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August 2018 Archives

Why organizations' first impulse is to cover up

The Catholic Church is once again making news. There are the tragic findings of a Pennsylvania Grand Jury, which recently announced it had evidence of 300 priests molesting 1,000 children in their care. This was followed by accusations by a top Vatican diplomat who, among other things, alleged that the Pope and other top Vatican officials covered up accusations that American Cardinal Theodore McCarrick had sexually abused seminarians.  The athletic world has similarly been shook by revelations of Michigan doctor Larry Nassar abusing hundreds of gymnasts while supposedly providing medical treatment. Ohio State's sports has suffered a variety of scandals including the recent three-game suspension of acclaimed football coach Urban Meyer for allowing his assistant coach to continue to work even after it came to light that the man abused his wife.

Albuquerque named most dangerous city for cyclists

When it comes to getting from one place to another, Americans still seem to prefer driving a car. Biking in the U.S. still seems to be a leisure activity and occasionally taking short trips. One of the reasons more people are not jumping on their bikes may be due to the lack of bike friendly infrastructure in cities around the country. American cities are certainly lagging European cities like Copenhagen and Amsterdam where bikes can easily outnumber cars.

EPA announces policy changes asbestos and hazardous materials

The Environmental Protection Agency Office of Pollution Prevention and Toxics recently announced a Significant New Use Rule (SNUR) change in policies regarding asbestos. A mineral once widely used in building materials because of its flame-retardant properties, it has since been deemed a dangerous carcinogen.

A potent reminder of the danger of some medical devices

"The Bleeding Edge" is a new documentary out on Netflix that examines the potential dangers of different medical devices and treatments. We are all aware of the dangers of human error as well as the failure of products to work as designed. This film, however, graphically details how medical devices in particular can be dangerous and yet less regulated than pharmaceuticals. The strength of the documentary message is getting coverage in the media.

Food contamination causing deaths, sickness and lots of recalls

In the spring of 2018, romaine lettuce grown in a region near Yuma, Arizona, was abruptly pulled from store shelves due to E. coli contamination. The final toll of the outbreak looked like this: 210 people from 36 states were affected, 96 people were hospitalized and 5 were killed.