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Averting the Lassa Fever Scare: Multifaceted Action Urgently Required

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first_imgIn early March this year the National Public Health Institute of Liberia (NPHIL) reported the outbreak of Lassa fever in Montserrado and Nimba counties, claiming three lives. Immediately following this scary announcement, the Daily Observer, in an Editorial, called on the Liberian government to treat the resurgence of this deadly disease with urgency, in order to forestall its spread.The Editorial further disclosed that a total of 134 contacts had been identified in Montserrado County (105), Margibi, 25 and Nimba (4), including 37 health workers. The Editorial noted that since January 1 this year, a total of 28 suspected cases of Lassa fever have been reported across the country, including 12 deaths in Montserrado, Bong and Nimba counties.Now two more deaths from Lassa fever have been reported this week—both in Margibi County—from a highly authoritative source, the county’s Chief Medical Officer, Dr. Myer Chea Pajibo. The Liberia News Agency (LNA) reported that Dr. Pajibo made the announcement this Tuesday at a news conference at the C.H. Rennie Memorial Hospital in Kakata, the Margibi capital.The two confirmed cases, he said, had been identified on May 4 and 7, 2018 at the C.H. Rennie Hospital. But he declined to name the victims or their specific communities, though Dr. Pajibo did indicate that both victims came from Kakata, the county capital, and from Gibi, a mountainous region of the county. The Chief Medical Officer made another equally troubling revelation.The male victim and his wife had traveled to Toma in Bong County to the funeral of their grandchild “who had suddenly died from a fever of unknown origin.” Could the fever that killed their grandchild have also been Lassa fever? Too bad an autopsy on the child did not take place before burial, though it may not be too late.But surely this should lead Bong County authorities, beginning with their Chief Medical Officer and Phebe and C.B. Dunbar Hospitals to launch an immediate investigation into the nature of the fever that caused this child’s death, to authenticate whether or not it was Lassa fever, and also to test other children in the area to determine whether any of them may be afflicted with that or any other strange “fever”.On a broader perspective, we are again calling on the Liberian government, most especially the Ministry of Health and the NPHIL to institute a national ALERT initiative, to warn the public about the danger of Lassa fever and ALL that people can and must do vigorously to suppress the further spread of this virus. Part of the campaign should be to let the public know exactly where the disease comes from.Lassa fever is a viral hemorrhagic illness caused by a virus that is transmitted through contact with the urine or feces of infected rodents (rats) and through direct contact with body fluids of infected individuals. Hemorrhagic means a profuse discharge of blood vessel; bleeding or the abnormal flow of blood. And where do rats, roaches, mosquitos and other such dangerous creatures come from?They come from unattended garbage—huge dumpsites, mountains of which are found in Paynesville, especially the commercial Red Light district, stagnant water found in such places as the clogged drainages in Soniwehn in central Monrovia and elsewhere.We must here highly commend the new Mayor of Paynesville City, Madam Pam Belcher-Taylor, who shortly after taking office has already begun cleaning up the garbage from the city’s main thoroughfare, Tubman Boulevard, especially the filthy stockpiles found near Matilda Parker’s place of birth.We pray that Mayor Belcher-Taylor will go further and clean up the marketplaces where our market women, with their babies and other children must sell in filth; and also the piles of garbage leading to the Gobachop market and the long stretches of garbage behind the Police Station on Somalia Drive. We make the same plea to the Mayor of Monrovia, Jefferson Koijee, to clean up the nation’s capital—Soniwehn, Center Street, including the Palm Grove Cemetery, Waterside and the whole Bushrod Island vicinity.We make the same appeal to all of Liberia’s other mayors, especially those where the Lassa fever virus has been taking its deadly toll—in Kakata and other areas of Margibi County, Gbarnga and other parts of Bong County, Ganta, Sanniquellie and other parts of Nimba County.The Heath authorities, especially Minister Wilhelmina Jallah, should ever remember the urgent plea we made in a recent Editorial, to reactivate the Ministry’s Sanitation Division, so that they may undertake a vigorous campaign to ensure a clean Monrovia and all other cities around the country.The Health Minister and all government officials have definitely heard of the ancient dictum—“Cleanliness is next to godliness.” All of our doctors, nurses and paramedics and most people in Liberia have also heard that “Prevention is better than cure.”A vigorous sanitation campaign is a most critical part of PREVENTION!Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

