HHS issues guide for using call centers in emergencies

first_imgNov 8, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently released a guide to help communities retool their health-related call centers into systems for meeting the needs of the public in homes or shelters during emergencies such as a pandemic or bioterrorist attack.Published by the HHS Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ), the 224-page guide is aimed at boosting the capabilities of poison-control centers, nurse advice lines, drug information centers, and health agency hotlines. It focuses on four main scenarios: anthrax attacks, pandemic influenza, plague, and food contamination.”Community call centers have long been a credible source that people can turn to for health information,” said AHRQ Director Carolyn M. Clancy, MD, in an Oct 26 press release from the agency. “Leveraging these existing resources will allow clinics, outpatient departments, and emergency departments to devote their attention to caring for those in most need of help.”The report was developed for the AHRQ by Denver Health, a member of the agency’s Accelerating Change and Transformation in Organizations and Networks (ACTION) project, the press release said. A national advisory panel of experts in emergency call center services, public health, preparedness planning, and other fields helped draft the guidance.Few resources exist to guide the development of emergency call centers, the report says. However, the authors were able to draw from published reports on the experiences of officials in Toronto and Taiwan during the SARS epidemic.Guidance in the report assumes that the community infrastructure would remain intact so that call centers would be operable. Though the document doesn’t address absenteeism among call-center workers, it covers features, such as interactive response systems, that might reduce the number of employees needed to staff the centers.For communities that have little healthcare call-center capacity, the authors offer suggestions on how to enlist the help of local corporate call-center systems.The report focuses on six response capabilities:Health information to augment risk communications and alleviate the burden on the healthcare system; call centers could direct callers toward medication- or vaccine-dispensing locations and answer frequently asked questionsDisease or injury surveillance to help health officials identify emerging health threatsTriage or decision support to reduce unnecessary hospital visits and reduce costsQuarantine and isolation support to those self-treating or receiving medical care in their homesOutpatient drug information and adverse-event reportingMental health assistance and referralAuthors of the report also developed a tool set to enable public health officials to assess the call-center demand they would face during a public health crisis and what resources they would need to meet it. The set includes checklists and Microsoft Excel worksheets.See also:Oct 26 AHRQ press releasehttp://archive.ahrq.gov/news/press/pr2007/callctrpr.htmAHRQ report on adapting call centers for crisis supporthttp://archive.ahrq.gov/prep/callcenters/last_img read more

