Health, Disease, Safety, Environmetal Health Information for the General Public

Hull Hospital staff stage sit-in to protest workload - "There's a big shortage of staff and we have no time to take care of people like we want to" (CBC News, Feb 19, 2018)

Is influenza hitting kids harder this year? What you need to know "Flu has killed 18 in Ottawa" (CTV News, Feb 14, 2018)

1 in 18 patients harmed in Canadian hospitals: study (CTV News)

Approximately 10,000 Canadians Die Every Year as a Result an Infection Acquired in Health Care Buildings - Introduction to CSA Z317.13 - (Public Health Ontario) - (pdf)

Dirty hospitals: Hidden camera investigation (CBC Marketplace)

Nine dead in London, Ont., area in streptococcus outbreak: health unit -
(CTV News - November 27, 2017)

Hospital overcrowding crisis caused by more than just flu, says Ontario Health Coalition (CBC) Jan 25, 2018)

Emergency department wait times in Canada continuing to rise "The amount of time most Canadians spend waiting in emergency departments to be admitted to hospital is on the rise, new data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) shows" ( Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI, 2017)

Dysfunctional Leadership & Dysfunctional Organizations - The Politics of failure: watch out for the warning signs of bad leadership - by Med Yones (International Institute of Management)

Study details extent of violence faced by hospital workers (Sheryl Ubelacker, The Canadian Press, November 25, 2017)

1 in 18 patients experiences harm in Canadian hospitals - "New measure links data to patient safety improvement efforts " (The Canadian Patient Safety Institute)

1 in 18 Canadian hospital patients experience harm from preventable errors: report - 138,000 people admitted to a Canadian hospital per year faced a harmful event that was potentially preventable (CBC News)

Flu blamed in deaths of two Ont. elementary school children (CTV News, February 10, 2018)

Flu may be spread just by breathing, new study shows; coughing and sneezing not required (Maryland School of Public Health - January 18, 2018)

Flu could raise heart attack risk, Canadian study says - Dr. Jeff Kwong, a scientist at the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES) in Toronto, says his study underlines the need for people at risk of heart attack to be especially careful in protecting themselves against the flu. (CBC) January 18, 2018)

Seasonal flu death estimate increases worldwide - According to new estimates published today, between 291,000 and 646,000 people worldwide die from seasonal influenza-related respiratory illnesses each year, higher than a previous estimate of 250,000 to 500,000 and based on a robust, multinational survey - (CDC)

Flu activity in Canada 'high' and continuing to rise, latest public health numbers say - More than 15,500 cases confirmed compared to about 9,000 this time last year (CBC News, Jan 12, 2018)

Key Facts About Influenza (Flu) - (CDC)

Flu (influenza) - Know the Flu Facts (Gov. of Canada)

Influenza (Flu) Viruses - Influenza (also known as the flu) is a contagious respiratory illness caused by flu viruses. It can cause mild to severe illness, and at times can lead to death. The flu is different from a cold. The flu usually comes on suddenly. * It's important to note that not everyone with flu will have a fever. (CDC - October 5, 2017)

Frozen raspberries contaminated with Norovirus may be linked to deaths in Quebec: Report - "A recent public health assessment revealed that frozen raspberries imported from China sickened hundreds of Quebecers last summer -- some fatally" (CTV News, February 10, 2018)

Norovirus - "Most foodborne outbreaks of norovirus illness occur when food is contaminated by food handlers who have the virus, especially if they don't wash their hands properly after using the bathroom. Some foods can be contaminated at their source (for instance, shellfish such as oysters can be contaminated by sewage in water before they are harvested). Waterborne outbreaks are often caused by sewage contamination of drinking water from wells and recreational water" (Public Health Agency of Canada)

Norovirus (Norwalk Virus) (U.S. Department of Health & Human Services)

Norovirus - "Norovirus is a very contagious virus that can infect anyone. You can get it from an infected person, contaminated food or water, or by touching contaminated surfaces. The virus causes your stomach or intestines or both to get inflamed. This leads you to have stomach pain, nausea, and diarrhea and to throw up. These symptoms can be serious for some people, especially young children and older adults" "Norovirus illness is not related to the flu, which is a respiratory illness caused by influenza virus." (CDC- 2016)

About Reye Syndrome (RS) - Reye's syndrome (RS) is primarily a children's disease, although it can occur at any age. "Epidemiologic evidence indicates that aspirin (salicylate) is the major preventable risk factor for Reye's syndrome" (PubMed Health)

Preventing Infections in People With Cancer (American Cancer Society)

Doctors warn of heart risk from some breast cancer therapies (CBC News, Feb 01, 2018)

Adding heart failure drug to breast cancer treatment lessens heart damage (By American Heart Association News)

Auditor General of Ontario found cancer patients who need take-home cancer treatments are facing administrative delays in starting treatments and safety issues (Canadian Cancer Society - 06 December 2017)

Cancer Patients and Fungal Infections - As a cancer patient, you may have received a lot of information about your treatment and your journey to recovery. Chemotherapy and radiation cause many changes in the body as they destroy cancer cells. One major change is that these treatments weaken your immune system, which can increase your chances of getting an infection, including a fungal infection (CDC)

Care at Home for the Immunocompromised Patient - e.g. cancer patient (The Johns Hopkins Hospital Patient Information)

Hospitalized Patients and Fungal Infections
Even though you're staying in the hospital to get better, it's possible to get an infection while you're there. If you're staying in the hospital for an injury or an illness, you may be at risk for getting a fungal infection, especially if you're very sick or have a weak immune system. These types of infections are called healthcare-associated infections (HAIs) - (CDC, January 25, 2017)

The Topic Is Cancer - Get the Facts: 3 Myths about Cervical Cancer Screening - (CDC)

How to avoid the hookworm skin infection on your next winter vacation to Mexico and the Caribbean - 'It's from dogs and cats pooping indiscriminately on the beaches,' tropical disease expert says (CBC News)

