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Obama’s Upcoming ISIS Speech Should Take This in Consideration


The Political Angle of a Global Threat

President Obama is slated to give a speech, outlining the White House’s call to action in the Islamic State threat. It has been widely in the news lately, especially since horrific images have filled social media calling the threat of ISIS more dangerous than Al Qaeda ever was. This morning at 3:43 our time I received an email from a friend in Dubai, who is uniquely qualified to shed a more informed light on the situation.

I would like to share the New York Times opinion article from Sept. 7 with our readers, just in case you missed it.


Hi There.

Catching up on my reading here in Dubai and this article does decent job of framing structure of what world is facing.
Opinion: The Saudis Can Crush ISIS
7 September 2014
The New York Times
As ISIS continues to grow, many commentators have been pointing to Saudi Arabia as the source of the group, and most assume that the United States is the only force that can stop it. Both of these assertions are incorrect.
Saudi Arabia is not the source of ISIS, it’s the group’s primary target.
ISIS’ core objective is to restore the caliphate (an Islamic empire led by a supreme leader), and because Saudi Arabia is the epicenter of Islam and the custodian of the Two Holy Mosques in Mecca and Medina, ISIS’ road to the caliphate lies through the kingdom and its monarchy. Indeed, ISIS has even launched a campaign against Saudi Arabia, called qadimun, or “we are coming” to take over the country. Saudi Arabia has put the group on its list of terrorist sponsors, declared that funding ISIS is a crime with severe penalties, and arrested ISIS supporters and operatives over the past several months.
ISIS emerged not from Saudi Arabia but from postwar Iraq and the remnants of Saddam Hussein’s senior officer corps and their local support networks in Iraq and Syria. This has enabled ISIS to capture large swathes of land in these two countries and seize valuable economic, financial and energy assets, thus becoming financially self-sufficient. Now they are after Saudi Arabia’s riches.
The kingdom’s enormous oil fields and monetary wealth have always been coveted by Al Qaeda, as they are now by ISIS. Of course, with typical hypocrisy, while Al Qaeda and ISIS covet the kingdom’s riches, they also despise the way it has modernized in order to capitalize on that wealth – seeing it as having strayed from proper Islamic practices.
Why, then, do so many people believe Saudi Arabia is behind ISIS?
At the root of the claim that Saudi Arabia created ISIS is the belief that both entities practice a version of Islam called Salafism (erroneously known in the West as Wahhabism). While it is true that the kingdom espouses Salafism, ISIS’ claim that it is Salafi has no basis. Salafism is based on the word salaf, or “the ancestors,” referring to the way Islam was practiced by Prophet Muhammad’s early followers in the religion’s first three generations.
The Salafists believe that Islam should be practiced according to the dictates of these ancestors. Different interpretations of these dictates have occurred over time, leading to four schools of jurisprudence in Sunni Islam. The founders of these schools were Abu Hanifah, Malik, Al Shafi’i, and Ibn Hanbal.
ISIS follows an ideology that is a continuation of a crude sect known as the Kharijites, or the ones that “deviated” from the Muslim community during the reign of the fourth Caliph Ali (whom they assassinated). The Kharijites believed that whoever disagreed with them should be murdered as infidels (takfir), rationalized mass killings against civilians, including women and children (isti’rad), and practiced an extreme form of inquisition to test their opponent’s faith (imtihan).
These concepts make ISIS’ ideology the absolute opposite of Saudi Salafism. The version of Salafism applied in the kingdom’s courts and religious institutions was formulated by one of the four leading Muslim jurists, the ninth-century scholar Ahmad ibn Hanbal. Hanbali law stands firmly against sedition, shedding of blood, and forcible conversion.
One of Ibn Hanbal’s best known sayings typifies current Saudi theology: “Glory to God; shedding blood! Shedding blood! I do not consent nor do I command it; to observe patience in our situation is better than sedition that causes the shedding of blood.”
ISIS poses a unique threat: It is a bloodthirsty movement that can find disaffected young men and women and recruit them from among the world’s 1.3 billion Sunnis. It does not face the numerical constraints of groups like Hezbollah or countries like Iran, whose ideologies only appeal to the smaller Shiite community. With such enormous growth potential, ISIS must be defeated now.
Saudi Arabia is the only authority in the region with the power and legitimacy to bring ISIS down. Having effectively eradicated Al Qaeda in the kingdom, the Saudi government, with its experience fighting terrorism, is uniquely positioned to deal with ISIS, which is, after all, an Al Qaeda-aligned organization. The kingdom has built up an impressive counter terrorism program and its counterterrorism strategies are considered some of the most sophisticated and effective in the world.
More importantly, the Saudi leadership has a unique form of religious credibility and legitimacy, which will make it far more effective than other governments at delegitimizing ISIS’ monstrous terrorist ideology. The message sent to the Muslim and Arab worlds as Saudi Arabia takes on ISIS is radically different from – and much preferable to – the message sent if the United States does so, especially given America’s recent disastrous record in the Middle East.
When ISIS first appeared in Syria in 2011, Saudi Arabia tried to galvanize support for the moderate Syrian opposition against the murderous regime of Bashar al-Assad. But the world failed to listen.
Now, as King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia recently pointed out, ISIS is not only a threat to the Middle East, but to Europe and America. We call on the international community to form a solid coalition with Saudi Arabia to roll back ISIS’ military advances while at the same time supporting the kingdom’s ever increasing campaign to delegitimize ISIS in the eyes of the wider Sunni world, in order to ultimately destroy it.


CVS Stops Selling Cigarettes and Tobacco

CVS Stops Selling Cigarettes and TobaccoCVS Caremark announced some corporate changes beginning with their new name, CVS Health, and the decision to stop selling cigarettes and tobacco effective September 3, 2014.

CVS Health aims to reflect its broader health care commitment and its expertise in driving the innovations needed to shape the future of health.

“For our patients and customers, health is everything and CVS Health is changing the way health care is delivered to increase access, lower costs and improve quality,” announced Larry J. Merlo, President and CEO, CVS Health. “As a pharmacy innovation company at the forefront of a changing health care landscape, we are delivering breakthrough products and services, from advising on prescriptions to helping manage chronic and specialty conditions.”

