The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO) classify more than two dozen diseases as “vaccine preventable or potentially preventable.” Unfortunately, however, the incidence of these diseases has been rising recently, even in countries with a high standard of living and universal access to health care. WHO officials contend there is arguably no single preventive health intervention more cost-effective than immunization. Immunization averts an estimated two to three million deaths every year from diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis (whooping cough), and measles. However, an additional 1.5 million deaths could be avoided, provided global vaccination coverage improves. I was glad to read that cases of rabies have decreased thanks to those vaccines. Continue reading “National Immunization Awareness Month (NIAM)”
- Be prepared…for everything and anything! At home and at work, the most important step you can take to ensure your own safety as well as the safety of coworkers, employees, family and friends, is to prepare. For ideas, look to FEMA’s recently announced “Resolve to be Ready in 2011” campaign, which features several suggestions for disaster preparedness. What’s more, our own blog posts provide food for fodder. And, as everyone knows, I love food of any kind…fodder or otherwise.
- Drill. A timely example of how preparation is critical for saving lives occurred at a San Antonio CPS office building which caught fire on December 20. According to news’ reports, all 400 of the building’s occupants were forced to evacuate the building before 9 a.m., at which point the company’s emergency evacuation plans were put into effect. No doubt benefiting from the safety plan and associated regular fire drills, preparation paid off as every employee escaped without injury. I’m a big fan of drills, myself. But the guys at the firehouse didn’t appreciate the Chinese Fire Drill I started when we were on a recent call.
- Protect yourself from cyber-terrorism. As we rely more and more on all things electronic, we must be diligent to guard ourselves against identity theft. Four out of five victims of Identity Theft encounter serious issues as a result of the crime, such as lowered credit scores, bankruptcy, foreclosure, or even prison time. So protect your Internet passwords by creating them randomly and changing them frequently. This isn’t a huge risk for me, personally, since I don’t have opposable thumbs.
- Guard against health risks. Although the flood of sensational news’ stories about Cholera, the Swine Flu and SARS have ebbed, you still run the risk of contracting viruses and bacteria if you fail to take precautions to remain healthy. One of the easiest ways to do this is to regularly and thoroughly wash your hands (or paws, whatever the case.) Also, take advantage of vaccinations designed to protect you against illnesses such as Influenza or Respiratory Syncytial Virus.
- Consider your location. Since different types of disasters occur depending on your location, pay attention to geography and history when you prepare for natural or man-made disasters. If you live on the coast, for example, plan for tsunamis. If you get snow, make winterizing a priority. If you live near a fault line, make sure you are ready for earthquakes. No matter where you live, you should probably stock up on kibble and rawhide chews.
- Heed storm warnings. While some natural disasters, such as earthquakes, come without warning, many others are relatively easy to predict. So, if you live in an area where hurricanes or tornadoes are common, follow forecasts. And when an event is anticipated, take necessary steps to ensure your own safety as well as that of emergency workers, who might be put in harm’s way if they have to brave the elements in order to rescue you. In other words, don’t sit on your roof in a flood. This is especially true if you live in a doghouse.
- Do the right thing. Don’t cut corners. Take a cue from the recent Shanghai Fire, which some believe resulted from contractors who cut corners. Applicable to all areas of life, doing what’s right will help keep everyone safe in 2011 and beyond.
- Go green. You don’t have to be a hippie to understand the importance of protecting our planet. Today, millions of electronics are shipped to developing countries where they are dissembled, often in a crude manner, which exposes workers and the environment to contaminants such as mercury, sulfur, and lead. This practice puts us all at risk. So do your part this year to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle. You can start by sharing your leftovers instead of throwing them away. Every little bit helps! So I’ll do my part to reduce the refuse.
- Travel safely. Try to be patient if you fly. While it might be inconvenient to take off your belt, shoes and jewelry at the security gate, and possibly undergoing a TSA pat-down, these safety measures are in place to keep us safe.
- Fight fire with fire prevention. The surest way to fight fire is to prevent it. The National Fire Protection Association has sponsored Fire Prevention Week each year since the Great Chicago Fire roared through Chicago in 1871. This year’s push is to install smoke alarms. So if you haven’t installed them in your commercial property building or at home, do so today!
- Keep learning. Our corporate mission is to save lives through training with the motto “Be Safe!” The RJWestmore Training System 2.0 is a fully integrated system which allows property management companies to manage one site or an entire portfolio, with all users in the same system.
If you own or manage commercial property, by enrolling in the system, please consider our system, which trains occupants, floor wardens, and fire safety directors. What’s more; all user training and testing is recorded. Get quick access to building-specific Emergency Responder information and other resources. We hope you’ll allow us to do our part to help keep you safe in 2011 and beyond.
When a disaster strikes, prior planning and clear decisive action can help save lives. For the latest emergency management training for facility/building managers, contact RJWestmore, Inc. Our new Version 2.0 e-based training system offers the best emergency training system with automated and integrated features. Visit RJWestmore.com for more information and remember to BE SAFE.
Since we take safety so seriously in our home, we’ve been preparing for the flu season for quite some time. Aside from avoiding crowded areas and incessantly washing our paws, we’ve also tried to bone up on as many swine flu facts as possible.
Fortunately, we had a little extra time at the fire station this week, as all the fires in the area have finally began to die down. So I did a little research. Education is important because, even if you don’t get the virus yourself, you might still pass it on to others. The spread of swine flu can stop with you.
If you have any young pups, it’s especially important to get them vaccinated, because they’re the most vulnerable. But until the vaccine is readily available, it’s probably best to spend as much time indoors as possible.
- If you suspect you might have the swine flu, you’ll want to make a quick visit to your vet (or, if you are not a canine, your doctor). Even if the bug that you have turns out to be a cold, there’s no such thing as being too careful when it comes to containing the swine flu. For a list of symptoms, check out this view of the swine flu.
- If you have any young pups, it’s especially important to vaccinate them, because they’re the most vulnerable. The H1N1 vaccine and spray applications will be available soon.
- You know what they say. (Whoever they are?) An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. So, the best way to control the spread of the swine flu is to avoid catching it in the first place. And the best way to do that is to stay inside.
At the doghouse, with my entire family cooped up inside, it’s hard to keep from going stir-crazy. Poor JR, my son, was chasing his tail for days until the wife and I came up with some ways to keep him busy. Here are a few family-friendly ideas we’ve come up with to keep us safe, as well as entertained.
- Instead of going to the park, where there are germs lurking everywhere, we’ve started hosting picnics in our front yard.
- Rather than eating out, we enjoy our rawhides inside, as a family. (This also saves us money.)
- Though we used to spend a lot of time at the library, we’ve been staying at home, inventing our own stories to tell each other.
The swine flu scare is bound to dissipate, as time goes on. So why not take this opportunity to enjoy relaxing at home? One day, you might be able to credit the virus for making you creative and close-knit as a family. There are several websites that offer ideas for staying safe, and simultaneously entertained. One that my wife likes the most is Family Fun Magazine.
Once again, our friends at RJWestmore, Inc. urge you, as always, to be prepared, and BE SAFE!