregivers and healthcare infrastructures. Convened by The World Economic Forum and The Global CEO Initiative on Alzheimer’s Disease (CEOi) and fueled by a mission of service to the estimated 150 million families and half a billion people inevitably impacted by this disease by 2050, DAC is a collaborative for the benefit of all people, in all places.

About DAC’s Healthcare System Preparedness Project

DAC’s Healthcare System Preparedness Project (DAC-SP) is funding innovative approaches that measurably increase rates of cognitive screening, early detection and accurate diagnosis of Alzheimer’s through pilot projects and early detection grants. The pilot projects are: AdventHealth Central Florida, FL, USA; Municipality of Volta Redonda, State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Alzheimer Scotland; University of the West Indies (UWI), Caribbean Institute for Health Research, Jamaica; Kobe University, Japan; INGER/National Institute of Geriatrics, Mexico; and, Indiana University School of Medicine/Indiana University Health, IN, USA. These initiatives are incorporated into DAC Learning Labs, a network of governments and public health and healthcare system leaders, to share best practices that can be scaled globally.

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***PLEASE NOTE: Click here to view a recorded discussion with some of the grant recipients, in which over 500 global leaders from 53 countries tuned in to learn about early detection. Click here to be kept informed about updated information regarding the DAC initiative.

Davos Alzheimer’s Collaborative Early Detection Grants

Toronto Memory Program and RetiSpec (Canada)

This project implements the world’s first screening model that leverages collaboration between optometry and a local Alzheimer Society chapter to enable accessible identification of individuals at risk for Alzheimer’s disease and referral to a qualified clinician, facilitating a faster diagnosis. The two community-based entry points include: (1) optometry clinics, where individuals can receive a non-invasive RetiSpec retinal scan for early detection of Alzheimer’s disease; and (2) the Alzheimer Society of Toronto, where individuals can undergo cognitive assessment.

Ludwig-Maximillans University (Germany)

Partners with two Universities, a health and social care charity, and three industry partners to conduct three screening types on seniors in Germany. This study will identify the best screening method by offering digital cognitive assessments, SCD questionnaire screening, and blood AD biomarkers testing to different groups. This study will also generate a patient registry to enroll patients in the global cohort and clinical trials workstreams, establish a fluid biobank, and train Artificial Intelligence diagnostic systems to better analyze speech patterns.

University of Havana (Cuba)

Provides a two-month training to primary care providers to integrate tablet based cognitive assessments Brain Health Assessment (BHA). The care provider will be assisted by informants, meaning a family-member or other person close to the patient, to help primary care providers determine if a dementia diagnosis is warranted.

Avant Institute (US – Multiple States)

This project implements Cognivue Clarity, a self-administered 10-minute cognitive performance screening tool, to increase access to digital cognitive screening assessments in 20-30 Community Pharmacy Enhanced Services Network (CPESN) pharmacy sites across rural, urban, and underserved communities throughout the United States. This project provides training and onboarding for pharmacies to use Cognivue to screen patients and evaluate the results to make further recommendations and referrals.

Africa Mental Health Research and Training Foundation (Kenya)

This project redeploys existing volunteer staff in the Strengthening Responses to Dementia in Developing Countries (STRiDE) project and trains community health workers to screen 2,400 people aged 60 and above. Workers are equipped with tablets to conduct the screening Instrument for Dementia (CSI-D) cognitive assessment and informant interview, word list recall task, and Euro-Dementia scale. Ultimately, results will inform health system policy and practices in Kenya.

Alzheimer’s Care Armenia (Armenia)

This cognitive screening education programs utilizes a van that has been outfitted as a multidisciplinary mobile clinic to offer educational programs and work with local clinical staff to screen for cognitive issues using the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MOCA). The program provides citizens who test positive for cognitive decline with healthcare resources and offers workshops to caregivers on providing support.

Advocate Aurora Health (US- Illinois)

This project aims to educate primary care providers on the importance of early cognitive screening and provide them with EPIC electronic health record-based digital testing tools to manage their patients efficiently. Clinicians get access to continuing education programming, eConsult support services, and participate in a monthly Project ECHO-type case conference to discuss topics on dementia.

Kobe City Pharmaceutical Association (Japan)

This project evaluates the value of pharmacy-based digital cognitive tests. It combines the cognitive test with a regular healthcare consultation to increase regular cognitive testing, the rate of early detection of cognitive decline, and timely and accurate diagnosis of dementia in local community-based healthcare system.

University of Washington (US- Washington)

This project expands the pilot site success of the Gerontological Society of America (GSA) Kickstart, Assess, Evaluate and Refer (KAER Toolkit, 2020 Edition) into a fully operational Cognition in Primary Care (CPC) protocol in seven new primary care clinics across the University of Washington. The CPC model includes provider education training and incorporates two validated tests, the Montreal Cognitive Assessment (MoCa) and the Ascertain Dementia 8-Item Informant Questionnaire (AD8), and a structured Cognitive Checklist. This model checks for comorbidities of dementia and provides guidance on follow-up counseling and referrals to community resources.

