Review Category : Health

Meet the Pint-Sized Vaccine Supporter Who Gives a ‘Damn’ About Vaccine Bill

Rhett Krawitt made his adorable plea to keep unvaccinated kids out of schools, as California considers state legislation to abolish personal-belief exemptions. KGO-TV.(SACRAMENTO, Calif.) — A controversial California bill to end personal-belief exemptions for students who are unvaccinated has been helped by one very important, yet pint-size supporter.

Rhett Krawitt, 7, became one of the faces for the new bill aimed at raising vaccination rates by ending personal-belief exemptions for students at California schools. He gave multiple speeches on vaccines, even though he usually needed a chair to reach the podium microphone.

Rhett told ABC News that the bill overcoming a major hurdle by passing the California State Assembly was “exciting.”

“Vaccines save lives,” he told reporters before taking a petition to end personal-belief exemptions with 30,000 signatures to California Gov. Jerry Brown’s office earlier this week.

“My name is Rhett and I give a damn!” he said at the end of his speech.

For the last six months, Rhett and his family in Corte Madera, California, worked to highlight the importance of vaccines by telling Rhett’s story.

For three-and-half years Rhett remained extremely vulnerable to common diseases as his immune system was ravaged by leukemia treatments. After finishing his treatment, he was finally able to be vaccinated this year although he won’t be fully up to date till later this year due to the vaccine schedule he’s on.

Rhett’s father, Carl Krawitt, said he never expected for Rhett or his family to be advocates but said he was “proud” to have been involved with helping get the bill through the legislature.

“At the time we were a little overwhelmed,” by media attention, said Krawitt. “But when I stepped back, we had an opportunity to tell our story.”

Krawitt said he remembered when Rhett was getting leukemia treatment in 2010 there were a few weeks when babies with whooping cough filled the pediatric oncology floor because there was no room for them on other floors.

“That didn’t have to happen,” Krawitt said. “It’s because people don’t vaccinate.”

While vaccination levels remain high over all, pockets of unvaccinated people — including in relatively well-to-do communities — have contributed to outbreaks of disease, including measles and whooping cough in recent years.

Rhett attends school in Marin County in California, where just over 84 percent of kindergartners are fully vaccinated, according to the California Department of Public Health.

The bill to ban personal exemptions is expected to pass the state senate, which passed an earlier version of the bill. After that vote, Gov. Brown will have 12 days to sign the bill into state law.

ABC US News | World News

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Your Body: Bridging the Brain Gender Gap

iStock/ThinkstockBy DR. JENNIFER ASHTON, ABC News Senior Medical Contributor

Men are terrible listeners.

“What’s that? You didn’t hear me?” That’s exactly my point.

There are actually receptors in the brain — little docking stations for hormones — and they act differently. But within terms of brain development and function, women tend to have more verbal centers in the brain and men tend to need more processing time.

If you want to be heard in your next conversation, pick the right time — not just based on the time of day, but what someone is doing.

Second, be concise and get to the point. Short and sweet is the way to be.

Lastly, make sure you communicate the good, old-fashioned way: in person. Having conversations via text or e-mail risks that the real message will get lost.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Your Body: Bridging the Brain Gender Gap

iStock/ThinkstockBy DR. JENNIFER ASHTON, ABC News Senior Medical Contributor

Men are terrible listeners.

“What’s that? You didn’t hear me?” That’s exactly my point.

There are actually receptors in the brain — little docking stations for hormones — and they act differently. But within terms of brain development and function, women tend to have more verbal centers in the brain and men tend to need more processing time.

If you want to be heard in your next conversation, pick the right time — not just based on the time of day, but what someone is doing.

Second, be concise and get to the point. Short and sweet is the way to be.

Lastly, make sure you communicate the good, old-fashioned way: in person. Having conversations via text or e-mail risks that the real message will get lost.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Study: Americans Working More, Sleeping More, Watching More TV

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Turns out, our complaints that we’re too busy working to exercise, take that night class or write that book are bogus. At least, that’s what the government says.

The new American Time Use Survey by the Bureau of Labor Statistics finds that while we are, indeed, working longer hours than ever before, we’re also watching more TV than ever before. Compared to 2013, we worked 10 additional minutes a day last year, for an average of seven hours, 45 minutes. That’s if you’re employed, of course.

However, we also watched two hours, 49 minutes on average of TV every day in 2014, three more minutes than the year before. Just hanging out with friends came in at a rather distant second, at just 43 minutes a day.

Men spent more time every day in leisure activities than women did last year — six hours versus five hours, 12 minutes. Not surprisingly, households with no kids reported more time for fun than those with kids, by almost an hour.

