TOWP Health Archives: February - 2018

February 28, 2018Germany debates how to clean up its diesel act. Germany's legal system has acted where the politicians couldn't or wouldn't - it ruled on Tuesday that local authorities can ban diesel cars from their roads if pollution levels break the legal limits. Germany's giant car industry has been badly shaken after Volkswagen was caught rigging their diesel emission tests. "A retrofit would start at somewhere around 1500 euros. But here I think it is the moral duty of the car manufacturers, even if just to save their reputation, to contribute to covering the costs wherever possible," said Markus Schape, a lawyer for the German Auto Safety Group. But it's unclear how it will work in practice - on Wednesday a transport ministry spokesman admitted that the high costs of retrofits meant that the value of the vehicle would have to be taken into account. Euronews.

February 28, 2018Scotland issued first red alert whether warning. From 3pm and overnight, these areas should be prepared now for extreme whether conditions, risk to life, wide-spread damage, travel and power cuts likely. ITV This Morning.

February 28, 2018Hazardous substance in letter afflicts 11 at US marine base. A security scare has been reported at a US military base in Arlington, Virginia. Eleven people fell ill and three had to be taken to hospital after an envelope containing an unknown substance was opened. A hazardous materials team was dispatched and the building evacuated. The sick are said to have come down with nosebleeds and burning hands after the letter was opened. The three people in hospital are said to be in a stable condition. Euronews.

February 28, 2018The photograph of a huge snow cloud looming over London features on a number of Wednesday's front pages. It's the "Rage Of The Beast", says the Daily Mirror, which reports that four people died in the wintry weather that swept across the UK on Tuesday. A number of schools were shut and trains and flights were disrupted, the paper says. Papers.

February 27, 2018. The Metro reports that five-year-old Ellie-May Clark, who had asthma, died after she was turned away from the doctor because she was five minutes late for her appointment. The coroner branded the doctor's decision "unacceptable", the newspaper says. Papers.

February 27, 2018.  "Blizzards To Sweep Britain", says the Express, which, like many of Tuesday's papers, focuses on the cold weather in the UK. The newspaper warns Storm Emma will be the coldest blast in 27 years - with temperatures plunging to -15C (5F). It's so cold even the sea has frozen, the paper says, showing a picture of ice along the shore of Weston-super-Mare. Papers.

February 26, 2018Cold temperatures indoors and even outdoors can lead to an increase in heart attacks, strokes, and increase in quite severe chest infections because it makes your blood more likely to clot, making it hard to get bugs and so-on out of your lungs. ITV News.

February 26, 2018. The millions of pounds is being invested by the home office to help stop vulnerable young people being exploited by criminal gangs. Its thought around 4000 London teenagers are among those being targeted to sell drugs in rural towns and villages. ITV News.

February 26, 2018Heartbreak for mother-of-three, 32, after her two sons are diagnosed with cancer within four months. Keri Redfearn's son Leo, 10, was diagnosed with neuroblastoma last October. Her son Oliver, six, was told he had non-Hodgkin's lymphoma months later. Oliver started experiencing painful symptoms last Christmas Day  . The brothers lie next to each other in hospital; offering mutual support. Ms Redfear is speaking out to raise awareness of childhood cancers. Mail.

February 26, 2018Whereas, the i reports British shoppers may be sold "inferior" dairy products if a post-Brexit trade deal with the US goes ahead. It says the American dairy industry is lobbying for less stringent rules which could allow products from cows with udder infections to be sold. Papers.

February 26, 2018. Snow chaos will "cripple" Britain, claims the Daily Express. The paper says -15C temperatures will disrupt travel, power and even mobile phone signals. It adds the army has been drafted in - in preparation of up to a foot of snow and ice over the coming week. Papers.

February 25, 2018. LA British Columbia resident who adopted a pot-bellied pig named Molly from the SPCA and then ate it has been banned from future SPCA adoptions. Molly was one of 57 pot-bellied pigs to be seized following an animal cruelty investigation on Vancouver Island a year ago. SPCA staff say they spent months nursing the pigs back to health before they could be adopted. liveleak.

February 25, 2018. The Times leads with research from Oxford University revealing that anti-depressants do work, but some are more effective than others. Papers.

February 25, 2018The Telegraph says the average person is eating 50% more calories than they realise, according to official estimates. It says men are worst at "kidding themselves" into believing they are eating fewer calories than they actually are. Papers.

February 25, 2018. The Daily Mirror leads with Tom Evans's campaign to keep his ill toddler, Alfie, alive after a High Court judge ruled that life support should be withdrawn. Papers.

February 25, 2018The Daily Express warns of an "Arctic blast" on its front page, saying that the snow storm, expected to hit all regions of the UK, could put lives at risk. Papers.

February 25, 2018Food safety fears in half of meat factories audited by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) are highlighted in the top story on the front of the Guardian. The paper says suppliers in England, Northern Ireland and Wales breached safety and hygiene regulations, including failing to maintain legal temperature controls. Papers.

