Avian Influenza (Bird Flu): It’s Resurgence, Risks, and Treatment

The Importance of Timely Antibiotic Intervention

They call it the bird flu, but it also affects other animals, and people.

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Making an Unwelcome Comeback

Back in the mid to late 2000’s the bird flu was on a devastating path around the world – killing 53% of humans who contracted it. States of emergency were declared, experimental vaccines developed, and antiviral drugs (such as Oseltamivir) were stockpiled. Since then it was pretty much relegated to wild bird populations, until recently. 

The bird flu has been around for decades and is a constant health risk to wild bird populations, but it normally stays there, amongst wild birds. In more recent years however, it has infiltrated other birds, including commercial poultry animals, and beyond. 

The Current Situation:

In recent months, the world has been grappling with a concerning resurgence of the avian influenza, commonly known as bird flu. This highly pathogenic influenza results in a viral infection, primarily affecting birds, but has raised alarms due to its potential to spread to other birds and mammals, including humans.

The H5N1 strain has been affecting wild birds in the United States since about 1996, but lately has also spread to poultry farms, leading to the culling of millions of birds to prevent further spread. But this has only been partially successful. 

In late March 2024, the virus was detected in dairy cattle in Texas and Kansas, marking the first time it was found in mammals in the U.S. this year.

And there have been two confirmed human cases in the U.S. so far this year. 

The current outbreak of bird flu has been primarily attributed to the H5N1 and the more recent H5N8 strains of the virus. These strains are highly pathogenic, meaning they can cause severe illness and death in birds. The virus is primarily spread through contact with infected birds or their droppings, though it can also be transmitted through contaminated surfaces or objects. It was exposure due to close proximity to infected animals that caused the two human cases. One case involved a worker at a farm with infected cows, and the other case involved a worker at a poultry facility.

 

Risks to Humans:

While H5N1 can infect humans through close contact with infected birds or mammals, the current risk to the general public is considered relatively low. The CDC’s avian influenza risk information changes, and gets updated regularly though.  However it is a non-zero risk. The two human cases in the U.S. this year involved direct contact with infected animals, but there is currently no evidence of sustained human-to-human transmission. 

When contracted, the H5N1 strain in particular, has been known to cause severe respiratory illness in humans, with a potential for prolonged health complications if not treated effectively.

Another strain of concern, H5N8, has also shown the ability to infect humans. While human cases of H5N8 have been limited so far, the potential for the virus to mutate and become more transmissible among humans is a significant concern. 

Genetic changes in the virus have enabled the bird flu to spread from wild birds to poultry animals and other mammals, including livestock and humans. And while it doesn’t pose an immediate risk to the general public, the time to prepare yourself for it is before it gets worse – not after.

 

What can we do?

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While we can’t avoid wild birds or poultry altogether, here are some steps we can take to reduce the risks of infection:

 

  1. Avoid Contact with Sick or Dead Birds: Do not handle sick or dead birds, including poultry. If you must handle them, use gloves and other protective gear, and wash your hands thoroughly afterward.
  2. Practice Good Hygiene: Wash your hands frequently with soap and water, especially after handling birds or visiting places where birds are present. Avoid touching your face, especially your eyes, nose, and mouth, with unwashed hands.
  3. Cook Poultry Thoroughly: Ensure that poultry, including eggs, is cooked thoroughly before consumption. Cooking at temperatures of 165°F (74°C) kills the bird flu virus.
  4. Avoid Contaminated Surfaces: Avoid contact with surfaces or objects that may be contaminated with bird droppings or secretions.
  5. Limit Exposure to Live Birds: Minimize visits to live bird markets or farms where poultry are raised, especially in areas experiencing bird flu outbreaks.
  6. Stay Informed: Stay updated on the latest developments regarding bird flu outbreaks in your area and follow the advice of health authorities.
  7. Be equipped to treat an infection if it occurs. Keep an antiviral medication on hand. 

