New Delhi, June 21 (IANS) Termed as a 'great example' of the fusion of modern technology, the 'WHO M-Yoga' app launched by Prime Minister Narendra Modi on the oaccasion of International Day of Yoga on Monday aims to help spread yoga around the world and contribute to the efforts of the 'One World, One Health' motto.
The app will provide many videos of yoga training and practice based on common yoga protocols in different languages. It will help promote yoga and wellness among the people around the world, especially during the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Modi launched the app while addressing the nation on the occasion of the 7th International Day of Yoga, saying the app will play an instrumental role in the rehabilitation of the health of Covid patients who have recovered from the disease.
"When India proposed the International Day of Yoga in the United Nations, the spirit behind it was to make the yoga science accessible to the entire world. Today India has taken another important step in this direction along with the United Nations and the WHO.
"Now the world is going to get the power of the M-Yoga app. In this app, many videos of yoga training will be available in different languages of the world, based on the common yoga protocol. It is also a great example of the fusion of modern technology and ancient science. I am sure the app will play a big role in expanding yoga across the globe, making the efforts of 'One World, One Health' a success," the Prime Minister said.
The Ministry of AYUSH and the World Health Organization (WHO) had jointly undertaken a project in mid-2019, focusing on mobile yoga. It envisaged the concept of 'Be Healthy, Be Mobile' (BHBM) under the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals to achieve Universal Health Coverage by 2030.
The BHBM initiative is a global partnership led by the WHO, which supports the scale up of mobile health (m-Health) technology within the scope of the national health system to combat non-communicable diseases (NCDs).
In order to achieve the above objectives, a memorandum of understanding was signed in July 2019 between the WHO and the Ministry of AYUSH.
The M-Yoga project focused on four areas: Common yoga protocol for general wellness; yoga for mental health and resilience; yoga for adolescents; and yoga for pre-diabetics.
Building upon this, a requisite handbook and mobile applications were to be developed by the Morarji Desai National Institute of Yoga (MDNIY) in consultation with technology partners from the WHO.
The work on the handbook is in the final stages and the currently launched app is available in two of the six official languages -- English and Hindi.
Thiruvananthapuram, June 21 (IANS) Kerala Chief Minister Pinarayi Vijayan on Monday said that modern day yoga is a proven scientific activity and need not be linked to spiritualism or to any one religion.
"If that happens, then a huge section of the populace might not get the desired benefit of yoga. Even the UN General Assembly has spoken about the scientific aspects of yoga. Hence modern day yoga should not be linked to spiritualism or to one religion," he said, inaugurating the 7th International Day of Yoga.
Vijayan asked the people to ensure that yoga is remembered not just on this day.
"The benefits of yoga, by now, have been proved and hence, it should become a part of our life and one should practice it daily. It not only refreshes our mental health but also our total well being and both these aspects are interlinked," he added.
Vijayan also pointed out that the Yoga Association of Kerala, during the Covid pandemic, had imparted yoga training to 50,000 people here as a preventive measure.
With the Covid pandemic continuing unabated in the state, in certain Central government institutes, the day was being celebrated virtually and there was an online talk at the Rajiv Gandhi Centre for Biotechnology here.
Likewise the Central public sector mini-ratna HLL's management academy is conducting a three-day "Immunity Enhancement Programme" in light of Covid, as part of the Yoga Day.
The Kerala unit of NCC also organised various programmes associated with the Yoga Day.
New Delhi, June 21 (IANS) At a time when the entire world has been fighting the Covid-19 pandemic, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Monday said people's enthusiasm for Yoga Day has not diminished and Yoga remained a ray of hope amid the crisis.
Addressing the nation on the event of 7th International Day of Yoga, the Prime Minister said in this difficult time, even as people are in so much trouble, they could forget Yoga or ignore it.
"But on the contrary, people's enthusiasm for yoga has increased, love for yoga has increased."
"When the invisible virus of Corona had knocked the world, then no country was prepared for it, by means, by strength and by mental state. We all have seen that in such difficult times, Yoga has become a great medium of self-confidence," Modi said.
Noting that whenever India and its sages spoken of health, Modi said it has not only meant physical health. "That is why so much emphasis has been laid on physical health as well as mental health in Yoga.
"Yoga shows us the way from stress to strength and from negativity to creativity. Yoga takes us from depression to ecstasy and from ecstasy to 'prasad'."
The Prime Minister mentioned if there are threats to humanity, Yoga often gives us a way of holistic health. "Yoga also gives us a happier way of life. I am sure, Yoga will continue playing its preventive, as well as promotive role in healthcare of masses."
When India proposed the International Day of Yoga in the United Nations, the Prime Minister said it was the spirit behind it to make this science of Yoga accessible to the whole world.
Today, Modi announced that India has taken another important step in this direction along with the United Nations and the World Health Organisation.
"Now the world is going to get the power of M-Yoga app. In this app, many videos of yoga training will be available in different languages of the world based on the Common Yoga Protocol."
The event began at 6.30 a.m. virtually on Monday.
The seventh International Yoga Day is being celebrated in 190 countries across the globe on Monday. The theme for this year is 'Yoga for wellness'.
