SolarWorld weighs legal action following alleged Chinese spy attack

first_imgSolarWorld weighs legal action following alleged Chinese spy attackAlthough condemning the alleged hacking as a “criminal act,” SolarWorld’s chief exec also describes it as “a big honor and a nod to our excellent technology.” May 20, 2014 Edgar Meza Legal Manufacturing Markets Markets & Policy Share Germany’s SolarWorld is considering damage claims against China following an announcement by U.S. authorities that five Chinese military officers had been indicted for computer hacking, economic espionage and other offenses directed at six U.S. companies. In addition to SolarWorld’s U.S. division in Hillsboro, Oregon, other alleged victims include Toshiba-owned nuclear energy group Westinghouse Electric Co.; United States Steel Corp.; metals company Allegheny Technologies Inc. (ATI); the United Steelworkers (USW) labor union; and aluminum giant Alcoa Inc. According to Bloomberg, SolarWorld lawyers are investigating damage claims following the announcement by the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI). The indictment further notes that in 2012, at about the same time the U.S. Commerce Department found that Chinese solar product manufacturers had dumped products into the country at prices below fair value, the accused officers allegedly stole thousands of files including information about SolarWorld’s cash flow, manufacturing metrics, production line information, costs and privileged attorney-client communications relating to ongoing trade litigation, among other things. “Such information would have enabled a Chinese competitor to target SolarWorld’s business operations aggressively from a variety of angles,” the FBI said. Speaking to Bloomberg, SolarWorld CEO Frank Asbeck added, “On the one hand, this is a big honor and nod to our excellent technology that part of the Chinese competition seems to deem it necessary to spy on us. On the other hand, it’s a criminal act to steal what we are developing with a lot of money.” SolarWorld has led an aggressive campaign in the U.S. and European Union against Chinese dumping of crystalline silicon photovoltaic products that has resulted in legal victories on both sides of the Atlantic for the company headquartered in Bonn, Germany. Chinese government officials have vehemently rebuked the charges as “based on deliberately fabricated facts” and “ulterior motives.” In a statement, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Qin Gang said: “The Chinese government, the Chinese military and their relevant personnel have never engaged or participated in cyber theft of trade secrets. The U.S. accusation against Chinese personnel is purely ungrounded with ulterior motives.” European solar lobby group EU ProSun, headed by SolarWorld’s marketing and communications chief Milan Nitzschke, said on Monday that the “massive attacks by Chinese military personnel” occurred in the context of the anti-dumping investigation against Chinese solar firms and were directed against SolarWorld as the lead plaintiff in the inquiry. EU ProSun noted that other companies that accused China of unfair dumping practices, including steel companies, became targets of Chinese cyber attacks. “Apparently, China has been trying to specifically damage companies that are fighting for their right to fair competition.” Nitzchke added: “China is unfortunately still not a serious trading partner, but behaves like a criminal who tries by all illegal means to displace Western competitors. It will take much time before China comes to the realization that growth is only possible through fair trade relations. It’s therefore all the more important that the EU and the United States use all means to prevent illegal Chinese activities.” The EU ProSun president called on Europe to examine and enforce its current anti-dumping measures and added that “industrial espionage must be sharply punished.”Popular content The Hydrogen Stream: 20 MW green hydrogen plant in Finland, two Australian projects move forward Sergio Matalucci 20 April 2021 pv-magazine.com Storegga, Shell and Harbour Energy want to set up a 20 MW blue hydrogen production facility in the U.K. Australia’s Origin Energy wants to build a hy… Enabling aluminum in batteries Mark Hutchins 27 April 2021 pv-magazine.com Scientists in South Korea and the UK demonstrated a new cathode material for an aluminum-ion battery, which achieved impressive results in both speci… ITRPV: Large formats are here to stay Mark Hutchins 29 April 2021 pv-magazine.com The 2021 edition of the International Technology Roadmap for Photovoltaics (ITRPV) was published today by German engineering association VDMA. 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Reining Riders Declared for NAJYRC