CVS Health includes the company’s retail business, which continues to be called CVS/pharmacy; its pharmacy benefit management business, which is known as CVS/caremark; its walk-in medical clinics, CVS/minuteclinic; and its growing specialty pharmacy services, CVS/specialty. With 7,700 retail pharmacies, 900 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with nearly 65 million plan members, and expanding specialty pharmacy services, CVS Health enables people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable, effective ways.

“Each year, CVS Health touches more than 100 million people by playing an active, supportive role in each person’s unique health experience and in the greater health care environment,” said Merlo. “Consumers are increasingly taking control of their own health and, through our 26,000 pharmacists and nurse practitioners, we are helping people on their path to better health.”

As a further demonstration of its commitment to health, CVS Health also announced the end of tobacco sales at CVS/pharmacy as of September 3, nearly a month ahead of the previously targeted date of October 1. In February, the company announced that it would end the sale of cigarettes and tobacco products at its CVS/pharmacy stores, making CVS/pharmacy the first and only national pharmacy chain to take this step in support of the health and well-being of its patients and customers.

“Along with the start of CVS Health, the sale of cigarettes and tobacco products at CVS/pharmacy ends today. By eliminating cigarettes and tobacco products from sale in our stores, we can make a difference in the health of all Americans,” Merlo declared.

“The sale of tobacco in a retail pharmacy conflicts with the purpose of the health care services delivered there,” added Troyen A. Brennan, M.D., M.P.H., Chief Medical Officer, CVS Health. “Even more important, there is evidence developing that indicates that removing tobacco products from retailers with pharmacies will lead to substantially lower rates of smoking with implications for reducing tobacco-related deaths.”

Results of a new study from CVS Health, included in a Health Affairs blog, show that the enactment of policies to eliminate the sale of tobacco products at retailers with pharmacies in San Francisco and Boston was associated with up to a 13.3 percent reduction in purchasers of tobacco products.

“Today should mark a call to action by all retailers involved in health care,” said Matthew L. Myers, President, Campaign for Tobacco-Free Kids. “We urge other retailers with pharmacies to follow the powerful example set by CVS/pharmacy and end tobacco sales.”

In addition to removing cigarettes and tobacco products for sale, CVS Health kicked off a comprehensive and uniquely personalized smoking cessation campaign to help millions of Americans to quit smoking.

“Quitting smoking is one of the most important things you can do to improve your health and protect the health of your family, but quitting isn’t easy,” said Helena Foulkes, President, CVS/pharmacy.

The CVS Health smoking cessation program, designed with input from national experts, combines the efforts of CVS/pharmacy, CVS/minuteclinic and CVS/caremark to help smokers quit and includes four critical components: an assessment of the smoker’s readiness to quit, education to give smokers the information and tools they need to quit, medication support to help curb the desire to use tobacco and coaching to help individuals stay motivated and prevent relapses.

“We learned following our announcement in February that nearly everyone has a tobacco story and was eager to tell it,” Foulkes continued. “So, today we are launching a social campaign – #OneGoodReason – in which we are inviting everyone to share their personal stories of how smoking and tobacco use has affected their lives. Our hope is that through the sharing of these stories we can spark a movement that will make lasting improvements in health across our country.”

“Today, as CVS Health, we are tobacco-free, reinventing pharmacy and taking our place among leaders in the health care community,” Merlo concluded.

About CVS Health
CVS Health is a pharmacy innovation company helping people on their path to better health. Through our 7,700 retail pharmacies, 900 walk-in medical clinics, a leading pharmacy benefits manager with nearly 65 million plan members, and expanding specialty pharmacy services, we enable people, businesses and communities to manage health in more affordable, effective ways. This unique integrated model increases access to quality care, delivers better health outcomes and lowers overall health care costs. Find more information about how CVS Health is shaping the future of health at www.cvshealth.com.

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Book Yourself and Start Earning Money Today

Book Yourself and Start Earning Money TodayI have a very resourceful relative who has been out of steady work for a bit of time. Well, she decided to make money by booking herself and Boy, did it pay off! Here is her simple plan if you want to try and make some dependable cash income for yourself.

She took out an advertisement in a local pet friendly magazine that went something like this:

Personal Assistant, she listed her name, two contact numbers and an email address.

Next, she listed all of the things she is good at by category.
Household: Laundry, packing, unpacking, drop off or pick-up services, party preparations, plant watering, light cleaning, light food preparation and so on.
Pet Related: Dog walking, feeding, brushing, visiting, administering medications and the like.
Do It Yourself: Curtain rod and picture hanging, organizing closets, cleaning the garage, light gardening, and rearranging furniture.
Seamstress: Hemming, mending, alterations if you have lost weight and can no longer wear your favorite clothing.
Computers: Introduction to, email, surfing the web, data entry, basic filing.

Near the end of the ad she put in big bold letters, WHAT CAN I DO FOR YOU?

She closed with the basic detailed information regarding her fees and expectations, “12.00 per hour, not a health care provider nor strictly a cleaning service.”

She is booked six days a week for the next ten weeks and is thrilled with the variety of work she is doing. She is working for herself, setting her own hours, and extremely happy.

If someone calls for something she cannot do, she will admit that right up front, also she does not take risks. Anything dangerous or hazardous she wants no part of, but she has turned out to be quite the entrepreneur.

So, the next time you find yourself whining because you cannot find a job, simply make one for yourself based on your own set of skills. As you can see in this example, when you think about it, you have plenty of talent that others will pay you for. Start today and make money by booking yourself.

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Megabite Set to Interview Remote Data Backup’s Daniel Dugal

Megabite Set to Interview Remote Data Backup's Daniel DugalLocal Entreprenuer Deryck Burnett, owner of Megabite in Fernandina Beach, has an interview scheduled with Daniel Dugal, the CEO and founder of Remote Data Backups, on Tuesday, September 2, 2014 at 4:00 PM.

