Medicine

The UK’s First Specialist Medical Cannabis Clinic Has Opened

Bosses at the clinic say it will provide a lifeline to those experiencing chronic pain. HuffPost Press Association The UK’s first specialist medical cannabis clinic has opened in Greater Manchester. It follows the Government announcement that specialist doctors could prescribe cannabis products to patients for medicinal use from November. The decisions by medics need to be made on a case-by-case basis and only when the patient has an unmet special clinical need that cannot be met by licensed products. The ... Read More »

‘The last moments were beautiful’: Wife remembers firefighter who died at Swiss euthanasia clinic

When Christine Thornton said goodbye to her husband at a euthanasia clinic in Switzerland last week, he turned to her, told her he loved her, and said, “I’m going now”. Simone Fox Koob WAtoday They had spent four days by each other’s side, having coffee in Basel’s picturesque old town, eating cheese in the Swiss Alps and visiting the border so her husband could say he’d been to France. “Troy said to me it was a lovely way to spend ... Read More »

Aged care workforce will need to triple by 2050 to meet demand, inquiry hears

About 83,500 extra places will be needed over the next 10 years alone, but service providers say they are under significant cost pressures. AAP – SBS Demand for aged care places will explode over the next decade and require a tripling of the workforce by 2050, the aged care royal commission has been told. At the same time, funding uncertainty has caused some residential care providers to put development plans on hold. Recent data shows that 83,500 extra places will ... Read More »

We Don’t Need Private Health Insurance

New single-payer plans don’t need to worry about carving out roles for health-care profiteers. Adam Gaffney The Nation Does achieving “Medicare for All” mean mostly eliminating private health insurance? Single-payer proponents say yes: After all, if a public plan provides comprehensive, no-deductible coverage for everyone, nobody would want—much less be willing pay for—duplicative private coverage. Yet candidates who previously embraced single-payer sometimes seem a bit unsure. For instance, Senator Cory Booker, who co-sponsored Senator Bernie Sanders’s single-payer plan back in ... Read More »

Politics with Michelle Grattan: Kerryn Phelps on medical transfer numbers

Independent MP Kerryn Phelps, who set the ball rolling for the medical transfers legislation, says its passage is “a remarkable exercise in cooperation”. Michelle Grattan The Conversation Phelps says that of the about 1000 people on Manus and Nauru “around 70 people require urgent medical evacuation” and “another couple of hundred will require transfer but not as urgently”. She describes Scott Morrison’s proposal to reopen the Christmas Island detention facility as a “political statement”. “What we need to do is ... Read More »

‘Kill myself or leave’: female surgeons reveal horrifying conditions

Sexual harassment, bullying and a contempt for motherhood are driving aspiring female surgeons out of operating theatres. Kate Aubusson The Age Women training to become surgeons have seriously contemplated suicide, been invited to fondle the nipples of a male colleague and dismissed as childbearers undeserving of medical training, a series of in-depth interviews reveals. The testimonials confirm the shocking case of surgical trainee Dr Yumiko Kadota is not an isolated one, but an endemic problem in Australian hospitals. Bullying, sexual abuse, extreme ... Read More »

Having More Education Won’t Slow the Effects of Dementia, New Study Says

”Researchers are still trying to piece together how and why the brain starts failing in old age, but one thing seemed for sure: that having more education earlier in life could build up a robust enough brain reserve to slow down the… Alice Perk Time But in a new study published in the journal Neurology, researchers found that education may not be as important in combating cognitive decline and dementia as they once thought. In a study involving nearly 3,000 ... Read More »

Anxiety on rise among the young in social media age

YouGov survey shows 18% of young people in UK do not think life is worth living Robert Booth The Guardian The number of young people in the UK who say they do not believe that life is worth living has doubled in the last decade, amid a sense of overwhelming pressure from social media which is driving feelings of inadequacy, new research suggests. In 2009, only 9% of 16-25-year-olds disagreed with the statement that “life is really worth living”, but ... Read More »

