Category Archives: Health

Anger grows as wages soar for health-care CEOs while services cut for patients.

Kathleen Wynne must clean up home-care mess: Hepburn

Workers on the front lines of health care are angry that executive salaries are soaring while vital health services are silently slashed.

By:

She sits in her car and cries after telling a war veteran suffering from Parkinson’s disease that she can’t approve visits by a nurse to his home to give him the insulin he needs.

Read more » The Star

‘Brain-eating’ amoeba claims 11th life in Sindh

Photo credits: — AP file photo
Photo credits: — AP file photo

KARACHI: A 57-year-old man — the oldest victim so far — who had visited Pakistan after years in the United States died of infection caused by Naegleria fowleri also known as “brain-eating amoeba” increasing the year’s death toll to 11 in the province and 10th in Karachi, officials said on Sunday.

Read more » DAWN
http://www.dawn.com/news/1134952

The mentally ill population in the largest U.S. jail system is out of control

Screaming Inmates Make L.A. Rethink Jailing Mentally Ill

By James Nash

Inmates in suicide-proof gowns scream and bang on their cell doors one floor below Terri McDonald’s office in the Twin Towers Correctional Facility. The bedlam is a reminder, if she needs one, that the mentally ill population in the largest U.S. jail system is out of control.

It’s a “shameful social and public-safety issue,” said McDonald, the assistant sheriff who runs Los Angeles County’s jails. “I believe we can do better. I believe at some point in the future we’ll look back and wonder, ‘What took so long?’”

Read more » Bloomberg
http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2014-09-26/screaming-inmates-make-l-a-rethink-jailing-mentally-ill.html

Depression Kills

Via Vince Sparks

Last month, I was sitting on my sofa with my laptop when I saw the headline “Robin Williams Found Dead.”

I was shocked and deeply saddened by the news and the loss. It seemed like such a conundrum as to why someone with his persona would commit suicide.

As more information was revealed about his addictions, his Parkinson’s disease diagnosis, and his dealing with severe depression, I totally understood how this unfortunate incident could occur. Of course, the naysayers had to emerge and utter incoherent ramblings about cowardice and his leftist views that made him unhappy. All of the unintelligent garbage that gets reported needs to be tossed away promptly.

Suicide is not an act of cowardice, but a result of depression or other mental illnesses.

Robin Williams’ death is a tragedy, but if it can help start a national conversation about Depression and Mental Illness than something positive can come from an untimely death. It seems that many people view mental illness through a stereotype of straight jackets and padded cells.

Mental Illness encompasses many forms and can be as blatant as someone with agitated, incoherent behavior or very subtle cue which make a person appear to have nothing wrong with them.

I understand the symptoms and the impact, because I suffer from severe depression and anxiety. It is a hard condition to understand because it affects emotions. This makes it difficult for people, not familiar with the disease, to comprehend as a real illness.

Believe me, it is just as real as diabetes, cancer, hypertension or any other disease that hides beneath the surface. It requires treatment just the same as a diabetic requires medication to keep their condition stable.

The illness is as old as recorded history.

Years ago people thought of it as melancholia. The prevailing notion would be “he just needs to pull himself up by his bootstraps.” It was an uneducated thought that if you were sad, you would just get glad again. It was a self-inflicted pity party. The more the condition was studied and as medical advances were made, clinicians realized that there are many factors and conditions involved with the illness. Depression has many causes and can stem from genetic predisposition, life events, faulty mood regulation by the brain, and medical problems.

Whatever the specific cause for depression, there are always chemicals in the brain involved. There are many drugs available for treatment, but each person can react differently due to internal chemical reactions to the medications. The complexity of the illness is daunting for practitioners. They can’t simply review similar symptoms and think that the treatment will be the same for each patient.

Continue reading Depression Kills

A new way to generate insulin-producing cells in type 1 diabetes

By Susan Gammon, Ph.D.

