Detox clinic closes for bed bugs, staff told to use ‘sick or vacation’ time

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MONROE, N.C (FOX 46 CHARLOTTE) June 19, 2019 by Matthew Grant – A detox center is turning away patients due to a bed bug infestation but employees tell FOX 46 they’re the ones who are suffering.

A note on the door at Daymark Recovery Services in Monroe says they are “temporarily closed.” The clinic offers detoxification services for people suffering from a mental health or substance illness.

An employee who works there, who asked to remain anonymous, says staff were told they had to use “sick or vacation time” during the forced time-off or else stay home without pay.

“Obviously, we have had a breakdown in communication somewhere,” said president and CEO Billy West Jr., who says that is not company policy. “We are going to make sure that all employees have the correct information today.”

West says it is “not our normal operating procedure” to ask employees to take vacation time or sick leave when they are not sick. He says employees who want to work during the clinic’s closure can do so at one of three other locations.

West hopes to have the bed bug problem resolved “soon.”

The Monroe clinic should reopen Friday night, West said.

Daymark Recovery Services Statement

“Please know that we have four facility based crisis units that provide crisis and detoxification services for approximately 4,000 people suffering from a mental health or substance illness annually. Bed bugs were a sporadic problem over 10 years ago but since our new protocols we have had no problems up until this most recent incident and anticipate resolution soon. We also anticipate this resolution to be long standing.

Regarding employee payment concerns, this comes as a surprise to me given our protocols haven’t changed in how we have handled similar issues related to closures due to acts of God or anything out of the employee control. I can only assume there has been a miscommunication somewhere. The following protocols should be taking place. I will bullet for easy reading. The short of this is, no employee should be forced to take leave without pay or vacation time if they prefer to work.

During any such closure all employees have the choice of:

They may go to one of our outpatient clinics and working. In this case, the Union Out Patient Office is less than 3 miles from the Union Facility Based Crisis and is open Monday though Friday, 8am to 8pm. Employees may choose to work there. They also have the choice of outpatient clinic options in Albemarle (30 min), Concord (20 min) and Salisbury (45 min). For those employees needing work after normal business hours, they may work in our Concord Facility Based Crisis Unit.

If any employee prefers not to work in one of our other inpatient or outpatient sites they may choose to take leave without pay or use their vacation time. If they choose either of these options, it is their choice. No one is to use sick leave unless they are truly sick.
I am not sure where the information you shared with me came from for it is not our normal operating procedure, nor can sick leave ever be used as use described. Obviously, we have had a breakdown in communication somewhere. To that end, we are going to make sure that all employees have the correct information today. For those employees that may have already been subject to time off and did not understand the process, we will address that individually with them so they will not have an adverse consequence.

Thank you for your interest in our services and for bringing this to my attention.

United Flight Hit with ‘Ant-mageddon’ as Bugs ‘Spill Out’ of Suitcase in Overhead Bin, Says Passenger

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June 17, 2019 – The plane will “be taken out of service for extermination,” according to a statement from United.

Forget snakes on a plane! A United flight experienced a creepy, crawly situation that left passengers bugging out.

A passenger on a United flight from Venice, Italy, to Newark, New Jersey, reported an experience that left her and several seat mates feeling “heeby-jeeby-goose-bumpy-get-me-a-gin gross.”

“On the plane from Venice to New York, when a large, fat ant walks over my pillow,” Charlotte Burns wrote in a Twitter thread that went on to document her ant-filled, 9-hour journey. “Minutes later, another fat little bug hurries over the television screen. Then another one—on my arm!”

After she spotted the first few insects and alerted the crew, she says, flight attendants asked if she could wait until after take off to have her seat inspected. When she reported more bugs had appeared once airborne, she writes that she was asked to wait until after the meal service, which was just beginning.

Burns notes that she didn’t want to “be difficult or cause a fuss,” but as the critters multiplied she felt couldn’t sit idly by.

At one point, a fellow passenger in the center row of seats on the transatlantic flight said he had seen a “parade” of ants in an overhead bin in the row in front of Burns.

She and the other passenger, who she dubbed “middle aisle guy” in her Twitter saga, stood up as a flight attendant came through to try and take care of the situation.

“Me and the middle aisle guy are standing up like we are the ant enforcers while the senior cabin crew guy rocks up, armed with… a flashlight and a wet cloth. Sure, ant-mageddon might be undone with a lemony rag, why not,” she writes.

“Me and middle aisle guy say please take the bags out and check beneath. He does. ANTS! Ants lie beneath,” she recounts.

