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Saturday, 3 October 2009

5yr old infant dies - latest healthy victim of Swine Flu

The H1N1 flu virus claimed the lives of two New Mexico girls this week, including a 5-year-old Rio Rancho Elementary School student and an infant from Roosevelt County, the state Department of Health announced Thursday.

Neither child had chronic medical conditions that would have put them at heightened risk of complications from the illness, health officials said.

Trinity "Trin" Olivares, of Rio Rancho, died Monday evening (sept. 28), just a day after complaining of nausea, said the girl's mother, Danelle Olivares, 31.

Trinity began feeling ill Sunday night and stayed home from school Monday as her nausea and vomiting became more severe, Olivares said. The girl's parents took her to a hospital Monday afternoon, about three hours before her death.

Doctors said the girl was severely dehydrated and put her on intravenous fluids.

"She had no fever, no cough, no runny nose, no symptoms of the flu" other than nausea, Olivares said. The girl also enjoyed good health prior to Sunday night, her mother said.

"She was a very healthy little girl. She never got sick," Olivares said.

Trinity also was keenly aware of discussion and news reports about swine flu and constantly washed her hands and even urged her mother to buy hand sanitizer, Olivares said.

Trinity recently started school at Rio Rancho Elementary after attending Shining Stars Preschool. Her father, Michael Olivares, supervises mail delivery at Rio Rancho Public Schools.

Funeral services were be held Friday, Oct. 2, St. Thomas Aquinas Parish in Rio Rancho.

The Rio Rancho Public Schools district notified parents by a telephone notification system Thursday evening.

Kim Vesely, district spokeswoman, said the district also planned to send a letter to parents today notifying them about Trinity's death.

Vesely said the New Mexico Department of Health informed the district that the child died of H1N1 flu, also known as swine flu, after the department ran a preliminary test.

Chris Minnick, spokesman for the Department of Health, said the Roosevelt County infant died this week, but he did not know what day.

The two deaths bring to seven the number of New Mexicans who have died of swine flu, and 85 have been hospitalized as of Thursday.

A 21-year-old Los Alamos County woman who had no chronic medical conditions is among those who have died. Others include a Sierra County woman, 45; a Bernalillo County woman, 52; a Bernalillo County man, 58; and a McKinley County woman, 48. All four had chronic medical conditions, health officials said.

Dr. Alfredo Vigil, the state's health secretary, called the girl's death tragic and said it highlights the dangers of all types of influenza.

"Even during the normal flu season, people unfortunately develop deadly complications," Vigil said. The death of children from flu is not unusual "given the number of cases," he said.

"It's very hard when it has to do with the death of a child," he said. "When it's a child, it's incredibly tragic."

Vigil said the first doses of swine flu vaccine are expected to arrive soon in New Mexico. About a third of the state's supply of the vaccine is expected to arrive in October; the remainder is expected within the next three months, he said.

"We're expecting vaccine soon, and hopefully in the next week or two, so we can get to work on this," Vigil said. "We haven't been notified about the day of delivery."

In a letter to parents dated Thursday, Rio Rancho Elementary Principal Barbara Bruce described Trinity as "a wonderful, bright child from a wonderful young family. We are heartbroken at their loss and express our condolences to the family."

Reports of flu in public schools have surfaced in the metro area. Almost 100 children were kept home from Moriarty Elementary School last Friday after a warning letter was sent to parents when a few students had a flulike illness. Only about 20 of the students who stayed home reported symptoms.

Also last week, Albuquerque schools saw clusters of flulike illnesses appearing earlier in the season than usual. Sandia High School reported that about 12 percent of its students were absent. The school reported fewer absences this week, a district official said.

"While the death of this child is a tragedy for our schools and community, deaths from the flu are not unexpected in this year or in any year," Bruce said in her letter to parents. "In an average year, 36,000 people worldwide die from complications related to flu.

"Most, but not all, of the people who succumb to this disease have underlying health issues that contribute to its severity. In this respect, the H1N1 flu behaves very much like the regular flu."

Olivier Uyttebrouck

How to get a Google Wave invite.

The web is buzzing with excitement and anticipation. In less than 24 hours, Google Wave will launch to 100,000 early adopters. The real-time communication platform has been making headlines ever since it was announced back in May as a result of its potentially game-changing features.

There Are Four Ways to Get an Invite

Google clarified things earlier today with an update to their blog. They specifically highlighted the four key ways you can secure an invite. Here are the methods and what you need to know:

1. You signed up early on for a Google Wave account. Google put up a request form for Wave invites not long after Wave was announced. Most of the invites arriving tomorrow will go to people on that list. Your chances improve if you signed up early on and wrote a message to the Wave team.

2. You have an account on the Developer Preview of Wave. The Sandbox version of Google Wave has been active for a select group of developers for several months now, allowing them to test Wave, report bugs, and build Wave extensions. They will all get accounts.

3. Some paying users of Google Apps will get accounts. It’s likely several companies asked Google for invites when the real-time tool launched. They will get accounts. Some schools that use Google Apps will also get early access.

4. You are invited by someone currently using Wave. This is the most intriguing revelation made today by the search giant. Here’s how Google explained it:

“We’ll ask some of these early users to nominate people they know also to receive early invitations — Google Wave is a lot more useful if your friends, family and colleagues have it too. This, of course, will just be the beginning. If all goes well we will soon be inviting many more to try out Google Wave.”

Do you know what this reminds us of? Gmail. Do you remember when it first came out and there were a select number of invites users could send out? I remember that people were willing to pay cold, hard cash for one of those invites. You might see the same type of frenzy over Wave.

Regardless, these are currently the only four ways to get an account on Wave. So if you don’t get an invite tomorrow, you still have hope. You’ll probably have to beg someone for an invite, though.

Author Ben Par for mashable.com

Swine Flu worries over global vaccine shortage ( Video)

Many Countries around the globe are starting to panic as it becomes clear some countires will fair better with h1n1 vaccine supplies than others. Watch the video below for the low down.

Friday, 2 October 2009

Report - Warning over lack of hospital beds during Swine Flu epidemic.

Nevada is one of the 15 states that could run out of available hospital beds if swine flu strikes 35 percent of the population in the United States, according to a report released Thursday.

The report, "H1N1 Challenges Ahead," was published by the Washington, D.C.-based Trust for America's Health and predicts Nevada also could lose $9 billion if the H1N1 virus causes a severe pandemic.

But Gov. Jim Gibbons' spokesman said the report is based on some unlikely scenarios, and Nevadans should be prepared but not panicky about the impending flu season.