The show can be found by using this link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC1IvOO9HWhu3OsLpDqenc1Q and you can click now to set a “reminder”.

Remote Data Backups, Inc. has been a leader in business-class cloud backup since 1999. The company is a HP partner and provides data backup solutions to small to mid-sized businesses. Remote Data Backups offers a cost-effective, convenient and secure way to automatically back up your critical data using HP cloud technology.

Megabite is a computer repair company on Amelia Island. They service both PC and Macs, and Deryck has quickly earned a reputation for his expertise in managed IT servies and tech support for business owners. Your data, whether personal photos, business tax documents or original art, is the most important thing on your computer. Deryck understands the serious side effects associated with lost data and can help your small to medium business prepare a disaster recovery plan.

“There have been a number of bargain basement services entering the market with a barrage of advertising.” Deryck said. “We understand that some people simply make business decisions based on price alone, but when it comes to vital needs like secure data, cheaper is NOT better! That’s like buying the cheapest parachute, life insurance or eye surgery!”

When you lose your data, you can lose your business. Remote Data Backups protects data for banks, hospitals, financial institutions, government offices, commercial businesses, mobile salespeople, home users and anyone else with important data.

What sets Remote Data Backups (RDB) apart from cheaper backup solutions?

RDB is for Business, bargain-basement backups are for home users. “Bargain” backup services are targeted toward the average home user and never claim to be suitable or adequate for protecting valuable business data.

Remote Data Backups has had a stellar history of protecting data for business clients, including over 200 recognizable franchise brands, in dozens of countries globally over the last decade.

A History of Reliable Data Protection
Most cut-rate backup services popping up recently are owned by speculative venture capital funding companies ill-equipped to handle the volume of customers brought in by expensive national marketing campaigns. And while the introductory pricing structure may seem too low to resist, once the initial round of funding expires the providers are forced to make a price hike (for example, one major provider raised their rates by 5x this spring).

24/7 Support
When clients are in a panic and need to restore data, it is essential they can call an experienced, technically-knowlegeable support person to help them through it. With a non-business backup service, support is extremely limited. It can be a major challenge not only to speak with a live person by phone — in a reasonable time frame, who is helpful and technically competent — or even access useful documentation online. It’s like booking a convention center with bargain rates for cramming 10,000 business tycoons into a room made for 100 — you may save a few bucks, but the results are bound to be disastrous.

The support staff at Remote Data Backups is readily available by phone, toll-free 24/7, with little or no hold time. Each of their technicians has been with the company for at least 3 years and came to them with over a decade of prior hands-on IT experience.

Bandwidth and Performance
Bandwidth is one major commodity backup companies need to account for. When you give unlimited space for a few bucks a month, you are forced to govern bandwidth.

Remote Data Backups provides redundant bandwidth using multiple telecom providers via world-class connections. That way they can provide nearly limitless up-and-downstream for unparalleled transfer speed and performance.

Successful, Timely Data Restores
When clients need to restore a lost file, they don’t have time to wait. A backup service is only as valuable as the reliability and timeliness of a restore.

While to the novice observer backups may seem like simple, straightforward file transfers, the complexity of restoring incremental file changes can cause problems with less-tested software. RDB can say definitively they have never lost a client’s backup data.

World-Class Data Centers and Security
Another area where low-rate backup services cut corners is the equipment and infrastructure used to store and manage your data. Outdated technologies, overloaded servers, lack of security, monitoring and redundancy can be major signs of concern.

Remote Data Backups uses the world’s most secure data centers, located in ultra-secure private limestone mines located 100-200 feet below ground and separate by 1,100 miles. All data received by either hardened Data Center is immediately replicated to its mirror – connected by point-to-point, high-speed WAN links. Data received by either Data Center is immediately replicated to the other, so an unlikely outage or disaster at one location will not affect your data availability or service performance.

Each facility uses high-performance HP Servers with fail over and redundancy, continuous server monitoring and performance tuning, assuring that storage capacity is never exceeded. We maintain best practices networking and best-of-breed routers, switches, firewalls, servers, facilities infrastructure, power grids and telecommunications circuits are all deployed with backup components to maximize fail over and redundancy.

Other physical security features include:
-Redundant power supply using backup generators with full power for up to 7 days
-Redundant completely independent electrical systems, power train, commercial power feeds, cooling system, UPS systems, dedicated A/C units, generator systems and fuel system
-Environment and climate controlled facilities, resistant to seismic activity and other natural disasters, with Class A vaults with OSHA certified fire suppression and EPA certified water treatment plants and clean air fire extinguishing systems (CAFES)
-Level 4 (highest) security rating, 24/7 armed security, maintenance & service operation
-Finger scanners for physical access, motion detectors, CCTV monitoring & camera tracking
-Failed account access attempts are logged and reviewed to prevent unauthorized access
-Privacy and Security of your Data

With such low rates, a lot companies provide cheap data storage for alterior motives – data mining. That’s right, it says right in their User Agreement that they are free to use your own “private” data for their own marketing purposes. If that doesn’t bother you, be sure to check the regulatory compliance laws that affect your industry. If you use a data backup company that mines your data, you won’t pass an audit and can face serious fines and penalties for compromising the privacy and security of your clients’ private data.

With Remote Data Backups, you set your own private encryption key, which they never have access to. Your data is encrypted before leaving your computer, in transit and stored at their data centers, using bank-level 128-bit AES encryption, so without the key it cannot be accessed.

Bottom Line:
How valuable is your clients’ data, and your reputation? Can you risk your clients’ data, and your reputation, on an unproven, cut-rate backup service just to save a few bucks?

Dugal is excited to announce, “All HP StoreEasy storage devices sold will have Remote Data Backup’s LiveVault hands-free-trial displayed as an option during setup. Links on the StoreEasy desktop and start-up menu will also point to www.remotedatabackups.com/livevault.”

There are a variety of external hard drives and flash drives available to backup your data, but they all have disadvantages, which I shared in an article earlier this summer: Disadvatages of External Hard Drive and Flash Drive Backups.

Listening in on Daniel and Deryck’s conversation promises to be much more than an education in backing up your important data.

