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BY DR. EDITH BRACHO-SANCHEZ

(NEW YORK) -- Rates of HIV infection are on the rise in 50 countries with more than 1.8 million people becoming infected in 2017, a far cry from goals established for the near future, according to a new United Nations report.

The report, entitled Miles to Go, published earlier this week by the Joint United Nations Program on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS), said the pace of progress in saving lives and preventing new infections is “not matching the global ambition” of cutting the infection rate to 500,000 a year by 2020.

While the death rate from AIDS-related illnesses -- 940,000 in 2017 -- is the lowest this century, it is still nearly double the goal of reducing AIDS-related deaths to 500,000 or fewer by 2020, according to the report.

”New HIV infections are not falling fast enough,” UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé wrote in the report. “HIV prevention services are not being provided on an adequate scale and with sufficient intensity, and are not reaching the people who need them the most.”

Vulnerable populations account for a large proportion of the new HIV cases and the deaths from the infection, according to the report. It said 180,000 children became infected in 2017, and 110,000 children died from AIDS-related illnesses. The goal of the agency was to eliminate new infections in children by 2018.

Other vulnerable populations also seem to carry an elevated portion of the burden -- including sex workers, gay men and other men who have sex with men, prisoners, migrants and refugees -- often spurred by “stigma and discrimination,” according to the report.

“The very people who are meant to be protecting, supporting and healing people living with HIV often discriminate against the people who should be in their care, denying access to critical HIV services, resulting in more HIV infections and more deaths,” Sidibé wrote. “It is the responsibility of the state to protect everyone. Human rights are universal.”

Dr. Elizabeth Lowenthal, research director for the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia's Global Health Program and pediatric clinical core director at the University of Pennsylvania’s Center for AIDS Research, told ABC News that it is important to look first at places where the goals have been met.

Lowenthal has provided care to children and families affected by HIV infection in Botswana, where there has been “very strong political commitment, administrative support, and partnerships with experts who can provide their clinical expertise and help identify key populations.”

Botswana is one of the six countries that have achieved what is known as the 90-90-90 targets -- 90 percent of people with HIV know they have HIV; 90 percent of those diagnosed are receiving treatment; and, of those receiving treatment, 90 percent have accomplished suppression of their viral load or the level of HIV virus that is detectable in their blood.

The UNAIDS report spoke of yet another important driver of the epidemic: violence against women and girls.

“Gender inequality, intimate partner violence, and parental and spousal consent laws leave women and girls vulnerable to HIV, other sexually transmitted infections, unwanted pregnancies and maternal mortality,” the report read.

Lowenthal said she sees this firsthand in her work.

“Women living with HIV infection who are victims of domestic violence or gender-based violence often can’t even tell people in their family they have HIV because of fear for their safety,” Lowenthal told ABC News.

For women suffering from violence, it can also be difficult to negotiate ways to protect themselves against HIV such as condoms, which Lowenthal said highlights the importance of “giving women more choices like PrEP,” or pre-exposure prophylaxis, a daily pill containing combination HIV medications that can prevent HIV infection.

“As doctors caring for children with HIV, our goal is to put ourselves out of business, and there is no excuse for not achieving that goal,” Lowenthal said. “What is needed is a strong political commitment in both home and donor countries and implementation science research to clarify how we can bridge the gap between where we are and where we want to be.”

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(Courtesy Devon McCabe) Quick thinking by 3-year-old Molly McCabe helped save her father, who was suffering from an undiscovered blood clot inside his brain.(NEW YORK) -- When three-year-old Molly McCabe saw her dad fall off the couch and onto the floor, she thought it was just another one of the games they played together.

But minutes passed, and her father remained still, and the suddenly scared toddler began to cry and plead, "Daddy, get up. Daddy's what's wrong?"

That's when she picked up her father's cellphone and used FaceTime to call her mother at work.

"I answered and she was sobbing and crying. And she was just saying, 'Daddy, daddy, look at daddy,'" Molly's mother Devon McCabe told ABC News.

Then Molly turned the phone to face her father, and McCabe saw her husband Trevor collapsed on the floor of their Winchester, Virginia, home.

"I just started shaking all over from head to toe. Even though I'm an intensive care nurse, I couldn't even think straight. And Molly kept telling me, 'Mommy please come home.'"

McCabe comforted her distraught toddler as she called neighbors and friends, who rushed to Trevor's aid and took him to hospital.

It was there that doctors discovered Trevor had a clot in an artery in his brain that very few people survive from, and treated him for it.

Just over two weeks later, Trevor is on the way to recovery -- and McCabe calls her little daughter "the biggest miracle" that saved his life.

"I'm still shocked," she said of the July 4 incident. "I still can't believe everything that happened."

The feat by her daughter was especially remarkable because the little girl doesn't yet know how to read, and there's no picture of McCabe next to her contact information on Trevor's phone.

"So she knew which one to pick that called me. She recognized the letters that make up my name in my husband's phone," McCabe said. "She didn't call anyone else that day, it's not like she accidentally called me. And I wasn't the most recent call so it wasn't like she just picked my name off the top. So I think she just remembered that when daddy calls mommy, this is what the letters look like."

A few days later, as Trevor was set to undergo a procedure to fix the hole in his heart, McCabe's coworkers gifted McCabe and both her daughters, Molly and 2-year-old Maggie, superhero costumes to celebrate the fact that Molly rescued her father. The little girl loved it so much that she refused to take it off and even napped in it.