The report estimates Nevada's hospital bed occupancy could be at 137 percent at the peak of a flu outbreak.

"Health departments and communities around the country are racing against the clock as the pandemic unfolds," said Jeff Levi, executive director of Trust for America's Health. "The country's much more prepared than we were a few short years ago for a pandemic, but there are some long-term underlying problems which complicate response efforts, like surge capacity and the need to modernize core public health issues like communications and surveillance capabilities."

The report said only 36.1 percent of adults were vaccinated last year against the seasonal flu, while almost 70 percent of seniors older than 65 are vaccinated annually for the seasonal flu. But only 24 percent of younger adults ages 18 to 49 get vaccinated, and H1N1 has been more severe, and sometimes lethal, in younger adults and children than in seniors.

If 35 percent of the country's population becomes sick from the flu, the report states that the number of those ill could range from a high of 12.9 million in California to a low of 186,434 in Wyoming. In Nevada, the estimated number of residents falling ill is 720,000 in the case of a severe pandemic.

Martha Framsted, spokeswoman for the Nevada Division of Health and Human Services, said the attack rate of H1N1 -- how virulent the virus will be -- is not known at this point.

"We're monitoring the hospital bed situation closely," she said. "We haven't seen anything out of the norm, and it's difficult at this point to ascertain if that scenario would play out. We don't have a crystal ball."

Gibbons' spokesman Dan Burns questioned the likelihood of 35 percent of the population in the U.S. contracting the flu at the same time and causing a hospital bed shortage for the state.

"There is a flu season," he said. "Not all people get the flu at once, and not all people who get the seasonal flu or H1N1 will have to be hospitalized."

The strain of H1N1 seen in the U.S. so far has been a mild form of the flu, and Burns said that although the illness still needs to be taken seriously, the state has an emergency plan in place should a pandemic occur and that H1N1 vaccine is being delivered "right now" to the state.

"Although the report you've seen and those numbers and figures are extremely daunting, what's most important is to ensure that businesses, schools and everyone is informed and prepared," he said.

The public can get detailed information and answers to their questions from Web sites at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Nevada Division of Health and Human Services and their local county health departments, Burns said.

"What this report tells us is that we need to be prepared," he said. "If you are prepared, you avoid panic."


Thursday, 1 October 2009

At Least 102 dead from Swine Flu in Florida

With at least 102 confirmed swine flu related deaths in Florida, county health departments are making plans to distribute a vaccine and educate the public.

The first doses of a swine flu vaccine could start arriving at local health departments as early as next week, officials say.

They encourage people to get them.

Valerie Post, 24, who died Monday after the health department count was taken, died Monday night.

"A mom who had just delivered just died, and she seemed to be healthy other than pregnancy, so it's a serious disease and one we should really pay attention to," said Maggie Hall, spokeswoman for the Pinellas County Health Department.

Health officials say Post had no underlying health conditions but pregnant women are in the high-risk group for swine flu.

In the last two weeks, swine flu claimed the life of two other people in the Bay Area, both in good health – a 39-year old Pinellas County man and a 14-year-old from Highlands County.

Health Department officials say they are taking every step they can to prevent the spread of the disease, including outreach and education programs.

"We have a bunch of health educators that can go out to your business to help you prepare for swine flu season," Hall said.

The first batch of vaccine has been shipped from France to Pennsylvania and will now be distributed throughout the United States.

Health experts urge pregnant women, children 6 months to 4 years and healthcare workers to get the vaccine.

But pregnant women may have to wait.

"Unfortunately with the first doses coming being FluMist, it's not recommended for pregnant women," Hall said. They'll have to wait for vaccine shots.

Officials say money will not be an obstacle if people choose public vaccination sites.

The federal government purchased 259 million doses of the vaccine, and is distributing it to 90,000 sites nationwide, Health and Human Services secretary Kathleen Sebelius said.

The shots will be administered free through public health departments, which will make them available at locations including schools.

Other locations may charge a fee to cover labor and other overhead costs, though some insurance plans will pay these fees.

Health officials say they expect there will be enough of the vaccine for everyone.

The Pasco County Health Department is working with the schools to reach out to the children, said department spokeswoman Deanna Krautner. The department even plans on offering extended office hours to distribute the vaccines.

In Citrus County, officials say they have produced an educational DVD with a presentation about swine flu, which will be available to the community.

They are prepared to distribute the vaccine once it arrives.

Citrus County Health Department spokesperson Judith Tear said they already have 28 groups, including pediatricians and obstetricians, signed up to distribute the vaccine once it arrives.

"Getting vaccinated is not mandatory, this is strictly voluntary," said Tear. "Your health is an individual choice."


Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Earthquake triggers tsunami warning - red alert

A magnitude-8.0 earthquake roiled a swath of the South Pacific today, triggering tsunami warnings for 20 island nations and prompting Samoans to flee coastal villages for higher ground.

A 5-foot (1.5-meter) tsunami was reported at Pago Pago, American Samoa, the U.S. Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said. Homes in some villages on the southern coast of the Samoan island of Upolu were washed away, Radio New Zealand reported. Some people on that coast may have been swept to sea, Television New Zealand reported, citing its Apia-based film crew.

The quake struck shortly before 7 a.m. local time about 122 miles (196 kilometers) southwest of Apia, the capital of the independent island of Samoa, at a depth of about 22 miles, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center said warnings for tsunami activity were posted for Fiji, New Zealand, Tonga, the Cook Islands and 16 other nations.

“Our house has already been taken by the tsunami,” Theresa Falele Dussey told Radio New Zealand from hills above Apia, where people took shelter. “Some of the houses and cars next to our village have already been taken by tsunami as well.”

New Zealand civil defense officials warned local authorities in coastal areas to prepare for a tsunami. A wave may be about 1 meter high if it reaches here, Civil Defense Minister John Carter said on a television broadcast.

‘Crying and Screaming’

The tsunami was projected to reach Tonga and Fiji about 9 a.m. local time, according to the Pacific warning center. It is expected to reach the eastern coast of New Zealand’s North Island about 9:45 a.m. local time.

Residents of Samoa, shocked by the strength of the jolt, heeded warnings of local police and moved inland, Radio New Zealand’s Samoa correspondent, Tipi Autagavaia, said on a broadcast.

“My kids were preparing to go to school and were all crying and screaming,” he said in the broadcast. “It was a big, big shock to most people, because it is the first time they have experienced such a very strong earthquake.”

The magnitude of the quake was revised higher from an initial reading of 7.9, the USGS said. The quake was followed by two 5.6 temblors, one in the Samoa Islands region and one near the Cook Islands, the USGS said.

