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Bill Would Allow Federal Funding For Needle Exchange Programs
House Democrats on Friday as part of a spending measure to fund the Departments of Labor and HHS for fiscal year 2010, "unveiled legislation to lift a ban on federal funding for needle-exchange programs, a shift to try to reduce [HIV infections] but one that will probably spark a fight," Reuters/Boston Globe reports (7/11). The ban has been included in the annual spending bill in previous years. House Appropriations Committee Chair David Obey (D-Wis.) said, "Scientific studies have documented that needle exchange programs, when implemented as part of a comprehensive prevention strategy, are an effective public health intervention for reducing [HIV] infections and do not promote drug use" (Reuters, Pelofsky, 7/10). "The move is in keeping with a pledge [President] Obama made during the primaries to remove the prohibition on such funding, although the ban was carried in his budget request this year," CQ Today reports (Wolfe, 7/10). However, "Republicans are girding for a fight over the ban and lawmakers could try to restore it as the legislation moves through the House during the next two weeks," according to Reuters (7/10). The bill also addresses sex education and "appears to continue Democrats" slow march away from funding abstinence-only sex education," CQ reports (7/10).

RCN Launches New Sexual Health Skills Framework
The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) launched new guidance to help sexual and reproductive health nurses to provide the safest, most effective practice.

Sexual Health

Two-thirds Of Publicly-insured Adults Have One Or More Chronic Conditions

Nearly two of every three adult Americans under age 65 who were covered by public insurance from 2005 to 2006 had at least one chronic illness, such as diabetes, heart disease, and kidney disease, according to the latest News and Numbers from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality.

Comparison Is Key To Lower Costs, Better Outcomes From Medications

Patients can expect significant savings and better outcomes from their prescription medications when health care professionals use comparative effectiveness research, according to researchers at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

Younger Men With Advanced Prostate Cancer Have Shorter Survival Times

While young men with prostate cancer have a low risk of dying early, those with advanced forms of cancer do not live as long as older men with similar forms of the disease. That is the conclusion of a new study published in the July 1, 2009 issue of CANCER, a peer-reviewed journal of the American Cancer Society. The paradoxical findings indicate that there may be biological differences between prostate cancers that develop in younger men and those that develop in older men, and that uncovering these differences may help tailor screening and treatment strategies for patients based on age.

News From The American Journal Of Pathology, June 2009

Stromal Caveolin-1 Predicts Breast Cancer Prognosis

Editorial Calls Supreme Court\'s Pregnancy Leave Decision \'Not Just\'

"The Supreme Court keeps finding ways to deny women equal pay and benefits," a New York Times editorial states in response to the court"s 7-2 ruling on Monday that employers are not required to award women credit toward pension benefits for pregnancy leave taken before Congress passed the 1978 Pregnancy Discrimination Act. According to the Times, the ruling reflects reasoning similar to the court"s 2007 decision in which it denied former Goodyear employee Lilly Ledbetter"s "claim for equal pay because it thought she waited too long to file it." In Monday"s decision, the majority "reasoned mainly that the pregnancy leaves predated the 1978 law, and since the law was not retroactive, the discrepancy in benefits was the product of "past completed events that were entirely lawful at the time they occurred,"" the editorial states. It notes that the majority included "two generally reliable votes for equality, Justices John Paul Stevens and David Souter." The editorial continues, "This may sound logical, but it is not just." The editorial says that Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, in writing the dissent, "quite correctly" recognized a company"s "ongoing denial of equal benefits not as past discriminatory behavior that started and ended decades ago, but as a current violation of the act." In a similar way, "Goodyear discriminated against Lilly Ledbetter by maintaining her unequal pay for years, not merely the first time the company underpaid her." The Times calls on Congress to "write corrective legislation" on pregnancy leave (New York Times, 5/21).

Washington Times Opinion Piece, Editorial Discuss DOJ Nominee Johnsen

The Washington Times recently published an opinion piece and an editorial discussing President Obama"s nomination of Indiana University law professor Dawn Johnsen to head the Office of Legal Counsel in the Justice Department. Summaries appear below. ~ Mickey Edwards/William Sessions, Washington Times: The Senate should "act expeditiously to approve" Johnsen"s nomination because "her views on the limits of presidential power are precisely what the Constitution envisions and conservatives have long championed," Edwards, vice president of the Aspen Institute and author of "Reclaiming Conservatism," and Sessions, a partner at the law firm Holland & Knight, write in a Times opinion piece. According to the authors, Johnsen "made her views clear" on the limits of presidential power when she joined a bipartisan group of lawyers that declared that the Office of Legal Counsel should promote "presidential adherence to the rule of law." Edwards and Sessions write that Johnsen is being criticized for "being blunt, unserious and critical of presidential policies." However, these attacks are unwarranted, they write, noting that in the legal profession, "a little blunt talk to a client -- in this case, the president of the United States -- might be required." Edwards and Sessions continue, "What is needed in the Office of Legal Counsel is a person with the constitutional understanding to know that even presidents with whose politics she agrees must obey both the Constitution and federal statutes and who has the gumption to say so, even if the advice won"t be well received" (Edwards/Sessions, Washington Times, 5/21).~ Washington Times: The editorial states that Johnsen "is so radical" that 31 Republican Indiana state senators on Monday sent a letter to Sens. Evan Bayh (D-Ind.) and Dick Lugar (R-Ind.) asking them to oppose her confirmation. The Republican senators called Johnsen"s views supporting abortion rights "extremely radical" and said she often uses "harsh, sensationalizing rhetoric" in her writings on Supreme Court cases, the editorial states. According to the editorial, Johnsen"s "political advocacy shows a profound disregard for the courts" proper role" because she considers the courts "as making up just another political, policymaking branch of government, not as bodies restrained by the Constitution or existing laws." The editorial continues that Johnsen is "guilty" of "asking judges to impose their own policy preferences" in favor of abortion rights "against the dictates of existing constitutional law." The editorial concludes, "Someone with such contemptuous views of the Constitution should not be the Obama administration"s chief constitutional interpreter" (Washington Times, 5/21).

Wall Street Journal Examines Patients\' Confusion Over Coverage Of Preventive Exams

As employers increasingly offer no-cost preventive care as a means of controlling health costs, some people under such plans are being charged for services not deemed preventive by the insurer, the Wall Street Journal reports. According to Watson Wyatt Worldwide, 72% of large employers in 2009 cover 100% of preventive care -- such as physicals, colonoscopies or mammograms -- for employees, an increase from 55% of large companies in 2008. The Journal reports that the charges often result from billing errors or from a physician"s office being unaware of an insurer"s procedures. Charges that are the result of billing errors often can be reversed. However, others -- such as a test or treatment not being defined by the insurer as preventive -- force some patients to "wage a protracted battle" to get the charges reversed, according to the Journal. When unexpected charges appear on patients" bills, physicians and employers often receive complaints but they have little control over how insurers classify treatments. The Journal reports that patients can prevent being charged for preventive services by checking with their insurer before seeking care; asking for specific, covered screenings and treatments at physicians" offices; reviewing explanation of benefits forms supplied by insurers; asking supervisors at insurers to review disputed claims; and seeking help from employees in company human re departments (Wilde Mathews, Wall Street Journal, 5/21).

