Posts tagged with "asthma"

Kaelen Felix illustrates Twin Towers for 360 Magazine

How Has 9/11 Changed America?

September 11, 2001 will forever remain etched in the memories of Americans. Almost 3,000 innocent lives were lost during the deadly 9/11 terror attack. No one saw it coming until two planes hijacked by terrorists crashed into New York’s World Trade Center.

Terrorists aboard a third plane hovered around the Pentagon while the fourth crashed in Pennsylvania. And this was the beginning of significant changes in America’s history. Nearly everything changed in a bid to make America safe. Below are several things that changed after the terrorist attack.

Start Of War On Terror

The 9/11 terrorist attack on U.S. soil marked the beginning of America’s war on terror. Before then, American troops were home. But a month after the attack, American troops were deployed to Afghanistan. Their main objective was reining in al-Qaeda militia – an outlawed terror group – behind the terrorist attack in the U.S.

In an address to Congress nine days after the attack, declared a global war on terror.

“Our war on terror begins with al Qaeda, but it does not end there. It will not end until every terrorist group of global reach has been found, stopped, and defeated,” Bush’s resolute stand read.

The U.S. troops sustained a long war in dismantling the Taliban government supporting al-Qaeda. It is the most protracted military campaign in the annals of U.S. history. And it didn’t end here. Military troops from the U.S. in 2003 invaded Iraq intending to dethrone Saddam Hussein. Hussein was the leader at the time and was producing weapons for the Taliban forces.

Twenty years later, about 8,000 US troops are still in Afghanistan, taming the Taliban insurgency.

Health Complications

Residents of lower Manhattan in New York reported increasing cases of Ground Zero respiratory diseases five months after the terror attack. Some of the 9/11 related illnesses came as a result of pulverization. When the World Trade Center collapsed, all materials in the building became fine dust spreading all over Manhattan.

The World Trade Center Health Program certifies that there are more cases of respiratory diseases since the attack in the area. Further, other ailments certified by the program include asthma, anxiety, post-traumatic stress disorder, cancer, depression, rhinosinusitis, and sleep apnea.

Onset Of Deportations

The Department of Homeland Security didn’t exist before September 11, 2001. President Bush formed it in 2002, working closely with the U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE). Deportations rose exponentially during Barack Obama’s administration, having the highest numbers. Between 2009 and 2010, nearly 400,000 people were deported.

Between 1999 and 2001, there were at least 200,000 annual deportations. But they doubled after the 9/11 terror attack.

Airport Security More Elaborate

In 2001, you would wander around the airport in the U.S. without much fuss. Today, you need a ticket to do this. And proper scrutiny of your passenger I.D. is undertaken before boarding a flight. A thorough body check happens today, and you must remove your shoes and your belt. Back then, none of this happened. Security is now elaborate – nothing is ignored. Not even the vaguest intelligence report.

Anti-Muslim Bias

Between 2015 and 2016, FBI data indicates 91 cases of assault stemming from anti-Muslim bias. In contrast to 2001, after the 9/11 attack, this number grew. Americans perceive Islam as a religion advocating for war. Religious discrimination is still a thing in America. The profiling of Muslims continues amid efforts to change the narrative that they are peace-loving.

The aftermath of the 9/11 terror attack in the U.S. in 2001 has a good and an ugly side. In terms of safety, it is a plus for the people. More elaborate security systems are in place today. But America is still in the war two decades later; this is a sad reminder of the aftereffect of the most significant terror attack in the land.

Steps Linked to Reduced Medical Costs

Proactive Steps Linked To Reduced Medical Costs, Hospital Visits for Children With Asthma

A new study looking at data from tens of thousands of children with asthma finds that several widely available interventions are associated with both reduced medical costs and a reduced likelihood that the children will need to visit an emergency room or stay in the hospital.

“This work shows that you can improve the quality of life for children with asthma and you can reduce government spending by implementing these proactive interventions,” says Julie Swann, lead author of the study. Swann is the department head and A. Doug Allison Distinguished Professor of the Fitts Department of Industrial and Systems Engineering at North Carolina State University.