H1N1 Flu Jab Confussion - BOTH shots will be needed.

Justin Johnson was among the first of Aurora Health Care Center's employees to roll up his sleeve for a seasonal flu shot Monday.

The health information clerk took the opportunity at lunch time to be immunized along with his co-workers at the first seasonal flu clinic for Aurora employees. Johnson has limited contact with patients but considers it his responsibility to get a flu shot each year. He swears by them.

"They've always worked," he said.

One down and one to go. In addition to the seasonal flu shot Johnson said he plans to get the H1N1 flu shot when it becomes available statewide in mid to late October.

Health care providers would like it if all area residents who need flu shots would be a careful as Johnson. And as informed.

The problem is that area residents remain confused about which shots they need, when they can get them and how the shots protect them.

Mary Dittmar, Aurora's Shoo the Flu coordinator, stressed that this year people can become ill from two different types of flu – seasonal and H1N1 – hence the need for both vaccinations.

H1N1 gets a lot of attention, but it's important to note that seasonal flu can affect up to 20 percent of the population and is responsible for 36,000 deaths nationwide each year, according to information provided by Aurora.

Specific numbers of flu cases are not available. Some recent changes regarding the monitoring and reporting of flu cases have been put into place by the Wisconsin Department of Health.

"Individual cases are not reported, hospitalizations and deaths are," said Doug Gieryn, director of the Winnebago County health department.

Flu activity actually declined last week in northeastern Wisconsin, Gieryn said. In the past month, there were 322 probable and confirmed H1N1 cases statewide, including six hospitalizations and no deaths.

Following the advice of the Centers for Disease Control, local health care providers are stressing that people receive the seasonal flu vaccine as early as possible. A myth floating around that early immunizations will wear off and make people vulnerable to illness before the flu season ends might be causing people to delay getting their shots, said Karla Repta, director of clinic patient care services for Affinity Health System.
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Early immunizations will cover them for the entire season, Repta said.

People seeking seasonal flu shots from Affinity can obtain them in three ways: if they already have a scheduled appointment with their health care provider they can request an immunization at the same time; they can call their doctor and make an appointment specifically for the shot; or they can attend mass immunization clinics scheduled in the area.

The first mass clinic by Affinity will be held Oct. 10. They will be held every four weeks throughout December.

The first H1N1 flu clinic could be held locally as early as next week, Gieryn said. But this one is for health care providers and emergency personnel. About 3,500 doses of the vaccine will be provided countywide for this first group.

The next group includes school children, pregnant women and people with chronic health conditions. Vaccines for that group should be available by mid to late October and county and city health departments will work with local schools to hold clinics in the schools. The third batch of vaccines for the general public will be distributed at a later date. It is less crucial for the elderly to receive the H1N1 vaccine because those over 60 yeas of age already carry immunity to that strain of flu, Dittmar said.

However, the state will receive sufficient doses for all those that want them. The plan is to target the priority groups first, Gieryn said.

Health care professionals continue to stress the need for frequent hand washing, covering coughs and staying home from work and school when you are sick, Repta said.
Groups, local governments plan seasonal flu clinics

Clinics around the area are planning vaccination clinics to protect against the seasonal flu. Here is a roundup of upcoming clinics:
Oshkosh Health Division

Cost: Free. Donations accepted.

Clinics: Tuesday by appointment only at Oshkosh City Hall, 215 Church Ave., room 206. Vaccines given include FluMist and an injectible seasonal flu vaccine, as well as childhood vaccines, Td and Tdap boosters, and the HPV vaccine.
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For more: Call (920) 236-5030 to make an appointment.
Aurora Visiting Nurse Association

Cost: $30 for flu shots; $45 for pneumonia vaccinations. Medicare Part B and Medicaid cover the costs of both.

Clinics: Oct. 6 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Festival Foods, 2415 Westowne Ave., Oshkosh, and Piggly Wiggly, 142 Alder Ave., Omro; Oct. 6 from 4 to 7 p.m. at Aurora Health Center, 414 Doctors Court; Oct. 7 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at St. Andrews Evangelical Lutheran Church, 1100 E. Murdock Ave.; Oct. 8 from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Piggly Wiggly, 525 E. Murdock Ave.; and Oct. 9 from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. at Bella Vista, 631 Hazel St.

For more: See www.aurora.org/flu or call (800) 548-7580.
Valley VNA Senior Services

Cost: $30 for influenza vaccine; $44 for pneumonia vaccine. Medicare Part B and most Medicare Advantage Plans will cover the cost of both vaccines. Participants are asked to bring all health insurance cards with them to the clinic.

Area clinics: Thursdays in October from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. at Wittman Regional Airport, 535 W. 20th Ave.; and Mondays (Sept. 28 to Oct. 26) from 9 a.m. to noon and Tuesdays (Sept. 29 to Oct. 27) from 3 to 6 p.m., both at Valley VNA Senior Services, 1535 Lyon Drive, Neenah.

For more: Visit www.valleyvna.org.
Green Lake County

Cost: $30 for the seasonal flu shot, $53 for the pneumonia vaccine, unless you have Medicare Part B or belong to a Medicare HMO and present your card at the time of your appointment.

Clinics: Wednesday from 3 to 4:30 p.m. at Green Lake County Human Services; Oct. 5 from 2:30 to 3:30 p.m. at the Princeton American Legion; and Oct. 6 from 2 to 4 p.m. at Grace Lutheran Church in Berlin. Due to limited inventory of flu vaccine, the vaccination programs are scheduled so highest priority is given to adults who are most likely to experience complications from influenza. As future shipments of vaccine are delivered, more clinics will be scheduled, including free vaccine clinics for eligible children.


Hackers release a new attack on Windows

HACKERS HAVE LOOSED a new attack code that exploits a critical flaw in Windows Vista and Windows 2008 Server.

The Vole has known about this hole in its operating systems since 7th September, but now it seems that there is at least one program that exploits it.

The new attack was penned by Harmony Security Senior Researcher Stephen Fewer and it lets the attacker run unauthorized software on the victim's computer, in theory making the vulnerability a much more serious problem.

The exploit code was added to the open sauce Metasploit penetration testing kit yesterday.

Another outfit called Immunity developed its own attack code for the bug, but that code is available only to the company's paying subscribers.

Metasploit developer HD Moore said the exploit works on Windows Vista Service Pack 1 and 2 as well as Windows 2008 SP1 server.

However Immunity Senior Researcher Kostya Kortchinsky told PC World the attack was not completely reliable. He could only get the Metasploit attack to work on Vista when it was running within a VMware virtual machine session. Outside VMware it just caused Windows systems to crash.

