Monthly Archives: July 2014

Clients of BMC’s violence interventional advocacy program find experience supportive

Published on July 22, 2014

Researchers from Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM) and Boston Medical Center (BMC) have found that participants who received care through BMC’s Violence Intervention Advocacy Program (VIAP)—an interventional program targeting the physical, mental, emotional and social needs of violently injured youths—were less likely to retaliate for their injuries and experienced life changing behaviors through connections to caring, steady, supportive adults who helped them feel trust and hope. These findings are reported in the journal Academic Emergency Medicine

Violence, particularly among persons younger than 24 years of age, is on the rise in the U.S. and is a public health problem. In 2011, emergency departments treated 707,212 patients aged 12-24 for violent injuries, compared to 668,133 in 2007. Most urban violence occurs in poor communities and young, African-American males are disproportionately affected. Up to 40 percent of injured African American youth who are less than 24 years old and hospitalized sustain subsequent injuries. One half of which return as victims of homicide.

In-depth, semi-structured interviews were conducted with 20 VIAP clients who were mostly male, African American and younger than 30, reflecting the typical VIAP clientele. Education level ranged from having some high school or GED to having some higher education. Most reported they had not suffered a prior violent injury before enrolling in VIAP. The interview consisted of open-ended questions structured around the following areas: life pre- and post-injury, hospital experience, VIAP experience, retaliation, and general questions relating to family/friend dynamics, accomplishments in life and goals. All interviews were coded, analyzed and the findings were organized into three main domains: challenges to physical and emotional healing, client experience with VIAP and effectiveness of VIAP.

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FDA Warning: Avoid Pure Caffeine Powder

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By: Joan Salge Blake, Correspondent 7/21/14

The FDA is warning consumers to avoid powdered pure caffeine, particularly, the variety being sold in bulk bags over the Internet. These products are essentially 100 percent caffeine. One teaspoon of pure caffeine is roughly equivalent to the amount in 25 cups of coffee. The FDA is aware of at least onedeath of a teenager, thus far, who had used these products.

According to the FDA, pure caffeine is a powerful stimulant and very small amounts may cause accidental overdose. Symptoms of caffeine overdose can include rapid or dangerously erratic heartbeat, seizures and death. Vomiting, diarrhea, stupor, and disorientation are also symptoms of caffeine toxicity. These symptoms are likely to be much more severe than those resulting from drinking too much coffee, tea, or other caffeinated beverages. Unfortunately, teenagers and young adults may seek out these products. Individuals with heart conditions should clearly avoid them.

The FDA wants to know about adverse events associated with powdered pure caffeine and other highly caffeinated products. You can report any adverse reactions to the FDA:

• By phone at 240-402-2405
• By email at

Courtesy of:

New Grant Funding to Create a Centralized Location at Boston Medical Center to Help Marathon Bombing Victims

Many victims are still hurting more than a year after the bombing.

By Faiz Siddiqui | GLOBE CORRESPONDENT   JULY 08, 2014

Many victims are still hurting more than a year after the bombing.

During a golf outing a few weeks ago, Patrick Downes began chatting with a friend about what it might be like as an amputee to raise a child. Downes, who lost part of his left leg in the Boston Marathon bombings, pictured waking in the middle of the night to comfort a crying son or daughter from a wheelchair, or watching the child scurry into the street faster than a prosthetic would allow a father to run.

He found comfort in broaching the subject with a fellow bombing victim.

“We talk about these rich things, but we’re just goofing around on a golf course,” Downes said in an interview. “I want to make it very real for people, so that they can have the opportunity to get together and really heal as a group.”
If all goes according to plan, they will soon have such a place. Beginning in August, victims of the Boston Marathon bombings will be able to find mental health, behavioral, and psychological services inside a centralized location at Boston Medical Center, state and federal officials announced Tuesday.
Backed by $1.9 million in federal grants, the Massachusetts Resiliency Center will serve as a gathering place where bombing survivors can seek assistance and care, and meet in a central location, free of charge. Victims spanning more than 30 states and five countries will have the chance to receive electronic consultations aimed at finding services and providers in their communities.

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Courtesy of Boston Globe. 

With July 4th Around the Corner Here are Some Firework Safety Tips

Leave Fireworks to the Professionals

The best way to protect your family is to not use any fireworks at home. Instead, attend public fireworks displays and leave the lighting to the professionals.
If you plan to use fireworks, make sure they are legal in your area.

Be Extra Careful With Sparklers

Little arms are too short to hold sparklers, which can heat up to 1,200 degrees. How about this? Let your young children use glow sticks instead. They can be just as fun but they don’t burn at a temperature hot enough to melt glass.

Closely supervise children around fireworks at all times.

Take Necessary Precautions

Do not wear loose clothing while using fireworks.
Never light fireworks indoors or near dry grass.
Point fireworks away from homes, and keep away from brush, leaves and flammable substances

Be Prepared for an Accident or Injury

Stand several feet away from lit fireworks. If a device does not go off, do not stand over it to investigate it. Put it out with water and dispose of it.
Always have a bucket of water and/or a fire extinguisher nearby. Know how to operate the fire extinguisher properly.
If a child is injured by fireworks, immediately go to a doctor or hospital. If an eye injury occurs, don’t allow your child to touch or rub it, as this may cause even more damage.

Courtesy of