Black coat vs white coat: medical profession vs law industry


Every medical  case that goes to court involves lawyers and their expensive fees. Most of the time even though the doctors may be right, he has to defend himself with the help of  lawyers.  Law industry has been  benefited enormously because of consumer protection act at the cost of doctors. Increasing mistrust and unhappiness in patient’s mind definitely does not  help patients and doctors, but ends up benefiting law industry.

Strangely  doctor’s fee are quite low but lawyers charges them astronomical amounts, which are beyond any logic.

      In a country where people  fight with their parents, brothers and  sisters for money and property, it will be naive to think that idea of making money from doctor  does not exist. With court compensations going into crores, doctors  can sense many times that some patient relatives  try to use the opportunity. They have nothing at stake so they try to make some noise on social media and harass the doctor in court or on social platforms. Even for patients, who had poor prognosis at the very onset of treatment, relatives can create problems, many times due to financial reasons. Doctors have no protection from these nuisance. All these factors further enhance insecurity in doctor’s mind.

It is  because of career building of few professions, that medico-legal cases are being fueled. Medical errors and complications are integral part of the treatment . Even simplest of diseases carry some amount of risk.  These  will still remain, even if doctors are hanged to death. Natural complications, poor prognosis can be attributed to errors by clever lawyering and because of benefit derived by other professions.

Many careers  are  shining in name of preventable deaths  and medical errors at the cost of medical profession.  The managers, right activists, media   and lawyers  have made their career and wealth out of it. Ask any doctor really, are these issues really preventable beyond  a point.  The  line separating errors or natural complications is really blurred and arbitrary. People who work in life and death situation know it well that  even natural poor prognosis can be labelled and proved as error by retrospective analysis and wisdom of hindsight and more certainly with luxury of time at disposal for lawyers and courts.

It becomes a unbalanced match specially when the amount of money which was paid to doctor to save a life was peanuts as compared to now being paid to punish him.

 Zero fee advertisements and fixed commission ads on television by lawyers in health systems in certain developed countries is an example of instigation against medical profession. They lure patients to file law suits and promise them hefty reimbursements. There is no dearth of such   relatives, lawyers who are ready to try their luck, sometimes in vengeance and sometimes for lure of money received in compensations.  This encouragement and instigation of lawsuit against doctors has become a major disadvantage for medical profession.

Sense of impending  injustice  is fueling among doctors, giving   a  feeling  of   sitting ducks  for harassment.

what if money is taken out of medico-legal cases

South Asians at higher health risks: Low lean mass


The research further establishes that this low lean mass has been a constant in South Asians for almost 11,000 years.

South Asians, even those who move to other countries, are at a higher risk of diabetes than people of most other ethnicity, and according to a study published last week in Nature Scientific Reports, the reason for this is their relatively low lean mass

The research further establishes that this low lean mass has been a constant in South Asians for almost 11,000 years.

Higher lean mass is associated with superior performance in some, but not all, sports.

Mesolithic hunter-gatherer ancestors of South Asians were much taller, but low lean mass has characterised South Asians for at least 11,000 years, putting them at higher risk of type-2 diabetes and other non-communicable diseases (NCDs) such as heart disease, according to the study which analysed 197 archaeological and recent South Asian adult skeletons.

Height decreased by 8.5cm in men and 7.7cm in women when South Asians transitioned from hunting and gathering to farming around 9,000 years ago, but their lean mass (organ and muscle mass) has remained unchanged over the past 11,000 years, the study said.

Since changes in lean mass are unlikely over the next four to five generations, making lifestyle interventions are crucial to containing NCDs, which account for 60% of all deaths in India.