first_img SIGN UP Horse Sport Enews We’ll send you our regular newsletter and include you in our monthly giveaways. PLUS, you’ll receive our exclusive Rider Fitness digital edition with 15 exercises for more effective riding. Subscribe to the Horse Sport newsletter and get an exclusive bonus digital edition! Email* The Adequan FEI North American Junior and Young Rider Championships, presented by Gotham North, will be held July 17-21, 2013 in Lexington, Kentucky.cThe Canadian Reining Committee has announced the declared riders for this competition:Young RidersGeorgia Yozipovic – ABPearl Aebly – ABStephanie Thomson – ABMadison Steed – ABJunior RidersHannah Steed – ABMaxine Whiteside – ABHaley Franc – SKEmily Wilson – ONFrom Chef d’Equipe, Wendy Dyer, “It is great to have the riders from Alberta participating. It should be an exciting championship with returning individual gold medalist Haley Franc to keep the Juniors on their toes. Emily Wilson, although a Junior, is the veteran of the teams, this being her third year. Emily’s horse – Miss Cielo Chex – is also no stranger as she has competed each year and medaled several times at the Championships since 2008. These championships are a fantastic experience for our young talent and I look forward to meeting all the new faces.“I want to thank the parents for being so organized and working hard to make everything come together and thank you also to our sponsors for their support.”The NAJYRC is the premier equestrian competition in North America for junior and young riders, age 14-21. Young equestrians come from the United States, Bermuda, Canada, Mexico, Puerto Rico, and the Caribbean Islands to vie for team and individual FEI medals. Tags: Adequan FEI North American Junior & Young Rider Championships, Emily Wilson, Haley Franc, Wendy Dyer, Georgia Yozipovic, Pearl Aebly, Stephanie Thomson, Madison Steed, Hannah Steed, Maxine Whiteside, More from Horse Sport:Christilot Boylen Retires From Team SportAfter an exemplary career as one of Canada’s top Dressage riders, seven-time Olympian Christilot Boylen has announced her retirement from team competition.2020 Royal Agricultural Winter Fair CancelledFor only the second time in its history, The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair has been cancelled but plans are being made for some virtual competitions.Royal Agricultural Winter Fair Statement on 2020 EventAs the Province of Ontario starts to reopen, The Royal’s Board and staff will adhere to all recommendations put forward by government and health officials.Government Financial Assistance for Ontario FarmersOntario Equestrian has recently released this update of several financial assistance packages available, including those for farm business.last_img read more

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Flashy mare Freestyle Takes the Freestyle at Royal Windsor

first_img Email* SIGN UP Horse Sport Enews Subscribe to the Horse Sport newsletter and get an exclusive bonus digital edition! We’ll send you our regular newsletter and include you in our monthly giveaways. PLUS, you’ll receive our exclusive Rider Fitness digital edition with 15 exercises for more effective riding. On day three of CHI Royal Windsor Horse Show, the highlight of the evening performance was the CDI4* Al Shira’aa Grand Prix Freestyle to Music. Mount St John Freestyle lived up to her name; ridden by Olympic gold medallist Charlotte Dujardin, the pair dominated the class, running away with the victory and was the only one of the 12 combinations to break the 80% barrier with a score of 81.2%.The nine-year-old mare produced a confident programme that made the most of her off-the-floor paces, impressive passage and extensions.“That was only her second freestyle and it’s not something we practice at home so I am really happy. Everything she does, she does so well and I can’t ask for more, especially at this stage,” said Charlotte who rode the programme to the music ‘How To Train Your Dragon’ that was originally made for Valegro. “It was Valegro’s very first music and brings back many memories and always gives me goosebumps – and I just love riding to it.”Carl Hester also chose to introduce Hawtins Delicato to freestyle using a former successful programme, originally used for his Olympic team gold medal horse, Uthopia. Delicato, like Freestyle, however also looked at ease performing to music.“He felt much more rideable tonight,” said Carl who bought the British-bred gelding as a four-year-old from breeder Judith Davies, and has since bought a sibling. “He is a very exciting horse and at this stage just needs nursing along.”Former British team rider Gareth Hughes finished one better tonight to make the top three with Don Carissimo and was ‘over the moon’ with the outcome. “That is only his second outing this year and was a whole lot better than the first – he is a real trier,” said Gareth.Once again the five British riders took the first five places, with British-based Dane Ulrik Moelgaard and Michigan completing the top six.Complete results here. Tags: Charlotte Dujardin, Royal Windsor Horse Show, CDI4* Al Shira’aa Grand Prix Freestyle to Music, Mount St John Freestyle, More from Horse Sport:Christilot Boylen Retires From Team SportAfter an exemplary career as one of Canada’s top Dressage riders, seven-time Olympian Christilot Boylen has announced her retirement from team competition.2020 Royal Agricultural Winter Fair CancelledFor only the second time in its history, The Royal Agricultural Winter Fair has been cancelled but plans are being made for some virtual competitions.Royal Agricultural Winter Fair Statement on 2020 EventAs the Province of Ontario starts to reopen, The Royal’s Board and staff will adhere to all recommendations put forward by government and health officials.Government Financial Assistance for Ontario FarmersOntario Equestrian has recently released this update of several financial assistance packages available, including those for farm business.last_img read more

