The Health News – 9 January 2017

Overview:
• Urgent action is needed to ensure there is adequate support for people who have a mental illness and are not eligible for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS). Connie Digolis from the Mental Health Council of Tasmania said work was currently underway to find out exactly how many people would not be covered by the NDIS.

• A new research shows that we may have been underestimating goosebumps. Professor Rod Sinclair, a dermatologist at the University of Melbourne, explained that the “goosebump muscle” could hold the key for skin cancer, baldness and burns treatment.

• Federal Health Minister Sussan Ley has agreed to partly pay back the cost of four trips to the Gold Coast where she and her partner own two properties. The ABC has analysed three years’ worth of the minister’s travel reports and found she travelled to the Gold Coast 20 times.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the  9th of January 2017. Read by Rebecca Foster. Health News

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-01-07/mental-health-patients-may-slip-through-ndis-cracks/8167056

Urgent action is needed to ensure there is adequate support for people who have a mental illness and are not eligible for the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS), mental health service providers say.

Money from a number of federal programs is being rolled into the NDIS but not everyone currently receiving that support will be able to access the scheme.

Connie Digolis from the Mental Health Council of Tasmania said work was currently underway to find out exactly how many people would not be covered by the NDIS.

[She] said any gap could put pressure on the state’s health system.

The Mental Health Council is organising a meeting with the Tasmanian Government to discuss the issue.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-01-06/goosebumps-may-hold-key-for-skin-cancer-baldness-burns-treatment/8164076

It has long been thought that goosebumps were just evolutionary residue from the caveman era of fight or flight responses or trying to beat the cold.

But new research shows that we may have been underestimating the role of the humble goosebump.

Professor Rod Sinclair, dermatologist at the University of Melbourne, explained he had been “following a hunch” that goosebumps were not just an evolutionary by-product.

It turns out that Professor Sinclair’s hunch may have been on track, as his new research shows the “goosebump muscle” could hold the key for skin cancer, baldness and burns treatment.

What Professor Sinclair and his team have recently discovered about the goosebump muscle is the vital function it performs in maintaining hair follicle growth and growth of skin.

It has long been understood that in order for healing and cell regeneration to occur a stem cell niche is required.

Professor Sinclair has discovered that the goosebump muscle maintains this vital stem cell niche.

He said the discovery of the goosebump muscle and how it related to stem cells could help to stop the growth of skin cancer cells.

Professor Sinclair said the key could be in discovering why the goosebump muscle was being destroyed.

For burns victims, he said he believed that if hair was transplanted into the burns scar it would help to regenerate the goosebump muscle.

http://www.abc.net.au/news/2017-01-08/sussan-ley-to-pay-back-cost-of-taxpayer-funded-gold-coast-trips/8168718

Federal Health Minister Sussan Ley has agreed to partly pay back the cost of four trips to the Gold Coast where she and her partner own two properties.

There are unanswered questions about 14 other taxpayer-funded trips identified by the ABC, including two New Year’s Eve celebrations on the tourist strip.

During one trip in 2015, Ms Ley purchased an almost-$800,000 apartment, prompting the Opposition to call for her resignation.

She purchased the property while travelling to Queensland on ministerial business, accompanied by her partner.

The full cost of their trip was $3,125 — paid for by taxpayers.

In a statement, Ms Ley apologised for the “error of judgement” and said it did “not meet the high standards” set by the Prime Minister.

“While attending an auction was not the reason for my visit to Queensland or the Gold Coast, I completely understand this changed the context of the travel undertaken,” she said.

Ms Ley will also pay back two other accommodation claims on the Gold Coast and a flight.

She said she had asked the Department of Finance to review all of her ministerial travel to the Gold Coast.

The ABC has analysed three years’ worth of the minister’s travel reports and found she travelled to the Gold Coast 20 times.

As the sun set on the final days of 2013, Ms Ley charged taxpayers $655 for her flight to the tourist strip for New Year’s Eve.

A year later, after another Gold Coast New Year’s Eve, she charged for her and her partner’s flights back to Sydney.

The most expensive flight was a $12,365 charter flight taken in March 2015.