The study suggests that while height is determined by nutritional factors, physique (bone breadth and lean mass) reflects ecological pressures. “The decrease in height probably took place very quickly (over hundreds of years rather than thousands). After the initial drop in height with the adoption of farming, it then continued to decrease very slowly between about 5,000 years ago and today,” lead author Dr Emma Pomeroy, lecturer in the Evolution of Health, Diet and Disease, Department of Archaeology, University of Cambridge, said in an email interview. “The ancient origins of low lean mass in South Asians would be most consistent with long-term adaptations to ecological pressures, rather than more recent dietary change or the impact of 19th-20th century famines exacerbated by British colonial policy,” said the study. Ecological pressures include adaptation to a predominantly hot, equatorial climate, which may have led to selection for lower body mass (which generates less heat and increases heat loss through a greater surface area to volume ratio) to reduce thermal load. “Low lean mass is present at birth in South Asian babies compared with European babies; even after South Asian families migrate to other parts of the world, such as the UK, after several generations in this new environment, their children still have low lean mass compared with children of European ancestry. This strongly suggests a major heritable component to South Asian low lean mass, but the contributions of genetic, epigenetic and environmental conditions are still unclear,” said Dr Pomeroy, referring to a study on type-2 diabetes in migrant South Asians published in The Lancet in 2015. People of South Asian ancestry are at a higher risk of diabetes even after risks like unhealthy diet, sedentary lifestyles and obesity are factored in. For example, South Asians in London have a two to three times greater type 2 diabetes compared with those of European ancestry, with onset typically five years earlier and at a lower body mass index (by 5 kg/m2). “The implications of the study are that low lean mass is a very ancient characteristic, so it is unlikely to change much in the coming generations. This means that other interventions, especially the promotion of healthy lifestyles, are particularly critical to manage the growing health and economic burden of chronic diseases,” said Dr Pomeroy.

Building muscle mass and high fitness levels have the potential for averting diabetes, and even heart disease.

 

 

Silence of  REEL Heroes: #Aamir-Khan, when REAL Heroes  #doctor/nurses are thrashed #NRS-Hospital


                    When  examples of stray incidents were portrayed as general phenomenon on television and a great mistrust was created, the existing gap further  widened between  doctor – patient, the REEL hero #Aamir-khan got a great applause. Society believed  and trusted  the stars, who entertained , enacted stories and danced to make them happy, keeping them entertained. Masses believed easily, what  Reel hero, while entertaining  told them and not trusted the doctor, who was awake at nights to save their  lives. REEL heroes earned name,  fame and money  by unilateral poor projection of doctors in filmy stories, right or wrong or just stray incidents. Larger good work and hard work of doctors was of no consideration. Sad  era for medical profession, where reel heroes, who merely act are trusted more than real doers. Now when doctors are being nearly killed, just because  for being on the bedside of patients, the silence of REEL Heroes,  proves the  hollow applause, they have generated for themselves.

 NRS hospital 

Reblogged: #Soldier/Nurse/doctor vs Filmy superstar: Reel Heroes or Real Heroes. what does the   society Need/desire/deserve?

The old adage  “All that glitters is not Gold” is particularly relevant  in current era of media domination where media  projection shapes the perception and may defy  the  reality.  Media has dominated our lives and can sway the  opinion formation of masses.  Written media, television, social media  can collectively influence the mass opinion.

Society, in general, needs to be wise  enough  to realize the importance   of  getting  rid of  these blinders in  real life . One such factor that causes an illusional mist in the  thoughts of masses is projection in films. They create a mirage of illusional glitter wherein  there is blurring of real life from the reel life of heroes. The larger-than-life unreal persona of the celebrities on screen looks too charming and sometimes becomes undeniable and dominates mind of masses. The super-human characters played out in films appear to be real. The problem arises when the imaginary characters of the reel life stories are emulated in real life. Individuals as projected character fill in  peoples’ imagination and are perceived as real and   becomes ingrained in mind. The naivety of masses to perceive the projected character as real one  goes beyond a reasonable thought process and imagination. 

These roles played in films are  not  really act of   inspiration  in real life  as  the actual purpose accomplished in the end of a movie  is entertainment of society and business for themselves. A recent  candid  admission  by the actor # Mr-Irrfan-Khan  that film stars should  not be role models  was impressive (Hindustan times) .

   At the best, a particular projected character  (and  not individual acting star) may be a  role model. An actor or super star, is simply doing his work of “acting” in  the end. This work of acting may bring an entertainment of few hours at the most.