The underlying flaw lies in the server message block version 2 (SMB 2) system, introduced in Vista. The flaw apparently has been patched in Windows 7.

On 18 September Microsoft released a Fix-It tool that disables SMB 2, and the company said then that it was working on a fix for its software.

Rage killed Derrion Albert

Rage killed Derrion Albert. It is the same rage that once led angry mobs of whites to lynch innocent blacks as law-abiding citizens watched.

The same rage once erupted into riots that drove young black men to burn and loot white-owned businesses, as residents hid in their locked homes.

Last Thursday, the rage turned a group of young black men into a mob that fatally attacked Derrion with wooden boards and railroad ties.

It happened on a major thoroughfare in the middle of the afternoon.

Derrion, an honor student, was an innocent bystander of a street fight between a group of young men who come from the CHA's Altgeld Gardens and those who live in the neighborhood near the school known as the "Ville."

"These students can't walk down the street," said Cortez Spearman, who claimed to be a graduate of Fenger.

"If they aren't from around here, they are going to get jumped on," he said.

"The police are out here, but they are not doing their job," he said.

Derrion was viciously beaten near the Agape Community Center, a facility that bears the name for Christian love, located a short distance from the school.

Early Monday afternoon, three teenagers were ordered held without bail for the fatal beating death.

Silvonus Shannon, 19, Eric Carson, 16, and Eugene Riley, 18, are accused of kicking and punching Derrion to death. And late Monday, a fourth person, Eugene Bailey, 17, was charged in connection with the beating.

Carson, a Fenger junior, spent nine months at the Cook County Juvenile Detention Center. Upon his release, he enrolled at Fenger, and is currently serving a two-year probation for a July 2008 robbery.

Outside of Fenger on Monday, the rage erupted into clashes between young females who took out their anger on camera crews and on each other.

Though a hulking fortress, the high school seemed no match for the scores of angry people who had gathered for a prayer vigil.

As CPS officials, politicians, local ministers, and Chicago Police officers were ushered into the school, a cadre of the slain teen's relatives pleaded to get in.

Derrion's brother, who identified himself only as "Dewante," stood on the steps with tears streaming down his face.

Derrion's grandmother, Jessie Taylor, said she is "taking it one day at a time."

"You never think this is going to happen to you," she said. "My son called me and told me to stop what I was doing -- Derrion is dead."

Behind her, angry protesters tried to storm the door each time it was opened for a new arrival.

They were angry at school officials, at the police, and at the news media whose lens captured their hostility.

"This isn't the first time a child has gotten killed around here, but this is the first time all of these people have come out," said Marquita McAlister, who said she was a parent of a Fenger student.

"My daughter was cut from one end of her face to the other and no one did anything," she said.

McAlister claimed that the mother of the young woman who cut her daughter was a security guard at the school.

"They left my daughter outside to bleed to death," she said.

"It was kids with cell phones who called an ambulance. This violence hasn't just started," she said.

Ronika Black, who lives in Roseland, was outraged over how the school was being run.

"My children have to go to this school. I don't have car fare to send them anywhere else," Black said.

"They opened this school up and said everything has changed. Nothing has changed," she said.

Despite the presence of several youth centers and a number of churches, the rage that claimed Derrion's life is like a fire that keeps flaring up.

"We have to find out why these kids are so angry," said Diane Latiker, founder of "Kids Off The Block," a nationally recognized youth outreach organization in Roseland.

"We are not doing enough. That goes from parents to community leaders to churches to schools,'' she said.

We can't stop the senseless killing until we can reach the young people who are growing up without their own hopes and dreams.

They are enraged.

They are dream killers.


Polanski's capture was always planned

US prosecutors have disputed claims Roman Polanski's arrest came out of the blue, saying he had been on a Interpol "wanted list" for years.

Mr Polanski is being held in Switzerland on a US arrest warrant over his conviction, 30 years ago, for unlawful sex with a 13-year-old girl.

His agent, Jeff Berg, said the arrest made "no sense" as he had travelled extensively across Europe.

But US authorities inferred Mr Polanski has been adept at evading arrest.

"The idea that we have known where he is and we could have gotten him anytime, that just isn't the case," said Chief Inspector of the US Marshals Service Thomas Hession.

'Careful man'

He said the 76-year-old Polish director had been on "red notice" by Interpol, alerting other countries that the US was seeking extradition.

Emmanuelle Seigner
Polanski's wife Emmanuelle Seigner has been allowed to visit him in jail

But he added that proper legal channels had to be followed which meant they had to know Mr Polanski's specific whereabouts before a country could be asked to act.

Previously, Los Angeles deputy district attorney Richard Doyle had stated in court testimony: "He knows where he can go. He knows where he can't go. He's been a careful man all these years."

But Mr Berg said: "How hard would it be to find someone shooting a major film in a European country?"

"He travels with transparency across Europe. It makes no sense."

Mr Polanski's lawyers are likely to seek bail but the precedent in Swiss law shows that the subjects of extradition requests are normally kept in detention.

He is being held in Zurich, where he has been allowed to meet with his wife, French actress Emmanuelle Seigner, as well as lawyers.

Post-production work on Mr Polanski's latest film The Ghost, starring Pierce Brosnan and Ewan McGregor, has been halted.

Mr Berg said that while editing had been completed, there was still work to do on the music score and other post-production details.

Staying away

Meanwhile, a petition circulating in France, where the director has made his home, has drawn support from film-makers including Pedro Almodovar, Stephen Frears and The Pianist writer Ronald Harewood.

Mr Polanski pleaded guilty to unlawful sex with an underage girl following a plea bargain. He had originally been charged with six offences including rape and sodomy.

But he fled the US before he could be sentenced and has not returned to the country since.

In the past year, his legal team has had a request turned down to have a hearing on the rape charge heard outside the US.

Lawyers are trying to get the case dismissed on the grounds that the original trial was the subject of "judicial and prosecutorial misconduct".

The victim at the centre of the case, Samantha Geimer, has previously asked for the charges to be dropped. She has already sued Mr Polanski and reached an undisclosed settlement.


Monday, 28 September 2009

Swine Flu 101 - The Comprehensive Guide.