Molly is still somewhat traumatized by the experience, however, so the McCabes are considering therapy to get her through it. They are using a GoFundMe page to raise funds for Trevor's therapy, because both parents are on unpaid medical leave.

As for Trevor - McCabe posted a picture of him smiling on her Facebook page on Thursday, captioned, "And 15 days after I almost lost him, we headed to rehab <3."

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Credit: James Gathany/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention(WASHINGTON) -- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have traced a multistate outbreak of multidrug-resistant Salmonella infections to raw turkey products.

The CDC says 90 people in 26 different states have been infected with the strain of Salmonella they've been tracking. Forty of those people have been hospitalized.

There have been no reported deaths linked to the outbreak.

Officials say the bacteria has been identified in samples of raw turkey pet food, raw turkey products and live turkeys. No single supplier of the products has been identified.

Two people who were infected lived in a household where raw turkey pet food was fed to pets, according to the CDC.

On its website, the CDC recommends the following tips to help prevent Salmonella:

"Wash your hands. Salmonella infections can spread from one person to another. Wash hands before and after preparing or eating food, after contact with animals, and after using the restroom or changing diapers."

"Cook raw turkey thoroughly to kill harmful germs. Turkey breasts, whole turkeys, and ground poultry, including turkey burgers, casseroles, and sausage, should always be cooked to an internal temperature of 165°F to kill harmful germs. Leftovers should be reheated to 165°F. Use a food thermometer to check, and place it in the thickest part of the food."

"Don’t spread germs from raw turkey around food preparation areas. Washing raw poultry before cooking is not recommended. Germs in raw poultry juices can spread to other areas and foods. Thoroughly wash hands, counters, cutting boards, and utensils with warm, soapy water after they touch raw turkey. Use a separate cutting board for raw turkey and other raw meats if possible."

"CDC does not recommend feeding raw diets to pets. Germs like Salmonella in raw pet food can make your pets sick. Your family also can get sick by handling the raw food or by taking care of your pet."

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Creatas/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- High-protein diets are all the rage. Look on grocery shelves and you will probably find protein bars, protein powder or other foods with labels proclaiming that it is "high-protein."

But what exactly does protein do for your body, and how much of it do you really need?

Joey Thurman, a Chicago-based celebrity trainer and certified fitness nutrition specialist, is here with everything you need to know about protein.

What is protein's role in the body?

You need protein for just about every function in your body, from brain-cell communications to building and repairing muscle.

Protein is key in our bodies by providing structure and strength to our cells and tissues, controlling biochemical reactions and helping our immune systems. Our metabolism is regulated by proteins as well as hormones. Proteins also help cell division, which will help with replenishing aged or damaged cells to provide a constant supply of healthy cells.

How much protein do I need?

Protein needs vary based on activity level and gender. In general, men weigh more than women and require more calories to maintain weight, so basic protein requirements for men are higher. But everyone is different and you can calculate your own needs based on your weight and activity level.

The recommended dietary allowance (RDA), which describes the minimum amount of a nutrient recommended for health, for protein is 0.36 grams per day, per pound of body weight.

So if you weigh 150 pounds and work in a desk job, which is considered sedentary, that’s about 54 grams of protein per day. That translates to 216 calories, or 10 percent of a 2,000-calorie daily diet.

To calculate how many grams of protein you need each day, just multiply your weight in pounds by .36.

Women who are pregnant or nursing and people with kidney or liver disease may have different protein needs, and should consult with their doctors.

Do I need more protein as I get older?

Protein requirements don’t change much based on your age, but there is increasing evidence that we may need more protein as we get older to prevent muscle and bone loss, accompanied by a weight-bearing exercise program.

A 2015 study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition showed evidence that adults over 50 should aim for about double the RDA amount, so around 0.68 grams of protein per pound.

What if I exercise?

If you are more active, these requirements will need to be higher as your body will need to build and repair your muscle tissue to make up for the stress of activity to your body.

If you are very active and get at least 35 to 40 minutes of exercise four to five days a week, including resistance training twice a week, you should bump up your protein intake to 0.5 to 0.9 grams per pound of body weight per day.

There are exceptions to this rule, such as professional athletes and bodybuilders, who will need to go higher than these levels to upwards of 2 grams of protein per pound.

What are the best sources of protein?

Now that you have figured out how much protein you need, where should you get it from?

Protein can come from many sources, and you should try to choose several sources to get a variety of nutrients. A common misconception is that people need to only eat animal products to get protein.

There is protein in all sorts of plants, even things that are green. In fact, you tend to get a high protein-calorie ratio in plant-based proteins over meat equivalents. Yet another reason to try a "Meatless Monday," or even add more days with alternatives to meat proteins.

It is important to eat healthy protein-rich foods, including fish. A six-ounce serving of wild salmon has 34 grams of protein and only 1.7 grams of saturated fat.

Other good sources of protein are lean meat, poultry, eggs, beans, peas, soy products, and unsalted nuts and seeds.

Steer clear of protein sources with unhealthy fats, such as processed red meat, cold cuts and hot dogs.

Do I need protein supplements?

Your protein sources should come from whole foods first and supplements second.

Remember, supplements are meant to add to your diet, not replace foods.

What about protein powder?

The two main types of protein powder are whey protein powder, which is made from milk, and plant-based protein powders, which are made from pea protein, brown rice, flax or other sources.

The average serving size of protein powder has around 20 to 25 grams of protein.

Whey protein can be absorbed fast in your body and is a great source of protein to grab before or after a workout and on the run. Plant-based proteins are beneficial because they are often packed full of vegetables.