Demensia (Brunei)

This project will perform a pilot test of community screening and information in Senior Citizen Activity Centers, followed by a focus group discussion to select an initial paper-based cognitive assessment. The project will systematically involve communities at grassroots levels – senior citizen activity centres, engagement of village heads and community centres, targeting older people and those with dementia risk factors. Community links formed by the association are available for multisectoral support with this initiative. Other project activities also include training of field workers regarding community screening and cognitive assessment and training workshops for primary care (followed by relevant specialties).

American Academy of Physician Associates and Cleveland Clinic (US – Ohio)

Through partnership with The American Academy of Physician Assistants (AAPA), the Physician Associate (PA) Foundation, and Cleveland Clinic, this project develops cognitive assessment toolkit for non-specialist medical practitioners to be trained in administering screenings, interpreting results, communicating those results and offering additional provider and patient resources. The pilot implementation will be followed by outcomes reporting and dissemination of the toolkit to the network of PA schools and all Cleveland Clinic locations.

Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) (US – Massachusetts)

This project uses a systems redesign approach, working with approximately eight teams across a range of settings on testing and measuring the results of intervention strategies that increase assessment rates. IHI will build and operate a learning community to encourage peer learning among participating teams, provide guidance, and teach scientific improvement methods to facilitate the teams’ testing. Project outputs include a prototype set of interventions, implementation guidance, and an associated measurement set that will be ready to share and scale more widely.

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HWPL And Shincheonji Church Of Jesus Blood Donations Contribute To Stability Of Blood Supply

CaribPR Wire, WASHINGTON, D.C., Weds. May 11, 2022: Blood shortages due to COVID-19 are prevalent across the world. In January, the American Red Cross declared “a national blood crisis”, calling for an increase in donation. This blood crisis was called the worst shortage in over a decade, and it posed a significant risk to patient care.

In South Korea, 18,000 donors from Heavenly Culture, World Peace and Restoration of Light (HWPL) and Shincheonji Church of Jesus collaboratively donated blood during a two-week blood drive beginning April 18th. This joint blood drive was recorded as the largest single group blood donation in the country.

Namsun Cho, head of the Korean Red Cross Blood Services, said: “When the impact of the Omicron reached its peak, Shincheonji Church of Jesus launched a large scale of blood donation. It was like rain during a drought. We are surprised that the number of donors exceeded 6,000 in 3 days and more people participated. We appreciate their life-saving dedication.”

A donation of this magnitude is particularly impactful, as even a single blood donation can save up to three lives.

“They did a really great job in the life-sharing movement. This scale is equivalent to one army corps donating blood for a year. The number of blood donors is nearly four times the number in a normal day, a great help in overcoming the current blood supply crisis,” said an official from the Blood Services.

“We also appreciate the members of the Shincheonji Church of Jesus who participated in the nationwide plasma donation for the development of a treatment for COVID-19 back in 2020,” he added.

In South Korea, blood donation certificates are issued to blood donors that can be used for a reduced fee when paying for a future blood transfusion. All the donors of Shincheonji and HWPL gave their personal certificates to alleviate the financial burden of patients in need of a blood transfusion.

Efforts to aid in replenishing and protecting the blood supply were not limited to just South Korea, however. In Washington, DC, members of Shincheonji organized a blood drive to donate plasma and help accelerate the development of a cure for COVID-19. The campaign organized and actively participated in by the DC congregation of Shincheonji Church of Jesus included four mass blood and plasma drives. Drawing hundreds of donors, two of the blood and plasma drives were held at Children’s National Hospital and two were held at INOVA Hospital.

The heart of Shincheonji Church of Jesus is clearly shown in their dedication to continuing to help their surrounding communities despite their members having also suffered greatly during the pandemic. Aligned with the ideals of Shincheonji Church of Jesus, HWPL is carrying out long-term peace projects based on solidarity with civil society and international organizations in 193 countries. The priorities of both organizations make an ideal partnership as their members donate blood together, and this is evidenced by the impact of their joint effort.

EDITOR’S NOTE: A picture for use with this press release is available HERE

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Innova Medical Group Forms Strategic Partnership with Attomarker to Accelerate COVID Immunity Testing

PASADENA, Calif., May 5, 2022 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Innova Medical Group, Inc., a global health screening and diagnostic innovator and a world leader in the manufacturing and distribution of COVID-19 rapid tests, along with Attomarker, a nanophotonic biochemical testing company spun from the University of Exeter in the United Kingdom, announced today that the two companies have formed a strategic partnership to expedite immunity testing for COVID and other diseases globally.

Innova Medical Group Logo

Attomarker’s CE marked and UK Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) accredited rapid COVID Antibody Immunity Test assesses an individual’s antibody levels and estimates when they will likely be on the edge of immunity; providing vital insight for patients and public health officials to better inform the timing of vaccine shots and other protective measures.

The device is the first of its kind to measure an individual’s immune response to a COVID-19 vaccination, booster, infection – or a combination of the immune triggers and is currently available in clinics in the UK and the Caribbean.