A new study by researchers at Sanford-Burnham Medical Research Institute (Sanford-Burnham) has found that a peptide called caerulein can convert existing cells in the pancreas into those cells destroyed in type 1 diabetes—insulin-producing beta cells. The study, published online July 31 in Cell Death and Disease, suggests a new approach to treating the estimated 3 million people in the U.S., and over 300 million worldwide, living with type 1 diabetes. “We have found a promising technique for type 1 diabetics to restore the body’s ability to produce insulin. By introducing caerulein to the pancreas we were able to generate new beta cells—the cells that produce insulin—potentially  freeing patients from daily doses of insulin to manage their blood-sugar levels.” said Fred Levine, M.D., Ph.D., professor and director of the Sanford Children’s Health Research Center at Sanford-Burnham. The study first examined how mice in which almost all beta cells were destroyed—similar to humans with type 1 diabetes—responded to injections of caerulein. In those mice, but not in normal mice, they found that caerulein caused existing alpha cells in the pancreas to differentiate into insulin-producing beta cells. Alpha cells and beta cells are both endocrine cells meaning they synthesize and secret hormones—and they exist right next to one another in the pancreas in structures called islets. However, alpha cells do not normally become beta cells. –

See more at: http://beaker.sanfordburnham.org/2014/07/a-new-way-to-generate-insulin-producing-cells-in-type-1-diabetes/#sthash.tOSBxYDj.dpuf

The Hunger Games in Pakistan

By Murtaza Haider

For many in the West, The Hunger Games is a box-office hit and a bestselling novel. For most Pakistanis, however, hunger games are no work of fiction. While several million Pakistanis are starving where only eight per cent of the children receive minimum acceptable diet, the government in Islamabad is finalising the budget, which if previous budgets are any indication, is unlikely to address hunger and misery that has spread to every nook and cranny in the country.

Read more » DAWN
http://www.dawn.com/news/716973/the-hunger-games-in-pakistan

Malnutrition in Pakistani children, its causes, consequences and recommendations

Madam, malnutrition is a pathological condition resulting from deficiency of one or more nutrients and has a wide range of clinical manifestations. Children are amongst the worst-affected groups. In 2001, it was noted that malnutrition caused 54% deaths in children living in developing countries.1 The World Health Organization through the Millennium Development Goal 4 has recognized that improved nutrition is crucial in reducing the under-5-years mortality,especially in the developing countries.2

Laying its special emphasis in our part of the world, the percentage of malnourished children is highest in Asia with 70% of undernourished children living in this part of the world. In South Asia, one out of two preschoolers is underweight and has stunted growth.3 In Pakistan,33.03% (CI= 27.96-38.54)of children under the age of 5 are underweight, 53.38% of the children are stunted and wasting has been reported in 11.52% of the children,4 which clearly shows that the nutritional status in this country is poor.Goiter caused by iodine deficiency is also common with the highest cases reported in Pakistan, India and parts of Indonesia.3
Marasmus, Kwashiorkor or Marasmus Kwashiorkor will probably develop in a child who is malnourished for a prolonged period of time leading to an increased mortality. Children who are undernourished are more susceptible to the effects of infectious diseases compared to children who are adequately nourished.1 Infections can in turn lead to more undernourishment as food intake is decreased during infection and this turns into a vicious cycle.
One of the possible causes of such status could be declined production of food.1 Many landscapes that were once fertile are deemed barren due to environmental pollution caused by mankind. This in turn leads to less land that is available for farming and ultimately food production per acre is insufficient to touch base with other countries. Poverty, unawareness, population growth, political instability, loss of food stock due to poor harvest and natural calamities are some of the important factors causing malnutrition amongst children. Malnutrition in Pakistani children has been directly linked to illiteracy of mothers, low family income and larger family size.5 Maternal undernourishment is also a contributing factor to babies being born with low-birth-weight.1 The increased basal metabolic rate due to acute and chronic illnesses may also precipitate the pre-existing malnutrition.