But, beware of sugar and other additives, which can be loaded into protein shakes.

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iStock/Thinkstock(SARASOTA, Fla.) -- A 71-year-old man died from a flesh-eating bacteria that health officials say he contracted from eating a bad raw oyster at a Florida seafood restaurant.

Florida Health Department officials said the man died from Vibrio vulnificus two days after eating a raw oyster and coming down with a gastrointestinal illness.

The death came on the heels of a warning earlier this week from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) that 12 people throughout the nation contracted the Vibrio bacteria by eating fresh Venezuelan crab meat. None of those cases were fatal.

The name of the man who died, a Sarasota County, Florida, resident, was not released nor was the restaurant where he ate the bad oyster.

"The individual who died was exposed to Vibrio vulnificus through consuming a raw oyster," the health department said in a statement to ABC News.

Officials said the man became gravely ill after eating the bad oyster on July 8 and that he died on July 10.

The department also confirmed that there were four other cases of Vibrio in the state in the past week, but none of those were fatal or in Sarasota County.

Health officials said the causes of the other cases of Vibrio are under investigation. Vibrio can also be contracted by swimming in warm saltwater with fresh cuts or scrapes.

Florida health officials said it was the first case and fatality involving the flesh-eating bacteria in Sarasota County this year. Nearby Manatee County has had one case of flesh-eating bacteria so far in 2018, but it was not deadly, officials said.

There were 11 deaths reported in Florida from Vibrio in 2017.

Meanwhile, the CDC said the Vibrio illnesses caused by the Venezuelan crab meat occurred in Maryland, Louisiana, Pennsylvania, and Washington, D.C.

"CDC recommends that consumers not eat, restaurants not serve, and retailers [do] not sell precooked fresh crab meat imported from Venezuela until further notice," the federal agency said in a statement. "This type of product may be labeled as fresh or precooked. It is commonly found in plastic containers. Food contaminated with Vibrio usually looks, smells, and tastes normal.

"If you buy crab meat and do not know whether it is from Venezuela, do not eat, serve, or sell it," the agency said. "Throw it away."

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iStock/ThinkstockBY: DR. STEPHANIE SOPHIE LEE

(NEW YORK) -- Fertility treatments come with repeated shots of hormones, but does that mean they also come with an increased risk of cancer?

Not necessarily, according to a study published recently in the British Medical Journal.

With assisted reproductive technology (ART), women are exposed to high levels of estrogen and progesterone during each “cycle” of treatment, in which hormones are used to stimulate egg growth and release into the womb. Often multiple cycles are needed to produce a successful pregnancy. Those hormones are known risk factors for breast, uterine, and ovarian cancers when they appear in excess.

To evaluate the risks of these cancers, Alastair Sutcliffe, a professor at University College London Institute of Child Health, and his research team followed more than 250,000 British women for an average of nine years, averaging nearly two treatment cycles overall, and monitored how many of them developed cancer.

“What we were really interested in is for the ladies -- did they have long-term downstream effects in terms of risks of cancers?” Sutcliffe, who also published a 2013 complementary study in New England Journal of Medicine about the risk of cancer in children born from ART, told ABC News.

The results were good news, with no overall increased risk of breast cancer, even when looking only at invasive (or malignant) breast cancer. There was also no overall increased risk of uterine cancer unless women had additional risk factors such as polycystic ovary disease.

There was a higher rate of invasive and borderline ovarian tumors, although these were in women with pre-existing risk factors, such as endometriosis, and therefore not surprising.

“Those women were already known to be at high risk of ovarian cancer, and the finding didn’t seem to be due to those [fertility] treatments,” Sutcliffe explained.

There was a surprising finding -- a small risk of non-invasive (in-situ) breast cancer, a type of localized breast cancer that can be quickly treated and with much better outcomes than invasive types, was associated with the number of treatment cycles.

“It was an unexpected hiccup," Sutcliffe said. "There is the possibility the finding was due to increased surveillance, and it was only with in-situ breast cancer."

Researching cancer risks are important and Dr. Wendy Kuohung, an obstetrics and gynecology specialist, said that fertility treatment counseling has to address it, even though there’s still uncertainty.

“We tell patients that we aren’t sure whether these fertility treatments will increase the risk of breast, uterine, or ovarian cancer because their diagnosis of [and reason for] infertility at baseline may be predisposing them," Kuohung, the director of the reproductive endocrinology and infertility program at Boston Medical Center, told ABC News. "It’s hard to tease out if treatment is the cause.”

Although this study was a great start at evaluating long-term data and demonstrating no risk of specific cancers, more studies will need to be done to further analyze the small increases in other cancers, especially in-situ breast cancer.

Sutcliffe said his future research will turn to additional health concerns after fertility treatments and “we will start looking at cardiovascular disease and mental health, too,” which may take a few more years.

In the meantime, women still have to weigh personal risks and benefits with their physician, but the decision may be a little easier knowing this study demonstrates there are fewer long-term invasive cancer risks than people fear.

Dr. Stephanie Sophie Lee is a pediatrician and preventive medicine resident in South Carolina and a resident in the ABC News Medical Unit.

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KTRK-TV(HOUSTON) -- A Texas family is hoping for a miracle after tragedy struck on a vacation to Mexico.

Francisco and Emily Barba, along with their 11-month-old daughter Emma Rose, went on a trip to San Luis Potosi, Mexico to visit Francisco’s extended family. It was Emma Rose’s first time travelling.