People with swine flu who are cared for at home should:

  • check with their health care provider about any special care they might need if they are pregnant or have a health condition such as diabetes, heart disease, asthma, or emphysema
  • check with their health care provider about whether they should take antiviral medications
  • stay home for 7 days after your symptoms begin or until you have been symptom-free for 24 hours, whichever is longer
  • get plenty of rest
  • drink clear fluids (such as water, broth, sports drinks, electrolyte beverages for infants) to keep from being dehydrated
  • cover coughs and sneezes. Clean hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub often and especially after using tissues and after coughing or sneezing into hands.
  • avoid close contact with others – do not go to work or school while ill
  • be watchful for emergency warning signs (see below) that might indicate you need to seek medical attention

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Medications to Help Lessen Symptoms of the Flu

Check with your healthcare provider or pharmacist for correct, safe use of medications

Antiviral medications can sometimes help lessen influenza symptoms, but require a prescription. Most people do not need these antiviral drugs to fully recover from the flu. However, persons at higher risk for severe flu complications, or those with severe flu illness who require hospitalization, might benefit from antiviral medications. Antiviral medications are available for persons 1 year of age and older. Ask your healthcare provider whether you need antiviral medication.

Influenza infections can lead to or occur with bacterial infections. Therefore, some people will also need to take antibiotics. More severe or prolonged illness or illness that seems to get better, but then gets worse again may be an indication that a person has a bacterial infection. Check with your healthcare provider if you have concerns.

Warning! Do not give aspirin (acetylsalicylic acid) to children or teenagers who have the flu; this can cause a rare but serious illness called Reye’s syndrome. For more information about Reye’s syndrome, visit the National Institute of Health website.

  • Check ingredient labels on over-the-counter cold and flu medications to see if they contain aspirin.

  • Teenagers with the flu can take medicines without aspirin, such as acetaminophen (Tylenol®) and ibuprofen (Advil®, Motrin®, Nuprin®), to relieve symptoms.
  • Children younger than 4 years of age should not be given over-the-counter cold medications without first speaking with a healthcare provider.
  • The safest care for flu symptoms in children younger than 2 years of age is using a cool-mist humidifier and a suction bulb to help clear away mucus.
  • Fevers and aches can be treated with acetaminophen (Tylenol®) or ibuprofen (Advil®, Motrin®, Nuprin®) or nonsteroidal anti-inflammatory drugs (NSAIDS). Examples of these kinds of medications include:
Generic Name Brand Name(s)



Advil®, Motrin®, Nuprin®



  • Over-the-counter cold and flu medications used according to the package instructions may help lessen some symptoms such as cough and congestion. Importantly, these medications will not lessen how infectious a person is.
  • Check the ingredients on the package label to see if the medication already contains acetaminophen or ibuprofen before taking additional doses of these medications—don’t double dose! Patients with kidney disease or stomach problems should check with their health care provider before taking any NSAIDS.
Check with your health care provider or pharmacist if you are taking other over-the-counter or prescription medications not related to the flu.For more information on products for treating flu symptoms, see the FDA website.
When to Seek Emergency Medical Care

Get medical care right away if the sick person at home:

  • has difficulty breathing or chest pain
  • has purple or blue discoloration of the lips
  • is vomiting and unable to keep liquids down
  • has signs of dehydration such as dizziness when standing, absence of urination, or in infants, a lack of tears when they cry
  • has seizures (for example, uncontrolled convulsions)
  • is less responsive than normal or becomes confused

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Steps to Lessen the Spread of Flu in the Home

When providing care to a household member who is sick with influenza, the most important ways to protect yourself and others who are not sick are to:

  • Photo of child washing handskeep the sick person away from other people as much as possible (see “placement of the sick person”)
  • remind the sick person to cover their coughs, and clean their hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub often, especially after coughing and/or sneezing.
  • have everyone in the household clean their hands often, using soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub

  • ask your healthcare provider if household contacts of the sick person—particularly those contacts who may have chronic health conditions—should take antiviral medications such as oseltamivir (Tamiflu®) or zanamivir (Relenza®) to prevent the flu.

Placement of the sick person

  • Keep the sick person in a room separate from the common areas of the house. (For example, a spare bedroom with its own bathroom, if that’s possible.) Keep the sickroom door closed.
  • Unless necessary for medical care, persons with the flu should not leave the home when they have a fever or during the time that they are most likely to spread their infection to others (at the current time, CDC believes that this virus has the same properties in terms of spread as seasonal flu viruses. With seasonal flu, studies have shown that people may be contagious from one day before they develop symptoms to up to 7 days after they get sick. Children, especially younger children, might potentially be contagious for longer periods).
  • If persons with the flu need to leave the home (for example, for medical care), they should cover their nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing and wear a loose-fitting (surgical) mask if available.
  • Have the sick person wear a surgical mask if they need to be in a common area of the house near other persons.
  • If possible, sick persons should use a separate bathroom. This bathroom should be cleaned daily with household disinfectant (see below).

Protect other persons in the home

  • The sick person should not have visitors other than caregivers. A phone call is safer than a visit.
  • If possible, have only one adult in the home take care of the sick person.
  • Avoid having pregnant women care for the sick person. (Pregnant women are at increased risk of influenza-related complications and immunity can be suppressed during pregnancy).

  • All persons in the household should clean their hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand rub frequently, including after every contact with the sick person or the person’s room or bathroom.
  • Use paper towels for drying hands after hand washing or dedicate cloth towels to each person in the household. For example, have different colored towels for each person.
  • If possible, consideration should be given to maintaining good ventilation in shared household areas (e.g., keeping windows open in restrooms, kitchen, bathroom, etc.).
  • Antivirals can be used to prevent the flu, so check with your healthcare provider to see if some persons in the home should use antiviral medications.

If you are the caregiver

  • Avoid being face-to-face with the sick person.
  • When holding small children who are sick, place their chin on your shoulder so that they will not cough in your face.
  • Clean your hands with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand rub after you touch the sick person or handle used tissues, or laundry.
  • Talk to your health care provider about taking antiviral medication to prevent the caregiver from getting the flu.
  • Monitor yourself and household members for flu symptoms and contact a telephone hotline or health care provider if symptoms occur.