What may come as the biggest surprise is how much sleep we say we’re getting, on average. The study, which surveyed nearly 12,000 U.S. adults, says we got an average of eight hours, 48 minutes of shut-eye every day, four more minutes than in 2013.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Study: Americans Working More, Sleeping More, Watching More TV

iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) — Turns out, our complaints that we’re too busy working to exercise, take that night class or write that book are bogus. At least, that’s what the government says.

The new American Time Use Survey by the Bureau of Labor Statistics finds that while we are, indeed, working longer hours than ever before, we’re also watching more TV than ever before. Compared to 2013, we worked 10 additional minutes a day last year, for an average of seven hours, 45 minutes. That’s if you’re employed, of course.

However, we also watched two hours, 49 minutes on average of TV every day in 2014, three more minutes than the year before. Just hanging out with friends came in at a rather distant second, at just 43 minutes a day.

Men spent more time every day in leisure activities than women did last year — six hours versus five hours, 12 minutes. Not surprisingly, households with no kids reported more time for fun than those with kids, by almost an hour.

What may come as the biggest surprise is how much sleep we say we’re getting, on average. The study, which surveyed nearly 12,000 U.S. adults, says we got an average of eight hours, 48 minutes of shut-eye every day, four more minutes than in 2013.

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Man Dies After Contracting Rare Bacteria While Swimming in Gulf Coast Beach in Florida

Wirepec/iStock/Thinkstock(PINE ISLAND BEACH, Fla.) — A 26-year-old man recently died after contracting a rare, deadly bacterial infection while swimming in the Gulf of Mexico near Tampa, officials confirmed on Thursday.

The victim, Cason Yeager, who is from Lake County, died on June 16, only two days after he went swimming, his mother Karen Yeager told local station WTSP-TV.

“This has been a nightmare for me, to say the least, and nobody should have to go through this,” Karen Yeager said, adding she wants to spread awareness that even healthy people can fall victim to the bacteria that killed her son — Vibrio vulnificus.

Yeager’s death is Florida’s fourth Vibrio vulnificus fatality this year, Florida Department of Health spokeswoman Mara Burger told ABC News on Thursday, adding that his death comes after a previous warning the department made about the bacteria.

Vibrio vulnificus is a naturally occurring bacteria that is a bit more active in the summer, according to Anne Gayle Ellis, a spokeswoman for the Florida Department of Health in Hernando County.

The bacteria is often incorrectly referred to as “flesh-eating” bacteria, Ellis told ABC News. However, the bacterium can cause infections that may lead to skin breakdown, ulceration and possible fatal complications in immunocompromised people, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Karen Yeager told WTSP-TV her son seemed healthy. Now, she said she wants people to be aware of the dangers in the water.

“I’m not telling anyone don’t go into the water,” Karen Yeager said. “Just do your due diligence and make sure that you’re not going to harm yourself.”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Nearly 160 Children Possibly Exposed to TB in West Texas

kukhunthod/iStock/Thinkstock(El PASO, Texas) — At least 160 children in the Clint Independent School District were possibly exposed to Tuberculosis, according to public health officials.

In a statement released on Wednesday, the El Paso Department of Public Health said they are investigating whether children in the school district came in close contact with somone who had TB.

Officials sent letters home to the parents whose children may have been infected with the bacterial illness.

Although not easily transmitted, the letter urges parents to get their children screened through a blood draw and not wait for symptoms to show up as the longer the children are exposed to TB the likelihood of transmission increases.

“We continue to work closely with officials from the Clint Independent School District as well as the Department of State Health Services to determine which children are considered as having been possibly exposed,” said Bruce Parsons, Interim Health Director for the El Paso Department of Health in a statement. “We ask that parents who receive the letter participate in the screening so that we can determine whether or not their child was exposed and follow up with appropriate treatment.”

Tuberculosis is a bacterial disease contracted by breathing in infected droplets from the cough or a sneeze of a person who already has TB. Symptoms include fever, pain in the chest while breathing, and loss of appetitie.

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Upbeat Maryland Governor Optimistic About Cancer Diagnosis

ABC News(ANNAPOLIS, Md.) — Maryland Governor Larry Hogan saw a slight improvement in diagnosis after he who found out last month that he is suffering from cancer.

Governor Hogan was shaving when he found a golf-ball sized lump in his neck. He thought it might be just a cyst, but an MRI showed 30 to 40 more malignant tumors. Doctors told him he had B-Cell non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, Stage 4.