Read more » JPMA
http://jpma.org.pk/full_article_text.php?article_id=3324

Stunting, wasting and micronutrient malnutrition endemic in Pakistan

The National Nutrition Survey 2011 released here has indicated that stunting, wasting and micronutrient malnutrition are endemic in Pakistan. The report said the increasing rate of chronic and acute malnutrition is primarily due to poverty, high illiteracy rates among mothers and food insecurity.

The survey was conducted by the Aga Khan University’s Division of women and child health, Pakistan’s Ministry of Health and UNICEF. The last such survey was conducted in 2001-2002, according to federal planning minister Ahsan Iqbal who said task forces must be formed to address the situation.

The survey found widespread micronutrient deficiencies among women especially in those pregnant — 51 per cent surveyed were anaemic; 46 per cent had vitamin A deficiency; 47.6 per cent had zinc deficiency; and 68.9 per cent had vitamin D deficiency. Anaemia was high at 50.4 per cent in other women too.

Among children under five, 43.7 per cent were stunted in 2011 as compared to 41.6 per cent in the 2001 National Nutrition Survey. Children under five also suffered from: anaemia-61.9 per cent; iron deficiency-43.8 per cent; vitamin-A deficiency- 54 per cent; and zinc deficiency 39.2 per cent. In the Saarc, Pakistan has the second highest stunting rate for children under five years- 43.7 per cent. About 32 per cent of the children were underweight. The elderly population too was not spared with over 53.9 per cent not having normal weight.

Read more » http://www.thehindu.com/news/international/south-asia/stunting-wasting-and-micronutrient-malnutrition-endemic-in-pakistan/article5147173.ece

Measles Vaccine Wipes Out Cancer in Groundbreaking Test

By Stan Schroeder

Researchers at the Mayo Clinic have completed a groundbreaking new test: They knocked widespread blood cancer into remission with a single massive blast of measles vaccine.

Stacy Erholtz, who was suffering from an advanced stage of blood cancer, recovered thanks to an intravenous injection of the measles virus, which was sufficient to overwhelm the cancer’s natural defenses, the StarTribune reports

As far as clinical trials go, this was a small test because it only had two subjects. But lead researcher Dr. Stephen Russell told StarTribune it’s a promising start.

“It’s a landmark. We’ve known for a long time that we can give a virus intravenously and destroy metastatic cancer in mice. Nobody’s shown that you can do that in people before,” he said.

The viruses bind to cancer cells and use them to replicate. The process destroys the cells, and the body’s immune system attacks what’s left since it’s marked as viral material. This test also gave doctors a benchmark for the virus dose needed to reduce cancer in patients — 100 billion infectious units instead of the standard 10,000 units.

There are still hurdles to overcome — like the body’s own defenses. Once the immune system has experience fighting a virus, it’s not effective a second time. The body attacks it before it can begin taking over cancer cells.

Doctors will also need to do more testing on more patients. They plan to expand their trials by September.

Courtesy: Mashable
http://mashable.com/2014/05/15/measles-vaccine-fight-cancer/?utm_cid=mash-com-fb-main-link

Star Wars-style robotic arm approved for mass production

A “near-natural” prosthetic arm, that took eight years to develop and test, has been approved for mass production by the US Food and Drug Administration.

The DEKA Arm System has been affectionately dubbed “The Luke,” after Star Wars’ Luke Skywalker who received a robotic replacement for the hand he lost in a fight with Darth Vader in the 1980 film “The Empire Strikes Back.”

One of the developers, Dean Camen, the inventor of the Segway, says that the new type of a prosthetic limb will dramatically improve the lives of amputees. Tests have shown that subjects fitted with the arm were able to pick up grapes and raisins, use keys and locks, brush hair, open envelopes, pick up an egg without breaking it, eat cereal and even use chopsticks.