As part of the partnership, Innova Medical Group made a minority investment in Attomarker and will become an official distributor of its products. Innova’s commercial capability in the rapid test space will help stimulate the development of Attomarker’s unique, multiplexed platform technology to achieve advances in rapid point-of-care diagnostics and personalized medicine.

“We are excited about working with the Attomarker team to help them accelerate growth,” said Daniel Elliott, CEO of Innova Medical Group. “Adding a much-needed immunity test into Innova’s COVID rapid test portfolio strengthens the pandemic management solution we offer to our global customers.”

Attomarker’s immunity testing technology measures multiple biomarkers in blood and saliva to provide a personal profile for up to 20 tests in seven minutes. Forthcoming tests include biomarkers for liver health, food allergies and fertility.

“Attomarker’s technology has the potential to change healthcare diagnosis and treatment with a portfolio of near-patient rapid diagnostics that would lead to more effective clinical intervention,” added Todd Malan, MD, Chief Medical Officer of Innova. “Most immediately, as protection from previous COVID infections and vaccinations decline and boosters continue to roll out, Attomarker’s science-based COVID-19 Antibody Immunity Test will be a valuable tool for individuals to make science based personalized healthcare decisions.”

Professor Andrew Shaw, CEO and founder of Attomarker said, ”This strategic alliance with Innova delivers a big boost to the Attomarker vision to a truly global perspective. We look forward to bringing more rapid solutions to help clinicians optimize interventions and enable people to take greater control over their own health.”

About Innova Medical Group
Innova Medical Group is a global health screening and diagnostic innovator driven to dramatically improve health outcomes worldwide with equitable, high-value testing solutions. Our strategic and iterative approach enables us to create, build and deploy myriad accessible tests customized to meet and empower the user at their point of need. www.innovamedgroup.com

About Attomarker Ltd
Attomarker Ltd is a MedTech company which was formed as a result of ground-breaking work conducted by Professor Andrew Shaw and his research group at the University of Exeter. The Attomarker vision is to personalise diagnostics and medicine by creating the world’s best, most efficient, affordable and sustainable diagnostics platforms for near patient, home testing and mail away use. Attomarker offers a complete rapid near-patient diagnostics system and has an exciting product pipeline. www.attomarker.com

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THE DAVOS ALZHEIMER’S COLLABORATIVE LAUNCHES INNOVATIVE EARLY DETECTION EFFORT

Seven Flagship Pilot Sites Aim to Measurably Increase Timely, Accurate Diagnosis of Alzheimer’s

  • Unique global collaboration to prepare health systems for a future with new Alzheimer’s treatments
  • Pioneering use of blood-based biomarkers with digital cognitive assessments in primary care
  • Innovative, culturally relevant methods that can scale in high, low-and middle-income countries

CARIBPR WIRE, New York, NY, May 3, 2022: The Davos Alzheimer’s Collaborative (DAC) today announced that people with or at risk of Alzheimer’s in six countries will soon have an opportunity to participate in a pilot program designed to increase access to early detection and diagnosis of the disease through the use of innovative new screening tools, which is an essential step to provide better care today, and to prepare for the future availability of treatments. DAC is launching seven pilot sites beginning this month in the US, Scotland, Jamaica, Japan, Mexico and Brazil.

“We are finding enormous appetite from healthcare systems around the world to prepare for future Alzheimer’s treatments, but first we must help healthcare systems adapt to early detection,” said George Vradenburg, Founding Chairman of the Board, Davos Alzheimer’s Collaborative, and Convener, The Global CEO Initiative on Alzheimer’s Disease. “By working directly with medical professionals, researchers, people at risk, and patients, these sites will utilize cutting-edge technology to change the way we deliver care, and help prepare healthcare systems to get the right treatments to the right patients at every stage of the disease.”

The pilot sites will use simple digital cognitive assessment tools to detect the signs of the disease early, and innovative blood biomarkers to help evaluate the cause of identified symptoms. The goal is to measurably increase rates of timely and accurate diagnosis to put people on the correct person-centered care pathways and mitigate the impact of Alzheimer’s disease on the individual and their family.

Digital cognitive assessments such as Linus Health’s Core Cognitive Evaluation, Cogstate’s Cognigram, and Cognivue’s Clarity will be made available to the pilot sites, reducing the need for broad neuropsychological testing, which is time consuming for patients and requires specialized physicians for administration. Digital cognitive assessments also mark a significant technological advance over paper-and-pencil tests in terms of reliability and objectivity. DAC program sites are training other healthcare professionals to administer the digital cognitive assessments. In some cases, it can be administered via a tablet in the patient’s home, marking a dramatic step forward in terms of access and ease-of-use.

The blood-based biomarker, known as the PrecivityAD™ test, is a technology developed by specialty diagnostics company, C2N (St. Louis, MO). The test will aid in the accurate diagnosis of Alzheimer’s disease, and reduce the need for expensive, hard-to-access, more advanced tests.

“We’re proud and excited to play a key role in DAC’s groundbreaking work to enable Alzheimer’s early detection on a global scale,” said Dr. Joel Braunstein, Co-Founder and CEO of C2N Diagnostics. “Harnessing the power of advanced diagnostics like our PrecivityAD test at DAC’s pilot sites will accelerate the fight to end Alzheimer’s.”

