HEALTH

ACE opens new rooms on Web site to promote germ fighting

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON The Alliance for Consumer Education on Wednesday launched four new rooms on its interactive Web site, www.StopGerms.org, and unveiled a 3-dimensional version of StopGerms.org in Second Life, a virtual online community. ACE’s StopGerms.org, is a website aimed at educating consumers on ways they can help keep their families healthy through proper hygiene practices within the home. Included in the new expansion to the popular interactive site are four new rooms: The Garage, Foyer, Study and Living Room.

Consumers can click on objects in each room such as doorknobs, carpets, toothbrushes, or counters to see which germs are hiding or lurking on each item. A second click of the mouse lets consumers know more about each of the germs and educates them on steps they can take to help protect their families from germs and the diseases they cause.

“ACE is helping parents and families understand the threat of exposure to those germs that can cause colds and flu,” stated Joseph Healy, ACE president.

ACE is a nonprofit foundation dedicated to advancing community health and well-being.

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Walgreens gives customers direction on cough-cold OTC dosing for children

BY Jenna Duncan

DEERFIELD, Ill. Walgreens has said that it will advise its customers on the proper, safe use of over-the-counter cough and cold remedies by adding in-store signage to shelves and making its pharmacists available for consultations.

After the announcement from the CHPA Tuesday that cough-cold remedies should not be administered to children under age 4, many cough-cold remedy makers are revising their product labels to reflect the new dosing recommendations before the upcoming cold season. Walgreens has made a commitment to make sure the most current labeled cough and cold remedies will be available during the label-upgrading swap, and newly labeled products will be on shelves as soon as they are available.

The FDA has issued a statement that parents should take precautions when administering cough-cold medicines to children, including, checking active ingredients on the Drug Facts product labeling, avoiding given children two products with the same active ingredients at the same time, following directions, using the appropriate measuring instruments, selecting cough-cold medicines with child-proof caps, recognizing that cough-old remedies do not shorten the length of illness but only treat symptoms, not using cough-cold products for sedation and calling a doctor or pharmacist if any adverse reactions occur after administering.

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More parents confused about cough-cold treatments for kids, survey suggests

BY Michael Johnsen

SOUTHBOROUGH, Mass. News coming out of the recent Food and Drug Administration public meeting on pediatric cough-cold medicines sold over-the-counter, as well as the recent announcement from Consumer Healthcare Products Association that manufacturers would voluntarily cease recommending use of their cough-cold products in children under the age of four, could compound pre-existing confusion among parents.

According to a survey of 606 parents (conducted by Survey.com) released by Kaz Monday, the majority of parents had already been considering not giving their children cough-cold medicine when they become sick with a cold. According to the survey, conducted six months after the FDA announced a ban of the sale of cough-cold products to children under the age of two, 70 percent of parents with children under the age of four reported they give their children cold medicine when they were sick, as do 74 percent of parents with kids under six and 80 percent of parents with children between the ages of seven and 12 old.

When asked in June if they plan to change the way they treat their children’s colds this coming season due to the January FDA warnings, more than half (64 percent) of parents who currently give their children cold medicine either plan to stop (34 percent) or are considering it (30 percent).

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