The crew member woke the sleeping owner of the bag, inspected it, and found it was indeed full of live ants that, in Burns’s depiction “spill out.”

“The guy in front pulls down his case (which btw isn’t zipped shut, as middle aisle guy notes to me in an aside),” she writes, “and ants ants ants spill out, running in every which direction.”

The crew member, Burns says, then opened the case on the seat, which resulted in “ants running everywhere.” The owner of the bag, she writes, “is using his hands as little tweezers, picking them off one by one. Cabin guy is using sterile lemon wipes.”

Burns says she was offered “three kinds of white wine” for her troubles and other passengers were “unflappable” when it came to the bugs. In a statement to PEOPLE, a representative for United noted the ants were “contained to a limited area of the cabin.”

Burns also alleges that another flight attendant asked her if she was “going to do anything” seemingly in retaliation against the man whose bag contained the bugs. The crew member, Burns says, stated that the bugs “came from his bag. They weren’t on the plane.”

In a statement, United told PEOPLE, “We are concerned by the experience a customer reported on United flight 169 from Venice to Newark. We had been in contact with the crew during the flight, where they advised the ants were isolated from a customer’s bag in the overhead bin, and was contained to a limited area of the cabin.”

The message continues, “The airplane landed at Newark this afternoon and has be taken out of service for extermination. We followed proper protocol by notifying customs, immigration, as well as agriculture of the issue.”

United has had its fair share of passenger grievances aired on social media. In January, a medical emergency onboard a Hong Kong-bound flight caused passengers to be stranded in freezing cold for 16 hours. That same month, a passenger announced that he was suing the airline over what he alleges was a coverup of an incident in which a pilot was almost “sucked out” of the plane.

Bedbugs: What you need to know to avoid bedbugs on vacation

What to do when you check-in a hotel

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WATE) June 10, 2019 – Don Dare – As you head out for your vacation this summer, be vigilant about checking for bedbugs. Pest control professionals report that a majority of their business is treating hotels.

Bedbugs can be found anywhere, from luxury hotels to a summer camp. Imagine you’re on that vacation you have looked forward to, only to wake up your first morning covered in bedbug bites. The insects are so tiny, they’re difficult to see, but the bites are painful.

Bedbugs can be found almost everywhere

Experts say bedbugs like to hide out in mattresses near the bed boards. Dr. Brittany Campbell is an entomologist. She studies insects for the National Pest Management Association.

“We found that 97 percent of pest control professionals were treating for bedbugs in the United States,” Campbell said. “They can be found, I know this is surprising, but almost anywhere. They will bite you. Their bite can cause an allergic reaction. It can cause a skin reaction. Everyone’s immune system is different., but you can have an allergic reaction. In severe cases, those reactions can create blisters.”

Campbell says bedbugs are resilient creatures. They’ve developed resistance to the pesticides we have on the market now.

“They’re very difficult to control yourself, so I really encourage you to reach out to a professional,” she said.

Killing bedbugs isn’t easy

Mark Nadolski with Russell’s Pest Control says bedbugs hide in the smallest places in and around beds and box springs, and killing them isn’t easy.

How to check for bedbugs in a hotel

“I would really encourage you to go to the bed, pull down the sheets. Go all the way down to the mattress. Look in the mattress seams. That’s where bed bugs are going to hide,” she said.

If you find bedbugs in your room while on vacation, take a picture of them to show to the manager and insist on another room. If you think you have brought the bugs home with you from your vacation, it’s best to get professional help to zap an infestation.

Bed bug incident reported at Ansonia Middle School

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ANSONIA, Conn. (WTNH) – June 4, 2019 — There is a bed bug outbreak at a middle school in Ansonia.

A parent contacted News 8 after a recording about the bed bug outbreak was sent out to the school community by the Ansonia Middle School principal on Monday.

The recording advises parents that a letter will be going home with students about a recent incident involving a single insect that was found in one of the exam room’s in the school nurse’s office.

The insect was removed and after an analysis from state officials, it was determined that the insect was common bed bug.

To ensure that the school is free of any bed bugs, an inspection will be conducted by a pest control specialist, as well as a follow up treatment to effective areas.

A letter from Dr. Carol Merlone, Ansonia Superintendent of Schools, reads:

A single bed bug was found in Ansonia Middle School on Monday, June 3, and a licensed pest control specialist determined today, June 4, that there isn’t any evidence that there are any other bed bugs in the school.