Green Tea Chemical Shows Potential As Low-Cost Intervention Against Sexual HIV Transmission, Study Says

A chemical found in green tea might be an effective tool against the sexual transmission of HIV, according to a study conducted by researchers at the University of Heidelberg in Germany and published online in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, AFP/Google.com reports. According to the study, green tea polyphenol -- called epigallocatechin-3-gallete, or EGCG -- neutralizes a protein in sperm that aids in the transmission of HIV during sex. The researchers noted that they "recently identified a peptide fraction in human semen that consistently enhanced HIV-1 infection." The study found that EGCG is able to neutralize the sperm protein, known as a semen-derived enhancer of virus infection, or SEVI. The researchers said that SEVI is "an important infectivity factor of HIV." According to the researchers, EGCG "appears to be a promising supplement to antiretroviral microbicides to reduce sexual transmission of HIV-1." The researchers said that because a majority of people living with HIV contract the disease through heterosexual transmission and that 96% of new cases are reported in developing and impoverished nations, the use of green tea in topical creams could be a "simple and affordable prevention method" (AFP/Google.com, 5/19).

Transatlantic Regulatory Integration Of Drug Approval Process Vital For The Global Pharmaceutical Industry, Notes Frost & Sullivan

Regulatory processes differ across continents,

Poor Birth Outcomes Increased By Lower Legal Drinking Age, Study Finds

Amid renewed calls to consider reducing the legal drinking age, a new University of Georgia study finds that lower drinking ages increase unplanned pregnancies and pre-term births among young people.

Delivering Vaccine Through The Skin Could Be The Future For The Prevention Of Ear Infections

An experimental vaccine applied to the surface of the skin appears to protect against certain types of ear infections. Scientists from the Research Institute at Nationwide Children"s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, reported their findings at the 109th General Meeting of the American Society for Microbiology in Philadelphia.

Women With Gestational Diabetes During Pregnancy Have A Substantial And Persistently Elevated Risk Of Type 2 Diabetes Post-Birth

Women who develop gestational diabetes (GD) during pregnancy have a seven-and-a-half times increased risk of developing type 2 diabetes post-birth, which lasts throughout their lifetime. However, there is no agreed policy on the long-term follow up of these women and many do not return for the currently recommended 6-week post-birth diabetes check. An Article in this week"s diabetes special issue of The Lancet says that the strength of the association suggests that both disorders have an overlapping cause-and this should act as an incentive for women to attend the recommended post-birth check. This attendance could be an opportunity to provide advice on diet and exercise, and treatments to delay or prevent onset of diabetes-as well as alerting these women to symptoms of future diabetes, and to alert general practitioners responsible for their long-term care.

Funding For Medical Equipment

Health boards across Scotland will share чЈ30 million in funding for new medical equipment this year.

Autism Spectrum Therapies Offers New Summer Programs & Services For Children With Autism And Their Families In Southern California

Autism Spectrum Therapies (AST), an agency providing behavior therapy and other autism services, now offers new summer programs for children of all ages and their parents. These fun, kid-friendly programs are designed to help children with autism disorders maintain their academic and communication skills over summer vacation and to develop new skills for the upcoming school year.

Dr. Reddy\'s Receives Approval For Three INDs And Announces Reorganization Of Its Drug Discovery Operations

Dr. Reddy"s announced that the first human subjects were successfully dosed in a phase I study with DRL 17822, a selective inhibitor of CETP, for the treatment of dyslipidemia, atherosclerosis and associated cardiovascular diseases. The compound shows potent elevation in HDL-C and reduction of atherosclerotic plaques in animals, and has a clean safety profile in preclinical studies. The two other IND"s are for the treatment of COPD and dyslipidemia.

Planned Improvements Will Reduce Mixed Sex Accommodation Throughout Somerset\'s Community Hospitals, England

Hospital facilities upgrades due for completion by June 2009. Measures to reduce and eventually eliminate mixed sex wards and washing facilities throughout Somerset"s 13 community hospitals are nearing completion. Last year the government pledged to reduce mixed sex accommodation throughout all England"s NHS hospitals. All hospitals have now stepped up their efforts to deliver this goal.

Health Trust Uses Complementary Treatments As Part Of Their "Improving Working Lives" Initiative

Workers in one of the largest PCT"s in the UK have been benefiting from a scheme that is part of the "improving working lives in the workplace" initiative. Since January 2009, training company, Ethos (Education, Training, Health and Online Service Ltd) have been working with staff across all disciplines within the trust including clinical and non-clinical staff on a programme of taster complementary therapy sessions.

Emergency Physicians Don\'t Follow Established Clinical Guidelines For Diagnosing Patients With Possible Pulmonary Emboli

The number of MDCT examinations for suspected pulmonary emboli (PE) is rapidly increasing amongst ER patients, with a decrease in the number of positive studies. This may be due to a failure to adhere to established clinical guidelines for evaluating patients with suspected PE, according to a study performed at the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and Rhode Island Hospital, Providence, RI.

More Effective Cancer Treatment And The Migration Of Modern Man From Africa To Western Eurasia

The Collaborative Research Centre 806 "Unser Weg nach Europa: Kultur-Umwelt-Interaktion und menschliche MobilitГ¤t im SpГ¤ten QuartГ¤r" (Our Road to Europe: Culture-Environment-Interaction and human Mobility in the late Quaternary) will be directed by Professor Dr. JГшrgen of the Department of Pre- and Protohistoric Archaeology. This research centre is looking at the mobility of populations in the last 190,000 years. The focus of research will be the journey of modern man from Africa to Western Eurasia and Europe, in particular. Migration processes, and the exchange of ideas, technology and culture that entails, are an important prerequisite for important developments. The centre"s main aim is to research, using scientific and archaeological methods, how human behaviour, the climate and the environment influenced important population movements. The scientists particularly want to examine the impacts that these factors have had on the actions and reactions of populations such as emigration, immigration and adaptation to new environments. Other universities and institutions are also involved the project. These include: the University of Bonn; RWTH Aachen University; Heidelberg University; the University of Duisburg-Essen as well as the Rhineland Regional Council; the Rheinisches Amt fГшr Bodendenkmalpflege (Rheinland Department for the Preservation and Care of Field Monuments) as well as the Neanderthal Museum in Mettmann.

Breast MRI Detects Additional "Unsuspected" Cancers Not Seen On Mammography Or Ultrasound

Nearly 20% of patients with recently diagnosed breast cancer had additional malignant tumors found only by MRI, according to a study performed at Dartmouth Hitchcock Medical Center.

6,552 Confirmed Swine Flu Cases And 9 Deaths In The USA

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced at the end of the day of 22nd May, 2009, that so far 6,552 humans have been infected with the A(H1N1) influenza virus, also known as swine flu. This new A (H1N2) flu virus originates from pigs and was first identified in April this year. The virus is human transmissible, says the CDC, meaning it spreads from person-to-person, and has sparked a growing outbreak of illness throughout the USA. The CDC stresses that cases of confirmed human infection are occurring all over the world.