Hookworm FAQs (CDC)

Infographic: Avoid Spot Treat: Frostbite & Hypothermia - Office of Public Health Preparedness and Response - (CDC)

Major Montreal earthquake could cause $45 billion in damages: expert - While most B-C residents are mindful of the risk they face from a potentially devastating earthquake, it seems there's far less awareness of the quake threat in Eastern Canada (CTV News, January 13, 2018

National Institute on Aging - Health Information (NIH)

NIH News in Health - special issue of NIH News in Health, the monthly newsletter bringing you practical health news and tips based on the latest NIH research. This collection of popular stories about aging and senior health from past issues has been reviewed and updated (NIH)

Shiga Toxin-Producing E. coli & Food Safety - Some kinds of E. coli bacteria cause disease when they make a toxin called Shiga toxin. The bacteria that make these toxins are called "Shiga toxin-producing E. coli," or STEC for short. The most common type of STEC in the United States is E.coli O157:H7 (often shortened to E. coli O157 or even just O157). - (CDC)

Public Health Notice – Outbreak of E. coli infections linked to romaine lettuce.
"E. coli are bacteria that live naturally in the intestines of cattle, poultry and other animals. A common source of E. coli illness is raw fruits and vegetables that have come in contact with feces from infected animals. Leafy greens, such as lettuce, can become contaminated in the field by soil, contaminated water, animals or improperly composted manure. Lettuce can also be contaminated by bacteria during and after harvest from handling, storing and transporting the produce. Contamination in lettuce is also possible at the grocery store, in the refrigerator, or from counters and cutting boards through cross-contamination with harmful bacteria from raw meat, poultry or seafood. Most E. coli strains are harmless to humans, but some varieties cause illness."(Public Health Agency of Canada - 2018-01-10)

Hepatitis A Questions and Answers for the Public (CDC)

Hepatitis A Fact Sheet (WHO, July 2017)

Hepatitis A - Hepatitis A is a highly contagious liver infection caused by the hepatitis A virus. The virus is one of several types of hepatitis viruses that cause inflammation and affect your liver's ability to function. You're most likely to get hepatitis A from contaminated food or water or from close contact with a person or object that's infected. Mild cases of hepatitis A don't require treatment. Most people who are infected recover completely with no permanent liver damage. Practicing good hygiene, including washing hands frequently, is one of the best ways to protect against hepatitis A. Vaccines are available for people most at risk (Mayo Clinic)

Bloodborne Infectious Diseases: hiv/aids, hepatitis b, hepatitis c (WHO, July 2017)

Look what the cat dragged in: dead rats signal 'crisis,' Centretown (Ottawa, ON. woman warns (CBC News Dec 15, 2017)

Diseases directly transmitted by rodents - (CDC)

Hantavirus - Infection with hantavirus can progress to Hantavirus Pulmonary Syndrome (HPS), which can be fatal. People become infected through contact with hantavirus-infected rodents or their urine and droppings. (CDC)

Diseases directly transmitted by rodents: Worldwide, rats and mice spread over 35 diseases - (CDC)

Lead Hazards in Some Holiday Toys and Toy Jewelry - Protect children from exposure to lead in metal and plastic toys, especially imported toys, antique toys, and toy jewelry (CDC)

Lead poisoning and health - (WHO)

Penalties when workers die on the job don't go far enough, say labour groups, families - Only 5 jail sentences have been served in connection with a workplace fatality "Nearly every day in Canada, a family gets a call that shakes its foundations to the core: a father, a mother, a son or daughter has been killed on the job" (CBC News - Nov 30, 2017)

A worker dies on the job every 5 days in Quebec. Here's one family's story - Province has lowest fines in Canada for unsafe work places, CBC investigation finds - (CBC News - Dec 05, 2017)

Ontario seeking public input on employer accreditation program (Canadian Occupational Safery - 11/10/2017)

Group A Streptococcal (GAS) Disease (CDC)

Ottawa vet warning dog owners about potentially deadly disease - Leptospirosis can also be passed from animals to humans - An Ottawa veterinarian is sounding the alarm after treating a dog for leptospirosis at his clinic last week (CBC News - Nov 23, 2017)

Leptospirosis - Leptospirosis is a bacterial disease that affects humans and animals. It is caused by bacteria of the genus Leptospira. In humans, it can cause a wide range of symptoms, some of which may be mistaken for other diseases. Some infected persons, however, may have no symptoms at all. Without treatment, Leptospirosis can lead to kidney damage, meningitis (inflammation of the membrane around the brain and spinal cord), liver failure, respiratory distress, and even death - (CDC)

Lyme disease cases more than double in Ottawa this year - "168 confirmed human cases in Ottawa this year, up from 74 cases in 2016" (CBC News - Nov 16, 2017)

Every season is tick season': Experts warn of winter Lyme disease risk - "People have 'let their guard down' and aren't checking for ticks as weather cools, says zoologist" (CBC News - Nov 22, 2017)

List of diseases spread by deer tick grows, including malaria-like problems and potentially fatal encephalitis - (ScienceDaily)

Lyme disease - (Government of Canada)

Lyme disease and related tick-borne infections (University of Maryland Medical Center)

Lyme Disease - Learn how to avoid bites from blacklegged ticks, which may carry Lyme disease (The Ontario Ministry of Health)

The Development of Guillain-Barre Syndrome (Gbs) in Association with Confirmed Lyme Disease. A Potential Autoimmune Response in Gbs Secondary to Tick-Borne Diseases? - Seemal F Awan et al (Clin Microbiol 4:199. doi: 10.4172/2327-5073.1000199)

Guillain-Barré Syndrome Fact Sheet - (National Institutes of Health / National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke)

Animal Diseases and Your Health (MedlinePlus)

Canadian fire extinguishers recalled for being defective - An American company is recalling 37 million fire extinguishers in the U.S. and 2.7 million in Canada because they can get clogged or require excessive force to discharge and won't work in an emergency - (CBC News - Nov 02, 2017)

