For over two weeks now, failed retransmission negotiations between AT&T and Nexstar Media Group…
CFIF on Twitter CFIF on YouTube
TV Blackouts Reconfirm Need for Free Market Regulatory Reform

For over two weeks now, failed retransmission negotiations between AT&T and Nexstar Media Group have deprived customers across the United States of 120 Nexstar television stations in 97 markets.

That's unfortunately something to which far too many Americans have become accustomed recently, as 2019 has already witnessed more TV blackouts than any year in history.  And the news only gets worse:  CBS is now warning that stations in numerous major markets, including New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Philadelphia, Dallas and others, could be blacked out as this week concludes.

Here's the overarching problem.  Current laws dating all the way back to 1992 empower the federal government to pick TV market winners and losers by tipping the scales during negotiations.  Those laws governing what…[more]

July 18, 2019 • 08:58 pm

Liberty Update

CFIFs latest news, commentary and alerts delivered to your inbox.
Jester's CourtroomLegal tales stranger than stranger than fiction: Ridiculous and sometimes funny lawsuits plaguing our courts.
This Hospital Bed May Kill You Print
By Betsy McCaughey
Wednesday, April 11 2018
Research in the American Journal of Infection Control shows that half of hospital mattresses have drug-resistant bacteria on them. They're literal hotbeds of germs.

Danger lurks for hospital patients in a place they'd least expect it  the bed. Hospitals claim to disinfect beds in between patients. Don't believe it. Data from four New York hospitals prove beds are full of germs. Patients are nearly six times as likely to come down with staph, strep or another dangerous infection if the patient who used the bed before them had it.

Columbia University researchers found being in a bed previously used by a patient with an infection ups your own risk of infection by 583 percent, according to the current issue of Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology. The researchers conclude that "enhanced cleaning measures" are needed.

No kidding. Adequate cleaning is more vital now than ever, because germs are getting deadlier. On April 3, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that "nightmare bacteria"  causing infections that cannot be cured with most antibiotics  are spreading throughout U.S. hospitals. Fifty percent of patients who get these infections die.

Dr. Anne Schuchat, principal deputy director of the CDC, said she was shocked by the extent of the spread. "These genes are lurking in American patients and they are spreading in hospitals," warns Dr. Amesh Adalja, of Johns Hopkins University. The CDC is urging more "aggressive" infection control measures.

They should start by cleaning mattresses better and inspecting for leaks in mattress covers. Recently, the Food and Drug Administration warned hospitals for the second time about the toxic brew that can build up inside a mattress. Covers should be routinely removed, so the contents can be inspected. "If blood or body fluids from one patient penetrate and get absorbed in a mattress, the fluids can leak out the next time the mattress is used," harming the next patient.

Research in the American Journal of Infection Control shows that half of hospital mattresses have drug-resistant bacteria on them. They're literal hotbeds of germs.

Your hospital bed has an enormous impact on how well you survive your stay. "Patients are exposed to the mattress; they're lying on it for hours," says Xavier University health professor Edmond Hooker.

And it's the history of who was in the bed that matters most. If the patient occupying the bed before you was given antibiotics, your risk of getting C. diff, the most prevalent hospital infection, goes up by 22 percent. That's a serious threat. At least 29,000 patients are killed by C. diff each year. 

How does it happen? Antibiotics cause patients who have C. diff germs in their gastrointestinal tract to shed those germs on the mattress, bedframe, bedside table and other nearby surfaces. These germs lie in wait to sicken the next patient placed in the bed. Kevin Brown, at the University of Toronto School of Public Health, explains that about half of hospital patients take antibiotics. That's a huge number of beds potentially contaminated with C. diff.

Hospitals ignore the risk because they're rushed to turn over rooms, Hooker explains. The hospital "has patients coming out of the operating room, patients in the emergency room."

The remedy, say Columbia researchers, is for hospitals to adopt high-tech cleaning methods that disinfect an entire room, including the bed, in a few minutes.

That would also protect patients from another big risk researchers identified  having a hospital roommate who is infected or unknowingly carrying an organism such as strep, staph, Enterococci or Pseudomonas. That situation quadruples your risk of becoming infected yourself. Doctors and nurses pick up bacteria off one patient's bed and surroundings, and then carry the germs on their hands, gloves and lab coats to the next patient's bed.

According to the CDC, drug-resistant bacteria are spreading through hospitals "like a wildfire." The Columbia investigators made it clear what has to be done  more thorough cleaning. "Current standards for cleaning and disinfection" are insufficient, raising the risk of infection 5 to 6 fold. Hospitals had better pay attention.


Betsy McCaughey is a senior fellow at the London Center for Policy Research and a former lieutenant governor of New York State. 
COPYRIGHT 2018 CREATORS.COM

Question of the Week   
On July 20, 1969, the first man to walk on the Moon was Neil Armstrong, making “one giant leap for Mankind.” Who was the last person to walk on the Moon?
More Questions
Quote of the Day   
 
"Sen. Bernie Sanders is one of the many faces that make up the progressive left within the Democratic Party. He's an unapologetic democratic socialist. He has an economic agenda that would cost us trillions of dollars. And he's staunchly pro-labor union. That is until his campaign staff starts making demands for better pay, right? Yeah, it seems so. The Sanders campaign has unionized and is demanding…[more]
 
 
—Matt Vespa, Townhall.com Senior Editor
— Matt Vespa, Townhall.com Senior Editor
 
Liberty Poll   

In the current U.S. House of Representatives, who is, at the practical level, most in control of the agenda?