February 24, 2018. Emily Dumler, of Kansas City, Missouri, was diagnosed with stage three non-Hogdkin's Lymphoma in October 2013 and, after two failed cancer treatments, was given just six months to live. With her life hanging in the balance, she entered a clinical trial therapy for an immunotherapy cancer treatment called alled CAR-T. Now, at 36, the mother-of-three has been in remission for more than two years and said that treatment saved her life and is the 'future of medicine, but it isn't a walk in the park. Mail.

February 24, 2018Japan 24 hour drug kills FLU but not U.S. Japan has a new drug that could kill the flu in 24 hours. So why doesn't the U.S. have it? Xofluza is manufactured by Japanese drug maker Shionogi and won’t hit shelves until at least May - again, in Japan. According to the Wall Street Journal, the drug won’t be available in the U.S. until at least 2019.Currently, the only drug available in the U.S. to fight the flu is Tamiflu, which is taken twice daily over five consecutive days. Tamiflu doesn't kill the flu virus - it just lowers the odds that patients will suffer serious complications, like pneumonia. It may also reduce the duration of the flu by a day, according to the Centres for Disease Control and Prevention. Liveleak.

February 24, 2018MPs have agreed to introduce an opt-out system for organ donation, which the Mirror calls "Max's Law". The paper carries a picture of 10-year-old Max Johnson, who is a heart transplant patient and fronted the paper's campaign. Papers.

February 24, 2018More than half of meat plants audited by the Food Standards Agency (FSA) have had at least one "major" breach between 2014 and 2017, the Guardian reports. The paper says its analysis found 60% of factories in England, Wales and Northern Ireland failed to adhere to hygiene and food safety regulations. Papers.

February 23, 2018Do you see what I see? Researchers harness brain waves to reconstruct images of what we perceive. A new technique developed by neuroscientists at the University of Toronto Scarborough can, for the first time, reconstruct images of what people perceive based on their brain activity gathered by EEG. "It could also have forensic uses for law enforcement in gathering eyewitness information on potential suspects rather than relying on verbal descriptions provided to a sketch artist." "The fact we can reconstruct what someone experiences visually based on their brain activity opens up a lot of possibilities. It unveils the subjective content of our mind and it provides a way to access, explore and share the content of our perception, memory and imagination." MedicalExpress.

February 23, 2018. Incorrect doses or delays in drugs being administered within the NHS. 1 in 5 prescriptions were incorrect resulting in 22,000 unnecessary deaths. Patients have been given incorrect doses, and delays in drugs being administered. Jeremy Hunt said, doctors and nurses must come forward if mistakes are made. ITV News.

February 23, 2018E-Skin keeps vital heart information in handy place. Wearing your heart on your sleeve could make a whole new meaning thanks to an electronic skin that displays an electrocardiogram- a waveform representing heart activity on the back of the hand. Presenting the e-skin at the American Association for the Advancement of Science Annual Meeting in Austin, Texas. Professor Takao Someya of Tokyo University said, displaying medical data on the skin makes information more assessable. Metro.

February 23, 2018Vietnamese coal-fired power plant Vinh Tan 2 dumping toxic metals into ocean. Coal-fired power plants in Vietnam have been dumping millions of tons of toxic metals into waterways. The massive fish kill was caused by water pollution from toxic industrial waste discharged. About 5 million Vietnamese people in four provinces were hurt by the toxic in last year alone. Liveleak.

February 23, 2018. The Daily Mirror continues its campaign for an opt-out organ donation system ahead of the vote in Parliament on Friday. papers.

February 23, 2018The i leads with research showing that medicine mix-ups are costing lives. The paper reports that blunders happen 237 million times in a year. papers.

February 23, 2018The environment secretary will announce a ban on plastic straws to prevent further environmental damage, says the Daily Mail, which hails it as a victory for its campaign to cut the use of plastic. papers.

February 23, 2018. The Times leads with research from Oxford University revealing that anti-depressants do work, but some are more effective than others. papers.

February 22, 2018. A letter containing white powder purporting to be anthrax has been sent to Prince Harry and his fiancĂ©e Meghan Markle. Counter-terrorism officers are investigating, according to UK media , which says the package was intercepted before reaching the couple and the contents were found to be harmless. Sky News.

February 22, 2018Scientists in England have harnessed the power of sound to levitate small objects -  a development that could lead to medical advances. Researchers at the University of Bristol have used ‘acoustic tractor beams’ to suspend items in the air, including ants. The technique appears to have no harmful side effects, so far. The levitating ant crawls away afterwards, seemingly unaffected.  "It's a force field that can apply and do different functionalities," he said. "So, it's like a pair of hands - or a robot pair of hands - except there is no robot. It's purely a force field that's applying the required position, rotation and then moving things into position." Dr Asier Marzo, a researcher at the University of Bristol, said the technology may one day be applied to medicine. Liveleak.

February 22, 2018We should all being eating more fibre. It builds up the population of microbes that live in and around our body but largely our guts, and if you focus on that, it can have an impact on your brain, your mood, blood sugar levels and more. Dr Rupy. ITV This Morning.

February 22, 2018The Times leads with research from Oxford University revealing that anti-depressants do work, but some are more effective than others. Papers.