Escalator accidents happen every 2nd day in Montreal Metro (CBC - Oct 26, 2017)

The Lancet Commission on pollution and health "For decades, pollution and its harmful effects on people's health, the environment, and the planet have been neglected both by Governments and the international development agenda. Yet, pollution is the largest environmental cause of disease and death in the world today, responsible for an estimated 9 million premature deaths" ( Elsevier Limited - October 19, 2017)

Gateway to Health Communication & Social Marketing Practice - Anhydrous Ammonia (CDC)

Sexually Transmitted Diseases (STDs) (CDC)

STDs Hit All-Time High in U.S. (STDs) - Annual report shows more than 2 million cases of chlamydia, gonorrhea and syphilis reported in 2016 (MedlinePlus)

Sexual and reproductive health (WHO)

8 Ways College Women Can Protect Their Health - Awareness and follow-up are keys to avoiding gynecologic problems, expert advises (MedlinePlus - September 26, 2017)

Herpes simplex virus (WHO)

Genital Herpes - CDC Fact Sheet (CDC)

Herpes Simplex Virus - Pathogen Safety Data Sheet - INFECTIOUS SUBSTANCES (Public Health Agency of Canada)

Herpes Simplex Virus Infections - By Craig R. Pringle, BSc, PhD, University of Warwick (Merck Manual, Consumer Version)

Cold Sores / Herpes (BC Centre for Disease Control)

Antibiotic-Resistant Gonorrhea

Scientists warn that antibiotic-resistant gonorrhoea is on the rise - "Every day, more than 1 million sexually transmitted infections are acquired worldwide, and each year an estimated 78 million people are infected with gonorrhoea. New data from 77 countries show that antibiotic resistance is making gonorrhoea much harder – and sometimes impossible – to treat." " Gonorrhoea can be prevented through safer sexual behaviour, in particular consistent and correct condom use. Information, education, and communication can promote and enable safer sex practices, improve people's ability to recognize the symptoms of gonorrhoea and other sexually transmitted infections, and increase the likelihood they will seek care. Today, lack of public awareness, lack of training of health workers, and stigma around sexually transmitted infections remain barriers to greater and more effective use of these interventions." (WHO)

Cannabis legislation fails to protect Canada's youth - Diane Kelsall, MD MEd (CMAJ May 29, 2017 vol. 189 no. 21)

Nanoparticles from tattoos travel inside the body, scientists find (ScienceDaily, 2017)

Tattoo ink nanoparticles in skin tissue and fibroblasts (Beilstein Journal of Nanotechnology - 2015, 6, 1183–1191. doi:10.3762/bjnano.6.120)

Think Before You Ink: Are Tattoos Safe? (U.S. FDA, May 2, 2017)

'Toxic' tattoo ink particles can travel to your lymph nodes: study (Global News, September 15, 2017)

Consumer Product Update: Health Canada warns of potential risks of tattoo removal products (Health Canada, February 24, 2015)

In the Ink: Do All Tattoo Pigments Use Mercury and Other Toxic Heavy Metals? (2017 SCIENTIFIC AMERICAN)

Meningitis and Encephalitis Fact Sheet (NIH)

U.S. FDA warns of problems with EpiPen manufacturing plant (CBC News)

Invasive Meningococcal Disease - Invasive meningococcal disease can lead to: meningitis, a dangerous infection of the lining of the brain and spinal cord, and/or septicemia, a serious blood infection. Invasive meningococcal disease is spread through close, direct contact such as: living in close living quarters, kissing, coughing or sneezing, sharing food or drinks sharing toothbrushes, mouthguards, cigarettes or lipstick, sharing mouthed toys, or musical instruments with a mouthpiece. (Public Health Agency of Canada)

Shingles (Herpes Zoster) - Shingles is caused by the varicella zoster virus (VZV), the same virus that causes chickenpox. After a person recovers from chickenpox, the virus stays dormant (inactive) in the body. For reasons that are not fully known, the virus can reactivate years later, causing shingles. Shingles is not caused by the same virus that causes genital herpes, a sexually transmitted disease. (CDC)

Non-Polio Enterovirus - Non-polio enteroviruses are very common. They cause about 10 to 15 million infections and tens of thousands of hospitalizations each year in the United States. Most people who get infected with these viruses do not get sick or they only have mild illness, like the common cold. But some people can have serious complications, especially infants and people with weakened immune systems (CDC)

Toxoplasmosis (MedlinePlus)

Powassan Virus - is transmitted to humans by infected ticks (CDC)

Lone Star tick (CDC)

Meat Allergy - A bite from the Lone Star tick can cause people to develop an allergy to red meat, including beef and pork. (American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology)

West Nile virus - is most commonly transmitted to humans by mosquitoes (CDC)

Mosquito-Borne Diseases (CDC)

Zika Virus - What You Need to Know (CDC)

Insects - (The University of Minnesota)

What is Bovine Tuberculosis? - "is a chronic disease of animals caused by a bacteria called Mycobacterium bovis, (M.bovis) which is closely related to the bacteria that cause human and avian tuberculosis. This disease can affect practically all mammals, causing a general state of illness, coughing and eventual death." (OiE)

Apartments - Fire Safety - {People living in an apartment building need to think ahead and be prepared in the event of a fire. It is important to know the fire safety features in your building and work together with neighbors to help keep the building as fire-safe as possible.} (National Fire Protection Association - NFPA)

FAQs about building evacuation (NFPA)

Emergency Management Home (Ontario Ministry of Community Safety)

Emergency Preparedness (Public Safety Canada)

Fire Safety - Safety tip sheets - (National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) 2017)

Home Fire Safety - Learn how your family can prevent home fires, escape from a home fire in 2 minutes, and recover after a home fire - (The American National Red Cross)

Canadian Codes Centre (National Research Council Canada)

High-rise buildings - High-rise buildings present several unique challenges not found in traditional low-rise buildings; longer egress times and distance, evacuation strategies, fire department accessibility, smoke movement and fire control. (NFPA)

