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The Village Doctor Newsletter – Week of March 4, 2022

Peace,

Our concerns and newsletter topics do seem pale when there is a war raging on the other side of our globe. Tragic. I know many of you have already “booked” stays in Ukraine via Airbnb as a means of sending financial support. Thank you, Brain Chesky and Airbnb for waiving all fees associated with such transactions.  Also, a big shout out to Mila Kunis (born in Ukraine) and her husband Ashton Kutchner, who this past Thursday launched  a “Stand With Ukraine” GoFundMe campaign (which as of this writing has already raised $15 million). Their goal is to raise $30 million for Flexport.org and Airbnb.org, which, they said, are “two organizations who are actively on the ground providing immediate help to those who need it most.”

Closer to home; I have mentioned a whole-body imaging company, Prenuvo, to many of you. Their aim, using a high tech MIR scanner and proprietary imaging software, is to “turn healthcare upside down. Rather than wait for symptoms to present and disease to progress, Prenuvo provides early insight into what is going on under the skin”. Highlight – early cancer detection.

However, the CEO of Prenuvo, Andrew Lacy, just emailed me the following. “Recognizing the growing humanitarian crisis in Ukraine, we decided to do what we can as a company. Anyone you introduce who is new to Prenuvo and who books a Whole Body Scan in Silicon Valley can elect to have us donate 100% of the cost to the Ukrainian Red Cross, up to a total of $100,000…So I would like to ask a favor – please spread the word directly to loved ones in your community so they can stop postponing and start empowering their health. This is a great chance to take care of their health while looking out for those in need! Please ask people to book using this link or mention the Ukraine donation when calling us on +1 833 773 6886.”

Thank you, Andrew, for everything you, and your team, do.

Lastly, from my Stanford colleagues (thank you, Matt Strehlow, Andra Blomkalns, and the Emergency Medicine Executive Team) who have significant international health experience, I share this list of ways you can support our brothers and sisters in Ukraine.

#standwithukraine

Eric Weiss, MD, March 5, 2022

 

 

FRUSTRATION FOR PARENTS OF UNDER 5’S IN THE AGE OF COVID

For parents of children younger than five years of age, frustration and disappointment are mounting. Recently, the FDA delayed approving COVID immunizations for the under-5 age group until more data is available, regarding a third dose. This has many people upset and two timely articles were released in the NY Times and Washington Post discussing this matter (references below). What was notable was the volume and emotion of comments in response to these articles. Many parents were tired, even angry, of being told to be ‘patient’–after two years of patience. Some parents felt that enough was enough and want to resume a normal life. The vehemence and polarization in the responses is perhaps not surprising. Being told to isolate, parents wanted the same protection conferred by immunization to them offered to their children. But this isn’t the whole story… Read more

 

HOW TO ADD YOUR COVID VACCINE DATA TO YOUR SMARTPHONE’S  WALLET APP

To help simplify travel and attend public events requiring proof of COVID vaccination, here are some ways to carry them with you digitally.

Fortunately, some states like California, Utah, Washington, and New York offer “SMART Health Cards.”  These are digital credentials of your vaccination details linked to an official state database which comes in the form of a QR code.  While many businesses and smaller venues have not adopted use of these QR codes, with it you can add those records to an official wallet app on your iPhone or Android phone.  Apple and Google have made the process pretty convenient... Read more

BREAST CANCER SCREENING

Breast cancer awareness is an incredibly important topic of discussion in both men’s and women’s health. While breast cancer remains the most commonly diagnosed cancer in women,there is good news in that death rates have fallen by about 1% a year since 2013. This is likely due to advances in early diagnosis and  treatment.  Screening for breast cancer remains a vital part in the chain of early diagnosis and treatment. The current guidelines can be found here by the American Cancer SocietyRead more

 

As we begin this new year, thirsting for Spring, and peace for all, I must here again share the sad news of another lost to the Stanford, and indeed global community. As many of you may have read, Dr, Paul Farmer, a giant amongst those working in global health, died last month on grounds of a hospital and university he had helped establish in Butaro, Rwanda. He was 62. I share these words of remembrance from my friend Michele Barry, who is the Senior Associate Dean for Global Health at Stanford University:

It is with great sadness that I commemorate the passing of a truly iconic figure in global health, Dr. Paul Farmer, co-founder and chief strategist of Partners In Health. He was a husband, a father, a brother, a son, and a dear friend to me as well as many others in the world.

Paul was an extraordinary force for what was right in this world and a voice of truth, hope, and inspiration. The world is forever better for his fight for justice and equity. Paul came to talk to our Stanford Global Health community a few times last year; here is a link to a Global Health Conversation he recently had with Paul Costello. The last question that Paul Costello asked Paul Farmer was what he would like to be known for. Paul answered: “If there were a tombstone, I would like it to say ‘He was of use.'”

Godspeed, Paul, there is no question that you were of use. May we all aim so high.

► Watch Dr. Farmer’s keynote at #TropMed17

► View a conversation with Dr. Farmer hosted by Stanford University Center for Innovation in Global Health and introduced by 2002 President Michele Barry, MD, FACP, FASTMH, the Center’s director

► Watch a PBS NewsHour report on Dr. Farmer’s life

 

Again, TVD Newsletter is a labor of love. If you enjoy reading this, please share widely! Was this forwarded to you by a friend? Please subscribe here.

*****

Yours, in health and resilience,

Eric and the TVD MD team…