Using Facemasks or Respirators

  • Photo of person wearing facemaskAvoid close contact (less than about 6 feet away) with the sick person as much as possible.
  • If you must have close contact with the sick person (for example, hold a sick infant), spend the least amount of time possible in close contact and try to wear a facemask (for example, surgical mask) or N95 disposable respirator.
  • An N95 respirator that fits snugly on your face can filter out small particles that can be inhaled around the edges of a facemask, but compared with a facemask it is harder to breathe through an N95 mask for long periods of time. More information on facemasks and respirators can be found at H1N1 Flu (Swine Flu) website.
  • Facemasks and respirators may be purchased at a pharmacy, building supply or hardware store.
  • Wear an N95 respirator if you help a sick person with respiratory treatments using a nebulizer or inhaler, as directed by their doctor. Respiratory treatments should be performed in a separate room away from common areas of the house when at all possible.
  • Used facemasks and N95 respirators should be taken off and placed immediately in the regular trash so they don’t touch anything else.
  • Avoid re-using disposable facemasks and N95 respirators if possible. If a reusable fabric facemask is used, it should be laundered with normal laundry detergent and tumble-dried in a hot dryer.
  • After you take off a facemask or N95 respirator, clean your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

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Household Cleaning, Laundry, and Waste Disposal

  • Photo of person cleaning glass surfaceThrow away tissues and other disposable items used by the sick person in the trash. Wash your hands after touching used tissues and similar waste.
  • Keep surfaces (especially bedside tables, surfaces in the bathroom, and toys for children) clean by wiping them down with a household disinfectant according to directions on the product label.
  • Linens, eating utensils, and dishes belonging to those who are sick do not need to be cleaned separately, but importantly these items should not be shared without washing thoroughly first.
  • Wash linens (such as bed sheets and towels) by using household laundry soap and tumble dry on a hot setting. Avoid “hugging” laundry prior to washing it to prevent contaminating yourself. Clean your hands with soap and water or alcohol-based hand rub right after handling dirty laundry.
  • Eating utensils should be washed either in a dishwasher or by hand with water and soap.

Cashing in on swine flu - Johnson & Johnson taking an 18 % stake in Crucell NV

Health care giant Johnson & Johnson is jumping into the increasingly hot vaccine business by taking an 18 percent stake in Dutch biotechnology company Crucell NV as J&J boosts its focus on preventive medicine and infectious diseases.

Under the deal the companies announced Monday, Johnson & Johnson is spending $440 million (301.8 million euros) for new shares of Crucell in a deal focused initially on developing a universal vaccine or treatment against influenza from Crucell's genetically engineered antibody technology.

A universal flu vaccine — one that would work against all or most strains rather than having to be reformulated every flu season — has been an elusive goal some other pharmaceutical companies have abandoned. Amid the swine flu pandemic, it has suddenly become a bit of a Holy Grail.

Longer-term, Crucell and Johnson & Johnson will work on developing vaccines and possibly treatments based on antibodies against three additional disease targets, primarily in the area of infectious diseases. J&J already has numerous medicines or drugs in testing for bacterial and viral infections including tuberculosis, HIV and hepatitis C.

"This vaccine deal perfectly fits into infectious diseases ... and it makes the picture complete," J&J spokesman Frederik Wittock told The Associated Press, adding, "There are three potential compounds that are not disclosed in this deal."

All are what's called "monoclonal antibodies" — genetically engineered antibodies cloned over and over that are designed to hunt down a target in the body and either deliver a medicine to the target or alert the body's own immune system to attack it. The companies aren't saying what diseases the compounds would target.

The initial work would focus on a vaccine that could block both seasonal flu and the current swine flu pandemic strain, as well as bird flu.

"This is absolutely the right thing to do" for J&J, analyst Steve Brozak of WBB Securities said of the deal. "This is a sign of things to come."

He said Johnson & Johnson is likely to enter similar partnerships and make smaller acquisitions instead of megadeals, such as the pending acquisitions of Wyeth by Pfizer Inc. and Schering-Plough Corp. by Merck & Co.

Also Monday, Merck announced a deal to market and distribute Australian vaccine maker CSL Ltd.'s seasonal flu vaccine Afluria.

"Both J&J and Merck are making bets on the next generation of vaccines and their importance to the global health system," Brozak said.

In August, Leiden, Netherlands-based Crucell was awarded grants worth up to $69 million by the U.S. government to develop its range of monoclonal antibodies for influenza, which Crucell says have shown early promise in fighting "a wide range" of seasonal and pandemic flu viruses. The company claims the antibodies can even fight flu strains resistant to Tamiflu — the medicine currently most often used to slow their progression.

Crucell CEO Ronald Brus said his company was overwhelmed with interest after it published results in Science magazine showing the treatment's potential, but Johnson & Johnson offered a deal that preserved a fair share of future profits for Crucell.

In addition, he said Crucell didn't want to partner with any of the top five players in the vaccine market because they make large amounts of money from selling annual flu vaccines and so would have conflicting interests.

"You want to partner with the one that wants to enter the market, not the ones that want to defend their market," he said.

New Brunswick, N.J.-based Johnson & Johnson, with about $64 billion in annual sales, is the world's biggest and most broadly based health care company, with products ranging from Band-Aids and baby shampoo to contact lenses and contraceptives.

While J&J is one of the top biotech companies, with its Centocor division, it's new to the vaccine game. But this summer, it made a similar move by taking a stake, also 18 percent, in Irish biotech company Elan Corp. in a collaboration to develop both treatments for and a vaccine against Alzheimer's disease — another key target of the pharmaceutical industry. J&J will invest up to nearly $1.4 billion.

Under the deal, Crucell will retain the right to market products the companies develop jointly in Europe, while Johnson & Johnson will market them in the rest of the world.

Crucell will receive additional royalties and payments from Johnson & Johnson "worth hundreds of millions," Brus said, if the flu cure is marketed.

In New York trading, U.S. shares of Crucell fell $1.39, or 5.9 percent, to $22.31, while J&J shares rose 76 cents, or 1.3 percent, to $61.38.

Johnson & Johnson said the purchase would reduce its per-share earnings by 2 cents to 4 cents in 2009.

The agreement with Johnson & Johnson specifies that the U.S. company won't buy any more of Crucell's shares for three years without Crucell's consent.

By Toby Johnson

Sunday, 27 September 2009

Swine Flu Vaccine - watching for side effects

More than 3,000 people a day have a heart attack. If you're one of them the day after your swine flu shot, will you worry the vaccine was to blame and not the more likely culprit, all those burgers and fries?

The government is starting an unprecedented system to track possible side effects as mass flu vaccinations begin next month. The idea is to detect any rare but real problems quickly, and explain the inevitable coincidences that are sure to cause some false alarms.

"Every day, bad things happen to people. When you vaccinate a lot of people in a short period of time, some of those things are going to happen to some people by chance alone," said Dr. Daniel Salmon, a vaccine safety specialist at the Department of Health and Human Services.

Health authorities hope to vaccinate well over half the population in just a few months against swine flu, which doctors call the 2009 H1N1 strain. That would be a feat. No more than 100 million Americans usually get vaccinated against regular winter flu, and never in such a short period.

How many will race for the vaccine depends partly on confidence in its safety. The last mass inoculations against a different swine flu, in 1976, were marred by reports of a rare paralyzing condition, Guillain-Barre syndrome.