ARE THERE CARCINOGENS IN YOUR WORKPLACE? - "The risk of developing work-related cancer is far less obvious than the risk of falling or being injured on the job. Still, it's a very real risk. Just as employers and workers must do their part to make workplaces safer and try to eliminate accident risks, it is equally important for them to identify carcinogens and play an active role in reducing exposure" - (IRRST - Institut de recherche Robert-Sauvé en santé et en sécurité du travail)

ASBESTOS - "Asbestos" is a commercial name, not a mineralogical definition, given to a variety of six naturally occurring fibrous minerals. These minerals possess high tensile strength, flexibility, resistance to chemical and thermal degradation, and electrical resistance. These minerals have been used for decades in thousands of commercial products, such as insulation and fireproofing materials, automotive brakes and textile products, and cement and wallboard materials. When handled, asbestos can separate into microscopic-size particles that remain in the air and are easily inhaled. Persons occupationally exposed to asbestos have developed several types of life-threatening diseases, including asbestosis, lung cancer and mesothelioma. Although the use of asbestos and asbestos products has dramatically decreased in recent years, they are still found in many residential and commercial settings and continue to pose a health risk to workers and others - (NIOSH)

New cases of mesothelioma and asbestos-related lung cancer in one year cost $1.9B (Institute for Work & Health - Canada)

Full Asbestos Ban, changed codes and regulations expected by 2018 - Candian Government to prohibit asbestos in new construction and renovations, ban it in imports such as brake pads (CBC News)

Asbestos - (There is NO "SAFE" level of asbestos exposure for any type of asbestos fiber) - (U.S. OSHA)

Asbestos - McGill University is receiving $70 million from the federal government for renovations. - $33 million for the Stewart Biology Building, where asbestos will be removed

Too many contractors aren't removing asbestos properly, says B.C. Building Trades Council - (CBC News BC)

Asbestos: elimination of asbestos-related diseases - Fact sheet Updated June 2016 (WHO)

Canada to ban asbestos: What you need to know about the common carcinogen (Global News)

Asbestos - In the Home (Canadian Centre for Occupational Health & Safety)

Health risks of asbestos - Asbestos, if inhaled, can cause cancer and other diseases (Government of Canada - Health)

Asbestos awareness for homeowners (Work Safe BC)

Region fined after construction workers exposed to asbestos (CTV News, January 13, 2017)

Asbestos testing should be required before renovations start, say experts (CBC News)

Respirable Crystalline Silica: Breathe Easier - CAREX Canada reports that approximately 380,000 Canadians are exposed to silica at work, primarily in the construction sector. According to 2011 cancer statistics from CAREX, 570 lung cancer cases (2.4% overall) were attributed to occupational exposure to crystalline silica in Canada. (CCOHS)

Silica (WorkSafeBC)

Silica - "One of the highest risks for workers repeatedly exposed to Silica is Silicosis, a nonreversible lung disease with symptoms that can range from shortness of breath and chest pains, to an eventual inability to breathe that could turn fatal.Beyond the cutting and crushing Keeping you safe from Crystalline Silica "Crystalline Silica is more likely to be present in the air when you're cutting, sawing, drilling or crushing concrete, brick, ceramic tiles, rocks or stones. It also shows up whenever you're working with sand products like glass and pottery. Some of the more dangerous workplaces include mines and foundries and tasks like include abrasive blasting" (3M Sciences Applied to Life)

Controlling Silica Exposures in Construction While Operating Handheld Masonry Saws

Silica in Construction: From Danger to Safety (YouTube)

Silica (Crystalline) - (CAREX Canada)

Control of Drywall Sanding Dust Exposures (CDC)

Gypsum Wallboard Panels Safety Data Sheet (American Gypsum Company LLC)

Respiratory Protection (Infrastructure Health & Safety Association)

Radon in your home - Radon is a radioactive gas that you cannot see, smell or taste and can get into your home undetected. It is the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking and the leading cause of lung cancer for non- smokers. When radon escapes from the ground into the outdoor air it is diluted to low concentrations and is no cause for concern. However, when radon enters an enclosed space, like a home, it can accumulate to high levels and become a health hazard. (Health Canada)

RADON A Guide for Canadian Homeowners (CMHC)


EPA News Release on National Radon Action Month - EPA Urges Home Radon Tests This January for National Radon Action Month - Radon, a naturally-occurring radioactive gas that causes cancer, can build up to unsafe levels in any home at any time of year. "If a high radon level is found, the good news is that this serious environmental risk can be reduced by using simple, proven techniques comparable to the cost of other minor home repair or improvement projects," said Bill Wehrum, Assistant Administrator of EPA's Office of Air and Radiation. Millions of homes in the United States have elevated levels of radon. Inhalation of radon damages lung cells and kills approximately 21,000 people annually, making radon the second leading cause of lung cancer after smoking - (EPA)

Study finds deadly radon gas exceeds safe levels in one of eight Calgary homes (Calgary Herald)

Mike Holmes: Catch that silent killer before it gets into your house - Radon is a silent killer (National Post)

Radon - Frequently Asked Questions (Health Canada)

How to Test for Radon? (Health Canada)

Homeowner's Guide to Radon (The Canadian Real Estate Association (CREA) - (pdf)

One-in-three heater-cooler devices may contain deadly bacteria: study (CTV News)

Heater-Cooler Devices - Risk of Nontuberculous Mycobacteria Infections (Health Canada)

Healthy living can prevent disease (Public Health Agency of Canada)

Staying Healthy (Harvard Health Publications - Harvard University)

Tobacco Hazards - Fact sheet (WHO)

Cannabis legislation fails to protect Canada's youth - Diane Kelsall, MD MEd (CMAJ May 29, 2017 vol. 189 no. 21)

Fentanyl: The king of all opiates, and a killer drug crisis - It's stronger than heroin and more potent than OxyContin. It's also cheap, ubiquitous, and incredibly deadly. Inside the rise of fentanyl (Maclean's - Rogers Media)