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Oregon wildlife officials euthanize black bear cub after it became too friendly with humans

first_imgDeputies are working to get this bear cub near Hagg Lake to go back into the woods… please stay away from the area near Boat Ramp A. pic.twitter.com/tI8m5yTbyk— WCSO Oregon (@WCSOOregon) June 13, 2019However, warm weather attracted crowds to the park, and people had been feeding the bear, the Salem Statesman Journal reported. In addition, the bear was so used to humans that it allowed them to get close enough to take selfies with it, which were posted all over social media, according to the local newspaper.Park-goers had been leaving trail mix, sunflower seeds, cracked corn and other food for the bear to eat, the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife said in a press release. It is illegal in the state of Oregon to scatter food or garbage for wildlife, the department said.“This is a classic example of why we implore members of the public not to feed bears,” said Kurt Licence, assistant district wildlife biologist for the department, in the release. “While the individuals who put food out for this bear may have had good intentions bears should never, ever be fed.”The junk food can also make the animals sick, Licence said, adding that bears are “perfectly capable” of fending for themselves.“It’s always better to leave them alone and enjoy them from a safe distance,” he said.On June 12, the bear was “lethally removed,” as relocation was not an option, the sheriff’s office announced in a Facebook post. The bear had been too habituated to the park as a result of the feeding, according to the Department of Fish and Wildlife.“We are saddened by the outcome, but leave it to the experts when it comes to these kind of decisions,” the Facebook post read. “Also, this outcome it a direct result of humans feeding and interacting with the bear.”The male bear was about 100 pounds and between 2 and 3 years old, according to the Statesman Journal. Wildlife management from the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife has to euthanize multiple bears that have become too comfortable with humans every year, the newspaper reported.Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife did not immediately respond to ABC News’ request for comment.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved. (FILE Photo) – sarkophoto/iStock(SALEM, Ore.) — Oregon wildlife officials have euthanized a young black bear after it became too friendly with humans.The Washington County Sheriff’s Office tweeted photos of the bear cub last week asking people to stay away from Hagg Lake in Scoggins Valley Park so deputies could get to it.last_img read more

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Tropical depression Beta brings heavy rain, dangerous flash flooding to Texas: Latest path

first_imgABC NewsBy MAX GOLEMBO and EMILY SHAPIRO, ABC News(NEW YORK) — Tropical depression Beta, which made landfall in Texas Monday night, is bringing pounding rain and flash flooding to Houston — and more rain is expected for the city.A flash flood watch has been issued from Victoria, Texas, to New Orleans.At least 20 water rescues have been reported in Houston and cars have been spotted trapped in floodwaters.The Harris County Sheriff’s Office is urging people to stay home.Over the next 24 hours, Beta is expected to move incredibly slowly.By Wednesday morning, the center of the storm will only near Houston — which means a lot more rain is expected for eastern Texas, possibly reaching 22 inches in some areas. About 1 foot of rain has fallen so far in some spots.Heavy rain is also expected in Louisiana, where some areas could see 6 inches of rain.Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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Landlords brace for impact of pandemic