Read more » RT
http://rt.com/news/158048-natural-robotic-arm-approved/

The Mood Diaries

30/4/2014

A few weeks ago was when a psychologist told me that I was exhibiting symptoms of a mood disorder. Less than a week ago I went to meet a psychiatrist. I was prescribed medicines for bipolar disorder and anxiety issues. At the time I had no idea what those medicines had been prescribed for- I had simply presumed that they were anti-depressants. That they would numb me. That I wouldn’t get all violent with my friends anymore. That things would be alright. Perhaps I would be the spicy tangy minx that I always have been but the storms inside me would calm down to a certain extent. That perhaps the fierce edges would smoothen out. Not realizing,  that those fiery aspects are what make me who I am.

Read more » http://prernakalbag19.blogspot.in/

SINDH – Drought in Tharparkar: Another child dies as govt springs into action

KARACHI / ISLAMABAD / HYDERABAD: As Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif took serious notice of the appalling number of child deaths in Tharparkar, Sindh, one more infant died on Friday, taking the toll to 122 in three months.

The five-month-old Farzana, who was brought from Thar to Civil Hospital, Hyderabad, suffered from pneumonia and appeared malnourished, said Dr Akram Shaikh.

Meanwhile, Pakistan Army troops from Hyderabad Garrison left for the drought-affected areas on the directives of the prime minister. The contingents, carrying immediate relief goods and rations, are also taking lady doctors, paramedical staff and medicines with them.

Continue reading SINDH – Drought in Tharparkar: Another child dies as govt springs into action

Immune upgrade gives ‘HIV shielding’

By James Gallagher Health and science reporter, BBC News

Doctors have used gene therapy to upgrade the immune system of 12 patients with HIV to help shield them from the virus’s onslaught.

It raises the prospect of patients no longer needing to take daily medication to control their infection.

The patients’ white blood cells were taken out of the body, given HIV resistance and then injected back in.

The small study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, suggested the technique was safe.

Some people are born with a very rare mutation that protects them from HIV.

It changes the structure of their T-cells, a part of the immune system, so that the virus cannot get inside and multiply.

Read more » BBC
http://www.bbc.com/news/health-26451427

Food poverty now bigger public health concern than diet – expert claims

Panorama explores claims many turn to food banks due to being penalised when judged to have broken benefit conditions

By Patrick Butler, social policy editor

The prevalence of poverty–stricken families who cannot afford to buy sufficient food is overtaking unhealthy eating as the most pressing public health concern, a public health specialist has claimed.

The claim is made in a BBC Panorama documentary to be broadcast on Monday evening which found that over a third of local authorities in England and Wales were now providing funding for food banks, despite government claims that charity food is not a part of the social security system.

Julie Hirst, public health specialist at Derbyshire county council, told Panorama the authority had invested £126,000 from its public health budget in food banks.

She said: “It’s now become an issue of food poverty and some people in the country are not being able to eat at all – and if people can’t eat at all, what’s the point in trying to get them to eat healthily?”

Elizabeth Dowler, a professor at Warwick University and the co-author of a recent government-commissioned report on food aid provision, told the programme it was shocking so many councils were investing in food banks.

“Food banks are an inadequate plaster over a gaping wound … They do not solve the problems. And that they should be enshrined as an inadequate solution is deeply immoral.”

Read more » theguardian
http://www.theguardian.com/society/2014/mar/03/food-banks-public-health-benefits-panorama?CMP=twt_gu&utm_source=hootsuite&utm_campaign=hootsuite

Pill camera to screen for colon cancer approved in U.S.

Ingestible pill camera could be option for up to 10% of those who can’t have complete colonoscopy

An ingestible pill camera to help screen for polyps and early signs of colon cancer has been approved for use in the U.S.

