MMWR News Synopsis for April 5, 2019

Nonfatal Assaults and Homicides Among Adults Aged ≥60 Years — United States, 2002–2016

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Violence against older adults is a growing problem, particularly among men. Growth in the older adult population and in rates of violence within this group indicate an urgent need for violence prevention strategies. The estimated number of nonfatal assaults more than doubled during this study period, and the number can double again by 2030, or sooner, if violence continues to increase at this pace. CDC analyzed rates of nonfatal assaults and homicides against adults ages 60 years and older during 2002–2016. Among men, the nonfatal assault rate increased 75.4 percent during this period. Among women, the rate increased 35.4 percent between 2007 and 2016. From 2010-2016, the homicide rate increased 7.1 percent for men ages 60 years and older. Men ages 60-69 had the highest rates and the greatest increases in both nonfatal assaults and homicides.

 

Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease Prevalence Among Persons Who Have Never Smoked, by Industry and Occupation — United States, 2013–2017

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Reducing the burden of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) will require reducing adverse workplace exposures to dust, vapors, fumes, chemicals, and indoor and outdoor air pollutants. Research is needed to characterize the many contributing risk factors to COPD. An estimated 2.4 million working American adults who are never smokers (106 million) currently have COPD. Of the never smokers, women (3.0%) had higher COPD prevalence when compared with men (1.5%) regardless of their socio-demographic characteristics. Overall, COPD prevalence was highest among never smokers employed in the information (3.3%) and mining industries (3.1%) and among workers in the office and administrative support occupations (3.3%). Gender differences in COPD prevalence were observed by industry and occupation. The highest COPD prevalences for males were among workers employed in the arts, entertainment, and recreation industry (2.3%); in the administrative/support and waste management/remediation services industries (2.3%); and in healthcare support occupations (2.6%). The highest COPD prevalences for females were among workers in the information industry (5.1%) and in transportation and material moving occupations (4.5%).

 

Outbreak of Cyanide Poisoning Caused by Consumption of Cassava Flour — Kasese District, Uganda, September 2017

 CDC Media Relations
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Public education on the importance of following established methods of processing cassava to degrade cyanogenic glycosides, making it safe to eat, is key to curbing cassava food poisoning outbreaks. Cassava, the primary food source of over 600 million tropical residents, contains cyanogenic glycosides that can cause cyanide poisoning if the cassava is not properly processed. In sub-Saharan Africa, particularly Uganda, Tanzania, and the Democratic Republic of the Congo, thousands of people might experience cyanide poisoning from eating cassava. The full extent of the problem is unknown because acute cyanide poisoning outbreaks associated with cassava are rarely investigated.

 

Tracking Progress Toward Polio Eradication — Worldwide, 2017–2018

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Poliovirus outbreaks are primarily detected by surveillance for acute flaccid paralysis (AFP) among children under 15 years old and testing stool specimens for wild poliovirus (WPV) and vaccine-derived polioviruses (VDPVs). A new CDC report finds that the majority of the high-priority countries evaluated for polio surveillance have met their national AFP surveillance targets, but there was substantial subnational variation in surveillance performance. The report presents 2017-2018 poliovirus surveillance data, with focus on 31 countries in endemic and polio-free World Health Organization regions identified as surveillance-high-priority countries due to “high risk of poliovirus transmission and limited capacity to adequately address those risks.” These surveillance systems need continued strengthening through monitoring, supervision, and improvements in specimen collection and transport to provide sufficient evidence for interruption of poliovirus circulation.

 

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Page last reviewed: March 1, 2018