The Health News Australia July 28 2017

Overview

  • The Heart of Australia cardiology clinic has received a one million dollar donation from a family who wished to remain anonymous. The Heart of Australia (Heart Bus) was founded by engineer turned cardiologist Rolph Gomes, who fitted out a 25 metre semi-trailer with the same specialised equipment found in a city cardiology practice. Each month the truck travels 8,000 kilometers as it visits 12 regional towns to provide endocrinology and some respiratory services.
  • The Federal Government has confirmed that China has temporarily banned beef imports from 6 Australian meatworks. Trade Minister Steven Ciobo aid the ban related to Chinese concern about labelling non-compliance. There is no suggestion health or food safety issues are involved.
  • The Commonwealth Bank has come under fire from disability advocates for its nationwide rollout of EFTPOS machines which they say are inaccessible to blind and vision-impaired people. Blind Citizens Australia is now calling on the bank to stop rolling out the machines, until the technology is able to be used by all people — with or without a disability.
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The Health News United Kingdom July 28 2017

Overview

  • The prospect of chlorine-washed chicken flooding into the UK as the price of a post-Brexit trade deal with the US has garnered a great deal of attention in recent days. Chlorine-washed chickens are symbolic of much wider concerns around animal welfare and environmental standards that could become a crucial negotiating point in any post-Brexit trade deal between the US and the UK.
  • Scientists have developed an experimental surgical glue inspired by the mucus secreted by slugs that could offer an alternative to sutures and staples for closing wounds. While some medical glues already exist, they often adhere weakly, are not particularly flexible and frequently cannot be used in very wet conditions.
  • Antibiotic resistance is a growing threat. It can build up after bacteria have become repeatedly exposed to antibiotics. The bacteria change or adapt so they are no longer affected by the antibiotic. This renders antibiotics ineffective against infections they were previously able to treat.
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The Health News USA July 28 2017

Overview

  • Scientists call for public health action as they highlight the dangers of the so-called overfat pandemic that is currently sweeping the United States. Obesity and excessive weight are public health concerns; over 70% of U.S. adults are either obese or overweight.
  • A version of the Obamacare repeal plan the Senate could pass this week may leave sixteen million more Americans uninsured over a decade, according to a Congressional Budget Office estimate requested by Senate Democrats.
  • Health officials announced that a man was diagnosed with Zika virus while living in Texas, the first infection transmitted from a local mosquito in the state this year.  More than 5,000 Zika cases were reported last year – with 224 cases reported to be local Zika transmission in the U.S., the CDC reported.
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The Health News United Kingdom July 27 2017

Overview

  • More than 86,000 NHS posts were vacant between January 2017 and March 2017, figures for England suggest. There are currently an estimated 1 million full time jobs across the NHS in England. Nurses and midwives accounted for the highest proportion of shortages, with 11,400 vacant posts in March 2017.
  • According to Mental Health Foundation 6,000 suicides in the UK and Ireland occur each year – with one death occurring every 2 hours. While there are many support groups, and options in terms of mental health services, people who are going through such a difficult time, experiencing such horrendous thoughts, need support from more than just people who are paid to be there.
  • Britain is to ban all new petrol and diesel cars and vans from two thousand and forty amid fears that rising levels of nitrogen oxide pose a major risk to public health. The government warned that the move, which will also take in hybrid vehicles, was needed because of the unnecessary and avoidable impact that poor air quality was having on people’s health.
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The Health News USA July 27 2017

Overview

  • New Jersey is set to become the third state to raise its smoking age to 21, after Republican Governor Chris Christie signed a bill Friday that hikes the minimum age to buy tobacco products from 19. New Jersey’s new law applies to e-cigarettes, as well as conventional tobacco products, and triggers fines against anyone who sells, gives or offers such products to someone younger than twenty one. It goes into effect November 1.
  • The Senate decisively rejected a Republican proposal to repeal-and-replace Obamacare, a sign of the chaos expected to envelop Capitol Hill as GOP leaders work to find a plan their conference can agree to.
  • Research on 202 former football players found evidence of a brain disease linked to repeated head blows in nearly all of them, from athletes in the National Football League, college and even high school. It’s the largest update on chronic traumatic encephalopathy, or CTE, a debilitating brain disease that can cause a range of symptoms including memory loss.
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The Health News Australia July 27 2017