Given Imaging Ltd.’s PillCam Colon was originally touted as an alternative to traditional colonoscopy procedures, but the company’s research found images taken by the mini-camera aren’t as clear as those taken during the more invasive procedure.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the device for patients who have experienced an incomplete colonoscopy. The company estimates 750,000 U.S. patients are not able to complete the procedure each year, due to anatomy issues, previous surgery or various colon diseases.

Read more » CBC News
http://www.cbc.ca/news/health/pill-camera-to-screen-for-colon-cancer-approved-in-u-s-1.2521511

New vaccine for High blood pressure

The blood pressure injection you need just twice a year

Jab blocks effects of a hormone in body that triggers high blood pressure

So far been tested only on rats, and successfully lowered high readings

By Pat Hagan

A vaccine given just twice a year could keep high blood pressure at bay. The jab could free millions of people from the burden of taking pills every day to keep their condition under control.

It works by blocking the effects of a hormone in the body that triggers high blood pressure by making the muscles surrounding blood vessels contract.

This chemical, called angiotensin 2, forces muscles to keep contracting, which makes blood vessels narrower and increases the pressure on vessel walls – raising the risk of a heart attack or stroke. The vaccine prompts the immune system to release antibodies that stop angiotensin 2 from reaching the muscles.

The experimental jab, which has so far been tested only on rats, successfully lowered their high readings and kept blood pressure at lower, safer levels for at least six months before a booster was needed.

Researchers at Osaka University in Japan, where the jab is being developed, hope to carry out trials on humans within the next two years. High blood pressure, or hypertension, affects one in five adults in the UK and is thought to be responsible for half of all heart attacks and strokes.

It develops when blood vessel walls lose their ability to stretch and dilate, restricting the flow of blood through the body.

In some patients, it’s possible to get readings down by eating less salt and taking more exercise, but millions need pills to control it.

One of the main treatments is a class of drugs known as angiotensin  2 receptor blockers (ARBs).

These work by stopping angiotensin 2 from locking on to receptors on the outside of muscle cell walls and thereby triggering the dangerous contractions that cause high blood pressure.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-2543019/The-blood-pressure-injection-need-just-twice-year.html#ixzz2rSz0Z86u

Bee Venom Destroys Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV)

Nanoparticles carrying a toxin found in bee venom can destroy human immunodeficiency virus (HIV) while leaving the surrounding cells unharmed. The research was conducted by the Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis. The Nanoparticles carry melittin, which is the principal active component of bee venom. Melittin fuses with the HIV virus and destroys it’s protective envelope while molecular bumpers prevent the nanoparticles from harming the body’s normal cells. Bee venom is known to disrupt cellular walls and destroy tumour cells as well.

Bee venom contains a potent toxin called melittin that can poke holes in the protective envelope that surrounds HIV, and other viruses. Large amounts of free melittin can cause a lot of damage. Indeed, in addition to anti-viral therapy, the paper’s senior author, Samuel A. Wickline, MD, the J. Russell Hornsby Professor of Biomedical Sciences, has shown melittin-loaded nanoparticles to be effective in killing tumor cells.

The new study shows that melittin loaded onto these nanoparticles does not harm normal cells. That’s because Hood added protective bumpers to the nanoparticle surface. When the nanoparticles come into contact with normal cells, which are much larger in size, the particles simply bounce off. HIV, on the other hand, is even smaller than the nanoparticle, so HIV fits between the bumpers and makes contact with the surface of the nanoparticle, where the bee toxin awaits. (1)

Most anti-HIV drugs inhibit the virus’s ability to replicate. This is an anti-replication strategy that does nothing to stop the infection, and many strains of the virus have found ways around these drugs and continue reproducing. Given this discovery, a new vaginal gel could possibly be used in places where HIV is prominent. It can be used as a preventative measure to stop the initial infection and prevent the spread of HIV. The bee venom HIV study was published a several days ago in the journal Antiviral Therapy.

More than 34 million people are living with HIV/AIDS worldwide, and over 3 million of them are under the age of 15. Everyday, thousands of people contract HIV around the world.