Obama Has Larger Pool Of Female Judges To Select From For Supreme Court Nominee

In selecting a Supreme Court nominee, President Obama will have a more diverse pool of judges to choose from than his predecessors did, largely because the number of women on the federal bench has increased dramatically over the past two decades, the AP/Kansas City Star reports. Just two of the 110 justices that have served on the Supreme Court are women: former Justice Sandra Day O"Connor and current Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg. Most of the candidates Obama is considering are women.According to the AP/Star, there are 212 full-time female judges serving in the federal courts, meaning that women make up more than one quarter of the federal judiciary. In contrast, there were about 40 female federal judges during the Reagan administration. In addition, women make up at least 40% of the judges on 22 of the 53 state supreme courts, another likely for nominees. The AP/Star reports that the increase in the number of female judges reflects the rise in the number of practicing female lawyers; women currently account for about one-third of lawyers and nearly half of all law school graduates. Marcia Greenberger, co-president of the National Women"s Law Center, said, "I wouldn"t say the doors have swung open as fully as we would like." She added, "Nonetheless, there are superb women in the judiciary, academia and private practice."The AP/Star also reports that Obama might seek to increase racial diversity on the Supreme Court, as only two of the 110 justices have been black men: current Justice Clarence Thomas and former Justice Thurgood Marshall. There has never been a Hispanic, Asian-American or American Indian justice (Sherman, AP/Kansas City Star, 5/20).

Cole Foundation Injects $2.5 Million To Bolster Leukemia Research

Canada has received new support to recruit some of its best minds in pediatric leukemia research, thanks to the Cole Foundation. The family foundation has generously pledged $2.5 million to support up-and-coming, Montreal-based researchers at the Universitз© de Montrз©al, McGill University and the Universitз© du Quз©bec"s Institut national de la recherche scientifique - Institut Armand-Frappier. The Cole Foundation investment will include:

Novel Herbal Therapy For Men At High Risk Of Prostate Cancer: Results Of Phase I Trial

Results of a phase I clinical trial of a novel herb-based therapeutic called Zyflamend have demonstrated that the therapy is associated with minimal toxicity and no serious adverse events in men at high-risk for developing prostate cancer.

Connecticut House Approves Two Health Insurance Pooling Bills

The Connecticut House on Wednesday approved two separate measures to expand health insurance pooling in the state, the Hartford Courant reports. The first measure would create a public health insurance pool open to all residents. The pool, intended to compete with rather than replace private insurance, would be based on the existing pool for state workers (Keating, Hartford Courant, 5/21). The bill will create a nine-member board of directors to investigate and recommend a plan to guarantee every resident health insurance. The bill also creates four committees that will work with the board and provide advice on electronic health records, medical homes, clinical care guidelines and preventive care. In addition, three task forces will examine obesity, tobacco use and care provider shortages (Stuart, CT News Junkie, 5/20).The cost of plan, known as SustiNet, could be a "sticking point" given the state"s $8.7 billion budget deficit over the next two years, the Courant reports The state Senate and Gov. Jodi Rell (R) will consider the plan next.The second measure would allow local governments, small businesses and not-for-profit groups join the state employee insurance plan. The bill would increase the current pool"s membership from 200,000 to an estimated 300,000. Juan Figueroa, a former state legislator and president of the Universal Health Care Foundation of Connecticut, said, "Both of these plans reduce costs and increase choice. The partnership (pooling) bill has features that SustiNet can build on. The two bills fit hand in glove." Democrats said the second bill would utilize economies of scale to lower costs. Steve Fontana (D), co-chair of the State House Insurance and Real Estate Committee, said, "The larger the pool you have, ... you reduce the volatility and the risk associated with that pool."Opponents say the pooling measure would affect only those who already have coverage. According to House Republican Leader Larry Cafero, "This bill does not solve that problem. If you don"t have it now, you"re not going to have it because of this" (Keating, Hartford Courant, 5/21).

Modifiable Hip Fracture Complications Contribute To Mortality, Institute For Aging Research Finds

Potentially modifiable post-fracture complications, including pneumonia and pressure ulcers, are associated with an increased risk of death among nursing home residents who have suffered a hip fracture, according to a new study conducted by scientists at the Institute for Aging Research at Hebrew SeniorLife.

Study First To Evaluate Prevalence, Impact Of Off Label Chemotherapy In Breast Cancer

At some point during their care, more than one-third of metastatic breast cancer patients receive chemotherapy off label, the legal use of FDA-approved drugs in a different indication than for which they were approved, according to researchers at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center.

International Team Of Scientists Announces The Discovery Of A Remarkably Complete, 47-Million-Year-Old Primate Fossil

Scientists announced in New York the discovery of a 47 million year

Being Overweight With Heart Risk In Mid Life Followed By Weight Loss Linked To More Illness And Higher Risk Of Death Later

Researchers in Finland who tracked the health of over 1,000 men from middle age into old age found that being overweight and having high risk

Almirall Announces Filing Sativex(R) - For Treatment Of Spasticity In Multiple Sclerosis - Regulatory Submission

Almirall announces today that the file for a regulatory submission for Sativex for the treatment of spasticity due to multiple sclerosis has been submitted in UK and Spain under the European decentralised procedure. The UK regulatory authority, the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA), is acting as Reference Member State and has validated the application.

Deadly Skin Cancer Cases Hit Record High

The number of people diagnosed with the deadliest form of skin cancer has crashed through the 10,000 barrier after an alarming rise in new cases, according to the latest Cancer Research UK figures revealed today.

Review: Long-term Use Of Lymphoma Drug Extends Lives

A new Cochrane Library review confirms that years-long use of a drug called rituximab extends the lifespan of people with one of the milder forms of lymphoma.

Lower Blood Glucose Levels Reduce Heart Disease Risk, Says New Research

New research claims that people with diabetes can cut their risk of a heart attack if they lower their blood glucose levels.

Johns Hopkins Patient Safety Program Receives Healthcare Informatics Magazine\'s 2009 Innovator Award

Johns Hopkins Medicine"s patient safety program has earned second place in Healthcare Informatics magazine"s eighth annual Innovator Awards.

HSE Warns Employers About The Safety Of Equipment After Worker\'s Hand Is Damaged By Rotating Blades, UK

The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) is warning employers to ensure they assess the safety of equipment and ensure that it is sufficiently guarded after an employee"s left hand was severely damaged by the rotating blades of a valve that forms part of the extraction system in a metal recycling process.

Elderly Women With \'Dowager\'s Hump\' May Be At Higher Risk Of Earlier Death

Hyperkyphosis, or "dowager"s hump" the exaggerated forward curvature of the upper spine seen commonly in elderly women may predict earlier death in women whether or not they have vertebral osteoporosis, UCLA researchers have found.

Two Types Of Urgency - Overactive Bladder - Urgency Is Not Just Urgency

UroToday.com - "Urgency" is the cornerstone of the diagnosis of overactive bladder (OAB) as well as a common complaint of patients with BPS/IC. What the term actually refers to when used by patients remains problematic and the subject of some controversy. The International Continence Society defines it as a "sudden compelling desire to void that is difficult to defer". The word sudden is designed to differentiate the sensation from the "urgency" that patients with BPS/IC complain of, but the distinction is quite vague in practice. Many believe that it is the reason for the urgency (fear of incontinence vs. pain) that should make the distinction.

Diet To Reduce Mild Hyperoxaluria In Patients With Idiopathic Calcium Oxalate Stone Formation: A Pilot Study

UroToday.com - You pass what you eat! If you eat wisely, passage shouldn"t be painful. This may be especially true for stone formers. To be sure, high fluid intake resulting in a urine output of > 2 liters per day is key; however, what is eaten also plays a role. In this study among 56 hyperoxaluric patients on a low oxalate diet, the institution of a low salt (4-5 grams/day), low animal protein (approximately 20 grams per day vs. a norm of 50 grams per day), and normal calcium diet over a 3 month period, resulted in a statistically significant drop in 24 hour urine calcium (364 to 263 mg/d) and oxalate (50 to 35 mg/d).