One  cannot stray away from the wisdom to  choose between what we consume merely for our entertainment and  what we believe or face in real life. One needs to differentiate between rationale truth behind the celebrity gimmicks in the media and exaggerated sensationalism. Sensation created merely for a commercial successful venture should not be allowed to overpower the judgments of real life.

But the problem starts, when these false perceptions created merely   by a projected  glimmer    takes the shimmer  away from the real worthy. The real  professionals and people who are worthy of glory become invisible behind  the glittery mist, a haze, which is unreal and unhelpful in real life.

   A  soldier contributes to our society much more in real terms. Even a junior doctor saves many lives in a  day in emergencies as compared to work of a superstar in films.  A teacher, nurse or scientist have contribution which is more fruitful to our generation. Also the scientists, who contribute immensely and bring about the  real change in our lives. Their contribution is huge to our society and much more than doing just acting on screen. The reel actor merely imitates the real life lived and actual work done by real heroes like soldier, doctor or teacher. Someone who only acts and  behaves like one, is respected and paid thousand times or more than the real one. In reality, people need  more than mere entertainment and reel role models and actors in their real lives.

 

Compare the trivial  amount of  remuneration, fame  and respect the real worker  gets  as compared to the film stars, who merely imitate their actions. Reel projection for purpose  of entertainment is more easier to enact and more profitable  than actual performance  in real life.  It is easier to become a reel hero, as it requires little hard work or just connections to get an opportunity.  Some one can be a reel hero just  by  dynastic factor  easily. Hard work is definitely required but that may or may not be prerequisite.

 

Even good films  may raise some social problem, which everyone knows already and offer no practical solution in reality. Therefore what good it brings to the public, beyond entertainment, is any body’s guess. The persona, actors usually  project on screen, may actually be far from his or her real personality. In most of cases, what he does in movies and reel life, is actually away from  possibility of real life . But strangely in present era, people lose sight of what is mere perception. It is clearly a story, tale, a drama, a myth and is not the real identity of the people, we see on-screen.

 

 

In present era, real contributions by people, who are saviours of human life and  the real heroes, remain unappreciated. People are so besotted by  fame and money that they fail to appreciate the sacrifices made by real heroes. Filmy super hero  just imitates  a doctor, soldier,  dacoit or a street hooligan and just pretends to be one on the screen.

But there are  real life heroes that exist around us. Doctors awake at night saving lives every minute or soldier in freezing cold are worthy  of more respect and are real heroes.  And it is up to the society  to look beyond the superficial and reel story, and focus on the real life actors. There has to be an true effort to make, respect and appreciate  real heroes.

Point to  ponder  is that whether society needs people  just  acting  ke   doctors,  soldiers  and not the  actual and real ones, who saves lives. Does Society need  only  entertainment, because respect  which is paid to someone who is  just  an   actor, is  not extended to real doctors, soldiers or other altruistic professions.

 A reel hero who acts like a soldier, is famous  and richer and than the  actual soldier, who dies unnamed and in penury.   Children of today’s times will strive  to become, who is worshiped and paid respect  by society and  therefore will prefer  to become reel heroes.

 

A  society truly needs the real people, who work and act for them, more than just entertainment. It will need total change in attitude of people to deconstruct the perceptions, which are based on mere projections and are away from reality.

It is time to recreate and worship real heroes, who have become invisible behind the glittery mist.

Society needs to envisage the bigger real picture, and should not be mistaken for another projected story.                          

The perception of the projection will decide, what does the   society actually  need- or desire-or deserve , “Reel Heroes or Real Heroes”.

Blatant cruelty & #oppression-of-doctors: Re-entering Hammurabi Era (1750BC)


Every doctor knows that some thing is really wrong happening against the profession.  Not only every day minor irritants but there  are recurring episodes of blatant cruelty against doctors. The whole profession is being criticized openly in the garb of stray incidences or in cases of genuine poor prognosis. Each and every doctors  wants  to react.  But no one knows  really “ how to do it”. There is scant  unity  amid this chaotic problem. The community has been broken  and pushed to behave as single suffering   individuals. whatever way  they choose to react ,  the slightest reaction may  invite the ire of many unknown people, may be mighty and revengeful.  