“DAC and the flagship pilot sites are driving new tools into the front lines of care. This is important to help patients today, and develop the data we need to better detect, treat and ultimately prevent this devastating disease,” said Stephen Friend, Founder and Chairman of the Board of Sage Bionetworks, Visiting Professor of Connected Medicine, and President 4YouandMe.

The pilot sites will provide localized care and treatment for individuals and develop models for broader healthcare systems to study and adopt. DAC Learning Labs, a network of governments, public health and healthcare system leaders, will provide a forum for sharing best practices that can be scaled globally.

About the Davos Alzheimer’s Collaborative

Launched at the World Economic Forum’s 2021 meeting on The Davos Agenda, The Davos Alzheimer’s Collaborative is a multi-stakeholder partnership committed to aligning stakeholders with a new vision for our collective global response against the challenges Alzheimer’s presents to patients, caregivers and healthcare infrastructures. Convened by The World Economic Forum and The Global CEO Initiative on Alzheimer’s Disease (CEOi) and fueled by a mission of service to the estimated 150 million families and half a billion people inevitably impacted by this disease by 2050, DAC is a collaborative for the benefit of all people, in all places.

About DAC’s Healthcare System Preparedness Project

DAC’s Healthcare System Preparedness Project is funding innovative approaches that measurably increase rates of cognitive screening, early detection and accurate diagnosis of Alzheimer’s. The pilot projects are: AdventHealth Central Florida, FL, USA; Municipality of Volta Redonda, State of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil; Alzheimer Scotland; University of the West Indies (UWI), Caribbean Institute for Health Research, Jamaica; Kobe University, Japan; INGER/National Institute of Geriatrics, Mexico; and, Indiana University School of Medicine/Indiana University Health, IN, USA. These initiatives are incorporated into DAC Learning Labs, a network of governments and public health and healthcare system leaders, to share best practices that can be scaled globally.

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NOTE: To join an upcoming Learning Lab such as Meeting of the DAC Learning Laboratory: Driving Early Detection Across Aging Societies, planned for May 17, 2022, click here. This Lab will feature DAC healthcare system pilot sites and demonstrate the first of many collaborative exchanges championed through DAC’s initiatives.

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ASOFARMA CENTRAL AMERICA AND THE CARIBBEAN, THROUGH ITS HEADQUARTERS ADIUM, REACHES AN IMPORTANT AGREEMENT WITH MODERNA INC. TO COLLABORATE IN THE DISTRIBUTION AND MARKETING OF VACCINES AGAINST COVID 19 IN THE REGION

Leading company in pharmaceutical innovation, based in our country, signs unprecedented agreement for the arrival of vaccines against COVID-19

PANAMA CITY, Feb. 23, 2022 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — ASOFARMA Central America and the Caribbean, through its parent company ADIUM, and Moderna Inc. reached a collaboration agreement for the distribution and commercialization in the region of SPIKEVAX, the vaccine developed by Moderna against SARS -CoV-2.

ASOFARMA Central America and the Caribbean is a leading pharmaceutical company in the region, which develops, produces and markets innovative products in therapeutic areas such as oncology, cardiology, central nervous system, diabetes and urology, among others.

As part of the agreement reached, ASOFARMA will collaborate with Moderna in the management of supply contracts already in force, as well as in vaccine registration processes, support for pharmacovigilance activities, continuing medical education, government affairs, marketing, and generation of new agreements that facilitate the availability of SPIKEVAX in the region.

“We are delighted to partner with Moderna to help patients, physicians and governments in this effort against COVID-19. Moderna is a leading company in the fight against the pandemic, and we are proud to have been chosen as partners for this task, providing all our experience and regional presence,” said Bernardo Girala, General Manager of ASOFARMA Central America and the Caribbean.

“This alliance confirms our purpose of providing the population with innovative treatments that help improve their quality of life and expand vaccination rates in the region,” Girala said.

Moderna Inc., a pioneer biotechnology company in the development of messenger RNA (mRNA) therapies and vaccines, has relied on ASOFARMA to make possible the arrival in the region of its vaccine against COVID 19, Spikevax.

Moderna’s mRNA platform is based on continuous advances in basic and applied mRNA science, delivery and manufacturing technology; which has allowed the development of therapies and vaccines for infectious diseases, immuno-oncology, rare diseases, cardiovascular diseases and autoimmune diseases.

With this new agreement reached by ASOFARMA, Moderna Inc. joins a list of international pharmaceutical and biotechnological research and development companies that ASOFARMA has represented in the region for more than twenty years.

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Caribbean Nationals Wanted For Heart Study

CaribPR Wire, FORT LAUDERDALE, FL, Sat. Jan. 22, 2022: A US study is putting the spotlight on Afro-Caribbean nationals who have heart disease, or have been diagnosed with Transthyretin Amyloid Cardiomyopathy, (ATTR-CM).

Afro-Caribbeans with lived experiences can now share their story via a national, qualitative study and get paid if they are considered a good candidate.

The national study is intended to deepen understanding of Afro-Caribbean people suffering heart issues, including heart failure and related health conditions, such as high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, etc.