On Saturday, July 14th, one day before they were meant to return to Texas, Emma Rose fell ill with what at first seemed to be a stomach ache. Upon arrival at the hospital, however, doctors quickly determined Emma Rose required surgery.

Unfortunately, there was a complication with the surgery. According to a GoFundMe page started for the child, the complication caused liquid to pool around her lungs and now she is in the intensive care unit at another hospital, on a breathing machine.

The family is hoping that they can get a medical flight on Thursday to take Emma Rose from the hospital in Mexico to Houston Children’s Hospital. The issue facing the Barba family is that medical flights cost between $18,000 and $30,000, according to the fundraising page and the family’s Medicaid does not cover international costs.

In light of this situation, the couple took to the popular fundraising page GoFundMe to raise money to pay for this medical flight to save Emma Rose’s life.

The page states, “they say that the worst thing in life, for a parent, is to see their child suffering. Unfortunately Emma’s parents, Francisco and Emily Barba, are going through that stage right now.”

As of Thursday morning, the page has been shared on social media 1,300 times and has raised over $20,000.

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ABC News(NEW YORK) -- Forty years after the first ever “test tube baby” Louise Joy Brown was born, 33 percent of American adults report using fertility treatment or knowing someone who used fertility treatment to have a baby, according to a new study.

Born as a result of in-vitro fertilization, or IVF, baby Louise paved the way for what some estimate could be seven million IVF babies born worldwide after her.

The IVF procedure involves creating fertilized embryos from donor eggs and sperm in the lab, then implanting them in a woman's uterus. "In Vitro" translates literally from Latin to "in glass," referring to the glass test tubes, now petri dishes, that doctors use when fertilizing the eggs.

"We have a little bit of science, a little bit of magic, a little bit of unknown," John Belon, a senior endocrinologist at Genesis Fertility Clinic in Brooklyn, New York, told ABC News.

"The basic premise in all in-vitro fertilization cycles is that the eggs are removed from a woman's body, fertilized in vitro or in the petri dish and then the resulting embryos are at some point put back into the womb where the baby grows hopefully uneventfully," Dr. Richard Grazi, medical director at Genesis Ferity Clinic told ABC News.

IVF is one form of what the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention calls "assisted reproductive technology," or ART.

Based on CDC reports of fertility-assisted births from the states, the Pew Research Center estimates that more than one million babies have been born in the U.S. using these procedures since 1996.

“It makes me proud to be the first and to know the great doctors, Bob and Patrick and mom and dad paved the way for lots of couples to be able to have families of their own,” Louise Joy Brown said at the Midwest Reproductive Symposium International in Chicago in June.

Generally, certain groups of people have been more likely to use fertitility treatments.

Education level is one of the factors that could affect the likelihood, according to the Pew research study. About 43 percent of people with bachelor’s degrees reported having "some exposure" to fertility treatment. That number rose to 56 percent for those who had earned a post-graduate degree.

Race and money factored in, as well. Whites were most likely to have undergone fertility treatment, or to know someone who has, at 37 percent. Hispanics were next most likely at 26 percent, followed closely by blacks at 22 percent, according to the Pew study. In terms of income, families with incomes of $75,000 or more were more likely to have been exposed to fertility treatment.

Although women were a little more likely than men to have encountered fertility treatments in the Pew study -- 36 percent vs. 30 percent -- women and men have similar rates of infertility, Grazi said.

"About half of infertility either is attributed to a male factor only or male factor in addition to female factor," he noted.

ART procedures to help women conceive can become very expensive. The average IVF cycle costs around $10,000 including medications, Grazi said.

Some insurance companies cover the cost of fertility treatments, while others do not.

Advocacy groups like Resolve are working to change state laws to require insurance companies to cover infertility treatments, but this is not currently mandated.

About two percent of births in the U.S. result from some form of ART procedure, according to Pew.

Brown said she finds the progress in these treatments, which began with her parents and doctors, is inspiring.

"I think it’s excellent that it gives people hope and they can still have a family," she said.

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Instagram/ Morgan Beck(NEW YORK) -- Just over five weeks since losing her baby girl in a tragic drowning death, Morgan Beck Miller spoke at length on Tuesday about raising awareness for water safety and how she hopes no other parent will have to go through what she has endured in recent weeks.

"It’s been 37 days since I’ve held my baby girl," she wrote on Instagram.

The volleyball star and her Olympic skier husband Bode Miller announced on June 11 that their 19-month-old daughter, Emmy, had died in a drowning accident at a neighbor’s house.

"I pray to God no other parent feels this pain," she continued in her new post.

But Beck Miller continued her post by raising awareness and thanking a fellow mom for sharing a similar story, having also lost her young child to a drowning incident.

"My heart is with you @nicolehughes8 as we walk this journey together. And thank you @scarymommy for helping us spread awareness," she added. "Drowning is the NUMBER ONE cause of death in children ages 1-4 ... It takes SECONDS. Please share and help us spread awareness. It’s the first step to preventing these types of tragedies. #drowning #drowningprevention #truthaboutdrowning."

In Beck Miller's Instagram bio, she linked out to Nicole Hughes' story in the Scary Mommy blog titled, "My Toddler Drowned This Summer, And Here’s What I Want You To Know."

In Beck Miller's Instagram bio, she linked out to Nicole Hughes' story in the Scary Mommy blog titled, "My Toddler Drowned This Summer, And Here’s What I Want You To Know."

n the piece, Hughes gets personal, writing, "We were never supposed to leave our beach vacation early to plan a funeral for our 3-year-old son. And, yet, within the course of one week, we had driven to the beach, returned without him, and held his funeral."