          By showing cruelty and being revengeful towards doctors , our society is in a way re-entering the realm of an ancient medical regulatory  system, Hammurabi Era (1750BC). Certain aggrieved health care consumers may welcome a move toward harsh penalties in the name of justice and simply for revenge but we need to keep in mind the  poor outcomes in complex diseases, limitation of science and of course the idiosyncrasies of the human body.  Fear factors and  Impact  of present legal complexities,  on doctors  is  already on a par with that of  Hammurabi  era.

Then why  doctors  be  made a punching bag for venting out emotions of the bereaved relatives. Nothing and really nothing can justify this barbaric act. Emotions should not be allowed to take such a demonic form.

This is simply jungle raj, goonism and  expression of a most  uncivilized kind of society, which simply cannot be excused by any sort of reasoning. The incident is being  protested by the professional bodies as is the routine and after few day things normalized for everybody else except that terrorized doctor .  

If the courts, the commission for women’s rights, and the human rights commission are maintaining silence, is it because the rights of doctors were never clearly defined and outlined.  The duties of a doctor have always been enumerated but the rights have never been discussed.

           Human rights of doctor and medical community have been grossly violated by physical assaults. It is painful to see that the authorities that are supposed to take action have maintained a silence all these years about this issue.

What is role of human rights commission, if rights of a hard working community like doctors are violated and what is it supposed to do? I really fail to understand what else will it take to shake them out of their stupor ?

NRS Hospital Violence

Hammurabi era

female doctor assault

#Choosing-to-be-doctor in lawless society: A self inflicted disaster #uncivilized-society #Govt-apathy


There is increasing discontentment among doctors because of  present complex and punishing system. They are bound by so many factors that they finally end up at the receiving end all the time. They are under Hippocratic oath and therefore expected to work with very high morality, goodwill and kindness for the sufferings of mankind and dying patients.  They are also supposed to maintain meticulous documentation and also supposed to work under norms of  medical industry. They are supposed to see large number of patients with fewer staff and nursing support while still giving excellent care in these circumstances. And if these were not enough, the fear of courts and medico-legal cases, verbal threats, abuses, and physical assaults and show of distrust by patient and relatives further makes working difficult. Additionally there may be bullying by certain administrative systems at places, who use pressure tactics to get their own way.

Enslavement of doctors

NRS Hospital doctor assault

Young doctors  complete  training and find themselves working in a hostile environment, at the receiving end of public wrath, law, media for reasons they can’t fathom. They  face continuous negative publicity, poor infrastructure and preoccupied negative beliefs of society.

       They face physical assault , routine instances of verbal abuse and threat for no fault of theirs. Many become punching bags for the inept medical system and invisible medical industry. The threat of physical assault is quite real as well.  Even female doctors have not been spared by mobs. Silence of prominent social people, celebrities, human right commission  and society icons on this issue is a pointer towards increasingly uncivilized mind set of society. 

Being revengeful against doctor is very easy. They have become sitting ducks for revenge. Verbal abuse, physical harm, legal remedies, disciplinary actions, punishments, social mudslinging, court cases and legal harassment are common remedies easily available. In absence of support, lack of law and order enforcement, physical assaults and even murder is also not a distant possibility. Here it was just a treatment failure or may be a poor response to treatment, which resulted in killing of doctor’s family. If trying to treat some one can result in harm to one self, why should the doctors will choose to treat. More over why should one become a doctor at all. Such incidents of extreme violence are not merely disaster for a family, but  are warning signs to whole of profession.

     Many in such unfortunate situations must have a thought in mind “ why should one become a doctor  and serve an uncivilized society?”

 

Deadly doctor assault at #NRS-Hospital-Kolkata: doctors- save yourself


The condition of the intern, who was admitted to a hospital, was stated to be critical . After Death of Patient, Relatives Clash With Junior Doctors in  #NRS-Hospital-Kolkata-west-bengal Hospital Over ‘Negligence’

An intern was injured in the clash and regular services at Nil Ratan Sircar Medical College and Hospital were disrupted as clashes broke out over the death of a 75-year-old patient.