“We are focused on the Afro-Caribbean community due to a higher prevalence of heart failure and specifically Transthyretin Amyloid Cardiomyopathy (ATTR-CM),” said Donna Fullerton, Research Partner at Now What. “It is well-established that the broader Black community is disproportionately affected by ATTR-CM, which is driving our attention here. We are looking to speak with, hear stories from, and understand the nuances within the Black community so that future communications and resources around disease awareness and treatment options will be culturally relevant and appropriate and hopefully lessen the health disparities we see today.”

To qualify, Afro-Caribbeans must be between ages 45-75, live in the US, and have been diagnosed with heart failure. Qualified participants will be paid $200 compensation for 2.5 hours of engagement, answering questions and completing activities over a computer or smartphone.

Participants who make the first round of the study, must also be open to take part in a follow-up 75-minute zoom call, for an additional $150.

If you feel you qualify, complete a short pre-qualification survey at: tinyurl.com/heartresearch before January 31st.

“The online exercises will ask people questions about their culture, their community, their thoughts about health and the healthcare system, and their experiences living with a heart condition,” added Fullerton. “All of our questions are designed to be respectful and empathetic – we only ask people to share what they are comfortable sharing and always respect people’s privacy.”

Heart diseases, such has coronary heart disease and heart failure, are more common in Blacks, than other ethnic groups — and so are the other cardiovascular diseases such as stroke and peripheral artery disease. Health issues like obesity, high blood pressure and diabetes can increase a person’s risk of heart failure. People of African heritage have higher rates of heart failure, hospitalization and death from the disease, according to national data.

Although care of patients with Heart Failure, HF, has improved in the past decade, important disparities in HF outcomes persist based on race/ethnicity. Recent scientific data shows that age-adjusted HF-related cardiovascular disease death rates are higher for Black patients, particularly among young Black men and women whose rates of death are 2.6- and 2.97-fold higher, respectively, than White men and women.

Similarly, the rate of HF hospitalization for Black men and women is nearly 2.5-fold higher when compared with Whites, with costs that are significantly higher in the first year after HF hospitalization.

While the relative rate of HF hospitalization has improved for other race/ethnic minorities, the disparity in HF hospitalization between Black and White patients has not decreased during the last decade.

The ultimate goal of this ongoing, targeted research is to learn from and speak with members of the Afro-Caribbean community so that future communications and resources around disease awareness and treatment options will be culturally relevant and appropriate, in order to hopefully lessen the health disparities currently.

EDITOR’S NOTE: A Photo for use with this story is available HERE

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The Future of Barbados Does Not Include Waste

An exciting and important project has been approved by the Government of Barbados; the project, a cooperation between the Sanitation Service Authority (SSA) and Barbadian company Prosource Limited, will completely transform residential waste collection in the country.

BRIDGETOWN, Barbados, May 7, 2021 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Waste management is a significant challenge for any society. An appropriate waste management strategy mitigates public health risks, contributes to sustained economic activity, and enhances Public welfare generally. While waste management is one of the least recognized public policy issues in the Caribbean, with the implementation of this project, Barbados will have a world-leading and technology-driven solution for the efficient collection of residential waste.

Minister of the Environment and National Beautification, Hon. Adrian Forde, M.P. observed, “The consequences of COVID 19, climate change and the ash fall caused by the recent eruption of the La Soufriere volcano only serves to underscore the importance of solid waste management and the need for efficient waste collection in Barbados. One of the most important tenets of sustainable development is a partnership, whether with private entities, community groups or individuals. The health and safety of our people are paramount in our environmental planning and development. This project will ensure our streets, beaches, ecosystems, wetlands and other areas of biodiversity are maintained. I am eagerly looking forward to this seamless transformation at SSA. My Friends, this is who we are.”

The project is a cooperation between the Sanitation Service Authority (SSA) and Barbadian company Prosource Limited, which will vastly improve the efficiency, reliability, and regularity of waste collections. Prosource Limited, whose expertise lies in the residential, commercial, and industrial waste sector, will provide and implement a fully managed end to end solution for the country. Prosource Limited is a part of the Innotech Group and has successfully completed similar projects in the region. In 2020, the Solid Waste Management Corporation of St. Kitts engaged the company to undertake an island-wide waste collection improvement project. David Tomlinson, Director of Prosource Limited, explained how it works for the people of Barbados. “Each household in Barbados will be provided, free of charge, with a standardized Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) enabled 65-gallon roll-out cart for general waste and an 18-gallon bin to be used for commingled recycling. In addition, all the SSA’s collection compactor trucks will be retrofitted with market-leading equipment for mechanically lifting the carts. The RFID readers installed on the trucks will track collection activity, improve collection efficiency, and the in-cab route optimization and management solution will also benefit drivers whilst reducing SSA’s operational cost. Once implemented, the residential waste collection methodology for Barbados will change from a manual system to a much more efficient and safer mechanical operation.” The solution includes a specialist software system capable of tracking, monitoring, and providing analytics for waste collection services and operations. It also allows for automated work orders and asset inventory management. Households will now also have a convenient way to dispose of recyclables using the new recyclable bin provided by the SSA.

