Health is a right and not a privilege

Health is a right and not a privilege: His Holiness Pope Francis and Dr Tedros have both reiterated that health is a right, and should not be a privilege, and share a commitment to improving the health and wellbeing of the most vulnerable and marginalized – in both rich and poor countries. Pope Francis and Dr Tedros met in Rome in advance of the Global Conference on Primary Health Care, to take place on 25-26 October in Astana, Kazakhstan. The conference marks the fortieth anniversary of the historic Alma Ata Declaration and its commitment to achieve Health for All.

FDA launches global operation to crack down on websites selling illegal, potentially dangerous drugs; including opioids; 465 websites that illegally sell potentially dangerous, unapproved versions of opioid, oncology and antiviral prescription drugs to US consumers were targeted. This effort was part of Operation Pangea XI, the eleventh annual International Internet Week of Action (IIWA). This is a global cooperative effort, led by Interpol, to combat the unlawful sale and distribution of illegal and potentially counterfeit medical products sold on the internet… (FDA, October 23, 2018).

CDC issues level 2 travel alert for Japan due to Rubella “Practice Enhanced Precautions” Health officials in Japan have reported an outbreak of rubella. Most cases continue to be reported in the Kanto region (Tokyo, Kanagawa, Chiba, and Saitama). Travelers to Japan should make sure they are vaccinated against rubella with the MMR (measles, mumps, and rubella) vaccine before travel. Pregnant women who are not protected against rubella through either vaccination or previous rubella infection should not travel to Japan during this outbreak.

Around 14 million people in Yemen, or half the total population of the country, are facing “pre-famine conditions,” said Mark Lowcock, the UN Under-Secretary-General for Humanitarian Affairs, in a briefing to the Security Council on Tuesday. He said that the UN assessment categorizes “pre-famine conditions,” as meaning those who are entirely reliant on external aid for survival. Famines are a rarity in the modern world, and whilst this is a positive sign of progress, it is also what makes the Yemen situation so shocking.

Visit-to-visit variability of blood pressure, both systolic and diastolic, between clinic visits increases the risk of hospitalization and mortality. A systolic change exceeding 35 mm Hg increased the relative risk of death 4.5-fold. Similarly, a diastolic change greater than 23–24 mm Hg almost tripled the risks of hospitalization and death. The study published in September 2018 issue of the American Journal of Hypertension recommends carefully monitoring patients who exhibit BP variability between clinic visits and suggest that electronic medical records can identify such patients.

The top ten countries based on life expectancy forecast for 2040:

  1. Spain (85.8 years)
  2. Japan (85.7 years)
  3. Singapore (85.4 years)
  4. Switzerland (85.2 years)
  5. Portugal (84.5 years)
  6. Italy (84.5 years)
  7. Israel (84.4 years)
  8. France (84.3 years)
  9. Luxembourg (84.1 years)
  10. Australia (84.1 years)

Over 3 million common procedures including cesarean sections and hip replacements in England could become ‘life threatening’ without antibiotics,says Public Health England. According to the English surveillance programme for antimicrobial utilisation and resistance (ESPAUR) report 2018 published Tuesday, the estimated total numbers of bloodstream infections caused by pathogens resistant to one or more key antibiotics increased from 12,250 in 2013 to 16,504 in 2017, a rise of 35%. The most common cause of bloodstream infections was E.coli. Of these, 41% were resistant to the most common antibiotic used to treat infections in hospital, co-amoxiclav.

Mindfulness meditation reduces intraocular pressure, lowers stress biomarkers and modulates gene expression in glaucoma. In a prospective, randomized trial of 90 patients with POAG conducted by AIIMS, New Delhi, those who meditated had significantly lowered stress-biomarker levels including cortisol, IL-6, TNF-α, reactive oxygen species (ROS) and elevated β-endorphins, brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF) and total antioxidant capacity (TAC). The study is published ahead of print Sept. 25, 2018 in the Journal of Glaucoma.

20 Nobel Prizes that changed medicine forever: Hermann Muller (1946) “For the discovery of the production of mutations by means of X-ray irradiation” Geneticist Hermann Muller’s studies of fruit flies helped unveil the dangers related to exposure to x-rays and ionizing radiation. He showed that the higher the exposure, the greater the occurrence of genetic mutations. Muller’s discovery of the mutagenic effects of x-rays has had wide-ranging repercussions and has provided the framework for new spheres of research (Medscape).