The Health News United Kingdom April 27 2018

  • A key report on the reform of abortion legislation in Northern Ireland is to recommend a change in the law. The Department of Health and Department of Justice have released the working group on fatal fetal abnormality’s report from 2016. Both departments said the decision was taken to publish the report given the ongoing absence of ministers saying it was in line with Freedom of Information legislation and in the public interest. Abortion is unlawful in Northern Ireland unless it is to preserve the life of the woman, and carries a potential sentence of life imprisonment.
  • Charity Pro Bono Economics estimates that every £1 spent on one-to-one counselling could return society £6.20 in improving future job prospects and cutting crime. More than a third of this would be government savings from higher taxes and less spending on public services. The analysis recognised that some children would have recovered anyway.
  • A study links the long-term use of some drugs with a higher risk of dementia. In England, 1.5 to 2 million people are likely to be taking anticholinergics for depression, Parkinson’s and bladder problems. University of East Anglia researchers found more cases of dementia in patients prescribed larger quantities of particular anticholinergics. But experts said patients should not stop taking them, as their benefits may outweigh any risk.

News on Health Professional Radio. Today is the 27th of April 2018. Read by Tabetha Moreto.

https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/stormont-abortion-report-recommends-change-in-law-in-northern-ireland-36843252.html


A key report on the reform of abortion legislation in Northern Ireland is to recommend a change in the law. The Department of Health and Department of Justice have released the working group on fatal fetal abnormality’s report from two thousand sixteen. Both departments said the decision was taken to publish the report given the ongoing absence of ministers saying it was in line with Freedom of Information legislation and in the public interest. Previously they said the publication was delayed publication until power-sharing was restored and politicians could consider the report.

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The report recommends the law should be changed “to provide for termination of pregnancy where the abnormality is of such a nature as to be likely to cause death either before birth, during birth or in the early period after birth”.

Alliance MLA and former Justice Minister David Ford said: “The report provides full justification for the actions I took as minister to allow abortion in cases where the foetus has no prospect of a viable life.”
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Abortion is unlawful in Northern Ireland unless it is to preserve the life of the woman, and carries a potential sentence of life imprisonment. In two thousand fifteen a High Court judge in Belfast ruled that the current law was in breach of the European Convention on Human Rights in cases of fatal foetal abnormalities or where women are pregnant as a result of sexual crime. After the Department of Justice and the Attorney General successfully appealed the ruling, the NIHRC has now taken its case to the Supreme Court.

http://www.bbc.com/news/health-43894271

A study by a charity has suggested that mental health counselling for primary school pupils who need it could provide long-term benefits for the economy. Pro Bono Economics estimates that every one pound spent on one-to-one counselling could return society six pounds and twenty p in improving future job prospects and cutting crime. More than a third of this would be government savings from higher taxes and less spending on public services. The analysis recognised that some children would have recovered anyway.

The study looked at the improvement in the mental health of four thousand five hundred forty eight pupils from two hundred fifty one primary schools across the UK who had received one-to-one support from children’s mental health charity PlacetwoBe in two thousand sixteen and two thousand seventeen. It said that from its one-year investment of four point two pounds, PlacetwoBe’s counselling service could deliver twenty five point nine million pounds to society by improving each child’s long-term outcome.

The potential benefit per child was calculated at just over five thousand five hundred pounds, of which three thousand five hundred sixty eighty was attributed to their potential higher lifetime earnings and two thousand five pounds to a lower government outlay in areas such as health and the criminal justice system.
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Andy Haldane, the Bank of England’s chief economist and co-founder of Pro Bono Economics, said: “An estimated one in ten children and young people in the UK have a mental health condition. Without effective intervention, these conditions can have a significant impact on their life chances and result in significant long-term costs.”

http://www.bbc.com/news/health-43881209

A study links the long-term use of some drugs with a higher risk of dementia. In England, one point five to two million people are likely to be taking anticholinergics for depression, Parkinson’s and bladder problems. University of East Anglia researchers found more cases of dementia in patients prescribed larger quantities of particular anticholinergics. But experts said patients should not stop taking them, as their benefits may outweigh any risk.

The study found no risk with other anticholinergic medicines used to treat common conditions such as hay fever, travel sickness and stomach cramps. The research, funded by Alzheimer’s Society and published in the British Medical Journal, looked at the medical records of forty thousand seven hundred seventy patients aged from sixty five to ninety nine with a diagnosis of dementia between April two thousand six and July two thousand fifteen and compared them with those of two hundred eighty three thousand nine hundred thirty three people without dementia. It also analysed more than twenty seven million prescriptions – making it the biggest study of its kind into the long-term impact of anticholinergic drugs in relation to dementia.
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Rob Howard, professor of old age psychiatry at University College London, said: “It is possible that use of some of these drugs may have actually been to treat the very earliest symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease, which can be associated with low mood and lower urinary tract infections, many years before the development of dementia.”

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