Westhill girls track earns sectional Class B-1 crown

first_imgIt all ended well for the Westhill girls track and field team as it held off Camden to earn the Section III Class B-1 championship Thursday at Chittenango High School.With 110 points, the Warriors finished just ahead of the Blue Devils’ second-place total of 104 points as the Westhill boys finished third with 97 points behind host Chittenango and Camden.In one event, the 100-meter hurdles, Westhill’s girls got 20 points as Ashley Heffernan won in 16.11 seconds, with Lauren Holstein third in 17.46 seconds and Lauren Marshall (17.61) in fourth place. Mesa-Espinosa got to second place in the 100-meter dash in 12.81 seconds behind Syracuse ITC’s Fannie Kumeh (12.60), also nearly winning the 200-meter dash as her 26.19 seconds trailed Camden’s Mackenzie Mix (26.18) by one-hundredth of a second.Lennah Abraham was second in the discus, throwing it 112’1”, and added a sixth-place shot put toss of 30’4”. Brigid Heinrich was fifth in the discus with 89’4”.Bolesh was fourth in the 400-meter dash in 1:00.36, while Bendall needed 1:11.54 to finish third in the 400 hurdles and was sixth in the pole vault, topping 8 feet. Margaret Hunt, clearing 4’8”, claimed third place in the high jump.Kaylin Battista, with 1,994 points, was fourth in the pentathlon, ahead of Quinn Mannion (1,876) in fifth place. The Warriors also finished fourth in the 4×800 relay in 10:32.96.For the Westhill boys, the most success came from field events such as the shot put, which Evan Ballard won by throwing it 45’ ½” as Ben Helfeld was third with 43’11 ½” and Charlie Doebert (40’10 ½”) was fifth.Ballard swept both throwing contests as his discus throw of 122’11” edged Camden’s Jon Smith (121’7”), with Doebert getting third place by heaving it 115’11” and Helfeld fourth with 115’9”.Elliott Rouse cleared 5’10” in the high jump and gained second place,Dan Washburn was victorious in the 3,000-meter steeplechase, going 10:27.5 to beat the field by nearly half a minute as Scott MacBain finished eighth in 11:47.1.MacBain, Jacob Fricano, Brian Kenny and Brendan Rewakowski were second in the 4×800 in 8:37.24.Tom Howard got third place in the 100 sprint  in 11.63 seconds, added a third in the 200- in 23.03 seconds and helped the Warriors take third place in the 4×100 relay in 45.90 seconds.Washburn had a fourth-place mile of 4:34.49 as Westhill finished fifth in the 4×400 in 3:46.52. Andrew Centore was fifth in the triple jump, going 39’11 ¼”.Luke Kelly was fourth in the pentathlon with 2,246 points as Michael Savage (1,872) was sixth. Will Remillard was sixth in the 400 hurdles in 1:04.39, with Will Thornton sixth in the 800 in 2:04.82.Solvay tied Oneida and Christian Brothers Academy for sixth place in the boys sectional B-1 meet with 33 points, including a victory for Brendon Carolina in the long jump as he went 20’9 ½” to beat Oneida’s Zander Farr (20’6”) for the top spot.Carolina, X’Zavier Morris, Allen Cawthon and Elijah Wright were second (45.77 seconds) to Camden (45.38) in the 4×100 as Justice Shirley was fourth in the high jump, clearing 5’8”.Carolina was fourth in the 100 in 11.68 seconds, with Cawthon (11.73) sixth as he also got eighth place in the 400 sprint. Michael Pellizzari was fifth in the discus with a throw of 115’8”.The Solvay girls had 14.5 points, most of them from Kyra Crossett winning the high jump by clearing 4’10” as Allison Dooher tied for fifth and Erica Bagozzi was fifth (8’6”) in the pole vault.Share this:FacebookTwitterLinkedInRedditComment on this Story Heffernan got second place in the pole vault, clearing 9 feet 6 inches, and went on to finish third in the long jump, going 16’2 ¾” as Ashley Bolesh was sixth with 15’4 ½”.Another key win came in the 4×100 relay, where Heffernan, Katherine Evans, Erica Gangemi and Angie Mesa-Espinosa claimed a thriller over Vernon-Verona-Sherrill, edging the Red Devils by one-hundredth of a second, 51.95 seconds to 51.96. Evans also finished sixth in the 800-meter run in 2:37.09.Just as important was the Warriors taking the 4×400 relay late in the meet. Mesa-Espinosa, Evans, Bolesh and Lauren Bendall went 4:12.07 to edge South Jefferson (4:12.30) as Camden settled for third place.center_img Tags: Solvaytrack and fieldWesthilllast_img read more

