The Health News Australia April 5 2018

  • Emergency departments across NSW will be encouraged to provide separate waiting rooms for Aboriginal patients under a new state government policy. The Daily Telegraph reported on Tuesday that the mandatory policy will call for emergency departments to provide a “culturally appropriate space” after research found Aboriginal people were at least one-and-a-half times more likely to leave hospitals before treatment.
  • A morbidly obese NSW woman who died after undergoing gastric balloon surgery wanted to make sure she was around to see her grandchildren grow up, according to the woman’s son. Margaret “Margot” Pegum, 68, had procedures done in April and June 2015 to help her to lose weight but subsequently began vomiting and had to have emergency surgery, with Sydney doctors discovering a 5-centimetre hole in her stomach wall.
  • A new study shows that about 140 Australian nursing-home residents took their own lives between 2000 and 2013. Published in the International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, the study is the first to examine the number and patterns of suicide in Australia’s nursing homes, and the largest such investigation in the world. It’s been found nearly 70% of those who took their own life were male, 66% had a diagnosis of depression and nearly 80% were experiencing one or more major life stresses, such as health deterioration.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the 5th of April 2018. Read by Tabetha Moreto.

https://healthtimes.com.au/hub/accident-and-emergency/1/news/aap/a-new-policy-encouraging-nsw-hospitals-to-provide-designated-waiting-rooms-for-aboriginal-patients/3269/

Emergency departments across New South Wales will be encouraged to provide separate waiting rooms for Aboriginal patients under a new state government policy. The Daily Telegraph reported on Tuesday that the mandatory policy will call for emergency departments to provide a “culturally appropriate space” after research found Aboriginal people were at least one-and-a-half times more likely to leave hospitals before treatment.

A trial on the mid north coast showed a fifty percent reduction in the number of Aboriginal patients leaving early from emergency departments, the report said. Aboriginal artwork can be hung on those specially designated walls as a link to the culture and communities, the policy suggests. Mister Hazzard says many hospitals have already determined they want to introduce a culturally appropriate space and the policy isn’t compulsory. He told TwoGB on Tuesday: “It isn’t mandatory in the sense they’ve got to do it, it’s mandatory in the sense you’ve got to think about what is culturally appropriate (and) what might help the local community,”

Mister Hazzard added that the policy also brings NSW into line with national standards.

https://www.smh.com.au/national/nsw/harrowing-doctors-discovered-5cm-hole-in-woman-s-stomach-wall-in-emergency-surgery-20180403-p4z7kg.html

A morbidly obese New South Wales woman who died after undergoing gastric balloon surgery wanted to make sure she was around to see her grandchildren grow up, according to the woman’s son. Margaret “Margot” Pegum, sixty eight, had procedures done in April and June two thousand fifteen to help her to lose weight but subsequently began vomiting and had to have emergency surgery, with Sydney doctors discovering a five-centimetre hole in her stomach wall.

The son of a woman who died after undergoing gastric balloon surgery says “well-intentioned” doctors and surgeons are accountable to only themselves. By July five doctors found Ms Pegum had multiple organ failure and sepsis. She was placed in palliative care before dying. Speaking outside Glebe Coroner’s Court on Tuesday, James Pegum said his mother elected to have what she considered a safer and less invasive surgery, so she’d be able to help raise grandkids.
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Counsel assisting, Jason Downing, said following the initial operation in April two thousand fifteen Miss Pegum, who had weighed about one hundred nine kilograms, became frustrated that she still felt hungry. The adjustable gastric balloon was further inflated in another procedure on June twenty two but Ms Pegum was soon repeatedly vomiting and dry retching. She became so ill with abdominal cramping that her son took her to hospital. Margot Pegum underwent emergency removal surgery at Prince of Wales Hospital where the stomach tear was found. Her condition deteriorated and by July five she had gangrene in her colon and her bowel was beyond repair. She died one day later.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-03-06/too-many-australians-living-in-nursing-homes-take-their-own-live/9517084

A new study shows that about one hundred forty Australian nursing-home residents took their own lives between two thousand and two thousand thirteen. Published in the International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, the study is the first to examine the number and patterns of suicide in Australia’s nursing homes, and the largest such investigation in the world. It’s been found nearly seventy percent of those who took their own life were male, sixty six percent had a diagnosis of depression and nearly eighty percent were experiencing one or more major life stresses, such as health deterioration. About forty three percent were experiencing isolation and loneliness, and nearly thirty percent had trouble adjusting to life in a nursing home.
…..
The findings highlight that older men with depression entering aged care are at heightened risk of suicide and our aged-care system isn’t equipped to provide the support to protect them. There are more than one hundred seventy thousand older adults living in two thousand seven hundred nursing homes across Australia.

This equates to about six percent of people aged sixty five and older, and represents one of society’s most vulnerable populations who depend on others for care. Suicide is one of the leading causes of death in many countries for people aged between fifteen and twenty nine, so many assume it’s mainly a problem in younger people. But adults over sixty five years (particularly males) have one of the highest suicide rates of all age groups in many countries around the world.

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