CDC HAN on Chloroquine as Seen on TV

CDC has released a new HAN Health Alert Advisory on Severe Illness Associated with Using Non-Pharmaceutical Chloroquine Phosphate to Prevent and Treat COVID-19.  The Summary includes “Chloroquine phosphate, when used without a prescription and supervision of a healthcare provider, can cause serious health consequences, including death.  Clinicians and public health officials should discourage the public from misusing non-pharmaceutical chloroquine phosphate (a chemical used in home aquariums).  Clinicians should advise patients and the public that chloroquine, and the related compound hydroxychloroquine, should be used only under the supervision of a healthcare provider as prescribed medications.”  Find the CDC HAN at https://emergency.cdc.gov/han/2020/han00431.asp?deliveryName=USCDC_511-DM24285.

12/3+ UCLA CORE Kidney Program and UKEEP

UCLA’s CORE Kidney Program has announced the timing of their next several webinars, UKEEP meetings, and annual Kidney Fair at the Beach.  They will present:

  • A December 3, 2019 webinar on the UCLA CORE Kidney Program itself called Giving Tuesday; find a poster about it, with registration information, at https://s3-us-west-2.amazonaws.com/nwrn.org/files/N/UKEEP/UCLACore120719.pdf.
  • A December 8, 2019 UKEEP meeting on Drugs and Medications: What You Need to Know.
  • A January 16, 2020 webinar on High Blood Pressure: What You Need to Know.
  • A February 13, 2020 webinar on Living Kidney Donation.
  • Their May 17, 2020 Kidney Fair at the Beach.

For more information on these and to RSVP, see https://www.uclahealth.org/core-kidney/upcoming-events.

10/17 DPC Webinar on Transplant

Dialysis Patient Citizens will present an October 17, 2019 webinar on Decisions You Need to Make about Your Transplant Choice.  The webinar will cover high risk donors, the transplant waitlist, and how to be a “great transplant recipient.”  RSVP at https://www.dpcedcenter.org/news-events/education-webinars/.  This is short notice, but the webinar will be recorded, and when the recording is ready you can find a link to it at the same web page, along with past webinars on topics like diabetes, employment, exercise, medications, laughter, support, and many others.  The next monthly webinar, on November 21, will be about Treatments and Modality Options for Kidney Disease.  There’s no date set yet, but the December webinar will be on Kidney Nutrition.  Find more details and RSVP for current and future webinars at https://www.dpcedcenter.org/news-events/education-webinars/signup/.

11/12-18 Antibiotic Awareness Week

The CDC has announced that US Antibiotic Awareness Week is November 12–18, 2018.  Antibiotics are life-saving drugs and critical tools for treating infections like those that can lead to sepsis.  However, when antibiotics aren’t needed, they won’t help you, and the side effects could still cause harm.  Additionally, any time antibiotics are used in people or animals, they can lead to antibiotic resistance.  Everyone has a role to play to improve antibiotic prescribing and use.  CDC recommends four ways to participate in Antibiotic Awareness Week:

  • Use and share Be Antibiotics Aware educational materials, including graphics for print and social media from CDC’s national educational effort to keep patients safe, decrease adverse drug events, and help fight antibiotic resistance.  See https://www.cdc.gov/features/antibioticuse/index.html.
  • Make a commitment to The AMR Challenge.  Join leaders worldwide to combat antibiotic resistance by improving antibiotic use, including ensuring access to these drugs globally.  See https://www.cdc.gov/drugresistance/intl-activities/amr-challenge.html.
  • Join the Global Twitter Storm on Thurs., November 15 from 9-10 am ET using the hashtag #AntibioticResistance.  Use social media to spark conversation throughout the week using #USAAW18 and #BeAntibioticsAware.
  • Follow CDC’s Safe Healthcare Blog for daily stories on Antibiotic Awareness; see https://blogs.cdc.gov/safehealthcare/.

This annual one-week observance helps raise awareness of the importance of appropriate antibiotic use to combat the threat of antibiotic resistance.  CDC is a global leader in efforts to improve antibiotic prescribing and use practices.  Improving the way we prescribe and take antibiotics helps keep us healthy now, helps fight antibiotic resistance, and ensures that these life-saving drugs will be available for future generations.

CDC HAN on Coagulopathy

CDC has published a Health Alert Network advisory on vitamin K-dependent antagonist coagulopathy caused by synthetic cannabinoids apparently contaminated with the rodenticide brodifacoum.  While CDC does not report any cases from the West Coast, they advise proceduralists who deal with blood, and others, to be aware of the possibility.  The HAN includes:

  • Recommendations for clinicians, including notifying health authorities, especially in cases where a synthetic cannabinoid user has recently donated blood
  • Recommendations for public health officials, including notifying CDC
  • Recommendations for the general public, including avoiding synthetic cannabinoids

For details see https://emergency.cdc.gov/han/han00410.asp.

There is no suggestion that natural, non-synthetic cannabinoids are similarly contaminated; these are regulated and legal by state law in all of Networks 16 and 18 except Idaho, and increasingly used for medical purposes.  There is also no suggestion that natural, non-synthetic, non-psychoactive CBD oil made from industrial hemp, which is available throughout the US, is similarly contaminated; however, outside of the regulated marketplace, industrial-hemp CBD oil is unregulated, so the potential for contamination of some kind is always present.