        Unwillingness or failure of government to prevent such attacks on doctors will have deep ramifications on future of medical profession. Silence of authorities, human right commission is really appalling.  Role of doctor associations, parent institutes have been spineless and not encouraging.  Media, celebrities, film stars in spreading the hatred against the medical profession and creating an environment of mistrust is unpardonable, where stray incidents were portrayed as normal routine just to earn money and fame. Ultimately doctors have been left to fend for themselves individually or with friend groups. 

Kolkata: A clash erupted between junior doctors and relatives of a patient at a state-run hospital here late Monday night after the 75-year-old died due to alleged negligence, police said Tuesday. An intern was injured in the clash and regular services at Nil Ratan Sircar Medical College and Hospital were disrupted as the junior doctors began a sit-in, demanding better security, they said.  Family members of Mohammed Shahid, a resident of Tangra, allegedly assaulted some junior doctors at around 11 pm last night after he died. As a result, a clash broke out, virtually turning the hospital premises into a battleground, the police said. Shahid’s family members were also angry over a delay in handing over his body, they added.

A large team of police personnel from Entally police station intervened and restored to lathicharge to bring the situation under control, a senior Kolkata Police officer said. More than 50 doctors shut the gates of the medical institution and began a sit-in on Monday night, demanding “protection”, the police said. The condition of the intern, who was admitted to a hospital, was stated to be critical, they said. Services at the hospital, including the emergency services, were affected on Tuesday as the junior doctors’ continued their protest.
West Bengal Medical Education Department director, Dr Pradip Kumar Mitra, visited the hospital and tried to persuade the doctors to withdraw their protest, but in vain.


    Empathy, sympathy, compassion and trust  of the doctor towards the patient, will definitely get a hit after these incidents. Everyday  the news of assaults on doctors, court cases against doctors, negative projection of the medical profession   in the media are viewed  by doctor’s community anxiously. Recent senseless attack  on doctor  at NRS Hospital Kolkata again a warning to children, who wish to be doctors.

      Merely taking some token  action and showing  protest will not solve the problem. It does not compensate for the  damage done to medical profession. Sympathy, compassion and trust of the doctors towards patients will definitely reduce. Who will be  the ultimate sufferer, does not need a Einstein brain to predict.

                    This insecurity or fear of the uncertainty tends to affect the thinking process of doctors and the way they practice medicine or deal with the patients. Many will like to be defensive in practice, or try not to treat very sick patients.  Why would someone try complex surgeries with risk involved? Few will limit themselves to follow protocols. Going extra mile with risk, which not everyone will like to take. Many will become health managers or  do something else than do active clinical work. Who should risk his life while doing routine work?

     Patients might get their revenge for the  naturally occurring disease, but they will lose compassion and trust of doctors in the long run. If that is the way to impart justice in this era, doctors will have to find some way to save themselves.

 

#Expensive-modern-health-care: Reminiscent of an ancient realm of medical regulation #Medical-lawsuits


With the evolution of medical science and medical care intertwined with  medical business, braided changes in  medical  regulation is not an far off expectation. But reticulation of evolution to modern medicine  and health care has not happened  in  isolation. Simultaneously there has been  progressively complex emerging trends in medical business and changing patterns of health investments along with an era of corporate investments in health care  has also ushered.  Every one now wishes  to live longer  and  dreams of better quality of life with support of progressive medical care.  Opportunities projected by advancements in health care, have shown that these dreams can be a real possibility, in many cases. That kind of perception has given patients a hope in lieu of some money. With rich people willing to spend more, the insurance sector and corporate invested money into health care, which was unthinkable few decades back in the  past.  This reticulation of business and  health care really took away the profession from control  of doctors. As it is no more simply treating a disease and involves many more issues.  New model of business in  health care is  still  not a mature process. It has emerged and progressed in  just  for few decades, as compared to  medical treatments and systems that existed since ancient times. It is still in infancy and still has to go a  long way to do real justice to every one.   No one really knows how to regulate this difficult area,  which encompasses life and death, deals with extremes of poverty and riches, mortality and morbidity, pain and  relief , sadness and happiness, smiles and sorrows and uncountable emotions, intertwines with financial aspects. Most difficult part is  amalgamation of  intricacies of science with minds of  patient and doctor’s skill in  newly evolved milieu of financial complexities.  Results are not encouraging for the profession.