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2014 Georgia vs Florida Rates on Amelia Island

Georgia vs Florida Rates on Amelia IslandGet Your Game On with Special Rates and Offers on Amelia Island During the Georgia vs. Florida Football Weekend

Amelia Island, FL – On Saturday, November 1, the University of Georgia Bulldogs and University of Florida Gators will hold their annual rivalry game at Everbank Field in Jacksonville, Fla. Football fans from both teams will enjoy Amelia Island’s all-star line-up of special offers, discounts and a chance to win a three-day vacation. Located 45 minutes from downtown Jacksonville, Amelia Island is home to several award-winning hotels, resorts, and inns offering discounted packages. Gator and Bulldog fans can turn a game day trip into a weekend getaway or enjoy watching the game from the comfort of their hotel room or favorite sports bar.

Amelia is also running the “Gridiron Getaway” contest in which one lucky fan will win a three-day, two-night stay at Omni Amelia Island Plantation and two tickets to the Florida vs. Georgia football game on November 1 as well as round-trip transportation to the game. To enter the contest, visit www.floridageorgiaweekend.com.

The following packages and specials are available:
-Stay at the Amelia Hotel at the Beach with a special starting rate of $149 and enjoy a Manager’s Reception on Friday evening (Oct. 31). Sunday’s breakfast for guests will also include $4 mimosas and Bloody Marys. ameliahotel.com

-Amelia Rental and Management Services is offering a 10 percent discount on stays of three or more nights at their popular rental properties located on Amelia Island Plantation, Summer Beach Resort and Surf & Racquet Club, during the Georgia vs. Florida Football Weekend. ameliarentals.com

-The 11-room Amelia Island Williams House is providing Gator and Bulldog fans with a 15 percent discount. Guests can enjoy the inn’s daily breakfast and evening social. williamshouse.com

-ERA Fernandina Beach Realty Vacation Rentals, along with Amelia by the Sea, Oceans of Amelia and Amelia South, is featuring a 15 percent discount for the Georgia vs. Florida Weekend. The discount will apply to stays between October 29 and November 1 on select properties for reservations made on or after August 18. Ameliavacations.com

-The Hampton Inn at the Beach is offering a special $1 rate for Sunday, November 2 for guests who stay Friday and Saturday night. Rates start at $159 plus tax, for Friday and Saturday nights and include complimentary breakfast each day. Offer is only available by calling the hotel directly at 904-321-1111. ameliaislandhamptoninn.com

-The Hampton Inn & Suites in downtown Fernandina Beach is featuring guests a festive Bulldog and Gator welcome reception on Friday, Oct. 31. The reception, held from 4 to 7 p.m., will feature complimentary beer and wine, as well as an assortment of food and game day paraphernalia. hamptoninnameliaisland.com

-The Omni Amelia Island Plantation is offering fans of both teams a special overnight package, including luxurious accommodations, transportation to and from the Georgia vs. Florida game, tickets to the property’s Georgia vs. Florida Bash, and arrival amenity with tasty treats representing each state. The property will also be offering a number of special events during the weekend, including a pumped up bash on Friday night, spa services tailored to devoted fans, and a special sale at The Shops. omniameliaislandplantation.com

-The Residence Inn Amelia Island is gearing up for the return of one of the biggest college football rivalries with rates starting at $159 per night. Guests will receive all the Florida and Georgia fan party favors they can handle, an invitation to a Kickoff Cookout on Friday night, as well as the hotel’s full, hot complimentary breakfast, free island shuttle, evening socials, and more. Must visit http://bit.ly/1lRXTGV or call 866-245-6099 to book. residenceinnameliaisland.com

In addition to the packages, guests can celebrate before the big game by participating in the Omni Amelia Island Plantation’s Florida-Georgia Bash. Taking place on Friday, Oct. 31 from 7 to 11 p.m., the event will feature live music from the Swingin’ Medallions, costume contests, food, drinks and more. Please visit www.flgabash.com for more information.

About Amelia Island:
Northeast Florida’s coastal treasure, Amelia Island is a barrier island rich in colorful history and breath-taking natural beauty. Consistently ranked in the top 10 North American Islands by the readers on Conde Nast Traveler, Amelia Island offers long, beautiful beaches, abundant wildlife, and pristine waters. Upscale resorts with world-class spas, championship golf and exclusive dining blend effortlessly with a captivating collection of bed and breakfast inns and historic districts.

The island is home to Fernandina Beach, once a vibrant Victorian seaport village, and now a charming downtown district of eclectic shops, attractions and eateries. Forget the everyday getaway; Come make memories on Amelia Island. For visitor information and online planning, visit www.ameliaisland.com.

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Surviving Sepsis and Taming a Deadly Immune Response

Surviving Sepsis and Taming a Deadly Immune ResponseMany people have never heard of sepsis, or they don’t know what it is. But sepsis is one of the top 10 causes of disease-related death in the United States. The condition can arise suddenly and progress quickly, and it’s often hard to recognize.

Sepsis was once commonly known as “blood poisoning.” It was almost always deadly. Today, even with early treatment, sepsis kills about 1 in 5 affected people. It causes symptoms such as fever, chills, rapid breathing, and confusion.

Anyone can get sepsis, but the elderly, children, and infants are most vulnerable. People with weakened immune systems, severe burns, physical trauma, or long-term illnesses (such as diabetes, cancer, or liver disease) are also at increased risk.

At one time, sepsis was thought to arise from an overgrowth of bacteria or other germs in the bloodstream. We now know that sepsis actually springs from 2 factors: first an infection (such as pneumonia or a urinary tract infection) and then a powerful and harmful response by your body’s own immune system.

“With sepsis, the fight between the infection and the body’s immune response makes the body like a battleground,” says Dr. Derek Angus, a critical care physician at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine. “In the case of severe sepsis, that fight results in vital organ dysfunction, which puts one’s life in peril.”