first_imgNew York landlords are preparing for coronavirus outbreaks in their buildings, but say they will need help when the rent checks stop. (Governor Andrew Cuomo by by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images; Mayor Bill de Blasio by EuropaNewswire/Gado/Getty Images)Landlords are scrubbing down their apartment buildings, but no amount of Clorox is going to help when the rent checks stop.In a series of interviews, owners of multifamily portfolios said they have responded to the coronavirus outbreak by stepping up cleaning in their properties, staggering their employees’ shifts and having them work remotely. What they cannot control, though, is the loss of income their tenants are suffering as the coronavirus pandemic wreaks havoc with the regional economy.While most have not yet seen a drop-off in rents, many expect their cash flow to be severely strained early next month. They are hoping for lenience from lenders or relief from the government, such as Gov. Andrew Cuomo provided to financially strapped homeowners Thursday.ADVERTISEMENTThat’s not their only concern. Although none of the landlords reported cases of Covid-19 in their buildings, they had yet to hear from city or state officials about what to do when they learn of one. Some said they would notify everyone in the building, while others said it is not their duty to do so.The bucks stop hereWith a decline in rent revenue all but inevitable, landlords face uncomfortable conversations with their lenders. They are also anxiously awaiting help from the government, and some are frustrated that regulators are not forcing banks to place their mortgages in forbearance.The moment comes only nine months after state lawmakers outraged the real estate community with a tenant-friendly overhaul of rent stabilization.“This is a time where we put our differences aside, forget about June 2019 in Albany, and work together to make sure the city stays strong and resilient,” said Craig Gambardella, an attorney at Kucker Marino Winiarsky and Bittens. “If that means a community bank provides a landlord who has purchased a building a few years ago with a forbearance, that’s what I hope, as a New Yorker, the banks do.”Read more of our coverage on housing policy amid the global health crisisWest Coast pol calls for NY rent strike. Tenant groups say not so fastMortgage payments, foreclosures, bankruptcies in limbo: NYSWhat the Fed’s actions mean for the housing marketNew York halts evictions statewide due to coronavirus New York’s community banks, which are go-to lenders on rent-regulated apartments that house low-income tenants, do not have the reserves that national banks do, and those tenants often lack the savings to weather an abrupt loss of employment.“It’s only the 19th of the month, so community banks still have a little cushion,” Craig L. Price, a partner at law firm Belkin Burden Goldman, said Thursday.“Cuomo said ‘we’ll suspend mortgage payments,’ but what do they expect apartment owners to do?”Daniel Goldstein, principal, E&M ManagementHe added that banks are in conversations with Cuomo to find a solution. “[Banks] can obviously enter into their own forbearance periods, extending the loans out, simply modifying their loans,” said Price. “But I’m sure it will depend on what the governor says to them.”A spokesperson for Signature Bank said “it is too soon for us to comment” on the impact of coronavirus on their lending practices or whether the bank might give landlords a break.Requests to New York Community Bank and M&T Bank for comment went unanswered. Dime Bank declined to comment.One reason for banks’ hesitancy to lend or refinance is the uncertainty about what building portfolios are worth; appraisals have ground to a stop. “God forbid someone in the building gets hit with coronavirus, how does that impact the value?” said Gambardella. “How do appraisals happen if they can’t get in the building?”Some landlords say they would prefer assistance in the form of a tax abatement, although it is unclear how that will happen with the state budget due by April 1 and revenue plummeting for the state and its localities.“A real estate tax abatement is probably the simplest way to address [the crisis],” said one multifamily landlord. “Tomorrow the state or city could flip a switch and say, ‘property taxes are deferred and you have to pass it on to tenants.’”Like other landlords, Daniel Goldstein, principal of E&M Management, which owns thousands of units in New York City and the Hudson Valley, is concerned about what to do when the rent rolls drop — although he said he has not yet broached that subject with his lenders.“The real key issue is the banks,” Goldstein said. “Cuomo said ‘we’ll suspend mortgage payments,’ but what do they expect apartment owners to do? They’re trying to protect the homeowner. But they’re not protecting renters.”When tenants get sickLandlords and attorneys are divided on what to do when, inevitably, one of their tenants tests positive for coronavirus.Gambardella is telling his landlord clients that they aren’t required to let others in the building know if a tenant has been infected with coronavirus.“I don’t think that there is an affirmative obligation for landlords to advise their tenants that another resident was sick,” said Gambardella, adding that if a landlord has a good relationship with their tenants, and an announcement would not cause undue alarm, “it wouldn’t be such a bad idea” to post a notice.Goldstein said there has been no instruction from regulators.“There’s nothing we can do,” said Goldstein. “We can’t shut down a building — we don’t have the authority to do that — and there’s no guideline that says we should let [tenants] know.”A spokesperson for Zara Realty, which owns more than 2,000 units in New York, said that, while the situation hasn’t come up yet, it would expect the Department of Health to notify tenants of a positive test.The principal of another large New York City multifamily firm said it would not notify tenants if there were a case in their building, saying, “It’s something for the Department of Health to deal with, not us.,”But Stellar Management, which has more than 100 buildings in New York and Miami, would take a different approach.“Should a confirmed case of Covid-19 in one of our buildings be brought to our attention we are notifying all tenants to make sure they, along with our building staff, take extra precautions,” said a spokesperson.While landlords wait on guidance from the city, some real estate attorneys suggest they call their insurance carriers to see if they have coverage for loss of rent caused by the outbreak.“I’ve heard some have it and some don’t,” Gambardella said. “And obviously we will find out soon.”Scrub, scrub, scrub“Landlords are mopping, Cloroxing, whatever it takes. It’s important from a liability standpoint and from a social obligation standpoint. I don’t know any landlord who isn’t.”Craig Gambardella, real estate attorneyLandlords are swabbing down their buildings like never before to keep the new coronavirus from getting a foothold.“Our No. 1 priority is maintaining a healthy living environment for our residents,” said Stellar Management’s spokesperson. Stellar is deep-cleaning buildings multiple times a day, has shut down amenity spaces and is encouraging no-contact deliveries.Queens-based Zara is stepping up cleaning in common areas and disinfecting “doorknobs, elevator buttons and other high-touch surfaces,” a spokesperson for the firm said.“We are providing protective equipment, including masks and rubber gloves, for maintenance staff as they work in common areas and as needed to perform repair work in individual units,” said the spokesperson. “We are also distributing hand sanitizer to staff and will be setting up hand-sanitizer stations in lobbies as more supplies become available.”The responsibility to clean may also be a legal imperative, some real estate attorneys say.“Landlords are mopping, Cloroxing … whatever it takes,” said Gambardella. “It’s important from the liability standpoint they do that, as well as from a social obligation standpoint. I don’t know any landlord who isn’t.”Momentary reprieveSeveral landlords have reported a temporary decline in day-to-day costs, as commercial tenants stop using utilities and residents skip repair requests.“We still have to maintain essential services — boilers, hot water, garbage — you don’t want rats coming in,” said Goldstein. “But we’re getting a lot less calls for repairs. And when we do, we ask if it’s essential — and if it’s not an emergency, they say, ‘We’ll wait.’’’Another principal at a New York City multifamily firm said there has been a “noticeable drop-off in repair requests, because people just want to stay home, or don’t want people in their apartments.”Landlords with commercial tenants are also seeing a drop in utility costs as businesses clear out. Bars and restaurants were closed to drinkers and diners Monday night and schools have shuttered. Cuomo mandated Thursday that non-essential businesses have no more than 25 percent of employees report to work. And the governor warned of more restrictions if the virus keeps spreading.Goldstein said half of the employees in his complexes were already furloughed in response to earlier guidance from Cuomo. Other workers are staying home out of fear.“We don’t know if a worker has coronavirus, we don’t know if the tenant has it,” said Goldstein.“We definitely don’t want [workers] to give it to a tenant who has kids.”Write to Georgia Kromrei at [email protected] This content is for subscribers only.Subscribe Nowlast_img read more