“A letter was sent home with Ansonia Middle School students, notifying parents and guardians about this isolated incident,” Dr. Carol Merlone, Superintendent of Schools, reported this afternoon. She said the school nurse found an insect in one of the exam rooms in her office, and the insect was removed from the exam room and immediately sent for analysis to the Department of Entomology at the Connecticut Agricultural Experimental Station in New Haven.  It was determined that the insect was a “common” bed bug, Dr. Merlone said. She added that the Valley Health Department was also notified.

The parent letter provided information about bed bugs, including that they do not carry diseases but are a nuisance; that they cannot survive out of their own environment; and that schools are not likely to have a major infestation but rather may have a few bugs which are carried by students or adults. Anyone with additional questions about bed bugs may call the Naugatuck Valley Health District at (203) 881-3255.

“We are working with the student and the family,” Dr. Merlone said, adding that the licensed pest control specialist will return to ensure that the school remains free of bed bugs.

The final day of the school year is this Friday, June 7.

Warning signs of a bed bug infestation

bedset_bedbugs.jpgLongview News-Journal May 11, 2019  kgentsch

When traveling overnight, travelers may have their minds on any number of things. Vacationers may be focused on fun in the sun, while the minds of business travelers may be preoccupied with important meetings. Few travelers may be thinking about bed bugs, even though hotels can be vulnerable to infestations of these unwelcome creatures.

Bed bugs might be considered a pesky nuisance, but such a reputation overlooks their potential to cause serious harm. According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency, bed bugs can cause allergic reactions, including anaphylaxis. The Mayo Clinic notes that anaphylaxis is a potentially life-threatening allergic reaction that causes the immune system to release a flood of chemicals, potentially resulting in shock. During such reactions, blood pressure can drop suddenly and the airways can narrow, compromising a person’s ability to breathe.

Bed bug infestations also can contribute to skin infections resulting from bites. Such infections may include impetigo, ecthyma and an infection of the lymph vessels known as lymphangitis. The presence of lymphangitis may indicate that a skin condition is worsening, potentially causing bacteria to spread into the blood and putting people’s lives in jeopardy.

Bed bugs can infest hotels and other public places, including movie theaters. But they also can occur at home. Learning to recognize when bed bugs are present can help people avoid the uncomfortable and potentially unhealthy consequences of infestations.

Red, itchy bites:  Flat, red welts in zigzag lines or small clusters are indicative of bed bugs on humans. Bites, which may be left in straight rows as well, are often irritating, prompting many people to scratch them, which can lead to infection. Arms and shoulders, which many people tend to leave exposed while they sleep, are common areas for bed bugs to appear.

Discomfort sleeping: Bed bugs can be found in places other than beds, but they’re most often found in bed. Some people first suspect bed bug infestations after some restless nights of sleep.

Odor: Bed bugs might be tiny, but that does not mean they don’t smell. Bed bugs release chemical substances known as pheromones. When released in large amounts, these pheromones can produce an odor reminiscent of a dirty locker room.

Stains on bedding: You might need a magnifying glass and/or flashlight to see the stains left by bed bugs, which tend to be rust-colored, reddish-brown or small and brown. These stains will appear after bugs have fed on humans and are typically seen near the corner or edges of the bed.

Bed bug infestations can be uncomfortable and alarming. Learning to recognize signs of such infestations can help people evict these unwanted visitors from their homes.

Woman claims bed bugs bit her at Bessemer theater

CBS

May 20, 2019   Emma Simmons

BESSEMER, Ala. (WIAT) — Scary movies can take a back seat to this real-life horror story.

A woman took to social media Sunday night, claiming bed bugs were in her seat at the Premiere Cinema 14 Promenade in Bessemer.

movie_seat_bbsCrystal Crawford Youngblood posted pictures she says she took at the theater, one of which shows raised patches on her arm, which she claims are bed bug bites.

Premiere Cinemas denied Youngblood’s claims in a statement posted on Facebook. The theater says “no evidence of insect activity has been detected.”
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Also, the theater is in the process of upgrading to “all new leather reclining seats.

Bedbug bill leads to eviction, Savannah woman says

May 21, 2019  by Martin Staunton

SAVANNAH, Ga. (WSAV) – A Savannah woman says a problem with bedbugs and maintenance issues led to her eviction.

The single mother & new grandmother is now looking for a new place to live over a dispute she lost in court with her landlord, Timberland Apartments.

39-year old Juanita Porter says she’s lived in Savannah her entire life, but this is the first time she’s been evicted.

“I’m humiliated,” she said, choking back tears. “It’s really breaking me and if I break, my whole family breaks, because I am all my kids have. And the thing that makes it so bad is I got to put my personal business on the news just to be heard.”