Medical experts urge Canada to declare public emergency over opioid crisis - Federal Health Minister Jane Philpott says root causes of overdose deaths must be examined (CBC News)

Sarcoidosis - Symptoms and causes (Mayo Clinic)

Histoplasmosis - Histoplasmosis is an infection caused by a fungus called Histoplasma. The fungus lives in the environment, particularly in soil that contains large amounts of bird or bat droppings (CDC)

Fungal Diseases - Fungal diseases can affect anyone. Learning about them can help you and your doctor recognize the symptoms of a fungal disease early and may help prevent serious complications (CDC)

Parasites - Echinococcosis - People who accidentally swallow the eggs of the Echinococcus multilocularis tapeworm are at risk for infection. People at high risk include trappers, hunters, veterinarians, or others who have contact with wild foxes, or coyotes, or their stool, or household dogs and cats that have the opportunity to eat wild rodents infected with AE. Humans can be exposed to these eggs by "hand-to-mouth" transfer or contamination. How do people get alveolar echinococcosis: By directly ingesting food items contaminated with stool from foxes or coyotes. This might include grass, herbs, greens, or berries gathered from fields. By petting or handling household dogs or cats infected with the Echinococcus multilocularis tapeworm. These pets may shed the tapeworm eggs in their stool, and their fur may be contaminated. Some dogs "scent roll" in foreign material (such as wild animal feces) and may become contaminated this way. (CDC)

500,000 Canadians miss work each week due to mental health concerns (By Carmen Chai Senior National Online Journalist, Health Global News)

World Health Day 2017: Why the WHO chose depression as its focus this year (By Carmen Chai Senior National Online Journalist, Health Global News)

"Tortured Mind" Ontario schools are missing 'perfect opportunity' to address mental health amid rash of youth suicides (By Andrew Russell, Global News)

Ask About Suicide (Canadian Mental Health Association - British Columbia Division)

Suicide Prevention In Schools (Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention)

Suicide Prevention on College Campuses: A Step by Step Guide to Developing a Comprehensive Approach (California Mental Health Services Authority)

World Health Day 2017 – Depression: let's talk (World Health Organization WHO)

Fast Facts about Mental Illness (Canadian Mental Health Association)

Fatigue (National Safety Council)

Lack of Sleep Takes Big Bite Out of World Economies (MedlinePlus)

Dr. Rachel Manber Discusses Sleeping Well as We Age - "A common misperception is that we do not need as much sleep as we age, but it turns out that we need a good night's sleep throughout our lifespan. This talk focuses on sleep mechanisms, addressing misconceptions and the practical things we can do to promote healthy sleep habits as we age. Sleep on!" - (video presentation) - (Stanford University Healthcare)

A groundbreaking effort against 'the big one' {What may come as a surprise to many is the report's assessment that on the eastern side of the country, particularly in the Ottawa-Montreal-Quebec City corridor, there is a comparable risk. In that region, the chance of a seriously damaging earthquake is only about 10 per cent in the next 50 years. But the abundance of older buildings and a general lack of public awareness about how seismically active the area is could potentially lead to a costly outcome.} (Ivan Semeniuk, Science Reporter - THE GLOBE AND MAIL)

Fault Lines - A catastrophic earthquake hits Canada's West Coast. In Fault Lines CBC Vancouver Seismologist Johanna Wagstaffe guides you through two disastrous scenarios so you can prepare yourself, your family, and your neighbours. (CBC Radio Podcasts)

Summary Safety Review - Fluoroquinolones - Assessing the potential risk of persistent and disabling side effects [Ciprofloxacin, Levofloxacin, Moxifloxacin, Norfloxacin and Ofloxacin] - (Health Canada)

Drugs and Health Products Safety Reviews - (Health Canada)

Search recalls and safety alerts - (Government of Canada - Health)

The problem with tanning (and the myth of the base tan) - (Robert H. Shmerling, MD, Faculty Editor, Harvard Health Publications)

Marijuana and Public Health - Health Effects - (CDC)

E-Cigarettes and Young People: A Public Health Concern - (CDC)

Marijuana and Public Health (CDC)

5 Germy Items You Probably Don't Clean - (University of Utah Health)

What Your Shoes Bring Home - (University of Utah Health)

Bedbugs, fleas, lice, ticks and mites - Ectoparasites that live on the body, in clothing and in beds - (WHO)

How to avoid getting bedbugs this moving season - (CBC News)

What you can do to prevent Alzheimer's - Lisa Genova- - (TED)

Harvard Health Publications (Harvard Medical School)

HEALTH INFORMATION (U.S. National Institutes of Health)

Health A-Z - Conditions and treatments (GOV.UK)

Don't Let Glaucoma Steal Your Sight!
Glaucoma is a group of diseases that damage the eye's optic nerve and can result in vision loss and even blindness. About 3 million Americans have glaucoma. It is the 2nd leading cause of blindness worldwide. Open-angle glaucoma, the most common form, results in increased eye pressure. There are often no early symptoms, which is why 50% of people with glaucoma don't know they have the disease. There is no cure (yet) for glaucoma, but if it's caught early, you can preserve your vision and prevent vision loss. Taking action to preserve your vision health is key. (CDC)

OnHealth (WebMD)

Probiotics - A live microorganism used as a dietary supplement to help with digestion and normal bowel function. It may also help keep the gastrointestinal (GI) tract healthy. A bacterium found in yogurt called Lactobacillus acidophilus, is the most common probiotic. (PubMed Health)

Keeping Your Gut in Check Healthy Options to Stay on Tract (NIH News in Health, May 2017)

Senior Health (U.S. National Institutes of Health)

Skin Infections: What You Should Know - Slide Show (WebMD)

Health Information For General Public - (A Vermont Government Website)