February 21st 2018. NHS trusts in England are reporting a deficit of more than £1.2bn in the current financial year which is £365m worse than the predicted deficit of £916m. Sky News.

February 21, 2018The WWETT Show – Water & Waste-water Equipment, Treatment & Transport is the world's largest annual trade show for environmental service professionals.The 2017 WWETT show will be held in Indianapolis,Indiana at the Indiana Convention Centre on February 22-25,2017. Steve Wright Show: Radio 2.

February 21, 2018The i leads with the new sex claims to face Oxfam. It reports that 7,000 regular donors have stopped giving money since the Haiti allegations first emerged and that 26 sexual misconduct allegations had since been made. Papers. 

February 21, 2018The Daily Mirror leads with Tom Evans's campaign to keep his ill toddler, Alfie, alive after a High Court judge ruled that life support should be withdrawn. Papers. 

February 21, 2018Dog meat traders reward people for bringing in their unwanted pets. An estimated 30 million dogs are killed for human consumption each year across Asia, in a brutal trade that involves immense animal cruelty. In Indonesia alone, one million dogs are killed annually. The Balinese are usually paid Rp. 50,000 to 80,000 (US$ 3.70 to 5.90) for selling one dog. Poor families will sell their pets to the dog catcher for as little as Rp. 10,000 (US$ 0.70) if the dog can no longer be cared for. For some people, dog-kidnapping has become a major source of income since animals stolen from neighbours or caught for free on the street represent a 100% profit. International campaigns, like the “Dog Meat-Free Indonesia”, raise the profile of this issue and work to enforce laws that will end the trade. Liveleak.

February 20, 2018A man had designed and built a mobile phone app and is called GIVMED and allows anyone in Greece to register their left-over medicines for those who cannot afford to buy. The Greek government and the EU started financially supporting these social pharmacies after the economical crash. they rely on people donating their un-needed medications. BBC World Hacks: BBC World Service.

February 20, 2018. More than 20,000 catch measles as parents shun vaccines. ITV This Morning.

February 20, 2018About 42,000 university academics announced that they would be going on strike in what might be the worst industrial action at universities, reports The Times. Papers.

February 20, 2018Allegations that Oxfam aid workers used prostitutes in Haiti could deter wealthy donors from giving money to bigger charities, the FT reports. It says private bankers and analysts think recent revelations will lead to "greater pressure for due diligence". Papers.

February 20, 2018The Daily Mirror continues highlighting its campaign for opt-out organ donation, leading with footballer Andy Cole's call to MPs ahead of Friday's vote. Papers.

February 20, 2018Toddler given death sentence after battling 11 heart defects defies doctors. A toddler who was given a death sentence after battling 11 heart defects has defied the odds – and now she never stops smiling. Sophia Marshall, was just 18 months old when doctors suggested that her devastated parents, Chantelle and Samuel, both 30, take her home to die. Liveleak.

February 19, 2018Indian man ends up with two hearts after surgery. A 56-year-old man received a life-saving cardiac surgery but ended up with two beating hearts inside his chest. The man, suffering from end-stage heart failure, had been admitted to Apollo hospital in the South Indian city of Hyderabad, to undergo a heart transplant surgery. When a heart of a brain dead 17-year-old donor became available on February 10, Apollo surgeons realised that it was too small for the recipient. “The donor heart was of normal fist-size. The recipient’s heart was the size of a small football,” Dr A.G. Krishna Gokhale said. There was no time to wait for another donor as the patient was in a critical condition. So, the doctors decided to keep the old heart rather than replace it. They cut away a part of the patient pericardium and squeezed the new heart between the right lung and the original heart. Liveleak.

February 19, 2018ASDA and Morrison's issue urgent product recalls over risk to customers. Two items have been taken off the shelves at the popular supermarkets. It has come to light that ASDA’s stocked Laila Mint Sauce contains egg, which is not mentioned on the label, making it a possible health risk for anyone with an allergy or intolerance to egg.The affected product is the one litre version, with a batch code of PR210617C2 and barcode 502058000854. It has a best before date of June 21, 2018. If you have bought the above product and have an allergy or intolerance to egg, do not eat it. Instead return it to the store from where it was bought for a full refund. Cambridge News.

February 19, 2018At one of the largest tech conferences in Israel’s history, about 10,000 investors roamed start-up booths, learned how artificial intelligence can help treat neuro-disorders and visited a doctor’s office of the future. The venue was a February summit hosted by OurCrowd, the Jerusalem-based crowd-funding investment platform. Almost one in five visitors hailed from Asia, where China spends more than $100 billion a year on prescription medicines. Bloomberg.

February 19, 2018South Africa rejoices over rainfall.  After months of drought, the moment rain finally fell in Cape Town was celebrated by people across the city. The city in South Africa has been experiencing three years of drought – and officials have warned. Liveleak.

February 19, 2018The Telegraph says the average person is eating 50% more calories than they realise, according to official estimates. It says men are worst at "kidding themselves" into believing they are eating fewer calories than they actually are. Papers.

February 19, 2018The Mirror highlights its campaign for opt-out organ donation, leading on the story of nine-year-old Keira Ball, whose heart was donated to save the life of a 10-year-old boy, Max Johnson. Papers.