On her final day as a resident, Porter received some of her final guests — a pair of code compliance to investigate her complaints of shoddy maintenance, windows, wall cracks, and bedbugs.

Porter says she should have called long ago when a bad situation grew worse.

“When I moved in Timberland two years ago in A-12, I’d been having problems with mold, plumbing,” she explained, adding that she dealt with flooding and mold. “I’ve lost half of my belongings in A-12. So I got an emergency move in September 2018.”

Once she was moved into the new apartment, Porter said she discovered bedbugs were present.

“Last week of March, first week of April I saw bedbug activity. I was bitten up,” she said, adding, “When I reported it to the landlord, they sent the exterminator out, who confirmed it was bedbugs.”

Porter says there was a $750 fee attached to her rent payment for the bedbug treatment.

“I signed the promise to pay before I found out about the infestation. I was trying to do the right thing,” she said. “Never had a problem with rent. There were times they had to credit me because they were overcharging me from Section 8 and I had to go to my caseworker for her to clarify it.”

News 3 went to the leasing office to speak with someone to get answers. The current property manager at Timberland Apartments identified herself as Miss Sunny.

She declined an on-camera interview saying “no comment.” Miss Sunny cited tenant privacy issues as to why she could not talk to News 3 about Porter’s eviction.

Porter says this situation is taking a toll on two fronts.

“They’re not only retaliating, hurting me financially, they’re hurting me and my children emotionally,” she said, adding, “I lost everything and people know I work hard to get everything I had on my own…on my own and now we’re put out.”

Porter is now out of time to find a new home, but while it may be her first eviction, it’s not her first fight for something she believes is right.

“I fought my way through college. Four long years, for that special day to be taken away from me,” she said. “That’s not right and every time I go and talk to them they and they’re always making it like it’s my fault because I don’t know the codes, I don’t know what’s supposed to be what.  I don’t know what they can get away with.”

Porter says she did sign a promissory note to cover the eviction cost and that’s how the landlord won the case against her. She says she’s stepping forward to remind renters to be very mindful of all the language in the lease, or you could find yourself covering an expense you may not believe you’re responsible for.

Once the code compliance inspection is complete, Timberland Apartments will be notified of any violations found and given time to fix them.

 

Corpus Christi ISD fumigating bus after bed bug report

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May 15, 2019  Veronica Flores

We contacted CCISD Office of Communications Director Leanne Libby said on May 6, one bed bug was found on a student’s backpack at an elementary school. Libby said no additional bed bugs were found.

CCISDbedbug1.jpgIn a statement today, CCISD said.

“In addition to notifying the county health department, the district notified parents and staff in the classroom where the single bug was found. As a precautionary measure, one school bus as well as one classroom received pest-control treatment.”

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Bed Bug Infestation Sweeping Metro Denver

FOX31 – July 18, 2017, by Keagan Harsh

DENVER — Tourists are coming to Colorado in droves this summer, and it’s not just visitors of the two-legged kind.  Our state is seeing an infestation of bed bugs.

Christina Thomas experienced it first hand. Thomas was visiting an Extended Stay America in Colorado Springs and says she woke up to find bed bugs all over her pillow.


“I woke up and three inches from my face I see a spot, and I look at it and say ‘no way, is that a bed bug?'” she said.

Christina isn’t the only person dealing with bed bugs in Colorado.

Jacob Marsh is one of several Denver exterminators absolutely overwhelmed with bed bug calls.

“It’s infestation levels over the whole city pretty much,” he said. “Right now we’re working 6 or 7 days a week,” said Marsh.

He says this is the worst time of year for bed bugs. However, Colorado’s infestation actually began several years ago. He estimates more than 3,500 homes are treated for bed bugs in the Denver area every year.


It’s a problem Marsh attributes to both the state’s growing population and Colorado’s popularity as a tourist destination.

“Denver is usually ranked 4th to 6th worst in the nation. We get a lot of good things when things are booming like it is, but unfortunately when people are coming in and traveling you also get a lot of unwanted visitors,” he said.

If you’re staying at a hotel there are things you can do to try and keep the bugs away.

First, store your luggage away from the bed on luggage racks or even in the bathroom.


Also, check the sheets, mattress, and bed frame for signs of the bugs.

One of the biggest misconceptions about bed bugs is that they’re too small to see. Most are actually about the size of an apple seed, and similar in appearance.

As for Christine Thomas, she isn’t taking any chances. She checked out of the hotel and left.