"The recurring question is, 'How do we know it's safe?'" said Dr. Gregory Poland of the Mayo Clinic.

Enter the intense new monitoring. On top of routine vaccine tracking, there are these government-sponsored projects:

— Harvard Medical School scientists are linking large insurance databases that cover up to 50 million people with vaccination registries around the country for real-time checks of whether people see a doctor in the weeks after a flu shot and why. The huge numbers make it possible to quickly compare rates of complaints among the vaccinated and unvaccinated, said the project leader, Dr. Richard Platt, Harvard's population medicine chief.

— Johns Hopkins University will direct e-mails to at least 100,000 vaccine recipients to track how they're feeling, including the smaller complaints that wouldn't prompt a doctor visit. If anything seems connected, researchers can call to follow up with detailed questions.

— The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is preparing take-home cards that tell vaccine recipients how to report any suspected side effects to the nation's Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting system.

"We don't have any reason to expect any unusual problems with this vaccine," said Dr. Neal Halsey, director of Hopkins' Institute for Vaccine Safety, who is directing the e-mail surveillance.

After all, the new H1N1 vaccine is a mere recipe change from the regular winter flu shot that's been used for decades in hundreds of millions of people without serious problems. Nor have there been any red flags in the few thousand people given test doses in studies to determine the right H1N1 dose. They've gotten the same sore arms and occasional headache or fever that's par for a winter flu shot.

But because this H1N1 flu targets the young more than the old, this may be the year that unprecedented numbers of children and pregnant women are vaccinated.

Then there's the glare of the Internet — where someone merely declaring on Facebook that he's sure the shot did harm could cause a wave of similar reports. Health authorities will have to tell quickly if there really do seem to be more cases of a particular health problem than usual.

So the CDC is racing to compile a list of what's normal: 25,000 heart attacks every week; 14,000 to 19,000 miscarriages every week; 300 severe allergic reactions called anaphylaxis every week.

Any spike would mean fast checking to see if the vaccine really seems to increase risk and by how much, so health officials could issue appropriate warnings.

Very rare side effects by definition could come to light only after large-scale inoculations begin�making this the year scientists may finally learn if flu vaccine truly is linked to Guillain-Barre, an often reversible but sometimes fatal paralysis. It's believed to strike between 1 and 2 of every 100,000 people. It often occurs right after another infection, such as food poisoning or even influenza.

But the vaccine concern stems from 1976, when 500 cases were reported among the 45 million people vaccinated against that year's swine flu. Scientists never could prove if the vaccine really caused the extra risk. The CDC maintains that if the regular winter flu vaccine is related, the risk is no more than a single case per million vaccinated.

So the question becomes, Is the risk of disease greater than that?

Mayo's Poland cites a study in Chicago that found the rate of preschoolers being hospitalized for the new H1N1 flu last spring was 2 1/2 times higher than that possible Guillain-Barre risk.

However the flu season turns out, the extra vaccine tracking promises a lasting impact.

"Part of what we hope is that it will teach us something about how to monitor the safety of all medical products quickly," said Harvard's Platt.


John Gotti's children reveal family secrets for the first time

CBSnews reports that for the first time ever, the children of mafia man John Gotti reveal secrets of what they knew about him in an exclusive interview with “48 Hours Mystery” correspondent, Troy Roberts.

They report that Victoria said she loved him but could not stand the life he lived. She stated, I loved the man, but I loathed the life, his lifestyle.Prosecutors say my father was the biggest crime boss in the nation.If you really want to know what John Gotti was like, you need to talk to my family. We lived this life.

She also said that she realized early in life that her family was different from others. She stated, “I think I realized early on that my family wasn’t like other families.Growing up, my parents tried to hide a lot of things from me,from all of us.I think you grow up scared, anxious all the time.”

Peter Gotti also chimed in and said that he used to get excited by just knowing that his father was still alive. He stated, “I used to get up as a young boy and I used to get excited when I would go and see that my father was alive. When I would hear him snore, I’d know he made it home.”


Children of the Corn 2009

One of the motivations for writer/director/producer Donald P. Borchers to do the CHILDREN OF THE CORN remake that just aired on Syfy was to create an adaptation more faithful to Stephen King’s chilling short story than the one he produced back in 1984. But the movie’s DVD (coming October 6 from Anchor Bay) reveals another reason: This film is a Statement as well.

In an on-camera interview, Borchers proclaims that he wanted this interpretation of King’s tale of a youthful rural cult to be a parable about religious extremism and the current crisis in the Middle East. This is no doubt why the new CHILDREN (following a 1963-set prologue) takes place in 1975, so that protagonist Burt (David Anders) can be a Vietnam veteran, a key source of the tension between him and wife Vicky (Kandyse McClure) during their drive through the Nebraska farmlands. (The fact that they’re interracially married, which might be expected to have also caused some problems in middle America in those days, is never addressed.) There’s lots of forced, on-the-nose dialogue regarding Burt’s Nam experiences, and when he’s later being pursued by the killer kids through the cornfields, Borchers actually throws a bunch of Viet Cong, machine-gun fire and tracer bullets into the sequence.

CHILDRENCORN09DVDREVYou can probably surmise at this point that the 2009 CHILDREN is not an improvement on the 1984 version, which certainly left room for it: That film featured two of the dumbest protagonists in horror history, wasted veteran actor R.G. Armstrong as a cliché-spouting (“It’s just the wind!”) rube and, sorry, but John Franklin’s squeaky-voiced turn as corn cult leader Isaac always struck me as more goofy than scary. The redux stays truer to King by making its central couple a dysfunctional one, but Vicky’s constant haranguing of Burt gets really old really fast, which doesn’t exactly help maintain sympathy for her. Nor does the fact that she seems incapable of seeing the young stalkers even when they’re strolling or running one at a time past their car. At least the original Burt’s dialogue howler, after he runs down a young boy who proves to have had his throat slashed, of “He was already dead when he stumbled out into the road” has been improved to “He was as good as dead when I hit him”—but CHILDREN ’09 tops it when Burt later asks the little cultists, “Why don’t you put that in your God and smoke it?”

Like the ’84 feature, this one defuses the tension and mystery of King’s story by revealing the kids’ evil right up front, though Borchers doesn’t bother to actually show us their massacre of the adults in his opening scene, just the stabbing of a pig. His Children of the Corn are cast more age-appropriately than their big-screen predecessors, but the new Isaac (Preston Bailey, who plays Cody on DEXTER) comes off as more petulant than possessed of an unholy spirit, wearing an oversized hat that, when he’s photographed from behind, makes him look a bit like SPACEBALLS’ Dark Helmet. While Borchers retains King’s ending this time around, the climactic action is intercut with a ridiculously gratuitous sex scene between two of the older teenaged Children—it’s the “time of fertilization,” you see—and when He Who Walks Behind the Rows finally makes His presence known, we’re never even given a look at Him.

