Here’s something that makes for interesting reading.
Melissa Dahl, in a feature for Body Odd in msnbc.com, said automatic faucets, which were supposed to reduce the risk of the spread of disease by minimizing contact between users, could be harboring more germs than the old-fashioned kind.
She cited a study by Johns Hopkins University which found the housing of hands-free automatic faucets to have more bacteria than the old manual kind. One reason apparently was that automatic faucets had more parts, compared to manual types, where bacteria could grow.
Another theory was the decreased water flow of automatic faucets, often chosen to help conserve water, was not flushing out bacteria growth.
Dahl said researchers, led by Dr. Emily Snydor, tested electronic and manual faucets in patient-care areas of Johns Hopkins Hospital over a seven-week period from December 2008 to January 2009.
She reported, “The team found Legionella (the virus that causes Legionnaire’s disease, a severe and sometimes deadly form of pneumonia) growing in 50 percent of cultured water samples from 20 electronic faucets—compared to 15 percent of water cultures from 20 of the older faucets in the same patient-care areas.”
The report said, immediately following the results of the study, all of the 20 electronic faucets at Johns Hopkins Hospital were removed from the patient-care areas and replaced with the manual kind. A hundred more were set to be replaced throughout the hospital, and a new clinical building being constructed would also have manual faucets.
But Dahl added that Snydor said the results of the study did not mean people should drop the habit of washing their hands after going to the bathroom. She quoted her as saying, “A person goes to the airport, and goes to the bathroom one time—that’s really low exposure.” But in hospitals, Snydor pointed out that patients already had weakened immune systems, hence the concern.
The newspapers reported recently that Vice President Jejomar Binay was warning the public not to believe text messages saying they had won in raffles supposedly conducted by his office or an organization associated with him.
Mobile phone users should realize by now that scam artists simply change the names of government officials or agencies supposedly behind these raffles, but the messages remain basically the same. They should try saving those messages when they get them and compare.
When Joseph Estrada was president, it was a project run by his wife Loi Ejercito who was giving away the prizes. After Gloria Macapagal-Arroyo took over, it was supposedly a foundation headed by her husband Mike that was behind those raffles. Now it is Binay’s office that is the source of thousands of cash in prizes from raffles that “winners” have not even joined.
The names of the offices usually sound almost identical to those of legitimate government agencies. If people do not bother to check, it is easy to believe the messages are genuine.
I even heard a story, probably apocryphal, that Governor Amando M. Tetangco Jr. of Bangko Sentral ng Pilipinas also received a message informing him he had won in a raffle conducted by the very agency he headed.
People who tried to collect their winnings often ended up losers instead. They would be asked for so much phone loads, supposedly a requirement for the release of their money. Of course, they usually end up several hundred pesos poorer, while the bearer of the “good news” is never heard from again.
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