February 18, 2018The mini robot, a tiny rubber-like-thing that can move around the body and deliver drugs where they're needed, or to attack tumours. This is all lab stuff but within a decade the robots could be in a hospital near you. They're made of plastic that contains magnetic particles, so the robots can be controlled outside the body with could that vary with an electromagnetic field and they can do that so accurately that the devices can perform precise movements like walking, or crawl or rolling inside a patient. Researchers at the Maps Planck Institute for Intelligence systems. Inside Science: BBC Radio 4.

February 18, 2018 Swine fever can cause symptoms like haemorrhage fever like Ebola because of the collapse of the circulation system and leakiness of the blood vessels eventually leading to death. Swine fever can be spread by direct contact between pigs or wild boar, but can also be spread by pigs and wild boars eating infected meats or having contact with other infected materials like wild boar carcasses or transport trucks or infected farm equipment or boots. Because its a large DNA virus, it's actually very stable and survives over extended periods in meats for months or even years in the fridge or frozen. So discarded meats can be an infection of any wild boar or pig that eats that. Dr Linda Dickson. An official expert on the virus. BBC World Service.

February 18, 2018As scientists gather this week in New Zealand for the worlds congress on genetics applied to livestock. Were asking why it took that fast-growing fish from the laboratory to the food table. In food crops, genetic technology has been used in commercial production for 25 years and has become widespread although it's not without controversy. And in pharmaceutical production, genetically engineered animals and chickens have been approved. But it seems humans have a harder time swallowing the idea of genetically modification when it comes to food animals. The first genetically engineered livestock was produced in 1985 and since then scientists have produced animals from many different species with a variety of desirable traits, but only the salmon is commercially available. Will that fish be opening up the floodgates and will soon be joined by genetically engineered cows, sheep and pigs? Should we be altering animals in this way? Is genetic engineering a distraction from directly addressing some of the biggest issues in the food system such as economic equality, food waste and animal welfare. What are the risks and is the public ready for it. The Food Chain. BBC World Service.

February 18, 2018The Observer's own investigation has found two-thirds of UK prisons are reportedly providing inmates with "inadequate conditions or unacceptable treatment". Papers.


February 18, 2018. The Trump administration and the US Department of Agriculture proposed a grocery delivery program called the Harvest Box as part of the fiscal year 2019 budget.The program would replace part of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), also known as food stamps. One Trump administration official called the Harvest Box proposal a "Blue Apron-type program," but there are some massive differences between the two ideas. Business Insider.

February 17, 2018. Kieran Veitz, two, was born with a rare heart condition called ectopia cordis that caused her heart, liver and intestines to form outside of her body. The congenital heart defect has only a 10 percent survival rate and occurs in approximately 5.5 to eight births per one million. Kieran spent her first five hours of her life in surgery to put the organs back inside her abdomen, and next six months recovering in the hospital. She's now weeks away from her third birthday at home in Williston. Her parents Caitlin and Brian describe her as a hard-headed, stubborn toddler who loves water and playing with toys. While she's still experiencing some physical delays as a result of all of her time spent on a ventilator, her parents say she will be caught up with her peers by kindergarten. Her abnormality can still be seen through her chest. Mail.

February 17, 2018. The Times says the government has blocked Oxfam from applying for any more government funding until it gets its house in order following the allegations of sexual exploitation. Papers.

February 17, 2018The Mirror interviews transgender jockey Victoria Smith, who hopes to become the first rider to win a horse race as a woman and a man. Papers.

February 16, 2018U.S Research has found that chemicals from everyday house-hold products now contribute to as much as air pollution in cities world-wide as vehicle emissions. Deodorant and shampoos can cause as much as air pollution as cars. Presenter Steve Wright. Radio 2.

February 16, 2018How to save over 130,000 lives each year. I'm talking about cutting emissions from shipping. Sulphur belched out of vessels is a serious health problem for coastal communities around the world. 400.000 premature deaths from lung cancer and cardiovascular disease, and around 14 million childhood asthma cases annually are reckoned to be related to shipping emissions. These are figures in a report just published in Nature Communications. Inside Science: BBC Radio 4.

February 16, 2018Doctors were forced to operate a patient under a mobile phone torchlight after power suddenly went off in the operation theatre. A team of surgeons led by Dr Sunitha were performing a nose reconstruction surgery on a patient who had suffered a dog bite at the Government General Hospital (GGH) in Guntur, South India.The power went off abruptly and the backup generator failed to switch on instantly plunging the operation theatre into darkness. Liveleak.

February 16, 2018. Narelle Krikhoff, 53, from Brisbane, who only started wearing sun-cream at 20 years old, had part of her nose removed when doctor discovered the mark on her nose was actually a cancerous lump. Yet, after being tested, the personal trainer was diagnosed with basal cell carcinoma last month. Mail.

February 16, 2018After Thursday's splash about processed food increasing a person's risk of cancer, the Daily Express give yoghurt eaters a reason to be cheerful. Research published in the paper claims eating two yoghurts a week can cut a person's risk of high blood pressure by up to 30%. Dietician Julia Zumpano tells the paper that original or Greek style of yoghurt are "excellent sources of protein, natural probiotics and calcium". Papers.

