The Health News Australia January 30 2018

  • One person is fighting for their life in hospital after nine people overdosed on an illicit drug at a dance party in Melbourne. Three other people also remain in a critical condition on Saturday after they stopped breathing at the I am Hardstyle event at Festival Hall in west Melbourne on Friday night. Health authorities are concerned more people could be affected by overdoses as partygoers flock to concerts and events such as the Midsumma Festival during the Australia Day long weekend.
  • The number of child poisonings due to accidental exposure to medicines has decreased however more education is needed to reduce the number of children with non-urgent cases presenting to hospital. Research from the University of Sydney has found that while hospital admissions for child poisonings from medicines have decreased, there were an increasing number of non-urgent presentations to the emergency department.
  • Nearly double the number of flu cases were recorded in the Australian Capital Territory last year during a horror season but there was a drop in cases at aged care facilities. It comes as the chief health officer Dr. Paul Kelly backed calls for the ACT government to introduce a free flu vaccine for children. Dr. Kelly said the latest figures showed last year’s flu season was the biggest since the pandemic year of 2009. Last year, there were 3,099 notified cases of influenza in the ACT with 560 people admitted to public hospitals, 13% of them admitted to intensive care.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the 30th of January 2018. Read by Tabetha Moreto.

https://www.sbs.com.au/news/being-dead-is-not-cool-nine-people-overdose-at-dance-party

One person is fighting for their life in hospital after nine people overdosed on an illicit drug at a dance party in Melbourne. Three other people also remain in a critical condition on Saturday after they stopped breathing at the I am Hardstyle event at Festival Hall in west Melbourne on Friday night.

Health authorities are concerned more people could be affected by overdoses as partygoers flock to concerts and events such as the Midsumma Festival during the Australia Day long weekend. State health commander Paul Holman told reporters: “That we’ve seen this many young people overdose really concerns us.”

Mister Holman said the nine people taken to hospital were hyperthermic by the time they received first aid.
….
Several had to be intubated and put on ventilators because they were not breathing.
One person collapsed outside Festival Hall, while eight others were found either unconscious or in various states of distress inside the venue.
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It’s understood all the people hospitalised are aged in their twenties. It’s unclear what drugs were ingested, but Ambulance Victoria said it’s mostly likely they were pills.

PMA or Paramethoxyamphetamine are stimulants with hallucinogenic effects similar to MDMA, according to the Alcohol and Drug Foundation.

No one has been charged over the overdoses, but Victoria Police have begun testing some of the substances.

https://sydney.edu.au/news-opinion/news/2018/01/29/poisonings-due-to-medications-decreasing-but-more-work-needed.html

The number of child poisonings due to accidental exposure to medicines has decreased however more education is needed to reduce the number of children with non-urgent cases presenting to hospital. Research from the University of Sydney has found that while hospital admissions for child poisonings from medicines have decreased, there were an increasing number of non-urgent presentations to the emergency department.

The study found that from two thousand seven to two thousand thirteen in New South Wales there were sixty seven thousand eight hundred sixteen calls to the poisons information centre, seven thousand seven hundred thirty nine emergency department presentations and two thousand eighty two hospital admissions.

Lead author Doctor Jane Bell from the Menzies Centre for Health Policy said poisonings remained a common and preventable issue with more interventions needed. Doctor Bell said:
“There remain a considerable number of young children accidentally exposed to medicines, resulting in almost one hospitalisation, three emergency department presentations and twenty seven calls to the poisons information line every day.”
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The study from two thousand seven to two thousand thirteen, found, per ten thousand children that calls to the poisons information centre declined from two hundred twenty to one hundred seventy eight, emergency department presentations remained stable between twenty two to twenty four with a decrease in emergency cases offset by an increase in semi or non-urgent cases, hospital admissions declined from eight to five and the most common medicines involved were those containing paracetamol, ibuprofen and nappy rash creams.

https://www.thesenior.com.au/news/flu-rates-almost-double-in-the-act-but-aged-care-facilities-drop/

Nearly double the number of flu cases were recorded in the Australian Capital Territory last year during a horror season but there was a drop in cases at aged care facilities. It comes as the chief health officer Doctor Paul Kelly backed calls for the ACT government to introduce a free flu vaccine for children.

Doctor Kelly said the latest figures showed last year’s flu season was the biggest since the pandemic year of two thousand nine. Last year, there were three thousand ninety nine notified cases of influenza in the ACT with five hundred sixty people admitted to public hospitals, thirteen percent of them admitted to intensive care. The figures showed flu notifications almost doubled from two thousand sixteen while hospital admissions rose by about forty percent.
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The flu most commonly affected people aged seventy and over the most hospitalisations came in patients aged sixty five to eighty five with more than three hundred admitted. But there was an against trend drop in flu notifications and hospitalisations in aged care facilities. The figures show there were twenty eight hospitalisations from aged care facilities and eighteen deaths.

Doctor Kelly said the strain circulating meant elderly people were particularly vulnerable. This week, the New South Wales government announced it would provide free flu vaccines for children aged six months to five years.

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