Healthcare as a Commons? - NewsGrabs 9 November 2008
Healthcare as a Commons
“Drs. Christine K. Cassel of the American Board of Internal Medicine and Troyen E. Brennan, a medical doctor and lawyer with Aetna, suggest that the commons may offer some distinct advantages over the fee-for-service model that now prevails in U.S. medicine.
The problem with the current system is that individual physicians cannot assert their moral agency for health care choices by participating in a commons. Any money that doctors might save through “bedside rationing” would be siphoned away by insurance companies and hospitals, and would not necessarily be used to improve patient care. Individual doctors therefore have little incentive to keep a lid on costs or make ethical judgments because those choices have been taken away from them. They have no “community responsibility” for aggregate costs or outcomes.
European Commission recognises need for amending herbals directive
The European Commission officials made clear to the delegation that they had become aware that the Directive fell short of its intended purpose of providing an effective simplified registration system for traditional herbal medicines, particularly those originating from non-western cultures such as India and China. The meeting focused on ways in which amendments to the existing legislation could be made in due course.
“We are under no illusion as to just how much work needs to be done to get full support of the Parliament and Council to make the necessary amendments to this directive. Substantial agreement on scientific approaches that ensure intended quality of natural medicines without imposing unnecessary burden will be essential. The process will be helped greatly if there is an acceptance by the European institutions that evaluation systems will need to be based on those already in use by premium suppliers in countries like India and China. These systems are better adapted to the unique characteristics of natural medicines. It is simply not possible to use the methods presently used in Europe for conventional pharmaceutical OTC drugs.”
B-Vitamin 'may be Alzheimer's aid'
US researchers found vitamin B3 lowered levels of a protein linked to Alzheimer's damage in mice. They found that levels of one, called phosphorylated tau, were significantly lower in the animals.
This protein is involved in abnormal 'deposits' in brain cells, called 'tangles', which contribute to the brain damage which progressively affects people with Alzheimer's.
Dietary sport supplement shows strong effects in the elderly
Beta-alanine (BA), a dietary supplement widely used by athletes and body builders, has been proven to increase the fitness levels of a group of elderly men and women. The research, published in BioMed Central's open access Journal of the International Society of Sports Nutrition, suggests that BA supplementation improves muscle endurance in the elderly.
Probiotics 'may stop pneumonia'
The friendly bacteria can block the colonisation by dangerous bugs of the airways of ventilated patients, the Swedish study concluded. The probiotic solution performed just as well as normal antiseptics used to keep pneumonia-causing bacteria at bay.
Reasons to eat fiber
It's not in meat. Or milk. Or fish. It is only found in things that grow in the ground, such as vegetables, grains, fruit and nuts. No, we are not talking about the '08 election. We're talking about "dietary fiber," various components in our food that benefit our health.
The Science of Cherries: The FDA Calls Cherries a Drug
A 1999 peer-reviewed report in the Journal of Natural Products published by the American Tart CherriesChemical Society, the world’s largest scientific society, concluded that tart cherries may relieve pain better than aspirin and other anti-inflammatory drugs. The consumption of about twenty cherries reduces inflammation in a manner similar to that of aspirin or the cox-2 inhibiting drugs, without the side effects of gastric bleeding or vitamin depletion that are associated with these drugs.
When cherry growers began to cite the scientific research, the FDA sent a warning letter to twenty-nine companies that market cherries, threatening regulatory action if they did not remove the scientific information regarding the anti-inflammatory properties of cherries from their websites.
Iraq returns to its alternative (herbal) medicine roots
"The demand for herbal remedies has skyrocketed because of fake pharmacies and counterfeit medicines that don't work," says Faris Kadhem, director of the Health Ministry's herbal medicine center.
The government has raided and closed 120 illegal pharmacies across Iraq in the past two months, Khawasiya says. Many more continue to operate, she says. The pharmaceutical drug-smuggling networks are controlled by criminal gangs hoping to take advantage of an industry worth nearly half a billion dollars each year, she says.
Why You Can’t Trust Most Studies on Health
A study of 49 papers in leading journals that had been cited by more than 1,000 other scientists -- in other words, well-regarded research -- showed that within only a few years, almost a third of the papers had been refuted by other studies. And the “hotter” the field, the greater the competition and the more likely it is that published research in top journals could be wrong.