Zak: Wisconsin football, perpetually on the brink

first_img[Steve Gotter/ The Badger Herald] Senior linebacker Chris Borland misses a tackle. A number of offensive and defensive miscues proved costly for the Badgers in Columbus.Wisconsin found itself in a familiar situation Saturday night in Columbus, Ohio, owning possession and a one-score deficit in the fourth quarter. One minute, 29 seconds remained on the clock and while the Badgers were without timeouts, they were not without a chance to drive 90 yards for the game-tying score — a seemingly comical outcome just 10 minutes prior.The Badgers had slowly inched back into the game after the Buckeyes led 31-14, the game clock trending toward the fourth quarter. A back James White 17-yard touchdown run and Kyle French 42-yard field goal gave them a fighter’s chance. They were on the brink of a special comeback.However, that drive was thwarted by an Ohio State hurry and a James White fumble, and as Joel Stave was unable to find Jeff Duckworth on fourth down and four yards to go, the Badgers fell a few plays short at Ohio Stadium. That familiar situation Wisconsin found itself in ended much like it has for the Badgers the last few seasons.The opening minutes and the series of mistakes to follow were different but the final scene looked much the same as Wisconsin teetered off the wrong edge of achievement.It happened three times in the Rose Bowl. It happened in overtime in 2012 and on backbreaking Hail Mary passes a season before. Saturday night was no different for the cardinal and white. With each chapter, Wisconsin football shows it is perpetually on the brink of something special. They just haven’t shown that “special” is something they might actually achieve.Each time Wisconsin has had the opportunity to stand at the top, something slips. Redshirt senior wide reciever Jared Abbrederis fumbles on the sideline in Pasadena. Former quarterback Danny O’Brien botches a handoff to former running back Montee Ball in Lincoln. Braxton Miller fires a long touchdown in the last few minutes, and redshirt senior defense back Shelton Johnson is left speechless.Déjà vu occurred Saturday night at the end of the first half. Miller took a prayer-filled  snap, launching a pass into the end zone. Once again, Wisconsin fans saw their safety in retreat form, the back of his jersey in empty pursuit as the Buckeyes stole seven points before halftime.That safety, senior Dezmen Southward, continually referred to it as “just a bad play” that really bit the Badgers. It was one of the plays that change the ultimate complexion of a game and one that ultimately cost Wisconsin in a hard-fought loss.“That’s been the story of my career, honestly since I’ve been here,” Southward said. Since he made his first tackle as a redshirt freshman in 2010, Wisconsin has lost 13 times. Only once have the Badgers lost by more than one score (at Michigan State in 2010). It’s been an epidemic where Wisconsin plays well enough to win, but just a small percentage of plays leave them in peril.“And that 10 percent can burn you,” Southward said. “If you’re good on defense 95 percent of the time, you can still lose the game. At the end of the day, you have to strive for those five plays, get it up to 100 percent some way … Striving to get there is the only way you can win some games like this.”His all-Big Ten teammate echoed the same idea.“We have the ability,” redshirt senior linebacker Chris Borland said. “It’s just a matter of those five or six plays. Every close game has them. We didn’t make them tonight and Ohio State did.”Game-changing plays are an understood staple of football, but the game-changing plays witnessed at Camp Randall, Pasadena and across the Big Ten have remained largely out of the Badgers’ favor (Russell Wilson and Duckworth would argue differently). The amount of similar occurrences has turned mere flukes into an ugly trend.But for Wisconsin, it wasn’t just game-changing scores keeping them on edge. Discipline was another wound in the Badgers’ side Saturday.Wisconsin was flagged a season-high eight times for 54 yards against OSU. The yardage may not have been ultra-costly, but the moments were crippling. Yards gained on first and second down were drawn back with five false starts while holding call eliminated a Wisconsin first down early on.Stave was pretty special finding Abbrederis throughout the night, but six penalties on the guys lined up in front of him made each of his drives unnecessarily adventurous.Just two plays later one of those discipline errors showed its ugliest face in the second quarter. Wisconsin appeared blessed with its first break of the game when Leo Musso recovered a muffed punt by Buckeye receiver Corey Brown. However, the yellow laundry found the green grass in the Wisconsin backfield.The Badgers didn’t have enough men on the line of scrimmage, leaving five in the backfield, negating the fumble recovery in OSU territory. Wisconsin punted again, and the Buckeyes started their field goal-scoring drive at the UW 47.“It’s another huge play in the football game,” head coach Gary Andersen said in his postgame press conference. “It’s inexcusable.”For a team holding Big Ten championship aspirations, playing its greatest competitor on the road for a virtual two-game lead in the Leaders division, he’s probably right. It is probably inexcusable to not be properly lined up the same way they would be for a punt play they’ve certainly rehearsed hundreds of times at Camp Randall or the McClain Center.But maybe that’s just part of the enigma with Wisconsin football over the past few years. The bad breaks seem to tally one after the other, and while there seems to be an echelon of special within the Badgers’ grasp, who knows if they’ll ever reach it.Sean is a senior majoring in journalism and communication arts. Does it feel like Wisconsin is on the verge of something special? Is it too late already in the 2013 season? Let him know on Twitter @sean_zak or with an email to szak@badgerherald.com.last_img read more