Intraoperative Radioguidance With A Portable Gamma Camera: New Technique For Laparoscopic Sentinel Node Localisation In Urological Malignancies

UroToday.com - Our first results of sentinel node mapping with intraoperative radioguidance in urological tumors are described in our abstract. We selected this movie to show the whole imaging procedure. In a patient with prostate cancer, the radiopharmaceutical is injected in 4 depots into the prostate. After tracer administration, planar lymphoscintigraphy is performed after 15 minutes and in 2 hours is followed by a SPECT/CT. After fusion of corresponding SPECT and CT slices, the two-dimensional fusion images show the location of the sentinel nodes.

New Strategies For Cell Therapy To Regenerate Damaged Heart

Research undertaken at the Center for Applied Medical Research (CIMA) and the University Hospital of Navarra has shown that, in animal models, stem cells derived from bone marrow and adipose tissue enhance heart function after a cardiac attack. In concrete, bone marrow cells act on the damaged tissue, while fatty cells have the ability to transform themselves into both blood vessels and cardiac cells. The results obtained with rats are maintained over a long time period, explained biochemist Mr Manuel Mazo, principal researcher.

Gene Links Gum Disease And Heart Attack Risk

Scientists in Germany have discovered a gene that links the gum disease periodontitis and increased risk of coronorary heart disease (CHD) and

Viral Meningitis Warning For This Bank Holiday Weekend And Summer

With temperatures predicted to soar this bank holiday weekend and summer, the UK"s longest established meningitis charity - the Meningitis Trust - is urging people to be aware of the signs and symptoms of the disease, as cases are known to peak during hot summers.

The Lung Association Celebrates Quitters For World No Tobacco Day 2009

On World No Tobacco Day, The Lung Association is celebrating those who have successfully quit smoking and sharing their success stories in the hopes of motivating others to quit.

Alzheimer\'s Society Comment On New Data Observing The Cost Effectiveness Of Aricept (donepezil)

New research presented at the annual meeting of ISPOR suggests that prescribing Aricept on diagnosis of either mild or moderate Alzheimer"s disease would save the NHS money.

Country GP Uses Household Drill To Save BoyтЂ¦and Shows Why Helicopters Cannot Replace Local Doctors, Australia

The Rural Doctors Association of Australia (RDAA) says two country doctors" skills last Friday-in saving

Cambridge Consultants Advises Cambridge University\'s Tech Transfer Arm On IP Strategy

A multidisciplinary team of technology strategists and scientists from Cambridge Consultants has provided advice to Cambridge Enterprise Ltd., regarding potential applications for microdroplet technology in a high-growth sector of the drug discovery market, currently valued at US$140m.

Government Responds To Archer Inquiry

The Government today responded to the independent inquiry into contaminated blood supplies in the 1970s and 1980s.

Haemophilia Society React To Government Response To The Archer Report

Reacting to the Government"s response to the Archer Report (http://www.archercbbp.com) into the contaminated blood and blood product disaster Chris James, Chief Executive of the Haemophilia Society said:

Medimix International To Exhibit At American Society of Clinical Oncology AGM

Medimix International, a leader in global healthcare marketing research for life sciences industry, announced that it will be exhibiting at the 45th AGM of the American Society of Clinical Oncology, which will take place in Orlando, Florida from May 29-June 2, 2009. The annual ASCO meeting is considered to be the premier educational and scientific event in the oncology community, a forum for cutting-edge scientific and educational developments in oncology with a focus on personalizing cancer care.

Matrox, QUBYX And Datacolor Support 13-bit Calibration And Luminance Uniformity Correction For Medical Displays

Matrox Graphics Inc., the leading manufacturer of specialized graphics solutions, announced that QUBYX has integrated DATACOLOR"s Spyder3 colorimeter into its PerfectLUM medical display calibration software. In addition, the calibration software will also support the Matrox Xenia(tm) Series onboard 13-bit Gamma and Digital Luminance Correction (DLC(tm)) technology. By combining each company"s extensive and high quality solutions, Matrox has created a comprehensive package for the medical display and imaging marketplace that will ultimately save time, money, and improve efficiencies in patient care.

Martinez: Medicare Fraud Fight Worthy Of Joint Agency Operation

U.S. Senator Mel Martinez (R-FL) commended the Departments of Justice (DoJ) and Health and Human Services (HHS) for their decision to focus on detecting, preventing, and prosecuting Medicare fraud cases.

California\'s AIDS Funding Cuts Would Be \'Catastrophic,\' Says AHF

AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the nation"s largest non-profit HIV/AIDS healthcare provider, today criticized California state officials for planning draconian budget cuts that will jeopardize the public health by eliminating all funding for AIDS care and treatment from the state"s General Fund. The state action came on the heels of Tuesday"s state election where five ballot measures to address the state"s burgeoning budget deficit were voted down and; as a result, in response to the $21 billion and growing deficit now facing California.

ReachMD Launches CME iPhone APP

ReachMD, which provides medical news and information to healthcare practitioners, is raising its profile with the Continuing Medical Education, or CME, application for the Apple iPhone and iPod touch. This is the first CME application that lets users listen to all ReachMD Continuing Medical Education content, get regular updates on new Continuing Medical Education content and take Continuing Medical Education tests for credit, all from their iPhone or iPod touch.

Senesco Announces H1N1 Influenza Survival Test Results In Mice

Senesco Technologies, Inc. ("Senesco" or the "Company") (NYSE Amex: SNT) reported results of H1N1 mouse influenza survival studies that were conducted in Dr. William Scheld"s lab at the University of Virginia School of Medicine. Mice treated with an siRNA against Senesco"s Factor 5A gene had a 52% survival rate as opposed to a 14% survival rate for mice that received no treatment or a control siRNA.

CEL-SCI Developing Immune-Based Treatment Against Swine And Other H1N1 Flu Viruses Using Proprietary L.E.A.P.S. Technology

CEL-SCI Corporation (NYSE AMEX: CVM) announced that it is developing an immune-based treatment for the "swine flu and related H1N1" flu viruses, utilizing its proprietary L.E.A.P.S.(TM) (Ligand Epitope Antigen Presentation System) vaccine technology. The Company plans to utilize the expertise and knowledge it has gained from developing protective and therapeutic vaccines utilizing L.E.A.P.S. to develop a therapeutic treatment based upon the technology for people infected with the swine and H1N1 flu viruses. CEL-SCI has already commenced pre-clinical testing.

Vaxart Begins Animal Testing Of H1N1 Flu Vaccine Candidate

Vaxart, Inc., a biotechnology company focused on the development of oral vaccines, announced today that the company has created a candidate vaccine for H1N1 influenza (swine flu). On Saturday, May 23, Vaxart began testing for immune responses in animals, just 25 days after initiating the project. The company will compare performance of the research-grade H1N1 vaccine to its successful avian flu vaccine as a first step towards potential human clinical testing.

State Assembly Approves Hayashi Legislation To Protect Consumers From Insurance Policy-Rescission

The California State Assembly has approved legislation by Assemblywoman Mary Hayashi (D-Hayward) that would prevent health plans and insurers from canceling a health insurance policy 18 months after the policy was issued. Assembly Bill 108 (Hayashi) passed on a 48-28 vote.