February 15, 2018President Donald Trump quietly signed a bill into law Tuesday rolling back an Obama-era regulation that made it harder for people with mental illnesses to purchase a gun. The rule, which was finalized in December, added people receiving Social Security checks for mental illnesses and people deemed unfit to handle their own financial affairs to the national background check database. NBC News.

February 15, 2018January 2018 was warmer than usual across Europe, and far colder than average in southern Russia, central Asia, and across the southern and eastern USA. Data shows last month to be two degrees warmer than average in Europe; the fourth warmest January on record. Our overview on all climate data series for 2017 is now complete with the recent final update for Copernicus. In the southern hemisphere it was a different picture – eastern Australia & southern Africa saw very dry conditions last month. Sea ice coverage was below average at both poles, with Antarctica at its second lowest level on record. Euro news.

February 15, 2018Rose Yarusskaya of Florida, is in her third round of a battle against a rare head and neck cancer that keeps coming back due to an even more rare genetic mutation that keeps her body from fighting tumours. The 38-year-old mother-of-two had to have her forehead replaced by a metal plate (centre and inset), plus another two operations to remove tumours and finish her facial reconstruction, two rounds of chemo that cost her hair (bottom right) and, now, is enrolled in a clinical trial for the handful of cancer-sufferers with her rare genetic deficiency. Mail.

February 15, 2018The dangers of pizza, cornflakes and chocolate bars in raising a person's risk of cancer also features prominently on the front page of the Times. The paper reports French researchers said in a sample group of people who developed cancer, the quarter who ate the most "ultra-processed" food were 23% more likely to get any type of cancer than the quarter which ate the least processed foods. Papers.

February 15, 2018The Daily Mirror continues its campaign to change the law on organ donation, with another moving story uncovered by writer Andrew Gregory. The front page is taken up with a prominent picture of four-year-old girl Aoife and the accompanying text says the child smiling in the sunshine died waiting for an organ donation. In a front page message to its readers, the paper says: "Now we need your help to make sure our politicians listen". Papers.

February 14, 2018Minnie Driver has become the first celebrity to cut ties with Oxfam over the Haiti sexual misconduct scandalEuro News.

February 14, 2018Pain. It is a human experience we all recognise. We know it when we feel it. One in three individuals worldwide are living with some type of pain. It serves a useful purpose. Pain is the ultimate harm-alarm. It is there to keep us out of danger. It warns of damage to ourselves. Pain is relevant to all of us. Even if we don't have chronic right pain now, chances are we've had it in the past, or if we live long enough, we will have it in the future. Addiction to painkilling drugs and the opioid crisis, more than a hundred people are dying from drug overdoses every day.  The most common painful condition in developed countries is lower-back pain. It amounts to about 28% of all chronic painful conditions. The second and third is neck pain and headaches. After that its nerve pain conditions.  The Why Factor: BBC World Service. 

February 14, 2018A pair of conjoined twins, who are fused at head have defied the odds and celebrated their first birthday, but their widowed is still waiting for a miracle to happen so that her twins can be surgically separated. Zainab Bibi, 36, gave birth to Safa and Marva at a hospital. Liveleak. 

February 14, 2018The Times leads on the ongoing scandal at Oxfam, with new claims that the charity hired a man who had already been forced out of another British humanitarian agency over claims that, while working in Liberia, he asked the charity's drivers to drive him to clubs to meet prostitutes to take back to a villa funded by the charity. Papers.

February 14, 2018US scientists have discovered a new family of antibiotics in soil samples. The natural compounds could be used to combat hard-to-treat infections, the team at Rockefeller University hopes. Tests show the compounds, called malacidins, annihilate several bacterial diseases that have become resistant to most existing antibiotics, including the superbug MRSA. Experts say the work, published in Nature Microbiology, offers fresh hope in the antibiotics arms race. Drug-resistant diseases are one of the biggest threats to global health. They kill around 700,000 people a year, and new treatments are urgently needed. BBC News.

February 13, 2018. A study shows inflammatory tablets used to treat arthritis could slash a person's risk of dementia in half, the Daily Express reports. Papers.

February 13, 2018They found that taking a certain drug used in treating arthritis can half the risk of getting dementia. They found that patients taking methotrexate were 48% less likely to develop dementia, and it might slow down the decline for patients with dementia. Dr Chris Steele. ITV This Morning.

February 13, 2018The Daily Star claims health and safety officials have warned people over participating in pancake races, as some could get hurt running on "unpleasant wet and muddy grass". The paper adds the strap headline "Snowflakes ruin yet another tradition" and it's pretty clear it is not talking about the weather conditions. Papers.


February 13, 2018Oxfam continues to make front page headlines and the Daily Telegraph's lead story is the allegation by the charity's former head of safeguarding, Helen Evans, that teenage charity shop volunteers were abused and overseas staff had traded aid for sex. The paper quotes her interview with Channel 4 News, in which she claimed overseas staff had been accused of rape, and abuse of young volunteers by shop managers had been covered up. Papers.