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Call a spade a spade

first_imgI have been following your various articles regarding Sections 19 and 22 of the Transport Act and getting a little frustrated.I believe the majority of small coach companies like myself, and possibly the bigger ones, would like to know the exact rules and regulations of these two sections in the act.But I would like to know in laymen terms:Who can do what under Section 19Who can do what under Section 22Can money be taken under any of the above if for non-profit or for profit?My company has been operating since 1911. When rules and regulation came in, O-Licences etc. my father followed all legal regulations. I just remember having to have local excursion licences from West Yorkshire Road Car Company to run day excursions. I am sure that many small operators throughout this country are very much the same. And for those who know me, I call a spade a spade.I was pleased to hear a Traffic Commissioner stated that if money is changing hands then an O-Licence is required.Now everything is being “discussed” and the latest is London is getting worried about Section 19s operating tendered contracts.Someone – and I don’t care who – needs to get a grip, act tough, and get it sorted.If you take money – for profit or non-profit you need an O-Licence with everything that goes with it. No more hiding under this canopy of Sections 19 and 22.Andrew Howick,Hargreaves Coaches, Skiptonlast_img read more

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Web of care

first_imgLake Peligre fills the valley floor, its dark blue waters a relief to the eye after hours winding through central Haiti’s hot, treeless hills on the dusty, potholed road that passes for National Route 3. Fishermen in traditional dugout canoes paddle across the lake’s surface, a placid scene viewed from Route 3’s perch high on one side of the valley’s steep walls. The lake is screened from the road by a row of tiny, two-room shacks, their occupants sitting outside, watching as passing traffic dodges pedestrians, dogs, and livestock. Peaceful today, the lake’s look is deceiving. Its creation in the 1950s led to decades of misery for the farming families that once made their living on the valley floor. But it has also led to a revolution in health care for the world’s poor in places as far flung as Peruvian shantytowns, remote Lesotho mountain communities, and Russian prison cells. Threads connect these far-flung places to an Episcopal priest who saw his church drowned along with his flock’s farms and to an idealistic Harvard Medical School student who stumbled onto the displaced farmers’ shacks in the nearby hills at a place called Cange. They lead in a broadening web to other idealistic students, to professors and global bureaucrats. They lead to the halls of power, to the World Health Organization, to Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital, the Harvard School of Public Health, Harvard Medical School, and to a rapidly globalizing nonprofit called Partners In Health. The threads eventually lead back to the poor, lying today in clinics in some of the world’s most inaccessible places, where a bedside physician wields a thermometer or stethoscope or syringe, or just kneels and watches. The Episcopal priest is Father Fritz Lafontant, today in his 80s and happy to tell the story of how in 1983 he met an idealistic student named Paul Farmer, who in turn met two other young idealists named Jim Yong Kim and Ophelia Dahl. Together, they began work among the Haitian poor that today has the world sitting up and taking notice. Farmer is the Maude and Lillian Presley Professor of Social Medicine at Harvard Medical School (HMS). Kim is professor of social medicine at HMS and Francois-Xavier Bagnoud Professor of Health and Human Rights at the Harvard School of Public Health (HSPH). Dahl is the president of Partners In Health (PIH). The organization, a private nonprofit, attests to its close ties to Harvard, listing as its “partners” Harvard Medical School’s Department of Social Medicine, the Harvard School of Public Health’s Francois-Xavier Bagnoud Center for Health and Human Rights, and the Division of Social Medicine and Health Inequalities at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital. Its partners also include affiliated organizations and ministries of health in countries where it operates: Haiti, Peru, Lesotho, Rwanda, Malawi, Russia, the United States, Guatemala, and Mexico. In addition, whether as patients, community health workers, nurses, drivers, technicians, doctors, or top Partners In Health administrators, the people of those nations are active participants in improving their homelands’ health situation. Fernet Leandre, director of HIV and TB for Partners In Health’s Haitian partner organization, Zanmi Lasante, worked at government-run clinics in his Haitian homeland as a social service resident before coming to Zanmi Lasante in 1996. During that time, which he called “deeply painful,” he was routinely frustrated by a lack of the drugs and equipment needed to help patients. At Zanmi Lasante, he said, he has the tools to do his job. “I couldn’t really provide any care,” Leandre said. “When I came to Cange, it was exactly what I was waiting for. It was like a dream come true for a young physician like me.” When Farmer first arrived at Cange in 1983 he found an impoverished community with no health facility. People lived in extreme poverty and suffered from a variety of ailments. They had little food and no clean water. “The families here were in terrible, terrible shape. The land was no good, they had no houses, no water,” Lafontant said. In the years since, the hospital at Cange has become a major medical center whose effectiveness and story of transformation prompted one prominent international health official to say that for an infectious disease doctor, a visit to Cange is similar to that of a pilgrim to a sacred site. On arrival at Cange, after hours traversing rutted, potholed dirt roads, one pulls through high green gates into a lower dirt parking lot and a welcoming sign: “Bienvenue au Complex Socio-Educatif de Cange.” The main buildings are above you and