The Health News – 25 October 2016

Overview:
•  Beyond Blue chairman Jeff Kennett has called for the performance bonuses of top executives to be linked to the mental wellbeing of their staff. He said close to $11 billion was lost in productivity each year because staff were not happy at work.

• Crucial information about the death of a 10-year-old boy was lost after his test results were deleted, along with those of 151 other children, an inquest has heard. A spokesman for Nepean Hospital declined to comment on the case because it was part of an ongoing coronial inquest.

•  The latest figures from the Federal Health Department show travellers arriving from countries such as Fiji, Tonga and Mexico have brought Zika virus to Australia. With wet season approaching in the north, public health authorities are preparing for a heavy mosquito breeding season.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the  25th of October 2016. Read by Rebecca Foster. Health News

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-10-24/executive-bonuses-should-be-linked-to-staff’s-mental-health/7959022

Beyond Blue chairman Jeff Kennett has called for the performance bonuses of top executives to be linked to the mental wellbeing of their staff.

He also urged senior executives to undergo mental health checks with a psychologist every year.

The former premier of Victoria said close to $11 billion was lost in productivity each year because staff were not happy at work.

He said companies should introduce key performance indicators for chief executives and other staff to ensure mental health was maintained.

“The staff is terribly important and it is the staff who delivers the productivity and therefore hopefully the profit,” he said.

Mr Kennett said he had heard from senior executives who said they were under great pressure at work, but were not seeking help.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-10-24/hospital-deleted-10yo-boy’s-health-records,-inquest-hears/7959576

Crucial information about the death of a 10-year-old boy was lost after his test results were deleted, along with those of 151 other children, an inquest has heard.

Ezekiel Howard, known as Zeke, was cold and stiff when his mother Sonja tried to wake him in his bed at his family’s Colo Heights home one morning in September 2011.

Counsel Assisting Kirsten Edwards said the boy died of natural, unexplained causes.

“He was stiff and cold to touch and there was vomit around his pillow,” she said.

“Zeke’s death was sudden, unexpected and completely tragic.”

An inquest into Zeke’s death heard an autopsy was inconclusive, with results showing it could have been caused by sudden unexpected epilepsy or a sudden cardiac arrest.

The same post-mortem examination revealed Zeke had a small hole in his heart and his left heart ventricle had thickened to 14 millimetres.

Outside the inquest, Mrs Howard said she hoped the inquest would finally be able to answer the question of how her son died.

Zeke was given the all-clear when he had a series of tests, including heart scans, at Nepean Hospital in Sydney’s north-west four months before he died.

But the inquest heard his scans were lost when doctors inadvertently deleted the results of 151 children on two occasions in August 2011.

Giving evidence at the inquest on Monday, cardiologist Dr Stephen Cooper admitted he regularly deleted old scans.

But he said he and other doctors only deleted the scans because they believed the images had already been properly archived by the hospital.

But Mrs Howard said she struggled to understand how such a mistake could have been made.

Ms Edwards said the loss of those scans deprived the inquest of crucial information about Zeke’s death.

But she said there was no evidence to suggest the deletion of those results was malicious.

A spokesman for Nepean Hospital declined to comment on the case because it was part of an ongoing coronial inquest.

The inquest will resume on Wednesday.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2016-10-24/queensland-preparing-for-mosquito-season-as-zika-cases-rise/7960948

The number of cases of Zika virus detected in Australia is now up to 76, with seven cases diagnosed this year in Far North Queensland.

The latest figures from the Federal Health Department show travellers arriving from countries such as Fiji, Tonga and Mexico have brought the virus to Australia.

Only five travellers came from Brazil.

Health authorities have said there is still no recorded cases of the virus spreading between people inside Australia.

But with wet season approaching in the north, public health authorities are preparing for a heavy mosquito breeding season.

Dr Richard Gair, the director of the Tropical Public Health Services in Cairns, said conditions were right for an outbreak.