Guidance for Relief Workers and Others Traveling to Haiti

January 18th, 2010 by admin


This notice is to advise relief workers and other personnel traveling to Haiti to assist with the humanitarian response following the January 12th earthquake near Port-au-Prince. Conditions in the area remain hazardous, including extensive damage to buildings, roads, and other infrastructure.

Before You Depart for Haiti

Recommended Vaccines

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A number of vaccines are recommended for travelers to Haiti. See your doctor before you travel to make sure you have had all necessary vaccines.

  • Routine: Be sure that you are up to date on vaccines such as measles/mumps/rubella (MMR), diphtheria/pertussis/tetanus (DPT), polio, seasonal and H1N1 flu, and varicella. It is especially important to have a current tetanus shot.
  • Hepatitis A or immune globulin (IG): Even if your departure is imminent, one dose of hepatitis A vaccine provides adequate short-term protection for healthy people. For long term protection, a second dose is required 6–18 months after the first dose, depending on the brand of vaccine used.
  • Typhoid: There are 2 vaccines available for typhoid prevention. The injectable vaccine may be preferable to the oral vaccine in cases where travel is imminent. The  oral vaccine requires refrigeration and 4 tablets taken every other day over one week.
  • Hepatitis B: If your departure is imminent, the first in a 3-dose series (day 0, 1 month and 6 months) may provide some protection. An accelerated dosing schedule may be used (doses at days 0, 7, and at 21–30 days with a booster at 12 months).

Insect-borne Diseases

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Malaria

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Malaria occurs in all parts of Haiti. Ways to prevent malaria include the following:

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Tylenol Arthritis Pain Caplets Recalled

January 10th, 2010 by admin

By Brenda Goodman

12/30/09 Federal officials have announced an expanded recall of Tylenol Arthritis Pain Caplets in 100-count bottles, citing consumer reports of a moldy or musty smell accompanied by nausea, stomach pain, vomiting and diarrhea.

In November, McNeil Consumer Healthcare, in cooperation with the U. S. Food and Drug Administration, voluntarily recalled five lots of this product, but the company expanded the alert on Monday to include all available supplies of the 100-count bottles of Tylenol Arthritis Pain Caplets, which have distinctive red “EZ-Open” caps. The company said other Tylenol Arthritis Pain products were not affected by the recall.

The company said that the strange odor was thought to be caused by a chemical called 2,4,6-tribromoanisole, a by-product of a chemical used to treat the wooden pallets that transport and store packaging materials.

The company also said that while the health effects of this chemical have not been well studied, all the adverse reactions reported thus far have been temporary and non-serious.

The company is advising those who have 100-count bottles of Tylenol Arthritis Pain Caplets with red easy-open caps to stop using the pills and return them for a refund or replacement. For instructions on returning or disposing the drug, customers have been asked to call 1-800-222-6036, or visit their Web site, www.tylenol.com.

The company said it would reintroduce the 100-count caplets in January after moving production to a new facility.

Click here for more information on this recall of Tylenol Arthritis Pain Caplets

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FDA warns of extortion scam targeting online prescription buyers

January 1st, 2010 by admin

Dozens sent money to fake federal agents after being told they would be prosecuted for buying medicine from foreign countries online or by telephone, the FDA reports.

By Diane C. Lade

Reporting from Fort Lauderdale, Fla. – Extortionists posing as federal agents have taken as much as $31,000 from frightened people who thought they would be prosecuted for purchasing their medications from outside the country, federal regulators say.

The Food and Drug Administration has received 75 to 100 reports nationwide recently of people receiving calls from individuals claiming to be FDA special agents or law enforcement officials, the agency said this week. The targets were told that buying drugs online or over the phone was illegal and that if they did not immediately pay their “fine,” they would be arrested, jailed or deported, the FDA said.

Several dozen people sent the money, usually through a wire service, to an address in the Dominican Republic, FDA spokesman Tom Gasparoli said. Most paid about $1,000 to $5,000, although some sent much more.

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