Severe sepsis can damage essential organs like the liver and kidneys. An even more extreme disorder occurs when blood pressure plummets—a condition known as septic shock. “With septic shock, the immune response that’s trying to fight infection can actually lead to a dangerous drop in blood pressure,” Angus says. As blood pressure falls, tissues become starved for oxygen-rich blood. Organs can fail, which could lead to death.

By some estimates, severe sepsis or septic shock strikes nearly 1 million Americans each year. At least 200,000 of them die in the hospital shortly afterward. Many who survive recover completely. But others have lasting problems, including permanent organ damage and thinking difficulties (such as problems with planning, organizing, and multitasking).

Sepsis can be triggered by many types of infections. “But the most common cause of sepsis is community–acquired pneumonia,” Angus says. Scientists are still working to understand why some people with infections develop severe sepsis or septic shock while others don’t.

Researchers are exploring new ways to diagnose, reverse, or prevent this serious and costly condition. Treatment for sepsis is most successful if the condition is spotted early and then treated quickly with antibiotics to fight the infection and fluids to maintain blood pressure.

In a large NIH-funded clinical trial of sepsis care, Angus and his colleagues found that a relatively simple strategy worked as well at preventing deaths as did more complex and costly approaches. “The study helped to clarify that a lot of the treatment steps we’d been using are essential, but the extra steps with sophisticated and invasive procedures aren’t always necessary to improve survival,” Angus says.

Sepsis is a health emergency that requires swift medical care.

This article was written and distributed by News in Health (NIH)
Managing Editor: Harrison Wein, Ph.D.
Editor: Vicki Contie
Contributors: Vicki Contie, Alan Defibaugh (illustrations), and Dana Steinberg.

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Second Annual Senior Expo and Health Fair

Second Annual Senior Expo and Health Fair

Fernandina Beach, FL – The Council on Aging of Nassau County and Baptist Health Hospital have joined forces to present the 2nd annual Senior Expo and Health Fair on Friday, August 15th. This event will bring together more than forty state and local organizations who will present a wide variety of health and wellness information to Nassau County senior citizens.

This expo is free of charge and will be held at the Atlantic Avenue Recreation Center’s main auditorium. The goal of this event is to educate and enlighten seniors resulting in a longer, healthier life.

The Senior Expo and Health Fair will begin at 9 a.m. and run until 2 p.m. While the information offered is geared for individuals 60 + years of age, the public is invited to attend this free event. Health tests and screenings for cholesterol, blood pressure, bone density and glucose levels will also be offered at the expo free of charge. Influenza vaccinations will also be available through Walgreens Pharmacy.

In its 40th year serving the needs of Nassau County seniors, The Council on Aging of Nassau County is a 501(3)(c) not for profit agency. There are five outreach programs currently offered by the COA: Two Senior Centers, In-home Services, Transportation Services, Meals on Wheels, and Adult Day Healthcare. The COA is partially funded by local and federal grants and donations from local individuals and businesses.

For more information, please visit their website: www.coanassau.com.

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Can You Recognize a Heart Attack or Stroke?

Can You Recognize a Heart Attack or Stroke?Can You Recognize a Heart Attack or Stroke? What To Do When Every Moment Counts.

How would you react to a medical emergency? When it comes to life-threatening conditions like heart attack or stroke, every minute counts. Get to know the signs and symptoms of these health threats. If you think you or someone else might be having a heart attack or stroke, get medical help right away. Acting fast could save your life or someone else’s.

Heart disease and stroke are two of the top killers among both women and men in the U.S. Nationwide, someone dies from a heart attack about every 90 seconds, and stroke kills someone about every 4 minutes, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Quick medical help could prevent many of these deaths. Fast action can also limit permanent damage to the body.

Heart attack and stroke are caused by interruptions to the normal flow of blood to the heart or brain, two organs that are essential to life. Without access to oxygen-rich blood and nutrients, heart or brain cells begin to malfunction and die. This cell death can set off a series of harmful effects throughout the body. The changes ultimately lead to the familiar symptoms of a heart or brain emergency.

You might know the most common symptoms of heart attack: sustained, crushing chest pain and difficulty breathing. A heart attack might also cause cold sweats, a racing heart, pain down the left arm, jaw stiffness, or shoulder pain.

Many don’t know that women often have different heart attack symptoms than men. For instance, instead of having chest pain during a heart attack, women may feel extremely exhausted and fatigued or have indigestion and nausea.

“Many women have a vague sense of gloom and doom, a sense of ‘I just don’t feel quite right and don’t know why,'” says Dr. Patrice Desvigne-Nickens, an NIH expert in heart health.

The symptoms of stroke include sudden difficulty seeing, speaking, or walking, and feelings of weakness, numbness, dizziness, and confusion. “Some people get a severe headache that’s immediate and strong, different from any kind you’ve ever had,” says Dr. Salina Waddy, an NIH stroke expert.

At the first sign of any of these symptoms, fast action by you, someone you know, or a passerby can make a huge difference. NIH-funded research has helped ensure that more people survive heart attacks and strokes every year. We now have medicines, procedures, and devices that can help limit heart and brain damage following an attack, as long as medical help arrives quickly.

If the heart is starved for blood for too long, generally more than 20 minutes, heart muscle can be irreversibly damaged, Desvigne-Nickens says. “You need to be in the hospital because there’s a risk of cardiac arrest (your heart stopping),” which could be deadly. At the hospital, doctors can administer clot-busting drugs and other emergency procedures.

With stroke, Waddy says, “The longer you wait, the more brain cells are dying,” and the greater the chance for permanent damage or disability.

Emergency treatment for stroke depends on the kind of stroke. The most common type, ischemic stroke, is caused by a clot that clogs a blood vessel in the brain. The clot-dissolving drug tPA works best when given soon after symptoms begin. NIH research shows that patients who received tPA within three hours of stroke onset were more likely to recover fully.

Other strokes are caused by a hemorrhage, when a blood vessel breaks and bleeds into the brain. “The patient can have a larger hemorrhage within the first 3 hours,” Waddy says. A hospital medical team can help contain the bleeding, so every moment counts.