Phthalates - Phthalates are a group of chemicals used to soften and increase the flexibility of plastic and vinyl.  Polyvinyl chloride is made softer and more flexible by the addition of phthalates. Phthalates are used in hundreds of consumer products.  Phthalates are used in cosmetics and personal care products, including perfume, hair spray, soap, shampoo, nail polish, and skin moisturizers. They are used in consumer products such as flexible plastic and vinyl toys, shower curtains, wallpaper, vinyl miniblinds, food packaging, and plastic wrap. Phthalates are also used in wood finishes, detergents, adhesives, plastic plumbing pipes, lubricants, medical tubing and fluid bags, solvents, insecticides, medical devices, building materials, and vinyl flooring. The substance has been linked to hormonal interference, as well as declines in IQ, and respiratory problems in children. - ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH CONCERNS AND TOXIC CHEMICALS WHERE YOU LIVE, WORK, AND PLAY (TOX TOWN - NIH)

Information Leaflets for the General Public - (Health Protection Surveillance Centre, Dublin, Ireland)

Information Leaflets for the General Public - (Health Protection Surveillance Centre, Dublin, Ireland)

Interim Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfection of Vehicles with Rodent Infestations (CDC)

Statement from Dr. David Williams, Ontario's Chief Medical Officer of Health, on Seoul Virus Infection to rat exposure in Ontario (Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care)

Wild Animals - Wild animals accounted for 92.6 percent of reported cases of rabies in 2014 (U.S.). Raccoons continued to be the most frequently reported rabid wildlife species (accounting for 30.2 percent of all animal cases during 2014), followed by bats (29.1 percent), skunks (26.3 percent), and foxes (4.1 percent). (CDC)

Rabies - Rabies is a deadly animal disease caused by a virus. It can happen in wild animals, including raccoons, skunks, bats and foxes, or in dogs, cats or farm animals. People get it from the bite of an infected animal. (MedlinePlus)

Man bit by raccoon believed to be rabid as virus spreads in Toronto - (CTV News, February 11, 2018)

Rabies - (CDC)

Tularemia - Tularemia is a disease of animals and humans caused by the bacterium Francisella tularensis. Rabbits, hares, and rodents are especially susceptible and often die in large numbers during outbreaks. Humans can become infected through several routes, including: Tick and deer fly bites; Skin contact with infected animals; Ingestion of contaminated water; Inhalation of contaminated aerosols or agricultural dusts; Laboratory exposure - (CDC)

Plague - Plague is an infectious disease that affects rodents, certain other animals, and humans. It is caused by the Yersinia pestis bacteria. These bacteria are found in many areas of the world, including the United States. People most commonly acquire plague when they are bitten by a flea that is infected with the plague bacteria. People can also become infected from direct contact with infected tissues or fluids while handling an animal that is sick with or that has died from plague. Finally, people can become infected from inhaling respiratory droplets after close contact with cats and humans with pneumonic plague. (CDC)

Poisonous Plants - (CDC)

Environmental Health - Dangerous Weeds - Giant Hogweed, Poison Ivy, and Wild Parsnip - (Leeds, Grenville and Lanark District Health Unit, Ontario)

Poison Plants: Myths and Facts (WebMD)

Poison Ivy and Other Plants: What You Should Know (WebMD)

Why sitting is bad for you - Murat Dalkilinç

Ergonomic Guidelines for Manual Material Handling (Cal/OSHA Consultation Service)

Physical Strength Assessment in Ergonomics (CDC)

Simple Solutions for Home Building Workers - A Basic Guide for Preventing Manual Material Handling Injuries (CDC)

Back pain at work: Preventing pain and injury (Mayo Foundation for Medical Education and Research)

Sitting at your desk all day increases your risk for heart attack, stroke and even death (MedlinePlus)

Evaluating your computer workspace - How to make it work for you (Oregon OSHA Standards and Technical Resources)

The Computer User's Guide to an Ergonomic Workstation (State of California Department of Personnel Administration)

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome Also called: Median nerve entrapment (MedlinePlus)

Persistent Pain in the Neck! What Resources Help you Prevent MSDs in the Workplace? (NIOSH)

Climate Change and Public Health Factsheets (Health Canada)

Cough Culprits - What's the Difference Between Bronchitis and Pneumonia? (NIH News in Health, May 2017)

Mumps makes a comeback in Canada and the U.S. (CBC News)


Science Education (NIH)

Diseases & Conditions A-Z List (

Explore Our Slideshows (

Aortic Aneurysm Fact Sheet (CDC - Division for Heart Disease and Stroke Prevention)

Cerebral Aneurysms Fact Sheet - Aneurysms may burst and bleed into the brain, causing serious complications, including hemorrhagic stroke, permanent nerve damage, or death. Once it has burst, the aneurysm may burst again and bleed into the brain, and additional aneurysms may also occur. More commonly, rupture may cause a subarachnoid hemorrhage— bleeding into the space between the skull bone and the brain. A delayed but serious complication of subarachnoid hemorrhage is hydrocephalus, in which the excessive buildup of cerebrospinal fluid in the skull dilates fluid pathways called ventricles that can swell and press on the brain tissue. Another delayed postrupture complication is vasospasm, in which other blood vessels in the brain contract and limit blood flow to vital areas of the brain. This reduced blood flow can cause stroke or tissue damage (National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke National Institutes of Health - 2017)

"We are not ready": Experts warn world is unprepared for next Ebola-size outbreak (CBC)

WHO's 'priority pathogens' list highlights urgent need for new drugs - Bacteria are getting tougher, but no truly novel antibiotics have made it to market in 30 years (CBC News)

2016 Health Care in Canada survey provides insights into what Canadians think of their health care system - Med e-News McGill Faculty of Medicine Electronic Newsletter. Sunday, October 30th, 2016

Future Care for Canadian Seniors: A Primer on Nursing Supply and Demand (The Conference Board of Canada - 2017)

Comparing Performance of Universal Health Care Countries, 2016 (The Fraser Institute)

Canada ranks well in global health care access study, but room for improvement - (CTV News)