away to the left, wrapping around the small, steep hill on which the campus sits. Though a warehouse and a school border the parking lot, most of the buildings, including the main hospital, are hidden by the terrain and the thick trees that cover the site. One of Farmer’s – and Partners In Health’s – beliefs is that creating a beautiful, restful place is as important for the sick poor as it is for the sick rich. Everywhere Partners In Health establishes itself, tree plantings and flower beds follow. David Walton, an instructor in medicine at Harvard Medical School, infectious disease specialist at Brigham and Women’s Hospital, and longtime physician with Partners In Health, said creating a beautiful campus requires some effort, though not much cost. Expending the effort shows respect for their patients and gives them dignity despite the poverty in which many live their daily lives. The result is that Cange seems to the first-time visitor as much botanical garden as hospital. The towering trees are particularly noticeable, given the deforested hillsides one has to traverse along Route 3 to get there. If one climbs the fieldstone-walled road winding up the hillside, one quickly arrives at a small pond full of colorful fish. The spot, shaded by the trees overhead, is peaceful and a common resting place for newly arrived patients nervously waiting to see the doctor. The hospital itself provides a full range of services, with operating rooms, an emergency room, separate maternity and tuberculosis wards, and dental and eye clinics. It serves as the referral hospital for a network of nine health clinics run in partnership with the Haiti government that reach across Haiti’s Central Department, one of the poorest regions of one of the world’s poorest countries. It also serves as the flagship for Partners In Health’s operations around the world, a hopeful example of the changes that 20 years of unwavering commitment and toil can bring. Joia Mukherjee, assistant professor of medicine at Harvard Medical School and Partners In Health’s medical director, said she once brought a group of residents from Brigham and Women’s Hospital to the area. The group walked six hours to visit a community that had never been served by doctors. They saw the starvation and extreme poverty in which the local people lived and wound up vaccinating 300 and seeing another 700 with various ailments. The next day, she said, they came to Cange to attend mass at Father Lafontant’s Episcopal Church. “I brought the residents here and they just started weeping,” Mukherjee said, “because they saw what 20 years of engagement can do.” Though it got its start in Haiti, Partners In Health’s work expands beyond that island nation. Since the mid-1990s, the organization has worked in the United States, running programs based on the Haitian model of community-based care for the sickest and most marginalized HIV patients in Boston. At about the same time, it tackled a job that international health experts said was hopeless: treating multi-drug-resistant tuberculosis among Peru’s urban poor. Later that decade, Zanmi Lasante in Haiti turned to treatment of those infected with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. The prevailing wisdom at the time was that AIDS couldn’t be treated in poor countries because the drugs were too expensive and too complicated to administer without robust health care systems like those typically seen in the industrialized world. But with a relentless belief that people will stop saying “It can’t be done” if someone proves that it can, Farmer, Kim, and the small army of people following their lead have again and again shown that decent health care can be brought to the world’s poor. “We push the limits of the possible, set it up, and put it in place,” Kim said. “We don’t have the argument [about whether it’s possible] until we’ve tried it. And once we’ve tried it, the argument changes.” Partners In Health operates in the nations it serves through a network of clinics and an army of community health workers who extend the clinics’ reach into the countryside. Together, they offer a comprehensive continuum of care that has not only been hailed for its effectiveness and replicated in nine countries, but which is forming the foundation for a new academic discipline in global health delivery at Harvard, spearheaded by Kim. The model treats not only the medical conditions patients present, but also attacks their underlying causes – whose roots often lie in poverty. Farmer said it’s been described as a “whatever it takes” approach, a description of which he approves. The can-do approach means taking steps that would be foreign to physicians in major urban hospitals. It means hours-long treks over mountain pathways to check on a patient. It means not just giving a nourishing treatment for malnutrition, but planting the peanuts to make it, and roasting them yourself. It means not just advising HIV-positive mothers to use formula to feed their babies and to be sure they use clean water to mix the formula, but also casting large concrete containers to filter impurities from the water supply. It means being able to communicate with both a nation’s president and its poorest residents. It means missing meals, missing sleep, endless travel, and tireless dedication. That can-do approach is tested daily by the conditions in which the organization works. Along the road to the clinic at Boucan Carré in Haiti, for example, rainy season floods have led to the deaths of two women from complications of their pregnancies and destroyed a Land Rover crossing with supplies. Partners In Health is pressing the Haiti government to build a bridge to provide a safe crossing, but the amount appropriated is not enough for the job, leaving Partners In Health – which has already commissioned a study of bridge feasibility – searching for a solution. “It’s burdensome enough to know that you’re going to have to build the operating room,” Farmer said, discussing the situation’s frustrations. “You want to take care of people? You have to build the operating room and find the electricity and do the supply chain and make sure you have sutures and an autoclave to sterilize things. So