Even if you’re unsure, don’t feel embarrassed or hesitate to call 9-1-1 if you suspect a heart attack or stroke. “You should not go get your car keys. Your spouse shouldn’t be driving you to the hospital,” advises Desvigne-Nickens. “The emergency crew is trained to treat these symptoms, and it could mean the difference between life and death.”

Heart attack or stroke can happen to anyone, but your risk increases with age. A family or personal history of heart attack or stroke also raises your risk. But some risk factors for heart attack and stroke are within your control. Treating them can dramatically reduce your risk.

“If you have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, or diabetes, work with your doctor to get these conditions under control,” Waddy says. “Know your numbers [blood pressure, blood sugar, and cholesterol] and what they mean.”

You can also prepare for a medical emergency, to some degree. A hospital may not have access to your medical records when you arrive. Keep important health information handy, such as the medicines you’re taking, allergies, and emergency contacts. It would be important for the medical team to know, for example, if you’ve been taking anticoagulants to help prevent blood clots; these blood thinners put you at increased risk of bleeding. You might consider carrying an NIH wallet card that lists heart attack symptoms and has room for your personal medical information.

NIH researchers are studying new drugs and procedures to help the heart and brain repair themselves and improve organ function. “But there is absolutely nothing that will save both your time and health as well as prevention,” says Dr. Jeremy Brown, director of NIH’s Office of Emergency Care Research. Studies show that making healthy lifestyle choices can help prevent these medical emergencies from happening in the first place. Eat a healthy diet rich in protein, whole grains, and fruits and vegetables, and low in saturated fat. Get regular physical activity and don’t smoke.

“I think one of the most important things we can do is to take a basic CPR and first aid course,” recommends Brown. “We know the majority of cardiac arrests happen outside of hospitals and of that many, many can be saved if we get people with basic training on the scene quickly. An ambulance can never get there as quickly as a citizen passing by.”

Whether or not you’re trained to offer help, if you see someone having symptoms of a heart attack or stroke, call for help immediately.

“If you’re even thinking about calling 9-1-1, you should call,” Desvigne-Nickens says. “Yes other conditions can mimic the signs and symptoms of a heart attack or stroke, but let the emergency physician figure that out in the emergency room.”

If you are interested in taking a CPR or AED class here in Northeast Florida, contact First Coast CPR. This Center for CPR and Safety Training, offers lifesaving CPR/AED, First Aid, Basic Life Support (BLS), ACLS and PALS Training from American Heart Association, as well Wilderness Training from SOLO. For CPR & BLS they offer both a classroom setting, or online skills practice and skills test. They provide corporate and group training in Jacksonville, Amelia Island, Fernandina Beach, St. Augustine, and Southeast Georgia.

This article was provided by News in Health (NIH)
Managing Editor: Harrison Wein, Ph.D.
Editor: Vicki Contie
Contributors: Vicki Contie, Alan Defibaugh (illustrations), and Dana Steinberg.

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2014 World Breastfeeding Week

2014 World Breastfeeding WeekBreastfeeding is one of the most effective steps a mother can take to protect the health of her baby and World Breastfeeding Week, is being held August 1-7, 2014.

The success rate among mothers who want to breastfeed can be greatly improved through active support from their families, friends, communities, clinicians, health care leaders, employers, and policymakers. Given the importance of breastfeeding for the health and well-being of mothers and children, it is critical that we take action across the country to support breastfeeding.

The American Academy of Pediatrics recommends exclusive breastfeeding for about the first 6 months and continued breastfeeding for at least the first year as solid foods are introduced. However, many mothers in the US are not able to meet these recommendations. Data from the 2014 Breastfeeding Report Card show that in 2011, 79 percent of newborn infants started breastfeeding, 49 percent were still breastfeeding at six months and 27 percent were still breastfeeding at twelve months.

Professional breastfeeding support is an integral part of the system that can help mothers start and continue breastfeeding. Professional breastfeeding experts support breastfeeding when they assist mothers, create and administer breastfeeding programs, and educate other health professionals about breastfeeding.

Women should be encouraged to discuss with others their desire and plans to breastfeed, whether such persons are clinicians, family and friends, employers, or child care providers. When a woman has decided she wants to breastfeed, discussing her plans with her clinician during prenatal care and again when she is in the hospital or birth center for childbirth will enable her clinician to give her the type of information and assistance she needs to be successful.

Her partner and the baby’s grandmothers also play critical support roles when it comes to breastfeeding, both with regard to assisting in decision making about how the baby is fed and in providing support for breastfeeding after the baby is born.

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Fight Off Food Poisoning in Warmer Weather

Fight Off Food Poisoning in Warmer WeatherIn warm-weather months, who doesn’t love to get outside for picnics, backyard gatherings, and of course delicious foods? But high temperatures raise your chance of getting sick from things you eat. Learn how to handle food properly to avoid the misery of food poisoning.

It can be hard to keep foods safe to eat during warmer weather. If you’re eating or preparing foods outside, you may have trouble finding places to wash your hands, keep foods cold, or cook at the proper temperature—all of which are important to prevent foodborne illness.

“Food poisoning occurs if the foods you eat contain certain microbes or the toxins they produce,” says Dr. Alison O’Brien, a food safety expert at the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences in Maryland. “You can get sick directly from swallowing the toxins. Or you can get sick if the microbes get into your gut and start to multiply.”

Each year, about 1 in 6 Americans get sick from tainted foods. Most foodborne illnesses arise suddenly and last only a short time. But food poisoning sometimes leads to more serious problems. Foodborne diseases kill about 3,000 people nationwide each year. Infants, older people, and those with compromised immune systems are especially at risk.

Many people know the symptoms of food poisoning: vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain, fever, or chills. The sickness may be mild or severe. It may last from a few hours to several days. The symptoms and length of illness depend on the type of disease-causing microbe or toxin you’ve swallowed.

The leading cause of foodborne disease outbreaks in the U.S. is norovirus. This highly contagious virus sickens more than 20 million people nationwide each year, leading to vomiting and diarrhea. Norovirus outbreaks can occur anywhere people gather or food is served.