The death of her son Levi took place around the same time the Millers lost their daughter.

"How could I have known that every parent’s worst nightmare would be my reality? It happened so quickly," she writes. "I was the one who found him, face down, in the deep end. Just moments before this horrific discovery, I split a brownie with him."

In the piece, she adds statistics and details about how silent and fast a drowning death can be for a toddler.

"This is a LEADING cause of death, and it is 100% PREVENTABLE," she added. "You can read more about my mission (and about designated supervision) at www.levislegacy.com."

Water-safety experts told "GMA" last month that one simple solution to keep your kids safe this summer is to always have a water watcher on hand, somebody who stands next to the pool and is constantly scanning the water for any signs of distress.

The water watcher can be rotated every 15 minutes or so, should know CPR, has a working phone and is alert and not under any influence.

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Coughing, headaches, runny noses. Nobody likes to feel sick, so they turn to a doctor for advice.

With people more frequently turning to urgent cares and retail clinics to seek healthcare when they get sick, experts are starting to examine the effect of antibiotics prescribed in these settings.

New research from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta, Georgia, University of Utah, and The Pew Charitable Trusts suggests that doctors may be overprescribing antibiotics, both in urgent care and retail clinic settings and in more traditional medical spaces: emergency rooms and doctor’s offices.

A study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association – Internal Medicine reveals the statistics. Dr. Katherine Fleming-Dutra and her research team showed that for respiratory or airway tract related illnesses, antibiotic medications were inappropriately prescribed in 45.7% of urgent care visits, 24.6% of emergency room visits, 17.0% of medical office visits and 14.4% of retail clinic visits.

“There is a lot of room to improve outpatient antibiotic prescribing. All of these settings have room to improve,” Dr. Fleming-Dutra, M.D., the lead investigator of the study and the Deputy Director of the CDC Office of Antibiotic Stewardship, told ABC News.

Every doctor and patient wishes for a pill that could cure any pain or symptom, but researchers are continuing to find evidence that extra care needs to be taken with antibiotic prescriptions.

What are antibiotics?

They fight what are often called “germs:” bacteria. But people can become infected with viruses, fungi, or parasites as well, and antibiotics don’t work against those.

The CDC definition: A type of drug that can kill or stop the growth of bacteria. An example would be penicillin.

What is antibiotic resistance?


If a medication kills almost all of the bacteria present during an infection, sometimes a few might survive – they have adapted themselves to survive the antibiotic.

When this happens, that adapted, resistant germ can continue to multiply and the infection can grow. Eventually, the new bacteria may spread to other people or animals – and the original antibiotic doesn’t work against it.

According to the CDC, over 2 million people every year become infected with bacteria that are resistant to antibiotics. Over 23,000 people die as a direct result of these infections every year.

What is a superbug?

A superbug is a bacteria that has high levels of resistance to many different antibiotics.

One example: drug resistant Neisseria gonorrhoeae, the bacteria that causes gonorrhea, a sexually transmitted infection. The CDC reports 246,000 cases of drug-resistant gonorrhea infections per year.

Why is unnecessary antibiotic use a problem?

“Antibiotics are life-saving medications,” Dr. Fleming-Dutra told ABC News. “They are very important to medicine and medical care. They allow us to prevent and treat bacterial infections. They allow us to treat people with cancer, chemotherapy, and surgery who depend on the ability to prevent and treat infections. That is why resistance is such an important issue.”

Unnecessary antibiotic use directly contributes to antibiotic resistance. When people take antibiotics more frequently, it provides more chances for bacteria to adapt and learn to fight off modern drugs. There are currently a limited number of different antibiotics and scientists are having a hard time creating new drugs that can keep up with new superbugs.

Unnecessary antibiotics can harm people as well. “All antibiotics, like all medications, have side-effects and risks,” said Dr. Fleming-Dutra. They can cause “mild side-effects like rashes or yeast infections” or “quite serious reactions that are life-threatening.”

Antibiotics can kill helpful bacteria and make it more likely for us to develop a harmful bacterial infection. Clostridium difficile or “C. difficile” is directly related to antibiotic use and contributes to 250,000 illness and 14,000 deaths per year, according to the CDC. C. difficile is the scourge of hospitals and results in over $1 billion in preventable medical costs per year.

When do people not need antibiotics?

Since antibiotics only work against bacterial infections, common illnesses that are caused by viruses do not benefit from antibiotic use.

That includes the common cold, most cases of sore throat (known as viral pharyngitis), and chest colds (known as acute bronchitis). They are not caused by bacteria. Antibiotics will not be helpful for any of these conditions.

How big a problem is overprescribing?

People want an answer when they are sick; if they go to the doctor, they want to come out with a prescription. But prior research from the CDC suggests that 30% of antibiotic prescriptions in doctor’s offices, hospital-based clinics, and emergency departments are not needed.

Then why do doctors do it?

Doctors are trained to know when antibiotic medications are necessary. However, they often prescribe medications because they have preconceived thoughts about what patients want and strive to provide satisfying customer service.

“We know from previous research doctors are more likely to prescribe an antibiotic if they think a patient might want one,” Dr. Fleming-Dutra told ABC News.

What can be done about it?

A multi-pronged approach is necessary, according to the CDC.

The CDC encourages appropriate antibiotic use: starting drugs only when necessary and stopping at the right time. They are working with organizations such as the Urgent Care Association of America to promote the appropriate use of antibiotics.

What you need to know and what you can do?