February 12, 2018Nine states censured by EU over illegally high air pollution levels. The Czech Republic is one of nine EU states summoned to Brussels recently to explain what they're doing about illegally high pollution levels. Officials from the nine, including Germany, Spain, France, Italy, Hungary, Romania, Slovakia and the UK,  were censured at an air quality ministerial summit on 30 January. They were warned that if they don't lower their levels they'll be referred to the European Court of Justice - and cases against Bulgaria and Poland have already commenced. EU air quality limits are currently breached in 130 cities in 23 EU countries and every year, more than 400,000 Europeans die prematurely from air pollution. Liveleak. 

February 12, 2018Paraffin-based skin creams routinely used for skin conditions like eczema and psoriasis have caused dozens of deaths. 37 in England since 2010. And those are just the ones that have been reported. Hundreds and thousands of people with conditions like these use these creams without perhaps knowing that they contain the flammable ingredient paraffin. And if they don't change their sheets or clothes regularly, it can soak into the fabric and become a fire-trap. In just seven out of ten 38 paraffin based skin creams have warnings on them. All it takes is one dropped cigarette or aflame form your cooker, and it can become deadly. Presenter Vanessa Feltz. Radio 2.

February 12, 2018A three-month-old Pakistani girl has undergone a life changing surgery in which surgeons removed a lump from her neck that was bigger than her head. Zareena Mangro from Loralai in Pakistan’s Balochistan province was born with occipital encephalocele – a rare condition in which brain fluid bulges out of the skull bone. Liveleak.

February 12, 2018. Data from the world organisation for animal health indicates that this outbreak has already resulted in the death of a million pigs. With a vaccine many years away, we're asking how African swine fever virus can be prevented from spreading west into Europe, and east into China. People think the answer is to build fences between countries, genetically engineering pigs, and bringing in an army to hunt down the disease spreading wild boar. African swine fever virus kills almost all of the domestic and feral pigs and wild boars it infects in 10 days.  The Food Chain. BBC World Service.

February 12, 2018The Financial Times also features the question over Oxfam's government funding on its front page. The paper says the charity could lose £32m of funding if it fails to hand over information about the misconduct of aid workers. Papers.

February 11, 2018Some of Sunday's front pages follow up on the Oxfam allegations that have dominated the news over the past couple of days. The Observer reports that the charity is facing fresh claims of staff involvement with prostitution in a second country, Chad. Oxfam says its staff in Chad lived under a strict curfew and it highlighted its 2011 investigation resulted in the creation of a dedicated safeguarding team. Meanwhile, the paper's lead story focuses on Labour's attack on the privatised water industry, calling the amount in dividends paid to shareholders "scandalous". Papers.

February 10, 2018A scientific mile-stone. Researchers at Edinburgh University in Scotland have managed to grow human eggs to maturity in a laboratory for the very first time. There are potential implications for young girls undergoing cancer treatments which can damage fertility. But, the technique is still at an early stage. Only 10% of the eggs developed fully, and it is not clear yet how viable they are. We've been working on this in our laboratory for 20 years. The Edinburgh team have managed to do what we were trying to do. To find out someone has actually achieved this is a landmark. Its early days when one talks about translating this to patients and patient care. We are still some years away from that. BBC News. 

February 10, 2018The Guardian claims that safety breaches at UK laboratories could have exposed scientists to potentially lethal diseases. It reports that the Health and Safety Executive has investigated mistakes over the past two years that led to lab scientists failing ill. Papers.

February 10, 2018. The Times leads on its Oxfam investigation for a second day. It reports that the charity failed to warn aid agencies about staff caught using prostitutes in Haiti. Oxfam insisted there had been no cover up. Papers.

February 9, 2018The telomeres, the protective structures at the end of our chromosomes. In this lab, they are trying to find a way to rebuild telomeres. If they succeed, they will have created immortal cells, and it might delay the ageing process in all of us. What we have observed is that young cells have long telomeres and old cells have short telomeres and so if we can prevent the cells from continuing to shorten their telomeres, then we will extend the life-span of cells. Inside Science. BBC Radio 4.

February 9, 2018The front page of the Daily Mirror. Its lead story carries the strap line "health service in crisis" and reports figures from NHS England showing a record 1,042 patients had to wait on trolleys last month for more than 12 hours. Papers.

February 9, 2018The Times claims the charity Oxfam covered up the use of prostitutes by senior aid workers in Haiti following the 2010 earthquake. Three men were allowed to resign and four were sacked, a confidential 2011 report revealed, the paper says. Papers.

February 8, 2018. Manila (Reuters) - The International Criminal Court (ICC) has told the Philippines that it has begun a preliminary examination of a complaint accusing President Rodrigo Duterte of crimes against humanity, his spokesman said on Thursday.The complaint, which says Duterte is complicit in the illegal deaths of thousands of Filipinos during his war on drugs, was “a waste of the court’s time and resources” and the examination would be the end of the process, presidential spokesman Harry Roque said. About 4,000 mostly urban poor Filipinos have been killed by police in the past 19 months in a brutal crackdown that has alarmed the international community. Activists believe the death toll is far higher. Duterte has dared it to bring him to trial and said he would rot in jail to save Filipinos from crime and drugs. Reuters.