all that work has to get done . and then you have to build a bridge?” Despite the organization’s whatever-it-takes flexibility, at its heart lies a unwavering belief: that people living in the Third World shouldn’t get second-class care. In other words, women needing a Caesarean section shouldn’t die on a riverbank simply because there’s no way across. The organization strives to provide care that is up to modern medical standards despite the challenges that come with working in places where communication, transportation, electricity, and even water are sometimes lacking. The patients know that and come flooding. At site after site, PIH physicians tell a similar story. When they arrive to take over operations of an existing clinic, it typically sees just a few patients a day. Meanwhile, in the surrounding countryside, the sick and dying suffer at home. They stay home because they can’t afford the fees charged to see a doctor or nurse, more fees for medical supplies, such as sutures to close a wound, and another round of fees for antibiotics and other medicines. To top it off, there may be no medicine to be had and no doctors to be seen. With clinic staffing unreliable, the patient could make the exhausting and painful journey there, only to be without care and far from home. Better to stay in bed, surrounded by loved ones. One of the first changes Partners In Health makes is reliability. Clinics are always open and there is always a doctor available. The clinics use modern inventory control techniques to ensure needed supplies and medicines are available. And, though they often charge a nominal fee to those who can afford it – 60 cents at the clinic in Lascahobas, Haiti – they don’t turn anyone away for lack of money. The patients respond. Traffic typically increases dramatically within a year, tenfold or more, as word spreads that reliable care is available. Physical expansion of the facility often follows. Jines Sophonie brought his 19-month-old son, Jean, to the clinic at Lascahobas in January after he fell into a cooking fire and suffered burns across much of his small body. Sophonie said they made the 30-minute ride on a motorcycle from distant Savonet. When asked why he made the trip to Lascahobas, Sophonie said simply, “There’s nowhere else.” Nearby sat 2-year-old Davelnor Mirales, whose mother carried him as she hiked three hours over Haiti’s hills to reach the small clinic. Mirales was suffering from kwashiorkor, a starvation-related condition characterized by a swollen stomach and legs, stunted growth, and skin and hair abnormalities. The doctors at Lascahobas started Davelnor on a diet of milk until his body could handle a more nutrient-packed food called Nourimanba, manufactured by Partners In Health, Haiti, from locally grown peanuts, milk powder, vitamins, and oil. Assistant Professor of Medicine Louise Ivers, who divides her time between her work in Haiti with Partners In Health and Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, said that the Nourimanba has produced dramatic results compared with more traditional treatments for malnutrition, reducing swelling from kwashiorkor in as little as a week. The most recent phase in Partners In Health’s history has been one of expansion. In 2002, the organization received a large grant from the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria that fueled dramatic expansion of its HIV program in Haiti. Three years later, a request from the government of Rwanda and funding from the Clinton Foundation’s HIV/AIDS Initiative put Partners In Health on the front lines of the global AIDS epidemic, fighting the disease where the epidemic burns hottest: sub-Saharan Africa. Invitations from other governments followed. The organization and its suite of wraparound services aim to improve treatment and prevention of infection with HIV, the virus that causes AIDS. Partners In Health’s “four pillars” of AIDS care are prevention and treatment of HIV itself in the context of improved primary health care, which encourages people to visit clinics and agree to be tested for HIV; detection and treatment of tuberculosis – since tuberculosis is often associated with AIDS and is the leading cause of death among people infected by HIV; detection and treatment of sexually transmitted infections; and an emphasis on improving women’s health. Women’s health is an important component of HIV/TB care because it allows early diagnosis of HIV in newborns, allows doctors to monitor mother-infant transmission, and is an important focus in nations where childbirth remains a leading cause of death. A housing program for needy families living with AIDS and an emphasis on food security provide important additional support. Since antiretroviral drugs need to be taken daily, a critical part of Partners In Health’s program lies in a corps of community health workers who conduct daily rounds and visit patients in their homes. During these visits, the workers not only ensure the patients take their medicines, they also monitor their general condition, their living situation, and the health of others in the household, providing an important route for early intervention. Cenatus-Pierre Gaston, who discovered he was infected with HIV more than three years ago after seeking treatment for tuberculosis, said Partners In Health’s Haitian arm, Zanmi Lasante, saved his life, allowing him to marry and to work to help others stricken with the disease. “I gathered my courage and said, ‘My life isn’t over,’” Gaston said. “If Zanmi Lasante wasn’t there, these bones wouldn’t be here anymore. I’d already be dead for three years and six months.” Because of the nature of HIV treatment, Kim said work on the disease provides an opportunity to transform health care around the globe. An incurable ailment that can be controlled with an ongoing regimen of powerful drugs, HIV can only be effectively treated through established health care systems. In nations that have none, Partners In Health is building them as it goes, one clinic at a time. “We’ve always had just outrageously huge ambitions to treat the poor,” Kim said. “The most common thing in the world is to set low goals for people who are powerless.”last_img read more