 

Antivirals treat Avian Influenza

Antiviral medications, such as Oseltamivir, remain the preferred intervention method for most influenzas including the bird flu. Stopping a viral infection as soon as possible yields the best outcome for patients, and having a medication kit that includes an antiviral is key to being able to intervene quickly in an infection. Early treatment means you’ll feel better faster, and have less disruption to your daily life. It also means you’ll reduce the likelihood of developing further complications.

Our Jase Case  – already full of life saving medications – is also completely customizable, and can be configured to include the antiviral Oseltamivir 75 mg (10 pack) so you have a weapon to wield against the bird flu (and other influenzas).

Customize your Jase Case today, for some certainty in an uncertain world. 

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Navigating Spring’s Waters: Hydration, Recreation, and the Risk of Giardia

The Importance of Timely Antibiotic Intervention

Even crystal clear water can conceal hidden hazards.

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Spring Brings water, water brings risks. 

With spring in full swing and temperatures rising, our thirst (pun intended) for water grows as well. This applies to both the need to stay hydrated and the desire to cool off in our pools, lakes and rivers. As we welcome this wave of water in our lives, it’s important to remember that exposure to hidden perils, such as water-borne illnesses like Giardia, also rises.

 

 

Giardia is the most common intestinal parasitic disease in the U.S. and affects about 1 million people a year.

 

Just how easy is it to get infected?

Giardia spreads very easily. While most commonly contracted through exposure to contaminated water, it can also be spread through contaminated food, surfaces, objects, and even exposure to a person infected with the parasite.

It’s not only potentially contaminated drinking water sources you have to worry about when camping or spending time in the outdoors, but also natural and man-made bodies of water you may use for swimming or water sports (lakes, ponds rivers, streams, public water supplies, wells, cisterns, swimming pools, water parks and spas).

Faucets can provide a false sense of security. Also of high concern is questionable tap water in certain areas you may travel to. Even if you don’t drink it, you may still likely use it for brushing your teeth or showering – which can potentially expose you to Giardia just the same.

What can you do? The best thing you can do to mitigate exposure is be cautious of the sources of the water you consume, and be aware of the potential animals in the surroundings of the water you swim and play in – as they likely use that water too.

Bring your own drinking water or only consume bottled water in places you travel to. If you must use tap water for drinking in a location you are unsure of, then boil the water, use a water filter, or purification tablets.

What if I get exposed to Giardia? Fortunately Giardia infection is not fatal, but can lead to complications in certain individuals if not treated. Reactive arthritis, irritable bowel syndrome, and recurring diarrhea that can last for years are among the worst prognoses one can be diagnosed with.

 

 

Exposure Rates are High, Effective Treatment is Available

Metronidazole for Treatment of Giardia Infections:

The good news is treatment for Giardiasis exists and is very effective. Metronidazole is the most common and potent medication for Giardia infection, but is not available over the counter. A 5-7 day course of Metronidazole tablets is usually enough to eliminate the infection and its symptoms in over 90% of patients.

Why you should have Metronidazole on hand:

In addition to treating parasitic Giardia infections, Metronidazole is also used to treat certain skin infections, rosacea, oral infections including infected gums or dental abscesses, and bacterial vaginosis and pelvic inflammatory infections.

While you can’t pick up Metronidazole at the store on your family weekend getaway, you can have it with you in our Jase Case, as one of the standard medications our kits come with.

Each standard Jase Case also comes with medications for other infections and illnesses including pneumonia, sinus infection, urinary tract infections, traveller’s diarrhea, Lyme disease, skin, infections and more.

And you can customize your Jase Case with over 30 available add on medications from EpiPens (anaphylaxis), to Ivermectin (parasitic infections), to treat just about anything you may encounter from Influenza (Oseltamivir) to Malaria (Atovaquone-Proguanil).

If there were a prescription for peace of mind, it would be a Jase Case.

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The Importance of Timely Antibiotic Intervention

The Importance of Timely Antibiotic Intervention

Accelerate healing through early treatment.

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The Key to Effective Infection Management: Early antibiotic intervention and at the right dose.