The researchers looked at data from 2010 and 2011 on more than 70,000 children with asthma enrolled in the Medicaid programs in New York and Michigan. The researchers focused on four interventions: asthma self-management education (ASME); flu vaccine; the use of spacers, which are low-cost plastic tubes that improve the performance of inhalers; and the use of nebulizers, which are devices that convert liquid medicine into an aerosol that patients can inhale.

Specifically, the researchers analyzed the data to understand the extent to which each of these interventions was associated with three outcomes: asthma-related visits to the emergency room; asthma-related visits to a primary-care physician; and asthma-related stays in the hospital. The researchers also assessed the extent to which each intervention influenced costs associated with each child’s asthma medication and so-called “utilization costs” – which are the costs associated with other aspects of a child’s asthma treatment, such as the cost of visiting a primary-care provider or hospital.

To address these questions, the researchers plugged the healthcare data into models that allowed them to assess the impact of each intervention separately, compared to no intervention.

“One of the key findings, which should be of interest to policymakers, is that all four interventions were associated with lower medication costs and utilization costs,” Swann says.

And while the numbers varied between states, the decreases in cost could be substantial. For example, being vaccinated against the flu was associated with a 16.4% reduction in utilization expenses and a 15.6% reduction in medication expenses for children in New York. 

“There can be significant cost reductions associated with a fairly inexpensive intervention,” Swann says.

“Our results suggest that ASME training, and the use of spacers and nebulizers, are also associated with significant decreases in both emergency room visits and hospitalizations,” says study co-author Pinar Keskinocak. “And the flu vaccine helps reduce the number of visits to a child’s primary care provider.” Keskinocak is the William W. George Chair and Professor in Georgia Tech’s H. Milton Stewart School of Industrial and Systems Engineering and the director of the Center for Health and Humanitarian Systems at Georgia Tech.

“It’s important to note that we looked at the impact of these outcomes separately while accounting for other interventions,” Swann says. “You would expect that the more of these proactive interventions a child has, the greater the positive impact we would expect to see on both their health and on what Medicaid would be asked to spend on their care.”

The study, “Estimating the Impact of Self-Management Education, Influenza Vaccines, Nebulizers, and Spacers on Healthcare Utilization and Expenditures for Medicaid-Enrolled Children with Asthma,” is published in the Journal of Asthma.

The paper was co-authored by Fatma Melike Yildirim, a Ph.D. student at Georgia Tech; Paul Griffin, the St. Vincent Health Chair of Healthcare Engineering at Purdue University; and Jean O’Connor of Emory University.

The work was done with support from the Center for Health and Humanitarian Systems and the William W. George Endowment at Georgia Tech, and the Edward P. Fitts and the A. Doug Allison Distinguished Professorship at NC State.

Disability illustration for 360 MAGAZINE

What Qualifies You for Social Security Disability Benefits?

To qualify for Social Security Disability benefits, you must have a qualifying disability and have worked in jobs that required you to pay into the Social Security system. If you meet these requirements and your doctor says you won’t be able to work for one year or longer, you may be able to receive benefits until you can work again—if that ever happens. 

So which conditions qualify you for disability benefits? Read this and see if your diagnosis is on the list. If it’s not, don’t worry, your condition may still be qualifying. 

  • Asthma
  • Anxiety 
  • Autism
  • Back injuries
  • Blindness
  • Cerebral palsy
  • Coronary artery disease
  • COPD
  • Deafness
  • Disorders of bone marrow failure
  • Epilepsy
  • Heart failure
  • Hemolytic anemias
  • HIV/AIDS
  • Irritable bowel disorder
  • Intellectual disorder
  • Kidney disease
  • Liver disease
  • Lupus
  • Marfan syndrome
  • Multiple sclerosis
  • Parkinson’s disease
  • Rheumatoid arthritis
  • Sjogren’s syndrome

Any disease, injury, or disorder that prevents you from working for at least 12 months could potentially be a qualifying condition, depending on the severity. You’ll need to discuss your condition with a Social Security caseworker to determine whether or not you qualify. 

There are certain conditions that will automatically qualify you for benefits so you can begin receiving payments right away without having to go through the approval process first. These include early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, Lou Gherig’s disease, stage IV or inflammatory breast cancer, cancer of the pancreas or gallbladder, and several other cancers.