DD Travel: Check out these amazing top value City Breaks!

first_imgYou can find some cracking city breaks across Europe with a little bit of searching.But why go searching?Now you can unwind this Winter with a great value getaway from Atlantic Travel in one of these stunning European Cities. These amazing value City Break Deals for 2016 come in from just €128pp for 3 Nights!City break holidays have become a great way of exploring vibrant cities all over Europe, the UK and the US. If nothing here takes your fancy, don’t worry. We can create your very own personalised getaway, We offer a great range of great value city breaks and last-minute holidays from Dublin, Belfast, Derry and Knock, all with an extensive choice of central hotels.With so many destiniation to choose from let Atlantic Travel find the best one for you so all you need to do is start your collection of fantastic travel memories.Why not try…….. BudapestOften referred to as the Pearl of the Danube, Budapest is rich in history and heritage yet full of youthful energy and vibrancy. It is comprised of twin cities; the older of the two cities, Buda, sits on the west side, while Pest is on the east. In between flows the Majestic Danude with the gret Chain Bridge linking the two together. The beautiful old Buda castle is perched high above the city while labyrinth style caves lie deep below the city waiting to be explored. Budapest has more thermal hot springs than any other city in Europe making it the best city to go to for a Spa city break.Along with being affordable, its plentiful history and culture and a buzzing nightlife scene and countless restaurants and bistros offering local cuisine, Budapest is definitely a city worth visiting if you are looking for a city break destination.Budapest 23 November 3 nights €128ppFlights from Dublin3 nights in 3* Hotel 4/5 tripadvisor rating – City Hotel RingFor only €47pp extra you can avail of the following:3 hour city tour1 hour river cruise on the DanubeHotel pick up for tourWelcome drink on cruiseOr Prague….!It is hard not to fall in love with Prague. Not only is it visually stunning but with extraordinary cultural sights and great night life, it is not surprising that it is one of Ireland’s top city break destinations.Often compared to Paris in terms of beauty, Prague has architectural masterpieces untouched by war or natural disasters. This is a rarity these days and walking around the city you cant help but admire your surroundings. Wenceslas Square is the main gathering point, full of designer shops, cafes and bars, it’s always buzzing with a great atmosphere. The medieval Charles Bridge connects the old town to the impressive Castle and is filled with artists selling paintings and caricatures. Prague is compact and easy to navigate and unlike many large European cities you will get to tick the main tourist attractions off your list and by the end of your stay you will feel like you really know the city. There is plenty of bold to go with the beautiful – it has some of the best nightlife you are likely to find in any European city. And lets not forget the beer – some would say Prague has the best beer in the world, well it’s worth investigating anyway! Prague 22 November 3 nights €156ppFlights from Dublin3 nights in a 4* Hotel 4.5/5 tripadvisor rating – Fusion Hotel PragueFor only €12pp you can add on a one hour sightseeing cruise on River Vltava!What about Krakow?Cracking KrakowKrakow is home to Europe’s largest market square. It’s stunning architecture combined with vibrant night life make it an ideal choice for a city break.The old town is packed with impressive churches and museums. Make sure you try the basement clubs and enjoy some live music, the back streets are full of them and some cracking restaurants too. The Jewish quarter, Kazimierz is now buzzing with hundreds of restaurants, pubs and clubs and has a great laid back atmosphere. Take one of the free guided walking tours to discover what happened to the Jews during the second world war, before ending up at Oskar Schindler’s factory. Although harrowing, it is extremely informative and worthwhile. Of course you can also take a trip to nearby Auschwitz (price is included below) if you are feeling up to it.Krakow 22 November 3 nights €153ppFlights from Dublin3 nights in a 4* Hotel 4.5/5 tripadvisor rating – Ester HotelAdd on €39pp for Auschwitz – Birkinenau Memorial & Museum Tour Or lovely Lisbon…..Lovely Lisbon.Lisbon is finally getting the praise it deserves and it is slowly becoming one of Europe’s top city break destinations. It is a fantasitc city, so cosmopolitan and chic with an endless supply of sights to see. The city is very easy to navigate and if you don’t fancy walking it there are fantastic old trams that will bring you around all the highlights. There is an abundance of amazing resturants where you can watch the evening sun bow its head with a glass of local wine in hand. There is plenty to see in Lisbon itself, but if you want to travel, you can take the train to the coastal towns of Cascais or Estoril or explore the UNESCO world heritage city of Sintra.Lisbon 10th October 3 nights €183pp (20pp)Flights from Dublin3 nights in a 4/5 tripadvisor rated hotel – Luxe Hotel by Turim HotelsAdd only €20pp for a Hop on-Hop off City Bus TourAtlantic Travel in Letterkenny.We are here Monday – Friday from 9.30am until 5.15pm and Saturdays from 10am until 4pm to help you find your perfect holiday. If you can’t get into the office please call us on 074 9126193 or drop us an email on info@atlantictravel.ieDon’t forget to give our facebook page to keep up to date with all our best offers! These offers are subject to availability and were correct at time of going to press.DD Travel: Check out these amazing top value City Breaks! was last modified: July 27th, 2016 by StephenShare this:Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on LinkedIn (Opens in new window)Click to share on Reddit (Opens in new window)Click to share on Pocket (Opens in new window)Click to share on Telegram (Opens in new window)Click to share on WhatsApp (Opens in new window)Click to share on Skype (Opens in new window)Click to print (Opens in new window)last_img read more

