The Health News – 15 March 2017

Overview:
• Phoebe Pacheco is being investigated for allegedly working as an unregistered doctor for three years at the Werribee Cosmetic Clinic in Melbourne. Working as a medical practitioner without being registered carry fines of up to $30,000.

• The International League Against Epilepsy classification system  has been given an overhaul, to allow patients and doctors to be better informed on the causes and risks of the disease, and its associations with other conditions.

• House Bill 4260 was submitted by Jessica Farrar, a Democratic member of the Texas House of Representatives, and states that masturbation “will be considered an act against an unborn child” which would attract a $100 fine.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the  15th of March 2017. Read by Rebecca Foster. Health News

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-03-14/woman-who-allegedly-worked-as-a-doctor-under-investigation/8353296

A Melbourne woman is being investigated for allegedly working as an unregistered doctor for three years at a cosmetic clinic in the city’s outer south-west.

Phoebe Pacheco worked at the Werribee Cosmetic Clinic from January 2013 to October 2016, before she was stopped by the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA).

The AHPRA became aware she may have been practicing despite being unregistered in September 2016 and carried out a warrant at the clinic in October.

Letters have been written by AHPRA to 145 patients advising them of the situation.

… those patients and others who may have been treated by Ms Pacheco should see a registered medical practitioner as a precaution.

Convictions for working as medical practitioner without being registered carry fines of up to $30,000.

The investigation followed on the heels of revelations about a man who allegedly pretended to be a doctor in hospitals in New South Wales for more than a decade.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-03-14/epilepsy-classification-overhaul-could-improve-lives-expert-says/8351864

The 30-year-old global classification system for epilepsy has been given an overhaul, and those within the community say it will improve the lives of millions of people by helping with earlier diagnosis.

The International League Against Epilepsy classification updates include new seizure types that previously were not recognised.

They have also updated information to allow patients and doctors to be better informed on the causes and risks of the disease, and its associations with other conditions.

Professor Ingrid Scheffer, from the University of Melbourne and Austin Health, where she specialises in Dravet syndrome, a rare type of epilepsy, said the changes would have an impact worldwide.

“There are a whole lot of new seizure types — what type of epilepsy and then which epilepsy syndrome the patient has.

“But just as importantly, it looks at causes, which we haven’t done before.

“And these causes can be where the structure of a brain has an abnormality, or maybe there is a gene or infectious cause, and this in turn affects treatment.”

Professor Scheffer said up to 20 new seizure types had been recognised, and a more definitive diagnosis would provide patients with better treatment options.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-03-14/satirical-law-proposes-men-be-fined-for-masturbating/8353194

A Texas politician has proposed a bill which would fine men $100 for masturbating in a bid to flip the switch on the struggles women face in accessing reproductive healthcare — particularly regarding abortion — by targeting men.

House Bill 4260 was submitted by Jessica Farrar, a Democratic member of the Texas House of Representatives, and states that masturbation “will be considered an act against an unborn child”.

As per the bill, “emissions outside of a woman’s vagina, or created outside of a health or medical facility” would attract a $100 fine for “failing to preserve the sanctity of life”.

But HB 4260 bill is not intended to pass — Ms Farrar said it was “satirical” and intended to make a point.

“What I would like to see is this make people stop and think,” [she said].

HB 4260 would require men to receive a booklet titled A Man’s Right to Know, which mirrors the language of A Woman’s Right to Know, an information booklet doctors in Texas are required to give to women seeking an abortion.

The booklet has long been criticised as outdated and biased, with one section linking abortions to breast cancer despite the scientific community refuting the claim.

The bill would also require men to submit to rectal exams and sonograms when seeking vasectomies, Viagra prescriptions or colonoscopies, and give doctors the right “to invoke their personal, moralistic or religious beliefs in refusing to perform an elective vasectomy or prescribe Viagra”.

The bill was blasted by Tony Tinderholt, a Republican member of the Texas House of Representatives who recently put forward a bill proposing abortion providers and women who receive abortions be charged with murder.

Mr Tinderholt said he was “embarrassed” for Ms Farrar.