While aggressive antibiotic treatment with high dosages has been the go-to methodology of treatment historically, research by the National Institute of Health is challenging that assumption. This article published by the NIH states that the timing of antibiotics being administered, relative to the dosages, also plays a critical role in the duration of an infection.

Antibiotics are a cornerstone of modern medicine, a powerful tool in our fight against bacterial infections. But when it comes to their effectiveness, timing is everything – almost. Administering appropriate dose of antibiotics promptly can significantly improve a patient’s outcome, while delays can have serious consequences.

 

The Power of Precise Timing and Dosing:

Boosting Survival Rates: Studies consistently show a strong link between delays in antibiotic treatment and higher mortality rates, particularly in life-threatening infections like sepsis. Each hour of delay can significantly decrease a patient’s chances of survival. Early antibiotics give the body a fighting chance to overcome the infection before it becomes overwhelming.

Targeting the Enemy Effectively: Antibiotics work best when bacteria are actively multiplying. Early administration at the correct dosage targets them during this vulnerable stage, stopping their spread and allowing the immune system to clear them more effectively. An incorrect dose, whether too low or too high, can allow the bacteria to survive and potentially develop resistance to the antibiotics, making treatment more challenging.

Protecting Vital Organs: Severe infections can cause significant damage to organs like the lungs, kidneys, and heart. Prompt antibiotic treatment at the recommended dose helps control the infection and minimize this damage, leading to a better overall outcome for the patient. Early intervention and proper dosing can prevent complications and the need for additional, potentially more intensive treatments.

 

The Dangers of Delay and Incorrect Dosage:

A Race Against Time and Strength: Delays in antibiotic treatment or taking incorrect dosages can significantly worsen a patient’s prognosis. The longer the bacteria have to multiply and potentially develop resistance, the harder it is to eradicate the infection.

Breeding Resistance: Incorrect doses, particularly under-dosing, create an environment where some bacteria can survive and potentially develop resistance to the antibiotic. This can have serious consequences for future treatment of that particular infection, not just for the individual patient but also for the wider community.

Increased Healthcare Costs: Complications arising from delayed or incorrect antibiotic use can lead to additional procedures, hospital stays, and other interventions, significantly increasing healthcare costs.

A Longer Road to Recovery: Delayed treatment or incorrect antibiotic dosages extend the infection’s course, leading to a longer recovery time with ongoing discomfort and disability for the patient.

 

Continue to Take the Full Regimen of Antibiotics:

It’s essential to complete the full course of antibiotics, even if symptoms begin to improve. This ensures all bacteria are eliminated, preventing relapse and the development of antibiotic resistance. Whenever taking medications, adhere strictly to your physician’s instructions.

Antibiotic resistance can occur when the infection is only partially treated. It is crucial to continue taking the entire regimen of antibiotics according to the instructions, even if you begin to feel better. If the infection has been allowed to become antibiotic-resistant from not taking the full schedule of antibiotics, the worsened illness can lead to serious complications.

 

 

Ensuring Access to Antibiotics

Administering antibiotics quickly is a prudent theory, but sometimes not a practical reality. CBS News recently reported on the widening gaps of mortality rates between city and rural residents due to difficult access to healthcare in rural communities. A local PBS Station in Washington said that rural patients often have to travel several hours from home to seek medical attention, which can lead to far worse patient outcomes. The difficulty in accessing treatment while on a trip can be so burdensome that the CDC has entire page devoted to getting healthcare while traveling.

Considering the timely need to administer antibiotics and the sometimes prolonged access to healthcare, the only way to ensure that you don’t fall in the gap is by having your own emergency antibiotics on hand at home. This is why we made the Jase Case – to give you access to treatment when healthcare is inaccessible.

Antibiotics are the preferred treatment for bacterial infections, but do not help treat viral infections like the Avian Influenza (Bird Flu) – which has seen a recent resurgence and is now infecting humans (CDC). Anti-viral drugs such as Oseltamivir (TamiFlu) are necessary for Influenza strains including Bird Flu. Oseltamivir 75mg (10 pack) is just one of the many available add-on medications we offer to add to your Jase Case to increase its usable scenarios.