– See more at: http://www.collective-evolution.com/2013/03/13/bee-venom-destroys-human-immunodeficiency-virus-hiv/#sthash.7Amjn3a3.dpuf

Nestlé: Stop draining Pakistan dry!

Nestlé is draining developing countries’ groundwater to make its Pure Life bottled water, destroying countries’ natural resources before forcing its people to buy their own water back.

Now Nestlé is moving into Pakistan and sucking up the local water supply, rendering entire areas uninhabitable in order to sell mineral-enriched water to the upper class as a status symbol, while the poor watch wells run dry and their children fall ill.

Read more » http://action.sumofus.org/a/nestle-water-pakistan/?sub=mtle

I in 5 Americans suffer from mental illness

Some Alarming Facts About Mental Illness In America

By Pamela Engel

Mental illness is a increasingly widespread in the U.S., affecting around one in five American adults every year, according to survey from the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration

Of the 45.6 million adults who had diagnosable mental illness in 2011, 11.5 million had serious mental illness. Other surveys put those numbers even higher.

Britain 2013: children of poor families are still left behind

By and Taytula Burke

Special report: More than four decades ago a groundbreaking report, Born to Fail?, highlighted the extent of child poverty in Britain. Since then, despite the pledges of successive governments, things have only got worse. Where now for the next generation?

Read more » The Guardian
http://www.theguardian.com/society/2013/aug/24/child-poverty-britain-40-years-failure

“The story of DNA continues to twist and turn”!

Scientists Discover Quadruple Helix: Four Strand DNA In Human Cells

by Arjun

The human race knows very little of itself, almost like a race with amnesia. As we continue to move forward through time, new discoveries are made that make old theories obsolete and false. It’s a good lesson that shows us how we can attach ourselves to “truths” and believe them whole-heartedly, often forgetting that truth is constantly changing and new paradigms of perception always lurk around the corner.

Decades after scientists described our “chemical code” of life using the double helix DNA, researchers have discovered four-stranded DNA within human cells. The structures are called G-quadruplexes, because they form in regions of DNA that are full of guanine, one of the DNA molecule’s four building blocks. The others are adenine, cytosine and thymine. A hydrogen bond is responsible for holding the four guanines together. The four stranded DNA usually presents itself right before cell division.

The discovery was published online in Nature Chemistry, and you can take a look at it here. The study was led by Shankar Balasubramanian at the University of cambridge, UK.

For us, it strongly supports a new paradigm to be investigated – using these four-stranded structures as targets for personalized treatments in the future.We have found that by trapping the quadruplex DNA with synthetic molecules we can sequester and stabilise them, providing important insights into how we might grind cell division to a halt — Shankar Balasubramanian

The study went on to show certain links between concentrations of four-stranded G-quandruplexes and the process of DNA replication, which is crucial to cell division and cell production. G-quadruplexes, (when targeted with synthetic molecules responsible for trapping and holding these DNA structures) prevent cells from replicating their DNA, thus blocking cell division. Scientists believe that this discovery could possibly lead to a stop in cell proliferation at the root of cancer ….

Read more » Collective Evolution
http://www.collective-evolution.com/2013/07/17/scientists-discover-quadruple-helix-four-strand-dna-in-human-cells/

Via – Facebook

Simple vinegar test slashed cervical cancer death rates by one-third in a remarkable study

Vinegar cancer test saves lives, India study finds

By MUNEEZA NAQVI and MARILYNN MARCHIONE

MUMBAI, India (AP) — A simple vinegar test slashed cervical cancer death rates by one-third in a remarkable study of 150,000 women in the slums of India, where the disease is the top cancer killer of women.

Doctors reported the results Sunday at a cancer conference in Chicago. Experts called the outcome “amazing” and said this quick, cheap test could save tens of thousands of lives each year in developing countries by spotting early signs of cancer, allowing treatment before it’s too late.

Usha Devi, one of the women in the study, says it saved her life.