February 8, 2018US suicides rise after Robin Williams death. The death of Robin Williams has been linked to a rise in suicide rates in the United States. According to a by Columbia University's Mailman School of Public Health the number of people who took their own lives went up by nearly 10 percent after the comic actor's demise. Many were copycat deaths, like Williams, by suffocation. Researchers found that in the five months from August to December 2014 some 18,690 deaths by suicide were recorded - an increase of 9.85 percent from the expected number of cases for the period. The study was published in the scientific journal PLOS One. Williams, the Oscar-winning star of " Good Morning, Vietnam " and " Good Will Hunting " who was beloved for his humour, died in August 2014 at age 63 in a suicide that shocked fans worldwide. LiveLeak. 

February 8, 2018Brave sisters who have lived bedridden all their lives because of rare disease wish to study and make life worth living. A pair of Indian sisters have not led a rare condition that breaks their bones even with the slightest touch, affect their zeal for life. Rakshi and Sonam Hussain, 25 and 21 respectively, have not stepped out of their house in four years. LiveLeak.

February 8, 2018A cookie could kill me’ - Mum’s warning after common ‘secret ingredient’ triggered near-fatal allergic reaction. A mum who could be killed by a cookie has spoken out after a common but little-known ‘secret ingredient’ triggered a near-fatal allergic reaction. Fiona Cooper Smyth went into life-threatening anaphylactic shock in September last year after accidentally eating a tiny amount of the legume lupin, commonly used in baked products. LiveLeak. 

February 8, 2018The i reports hundreds of unaccompanied youngsters with a legal right to come to the UK are stranded in France. The papers says the "children who dreamed of Britain" are "crushed" and prepared to take "extreme risks" to cross the Channel. Papers.

February 7, 2018. Almost one in three evening meals contain no meat  or fish amid the rise of vegetarians, so-called flexitarian's. The nations eating habits are undergoing a remarkable shift said Sean Paul in the Daily Mail earlier, with Britain's young adults shunning meat. Presenter Steve Wright: Radio 2.


February 7, 2018When it comes to building a love that will last, experts say there's one activity all couple should learn to do well together. Marriage therapists say its pretty simple. Happily married couples are comfortable doing nothing together (sometimes). Just hanging out together allows couples to casually communicate.  Presenter Steve Wright: Radio 2.

February 6, 2018. On an average dishcloth, there are 4 billion living germs. Using the washing machines at 40 degrees is not cleaning them - clean it on a very high-temperature wash every month. Tea and bath towels are so dirty because people don't wash their hands properly, then they dry them on the towels which could have salmonella. The fridge should be fully wiped down once a week. Clean bins with a paper towel daily. The herpes virus can be found on dirty bath towels. Clean at least 60 degrees. Lime-scale helps germs to stick to shower curtains so clean every two days. Clean toothbrushes with a mouthwash or hot water regularly. Duvets should be aired daily and washed every three months. Sheets cleaned once-a-week. Vacuum the mattress once a month. ITV This Morning. 

February 6, 2018. The new opportunity of how hydroponics is opening up, and how it might change the world. This salad has been grown hydroponically. With its roots just dangling in water. That means no soil, no fields, and no farms, at least not as you know them. When you take away farms you can grow things in arid deserts, in dense cities, deep underground, and even under water. World Hacks. BBC World Service. 

February 6, 2018Metro leads on Donald Trump's attack on the NHS in a tweet. The paper says the US president sparked a new diplomatic row after saying the health service was "broke and not working". Papers.

February 6, 2018The Times reports that the Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt and the head of the NHS England both intervened in the "transatlantic spat". The paper says Simon Stevens "goaded" Donald Trump with an invitation to visit hospitals so he can see healthcare delivered at half the cost of the US system. Papers. 

February 6, 2018. "You're sick Mr President", is the headline in the Daily Mirror. It says Donald Trump has "blundered again" with his comments on the NHS - wrongly thinking protests against underfunding were anti-health service. Papers. 

February 6, 2018The Daily Mail highlights the £1.7m payments received last year by the chief executive of a company providing taxpayer-funded cars for the disabled. The paper says the money spent by Motability is being questioned by a member of the Commons Treasury committee. Papers. 

February 6, 2018The UK's "big freeze" is the lead for the Daily Express as it reports the country is set for the coldest night in six years. The plunge in temperatures to as low as -15C (5F) has sparked a health alert for the elderly and vulnerable, says the paper. Papers. 

February 5, 2018. British student with Aspergers who is accused of hacking into the FBI's computers punches the air after learning he will NOT face trial in the US. Briton Lauri Love is accused of hacking US defence and intelligence agencies. He has Asperger syndrome and his family said he could not cope with extradition. High Court judges ruled in his favour but suggested he could be tried in the UK. British prosecutors are looking at the case after judges paved way for UK trial. Mail. 