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Tips for Getting Our Kids to Live Their Healthiest Lives

Kids are superb little copycats; let’s give them some positive things to mimic.

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Healthy kids, Happy Families: Empowering Children for Lifelong Wellness 

Before they start making their own decisions, kids will begin copying ours. So the more health conscious examples we set, the happier and healthier we’ll both be. But, in a world of sugary treats and screen time, getting them on board with healthy habits can at times feel like a battle.

It’s also important to educate them about health. Teach your child about the importance of good nutrition, physical activity, hygiene, and other aspects of health. Help them understand how their choices will impact their well-being.

Here are some tips to help your little ones embrace a super healthy lifestyle, all while having fun!

 

Fueling Your Little Superheros:

 

  • Lead by example. If they see you making healthy choices, they’re more likely to follow suit. Stock your pantry with fruits, veggies, and whole and natural foods – cut out the sugary snacks.
  • Make mealtime a family adventure. Get your kids involved in grocery shopping and meal prepping. Let them pick out colorful fruits and veggies, and encourage them to help with age-appropriate tasks like washing produce or stirring ingredients.
  • Spice it up! Don’t be afraid to experiment with new recipes. Involve your kids in the process and let them choose healthy ingredients they’re curious about.
  • Presentation is key! Make healthy food fun and visually appealing. Cut sandwiches into fun shapes, arrange fruit kebabs, or create “power plate” dinners with different colored sections.
  • Limit (or eliminate) sugary drinks. Instead encourage hydration. Water should be the go-to beverage. Invest in a fun reusable water bottle and make staying hydrated a game.

Unleashing the Inner Athlete:

 

  • Find the fun! Focus on activities your child enjoys, whether it’s dancing, playing tag, swimming, or riding a bike. Explore local parks, playgrounds, or join a recreational sports team.
  • Make it a family affair! Go for walks, hikes, or bike rides together. Active family time creates lasting memories and sets a great example.
  • Limit screen time. Set clear guidelines for screen time and encourage active alternatives.
  • Get creative! Turn household chores into mini-workouts. Time yourselves doing chores like cleaning their room or raking leaves. The winner gets bragging rights (or an extra bedtime story!).

Resting Up for Adventure:

 

  • Establish a bedtime routine. This could include a warm bath, reading a book, or quiet cuddle time. Keep electronics off for at least an hour before bed to promote quality sleep.
  • Create a sleep-conducive environment. Make sure their room is dark, quiet, and cool.
  • Set the example in your house. Put them to bed, and go to bed early too. Practice good sleep hygiene yourself, by avoiding screens before bed and establishing a consistent sleep schedule for the whole family.

Remember:

 

  • Be patient and positive. Building healthy habits takes time and encouragement. Celebrate small victories and focus on progress, not perfection.
  • Make it a team effort. Work with your partner, caregivers, and even your child’s school to reinforce healthy habits.
  • Encourage Positive Body Image. Help your child develop a healthy body image by emphasizing the importance of being healthy and strong, rather than focusing on appearance.
  • Celebrate Progress. Praise your Childs efforts toward healthier choices. Celebrate small victories and encourage them to keep going.
  • Focus on the fun! Keep things positive and lighthearted.

 

Healthy Routines = Healthy Results

When healthy living feels like an adventure, your child is more likely to stick with it.

By implementing these tips, you can help your child develop a love for healthy living that sets them on the path to a happy and healthy life!

Just as our children will mimic our daily behaviors – both good and bad – they will want to partake in healthy activities if they see us living our best lives too. Just as we care for them, we should care for ourselves.

Sometimes life will go ways we haven’t intended, and the volatility of children’s lives and their penchant for the unpredictable will mean they increase these chances. Having emergency medications on hand for ourselves and for our kids is a key point in any plan for whole family.

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Everyone should be empowered to care for themselves and their loved ones during the unexpected.

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Disasters and Disease: An Increased Risk of Pneumonia

Natural events are unpredictable, preparedness is not.

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You can’t know what may happen next, but you can know your family is prepared.