Overview

  • Sperm concentrations in Western men have declined by more than fifty percent over the past 40 years, according to a major new study. Sperm count of men in Australia, North America and Europe declined more than 50pc in less than forty years. The 43,000 men tested included those with no concerns about their fertility and those with children. Western lifestyle and obesity could be to blame.
  • Between 1955 and 1976, Australian private vehicle ownership more than tripled. This period produced improved population mobility. Around 1,300 people still die, and tens of thousands more are injured, on Australian roads every year. It is unclear how autonomous vehicles will reshape the transportation sector. It is therefore unclear how this will affect the operational model of the multi-billion-dollar personal injury insurance industry that underpins it. But if schemes cannot adapt to the transition, the functionality of the whole transport system is at risk.
  • Thirty four year old Ian Thorpe is most decorated Olympian with 5 gold medals at the 2000 Sydney and 2004 Athens Game. He has developed a winning strategy to overcome his mental health issues. Thorpe is using his experience to help young Australians take charge of their mental wellbeing as the patron of the revamped ReachOut website.
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The Health News United Kingdom July 26 2017

Overview

  • Linkin Park frontman Chester Bennington died by suicide last week at the age of 41. The tragedy has shaken the music industry, which Help Musicians has stated is going through a ‘mental health crisis’. The charity has launched the Music Minds Matter campaign and are hoping to raise enough money for the first dedicated twenty four seven mental health service for those in the music industry.
  • There has been an increase across the UK of men and boys suffering from eating disorders, according to research by BBC Panorama. Eating disorders have the highest death rate of any mental health illness and are estimated to affect 1.6 million people in the UK, including approximately four hundred thousand 400,000 men and boys.
  • Almost 63,000 people in England will die over the next 5 years from liver problems linked to heavy drinking unless ministers tackle the scourge of cheap alcohol, doctors are warning. Analysis by Sheffield University’s influential Alcohol Research Group predicts that 32,475 of the deaths – the equivalent of 35 a day – will be the result of liver cancer and another twenty two thousand five hundred nineteen from alcoholic liver disease.
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The Health News USA July 26 2017

Overview

  • Amazon is showing interest in health care, and it’s making industry players ‘nervous,’ says investors. Amazon has also been selling medical supplies online for some time. CNBC reported in May that the company was on the hunt for a general manager to lead a new pharmacy unit.
  • Just a 5% decline in measles vaccination rates could triple the number of young children who get infected with the virus in the U.S., according to a study highlighting the risks of parents refusing to vaccinate their kids. If this vaccination rate dropped to 80%, it could result in 150 additional measles cases a year and cost government health programs $2.1 million dollars, not counting hospital bills, researchers estimate.
  • From 2005 to 2012, the rate of calls to poison control centers about dietary supplements increased by almost 50%, and most of the exposures were in children younger than 6 years old, according to a study published in the Journal of Medical Toxicology. Henry Spiller, study author and director of Central Ohio Poison Control, said parents still need to be extremely cautious about leaving these products within access of children.
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The Health News Australia July 26 2017

Overview

  • The UK’s viral This Girl Can campaign that encouraged women to become more active and told them “I jiggle therefore I am” is about to launch an Australian spin-off. The original 2015 video attracted more than 16 million views on YouTube and Facebook and featured women of all ages and sizes jogging, jumping, sweating and playing sport.
  • The idea that social media has negative impacts on our mental health is nothing new.  Interestingly, science has found a very weak link between the rise in the use of social media and mental health problems.
  • Female general practitioners outnumbered their male colleagues for the first time in Australia. Medical Board of Australia data confirmed women now outflanked men in general practice, with 973 more registered female GPs than males as of March 2017.
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The Health News United Kingdom July 25 2017

Overview

  • According to a survey, most women do not know how much they should be eating while pregnant. The National Charity Partnership found only a third of the expectant mothers questioned got the correct answer.
  • The parents of critically ill baby Charlie Gard have dropped their legal bid to send him to the United States for an experimental treatment after new medical tests showed that the window of opportunity to help him had closed.
  • Blood donation rules for sex workers and gay men are being relaxed in England and Scotland after improvements in the accuracy of testing procedures. Men who have sex with men can now give blood 3 months after their last sexual activity instead of 12. And sex workers, who were previously barred from donating, now can, subject to the same 3-month rule.
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