The Health News United Kingdom October 18 2017

  • The children’s helpline Childline conducted more than 60 counselling sessions on suicide every day last year with children as young as 10 reporting suicidal thoughts. In 2016-17, Childline counsellors delivered 22,456 sessions about suicide, up from 19,481 the previous year. Of those, 2,061 counselling sessions involved a young person who was considered to be actively suicidal, a 9% increase on the previous year..
  • Figures reveal that home births have fallen to their lowest level in 16 years as health leaders say cuts to midwife numbers are restricting choice for parents. In 2015, 2.3% of babies were born at home and in 2016 it reduced slightly to 2.1%. There is currently a shortage of at least 3,500 midwives, according to the Royal College of Midwives.
  • Hundreds of people who received allegedly faulty hip replacements are suing the manufacturer at the High Court. The hearing is thought to be one of the largest product liability group actions ever heard in the UK. DePuy denies that its metal-on-metal implants were defective and caused some patients to need more surgery than was necessary.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the 18th of  October 2017. Read by Tabetha Moreto. Health News

https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/oct/17/more-than-60-children-a-day-calling-childline-with-suicidal-thoughts

A children’s helpline conducted more than sixty counselling sessions on suicide every day last year with children as young as ten reporting suicidal thoughts, according to the
National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children charity. The figures from Childline represent a fifteen percent increase on the previous year. The NSPCC pointed to widespread concern about the lengthy waiting times young people face before accessing mental health services, but said the statistics also suggested a greater willingness on the part of young people to seek help. One fourteen-year-old girl told a counsellor: “I want to end it tonight. I’ve written a suicide note and have everything ready.” More than two thousand young people who called the helpline were considered “actively suicidal”, having taken initial steps to end their own lives, including writing a note, giving away meaningful items, or planning their death.
The youngest child actively planning suicide was twelve.

NSPCC chief executive Peter Wanless said: “We have never seen figures like these before and they are a blunt wake-up call.” Some young callers had already sought professional support, and asked Childline counsellors to act on their behalf to get help more quickly.
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In two thousand sixteen and two thousand seventeen, Childline counsellors delivered twenty two thousand four hundred fifty six sessions about suicide, up from nineteen thousand four hundred eighty one the previous year. Of those, two thousand sixty one counselling sessions involved a young person who was considered to be actively suicidal, a nine percent increase on the previous year. According to the NSPCC suicide is the third most common reason for girls to contact Childline, and the fifth most common for boys. Mental health issues, family relationships, and self-harm were other top three issues mentioned in suicide counselling sessions.

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/10/16/midwife-shortage-blamed-lowest-proportion-home-births-16-years/

Figures reveal that home births have fallen to their lowest level in sixteen years as health leaders say cuts to midwife numbers are restricting choice for parents. Data from the Office for National Statistics show that just two point one percent of mothers gave birth at home in two thousand sixteen, despite NHS efforts to encourage the practice. When records began in the nineteen sixties, almost a third of babies were born at home. But the figure has drastically fallen since then, dipping to the lowest levels in the nineteen eighties when about one in every one hundred babies was born at home.

Following the dip, the figure rose slightly over time and by two thousand eight, two point eight percent of babies were born at home. In two thousand fifteen, two point three percent of babies were born at home and in two thousand sixteen it reduced slightly to two point one percent.

The last time the figure was at this level was in two thousand one. There is currently a shortage of at least three thousand five hundred midwives, according to the Royal College of Midwives. The college’s Director of Midwifery, Louise Silverton, said: “We know many women are being denied this choice because of staffing shortages and resource issues, and this is not good enough.The new ONS birth statistics show that women aged thirty five to thirty nine were most likely to give birth at home while women aged under twenty were least likely. The figures also show regional differences – women in Wales were more likely to have a home birth compared with women in England.

http://www.bbc.com/news/health-41634354

Hundreds of people who received allegedly faulty hip replacements are suing the manufacturer at the High Court. The hearing is thought to be one of the largest product liability group actions ever heard in the UK. DePuy denies that its metal-on-metal implants were defective and caused some patients to need more surgery than was necessary. Sales of the Pinnacle Ultamet device were discontinued in August two thousand thirteen. Lawyers claim their clients were affected by the release of metal particles from the implants, which can damage the surrounding tissues and cause symptoms such as pain and swelling. Some three hundred twelve people who were fitted with the Pinnacle Ultamet hip joint say they needed remedial surgery after it failed prematurely. During the first day of the hearing, the court was told that after ten years the metal joint involved had a failure rate up to six times higher than alternatives made from other materials.

Metal-on-metal implants replace the hip joint with a metal ball and cup. Hundreds more metal-on-metal claims against a number of other manufacturers are said to be on hold pending the outcome of the trial, which is expected to last until the end of January.
DePuy said: “We have no greater responsibility than to the patients who use our products. The device is backed by a strong record of clinical data showing reduced pain and restored mobility for patients suffering from chronic hip pain. We are committed to the long-term defence of the allegations in this litigation.” Earlier this year, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency said every patient with a metal-on-metal prosthetic hip should have regular check-ups to spot any complications. The watchdog had previously recommended that only patients with particular types of implant, or troublesome symptoms, undergo tests.

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About fifty six thousand UK patients have had a metal-on-metal hip device implanted.

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