20 Tips to Help Prevent Medical Errors: Patient Fact Sheet (Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality)

Waiting Your Turn: Wait Times for Health Care in Canada, 2016 Report (The Fraser Institute)

Latest Health News (MedlinePlus)

Spray foam insulation nightmare: What can happen if it's not installed correctly (CBC Marketplace)

Health Concerns about Spray Polyurethane Foam - Individuals with a history of skin conditions, respiratory allergies, asthma, or prior isocyanate sensitization should carefully review product information when considering the use of spray polyurethane foam (SPF) products and may want to consider safer alternatives. Manufacturers recommend in their isocyanate safety data sheets that individuals undergo medical surveillance prior to working with these materials and individuals with a history of medical conditions as described above will be restricted from work with isocyanates. - Read more about chemicals in SPF products. Misleading marketing information can result in spray foam applicators and home and building owners not understanding the need for adequate personal protective equipment and other precautions, such as ventilation, during and after installation. (U.S. FDA)

Safer Workplace Practices for Spray Polyurethane Foam Installation (U.S. FDA)

Fiberglass, Cellulose, or Foam: Which Is the Right Insulation Material for You? (Occupational Health and Safety online) (American Academy of Family Physicians)

Snored to death: The symptoms and dangers of untreated sleep apnea - (2018, Harvard University)

Making a Healthier Home - Cast Toxins From Your Living Space (NIH)

Infectious Diseases Information - (Public Health Agency of Canada)

Infectious Diseases - Public Health Ontario

Bovine tuberculosis - (The World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE))

Diseases and conditions - (Government of Canada - Health)

Hospitalized Patients and Fungal Infections (CDC)

Get Prepared for an Emergency (Public Safety Canada)


Office Environment Safety (NIOSH)

Diesel - Diesel exhaust is a mixture of gases and tiny particles. This exhaust contains carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, nitrogen oxides, sulfur compounds, formaldehyde, benzene, volatile organic compounds, persistent organic pollutants (POPs), methanol, and other gases. (TOX TOWN)

Indoor Air Quality (IAQ) (U.S. EPA)

Moisture and Air - A Guide for Understanding and Fixing Interior Moisture Problems in Housing (Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation)

Before You Start an Energy Efficient Retrofit — Mechanical Systems (Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation)

Healthy Housing Reference Manual - Indoor Air Pollutants and Toxic Materials (CDC)

Carbon Monoxide - Furnace Safety Fact Sheet - When Your Furnace Kicks On, Be Sure Poison Gas Isn't Coming Out - (CDC)

The Inside Story: A Guide to Indoor Air Quality (U.S. EPA)

An Office Building Occupants Guide to Indoor Air Quality (U.S. EPA)

Known and Probable Human Carcinogens (The American Cancer Society)

The Mold Survival Guide by Jeffrey C. May (Johns Hopkins University Press)

Beyond the dark spots and musty smells. - Keeping you safe from Mould (Canadian Occupational Safety / and 3M Corporation)

Why Are Biocides Not Recommended for Mould Remediation? (Mould and Bacteria Consulting Laboratories)

Preventing Occupational Respiratory Disease from Exposures Caused by Dampness in Office Buildings, Schools, and Other Nonindustrial Buildings (CDC)


Floodwater and Your Health: Frequently Asked Questions (Manitoba Gov.)

Guidance on Microbial Contamination in Previously Flooded Outdoor Areas (CDC)

Private Ground Water Wells - (CDC)

Drinking Water - Diseases and Contaminants - (CDC)

Drinking Water - Information (CDC)

Preventing cryptosporidiosis: the need for safe drinking water - (Bulletin of the World Health Organization)

Healthy Swimming (CDC)

Pool parasite: Swimmers urged to take simple steps to avoid Cryptosporidium (CBC News -May 20, 2017)

Beware of contaminated pool water: Outbreaks of a parasitic diarrhea-causing infection linked to pools and water playgrounds doubled in the United States from 2014 to 2016. (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention YouTube Presentation)

Printer Emitted Particles: Are they safe? (Center for Nanotechnology and Nanotoxicology, T.H. Chan Harvard School of Public Health)

Chemicals in printing (Health and Safety Executive - U.K)

Trichloroethylene (TCE) Fact Sheet (Toxics Use Reduction Institute - UMass Lowell)

Best Before and Expiration Dates on Foods – What do they mean? (Canadian Food Inspection Agency)

The National Center for Home Food Preservation (The University of Georgia | College of Family and Consumer Sciences)

Food Safety (CDC)

The Role of Environmental Reservoirs in Human Campylobacteriosis: Int J Environ Res Public Health. 2013 Nov; 10(11): 5886–5907 - (NCBI)

Campylobacter (Campylobacteriosis) (CDC)

Guillain-Barré Syndrome Fact Sheet - (National Institutes of Health / National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke)

Listeria (Listeriosis) Listeriosis is a serious infection usually caused by eating food contaminated with the bacterium Listeria monocytogenes. An estimated 1,600 people get listeriosis each year, and about 260 die. The infection is most likely to sicken pregnant women and their newborns, adults aged 65 or older, and people with weakened immune systems. - (CDC) {Listeriosis can cause fever, muscle aches, headache, stiff neck, confusion, loss of balance and convulsions sometimes preceded by diarrhea or other gastrointestinal symptoms. An invasive infection spreads beyond the gastrointestinal tract. In pregnant women, the infection can cause miscarriages, stillbirths, premature delivery or life-threatening infection of the newborn. In addition, serious and sometimes fatal infections can occur in older adults and persons with weakened immune systems. Listeriosis is treated with antibiotics. Persons in the higher-risk categories who experience flu-like symptoms within two months after eating contaminated food should seek medical care and tell the health care provider about eating the contaminated food.}