The best thing a patient can do is talk to your doctor. “Ask when antibiotics are needed and not needed,” suggests Dr. Fleming-Dutra. “Do not pressure your healthcare provider to prescribe medications but ask 'What can I do to feel better?' Ask when you should return if you do not get better or if your symptoms get worse. Communication is key."

It is also important to take medication as prescribed. Take it exactly as directed, the entire course of medications, so there is none left over to “save.” Never take someone else’s medications and do not share antibiotics.

Of course, an ounce of prevention is better than a pound of cure. Dr. Fleming-Dutra recommends steps to limit spreading germs in the first place. “Washing your hands, covering your cough and staying home when you are sick. And of course getting recommended vaccines.”



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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- Forget the traditional office pool to buy a coworker who is expecting a baby a car seat or stroller.

The new trend is to give a pregnant coworker some of your own vacation time to add days to her maternity leave.

Angela Hughes, of Kansas City, Missouri, was less than a year into her job in the registrar’s office of a private college when her daughter was born two months early.

Hughes did not qualify for any paid maternity leave because she was so new at her job. She said she never took a day off during her entire pregnancy so she could save as much vacation time as possible for after the baby was born.

Her boss, sensing her stress, donated 80 hours of her own paid time off to Hughes through a policy at the college allowing the practice. More coworkers followed suit and, in the end, Hughes had eight weeks of paid maternity leave, almost all of which was donated by coworkers.

Hughes used four weeks of the leave immediately after her cesarean section and then another four weeks when her daughter, Bella, was discharged from her hospital's neonatal intensive care unit nearly three months after her birth. Bella is now 1.

“It took a weight off of my family’s shoulder,” Hughes of the donated vacation time. “Having a baby is a huge adjustment anyway but having a premature baby, my emotions were all over the place.”

The donated vacation time may also have saved her health insurance because she was able to take time off as paid rather than unpaid leave, Hughes said.

“It really, really meant a lot to me,” she said of her coworkers’ generosity. “I was very surprised because I had not been with the company very long. I was extremely appreciative and very humbled.”

The United States is the only country among 41 industrialized nations that does not mandate paid maternity leave, according to 2016 data from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).

Things are looking up for some new moms, but it depends on the employer. The prevalence of paid maternity leave increased significantly between 2016 and 2018, from 26 percent to 35 percent, according to the Society for Human Resource Management (SHRM) 2018 Employee Benefits Survey.

The decision on whether or not to allow employees to donate their paid time off is left up to individual employers and governments.

The 2018 Employee Benefits Survey, which is not a scientific study, found that 15 percent of U.S. employers allow employees to donate paid time off to coworkers.

State launches 'Maternity Leave Donation Program'
Jessie Sampson, 31, of Nebraska, like Hughes in Missouri, benefited from this new trend.

Sampson, who works for the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services, took advantage of a new policy that allows state employees to donate vacation days specifically for coworkers' maternity leave.

Under the new program, Sampson was able to take 12 weeks of paid maternity leave with her second son, Liam, thanks to her coworkers.

Nebraska does not offer state employees dedicated paid maternity leave.

"I had more bonding time with my child and I was able to establish a much better breastfeeding routine," Sampson said. "That’s time [my colleagues] could be spending relaxing and to give it to me to spend time with my child, I’m really grateful for that."

In contrast, when Sampson gave birth to her older son, Gram, by C-section three years ago, she was able to take only eight weeks of maternity leave, mostly unpaid.

Nebraska's maternity leave donation program, enacted in January by Gov. Pete Ricketts, allows new moms who work for the state to receive donated time once they have used their own accrued sick time.

Employees within a state agency where a new mom works get an email that they can reply to and anonymously donate their paid time off. The new mom then finds out during her maternity leave how much additional time she has received.

"I went in thinking I wouldn’t get any donated time so I could plan for that," said Sampson, who said she gets around 12 days of paid sick and vacation time each year. "I figured anything I got would be an awesome bonus."

Nebraska's policy came about in part after Gov. Ricketts' chief human resources officer, Jason Jackson, began working with a pregnant employee in his office to develop a new work-life balance for her that would "not have a disruption to her earning potential."

"That was one of the data points that we were looking at, saying, 'Hey, this is a more generalizable issue for women in state government,'" Jackson told "GMA." "We were searching for solutions to that problem that would enable women and expectant mothers to be able to better balance their career in public service and continue their career in public service while also being able to provide care for their child in those first weeks after childbirth."

State governments set their own guidelines on time off for employees and some, like Nebraska, have no dedicated paid family leave program for either new mothers or fathers.

The federal government -- which also does not have a dedicated paid family leave program -- has a voluntary leave transfer program that allows employees to donate annual leave directly to coworkers who have had a family or medical emergency (including childbirth) and have exhausted their own paid leave.

Improving the work-life balance for women

It makes sense that employers are doing what they can to improve the work-life balance for women.

Seventy percent of mothers with children under 18 participate in the labor force, and among that group, over 75 percent are employed full-time. Moms are the primary or sole earners for 40 percent of households with children under 18 today, compared with 11 percent of households in 1960, according to the U.S. Department of Labor.

"Across industry – public sector or private – employers are increasingly recognizing we’re doing ourselves a disservice when, through our own policies, we push women out of the workforce before they would otherwise elect to make those life decisions on their own," Jackson in Nebraska said. "If we can make those choices easier ... then we’ll continue to benefit from their talents and their service and their dedication to the state."