The Republican governor said on Thursday doctors revised that diagnosis, telling him he is, “At Stage 3 rather than Stage 4 and it’s much less complicated even though it’s pretty far spread.”

He extended some more good news on Thursday, stating it makes his, “Chances much much better, it makes it easier to go after this thing.”

The 59-year-old Hogan will check in for four days of chemo next week, and says he’s confident he’ll “come out on the other side of it.”

Copyright © 2015, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Four Tips to Improve Your Online Dating Profile

AndreyPopov/iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) — Morgan Brady has tried online dating for the past two and a half years and had little success.

“There’s been a lot of that messaging back and forth that kind of gets exhausting after a while,” said the 27-year-old Boston event planner. Digital dating expert Laurie Davis analyzed Brady’s profile, looking at it “the way a guy looks at your profile.”

But with Davis’ help, Brady found four easy ways she could improve her dating profile.

Here are her little tips that could improve your online dating profile in a big way:

1. Your online dating profile should tell a story.

For example, Brady’s profile said, “She loves exploring new places,” but Davis thinks that’s not enough. She would rather Brady show a guy what she likes to do for fun. That includes showing it in her photos.
And that leads to Tip #2…

2. The pictures you put on your profile should be you only, free of any Instagram filters and include a full body shot.

“The first thing I always look at is the first thing guys always look at in your profile, which is photos,” Davis said. “I would love to see a main photo … that’s a clear head and shoulders shot with a bright color shirt on.”

3. When messaging, instead of just saying, “Hey,” ask them about something specific in their profile.

“In order to really get a conversation started, you need to ask a question and relate to them,” Davis advised.

She says try to find mutual interest, such as playing poker, and say something like, “I’m a budding poker player, too. Right now I’m reading ‘Small Stakes Hold-Em’ to brush up on my game. Where do you play?”
Davis also noted: keep the message conversational and no more than three lines long.

4. Hug your suitor upon first meet.

“When you first meet up with someone, you need to hug them right away, because you have had this physical barrier in between you,” Davis advised, just to make things less awkward. “it will make the whole rest of the night more comfortable.”

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Mom Says She Lost Sight in One Eye Just 12 Hours After Mud Run

Courtesy Brittany Williams(DALLAS) — A Texas mom is hoping to have her sight restored after a bacterial infection left her with an irreparably damaged cornea.

Brittany Williams,23, took part in a mud run in Dallas on June 7 and said that after the race she felt that something was in her eye. She flushed her eye out and took Tylenol, but 12 hours later she was horrified to find she could not see out of one eye.

“I woke up and my eye was white and you couldn’t see out of it,” Williams recalled. She initially stayed calm until her boyfriend saw her eye and immediately called doctors for help.

“I could tell by my fiancé’s reaction … he’s in the medical field and started to lose it a little bit,” she recalled. “I knew at that point something was really wrong.”

Williams went to a specialist, who sent her to a Dallas hospital where she said they found that William’s contact had scratched her cornea and a virulent bacterial infection had then damaged the area. Williams said she hadn’t realized her contact was still in her eye during the race.

Doctors have yet to figure out the specific infection, but, Williams said, “They know it’s a very, very aggressive bacteria. I went blind in 12 hours.”

Williams had to spend nine days in the hospital before her eye stabilized. She said she stayed near the operating rooms because her doctors were worried she would need an emergency cornea transplant. They wanted to avoid that because the bacteria in her eye could then damage the new cornea.

Dr. Amy Zhang, an ophthalmologist at University Hospitals Case Medical Center, said having a contact in the eye can be especially damaging during a bacterial infection.

“[A contact lens] has just the right water content and there’s no other place for [bacteria] to go,” said Zhang, who did not treat Williams. “It’s a perfect petri dish.”

Zhang said if there’s no place for the bacteria to go under the lens it will start to invade the eye and can mean speeding up the effects of the infection. She pointed out sleeping in contacts means your chances of eye infection rise “nine times.”

A few weeks after the mud run, Williams, who is now using drops every few hours to help her eye heal, can no longer see out of her eye. Williams’ parents have had to help care for her 4-year-old daughter as she seeks treatment by going to the offices of different eye specialists nearly every day.

She said doctors believe only a cornea transplant will help her get her full sight back.

“It’s not going to be a quick fix,” she said. “They are going to try their best to see if I can do a transplant maybe a year from now.”

Williams said she needs a year to heal before she can be considered for a cornea transplant. She and her fiance are hosting an upcoming fundraiser to help cover her medical bills that she said now stretch past $100,000.

“I think that’s my best thing to do, to stay really positive and focus on getting better,” said Williams. “In my opinion there’s no point looking back.”

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