Medicare: A Critical Element Of Health Care Reform

A panel of senior advocates and health policy experts gathered on Capitol Hill

Phase III Data Showed Novartis Investigational Bronchodilator QAB149 Significantly Improved Lung Function In COPD Patients

The Novartis investigational bronchodilator QAB149 (indacaterol) met the primary efficacy endpoints of improved lung function compared to placebo at 12 weeks in three pivotal phase III studies in chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) patients. In secondary endpoints of these studies, QAB149 demonstrated clinically relevant lung function improvements within five minutes of the first dose, lasting for 24 hours in COPD patients.

USC Researchers Uncover Mechanism That Allows Influenza Virus To Evade The BodyВрs Immune Response

California (USC) have identified a

Results From A European Caregiver Survey Highlight The Impact Of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) On The Child And The Family

Shire plc (LSE: SHP, NASDAQ: SHPGY), the global specialty biopharmaceutical company, today announced results of a European survey that found a child"s Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) symptoms at school were a key concern for parents, yet outside of school their child"s ADHD also had significant impact on parents" personal time.1 The survey also revealed key findings surrounding parents" role in assessment and treatment for their child.1 Additionally, the survey suggested that informational needs may not be met adequately for these children with ADHD and their families.1 Conducted in partnership with ADHD advocacy groups in four EU countries, the survey analysed parental impressions surrounding the impact of ADHD on their child, themselves and their family, as well as their child"s ADHD treatment plan.

The Economics Of Methadone Dispensing

Despite reports of pharmacies providing cash incentives to patients to provide them with methadone, the current system is still valid, writes Dr. Aslam Anis from the University of British Columbia in a commentary. It may not be detrimental to the care of those receiving treatment for addiction.

UK Charity Tackles Health Risk For Children - Engaging Website Launches To Educate Children At A Crucial Age In Bone Development

Research from the National Osteoporosis Society has revealed that almost half (49%)* of young people do not know that there are steps they can take to keep their bones healthy. This knowledge gap puts them at risk of osteoporosis and fractures in later life.

Access To Dentistry Not Just About Numbers, Says British Dental Association

The Department of Health must start to think beyond simple numerical measures of access to dentistry if it is serious about reducing the oral health inequalities of England"s population, according to the British Dental Association (BDA). The BDA"s message comes after figures published today by the NHS Information Centre demonstrated a small recovery in the number of people able to access NHS dental care.

Synosia Therapeutics Begins Phase I Trial Of A New Generation Treatment For Cognitive Impairment In Alzheimer\'s Disease And Schizophrenia

Synosia Therapeutics announced today that it has started a Phase I clinical trial of SYN-120, its new generation 5-HT6 antagonist under development for the treatment of cognitive impairment associated with Alzheimer"s and schizophrenia. The study will assess the safety and tolerability of single ascending doses of SYN-120 in healthy volunteers.

First-Line Nab-Paclitaxel Is Superior To Docetaxel For Metastatic Breast Cancer

CHICAGO, May 26, 2009 - New data show that nab-paclitaxel (AbraxaneR for Injectable Suspension) prolongs investigator-assessed, median progression-free survival (PFS) by almost seven months versus the highest standard dose of docetaxel in women with metastatic breast cancer.

Academic Physicians Who Spend Time On Their Most Meaningful Work Pursuits Appear To Have A Lower Risk Of Burnout

Faculty physicians at academic medical centers may be less likely to experience burnout if they spend at least one day per week on the aspect of their work that is most meaningful to them, according to a report in the May 25 issue of Archives of Internal Medicine, one of the JAMA/Archives journals.

Boost Your Mood At Least Half The Day With Physical Activity

The mood-enhancing effects of exercise are well documented, but a study presented at the American College of Sports Medicine"s 56th Annual Meeting in Seattle suggests the benefits may last much longer than previously thought.

Allergan Receives Complete Response Letter For BOTOX(R) (Botulinum Toxin Type A) For Treatment Of Upper Limb Spasticity In Adults

Allergan, Inc. (NYSE:AGN) today announced it has received a complete response letter from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) regarding the Company"s Supplemental Biologics License Application (sBLA) for BOTOX (Botulinum Toxin Type A) to treat upper limb spasticity in post-stroke adults. Allergan submitted its sBLA for this indication in the third quarter of 2008.

Study Links Recurrence Of Abnormal Cervical Cells To Age, Treatment Type

Older women, women with a higher grade of precancerous cells and women who undergo a freezing procedure known as cryotherapy to remove abnormal cervical cells are at a higher risk than other groups that the problem cells will return or develop into cervical cancer, according to a study published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, Reuters reports. For the study, Joy Melnikow of the University of California-Davis and colleagues compared 37,000 women who were treated for cervical intraepithelial neoplasia -- abnormal cervical cells -- from 1986 through 2000 with 71,000 women who had no history of abnormal cervical cells.The researchers found that the risk of cervical cancer and recurrence of medium to severe degrees of CIN was highest for women who were older than age 40, who had been previously treated for severe CIN or whose abnormal cells were treated using cryotherapy. The women underwent cone biopsies a surgical procedure to remove abnormal cells were least likely to have a recurrence of CIN. According to Melnikow, recurrence was most likely to occur within the first six years after treatment. Melnikow said that women who have been treated surgically have higher risks of bleeding and preterm labor. Therefore, younger women who are planning to become pregnant might prefer cryotherapy, she said, adding that younger women"s "risk of recurrence is lower, and a recurrence can be treated again" (Steenhuysen, Reuters, 5/12).

Biological Markers Identified That May Indicate Poor Breast Cancer Prognosis

A team of researchers has found an association between breast cancer survival and two proteins that, when present in the blood in high levels, are indicators of inflammation. Using data from the Health, Eating, Activity and Lifestyle (HEAL) study sponsored by the National Cancer Institute, part of the National Institutes of Health, the researchers found that breast cancer patients with elevated levels of C-reactive protein (CRP) and serum amyloid A (SAA) were approximately two to three times more likely to die sooner or have their cancer return than those patients who had lower levels of these proteins, regardless of the patient"s age, tumor stage, race, body mass index, or history of previous cardiovascular issues. The results of this study were published online, May 26, 2009, in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

Less-Toxic Drug Prolongs Survival In Metastatic Breast Cancer

Research from the Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine has found that a less toxic, solvent-free chemotherapy drug more effectively prevents the progression of metastatic breast cancer and has fewer side effects than a commonly used solvent-based drug.

\'Pro-choice Community\' Should Find New \'Way Of Talking About Reproductive Freedom,\' Opinion Piece Says