“You can get norovirus when a sick food handler contaminates your food, possibly by not washing their hands well enough after touching the virus,” O’Brien says. “Swallowing just a little norovirus can make you very sick.”

Several types of bacteria can also cause food poisoning. Some foods you buy, such as raw meat or fruits and vegetables, may already contain bacteria that you need to wash off or cook to destroy. Bacteria can also thrive in certain foods if not stored properly.

Bacteria like Staph and Bacillus cereus can make you sick quickly, within 1 to 7 hours. These bacteria produce fast-acting toxins in foods (such as meat or dairy for Staph, and starchy foods like rice for B. cereus). Keeping such foods refrigerated at 40 °F or colder helps slow or stop the growth of these bacteria.

Other bacteria, such as Salmonella and Campylobacter, don’t make you sick until they get in your body and multiply. With these microbes, it can take 12 hours or a few days for you to feel ill. “Symptoms can include fever, cramps, and sometimes bloody diarrhea,” says O’Brien.

When you have a foodborne illness, you usually need to drink plenty of fluids. “But see a doctor if you have blood in your stool,” O’Brien advises. “And if a child seems to have food poisoning, you should have the child seen by a doctor.”

Prevent Food Poisoning
-Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds with soapy water before and after handling food and after using the bathroom.
-Wash fruits and vegetables.
-Avoid undercooked seafood, meats, and eggs.
-Keep raw meat, poultry, seafood, and their juices away from other foods.
-Keep hot foods hot and cold foods cold. Promptly refrigerate foods that can spoil.

This article was written by News in Health (NIH)
Managing Editor: Harrison Wein, Ph.D.
Editor: Vicki Contie
Contributors: Stephanie Clipper, Vicki Contie, and Alan Defibaugh (illustrations)

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World Hepatitis Day is July 28th

World Hepatitis Day is July 28thWorld Hepatitis Day is July 28, 2014.

Viral hepatitis is a major global health threat. All types of viral hepatitis can cause inflammation of the liver; however, hepatitis B and C infection can result in a lifelong, chronic infection. Worldwide, more than one million people die each year from viral hepatitis. The World Health Organization (WHO) estimates that nearly 400 million people have chronic viral hepatitis worldwide.

Every year on July 28th, World Hepatitis Day aims to increase the awareness and understanding of viral hepatitis as a major global health threat.

Viral hepatitis is the leading cause of liver cancer and the most common reason for liver transplantation. An estimated 4.4 million Americans are living with chronic hepatitis; most do not know they are infected.

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Luxury Travel Advisors Exchange Travel News in Las Vegas

indochinaWallace Pierson Travel, the leading (and only) Virtuoso Luxury Travel Advisor on Amelia Island, is once again heading for Las Vegas, where during the annual Virtuoso Travel Week (August 8-15), they will operate business from the Bellagio Resort in Sin City.

Formerly known as The Travel Agency, Wallace Pierson Travel has been attending this famous Travel Exchange show since Virtuoso started the tradition more than a decade ago. As a member of an elite group of luxury travel advisors, Ange Wallace, Angela Pierson, Lynann Mullis, Tracy Lynch, Debbie Kellogg, Dawn Dixon and Mike Dionne will be at the top of their game while learning the latest cutting edge travel information, shopping for your next great travel project, and making the relationships that give them the ability to craft unique travel experiences for you around the world or right here in North America.  For existing and new clients they will be available by cell phone and email but somewhat limited.  “Feel free to call me on my cell at 904 753 4615 or email myself or your advisor,” says Ange Wallace, founder and co-owner of the agency that opened its doors on Amelia Island exactly 40 years ago.

Following is a sneak preview of the rigorous schedule and the scope of this one week ‘trip around the world’. There will be 2,118 advisors and agency owners, and over 1,888 travel suppliers including CEO’s, owners and hotel General Managers. Click on this You Tube link to get a feel for what they experience  in that week!

To give you an idea of a typical week for them at this event, Ange gave us the highlight points of her week planner, noting that each of her ladies attending will have a similar, rigorous schedule!

Arrival is on Friday the 8th and the whole team will have dinner with her at Mon Ami Gabi across the street from the Bellagio, a happy tradition that has developed over the years and a great way to catch the travel mood and build energy for what’s to come.

Saturday, from 9:30 AM to 5:00 PM they will all participate in the VAST Globetrotting Training. VAST stands for Virtuoso Active & Specialty Travel.  During this time they meet for about 10 minutes with all of the Virtuoso Active & Specialty Travel suppliers such as Lindblad, Backroads, Micato Safaris, Natural Habitat, Arctic Kingdom, Tauck Culturious, Rocky Mountaineer and many more.  Even in the lunch break education gets top priority with an update on Sustainable Tourism by Costas Christ, one of the world’s top sustainable tourism experts. No time’s a-wasted here!!  At 5:00pm Ange is scheduled to go straight to the Virtuoso Reception for elected committee members and from there to a reception hosted by Nomadic Expeditions; a small travel supplier specializing in custom trips to Mongolia.  After that, the private parties continue!

Continued on Sunday Ange will be on the VAST panel with another advisor and two well known travel suppliers as they all participate in break out educational seminars.  Some of our ladies are doing destination training on South America or South Pacific and Australia/New Zealand.  At 3:30 we will all meet for the General Session– Well over 3,000 of our best friends will attend!  At 6:00pm begins the Welcome Cocktail Reception hosted by the Bellagio.  Each year they supersede the year before with food, drinks and entertainment!

Monday through Friday we will all be sitting at our tables from 8:15 to 4:15 (with a few breaks and lunch) while every supplier we work with through Virtuoso streams by in 4 minute meetings to introduce us to what is new and wonderful in their world.  After this from 4:25 to 5:05 each of us has three 10 minute private meetings scheduled with suppliers we need more time with.  Monday night we have an amazing Destinations Dinner where we are invited by suppliers to dine with them.  This year I will sit with Zegrahm Expeditions, relatively new to Virtuoso but with very inspiring programs.  Have you heard of them? If not, you soon will. Tuesday night is filled with an onslaught of parties hosted by cruise lines, Preferred Hotels, and others.  Wednesday is the Hotel Dinner.  This is similar to the destination dinner.  This time I will sit with Mukul Beach, Golf and Spa. Do you know where in the world they are?