How to Apply

If you want the Social Security disability process to run smoothly and efficiently, there are some things you need to know before your first appointment. To get the process started immediately, come prepared. Bring your Social Security number and those of your spouse and children, your W-2 information from the past year, and discharge papers if you were in the military.

The first thing you’ll need to do after you’ve gathered your information is to fill out a Social Security Disability report form. You can download this from their website and fill it out in advance. This form will ask you for information like your doctors’ contact details, the medications you’re taking, your past jobs, and any claims you’ve filed.

The next step in the process is to schedule your appointment with the Social Security Administration. You can make your appointment over the phone by calling 1-800-772-1213 or schedule your appointment online. 

Another thing you can do to speed up the application process is to get a copy of your medical records from your physician in advance. Once you’ve requested your record, your doctor has 30 days to get it to you. Many doctors will turn it around faster than that, but it’s still smart to request it at least 30 days ahead of your appointment. 

You can download this Disability Starter Kit to learn more about what to expect throughout the process. This helpful guide contains information, a worksheet, and a checklist that’ll help you prepare.

If Your Benefits Are Denied

According to the Social Security Disability lawyers at Bader Scott, in many cases the initial claim will be denied by Claims Examiners, who often make mistakes due to a lack of experience. With an attorney’s help, you may be able to successfully appeal so your application for benefits can be settled on favorable terms. 

You can apply for an appeal hearing on the Social Security website, but be forewarned, you’re going to be waiting for this hearing for a long time. On average, the wait time for an appeal will be twelve months or longer. If your appeal goes well and your benefits are approved, you’ll get retroactive benefits either in payments or a lump sum. 

You will have 60 days after you receive the notice of denial to file your claim. If you are denied, you should get on this right away. Your benefits may depend on it.

AUTHOR: Cheryl Roy

NasalGuard®

A Topical Gel that Reduces Inhalation of Harmful Airborne Contaminants Makes National Debut

Perfect for Flu and Cough Cold Season, Indoor Pollutants, Pet Allergies and More

Trutek Corp. announces the launch of NasalGuard®Airborne Particle Blocker®. NasalGuard is an electrostatic topical nasal gel that prevents airborne particles from entering the nose. The product is drug-free and safe for pregnant or nursing women, children, and those concerned about potential drug interactions with other medications. It is a perfect solution to guard you against the Flu/Cough/Cold and all indoor pollutants this winter season.

NasalGuard protects against virtually all types of contaminants in any location. Users can count on it to work in their homes, offices, and other environments where airborne particles may present a health hazard. The product works immediately upon application and lasts up to six hours. NasalGuard gel uses a cationic (positively-charged) polymer that creates a safe electrostatic field around the nasal passages that traps oppositely charged particles and repels similarly charged particles to reduce inhalation of most harmful airborne particles before they enter your body. NasalGuard gel can be purchased online, Amazon or by calling 855-627-2545 in a 3 gram tube for $11.85.

Every day, people are exposed to millions of airborne particles in crowded, confined spaces such as airports, airplanes, transportation centers and subways, homes and offices, hospitals, doctor’s offices and movie theaters. Using NasalGuard gel regularly will help protect against the immediate and long-term risk of breathing harmful contaminated air.

There has been a growing public health concern globally regarding the adverse health effects caused by the inhalation of microscopic airborne particles. Asthma, diabetes, lung cancer and cardiovascular disease are all proven to be linked to air contamination. In response to this widespread problem, Trutek has successfully advanced their technology which was originally focused on blocking allergens from entering the nose for preventing allergy symptoms. This breakthrough provides a greater electrostatic blocking effect that is effective against a much wider spectrum of microscopic indoor and outdoor contaminants including mold, pollen, pet dander, pollution, and virus-sized particles.

NasalGuard technology was invented by Ashok Wahi, the founder and CEO of Trutek Corp., an R&D Product Development Company. An engineer by training, Ashok was inspired to create this technology to aid his own daughter, Aikta, who suffered from severe allergies. “I developed this product because of the vital need to have some kind of personal air filter that was drug free and easy to use,” says Ashok Wahi.

About Trutek Corp.

Trutek Corp. has been marketing patented NasalGuard technology all over the world since 1995. Over 12 million tubes have been sold with no reports of adverse effects.

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