 An effort to govern or  regulate the medical profession  is not new. Hammurabi  had initiated to  write the rules of the game. This single professional species was managed with cruel regulation 5000 years ago, that initiated a change in the global perception and regulatory system in radical and unprecedented ways.

Hammurabi,  5000 years ago,  was  not even at the   doorstep of medical science, but he  promulgated some rules. It is difficult to say whether he was naïve or  brilliant  enough to make it more mathematical. He fixed  heavy prize for saving lives and used to  cut the hands of physicians for death or untoward incident. But he was still wise enough to pay heavily if life was saved.   After thousands of years, with some scientific advancements, our regulation has remained more or less similar in basics. It is still based on principles of revenge and punishments. Now clearly  knowing well the limitation of medical science and the uncertainties and complexities of human body in better way, it still  remains  somewhat  unfair to doctors.  In other words, it has not attained enough  evolution and maturity.

  Hammurabi at the start of civilization believed that doctors needed to be punished in case there was poor prognosis. He failed to understand the complexity of human body and the limitations of medical  science, most of which was unknown at that time. By an application of average wisdom, doctor can be easily blamed for poor outcome, because he is always a common link between treatment and poor prognosis. Stricter punishments were imposed to  regulate medical profession, even  when the medical science was not even developed enough to deal with most of diseases.  Children are always taught in school that medical profession is a noble one. But they are never told, about the cruelty this profession has faced since ancient times.  Almost universally, the earlier work or contribution of  a doctor  to society is  not taken into account.  Even for complexities of medical science and uncertainties of the outcome, blame can  conveniently be  passed on doctors by application of average wisdom.

    Hammurabi’s Codex specified the harshest form of deselection of health providers possible. If the physician erred through omission or commission, his fingers or hands were cut off, immediately stopping his practice. Therefore, a single mistake can undo all the good work of past or the future good work that could have been accomplished. Problem here is that who can differentiate with certainty the real cause of sufferings of patient, a poor prognosis or a mistake.  Such  regulatory systems will dissuade  other good people joining the profession, again  resulting in  further inhibition and flourishing of profession for the good.  Obviously,  harsher  penalties will discourage a physician surplus.

Today the global  system of medical regulation, is becoming somewhat  similar, to those ancient regulations in  terms of punishment and revenge. Differential payment system for health care also resembles the Code of Hammurabi in some respects. And this is despite the fact that now we are very well conversant with the known uncertainty and complexity of the human body and despite cognizance of the poor prognosis in many disease states.

In an effort to institute  a  well controlled  healthcare, our society is in a way re-entering the realm of an ancient medical regulatory  system. Certain aggrieved health care consumers may welcome a move toward harsh penalties in the name of justice and simply for revenge but we need to keep in mind the  poor outcomes in complex diseases, limitation of science and of course the idiosyncrasies of the human body. Evolution of medical legal system and medical regulation has to evolve and mature, to enjoy  benefits of medical advancement to the fullest. Fear factors and  Impact  of present legal complexities,  on doctors  is  already on a par with that of  Hammurabi  era.

Re-blogged

Millions of preventable disease deaths: whose moral burden is it?


Diseases can be  preventable or unpreventable, have  good  or  bad prognosis. But once patient  enters hospital,  what ever may be the reason or genesis of ailment, it becomes a moral responsibility of doctors.  Health care professionals  can be trash-talked   or ridiculed by media and anyone, even for worst prognostic cases.   But  large numbers of deaths   happen  due to preventable causes like accidents , drains, live electric wires, water contamination, dengue, malaria, recurring floods  etc. In fact the burden of   negligence here is massive and  these deaths are unpardonable.   Who ultimately carries the moral burden of millions of  preventable deaths?

