Researchers developing treatment for protective wear that kills viruses

‘Self-decontaminating’ medical gowns and masks could also be washed and reused, says U of A textile scientist

Researchers developing treatment for protective wear that kills virusesNew University of Alberta research aims to make medical gowns and masks even safer for front-line health-care workers. Using a one-year, $50,000 NSERC Alliance COVID-19 grant, textiles scientist Patricia Dolez is leading research on developing a textile treatment that would kill viruses – including COVID-19 – on contact. “We are developing something that will make these fabrics self-decontaminating,”…

Failure to use rapid tests in pandemic points to deeper problems

We still have time to act by approving and quickly producing rapid tests in Canada by the tens of millions

Failure to use rapid tests in pandemic points to deeper problemsBy John Adams and Kashif Pirzada Macdonald-Laurier Institute Canada’s ongoing failure to effectively control the spread of COVID-19 reflects increasing failures by governments to coordinate with one another and to respond quickly and effectively to new developments and scientific advances. This is abundantly clear in the self-harm inflicted by our original difficulties in sourcing of…

Pandemic exposes weaknesses of government intervention

The response of governments was heavy-handed, lead-footed, wrong-headed and inept

Pandemic exposes weaknesses of government intervention2020 forever will be associated with the coronavirus sweeping Canada and the world. However, its impact on the economy was much greater than on our health. Far fewer people were stricken by the virus than the initial apocalyptic warnings from health care experts, while its impact on incomes, jobs and government deficits was larger and…

COVID-19 overreaction has pushed us to the tipping point

Our debt is rising and our population growth is slowing. The result will be a massive fiscal burden on taxpayers in decades to come

COVID-19 overreaction has pushed us to the tipping pointCaught between a rock and a hard place. This best sums up the position that Alberta’s United Conservative Party government found itself in as it announced new, stricter lockdown measures for Christmas. The government is attempting to bend the rising curve of COVID-19 infections. Premier Jason Kenney and his most trusted ministers lined up to…

Covid-19 pokes the final hole in leaky long-term care boat

We cannot blame COVID-19 alone for the current LTC crisis, writes Shawn Whatley

Covid-19 pokes the final hole in leaky long-term care boatNursing homes struggled long before the COVID-19 pandemic arrived in Canada. Now, during the second wave, many front-line clinicians say our long-term care (LTC) system has all but collapsed. In the pre-COVID era, patients waited a median of 159 days to get a bed in Ontario, with some areas at 263 days. Thus, it was…

Betting on the booming plant protein food market

Many consumers are revisiting their relationship with animal proteins, both at the meat counter and in the dairy products section

Betting on the booming plant protein food marketThink plant protein is just a passing fad? Think again. You likely noticed that the plant-based counter at your favourite grocery store is growing. There’s good reason: people are buying. Despite the COVID-19 pandemic and the chaos surrounding containment and vaccination rules, consumers are quietly enjoying products made from plant proteins and milk alternatives. According…

Weighing the risks of youth sports in a pandemic

Weighing the risks of youth sports in a pandemicWe’re in the midst of both a COVID-19 pandemic and a childhood physical inactivity epidemic. That creates a dilemma for young athletes and their parents: Is the risk of playing organized sports during the pandemic greater than the risk of the negative physical and mental impacts of not playing? Young people need to move their…

Thankfully 2020 is over, but we’re not out of the woods yet

There's that little matter of actually rolling out the vaccines on a much wider scale in Canada

Thankfully 2020 is over, but we’re not out of the woods yetSad to see 2020 go? You’re in the minority … of one. Everyone else was quite ecstatic to roll out the welcome mat for 2021. The biggest issue we faced in 2020 was obviously the coronavirus pandemic. More than 85 million people have tested positive for COVID-19 worldwide, leading to nearly 1.85 million deaths as…

Are you suffering compassion fatigue?

In the midst of the pandemic, a great deal of pressure has fallen on managers. Here are some tips to help deal with the increased stress

Are you suffering compassion fatigue?Lucy is a manager who oversees a large team of sales reps. Like many other organizations, hers quickly made the transition to work-from-home. It was a new experience for a team used to working from their downtown office. Lucy used to be able to monitor her team with regular walk-arounds and check-ins. She had a…

Many questions will linger post-pandemic

Many questions will linger post-pandemicPandemics have a way of changing the world. The Plague of Justinian hit the Mediterranean area in the 500s, not only killing millions but crucially weakening the Byzantine Empire and helping ruin its plans to reconquer western Europe from the barbarians. The Black Death of the 1300s wiped out over 100 million people in Europe…

In crisis, radicalism works against balance and progress

Far-left activists and politicians are recruiting and radicalizing in the same way far-right groups did back in the 2008 crash

In crisis, radicalism works against balance and progressCOVID-19 lockdown measures are opening the door to extremists, not just because people are spending more time on the internet at home, but because of the huge impact lockdowns had on the economy and employment. Much like the 2008 stock market crash, which facilitated a substantial rise in far-right extremism, lockdown measures impacted low-wage workers…

Feel out of control? Try naming your year

Being rooted and attentive to a guiding motto, principal or goal can keep us from being distracted

Feel out of control? Try naming your yearIt was icy and the pickup truck on the road in front of me started sliding out of control as it rounded a corner on our way back from the ski hill the other day. While others in the car with me were shouting distracting instructions, in my head I could hear my father’s voice…

The new pandemic-induced pet food economy

The pet economy represents tremendous growth potential for the food service industry. Pets are already influencing the market

The new pandemic-induced pet food economyAccording to a recent report by Narrative Research, 18 per cent of Canadians say they got a new pet since the start of the pandemic. That means more than 6.8 million pets were adopted since March. That can be added to the more than 16 million cats and dogs Canadians had in 2019, prior to…

Why can’t Trudeau grasp what ‘conflict of interest’ means?

If he can’t figure out that his family’s involvement with the WE Charity was a conflict of interest, then he really does have an ethical blind spot

Why can’t Trudeau grasp what ‘conflict of interest’ means?Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has been criticized for his seemingly cavalier attitude with respect to parliamentary procedure and taking ethical stands. The running joke has been that either he doesn’t know, doesn’t care or experiences things differently than others. Here’s yet another example and it’s one of the strangest to date. Trudeau, like many of…

Despite the alarmism, Covid-19 is not the Black Death

Instead of focusing on a problem concentrated in our long-term care facilities, politicians have closed vast swaths of our economy

Despite the alarmism, Covid-19 is not the Black DeathDespite the relentless media drum-banging around the alarmist COVID-19 narrative, this virus is not the Black Death. Official numbers have the Canadian death count so far just over 14,000, bad for sure, but not hugely off the yearly flu toll in Canada that kills 6,500 to 8,000 people.  The average age of those people who…
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