See What OSU Football Players Had to Say After 36-34 Win Over K-State

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first_img5-0 #togodbetheglory— Jordan Sterns (@31rzns) October 4, 2015 Great teams rally together in tough times!! #UNDEFEATED #TGBTG— Ryan Simmons (@RS_52) October 4, 2015 If only people knew how hard the team works day in and day out! This is the kind of stuff that we prepare for… #GoPokes— Kirk Tucker ?? (@YouWannaBe_KPT) October 4, 2015 Incredible finish tonight, it’s a great day to be a Cowboy!— Brad Lundblade (@BradLundblade) October 4, 2015 What a day to be a Cowboy?? #5-0— John Kolar (@john_kolar7) October 4, 2015 If you’re looking for the comments section, it has moved to our forum, The Chamber. You can go there to comment and holler about these articles, specifically in these threads. You can register for a free account right here and will need one to comment.If you’re wondering why we decided to do this, we wrote about that here. Thank you and cheers! Great WIN today #Gopokes ?? #5-0— Jalen McCleskey (@lilsho2) October 4, 2015 Wasn’t pretty but I thank God for the win!?— Emmanuel Ogbah (@EmanOgbah) October 4, 2015center_img 5-0 baby. We are blessed— Chad Whitener (@MountChad) October 4, 2015 Doesn’t matter how.. 5-0 sounds great.! ??? #gopokes— Joshua Mabin (@OGClarkKent) October 4, 2015https://twitter.com/JMElias47/status/650471046890389504We ball, 5-0 ??? #ForPitt— Jordan Burton™ (@bighit20) October 4, 2015 Thanks to all the true fans that stayed till the very end!!! We love you guys! #gopokes— Emmanuel Ogbah (@EmanOgbah) October 4, 2015 For the second week in a row, Oklahoma State stole one in a last-minute nerve-racking thriller. See what OSU football players had to say about the dramatic win from Saturday:A tough one but we battled it out. Great win boys, loved every minute of it. 5-0 #GoPokes ??— Kevin Peterson (@Pistol_Peterson) October 4, 2015 Five and 0 baby! Back to work tomorrow. #OkState— Zac Veatch (@zveatch) October 4, 2015 Glory to God. Keep it rolling State. #5-0 pic.twitter.com/gOSJX6wvye— Marcell Ateman. (@ItsMarcell) October 4, 2015last_img read more

Interactive TV specialist Accedo is to integrate a

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first_imgInteractive TV specialist Accedo is to integrate automated content recognition technology from Audible Magic into its TV app solutions.Accedo said the deal reflected the importance of enabling multiple devices to recognise aired content, even on live, never-before-shown programmes, in real time.“We believe that one of the major hurdles to truly innovative TV application development is content recognition,” said Accedo CEO Michael Lantz. “For Accedo, it is key to be able to offer a trusted content recognition solution to media companies and TV platforms, and together with our customers we see endless innovation possibilities. With our partnership with Audible Magic, we believe we’ve found the company with the right mix of robust, reliable and patent-protected ACR technologies, comprehensive services, and globally available and professional support.”last_img read more

BSkyB is making its sports channels available on a

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first_imgBSkyB is making its sports channels available on a pay-as-you-go basis for £9.99 (€11.65) a day without a TV subscription for the first time. Sky is to offer access its six Sky Sports channels to customers of Now TV, the over-the-top TV service launched by Sky late last year, for a 24-hour period for £9.99.  Now TV had registered 25,000 monthly pass customers at the end of December, according to the company, representing about half of all new TV customers. Sky Sports will be added to Now TV later this year on completion of the current beta test.Sky added 88,000 new customers in its fiscal second quarter, taking its overall base to 10.74 million. Its total subscription product base – encompassing HD, multroom and Now TV sales as well as TV, broadband and telephony customers – grew 10% year-on-year to 29.5 million at the end of December, with triple-play penetration reaching a third of its overall base.Sky Go users increased by 46% year-on-year to reach 3.1 million in December. Sky said weekly on-demand downloads grew by 150% in the second quarter.Average revenue per customer grew by £24 year-on-year to reach £568 by the end of December. Sky posted 5% growth in revenue for the six months to the end of December to £3.533 billion. Adjusted operating profit was up 8% to £647 million.“Although we expect the consumer environment in 2013 to remain challenging, we have a strong set of plans for the year ahead. We will keep getting better on screen, further improve our products and services for customers and maintain our focus on efficiency. The business is in good shape to continue to deliver for customers and shareholders,” said CEO Jeremy Darroch.Sky Sports has secured a trio of four-year agreements to international rugby with the International Rugby Football Union, giving viewers access to live coverage of Ireland’s Guinness Series, together with France and Italy’s autumn internationals.Separately, Sky has signed a new multi-year movies deal with Sony Pictures Television, giving customers the ability to view movies including Men in Black 3, The Amazing Spider-Man and Django Unchained. Sky Movies customers will be able to view Sony movies about six months after their theatrical run has ended. All movies will be available on demand, on Sky Go, HD, and, where available, 3D. Alongside exclusive access to the first pay TV window titles, Sky and SPT have also agreed a non-exclusive deal for pay-per-view movies, which will be available to Sky customers through Sky Movies Box Office and on demand through Sky Store.last_img read more

