Heroes of the Week: Grover Wilhelmsen and His Caregivers Caring For Each Other

This week we are grateful for our health, and for the frontline healthcare workers who are taking care of so many of our family, friends, and community members and have been for months. We are inspired by the stories of those who are fighting to recover from COVID and the stories of those healthcare workers who are taking care of them. As COVID cases are rising, we will need each other more than ever, which is why this story hits home. Intubated COVID patient Grover Wilhelmsen was so grateful for the care he was receiving at McKay-Dee Hospital in Ogden, Utah, that he played his violin for his caregivers to thank them. Tears. Happy Thanksgiving.

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Can An App Predict The Next Pandemic?

Can An App Predict The Next Pandemic?

By Natasha Lasky, ODP Staff Writer

There are about 1.7 million viruses that afflict mammals and birds, and about half of them could potentially infect humans, just like COVID-19, SARS, HIV, and Ebola. But a team of researchers at UC Davis are attempting to help prevent another pandemic from disrupting the world, by creating an app called SpillOver.

Why this Matters:  The scientists creating the app believe that by creating a prioritized watchlist of viruses, we can better have improved detection and thus reduce the risk of disease transmission and maybe even preemptively develop vaccines, therapeutics, and public education campaigns for the viruses that pose the greatest risk.

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Pesticides Are Prevalent and Poisonous

Pesticides Are Prevalent and Poisonous

Pesticides are harmful to insects and other wildlife — including humans. The first real accounting of pesticide poisoning since 1990 found that: 

Why This Matters: We’ve been relying on old data about farmworkers’ exposure to pesticides for the past 30 years, and thus the full picture of the harmful impact of these products on people has been underappreciated.

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63 Organizations Sign Letter to Biden, Protect Wildlife to Prevent Pandemics

63 Organizations Sign Letter to Biden, Protect Wildlife to Prevent Pandemics

A coalition of 63 health, wildlife, and environmental organizations has written a letter urging the Biden administration to adopt policies to combat the increased threat of zoonotic disease spillover into human populations. In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, experts say that human population expansion and increased interactions with wildlife, present increased chances for future pandemics as well.

Why This Matters: According to the World Health Organization, there are over 200 known zoonoses, diseases that have jumped from non-human animals to humans.

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