Thursday night, our last night together for this year, we have a Grand Gala Dinner followed by the Club V After Party at the BANK!

Friday AM flights always come early after this Tour de Force!  But, this year I have been invited to spend 3 nights at Miraval Spa  on the way home.  Have you heard of this amazing Destination SPA? Know where it is?

Guess what? This is just the bare bones of Ange’s agenda! The other 4 ladies will be doing some of the same and many different meetings and dinners. “We believe in divide and conquer,” Ange smiles

And then after they have digested everything and formatted programs and platforms, they share the results and recommendations with you on their blog site  www.wallacepiersontravel.com, culminating into their own annual TEST DRIVE THE WORLD LUXURY TRAVEL SHOW (and fundraiser for The Boys and Girls Clubs of Nassau County Foundation!) which this year will be held on Nov 8th from 1-4 at The Ritz-Carlton, Amelia Island!  Please save the date and join us!

‘Til then-  Travel Well!!



Obama Affordable Golf Act

Golf-Taxes-Funny copyOur neighbors had their annual friends and family golf tournament this past weekend and our street turned into a parking lot.

Not much of a golfer myself, I nevertheless show keen interest in their tall stories about equipment cost and handicaps, tee times  and so on, which is why I truly enjoyed sharing the following phone call with them.

Even though they did enjoy the humor of the recording tremendously, very few seem to understand the scary underlaying reality of what’s going on in the country.

And while we’re on the topic of golf, here is a golf joke I hadn’t heard yet.

funny-golf-pictures-4Jim decided to tie the knot with his long time girlfriend.
One evening, after the honeymoon, he was cleaning his golf shoes.
His wife was standing there watching him.
After a long period of silence she finally speaks.
“Honey, I’ve been thinking, now that we are married I think it’s time you quit golfing.
Maybe you should sell your golf clubs.”

Jim gets this horrified look on his face.

She says, “Darling, what’s wrong ?”

”There for a minute you were sounding like my ex-wife.”

“Ex wife !” she screams,
“I didn’t know you were married before !”

“I wasn’t !”

Another Bright Face on Island’s Creative Canvas

5724157Amelia Island and Fernandina Beach is blessed with an oversized contingent of great musicians, writers and visual artists, not unusual for an island beach community. What is unusual however, is that this creative community is so multi-layered in technique, medium and commercial adaptability that all artists have outlets for their creative productions. One such mixed media artist is Sarah Bash, another bright face on Amelia Island’s Creative Palette.

Sarah Bash and her family moved to Fernandina Beach two years ago from St. Simons Island Georgia, where she had established herself as a juried artist and instructor at the Glynn Art Association.
Her love for art came at a young age, from the day she started learning to read and write but it wasn’t until after the birth of her daughter in 2006 that she took on the courage to follow her dream of becoming an artist as a full time career.

One thing I wanted to teach my daughter is that if you want to pursue something you must give it your BEST and never give up.  It was then that I decided to give illustrating children’s books a whirl. Moreover, I worked at networking through JacketFlap.com and other social marketing sites.  In 2009, I published stories in a magazine that a fellow graphic designer and I created titled, Dream Chasers Magazine.”

Over the years Bash has diligently worked on developing a network of artists and authors around the globe, which among others resulted in a collaboration with Australia’s premier children book author J.R. Poulter, illustrating the title ‘At the Beach with Bucket & Spade’. Sarah’s whimsical, upbeat, colorful style had caught the publishing company’s eye, as they were producing stories for on the go parents via iPhone and iPad formats.

“As an artist I fell in love with Fernandina”, says Sarah Bash. “I always imagined living on the ocean and following my dream of painting and creating art that people would admire and appreciate. After an chapter of publishing and writing, I’ve decided to get back into painting and creating larger pieces of art, as well as wearable whimsical works of art.” 

sarahebash-Sarah_Photo_MagIn that respect she was especially delighted to meet Cindy Johnson from Bijoux Amelia a while back, who she credits with a keen eye for design and couture.  “Cindy motivates me to keep creating and painting. She has a deep appreciation of arts and fashion and inspires me to try creative expressions on fashion accessories such as tote bags, beach bags and beach towels.” In addition to some original artwork offered at this year’s the Shrimp Festival celebration, Sarah is excited to take her art to the next level and create more work such as murals for houses and businesses as well as larger commissioned canvas pieces.

Check out Sarah’s website at http://www.sarahbashillustrations.com

Things I noticed After a Week’s Vacation

Dangerous Ambiguity on a dark night

Dangerous Ambiguity on a dark night

After a week’s vacation on Anna Maria Island I must confess that the world looks even more ambiguous than before.
J.G Ballard wrote a while back that “The marriage of reason and nightmare which has dominated the 20th century has given birth to an ever more ambiguous world. Across the communications landscape move the specters of sinister technologies and the dreams that money can buy. Thermonuclear weapons systems and soft drink commercials coexist in an overlit realm ruled by advertising and pseudo events, science and pornography. Over our lives preside the great twin leitmotifs of the 20th century—sex and paranoia.”

So when I read that New York City’s law enforcement arrests some guys operating a “drone” near the George Washington Bridge with the accusation that they interfered with a Police Helicopter, while an Air Traffic Control Report now clearly shows that it was the helicopter threatening the drone, I feel ambiguity creeping up the base of my neck; even more so when I notice on my beach walk right here on our beach some guys operating remote controlled drones with HD Digital cameras and I wonder the potentially compromising personal pictures they can take of scantily dressed sunbathers and post them online. Am I a weirdo for thinking that or should guilt be shared with Ballard’s observation above?? 

Ambiguity can refer to a statement, an act or an attitude. Let’s see if you can find examples of this in the following list:

And just for good measure and to show that Ballard’s observation has an eternal application, here are 5 sketches that confirm that sex and paranoia are still male leitmotivs in the 21st century. Enjoy.