"Most of the push-back" from antiabortion-rights advocates to a recent e-mail message from author Judy Blume on behalf of Planned Parenthood -- which asked mailing list subscribers for donations -- was generated by an article in the antiabortion-rights publication LifeNews, columnist Meghan Daum writes in a Los Angeles Times opinion piece. The article put a "heavy, misrepresentative spin" on Blume"s message, which urged donors to "do all [they] can to support" the increasing number of women turning to Planned Parenthood centers for health care during the economic downturn.The LifeNews article said, "Blume notes how more women are seeking abortions from Planned Parenthood because of the difficult economy, and she urges readers of the e-mail to use that as a reason to support the abortion business." According to Daum, "this is just the kind of thing that makes abortion-rights advocates apoplectic," noting that abortion-rights advocates "fired-back" in the "blogosphere ... imparting the statistic about abortion making up only 3% of Planned Parenthood"s services and pointing out that many of the women being yelled at by picketers in clinic parking lots aren"t even pregnant but, rather, trying to avoid getting pregnant." Daum continues that the organization, much like Blume, "occupies a clear position on the post-Roe cultural map," adding, "Generally speaking, if you"re on board with abortion rights, you"re on board with Planned Parenthood." In addition, if you are against abortion rights, the "organization is the headquarters of Godlessness," she adds. Daum writes that it is not difficult to see why Planned Parenthood enlisted Blume -- an "icon of 1970s-era feminism and its efforts on behalf of sex education and women"s health" -- because she conjures "nostalgia for the early days of the fight that makes pro-choicers want to keep fighting today."Daum writes that as she watched this "saga unfold in [her] inbox," she was "struck by a troubling question. Even though Blume may not be associated with abortion in and of itself is there something about her persona that signals a lack of dispassion about its ramifications? Is she reminding people of a time when, in the relief of Roe being decided, there was a cultural perception that abortion was a simple procedure that needn"t come with attendant emotional baggage?"Daum adds that there is "no denying that the language and overall tone around abortion has changed. Despite what many pro-life groups seem to think, most abortion-rights advocates prefer "safe, legal and rare" to "no big deal."" According to Daum, President Obama, "pro-choice though he is, is hardly strident -- and even a little evasive -- on the issue." She adds that Obama favors language about reducing the need for abortions and "finding common ground with the other side." Daum notes that the pop cultural arena "has become downright allergic to the issue" of abortion, with a recent movie coining the term "shmashmortion" because the characters "can"t even get the word out." Daum adds that although Blume "was undoubtedly effective" at bringing in funding for Planned Parenthood, perhaps what might have been "even more radical is if the pro-choice community could find a way of talking about reproductive freedom that neither reverts to the perceived casualness of the 1970s nor panders to the "shmashmortion" dialect of today. "Safe, legal and rare" comes close. But "safe, legal, rare and a big deal" might be even better" (Daum, Los Angeles Times, 5/14).

News From The Journal Of The National Cancer Institute, May 26, 2009

Effects of MYC Protein and CIP2A in Gastric Cancer

New Broad-Spectrum Vaccine To Prevent Cervical Cancer Induces Strong Responses In Animals

Mice and rabbits immunized with a multimeric-L2 protein vaccine had robust antibody responses and were protected from infection when exposed to human papillomavirus (HPV) type 16 four months after vaccination, according to a new study published in the May 26 online issue of the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.

Parents Say Their Son Can Be Given Chemotherapy After Initially Refusing Treatment

Daniel Hauser, 13, who has Hodgkin"s lymphoma, and ran away with his mother after she refused chemotherapy treatment, is to be allowed treatment, his parents said. Daniel"s mother, Colleen Hauser, said she had wanted him to be treated with natural remedies for religious reasons. Hodgkin"s Lymphoma or Hodgkin"s Disease is a cancerous (malignant) growth of cells in the lymph system.

Are We Genetically Programmed To Care About The Long-Term Future ?

Humans may be programmed by evolution to care about the future of the environment, suggests research just published.

International Health Organizations Urge More Funding For Yellow Fever Vaccine Stockpile

The International Coordinating Group (ICG) on Yellow Fever Vaccine Provision is warning that the global emergency stockpile of yellow fever vaccine for the world"s most vulnerable populations in Africa is under threat.

MS Society Scotland Supports Shine On Scotland Campaign

The MS Society Scotland has backed a school boy from Glasgow whose campaign aims to seek support for the use of vitamin D in helping to prevent the onset of multiple sclerosis (MS).

Kinex Pharmaceuticals To Present At ASCO 2009 Annual Meeting

Kinex Pharmaceuticals will present results from a Phase 1 clinical study with KX2-391, at the ASCO 2009 Annual Meeting in Orlando, on May 29, 2009. The study was carried out at MD Anderson, Roswell Park Cancer Institute (RPCI) and Fox Chase Cancer Center. Dr. Alex Adjei, the Principal Investigator from RPCI will deliver the presentation entitled "Results of a phase I trial of KX2-391, a novel non-ATP competitive substrate-pocket directed SRC inhibitor, in patients with advanced malignancies."

Child Deaths Drop Sharply

Deaths of children aged under five years have dropped by 27% globally since 1990, according to the latest World Health Organization (WHO) estimates. But in WHO"s first progress report on the health Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) released today in the World.

New York Times Series Examines Maternal Mortality In Tanzania

The New York Times on Sunday examined maternal mortality in Tanzania, in the opening of a three-part series on maternal mortality in Africa. According to the Tanzanian Ministry of Health, the country has a maternal death rate of 578 per 100,000 births, though the World Health Organization puts the count at 950 maternal deaths per 100,000 births. Roughly 13,000 Tanzanian women die of pregnancy- or childbirth-related causes annually, giving it "neither the best nor the worst record in Africa," the Times reports. Tanzania is one of the world"s poorest countries and faces shortages in several areas -- including health workers, drugs, equipment and infrastructure -- that contribute to maternal mortality.The Times profiled obstetrical care at a rural hospital in Berega, Tanzania, that typifies efforts to reduce maternal mortality in Africa. Facing a shortage of doctors and nurses, the hospital has been training "assistant medical officers" to perform caesarean sections and other procedures. Meanwhile, the government also is attempting to train more assistants and midwives, build more clinics and nursing schools, offer housing to attract health workers to rural areas and provide places for pregnant women to stay closer to hospitals.According to the Times, many women who die in childbirth are young and healthy, and most maternal deaths are preventable with basic obstetrical care. The five leading causes of maternal death are bleeding, infection, high blood pressure, prolonged labor and complications resulting from abortions, the Times reports. In discussing maternal mortality, experts often refer to what are known as "the three delays": a woman"s delay in going to the hospital, the time spent traveling there and the hospital"s delay in starting treatment upon the woman"s arrival. Although only around 15% of births have dangerous complications, the problems are almost impossible to predict, and seemingly normal labors can quickly progress into serious emergencies. Worldwide, more than 536,000 women die annually from pregnancy or childbirth, according to WHO (Grady, New York Times, 5/24).

Des Moines Register Examines Planned Parenthood Of Greater Iowa 75 Years After Founding

The Des Moines Register on Friday profiled Planned Parenthood of Greater Iowa, which marks its 75th anniversary this year. Established in 1934 as the Iowa Maternal Health League, PPGI now includes 17 clinics offering a range of reproductive health services, as well as an education and re center. The organization originally was founded by four women with a mission of providing birth control for low-income married women. Over the years, it frequently "has been on the forefront of advances in reproductive history," according to the Register. For example, in the early 1960s, PPGI became the first provider in the Midwest to offer the oral contraceptive Ortho-Novum, leading to a more than 350% increase in its number of patients.Although antiabortion-rights advocates often discuss Planned Parenthood in relation to abortion services, the vast majority of its services are not abortion-related. Jill June, president and CEO of PPGI, said that although the organization"s services have greatly expanded since its founding, the "needs people have for the services we provide and the challenges we face in meeting those needs haven"t changed." She added, "People still face unintended pregnancies despite great technological advances in birth control and efforts to make contraception more available and to normalize contraception use" (Challender, Des Moines Register, 5/22).