“Many women refused to get screened. Some of them died of cancer later,” Devi said. “Now I feel everyone should get tested. I got my life back because of these tests.”

Pap smears and tests for HPV, a virus that causes most cervical cancers, have slashed cases and deaths in the United States. But poor countries can’t afford those screening tools.

Continue reading Simple vinegar test slashed cervical cancer death rates by one-third in a remarkable study

Drug Policies Fuel Deadly Hepatitis C Epidemic

Punitive Approach Endangering Public Health

(New York) – Governments should ensure that efforts to reduce illicit drug use do not increase vulnerability to infection with hepatitis C or impede access to treatment, Human Rights Watch said today in response to a report by the Global Commission on Drug Policy. The report, released on May 30, 2013, urges reform of existing drug policies to protect public health, minimize human rights violations, and ensure access to health care for drug users.

The 20-page report, “The Negative Impact of the War on Drugs on Public Health: The Hidden Hepatitis C Epidemic,” was released in advance of the 23rd International Harm Reduction Conference, Vilnius, Lithuania, June 9 to 12.  Lithuania lies on the frontiers of the world’s fastest growing hepatitis C and HIV epidemics in Eastern Europe and Central Asia.

“Punitive drug laws expose drug users to unnecessary illness and even death from hepatitis C,” said Rebecca Schleifer, health and human rights advocacy director at Human Rights Watch. “The epidemic makes it urgent for governments to reform these laws to protect both drug users and the public health.”

The report recommends urgent and wide-ranging reforms of international drug control policies to protect the health and other human rights of drug users.

The report says that repressive drug policies have failed to reduce the worldwide illicit drug supply, and fueled the growth of organized crime, violence, and mass incarceration of people who use drugs. These failed policies have also fueled a “viral time bomb” – a massive hepatitis C epidemic that threatens serious and long-term global human, social, and economic costs.

Human Rights Watch research in many countries including the US,Ukraine, Russia, Thailand, Canada, Kazakhstan, and Bangladesh – has documented how criminal laws relating to drug use and possession for personal use, and related law enforcement practices drive people away from lifesaving information and health services.

Continue reading Drug Policies Fuel Deadly Hepatitis C Epidemic

British people are committing suicide to escape poverty. Is this what the State wants?

By Sonia Poulton

In the last few months of his life, Craig Monk attempted several overdoses and was described as ‘vulnerable’ by his family.

An accident a few years before had resulted in the partial amputation of his leg and he had suffered unnecessary, and anxiety-inducing, obstructions in receiving state assistance – even though his disability was clear for all see. Over time he slipped further into poverty, the ends could no longer meet.

Finally, the fear of there not being a light at the end of his personal tunnel overwhelmed him and Mr. Monk, a 43-year-old from Burnley, was found hanging in his home in October last year.

Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/debate/article-2117718/British-people-committing-suicide-escape-poverty-Is-State-wants.html#ixzz2UOxRN5Yg 

Follow us: @MailOnline on Twitter

Healthcare Reform: What Would Jesus Do?

By Lou Kavar

“There was a woman who had been suffering from hemorrhages for twelve years. She had endured much under many physicians, and had spent all that she had; and she was no better, but rather grew worse” (Mark 5: 25-26).

Their web site describes their mission. They “provide free medical care to people in remote areas around the world…” They’ve sponsored expeditions with doctors, dentists, nurses and other health care professionals to provide care in the Dominican Republic, Haiti, Honduras, Guatemala, East Africa, India, Nepal and many other countries – serving those with no other option for health care. In Guyana, they have established a permanent base of operations. Remote Area Medical has pioneered no cost medical care, touching the lives of people who have no hope for other treatment.

While it is understandable that Remote Area Medical provides free health care to people in under-developed, impoverished countries, Americans should be scandalized to know that Remote Area Medical has a year round schedule to provide care to people in the United States. Yes, in the richest country in the world, in the country which brags of having the “best” healthcare in the world, American citizens line up and wait for free medical care because they have no other option.