It is not just the public who will benefit from this project, according to SSA Chairman Ramon Alleyne. “This project will not only allow our team to be better equipped with state-of-the-art tools and technology, we will be able to deliver a higher standard of service to the public. Just as importantly, it will ensure safer, healthier and better working conditions for SSA’s workers who provide this critical service to the country.”

A cleaner Barbados will also be a benefit for the island’s tourism promotion efforts. A modern and progressive way of keeping the island environmentally friendly and clean can be a competitive edge for a destination, especially with health being a paramount consideration of travelers in deciding where to visit. Chairman of Innotech Group, Anthony Da Silva, stated, “This groundbreaking initiative is a huge win for the island, both for our people and our key industries such as tourism. It is innovative projects such as these that will hopefully serve as a model for the region. We must not overlook the importance of waste management and recycling, and this public health project is evidence that we are serious about making the improvements and investments necessary.”

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Correction in Total COVID-19 Deaths for Latin American and Caribbean Nations

SEATTLE, June 25, 2020 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ – An unintentional error in calculating total deaths for Latin America and the Caribbean resulted in IHME issuing an incorrect total for the region in a June 24 press release and on its website. The reported total of nearly 388,300 excluded Argentina, Chile and Uruguay. The updated total for Latin America and the Caribbean is 438,698 deaths. IHME regrets the error.

The forecasted deaths for individual nations are correct. IHME will continue to update as new data are available.

The forecasts can be viewed at https://covid19.healthdata.org.

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Baptist Health Unveils New Safety Measures as Elective Surgeries and Procedures Resume

New Steps Geared Towards Protecting Patients and Employees

MIAMI, May 20, 2020 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Baptist Health South Florida has announced new comprehensive safety guidelines as it welcomes back more patients and ramps up operations to fully restore in-person health services system wide. As Baptist Health resumes elective surgeries and procedures, enhanced safety precautions have been introduced to prevent the spread of infection and to ensure every facility including emergency rooms, urgent care centers and physician offices can safely care for patients who need healthcare.

In an effort to promote safety, cleanliness and social distancing, here are some of the changes patients, employees and visitors can now expect at Baptist Health facilities:

  • Enhanced Cleaning of High-touch Areas
  • Universal Mask Use
  • Contactless Registration
  • Point-Of-Entry Screening
  • Wait Where You Feel Comfortable, including in some cases, in your car
  • Hand-sanitizing Stations
  • Touch-free sliding doors
  • COVID-19 Patients Treated in Separate Area
  • Front Desk Plexiglass partitions
  • Social Distance Floor Markings
  • Chairs Spaced Out
  • Magazines Removed from Tables
  • Coffee and Snack Service Suspended

“As one of the leading healthcare providers in the region, our patients and employees have come to expect the highest standards in health and safety from us,” said Bo Boulenger, Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer at Baptist Health South Florida. “Now more than ever, our patients rely on our care and we are ready to care for them, especially those who may have delayed treatment during the pandemic. Through these steps, we are confident we can protect our patients and employees as we safely care for our community.”

These safety measures are based on information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization, the American Hospital Association, the Florida Governor’s Office and the White House’s Opening Up America Again guidelines.

For more information on Baptist Health’s safety plan, visit our Patient and Visitor Safety page at https://baptisthealth-coronavirus.com/patients-and-visitors.

About Baptist Health South Florida

Baptist Health South Florida is the largest healthcare organization in the region, with 11 hospitals, more than 23,000 employees, 4,000 physicians and 100 outpatient centers, urgent care facilities and physician practices spanning across Miami-Dade, Monroe, Broward and Palm Beach counties. Baptist Health has internationally renowned centers of excellence in cancer, cardiovascular care, orthopedics and sports medicine, and neurosciences. In addition, it includes Baptist Health Medical Group; Baptist Health Quality Network; and Baptist Health Care On Demand, a virtual health platform. A not-for-profit organization supported by philanthropy and committed to its faith-based charitable mission of medical excellence, Baptist Health has been recognized by Fortune as one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For in America and by Ethisphere as one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies. For more information, visit BaptistHealth.net/Newsroom and connect with us on FacebookInstagramTwitter and LinkedIn.

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Prominent neurosurgeon Michael McDermott, M.D., joins Baptist Health South Florida to lead Miami Neuroscience Institute

CORAL GABLES, Florida, April 30, 2020 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Baptist Health South Florida welcomes Michael McDermott, M.D., a world-renowned leader in neurosciences with clinical expertise in the field of meningioma research and gamma knife radiosurgery, as its new chief medical executive of Miami Neuroscience Institute, formerly known as Baptist Health Neuroscience Center.

Dr. McDermott, widely known for advancing neurosurgical techniques, pioneered surgical management of meningioma, a slow-growing tumor in the head that affects the brain. He is an expert in the treatment of a wide variety of neurological disorders, in addition to meningiomas, skull base tumors, brain metastases, gliomas, hydrocephalus, central nervous system infections and complex tumors of the skull base and spinal cord.