‘Kissing bug’ sickens more in Los Angeles than Zika and few know they have it – deadly Chagas disease

This insect bites people near the lips or eyes, inserts bacteria, then about 20 years later, the victim suffers a heart attack. Olive View-UCLA Medical

March 28, 2016 |by Susan Abram | Daily News, Los Angeles

This insect bites people near the lips or eyes, inserts bacteria, then about 20 years later, the victim suffers a heart attack.  Olive View-UCLA Medical Center is working to help detect Chagas. The clinic is holding community screenings across the San Fernando Valley to find people who may be infected.

Some call it the kissing bug because it leaves a painless bite near a sleeping person’s lips.

But among health experts, including those from the federal government, the cone-headed Triatomine is no prince awakening a sleeping beauty. It’s an assassin, because it leaves behind a parasite in its love bite that can be deadly.

Photos of the dime-size insect hang inside Dr. Sheba Meymandi’s medical office as if on a wanted poster. The bug, she said, carries the Chagas disease, which can cause heart failure if left untreated.

An estimated 300,000 people across the United States may have Chagas disease, Meymandi said, and the only place in the nation where it’s treated is the clinic she oversees at Olive View-UCLA Medical Center in Sylmar. Started in 2007, the Chagas clinic has treated 200 people, but Meymandi and her team said they are ready to take on more patients.

That’s why she and her staff are working with primary physicians at the four hospitals and 19 health clinics overseen by the Los Angeles County Department of Health Services. In addition, Providence Health & Services will offer Chagas screenings at a dozen free health clinics on Sundays at churches across the San Fernando Valley for the rest of the year. An upcoming screening will be held from 1 to 5 p.m. April 3 at New Hope of the Nazarene, 15055 Oxnard St, Van Nuys, California.

“It’s very clear that we need to diagnose early and treat early before the onset of complications,” said Meymandi, a cardiologist. Ten percent of those with Chagas suffer from heart failure, one of the most expensive conditions to treat, costing $32 billion year nationwide, she said. That figure could rise to $70 billion by 2030.

Chagas disease was once considered exotic, but more is known about it now than about the Zika virus. Still, most people have no idea they have it or, once they do, lack information about where to receive treatment, Meymandi said.

The disease is most common in rural Mexico and Latin America, researchers have said, adding that it kills more people in South America than malaria.Meymandi said anyone who was born in Mexico or South America should have a blood test.

But U.S.-born residents also are infected. The insect is present in more than 20 states. At least 40 percent of raccoons tested in Griffith Park carried Chagas disease, Meymandi said.

“Most of the people we see and treat in the U.S. have had it for decades,” Meymandi said. “We have the bug here, we have the parasite here. You can definitely acquire Chagas in the United States.”

An infected insect, which hides in dwellings made from mud, adobe, straw or palm thatch, crawls out at night to feed on blood. It is called the kissing bug because it feeds on a sleeper’s face, then defecates on the wound, leaving a parasite behind.

Infection takes place when the parasite enters the body through mucous membranes or broken skin, caused when the sleeper scratches the wound, eyes or mouth, according to the federal Centers for Disease and Prevention. The parasite can lie dormant for years, then cause heart disease, and if not found and treated, death.

Symptoms can include fever, fatigue, body aches, headaches, rash, loss of appetite, diarrhea and vomiting. But sometimes there are no symptoms until decades later.

Only two drugs exist to treat Chagas disease, and neither is approved by the U.S. Federal Drug Administration yet, though both can be provided through the CDC, Meymandi said.

“It’s very simple to treat,” Meymandi said. “But the process to go get the drugs is a challenge.”

Jose Duran, a Bellflower resident, said he learned he had Chagas disease after he tried to donate blood seven months ago. He said he would have never known he had Chagas disease otherwise. He had no symptoms.

“I went to donate blood for the first time, because I heard it was good for you to donate once in a while,” he said. Then he received a phone call.

It’s not uncommon for people to learn they have Chagas disease after donating blood, Meymandi and others said. In 2006, the Red Cross isolated 21 cases of Chagas in Southern California donors. In 2007, the figure more than doubled to 46. In 2008, there were 55 cases.

The National Red Cross would not provide additional figures.

“I got scared. I was like, wow, what is this?” the 40 year old Duran said of his reaction,when he learned what he had.

As a child, Duran lived on a ranch in Querétaro, a small state in north-central Mexico. His brother also tested positive for Chagas. He doesn’t remember being bitten, he said.

Duran was referred to the Chagas clinic and, after two months of treatment, learned Thursday he was in good health.

“Most people don’t know they have this,” he said. “If they get tested, they can get well.”

#SayNOtoPESTICIDES!