From August 11 to 18, 2009, Remote Area Medical held clinic hours in the “remote” area of Los Angeles County. People slept in the streets overnight, lining up for health care services which they longed to receive for years. Various newspaper and TV reports recounted stories of people waiting in line to receive treatment from chronic and severe conditions. One woman stated that if her child did not receive eye glasses from Remote Area Medical, the child would have had none.

While people waited in the streets of Inglewood, Calif. for medical care, vocal, angry, and hate-filled debates ensued in other parts of the United States over health care reform. A public health care option for those in need was labeled as socialism, communism, and Nazism – often by the same commentators.

“She came up behind Jesus and touched his cloak, saying to herself, ‘If I only touch his clothes, I will be made well.’ Immediately her hemorrhage stopped; and she felt in her body that she was healed of her disease” (Mark 5:2-29).

Like the woman two millennia ago, people are pushing through crowds hoping to find help and healing for serious medical conditions. While Jesus was a willing conduit for this woman’s healing, many of the followers of Jesus today actively work to block access of those in need to health care. What’s even more scandalous is that many of these same people insist that America was founded as a “Christian nation” yet they vigorously oppose helping those in need through a public option for health care.

Continue reading Healthcare Reform: What Would Jesus Do?

Jewish circumcision leave 2 infants in New York with Herpes

Baby boys got sick after the ultra-Orthodox practice

By Reuven Blau / NEW YORK DAILY NEWS

Two Brooklyn infants have contracted herpes through a controversial religious circumcision ritual in the past three months, according to the city’s Health Department.

The unidentified baby boys became sick after the centuries-old, ultra-Orthodox ritual associated with the bris known as metzizah b’peh.

Under the practice, the rabbi or mohel removes blood from the wound on the baby’s penis with his mouth — a practice city Health Department officials have slammed, saying it carries “inherent risks” for babies.

The Bloomberg administration has moved to require mohels who perform the ritual to provide parents with a document informing them of the health risks involved. The parents must then sign a consent form.

But several influential religious Jewish organizations have sued, arguing the policy violates the First Amendment.

In January, a federal judge ruled against the group’s initial legal maneuver to block the new city policy.

Continue reading Jewish circumcision leave 2 infants in New York with Herpes

Canadian giant Goldcorp has been repeatedly accused of damaging the environment and violating human rights in countries where it operates

Canada’s Goldcorp operations in Guatemala under the microscope

By Cecilia Jamasmie

Canadian giant Goldcorp (TSX:G) (NYSE:GG) has been repeatedly accused of damaging the environment and violating human rights in countries where it operates, particularly Guatemala. …

Read more » Mining
http://www.mining.com/canadas-goldcorp-operations-in-guatemala-under-the-microscope-10946/

– – – – – – – – – – – – –

More details » Is Canada’s Gold Corp. Good for Guatemala? Pt2

Lyuba Zarsky: Environmental and health effects are a violation of human rights Watch full multipart Gold and Latin America

Uchek app tests urine for medical issues

By Jane Wakefield, Technology reporter

A smartphone app that uses a phone’s camera to analyse urine and check for a range of medical conditions has been shown off at the TED (Technology, Education and Design) conference in Los Angeles.

Uchek tests for 25 different health issues and could help diagnose and treat diseases in the developing world.

Increasingly mobile health is being talked up as a lifesaver in such areas.

The app is the brainchild of TED fellow Myshkin Ingawale.

“I wanted to get medical health checks into users’ hands,” he told the BBC.

Urine can be tested for the presence of 10 elements – including glucose, proteins and nitrites.

These can be used to pinpoint a range of conditions including diabetes, urinary tract infects, cancers, liver problems as well as being used to keep track of general health.

Users need to collect their urine and dip a standard test strip into it. ….

Read more » BBC
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-21586082