With disasters and disease on the rise globally, there is no time like today, to prepare for tomorrow. From recent supply chain disruptions and prescription drug shortages, to natural disasters and human caused catastrophes, this has been a record year already. Are you prepared for what may happen next?

 

Just in the past few months:

 

  • A cargo ship took out a bridge in Baltimore, causing a ripple effect of supply chain disruptions.
  • Cases of measles – once thought to be eradicated – are steadily rising at a rate greater than last year.
  • The bird flu is back and is now infecting humans.
  • The FDA has been forced to backpedal on claims it made about Ivermectin in recent years.
  • Just yesterday the CDC issued a warning about an alarming growth in cases of a rare bacterial infection that is also now more deadly than previously thought.
  • A tragic earthquake in Taiwan that took the lives of 10 people, trapped hundreds more, also damaged 7 area hospitals.
  • And according DOD and NIH reports, upwards of 90% of our prescription drugs or their active ingredients come from foreign suppliers.

The cause for concern:

Both natural and man-made disasters can cause changes in your immediate environment and/or your daily routine significant enough to make you susceptible to an infection that could cause any number of illnesses, including a likelihood of contagious pneumonia.

Cases of Pneumonia can be caused by either a bacterial, viral or fungal infection. They can be easily spread though close proximity to an infected individual, who may be coughing or sneezing, or through contact with a contaminated surface such as a door handle or countertop.  However to mitigate this, antibiotics are usually prescribed when bacterial pneumonia is suspected. Fortunately, once an infected person begins an antibiotic regimen their contagiousness decreases. So the sooner you get on antibiotics for pneumonia, the better.

 

Here are just some of the ways disasters can cause an increase in susceptibility to Pneumonia:

 

  • Increased Exposure to Germs: Disasters can damage sewage systems and contaminate water supplies with floodwater or debris. This contaminated water can harbor bacteria, viruses, and even fungi that cause pneumonia. People may unknowingly ingest these germs while drinking contaminated water or inhaling aerosolized droplets during clean-up activities.
  • Weakened Immune Systems: Disasters can lead to crowded living conditions in shelters, which can increase the spread of respiratory illnesses like the flu or common cold. These viral infections can irritate and weaken the lungs, making them more susceptible to secondary bacterial infections that turn into pneumonia.
  • Poor Air Quality: Dust from collapsed buildings, smoke from fires, and mold growth in damp environments after floods can all contribute to air pollution. Inhaling these irritants damages the lining of the lungs, making them more vulnerable to infection.
  • Difficulties with Hygiene and Sanitation:  Disruptions to basic services after a disaster can make it difficult to maintain proper hygiene practices like handwashing. This can increase the spread of germs that cause pneumonia.
  • Underlying Health Conditions:  The stress and physical strain of a disaster can worsen existing chronic health conditions like asthma or heart disease. People with these conditions are already more susceptible to pneumonia, and disasters can exacerbate these vulnerabilities.

 

Conclusion and Solution:

Azithromycin (Z-Pack) is the most commonly prescribed and effective medication for most cases of Pneumonia. Just last year there was a shortage of Azithromycin due to increased global demand, inadequate production and geopolitical tensions which resulted in price increases. It is also used in the treatment of bronchitis, and other infections of the ears, lungs skin and throat. This is why Z-Pack is one of our core included medications in our Jase Case.

Through either a surge in demand or physical damage to facilities, both local events outside of our control, and natural disasters can affect critical infrastructure and cause interruptions in our access to healthcare facilities and pharmacies. The only way to have the peace of mind of knowing you are protected from medical emergencies is by having your own stock of emergency prescriptions.

Lifesaving Medications

Everyone should be empowered to care for themselves and their loved ones during the unexpected.

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Explore the Benefits of Outdoor Adventure

Explore the Benefits of Outdoor Adventure

An active family is a healthy family, and a healthy family is a happy one.  .Stay healthy by getting outside, and stay safe while doing so.  The sun is shining, the birds are chirping, and a gentle breeze is calling you outdoors! As this season graces us with its...

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Ivermectin back in stock! | Add it discounted to a Jase Case order today

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