E.coli (Escherichia coli) - Escherichia coli (abbreviated as E. coli) are bacteria found in the environment, foods, and intestines of people and animals. E. coli are a large and diverse group of bacteria. Although most strains of E. coli are harmless, others can make you sick. Some kinds of E. coli can cause diarrhea, while others cause urinary tract infections, respiratory illness and pneumonia, and other illnesses - (CDC)

Norovirus — Norovirus is a very contagious virus that can infect anyone. You can get it from an infected person, contaminated food or water, or by touching contaminated surfaces. The virus causes your stomach or intestines or both to get inflamed. This leads you to have stomach pain, nausea, and diarrhea and to throw up. These symptoms can be serious for some people, especially young children and older adults. - (CDC)

Norovirus — Noroviruses are a group of viruses that cause gastroenteritis, an illness that usually includes diarrhea and/or vomiting. Noroviruses are commonly found throughout North America and are very infectious. (Public Health Agency of Canada)

Salmonella - Every year, Salmonella is estimated to cause one million foodborne illnesses in the United States, with 19,000 hospitalizations and 380 deaths. Most persons infected with Salmonella develop diarrhea, fever, and abdominal cramps 12 to 72 hours after infection. The illness usually lasts 4 to 7 days, and most persons recover without treatment. However, in some persons, the diarrhea may be so severe that the patient needs to be hospitalized. - (CDC)

Food Facts: Food Safety (Institute of Food Technologists)

Food Safety (Health Canada)

Food Poisoning (Healthline)

Bakers beware: How E. coli in flour can make you sick (CTV News)

Trichinellosis - Fact Sheet - Trichinellosis (trichinosis) is a disease that can affect both animals and humans. It is caused by small nematodes (roundworms) of the Trichinella species. Infective larvae are transferred (from host-to-host) by the consumption of raw or undercooked infected meat. (Canadian Food Inspection Agency) (U.S. Department of Health & Human Services)

Anisakiasis: a growing cause of abdominal pain! [caused by the consumption of contaminated raw or undercooked fish or seafood] - (BMJ Case Reports 2017)

Viral Hepatitis A - Hepatitis A is a liver infection caused by the Hepatitis A virus (HAV). Hepatitis A is highly contagious. It is usually transmitted by the fecal-oral route, either through person-to-person contact or consumption of contaminated food or water. Hepatitis A is a self-limited disease that does not result in chronic infection. More than 80% of adults with Hepatitis A have symptoms but the majority of children do not have symptoms or have an unrecognized infection. Antibodies produced in response to Hepatitis A last for life and protect against reinfection. The best way to prevent Hepatitis A is by getting vaccinated - (CDC)

Health risks and safety - Access information about recalls and safety alerts, as well as tips on home safety and being prepared in an emergency (Government of Canada Health)

Health and Safety Information on Household Product (U.S. National Library of Medicine / NIH)

Safety of cell phones and cell phone towers - (Government of Canada)

The secret inside your cellphone (CBC Marketplace)

The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) has classified RF fields as "possibly carcinogenic to humans," based on limited evidence of a possible increase in risk for brain tumors among cell phone users, and inadequate evidence for other types of cancer. (American Cancer Society, Inc. - 2017)

How to Reduce Exposure to Radiofrequency Energy from Cell Phones (Division of Environmental andOccupationalDisease Control • CaliforniaDepartment of PublicHealth)

Management of hazardous waste and hazardous recyclable material in Canada - (Environment and Climate Change Canada)

Hazardous Waste and Recyclable Material - What are hazardous wastes and hazardous recyclable materials and why do they need to be controlled? - (Environment and Climate Change Canada)

How to dispose of household hazardous waste - (The David Suzuki Foundation)

Workers Exposure to Sewage - (Work Safe Alberta)

Guidance For Controlling Potential Risks To Workers Exposed to Class B Biosolids - (CDC)

Guidance for Reducing Health Risks to Workers Handling Human Waste or Sewage - (CDC)

Guide to Field Storage of Biosolids - (U.S. EPA - Office of Wastewater Management)

OSH Answers Fact Sheets - What are some health and safety issues for plumbers? (CCOHS)

Waste collectors 3 times more likely to be hurt on the job "Public needs to realize their curbside is collectors' workplace" (by Amanda Silliker, 12/11/2017 Canadian Occupational Safety)

Assessment of Occupational Exposure Risks to Sewage Workers - Cowie, C et al (Epidemiology: November 2006 - Volume 17 - Issue 6)

Health and Safety for Dairy Farms - Guide Booklet (WorkeSafeBC)

Ozone Safe Practices (WorkSafe BC)

Sun Safety at Work Canada - is enhancing sun safety for Canadian workplaces. "The sun is a workplace hazard that can cause skin cancer, heat stress and eye damage. These conditions are preventable"

The Neighborhood Sandbox: A Breeding Ground for Germs - Bacteria, parasites and other nasty surprises may be hiding in the sand - by Steven Reinberg - WebMD

Home Blood Pressure Monitors Wrong 7 of 10 Times - Checking your device against ones used at your doctor's office may be advised, experts say (WebMd)

What Are Frontotemporal Disorders? (National Institute on Aging)

Meningitis and Encephalitis Fact Sheet (NIH / National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke)

Trees, insects and diseases of Canada's forests - Search on Trees, insects and diseases of Canada's forests website (Natural Resources Canada)

Cities are driving evolution — and may spawn new species, scientists say (Emily Chung, CBC News - Nov 02, 2017)

School Chemistry Laboratory Safety Guide (NIOSH)

Growing Up Wired: Social Networking Sites and Adolescent Psychosocial Development
(Clin Child Fam Psychol Rev. 2014 Mar; 17(1): 1–18)

"We're designing minds": Industry insider reveals secrets of addictive app trade - A look at the science behind the 'technological arms race' to keep people fixated on their phones - "The average Canadian teenager is on track to spend nearly a decade of their life staring at a smartphone, and that's no accident, according to an industry insider who shared some time-sucking secrets of the app design trade" (CBC Marketplace)

Formaldehyde and Cancer Risk (U.S. National Cancer Institute)


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