There also seems to be a bias towards publishing positive results. A study earlier this year found that among the studies submitted to the FDA about the effectiveness of antidepressants, almost all of those with positive results were published, whereas very few of those with negative results were.
Rigged Trials: Drug Studies Favor The Manufacturer
Marcia Angell, MD, former editor-in-chief of the New England Journal of Medicine, agrees. "Is there some way (drug) companies can rig clinical trials to make their drugs look better than they are? Unfortunately, the answer is yes. Trials can be rigged in a dozen ways, and it happens all the time." One "way to load the dice," she writes, "is to enroll only young subjects in trials, even if the drugs being tested are meant to be used mainly in older people. Because young people generally experience fewer side effects, drugs will look safer." Another of the "common ways to bias trials is to present only part of the data - the part that makes the product look good - and ignore the rest."
The Safety Gap: FDA "a fundamentally broken agency"
"Even the F.D.A.’s staunchest defenders now acknowledge that something is terribly wrong. Among them is Peter Barton Hutt, who served as the agency’s general counsel during the Nixon administration and is widely considered the dean of the F.D.A. bar in Washington. I’ve interviewed Hutt dozens of times over the years, and he has always defended the F.D.A. No more. “This is a fundamentally broken agency,” Hutt told me earlier this year, “and it needs to be repaired.”
Banned: Slimming drug linked to suicide is taken off the shelves
Safety chiefs have suspended the use of a weight loss drug over concerns that it may be linked to suicide and sudden death.
Officials said the risk of side effects from the drug, Acomplia, outweighed its benefits.
Sanofi & Pfizer End Research Into Their Diet Pills
Sanofi-Aventis is halting all human trials of its ill-fated Acomplia fat pill after authorities in several countries requested local tests be stopped. And Pfizer just disclosed that development of a similar drug is ending.
The ending of those trials “compromised the feasibility” of the global clinical program, a Sanofi spokesman tells Bloomberg News. “It’s over.” Last year, the FDA failed to approve Acomplia over psychiatric side effects. Merck killed taranabant, which is the same type of drug, over links to psychiatric side effects.Not too long ago it appeared that the 'obesity epidemic' was going to be a golden opportunity for increased pharmaceutical sales. Something went wrong. The drugs designed to interfere with nutrient absorption are causing serious side effects.
Overeating seems to be a result of our bodies craving nutrients. So why not just provide proper organic food, instead of medicines that interfere with body chemistry and absorption of nutrients?
Antipsychotics Harm Children - European College of Neuropsychopharmacology
The ECN acknowledges what is known about the adverse effects of these drugs:
"Children and adolescents seem to have a higher risk than adults for experiencing adverse events such as extrapyramidal symptoms, prolactin elevation, sedation, weight gain, and metabolic effects when taking antipsychotics."
Aussie FDA Secretly Probing Anti-Depressant Problems
The Therapeutic Goods Administration, Australia's FDA, is reportedly conducting a review of problems with anti-depressants in secret with no public input, unlike what's gone on in the US and UK.
Sydney psychiatrist Yolande Lucire, who has reported between 300 and 400 cases to the TGA in which she claims patients have had serious reactions to the anti-depressants, including some who had committed suicide, said the inquiry must be made public. 'This is being done in secret,' Dr Lucire said. 'We have no terms of reference, no opportunity for people to make submissions; it's a scandal.'
US: Minnesota Sues Eli Lilly Over Zyprexa Marketing
Minnesota has joined a growing number of states charging the drugmaker with downplaying side effects of the antipsychotic and marketing the drug for unapproved uses. The state’s attorney general filed a lawsuit in federal court last week, saying Minnesota spent more than $175 million through public health programs on Zyprexa prescriptions between 2000 and 2007.
Pharmaceutical Industry Hustlers – SSRI Antidepressants Pushers
After twenty long years, it appears that the epidemic in mental disorders in America might be coming to an end. It won’t happen because of any great medical breakthrough but rather because the perpetrators of the greatest healthcare fraud in history are finally being exposed. The demolition of the giant “psycho-pharmaceutical complex” appears to be on the horizon.
US: Secret Pharma Payments To Vermont Doctors Disclosed
Payments by drugmakers to Vermont docs between July 2002 and June 2004 totaled more than $4.9 million, much more than the $2.7 million that was previously reported by Public Citizen in an article in the Journal of the American Medical Association in March 2007, the advocacy group now says.