“I am delighted to have a colleague of his caliber join our organization,” said Michael Zinner, M.D., chief executive officer and executive medical director at Miami Cancer Institute, part of Baptist Health South Florida. “His expertise will help enhance our collaborative and interdisciplinary approach to research and delivery of the best cancer treatments for our patients.”

Dr. McDermott has conducted leading research that generated more than 400 peer-reviewed publications and comes from the University of California San Francisco (UCSF) Medical Center, ranked by U.S. News & World Report as third in the nation in neurology and neurosurgery, where he was co-director of the Gamma Knife and CyberKnife Radiosurgery Program and held the distinguished Wolfe Family Endowed Professorship in Meningioma Research. In addition to serving as professor and vice chairman of neurological surgery, he is an accomplished educator. As residency program director, he trained young physicians from around the world.

“The arrival of Dr. McDermott to lead Miami Neuroscience Institute represents Baptist Health’s ability to harness the collective expertise of physician leaders and to offer the most innovative, comprehensive and individualized care available to our patients,” said Jack Ziffer, PhD, M.D., executive vice president, chief clinical officer and chief physician executive for Baptist Health South Florida.

Miami Neuroscience Institute provides care at all the Baptist Health facilities, with the exception of Boca Raton Regional Hospital, home to the renowned Marcus Neuroscience Institute, and Bethesda Hospital East and Bethesda Hospital West’s neuroscience programs. For the first several months, Dr. McDermott will focus on working with clinical and administrative leadership to plan and build the infrastructure as well as clinical depth and breadth of the program and set the stage for growth as a destination for neuroscience care.

“The multidisciplinary team approach we have at Baptist Health creates a special synergy between medical specialists from various fields to provide the most advanced care to our patients. This exceptional physician and surgeon will complement the tremendous medical talent that resides within Baptist Health and will continue to grow our national leadership in the treatment of conditions of the brain, spine and nervous system,” added Dr. Ziffer, PhD, M.D.

Miami Neuroscience Institute

Miami Neuroscience Institute, formerly known as Baptist Health Neuroscience Center, offers comprehensive and compassionate treatment for neurological conditions affecting the brain, spinal cord and peripheral nervous system. From non-surgical treatments and minimally invasive procedures to complex brain and spine surgery, the Center embraces a multidisciplinary approach to patient care.

Miami Neuroscience Institute is part of Baptist Health South Florida, the largest healthcare organization in the region, with 11 hospitals, nearly 23,000 employees, more than 4,000 physicians and more than 100 outpatient centers, urgent care facilities and physician practices spanning across Miami-Dade, Monroe, Broward and Palm Beach counties. Baptist Health has internationally renowned centers of excellence in cancer, cardiovascular care, orthopedics and sports medicine, and neurosciences. In addition, it includes Baptist Health Medical Group; Baptist Health Quality Network; and Baptist Health Care On Demand, a virtual health platform. A not-for-profit organization supported by philanthropy and committed to its faith-based charitable mission of medical excellence, Baptist Health has been recognized by Fortune as one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For in America and by Ethisphere as one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies. For more information, visit BaptistHealth.net/Newsroom and connect with us on FacebookInstagramTwitter and LinkedIn.

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Baptist Health International Cayman Islands PET & CT Imaging Center Receives Prestigious Recognition for Superior Patient Care

The Imaging Center was awarded the Gold Seal of Approval from the Joint Commission International (JCI), the first for Baptist Health South Florida outside the U.S.

The accreditation recognizes the Center for its high quality and standards in patient care.

GEORGE TOWN, Cayman Islands, March 12, 2020 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ – Baptist Health International Cayman Islands PET & CT Imaging Center, part of Baptist Health South Florida, was awarded the Gold Seal of Approval from the Joint Commission International (JCI), a global leader in accrediting quality in healthcare. This is the first JCI accreditation for Baptist Health South Florida outside the U.S. and positions the Imaging Center as one of the prestigious facilities around the world that are dedicated to achieving the highest standards in quality and safety in patient care.

“This recognition is a testament to our long-standing commitment to providing our patients in the Cayman Islands and the Caribbean with superior care when it comes to their health,” said Rogelio E. Ribas, corporate vice president of Baptist Health International. “We look forward to continuing the enhancement of our services and technology so that patients can have access to quality diagnostic imaging services and transforming the Cayman Islands into a top medical destination in the region.”

Accreditation was awarded following a detailed and comprehensive on-site survey and evaluation process, ensuring that the Imaging Center met the criteria in every area. JCI’s stringent standards – addressing topics such as patient education, qualification and competency of staff, the use of data to improve services and preparedness for emergencies – are updated regularly to reflect the advances in healthcare.

Baptist Health International Cayman Islands PET & CT Imaging Center is equipped with state-of-the-art positron emission tomography (PET) and computed tomography (CT) technology. It provides the latest solutions in diagnostic imaging, servicing patients not only in the Cayman Islands, but also those in other Caribbean countries who may not have access to these advanced technologies in their counties. Since its opening in 2019, the Imaging Center has provided more than 400 patients with diagnostic consults, reducing the need to travel abroad for a PET or CT scan.