The “uncut and uncensored” version contained on the DVD doesn’t add much gore to the one shown on Syfy—the extra explicitness is more evident in that bout of fornication—and it looks and sounds sharp enough in the widescreen transfer. The movie is accompanied by the 45-minute “Rough Cuts: Remaking CHILDREN OF THE CORN,” divided into four parts. “New Directions” is where Borchers announces his intentions to make this film a political allegory, and to improve on the “Hollywoodized” original (whose writer and director he gallantly fails to name, acting as if he was its sole creative force) that King disapproved of. One has to wonder what the Maine man will think of this interpretation, on which he shares a writing credit with Borchers—who admits that King declined to read his new script, a revision of the author’s initial ’84 draft.

“Cast of the Corn” sees Anders discussing details of Burt’s backstory and McClure addressing elements of the social climate of the ’70s, which sound interesting, and it’s a shame they’re not more evident in the movie itself. In “To Live and Die in Gatlin,” production designer Andrew Hussey and Alan Tuskes, on-set supervisor for Robert Kurtzman’s makeup FX company, share interesting details about the challenges of shooting in real cornfields and creating appliances for then-uncast young characters, respectively. “Fly on the Wall” is a collection of on-set footage from a few key moments—though the best behind-the-scenes bit appears in “To Live and Die,” when the juvenile actors are seen returning their weapons to a prop box at the end of the day’s shooting. To bad that, on screen, these kiddie killers have nothing on the terror tots of THE CHILDREN or ORPHAN’s Esther (played by Isabelle Fuhrman, who’s on hand here too, but only as an “Additional Voice”; bet the filmmakers are kicking themselves over that one now)—both of which also DVDebut next month and either of which is a better bet than this CORN ball.


U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney's Husbands Death Tragedy

U.S. Rep. Carolyn Maloney was overwhelmed by grief Saturday after learning her husband had died suddenly during a mountain-climbing expedition in China.

"She's still numb but she's heartbroken," said George Arzt, a longtime family friend who said President Obama and Secretary of State Clinton had both called to express their condolences.

"They were unbelievably intertwined," Arzt said of the Maloneys. "He was always at her side."

Clifton Harlan Wells Maloney, 71, a millionaire investment banker, was an avid mountaineer who ran the New York City Marathon 20 times.

He reached the 27,000-foot summit of Cho Oyu, the sixth highest peak in the world, on Thursday, then came down to a base camp at 23,000 feet where he died in his sleep on Friday, Arzt said.

Maloney, speaking through tears, said she was talking with her daughters and unable to discuss what happened.

"We're trying to get him off the mountain," Maloney told the Daily News. "It's just so terrible."

Maloney was with his longtime climbing partner and guide Martin Schmidt when he passed away. Schmidt sent word through the family that Maloney's last words before going to sleep were, "I'm the happiest man in the world. I've just summited a beautiful mountain."

Cho Oyu, which means "Turquoise Goddess" in Tibetan, is on the border of China and Tibet. Maloney was in China at the time of his death, Arzt said.

In a posting on his blog about two weeks ago, Schmidt said the pair of mountaineers were making steady progress toward Cho Oyu's summit.

"The best words we have to say from Tibet is that we are happy, acclimatizing very well - Clif [sic] not having any headaches, body aches, tooth aches or brain aches and that we are on schedule with our plans," he wrote.

Arzt said removing Maloney's body from the mountain will be complicated because China doesn't allow helicopters into its air space.

He said Clinton planned to intervene, but the State Department was unable to immediately confirm that last night.

Carolyn Maloney, 63, who represents the upper East Side, recently abandoned plans to challenge U.S. Sen. Kirsten Gillibrand for the seat formerly held by Clinton.

Her husband was her closest political ally and served as treasurer for all her campaigns, said Trudy Mason, a Democratic state committeewoman and longtime family friend.

"What Carolyn said to me this morning was, 'He was my rock,'" Mason said. "Of all my friends, they are among the happiest and most long-term couples that I know. They were truly a partnership in everything they did."

Maloney had planned to host an event last night to thank supporters of her Senate effort, and several of them arrived at her apartment who had not heard the news.

"This is really a shock," said Liz Abzug, 57, daughter of late U.S. Rep. Bella Abzug. "He was in very good shape. I'm sure she'll get through it, but this is devastating."

The couple, who married in 1976, have two daughters, Christina, 28, a lawyer, and Virginia, 21, a student at Princeton.

Clifton Maloney graduated from Princeton and Harvard Business School and served in the Pacific as a Navy lieutenant on destroyers from 1960 to 1963.

He worked many years at Goldman Sachs then founded his own investment company, C.H.W. Maloney & Co.


New Starbucks Coffee In a Paper Tube!

Starbucks VIA Ready Brew instant coffee is being launched through an online campaign at Starbucks website. A short video describes how "other" instant coffee is made and then how Starbucks VIA Ready Brew is made. Text fills in Starbucks version of granular coffee.

Appealing to on-the-go consumers, the Starbucks instant coffee comes in a paper tube that is designed to be used anywhere hot water is available.

The website includes an image gallery of satisfied Starbucks VIA users. Comments include questions and users' thoughts on this new product. Several recipes using Starbucks VIA Ready Brew are available to entice users to give it a try.


Tim Tebow In Hospital

Florida quarterback Tim Tebow was taken to the hospital by ambulance after taking a shot to the head while being sacked in the third quarter of the No. 1 Gators’ game against Kentucky at Commonwealth Stadium on Saturday night.

There was no immediate report on the quarterback’s condition.

Tebow, the 2007 Heisman Trophy winner, was sacked by Wildcats defensive end Taylor Wyndham on a third-and-6 play from the Kentucky 9. Tebow didn’t appear to see Wyndham, who hit him squarely in the chest. As Tebow fell to the ground, the back of his head hit Gators tackle Marcus Gilbert’s knee.

Tebow, a senior from Jacksonville, Fla., lay motionless on the turf for several seconds. He was eventually able to sit up, and was then helped to the Florida sideline by trainers and coaches, where his parents came down from the stands to join him. At one point, the entire Florida team was on the field to check on their star quarterback. Kentucky officials had a motorized cart and backboard in place to remove Tebow from the field.

Fingers crossed for the kid

The Scores Report.