Since Nebraska began the program in January, nearly 15,000 of its state employees have taken part, either by donating time or accepting it as a new mother.

"My sister had kids 15 months apart and with the first child she took six weeks off and with the second she took even less time than that, and she’s a nurse," Sampson said. "So I think about other jobs like the one my sister had and jobs I’ve had previously had, and I just feel lucky that [Nebraska] put this program in place."

Jackson, the state's chief human resources officer, said he has not heard criticism from employees who want a "more robust [paid maternity leave] offering" instead of the more piecemeal approach of allowing donated time.

He noted that the maternity-leave donation program is of no cost to taxpayers or the state because employees are using paid time off that will be lost if not used.

"The [paid time off] being granted to the beneficiary is already a liability that the state has, so it costs no money and allows us to do something substantive for the women in our workforce to continue their careers," Jackson said. "I think everybody recognizes that this is a step in the right direction."

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iStock/Thinkstock(LOS ANGELES) -- It was a scene straight out of a horror movie -- a woman covered from head to toe in a shroud of angry killer bees.

They attack her eyes and nose, crawling into her mouth when she opens it to scream. The stings only intensify as she tries to protect her head.

Horrified people stand around her. Unable to move closer, unable to help.

"It was so horrendous. It was awful. And I felt so powerless. There was nothing I could do," Cynthia Emmett, an onlooker, told ABC station KABC-TV in Los Angeles.

This was the shocking sight firefighters arrived to on Monday morning after responding to a call about a bee attack in Orange County, California.

A day after the attack, the victim is still in critical condition but is expected to survive, Orange County Fire Authority Capt. Tony Bommarito told ABC News.

The woman, known only as Maria, was stung at least 200 times by thousands of hybrid Africanized honey bees (Apis mellifera scutellata), also sometimes referred to as "killer bees," said Nicole Sorenson of Bee Busters, the company called in to remove the bees after Monday's attack.

These kinds of bees, which make up 70 percent of the bees found in the region, are extremely aggressive and can form their very large nests in proximity to humans, such as in chimneys, sprinkler boxes or -- as was the case in this incident -- in gas meters, Sorenson told ABC News.

By the time firefighters arrived at the scene of the attack, there was no time to wear protective gear. So firefighters entered the area unprotected, used a carbon dioxide fire extinguisher to spray on the bees, and ran with the woman until they were far enough from the bees, authorities said.

Two of the firefighters were stung badly enough to be admitted to hospital, but they received medical care and were released for active duty the same day.

The victim, Maria, was a housekeeper. The owner of the house, Sara, witnessed the attack and was stung as well, ABC station KABC-TV in Los Angeles reports.

"She was screaming and I was telling her, 'Move from the bees. Come over here.,'" Sara said, displaying her swollen arms where the bees attacked her too. "But she was covering her head."

Sara said she did notice a few bees in the area but didn't think anything of it, according to the report.

Sorenson of Bee Busters warned that people often don't take the threat from bees seriously enough.

"North American bumblebees are going extinct, however honeybees are at an all-time high," she said. "We get a lot of calls from people who want to relocate these bees, and it's very hard to explain to them that these are the kinds of bees that do exactly what happened to this woman. We want to alert the community that this is a real and present danger."

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iStock/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Only 43 percent of school districts in the United States test for lead in drinking water used by students in 2016 or 2017, according to a federal government report released Tuesday.

The report from the Government Accountability Office also found that of the 43 percent of school districts that test for lead in drinking water 37 percent found elevated levels above the level requiring action. The remaining 41 percent of districts said they did not test for lead and 16 percent of districts surveyed did not know if they tested for lead, according to the report.

No level of lead exposure is considered safe for children, according to the Centers for Disease Control. Lead can cause developmental delays, damage to the brain and nervous system, lower IQ, and hyperactivity.

The majority of the school districts that found elevated levels of lead took action, according to the report, including replacing water fountains, taking water fountains out of service, or installing water filters.

There is no federal law that requires schools to test for drinking water but multiple states require or provide funding for testing.

The CDC says that as many as 535,000 children ages 1 to 5 have levels of lead in their blood that are high enough to cause health problems.

Though the GAO report indicates that lead contamination could be a problem in hundreds of schools around the country, the crisis in Flint, Michigan is still one of the most well-known cases of lead exposure in the country. Michigan recently stopped distributing bottled water to Flint residents, saying that the water tested below lead levels that require action. But many residents are still concerned that they could be exposed to lead.

Several Democratic lawmakers separately asked the GAO to look into lead testing in schools. The Democrats, which included members of the House Energy and Commerce Committee and the Senate Committee on Health, Education, Labor and Pensions, called the findings "disturbing and unacceptable" in a statement.

In response to the report, the Environmental Protection Agency and Department of Education agreed to promote lead testing in schools and provide guidance for school districts that need to address lead levels in drinking water.

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WPLG-TV(PEMBROKE PINES, Fla.) -- A 1-year-old boy died after being left in a stifling hot car for over 8 hours, officials said.

The 17-month-old was found in a car in a Pembroke Pines, Florida, parking lot Friday, Pembroke Pines Sgt. Adam Feiner told ABC News Saturday, adding that he’d been there for 8.5 hours.

The temperature climbed to 93 degrees that day. The heat index -- or what it feels like with humidity -- was 103 degrees.

Police and fire crews responded around 5 p.m., police said, but CPR wasn't effective and the boy was later pronounced dead.

"Leaving a child inside a car is a year-long hazard, but it is especially deadly during the summer months when temperatures can climb above 100 degrees within minutes," the Pembroke Pines police said in a statement. "Always double check your vehicle after you park for loved ones or pets.