About Baptist Health International
Baptist Health International is one of the largest hospital-based international programs in the United States, with more than 12,000 international patient visits at Baptist Health South Florida facilities from the Florida Keys to Palm Beach County. Baptist Health International is dedicated to providing comprehensive, high-quality services for international physicians and their patients, including hospital admissions, outpatient medical exams, medical second opinions and physician consultations, as well as concierge services.

About Baptist Health South Florida
Baptist Health South Florida is the largest healthcare organization in the region, with 11 hospitals, more than 23,000 employees, 4,000 physicians and 100 outpatient centers, urgent care facilities and physician practices spanning Miami-Dade, Monroe, Broward and Palm Beach counties. Baptist Health has internationally renowned centers of excellence in cancer, cardiovascular care, orthopedics and sports medicine, and neurosciences. In addition, it includes Baptist Health Medical Group; Baptist Health Quality Network; and Baptist Health Care On Demand, a virtual health platform. A not-for-profit organization supported by philanthropy and committed to its faith-based charitable mission of medical excellence, Baptist Health has been recognized by Fortune magazine as one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For in America and by Ethisphere as one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies. For more information, visit BaptistHealth.net/Newsroom and connect with us on FacebookInstagramTwitter and LinkedIn.

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Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute Names Joseph T. McGinn, Jr., M.D., chief of Cardiac Surgery

MIAMI, March 4, 2020 /PRNewswire-HISPANIC PR WIRE/ — Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute, part of Baptist Health and the region’s largest and most comprehensive cardiovascular facility, has named Joseph T. McGinn, Jr., M.D., chief of Cardiac Surgery. Dr. McGinn specializes in the assessment and surgical treatment of patients with coronary artery, aortic and vascular disease.  A pioneer in the field of cardiothoracic surgery, he developed the minimally invasive coronary artery bypass grafting method known internationally as the “McGinn Technique.”

Dr. McGinn comes to Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute from Sanger Heart & Vascular Institute, part of Atrium HealthCare in Charlotte, North Carolina, where he served as endowed chair of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery and professor of Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery. Prior to that appointment, he was a leading cardiac surgeon in New York City and served as medical director of the Heart Institute at Staten Island University Hospital for 16 years.

“Dr. McGinn is an expert physician and surgeon and an exceptional leader who has demonstrated excellence in patient care, innovation and team building,” said Barry T. Katzen, M.D., founder and chief medical executive of Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute. “He will complement our team of highly skilled experts, who are committed to achieving the same goals.”

Jack A. Ziffer, Ph.D., M.D., executive vice president and chief clinical officer of Baptist Health South Florida, added, “We are pleased to have Dr. McGinn join Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute in this leadership capacity to continue his groundbreaking work and further advance the Institute’s worldwide leadership position in the delivery of cardiovascular care.”

An accomplished educator, Dr. McGinn has trained hundreds of surgeons from around the world in minimally invasive cardiothoracic surgical techniques. His clinical and research efforts have generated hundreds of presentations at scientific symposiums and publications in peer-reviewed medical journals and books. He has been recognized by the American Heart Association for excellence in medicine and received the Samuel L. Koontz Award for Clinical Excellence. He is a Fellow of the American College of Cardiology, the American College of Chest Physicians and the American College of Surgeons and a member of numerous professional societies.

Dr. McGinn earned his medical degree at the State University of New York (SUNY) Downstate Medical Center College of Medicine. He completed an internship and residency in general surgery at SUNY Downstate, serving as chief resident. He also served as chief resident during a cardiothoracic surgery residency at Long Island Jewish Medical Center. He is board certified by the American Board of Surgery, American Board of Thoracic Surgery and the American Board of Surgery, Surgical Critical Care.

Dr. McGinn enjoys boating with his family and is an avid football fan. He has performed 1,500 MICS CABG cases.

About Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute
Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute is the largest and most comprehensive cardiovascular facility in the region. The team of multilingual, multidisciplinary specialists pioneered the development of minimally invasive techniques used to treat aneurysms, blockages in veins and arteries and holes in the heart. The Institute leverages the power of Baptist Health’s combined resources of experts, pioneering research, compassionate caregivers and leading-edge treatments and technology.

Miami Cardiac & Vascular Institute is part of Baptist Health South Florida, the largest healthcare organization in the region, with 11 hospitals, more than 23,000 employees, 4,000 physicians and 100 outpatient centers, urgent care facilities and physician practices spanning across Miami-Dade, Monroe, Broward and Palm Beach counties. Baptist Health has internationally renowned centers of excellence in cancer, cardiovascular care, orthopedics and sports medicine, and neurosciences. In addition, it includes Baptist Health Medical Group; Baptist Health Quality Network; and Baptist Health Care On Demand, a virtual health platform. A not-for-profit organization supported by philanthropy and committed to its faith-based charitable mission of medical excellence, Baptist Health has been recognized by Fortune as one of the 100 Best Companies to Work For in America and by Ethisphere as one of the World’s Most Ethical Companies. For more information, visit BaptistHealth.net/Newsroom and connect with us on FacebookInstagramTwitter and LinkedIn.

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