About the Author

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Josh McCormack

Digital Content Curator, Salud America! Josh McCormack joined Salud America! and its home base, the Institute for Health Promotion Research at UT Health​ San Antonio, in February 2019. Graduating from Texas A&M University with a BA in English Literature, he has previously worked in journalism and publishing. Josh enjoys reading; some of his favorite authors include Stephen King, Omar El Akkad and J.R.R. Tolkien.​

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Articles by Josh McCormack

Contact Time: What is It and How Does it Impact Infection Control?

contact time for disinfection cleaning hospital bed with gloves and mask

We know germs can cause illnesses. We also know that frontline healthcare workers can take action to protect themselves, their colleagues, and their patients from infectious disease threats. Cleaning and disinfecting are two of these important actions for infection control. A fundamental part of this process is “contact time.” This is the amount of time a disinfectant must sit on a surface, without being wiped away or disturbed. Contact time allows the disinfectant to do its job: Killing germs. “There are a lot of germs in healthcare. That's no surprise to any of us,” said Dr. Abigail Carlson, an infectious diseases physician with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), as part of CDC Project Firstline’s Inside Infection Control video ...

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How Does Infection Control Work on COVID-19 Variants Like Omicron?

saludfirstline Infection control covid variants omicron

COVID-19 has changed a lot of practices for frontline healthcare workers, from screening employees and patients at entrances to wearing masks all the time. The pandemic has also taught us more about variants. As a virus like COVID-19 spreads, it can mutate and change — these changes are known as variants, such as the Delta and Omicron variants. New variants of viruses are common. Fortunately, the strategies healthcare workers use for infection control are designed to work regardless of the variant, said Dr. Abigail Carlson, an Infectious Diseases physician with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). “The tools that we use for infection control work. And the way they work for COVID-19 hasn't changed,” Carlson said. “It's all the more important to ...

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Salud Talks Episode 39: Prehabilitation and What It Means for Latinos 

saludtalks prehabilitation

Most of us know what rehabilitation is. It is care that can help you get back to normal or improve skills after a disease or injury.   Unfortunately, rehab only takes place retroactively—after there is an issue.   Prehabilitation, however, focuses on health before there is a problem.  Loriana Hernandez-Aldama, an Emmy award-winning journalist, author, and cancer survivor, calls prehabilitation the mental and physical preparation a person can take to achieve good health, from stress reduction to healthier eating.   Loriana Hernandez-Aldama joins the Salud Talks Podcast, Episode 39, to talk about the great need for prehabilitation to help Latinos stay healthy and ready to deal with disease.  LISTEN! WHAT: A #SaludTalks Podcast discussion about prehabilitation ...

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#SaludTues Tweetchat 4/5: How to Encourage and Achieve Diversity in Cancer Clinical Trials 

clinical trial doctor nurse patient help

Clinical trials have led to the development of better treatments, life-saving medicines, and new prevention strategies for many cancer types.   Still, historically, clinical trials have low representation among Latinos and other people of color.   We need diverse representation in cancer clinical trials to ensure that health and medical discoveries are equitable for diverse populations.  To promote clinical trials, let’s use #SaludTues on Tuesday, April 5, 2022, to discuss cancer clinical trials, why they are so important, and how we all can step up to increase diversity and equitable cancer research, in honor of National Minority Health Month in April.   WHAT: #SaludTues Tweetchat: How to Encourage and Achieve Diversity in Cancer Clinical Trials  TIME/DATE: 1-2 ...

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Latino Students are Facing Segregation and Its Endangering Education

Latino Students Segregation Education

Latino students face many systemic barriers to quality education, including a lack of access to preschool and little diversity among teachers.   Worse, recent research from the University of Chicago found that the number of low-income Latino children attending schools with middle-class students has fallen by 14% in 15 years. It’s a marker of an underlying issue – racial/ethnic segregation.   In fact, researchers found another uptick in white families moving out of diverse, both racially and socioeconomically, areas to white-majority areas, or white flight.   The COVID-19 pandemic adds another layer of complexity to white flight and segregation in education, according to Bruce Fuller, a Berkeley sociology professor and study leader.  “Deeper forces have sustained ...

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Report: More and More Latino Teachers are Retiring 

Latino Teachers Retiring 

Since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, many educators have retired.    Worse, teachers of color—an already underrepresented group—are retiring at higher rates than their white peers, according to new research from The National Education Association.    Their poll found that 59% of Latino educators were planning on retiring earlier than they expected. This is a worrying statistic as we know that representation in the classroom can better student of color’s education outcomes.   The problem needs attention now, according to NEA President Becky Pringle.   “This is a five-alarm crisis," Pringle said in a NEA press release. "If we’re serious about getting every child the support they need to thrive, our elected leaders across the nation need to address this ...

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How Can Omega 3 Fish Oil Supplements Help Postmenopausal Breast Cancer Patients?

Clinical Trial Graphics 2

Omega 3 fatty acids are essential nutrients. Studies show omega 3 fish oil—which contains both docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid—may help lower blood pressure, slow the development of plaque in the arteries, and reduce the likelihood of heart attack and stroke. With the rising popularity of omega 3 fish oil supplements, researchers are conducting clinical trials to test their benefits for other health issues. This is why Dr. Andrew Brenner and his team at UT Health San Antonio are seeking volunteers for his clinical trial to explore of how omega 3 fatty acids can impact postmenopausal breast cancer patients. “Fish oil supplements with omega 3 fatty acids have been shown to stop or slow down the growth and development of breast cancer cells in ...

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Latino Congressional Leaders Call for Methane Reform 

Latino Congressional Methane Reform 

Methane gas emissions have been on the rise over the past 15 years, according to recent numbers published by National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration.   Methane can deprive the body of oxygen and cause fatigue, dizziness, convulsions, and even death.   What makes this especially bad news is that 1.81 million Latino Americans live within a half-mile of an oil and gas well, which raises their risk of methane exposure.  This is why 16 members of the Congressional Hispanic Caucus are calling on the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to tighten its rules on methane emissions.  “[U]nder the current proposal, operators that calculate lower potential emissions (less than 3 tons per year of methane) could still escape regular leak monitoring. This is problematic ...

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Universities are Aiming to Meet Latino Demand for Entrepreneurship 

student entrepreneurship college

More Latinos are becoming small business owners, and many more hope to join their ranks.  Entrepreneurship continues to rise among communities of color, so much so that Latino-owned businesses have grown 34% over the last 10 years. In line with this movement, young Latino students are increasingly seeking an entrepreneur-centric education.   In response to this surge of small-business ownership, colleges and universities are pivoting to providing entrepreneurial education programs aimed at students of color, according to a recent report from the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation.  “If we can create very large, Latino-owned companies, it will profoundly affect society as well as greatly help many smaller Latino businesses and businesspeople by serving as models for them, ...

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