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Tyler Reddick joins Richard Childress Racing for 2019 Xfinity Series season

first_imgWELCOME, N.C. – Richard Childress Racing will welcome current championship contender Tyler Reddick to its 2019 NASCAR Xfinity Series program. The Corning, California native is a two-time winner in the series and holds the closest margin of victory (0.0004 seconds) in NASCAR history with his 2018 win at Daytona International Speedway.Reddick, who began racing at age four, built his skills on the dirt track and competed in everything from mini sprints and midget cars to dirt late models and sprint cars. The 22-year-old driver made the jump to asphalt racing in 2012, during which he competed in the ARCA Racing Series and won his debut race in the NASAR K&N Pro Series East at Rockingham Speedway.RELATED: Key players in NASCAR’s Silly SeasonFrom 2013 through 2016, Reddick competed in the NASCAR Camping World Truck Series. During his tenure in the series, he secured three wins, three pole awards, 25 top-five and 40 top-10 finishes. Reddick made the jump to the Xfinity Series in 2017, running a partial schedule that year before returning for a full season in 2018. He has made trips to Victory Lane during both of his Xfinity Series seasons and is currently third in the Xfinity Series Playoff Standings.“Tyler has had a lot of success so far in his racing career, and we intend on continuing that success with him in 2019,” said Richard Childress, Chairman and CEO of RCR. “I’m confident that he will do a great job representing RCR on and off the track. Tyler is a talented driver who’s not afraid to go after wins, and I look forward to seeing that drive to win on the track with us next season.”“I’m really looking forward to joining RCR in 2019,” said Reddick. “RCR has had a stout Xfinity program throughout the years with a lot of talented team members and resources available to its drivers. I want to thank JR Motorsports for what they’ve done this past year to help me advance my career and skills behind the wheel. Ultimately, my goal is to race on Sundays and I feel that by joining RCR, I can continue to race up front in the Xfinity Series while also learning from one of the top Cup programs in the garage.”Additional information on Reddick’s crew chief, sponsorship and car number will be announced at a later date.For additional information on today’s announcement, and all that’s happening at RCR, please visit rcrracing.com.last_img read more

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Chicago Ambulance Struck by Gunfire

first_imgA bullet shattered the window of an ambulance as paramedics were working on a patient Sunday evening in the West Englewood neighborhood.The ambulance, operated by the Chicago Fire Department, was shot about 5:40 p.m. in the 5600 block of South Bishop, according to fire department spokesman Will Knight.The bullet shattered the driver’s-side window, and a large caliber slug was found in the cab portion of the ambulance, the statement said. Two paramedics were treating a patient in the back at the time of the shooting, the statement said. No one was shot.Chicago Police said they are investigating.last_img

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