UPMC Sports Medicine To Host "Enhance Your Workout," A Free Workshop


Opinion Pieces React To Obama\'s Nomination Of Sotomayor To Supreme Court

Several newspapers on Wednesday included editorials and opinion pieces on President Obama"s nomination of Judge Sonia Sotomayor to the Supreme Court. Summaries appear below. ~New York Times: Obama "seems to have made an inspired choice" in selecting Sotomayor as his nominee because she "has an impressive judicial record, a stellar academic background and a compelling life story," a Times editorial states. According to the editorial, "Based on what we know now, the Senate should confirm her so she can join the court when it begins its new term in October." The editorial notes that, "Conservative activists have already begun trying to paint Judge Sotomayor as a liberal ideologue, but her carefully reasoned, fact-based decisions indicate otherwise." The editorial continues, "If Judge Sotomayor joins the court, it will be a special point of pride for Hispanic-Americans," and "will also bring the paltry number of female justices back to two." It adds, "Judge Sotomayor, though, is more than just a distinguished member of two underrepresented groups. She is an accomplished lawyer and judge, who could become an extraordinary Supreme Court Justice" (New York Times, 5/27).~Gerard Magliocca, New York Times: In addition to sharing Obama"s "experience and intellect," Sotomayor "also mirror"s the president"s measured temperament," Magliocca, a law professor at Indiana University, writes in a Times opinion piece. Magliocca writes that he has known Sotomayor for 13 years and notes that although he is a conservative and has at times been "at odds with" Sotomayor professionally, he does not dispute her qualifications. According to Magliocca, "For those of us who think that intellectual rigor and fairness are the crucial factors" to be a Supreme Court justice, "no matter which party the president hails from, there is no question that Judge Sotomayor should be confirmed" (Magliocca, New York Times, 5/27).~USA Today: Upon hearing that Sotomayor was Obama"s nominee, Republican critics "quickly insisted that the Senate assure itself that Sotomayor would not make rulings based on her "personal politics, feelings and preferences,"" a USA Today editorial states. According to the editorial, "To some extent, the entire argument is overblown. People inevitably are the product of their experiences, and they can hardly shed their history and character at the courthouse door." The editorial continues, "That is why the court is enriched by having an eclectic mix of justices who can bring differing perspectives to bear on the case at hand." The editorial concludes, "Sotomayor"s education and experience make her far more than a political twofer who allowed Obama to check the "female" and "Hispanic" boxes. But there"s a limit to the application of empathy and heritage to the law, and her confirmation hearings will be an opportunity for her to spell out exactly where she believes that line falls," (USA Today, 5/27).~ Steven Waldman, Wall Street Journal: "Everyone seems to assume" that Supreme Court nominee Sonia Sotomayor is "ardently for abortion rights," but there is "stunningly little information about her abortion views -- and what we do know hardly paints her as a pro-choice activist," Waldman, president and editor-in-chief of Beliefnet.com and author of "Founding Faith," writes in a Journal opinion piece. He continues that Sotomayor has ruled only on three cases "indirectly related to abortion," and each time ruled in a way preferred by abortion-rights opponents, "albeit for reasons unrelated to the merits of abortion." Although Sotomayor"s decisions in the cases were related "to matters of constitutional law and criminal procedure, ... at a minimum, it showed that whatever her abortion views, it didn"t produce some powerful inclination against the pro-life position," according to Waldman. "Now all of this might not mean anything. She may prove to be a strong advocate of Roe v. Wade. But it"s telling that the abortion interest groups took sides without knowing anything about her abortion

Discovery Of Faulty Genes Could Reveal Risk Of Bone Disease

The discovery of faulty genes by Edinburgh researchers could help people with Paget"s disease, a painful bone condition. Dr Omar Albagha has found three genes associated with the disease which, if detected early enough in people, could hasten diagnosis and treatment.

Stirling Products Limited (ASX:STI) Gets Approval For TB And HIV Treatment "Immunoxel" In South Africa

Australian healthcare company Stirling Products Limited (ASX:STI) is pleased to announce another milestone in the expansion of the licensed (pending joint venture approval) botanical products to markets outside of Ukraine. Immunoxel (Dzherelo) has been granted approval in South Africa. This approval will allow immediate sales of the phytoconcentrate as an immune adjuvant for TB and HIV treatment.

Stimulus Funds Help Community Health Centers Expand Services, Remain Open

Nearly 1,200 community health centers nationwide have received a boost of funding from the federal economic stimulus package, which is helping some of the facilities that were on the verge of closing remain open and continue treating low-income and uninsured patients, PBS" "NewsHour with Jim Lehrer" reports. More people are seeking care at such facilities as they lose their jobs and employer-sponsored health insurance as a result of the economic recession. At the same time, funding for the centers has dropped because of cutbacks in state and local funding and lower not-for-profit donations and grants. The stimulus package provides a total of $20 billion for clinics to maintain and increase services. "NewsHour" profiles community health centers in Lorain, Ohio, which likely would have closed without the additional funds from the economic stimulus package (Bowser, "NewsHour with Jim Lehrer," PBS, 5/26).

Psychiatrists Begin Revising Diagnostic Manual For Mental Illnesses

Over the next 18 months, psychiatrists will revise the American Psychiatric Association"s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, which is used to determine how U.S. residents" mental health is assessed, diagnosed and treated, the Los Angeles Times reports. Since the manual was last updated in 1994, technologies such as brain imaging and new understandings of the biological and genetic causes of many disorders have "almost guaranteed alterations" in the number of mental disorders included in fifth DSM volume, which is scheduled to be published in 2012, the Times reports.While some psychiatrists argue the manual should be broad enough to determine treatment for those who need it, others are concerned that if too broad, the manual will diagnose conditions that would otherwise be considered normal human behavior. David Kupfer, a psychiatrist at the University of Pittsburgh"s Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinics and chair of the DSM-V task force, said the DSM-V will recognize variations of disorders that have not been seen as part of "classic" illnesses, and will describe disorders in more detail, including how they differ based on race, gender, age, physical health and culture. Health insurance companies use the manual to determine coverage options for certain treatments.People involved in the revisions said the manual will be a better reflection of mental conditions of "real" people, rather than just those with the most severe cases of disorders or obvious diagnoses, the Times reports (Roan, Los Angeles Times, 5/26).

California Official Details Proposed Health Care Cuts In Schwarzenegger\'s Budget Plan

California Department of Finance Chief Deputy Director Ana Matosantos on Tuesday discussed Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger"s (R) plans to address the state budget deficit in part by cutting Medi-Cal spending and eliminating Healthy Families, the Sacramento Bee reports. Medi-Cal is California"s Medicaid program, and Healthy Families is the state"s version of CHIP. Matosantos spoke at a Joint Legislative Budget Committee hearing (Yamamura, Sacramento Bee, 5/27).The suggested cuts to health care programs are part of the governor"s proposal to address the state"s projected $24.3 billion budget deficit for fiscal year 2009-2010 (Wiegand, Sacramento Bee, 5/23). Schwarzenegger last week outlined two budget proposals to address the state"s budget problems. One of the proposals addressed the situation if California voters approved a set of special ballot measures intended to provide funds for FY 2009-2010 (Kaiser Daily Health Policy Report, 5/18). However, voters last week rejected five of the six measures on the May 19 statewide ballot, including three propositions that would have let the state use special accounts for mental health services and early childhood education (Yi/Buchanan, San Francisco Chronicle, 5/20). The state would have faced a $15.4 billion budget deficit if voters had approved the measures (Ellis/Schultz, Fresno Bee, 5/20). Schwarzenegger and legislative leaders were scheduled to begin closed door budget negotiations on Tuesday, and a small group of state senators and Assembly members will hold a series of public sessions on the budget on Wednesday (Bailey, Los Angeles Times, 5/20). Democrats scheduled a press conference for Tuesday to announce their timeline for passing a budget, and Republicans also are set to release their plans for advancing a budget agreement.The San Francisco Chronicle reports that California will not have sufficient cash on hand to make some payments by late summer if a budget agreement is not reached quickly (Wildermuth, San Francisco Chronicle, 5/20).

