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WHO launches the first global guidelines on sanitation and health

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Morning MEDtalks with Dr KK Aggarwal 3rd October 2018

Dear Colleague

Here are two links for videos to watch. Share them with your colleagues and friends.

  1. Vedic Health - A Dialogue with Shri Ashwini Kumar Choubey
  2. TEDx Video: Doctor-patient relationship

WHO has launched the first global guidelines on sanitation and health. The world will not reach the goal of universal sanitation coverage – where every person in the world has access to toilets that safely contain excreta – by 2030 unless countries make comprehensive policy shifts and invest more funds, said WHO. The new guidelines set out four principal recommendations:

  1. Sanitation interventions should ensure entire communities have access to toilets that safely contain excreta.
  2. The full sanitation system should be undergo local health risk assessments to protect individuals and communities from exposure to excreta – whether this be from unsafe toilets, leaking storage or inadequate treatment.
  3. Sanitation should be integrated into regular local government-led planning and service provision to avert the higher costs associated with retrofitting sanitation and to ensure sustainability.
  4. The health sector should invest more and play a coordinating role in sanitation planning to protect public health.

Addressing the concluding session of Mahatma Gandhi International Sanitation Convention, the Prime Minister, Shri Narendra Modi said that rural sanitation, which stood at 38% in 2014, has now reached 94%. More than 5 lakh villages are now ODF. India is on track to achieve the Sustainable Development Goals. He highlighted the importance of the "4 Ps" in making the world clean: Political Leadership, Public Funding, Partnerships, and People’s participation.

Post-surgical ailment not automatically medical negligence, rules Supreme Court. The Supreme Court has ruled that a doctor cannot be held guilty of medical negligence only because a patient suffers ailment after a surgery. A patient has to prove specific negligence on the part of the doctor while performing the surgery and also that the ailment was a result of improper performance of surgery, to succeed in the case. The judgment was delivered by a Bench of Justices AM Sapre and Vineet Saran in an appeal filed by a doctor against an order of the National Consumer Disputes Redressal Commission (NCDRC)... (Bar & Bench, Oct. 1, 2018).

World leaders in the UN General Assembly have reaffirmed their commitment to end the global tuberculosis epidemic by 2030, unanimously adopting a political declaration committing them to accelerate national and collective actions, investments and innovations in fighting the preventable disease.

Through the Declaration   titled “United to End Tuberculosis: An Urgent Global Response to a Global Epidemic” and adopted at a high level meeting on the issue   Heads of State and Government recognized that TB disproportionately affects developing regions and countries. They pledged to provide leadership, acknowledging that multidrug-resistant strains can reverse gains made in combating the disease, which remains among the top 10 causes of death worldwide.

India ranks fifth, jointly with Hong Kong and Thailand, in terms of the largest pictorial warning on cigarette packs with 85% of both sides of the packets covered, a Canadian Cancer Society report “Cigarette Package Health Warnings: International Status Report 2018” released on Monday said. Timor-Leste has the largest warnings on cigarette packages in the world with 92.5% on front and back, followed by Nepal and Vanuatu with 90% and New Zealand at fourth with 87.5%.

Nobel Prizes that changed medicine forever: Emil Adolf von Behring (1901), the recipient of the inaugural Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine“For his work on serum therapy, especially its application against diphtheria, by which he has opened a new road in the domain of medical science and thereby placed in the hands of the physician a victorious weapon against illness and deaths.”

Emil Adolf von Behring - alongside Paul Ehrlich, Robert Koch, Louis Pasteur and others - helped advance our understanding of the immunology of bacterial diseases. His work on the diphtheria antitoxin led to a significant drop in child mortality (Medscape).

Do your patients have symptoms of pneumonia that are not getting better with antibiotics? Fungal infections, especially lung infections like Valley fever, histoplasmosis and aspergillosis, can have similar symptoms as bacterial infections.

Valley fever is a lung infection caused by the Coccidioides soil fungus. People can get Valley fever by breathing in the microscopic fungus from the air in the areas where the fungus is present. Valley fever does not spread from person to person. The infection is asymptomatic or flu-like symptoms may be present such as fatigue, cough, shortness of breath, fever, headache, myalgia, arthralgia and/or rash.

Almost half of second-year resident physicians reported experiencing at least one symptom of burnout, which can include exhaustion and depersonalization of patients. Urology, neurology, emergency medicine and general surgery residents are at the highest risk of burnout. The years-long study, which involves 50 medical schools and 3,600 medical trainees, is the first national study to follow medical students from the beginning of medical school into residency to track predictors of burnout (JAMA).

People with fluctuating weight, blood pressure, cholesterol and/or blood sugar levels are at higher risk of heart attack and stroke than those with more stable readings. Having more measures that fluctuate adds to the risk (Circulation, Oct. 1, 2018).

India bags two UN awards for action against non-communicable diseases. India’s health ministry and the National Health Mission’s director Manoj Jhalani bagged the UN Interagency Task Force (UNIATF) Award in two separate categories for their contribution towards prevention and control of non-communicable diseases (NCDs). Union health minister JP Nadda accepted the awards on the ministry’s behalf along with Jhalani on the sidelines of the United Nations General Assembly in New York.

The ministry was awarded for developing the National Multisectoral NCD Action Plan (NMAP) involving 39 ministries to combat non-communicable diseases, which cause 62% of deaths in India. The plan focused on areas such as tobacco control, control on excessive consumption of fats, salt, and sugar along with controlling air pollution… (HT)



Dr KK Aggarwal

Padma Shri Awardee

President Elect CMAAO

President Heart Care Foundation of India

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