Influential doctors aren’t disclosing their drug company ties

In September, the New York Times revealed that one of the world’s top cancer specialists had quietly received millions of dollars from drug and other companies. And what’s more, he’d failed to disclose the payments in many of his high-profile medical journal articles. Authors: The Conversation A few months before that, a study found that many experts who write medical textbooks received company payments, but again, their readers didn’t know about it. Today our Australian study of the doctors who ... Read More »

China’s gene-edited babies are real, and one more is on the way

Beijing: A second Chinese woman is pregnant with a “gene-edited” baby and is being medically supervised by local authorities, a Chinese government investigation has revealed. Kirsty Needham The Sydney Morning Herald Chinese researcher He Jiankui shocked the science world when he revealed the existence of baby twins, born to fathers carrying HIV, who had been altered genetically to make them HIV resistant. Authorities in Guangdong province moved swiftly to investigate the claims amid a worldwide backlash. On Monday investigators announced their preliminary findings, ... Read More »

Three Charts on who uses illicit drugs in Australia

To demonstrate the failure of the war on drugs, NSW Greens MP Cate Faehrmann came out this week about her own drug use: Since my 20s, I’ve occasionally taken MDMA [ecstasy] at dance parties and music festivals. I know journalists, tradies, lawyers, public servants, doctors, police and yes, politicians (most well into their forties), who have done the same. Nicole Lee The Conversation When asked by journalists on Monday, Prime Minister Scott Morrison said he’d never taken illicit drugs, while ... Read More »

How to feed a growing population healthy food without ruining the planet

If we’re serious about feeding the world’s growing population healthy food, and not ruining the planet, we need to get used to a new style of eating. Authors: The Conversation This includes cutting our Western meat and sugar intakes by around 50%, and doubling the amount of nuts, fruits, vegetables and legumes we consume. These are the findings our the EAT-Lancet Commission, released today. The Commission brought together 37 leading experts in nutrition, agriculture, ecology, political sciences and environmental sustainability, ... Read More »

The politics of fear: How fear goes tribal, allowing us to be manipulated

Fear is arguably as old as life. It is deeply ingrained in the living organisms that have survived extinction through billions of years of evolution. Arash Javanbakht The Conversation Its roots are deep in our core psychological and biological being, and it is one of our most intimate feelings. Danger and war are as old as human history, and so are politics and religion. Demagogues have always used fear for intimidation of the subordinates or enemies, and shepherding the tribe ... Read More »

Tumor-free flounder are just 1 dividend from the cleanup of Boston Harbor

Thirty years ago, during the 1988 presidential campaign, then-Vice President George H.W. Bush took a boat ride across Boston Harbor and derided the environmental record of his rival, Massachusetts… Michael Moore The Conversation Bush was right. For decades Boston had been dumping barely treated sewage into the harbor, although a court-ordered cleanup was just starting. Since 1986 colleagues and I have studied tumors in Boston Harbor flounder, which were a major driver of public outcry over the state of the ... Read More »

Here’s why doctors are backing pill testing at music festivals across Australia

For many years experts in the field of drug policy in Australia have known existing policies are failing. Authors: The Conversation Crude messages (calls for total abstinence: “just say no to drugs”) and even cruder enforcement strategies (harsher penalties, criminalisation of drug users) have had no impact on the use of drugs or the…. Whether we like it or not, drug use is common in our society, especially among young people. In 2016 43% of people aged 14 and older reported ... Read More »

Indian Teens’ Mental Distress Was Invisible, Invalid Until A Decade Ago

Writer Himanjali Sankar says her book ‘The Lies We Tell’ emerged from wanting to understand difficult mental states in a socially and culturally familiar context. Himanjali Sankar HuffPost Mental illness no longer carries the stigma it used to have even ten years back. But it is tagged by many , ranging from disappointment to impatience and annoyance at what is perceived as self-indulgence at some level. When those in greater control of their mental states come face to face with ... Read More »