World Cup Campaign To Build Centers To Provide HIV/AIDS Education, Other Services To At-Risk African Youth

Authorities in South Africa have begun construction of one of the 20 planned Football for Hope centers in Africa -- part of a 2010 World Cup campaign called "20 Centers for 2010" aimed at reducing the prevalence of HIV/AIDS, poverty and crime in local communities -- the AP/Google.com reports. The center under construction in South Africa"s Khayelitsha township will include a soccer field, community center and after-school programs that will focus on sex education and HIV/AIDS education. The International Federation of Football Association, or FIFA, in alliance with Streetfootballworld, a network of development groups, is providing the campaign with $10 million in funding. Ghana, Kenya, Mali, Namibia, Rwanda and other African countries will be home to the remaining 19 centers.According to FIFA President Joseph Blatter, the campaign "emphasizes the power of football far beyond the boundaries of the pitch." He added that the centers will "provide a platform for communities to address social issues such as children"s rights, education, health, HIV/AIDS prevention and will leave a legacy for Africa that will last long after the final whistle of the 2010 FIFA World Cup has been blown." Helen Zille, premier of the Western Cape Province, said construction of the center in the township "shows what we can do when we focus on getting things right rather than concentrating on what"s wrong," adding that she hopes the center is successful with its HIV/AIDS education efforts. The center will be run by Grassroots Soccer, an HIV/AIDS education organization that uses the sport to educate youth. Nocawe Tyali, a life-skills and football teacher who works with teenagers, said the new center will give young people an alternative to high-risk behaviors and enable the area to offer more youth football programs that include an HIV/AIDS prevention message (Nullis, AP/Google.com, 5/25).

Japan Revises SSRI Warnings--Hostility, Violence

In Japan reports of violence linked to SSRI antidepressants have raised

Trust Supporters Hold Celebration Day For Mental Health Care, UK

Patients, staff and carers who support the work of the county"s leading provider of NHS services to adults with mental ill health, invited the public to join in their first "birthday" celebrations last week.

Removing Arsenic From Drinking Water: Guanajuato Will Be First To Try Rice\'s \'Nanorust\'

Rice University researchers have announced that the first field tests of "nanorust," the university"s revolutionary, low-cost technology for removing arsenic from drinking water, will begin later this year in Guanajuato, Mexico.

Swiss Initiative In Systems Biology Launches New Projects

In the second call for proposals, projects focus on either the development of new technologies or on the interface between biomedical research and genomics. The Swiss National Science Foundation (SNSF) approved six RTD-projects today. They will engage a total of 47 research groups from both Swiss Federal Institutes of Technology (ETH Zurich und EPF Lausanne), as well as from the Universities of Basel, Lausanne, Geneva and Zurich. The Friedrich-Miescher Institute of the Novartis Research Foundation is also represented as the only privately financed institution. Eight groups belong simultaneously to one of the above-mentioned universities and to the Swiss Institute for Bioinformatics.

Breakthrough Treatment For Rheumatoid Arthritis Offers New Hope To Patients

Today"s Irish launch of RoActemra, a new treatment for rheumatoid arthritis (RA) from Roche, is being hailed as a breakthrough in the fight against this incurable and often debilitating disease. RoActemra (tocilizumab) is the first medication of its kind developed for the treatment of RA and provides an innovative therapy option (1), which gives people with RA fast relief of RA signs and symptoms, such as pain. Also, people receiving RoActemra continue to benefit from increased relief during the course of treatment, with approximately half reaching remission (minimal signs and symptoms) by one year.

Why Some Prostate Cancer Returns

The majority of men who receive one of the standard treatments for localized prostate cancer - surgery or radiation therapy - have an excellent outcome.

DxS And Exiqon Diagnostics To Host A Joint Personalized Cancer Therapy Workshop During The ASCO Annual Meeting

DxS Ltd, a personalized medicine company and leader in the field of companion diagnostics is working in partnership with Exiqon Diagnostics, a company on the forefront of individualizing cancer care through its novel molecular and cell-based oncology clinical laboratory services, to present a timely and relevant workshop on personalized cancer therapy.

Thyroid Journal: First Comprehensive Guidelines For Managing Medullary Thyroid Carcinoma

New guidelines designed to standardize and optimize the diagnosis, treatment, and monitoring of patients with Medullary Thyroid Carcinoma (MTC), an uncommon and challenging form of thyroid cancer, have been developed by the American Thyroid Association and published online ahead of print in Thyroid, a peer-reviewed journal published by Mary Ann Liebert, Inc. The guidelines are available free online at http://www.liebertpub.com/thy.

Researchers Study Hair To Track Perpetrators Of International Crime

A group of researchers from the LGC Chemical Metrology Laboratory in the United Kingdom and the University of Oviedo, Spain, have come up with a method to detect how the proportions of isotopes in a chemical element (atoms with an equal number of protons and electrons but different numbers of neutrons) vary throughout the length of a single hair. The mid-term objective is to be able to use these methods to track the geographical movements of people, including international crime suspects and victims.

Development Of DNA Drugs Gives Hope To Lupus Patients

A generation of DNA-like compounds, class R inhibitory oligonucleotides (INH-ODNs), have been shown to effectively inhibit cells responsible for the chronic autoimmune condition lupus. Researchers writing in BioMed Central"s open access journal Arthritis Research & Therapy have demonstrated the anti-inflammatory effects of the INH-ODNs in both in vitro and mouse experiments.

Food Safety Measures For Fiddleheads, Health Canada

Health Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) are reminding Canadians that fresh fiddleheads should be properly cooked before being consumed.

Prescription Drug Use Dropped In 2008, Though Spending Increased, Medco Research Indicates

Use of prescription drugs in the U.S. declined in 2008 -- the first such decrease in a decade -- but total spending on such treatments increased by 3.3%, according to a report released on Wednesday by Medco Health Solutions, the AP/Washington Post reports. The report attributed the decline in sales to fewer new drugs being introduced in 2008, popular medications becoming available as non-prescriptions and concerns about certain drugs" safety. Total spending increased largely because of increased use of "specialty" medications for chronic and complicated illnesses, which often are more costly and sometimes require special considerations for storage or delivery to patients, according to the AP/Post. Profits on specialty drugs in 2008 increased by about 16%. The average costs for other brand-name drugs increased by more than 8% in 2008, the largest increase in five years. According to the report, spending on prescription drugs would have been higher but less costly generic medications accounted for 64% of all prescriptions in 2008.The report predicted that prescription drug use in the U.S. will increase by no more than 1% in 2009 and 2010. However, price increases are expected to contribute to an increase in total spending of 3% to 5% in 2009 and 4% to 6% in 2010 (Seaman, AP/Washington Post, 5/13).

Don\'t Let The Credit Crunch Squeeze Your Vision!

As the credit crunch keeps on crunching and finances are squeezed ever tighter it is tempting to put off that visit to the optometrist and to carry on with your old specs for another few months. If your vision is good then it is even less likely that you will make an appointment for a sight test - after all you can "see" that nothing is wrong!