Common causes of  such  disease, sufferings  and death , specially in developing and poor countries:

  1. Dietary risks and diseases spread by  water sanitation and hygiene.   These  have  direct  linked with bad sanitation and poor hygiene practices. Poor sanitation is the leading cause of diarrhea, malnutrition, cholera, jaundice ( hepatitis A and E) , worm infestations, typhoid and other enteric fevers, which lead to chronic malnutrition and lowered immunity that further feed the infectious disease cycle.  Apart from infectious disease like diarrhea, but also pneumonia and tuberculosis, which are leading killers across all age groups.
  2. Undernourishment in   children  will cause them to be  underweight, stunted and wasted, and makes them  more vulnerable to infections. They are at higher risk of dying of childhood infections.

Working sewage-disposal systems, waste disposal management, protection of water supply from contamination and hand-washing practices are essential components to reduce preventable deaths.

  1. Poor sanitation, unsafe water and low public health also increase drug-resistant infections in low-income and middle-income countries. Lowering of antibiotic consumption  can not be achieved  because superbugs ,  and antibiotic resistance  are already in the environment and continue to spread through contaminated food, water and hospital equipment.

Antibiotics overuse is rampant as they are  used to treat diarrhea and upper respiratory tract infections. Improving sanitation, providing clean water, adopting personal hygiene and getting vaccinated can reduce infections.

  1. Air pollution : air pollution is a public health crisis.  Masses are forced to breathe in air which  contains pollutants  in  unsafe limits, some are carcinogenic. It  is a cause of  millions of deaths  It is besides many fold of this number live their life with morbidity. Polluting vehicles, industry, lesser trees and plantations, poor practices and not enough governance and policies have resulted in poisonous air to breathe. Diseases like COPD, asthma and lung cancer are few common ailments.
  2. A::Dog bite (rabies ), Animal poop and Human – animal interface:   Not properly disposed  animal poop is a  cause of generation of infections and diseases, requiring heavy use of antibiotics and consequently leads to emergence of further antibiotic resistance bacteria. This cycle of production of infections and use of antibiotics perpetuates a vicious cycle.  Stray animals still defecate at every place.  Poop of Stray dogs, cattle and pigs stays in environment and causes life threatening infections. Hundreds of diseases are described due to poor control of human animal interface.

But stray animals and dogs are everywhere. Owner of pet dogs make them defecate outside their own houses and on the roads and wherever their dogs chooses. This poop dried and mixed with dust, acts a source of infection to the community.

         B::   Life threatening infections : dog’s and animal faeces is a big health hazard. It is even worse than a dog bite since it spreads infection in entire community. Animal faeces contain pathogens, which are known to cause severe diseases, infections and organ failure. Many diseases may be spread by millions of these dogs and other animals like pigs, cattle as their faeces contain parasites, bacteria and viruses. These include life threatening bacterial infections by E. coli, MRSA, Leptospira, Salmonellosis, Campylobacteriosis, brucellosis, Rickettsia and parasitic infections like  Giardiasis, Whipworm, Hookworm, Roundworms, Tapeworms,    Cryptosporidiosis, Echinococcosis, Leishmaniasis etc. Viral infections like rabies, influenza and other viruses may also spread through these animals.

               C:: Environmental health Hazard: Storm water runoff due to extensive rainfall can wash off all these droppings into drains, many of which are connected to river systems and water sources.  This can lead to a widespread source of waterborne illnesses. Dry  poop on the roads is mixed with dust particles and in the air. So everyone is living in a highly infectious environment.

6.     Mosquito borne diseases: millions die because of vector borne disease , as mosquito control  has been inadequate.  Malaria, dengue,  chickengunya  and many other lethal  diseases spread  due to mosquitoes.

 

7.      Preventable natural disasters exacerbated by human activity: floods, famine, disease outbreaks.

8.      Road, rail  accidents and other accidents: are mostly  preventable errors.

         The role of health care professionals in present day circumstances remains misunderstood and underappreciated, as they assume the responsibility for continuous care of the sick or injured. People who have never treated a patient  in their life time influence health policies, which effects  millions. Excessive preventable deaths are  just a symptoms of a larger problem.  Who  is the one who feels moral burden of millions of preventable deaths?