Roku is still the most popular streaming media pla

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first_imgRoku is still the most popular streaming media player in the US, accounting for 30% of players sold in the year to March, according to figures compiled by Parks Associates.According to the research unveiled this week at INTX, Amazon is now running in equal second place with Google, each with 22% of the market, followed by Apple with a 20% share. Together the big four providers of streaming media devices account for 94% of the market, up from 86% in 2014.Apple TV saw the largest increase in unit sales – 50% – over the year, thanks primarily to the launch of the new version of the product. Amazon also saw strong sales growth.Amazon and Apple have made the biggest strides since 2014, when Amazon Fire TV accounted for 16% of US sales and Apple TV accounted for 13%, with Roku accounting for 34% and Google Chromecast accounting for 23%.According to Parks Associates, 86 million streaming media players will be sold globally in 2019.“Thirty-six per cent of US broadband households have at least one streaming media player, up from 27% last year,” said  Barbara Kraus, director of research, Parks Associates. “Device makers have successfully sold streaming media players to consumers by offering easy access to a variety of content streams, as well as frequent updates that add the latest innovation. Amazon in particular has benefited by promoting its Fire TV devices in conjunction with the company’s Prime Video service as well as streams from HBO, Showtime, and other premium offerings.”last_img read more

Disney has unveiled the Disney Digital Network a

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first_imgDisney has unveiled the Disney Digital Network, a new home for digital stories that brings together Disney characters and a “curated set” of Maker creators.In an announcement at its Digital Content NewFronts event in New York, Disney said that the network will consist of more than 300 social media channels and a slate of original digital programmes that includes the Star Wars and Club Mickey Mouse brands.The strategy, according to Disney, is to create high quality, digital-first stories and deliver them through digital platforms and influencers to millennial and Gen Z audiences.Disney Digital Network will also include Disney’s in-house branded content service, Disney Co/Op, which works to pair up Disney digital storytellers with advertisers looking to create campaigns across social platforms like Twitter, Instagram and Facebook.“This network is our response to how our advertising partners have been telling us they want to engage audiences: with high-quality content, mobile formats including micro-content and short-form video, social media influencers, and diverse distribution options across all major platforms,” said Disney-ABC Television Group president of sales, Rita Ferro.“We can now connect these opportunities with first-party data, proprietary insights, quality of service, and brand safety.”Overall, Disney estimates that the Disney Digital Network will have a reach of more than 1 billion followers, and claimed it will be “one of the most impactful publishers in digital media”.Jimmy Pitaro, chairman, Disney Consumer Products and Interactive Media, said: “This network extends our stories to the platforms Gen Z and millennial audiences are on every day, with diverse editorial voices that integrate top creators and influencers.”The ‘editorial voices’ that will be present on the network include: Oh My Disney, delivering a “daily dose of Disney”; Disney Style, which looks at current fashion and beauty trends through the lens of Disney stories and characters; Polaris, which features original content from a community of gaming personalities; and the StarWars.com website and Star Wars app – the digital homes for “all things Star Wars”.The new digital video programming slate consists of seven shows and includes: Science and Star Wars, a series that looks at the parallels between the science fiction of Star Wars and real-world scientific breakthroughs; and Club Mickey Mouse, a digital-first variety show that celebrates the original linear TV show that ran until the mid-90s.The news follows reports from February that Disney-owned Maker Studios was cutting some 80 jobs. The Wall Street Journal reported at the time that Maker was making the layoffs as it “radically shrinks” the number of YouTube creators it supports from 60,000 to as little as 300 video makers with large followings.last_img read more