Judicial Investigation Police raid hospital in Social Security System fraud probe

first_imgRelated posts:Authorities arrest lawyer with ties to ruling Citizen Action Party on fraud suspicion 17 arrested during La Sele’s giant homecoming celebration Police seize 4 million contraband cigarettes Public hospitals begin offering online appointments this week Prosecutors from Costa Rica’s Fraud Tribunal on Tuesday conducted three raids to gather evidence in a fraud investigation at Calderón Guardia Hospital in the capital.Judicial Investigation Police agents simultaneously raided the hospital, the main offices of the Social Security System, or Caja, and the offices of medical supply company Synthes. Investigators suspect the company may have fraudulently billed the Caja for $2.3 million in medical supplies. The alleged scheme included billing for 2,022 orthopedic devices used on Calderón Guardia patients from 2010-2011.According to a prosecutor’s report, alleged irregularities include surgeries performed on dead or nonexistent patients and the use of orthopedic devices in procedures that don’t require them, such as gynecological surgeries.Caja financial officials spotted the irregularities in the billing, and ordered that payments to Synthes be stopped. That led to the ongoing fraud investigation, prosecutors said. The investigation began last year and targets at least three people, whose names were not disclosed. Facebook Commentslast_img read more

The Secret Life of Objects

first_img“If only the walls could talk” is a phrase that constantly sparks the imagination. Well, now it is a reality.Seth Goldstein of SocialMedia Networks and Billy Chasen, creator of chartbeat have now founded stickybits, the “fun and social way to attach digital content to real world objects”. What you do is find a bar code, or buy some sticky bar codes (20 for $10), and scan it with your iphone. Each bar code is programmable by the first person who scans it and attaches some content. You can upload a picture, message, audio clip, whatever you want. Each additional person who scans the object will see the programmers’ message, and are then able to add to it. For brands, a future business model is to charge brands to claim their bar codes and place their own messages on it first (content marketing strategy).Just think of the possibilities! Essentially, I could stick a bar code on the Eiffel Tower or the Pyramid of Giza and in a sense “own” a little digital piece of it. Or more practically, attach your resume or pitch to your business card (business development services and personal recruiting support), attach a video to a birthday card, make in inventory of old photos, or just attach a bar code to a bottle and see where it ends up.AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterShare to PrintPrintShare to EmailEmailShare to MoreAddThislast_img read more