     .

 

Bedaquiline: New anti TB drug: Govt may allow usage by private health sector


 

Bedaquiline is  a TB drug which is also known by the trade name  Sirturo. Bedaquiline works by blocking an enzyme inside the Mycobacterium tuberculosis bacteria called ATP synthase. This enzyme is used by the bacteria to generate energy. Without the ability to generate energy, the TB bacteria  are killed.

Bedaquiline is used in combination with other TB drugs to treat pulmonary TB in adults when they have multi drug resistant TB (MDR-TB

It should only be used when effective  Tb treatment cannot otherwise be provided.

It should be always be used in combination with at least 3 other TB drugs which drug susceptibility testing has shown that the patient is susceptible to. If drug susceptibility testing is not available then bedaquiline should be used with at least 4 other drugs to which the patient is likely to be susceptible.

The safety and efficacy of the drug in the treatment of HIV positive patients with MDR-TB has also not yet been established.

side effects of bedaquiline                          

The most common side effects are headache, dizziness, feeling sick, being sick, joint pain and increases in liver enzymes. Side effects can be experienced by more than one in ten people.

Another  side effect is that QTc prolongation.

The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) on 28th December 2012 granted approval for bedaquiline to be used to treat drug resistant TB.  FDA News Release, 31st December 2012 . In October 2013 the CDC issued new federal guidelines on the use of the drug, for the treatment of multi drug resistant TB.

Government may allow private sector to use key drug used for treating tuberculosis

Around 2.1 million people have TB in India, of which an estimated 30,000 people have MDR-TB. Only 6,500 patients are on the bedaquiline-based treatment regimen, which may cause severe side effects such as heart problems and hearing impairment.

The Union health ministry (India) is considering a proposal to allow bedaquiline, a controlled-access drug used in the treatment of multi-drug resistant tuberculosis (MDR-TB), to be open for prescription in the private sector.

Being a controlled-access drug, bedaquiline is dispensed only by the government to people with MDR-TB. At least four courses of treatment are needed. The drug costs Rs 28,000 per course, which means the cost per patient is Rs 1.12 lakh on medicine alone.

Around 2.1 million people have TB in India, of which an estimated 30,000 people have MDR-TB. Only 6,500 patients are on the bedaquiline-based treatment regimen, which may cause severe side effects such as heart problems and hearing impairment. “Technical opinion is being sought as there is no consensus among experts on opening access to the private sector,” said a senior health ministry official familiar with developments.

The health ministry, in collaboration with the departments of health research, biotechnology etc, is working out an institutional mechanism to give bedaquiline to patients in the private sector. “There is a huge pharma lobby that is building an argument for putting everyone on bedaquiline, but it doesn’t work like that. Even though it is being hailed as a wonder drug, it has side effects that include hearing loss. It’s a new drug, so we don’t really have adequate data on its long-term treatment outcome,” the official quoted above said.

“People generally assume bedaquiline is safer than other drugs but they forget that compared to a 6-8 months course for other medicines, a bedaquiline-based regimen could go up to 18-24 months. The longer duration could have its effects that our experts are looking at,” he added.

The ministry has begun compiling data on treatment outcome for all oral treatment regimens among Indians, which also includes the bedaquiline-related course. “About 20 patients in the private sector in Mumbai have been given conditional bedaquiline access by the government. But the entire private sector can be given access only if they strictly adhere to the drug-compliance regimen for complete cure and to stop the patient developing extremely drug-resistant TB,” the official said.

There will be strict vigilance. “Since it is a long-term regimen, it’s verifiable. A call will be taken soon,” said a second ministry official, requesting anonymity.

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has provided 22,000 doses to the government. “We don’t want to deny patients newer drugs if it benefits them, so we are considering the idea,” said the first health ministry official.

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) has provided 22,000 doses to the government. “We don’t want to deny patients newer drugs if it benefits them, so we are considering the idea,” said the first health ministry official

 

 

 

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