The payment details were hidden by 21 drugmakers that designated the data as trade secrets...
Nigeria Seeks US Defendants In Pfizer Troval Trial
The latest delay in the criminal case is to acccommodate the federal government, which wants to serve paper on defendants in the US, Reuters reports. The criminal charges include over 20 counts covering alleged breaches of import, supply and registration regulations for the antibiotic and laws relating to a notorious clinical trial that took place in 1996.
The federal government and the northern state of Kano also filed civil cases against Pfizer, claiming $8.5 billion in damages over the trial, which took place during a meningitis epidemic that killed 12,000 children. Nigeria says Trovan caused the death of 11 children and left dozens with disabilities, and that Pfizer did not obtain proper regulatory approval for the trial and misled parents.
Aftermath of John Le Carré's The Constant Gardener?
THE HUMAN PAPILLOMA VIRUS VACCINE FRAUD
Natural News reporter Mike Adams has uncovered some interesting facts about this vaccine. The FDA has been aware since 2003 that Human Papillloma Virus does not cause cervical cancer. The Gardasil vaccine is unable to eradicate HPV virus from women who have been exposed to HPV (nearly all sexually active women).
To make matters even worse it has now been learned that vaccinating women with Gardasil may actually increase the risk that those women harboring a benign cervical HPV viral infection have a 44.6 percent increased risk of having their benign HPV infection converted into a precancerous state by the HPV vaccine administration. Thus women vaccinated with Gardasil not only receive no benefit those who were sexually active before the vaccine administration have become at increased risk for developing cervical cancer.
The GM Genocide: Thousands of Indian Farmers are Committing Suicide After Using Genetically Modified Crops
When Prince Charles claimed thousands of Indian farmers were killing themselves after using GM crops, he was branded a scaremonger. In fact, as this chilling dispatch reveals, it's even WORSE than he feared.
Prince Charles is so distressed by the plight of the suicide farmers that he is setting up a charity, the Bhumi Vardaan Foundation, to help those affected and promote organic Indian crops instead of GM.
India's farmers are also starting to fight back. As well as taking GM seed distributors hostage and staging mass protests, one state government is taking legal action against Monsanto for the exorbitant costs of GM seeds.
This came too late for Shankara Mandauker, who was 80,000 rupees (about £1,000) in debt when he took his own life. 'I told him that we can survive,' his widow said, her children still by her side as darkness fell. 'I told him we could find a way out. He just said it was better to die.'
But the debt does not die with her husband: unless she can find a way of paying it off, she will not be able to afford the children's schooling. They will lose their land, joining the hordes seen begging in their thousands by the roadside throughout this vast, chaotic country.
Taxpayer's money is being misused in the global financial crisis to rescuing those that have grown super-rich by draining the real economy, creating poverty, and fuelling the destruction of the earth. Time to replace the dominant model with a circular eco-economy that mimics nature.
Why Small Plastic Particles May Pose a Big Problem in the Oceans
Over the past few years, scientists have begun to realize that the increasing volume of plastic materials slowly decomposing in the world's oceans may present a long-term problem for marine food chains already reeling from overfishing and other anthropogenic insults.
A nourishing and abundant future
Resilience refers to the ability of a system, from individual people to whole economies, to hold together and maintain their ability to function in the face of change and shocks from the outside. This book, The Transition Handbook, argues that in our current (and long overdue) efforts to drastically cut carbon emissions, we must also give equal importance to the building, or more accurately to the rebuilding, of resilience.
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More information out there...
There is much I cannot cover but other sources for this kind of information exist and are active.
The Alternative Medicine Yahoo Group is a place where you can discuss and exchange information on what is happening in the world of natural health.
For the influence of electromagnetic waves from radio, mobile phones and other radio emitting devices, check out the emfrefugee group on Yahoo.
If you are interested in a different take on the news that isn't health centered but is certainly fun, check out Robin Good TV News.
A few sites to keep up to date with the other side of world affairs, the stuff you won't necessarily find on your tv or in the papers:
... and remember,
The individual is supreme and finds its way through intuition
posted by Sepp Hasslberger on Sunday November 9 2008
updated on Wednesday November 24 2010
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