February 5, 2018A cure for baldness could be on the horizon thanks to a chemical used in McDonald’s fries. Scientists have regrown hair in mice using a ‘simple’ technique – using human stem cells. When is the next solar eclipse? This generated fresh follicles capable of sprouting luxurious new locks. Within days the lab rodents had furry backs and scalps. Preliminary experiments suggest the ground-breaking therapy will also work in people. The Japanese team’s breakthrough came after they managed to mass produce ‘hair follicle germs’ (HFGs) in the lab for the first time. These are the cells that fuel follicle development. They are the ‘Holy Grail’ of hair loss research, as they have never been regenerated before. Prof Fukuda said: ‘This simple method is very robust and promising. Jacob Rees-Mogg really has the daggers out for Philip Hammond ‘We hope this technique will improve human hair regenerative therapy to treat hair loss such as androgenic alopecia (male pattern baldness). Metro News.

February 5, 2018. If you’re fond of vaping, cinnamon, vanilla and butter e-cigarette flavours, we have some bad news. Mixing them up is even worse, a new study found. Flavouring chemicals and liquids used in the battery-powered devices are toxic to the white cells in the blood, warn scientists. Exposure can cause significant inflammation to monocytes – the biggest type of white blood cell in the immune system that combat bacteria and viruses. The study, published in the journal Frontiers in Physiology, adds to growing evidence on the harmful health effects of e-cigarettes. Dr Thivanka Muthumalage, of Rochester University, said, ‘Cinnamon, vanilla and butter flavouring chemicals were the most toxic but our research showed mixing flavours of e-liquids caused by far the most toxicity to white blood cells. E-cigarettes may carry health risks, but these are nowhere near the risks of continuing to smoke tobacco. Metro News.

February 5, 2018Lions hunting antelopes, foxes eating rabbits. Our closest animal cousins chimpanzees will catch and eat monkeys when they get the chance, so surly its natural for homophobias to eat meat. Papers.

February 5, 2018The cold temperatures feature on the Daily Express. The paper says the "coldest spell of winter" could last for 10 days with a foot of snow predicted in some parts of the UK by the weekend. It adds the mercury could dip below -14 C.  Papers.

February 5, 2018The Mirror also reports on what it says will be "the coldest week of winter". It carries a warning for drivers of "treacherous conditions".  Papers.

February 5, 2018Seven of the Queen's swans in Windsor may have been struck down by bird flu, the Sun reports. It says scientists are testing the dead birds, which are 10% of the total flock.  Papers.

February 4, 2018The pop singer Lady Gaga has cancelled the last ten dates of her European tour. Because of what she describes as severe pain. She suffers from a condition called fibromyalgia. it characterised by wide-spread muscle pain, so head-to-toe muscle pain. Extrema tenderness to touch, and profound fatigue. BBC News.

February 4, 2018Olympics step up anti-doping measures. Final preparations are under way in Pyeongchang, South Korea, where 2018 Winter Olympic Games are set to open on Friday. Already hard at work, the World Anti-Doping Agency, WADA.The International Olympic Committee (IOC) says the upcoming games will offer the most comprehensive and independent anti-doping measures in Olympic history. Every athlete who does well at a Games knows they are going to be tested at the end of competition. Liveleak.

February 3, 2018The Guardian reports half of all food bought by British families is made with industrial ingredients and packed with additives. It says real food has been replaced by salty snacks, sugary cereals, ready meals and reconstituted meats. The paper adds research shows people in the UK buy more "ultra-processed" food than those in 18 other European countries, with Germany coming second. Sky News: Press Preview.

February 3, 2018The Mirror reports A&E waiting time targets have been scrapped as it says NHS cuts are making them impossible to meet. The paper says the bid to see 95% of patients within four hours has been postponed until April 2019. Sky News: Press Preview.

February 2, 2018The Times refers to pressure on NHS funding on its front page amid claims a loophole in the medicine-supply system saw the health service once charged £1,579 for a single pot of specially-made moisturising cream. The paper says payment records reveal a firm then owned by the parent company of High Street chain Boots billed for a product other firms sold for less than £2. Sky News: Press Preview. 

February 2, 2018The Daily Mirror leads on the result of a poll suggesting 73% of people would be prepared to pay an extra £1 a week to fund the NHS. The paper says 63% of respondents to their survey would be willing to pay 1% more in tax. Sky News: Press Preview. 

February 1, 2018The court of arbitration for sport has over-turned life bans on 28 Russian athletes who failed drugs tests at the Saatchi winter Olympics 2014. They've been told there was not enough evidence against them, but they wont automatically be invited to the winter games in South Korea this month. Radio 2 News.

February 1, 2018The Daily Mirror reports the parents of a brain-damaged boy have won celebrity backing in their battle against doctors ending his life-support. Tom Evans and Kate James from Liverpool are taking their case to the High Court. Sky News: Press Preview.

February 1, 2018 Metro reports a benefits fraudster pretended to be paralysed from the neck down. Brian Matthews, 51, from Penzance, will be sentenced in April after pleading guilty at Truro Crown Court to making false representations and fraud in a case said to involve more than £500,000. Sky News: Press Preview.

Back To top of page. 


January - Archives Home  - March

About TOWP - tinyurl.com/towphealth

No comments: