The Health News Australia April 25 2018

  • In a brightly lit lab in the outback town of Alice Springs, researchers have been inspecting vials of blood infected with an ancient virus that has lurked in Australia for thousands of years. It is called T-cell lymphotropic virus type 1 — or HTLV-1 — and Australia has the highest levels in the world. A distant relative of HIV, it is a blood-borne virus that can be sexually transmitted or passed from mother to child. The virus can lead to inflammation of the skin, eyes and lungs. HTLV-1 is most common in ancient cultures, with cases being found in southern Japan, South America and Africa.
  • Five research projects to improve the prevention and treatment of dementia among Indigenous people have received $14 million in funding from the National Health and Medical Research Council. The research is aimed at improving dementia detection and treatment, as well as prevention initiatives through clinical trials, analysis and community health approaches.
  • A study has found that the vast majority of Australians living with clinically severe obesity cannot access specialist healthcare in the public hospital system. According to the report published in the journal Clinical Obesity, Of the small number of specialist obesity services available, patient access is limited by strict entry criteria, prolonged wait times, lack of regional and rural services and out-of-pocket costs.  Many services that do exist have more than 300 patients on waiting lists.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the 25th of April 2018. Read by Tabetha Moreto.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2018-04-24/ancient-virus-cousin-of-hiv-affecting-indigenous-australians/9688718

In a brightly lit lab in the outback town of Alice Springs, researchers have been inspecting vials of blood infected with an ancient virus that has lurked in Australia for thousands of years. It is called T-cell lymphotropic virus type one — or HTLV-one — and Australia has the highest levels in the world. A distant relative of HIV, it is a blood-borne virus that can be sexually transmitted or passed from mother to child. The virus can lead to inflammation of the skin, eyes and lungs.
….
HTLV-one is most common in ancient cultures, with cases being found in southern Japan, South America and Africa. The virus is thought to have arrived in Australia from Indonesia thousands of years ago, but it continues to affect Aboriginal communities in the heart of the country. Researchers from the Baker Institute for Heart and Diabetes in Alice Springs estimated forty five percent of Indigenous adults in central Australia had HTLV-one.
….
In central Australia, researchers estimated, there were about five thousand people infected.
….
Infectious diseases expert Doctor Lloyd Einsiedel said HTLV-one was associated with inflammatory conditions, including bronchiectasis, a chronic infection of the airways, which appears at “phenomenal” rates in central Australia among Indigenous patients.
….
Researchers at the Baker Institute are collaborating with five remote Aboriginal communities — which can’t be named for privacy reasons — to get a better picture of how widespread it is in desert communities.
….
A spokesman for Indigenous Health Minister Ken Wyatt said the Federal Government was funding research that could lead to a new surveillance protocol and public health guidelines. He added:  “The Government has allocated six point one million dollars to the Central Australia Academic Health Science Centre, with its first priority project to be a study addressing HTLV-one.”

https://newsroom.unsw.edu.au/news/health/research-indigenous-dementia-receives-nhmrc-funding-boost

Five research projects to improve the prevention and treatment of dementia among Indigenous people have received fourteen million dollars in funding from the National Health and Medical Research Council. The research is aimed at improving dementia detection and treatment, as well as prevention initiatives through clinical trials, analysis and community health approaches.

Among the five recipients is Doctor Kylie Radford, a University of New South Wales Research Fellow based at Neuroscience Research Australia (NeuRA), who will receive more than three million dollars to lead the project ‘Our MOB (Mind Our Brain): Dementia prevention across the life course with Aboriginal Australians’. Doctor Radford said she was excited to see the recognition and support for groundbreaking research into dementia, with the combination of projects set to improve the lives of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living with brain disease.

Dementia is one of the biggest health issues facing Australians today, with research such as NeuRA’s Koori Growing Old Well Study showing that Indigenous people are disproportionately affected, with dementia prevalence three to five times higher than among non-Indigenous Australians across remote, regional and urban communities.
….
This project will provide fresh insight into a range of social and biomedical factors that could impact lifelong brain health and dementia onset, as well as ways to reduce the burden of cognitive decline.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/health/2018-04-24/hospitals-cannot-meet-demand-for-obesity-care-study/9689494

A study has found that the vast majority of Australians living with clinically severe obesity cannot access specialist healthcare in the public hospital system. According to the report published in the journal Clinical Obesity, of the small number of specialist obesity services available, patient access is limited by strict entry criteria, prolonged wait times, lack of regional and rural services and out-of-pocket costs.  Many services that do exist have more than three hundred patients on waiting lists. Lead researcher Evan Atlantis said patients with severe obesity often had multiple health conditions that cannot be met by a general practitioner alone.
….
It is estimated that one million Australian adults currently live with clinically severe obesity, which is defined as having a body mass index of thirty five or higher and a co-existing obesity-related medical condition.
….
People referred for specialist obesity services have often been unable to maintain prior weight loss, and may have complex conditions such as type two diabetes, cardiopulmonary diseases and depression. Specialised obesity services can include non-surgical care, weight loss medication and bariatric surgery. Using hospital and survey data from fifteen of the sixteen public hospitals offering specialist obesity services in Australia, the researchers found the options varied substantially between hospitals.
….
The researchers also identified gaps in clinic staff and services, as well as patient access to publicly-funded weight loss medication and surgery — approximately eighty eight percent of bariatric surgery is performed in private hospitals.

0 Comments

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.