"Our prayers go out to the deceased and their family during this difficult time," the police department added.

The boy's parents had not been charged as of Saturday morning, Feiner said.

The family’s name has not been released and authorities did not immediately respond Monday to ABC News’ request for comment.

Children's bodies heat up much faster than adults and children's internal organs begin to shut down after their core body temperature reaches 104 degrees, according to a report from the National Safety Council.

On an 86-degree day, for example, it would take only about 10 minutes for the inside of a car to reach a dangerous 105 degrees, the report added.

This marks the 24th child to die in a hot car in the United States this year, according to the organization KidsAndCars.org, and the second child to die this way in Florida in 2018.

Florida ranks No. 2 in the country for child hot-car fatalities, the organization said, with 89 deaths since 1992. 

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iStock/Thinkstock(NEW YORK) -- While it can be hard to navigate the evolving world of insect repellent and know what chemicals are safe to be lathering on your children, it's also imperative that you remember the bug spray if your family is spending time outdoors this summer.

Everyone knows mosquito bites can be a nuisance, but what they may not realize is that insect-borne diseases from mosquito, flea and tick bites have also tripled in recent years, according to a 2018 analysis from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Dr. Whitney Bowe,  a dermatologist and the medical director of integrative dermatology, aesthetics and wellness at Advanced Dermatology, P.C., broke down everything you need to know for "Good Morning America" when shopping for or applying bug sprays.

Initially, Bowe recommends looking for one of three active ingredients in sunscreen, which she based on the most recent tests done by Consumer Reports. The ingredients to look for are DEET, oil of lemon eucalyptus, or picaridin. All three are safe when used as directed, even for pregnant women, according to Bowe.

In addition, the same way we look for an SPF number when buying sunscreen, Bowe recommends looking for a concentration number when purchasing insect repellent. For DEET, you want to look for products between 15 and 30 percent -- that’s the sweet spot that gives you the best efficacy while minimizing potential risks and side effects.

For picaridin, 20 percent is the magic number, but you want to make sure it's in spray form because the picaridin lotions and wipes often didn’t work as well. And for oil of lemon eucalyptus, they found that a spray with 30 percent concentration performed very well.

Here, Bowe breaks down everything you need to know about buying and applying bug spray, and answers some of the most commonly-asked questions about insect repellents.

Q: What’s the safest way to apply bug spray to my face?

Dr. Bowe: I recommend that you spray the bug spray into your hands first and then smooth onto your face. I do not recommend that you let young children handle bug spray on their own. Instead, follow the same spray-into-your-hands technique and then smooth onto your child’s skin, being careful to avoid skin close to the eyes or the mouth. I like to pat a small amount on my daughter’s forehead and cheeks only. Children often put their hands into their mouths or touch their eyes, so it’s best not to apply bug spray on your child’s hands because you don’t want to risk accidental ingestion or contact with the eyes.

Q: If I have a cut, wound, or irritated skin, is it safe to apply bug spray to the area?

Dr. Bowe: I do not recommend applying repellents on broken or irritated skin. Be mindful of cuts and scrapes on your children as well! When the skin is broken or irritated, the bug spray ingredients can penetrate more deeply and that’s when you run into side effects such as rashes on the skin.

Q: Should I use a combination sunscreen plus bug spray product? It seems like this would be so easy because it’s a two-in-one!

Dr. Bowe: Even though this seems like such an easy and time-efficient approach, I do not recommend using combination products in this situation. The reason is because sunscreen is typically reapplied every two hours in order to effectively protect your skin. However, bug spray most often should not be reapplied this frequently. So, you might be overexposed to the chemicals in the bug repellent if you use such a combination product. Furthermore, some studies suggest that insect repellent can actually decrease the effect of sunscreen by up to 30 percent!

Q: At what ages is it safe to use DEET and Oil of Lemon Eucalyptus on children?

Dr. Bowe: The American Academy of Pediatrics and the CDC do not recommend using DEET on children under 2 months old. Concentration is key here, particularly when using this ingredient on children. For DEET, I recommend looking for products between 15 percent and 30 percent so that you are optimizing efficacy while minimizing risks. Of course, follow the guidelines on your particular repellent. In contrast, the American Academy of Pediatrics does not recommend using Oil of Eucalyptus on children under 3 years old! That’s a very large leap from two months and is often surprising to parents, given that oil of Lemon Eucalyptus is a natural option. I recommend that my patients use a spray containing a 30 percent concentration, as this is the level that tested as most effective, according to Consumer Reports.

Q: What are the risks associated with using DEET?

Dr. Bowe: Many of my patients -– and even my family members -– are very concerned about the dangers of using DEET. According to a Consumer Reports survey, only one-third of adults believed that DEET was a safe option for adult usage, and even fewer adults believed that it was safe for use on children. These concerns are fueled by news stories about death and toxicity arising from DEET usage. However, according to Consumer Reports, it is estimated that since 1960, the incidence of seizures linked to potential DEET exposure was one per 100 million uses. Many of the reported cases of death or seizure actually involved a misuse of the products, including ingestion. When it comes to selecting bug repellents for your family and loved ones, your comfort level is key -– this is something I always tell my patients. The most important thing is to educate yourself about the facts and studies surrounding these options and to select the one that is the best fit for your personal beliefs and preferences. However, I would not recommend letting fear in the absence of facts guide your decisions when it comes to protecting your family from insect-borne illnesses.

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