Preparations for International Yoga Day start 3-4 months prior to June 21 and millions of people are introduced to this practice in the spirit of a mass movement.
New Delhi, June 20 (IANS) Multiplying the cost per unit of early and advanced cancer as per the results of a study, India spent approximately Rs 2,386 crore in 2020 on oral cancer treatment, paid for by insurance schemes, government and private sector, spending out of pocket payments and charitable donations or a combination of these.
This is a significant portion of the healthcare budget allocation the government made in 2019-20, towards a single disease. Without any inflation in costs, this will result in an economic burden on the country of Rs 23,724 crore over the next ten years.
Tata Memorial Centre Published the first of its kind study on the cost of illness and treatment of oral cancer in India.
"This straining economic impact of oral cancer treatment strongly suggests that prevention must be one of the key mitigation strategies for addressing affordability," said the study, adding that almost all oral cancers are caused by some form of tobacco and areca nut use, either direct or as a secondhand intake.
It is very important for our country to take adequate measures to curb this menace and mitigate the economic burden caused by just one of the hundreds of diseases caused by tobacco consumption, it said.
"Early detection strategies leading to just 20 per cent reduction in advanced stage disease could save almost Rs 250 crore annually."
According to the World Health Organisation (WHO), the study further said cancer is the second leading cause of death globally, with approximately 70 per cent of cases occurring in low and middle-income countries.
'India's cancer scenario is burdened with oral cavity cancer being the most common among men. In fact, India accounted for almost a third of the global incidence in 2020."
Dr R.A. Badwe, Director, Tata Memorial Center said, "As per the GLOBOCAN statistics, the rate of new cases being diagnosed has increased by a staggering 68 per cent in the past two decades alone, making it a real public health crisis.
"To add to this, accessibility to health services is low, which coupled with poor health literacy results in a majority of cases presenting with advanced stage disease that is often difficult to treat."
Approximately, 10 per cent of the patients have progressive disease that makes them untreatable and can only be offered supportive care for their symptoms.
Most of those who do receive some forms of treatment are left unemployed and become an economic burden on their friends and family. Even patients with health insurance and/or government aid, typically seen as immune to the cost of healthcare, face serious challenges as most schemes do not provide the actual amount needed for treatment.
This eventually increases their out-of-pocket expenses, pushing a significant proportion of the patients themselves and their families into a never-ending cycle of debt.
To tackle these issues, a Tata Memorial Centre team, headed by Dr Pankaj Chaturvedi, set out to conduct a cost of illness analysis that would provide invaluable information for policy makers that make appropriate allocation of resources towards cancer.
This is the first such study in India and among a handful globally, whose estimates were calculated, utilizing a bottom-up approach where data was collected prospectively for each service as it was used.
This enormous data collection has resulted in determining the direct healthcare costs of treating oral cancer, that is, the per patient cost borne by a healthcare provider that is directly attributable to treating oral cancer.
Dr Arjun Singh, Research Fellow at Tata Memorial Hospital and the lead author of the study said that the unit cost of treating advanced stages (Rs 2,02,892) was found to be 42 per cent greater than early stages (Rs 1,17,135).
At the same time, there was an average reduction of 11 per cent in the unit costs, as socioeconomic status increased.
Medical equipment accounted for 97.8 per cent of capital costs, with the highest contributor being the radiology services that included CT, MRI and PET scan.
Variable costs that included consumables for surgery in advanced stages were 1.4 times higher than early stages, said the study, adding "with the addition of additional chemo and radiotherapy to surgery, the average cost of treatment increased by 44.6 per cent."
"About 60-80 per cent of the cases of oral cancer visit their specialist oncologists at advanced stages."
In view of the second wave of Covid-19 that has put extreme pressure on diagnostic path labs, the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) recently approved Covid-19 home testing using Rapid Antigen Tests (RATs). The self-use test can be used by symptomatic individuals and immediate contacts of confirmed cases as per the ICMR guidelines. Users of this test will not need sample collection by a healthcare professional. This will ease pressure on overburdened labs and reduce delays in testing. However, these tests should be done wisely and in lieu of the said Covid-19 norms.
According to the ICMR, individuals who test positive using the home testing kit may be considered as true positives, and no-repeat testing is required. All symptomatic individuals who test negative must get tested by RT-PCR, as RATs are likely to miss few positive cases.
Also, Read► One in 100 deaths is by suicide: WHO
How Does The Home Testing Kit Work?
Each kit provides all testing materials, instructions to use (IFU) leaflet and a biohazard bag to be safely disposed of after testing. The test is designed to be done using a nasal swab (not the deep nasopharyngeal swab) to reduce the discomfort. The kit is supposed to provide results in 15 minutes and people who test positive should immediately isolate so that they do not infect others, and quickly contact the local municipal bodies and their healthcare provider. Those who test negative and continue to experience Covid-like symptoms should seek follow-up care from their healthcare provider and conduct an RT-PCR test.
How Do You Know When The Result Is Positive?
The kit has a control line and a test line that will indicate the result. If both Control Line C and the Test Line T appear in the cartridge, the presence of novel coronavirus antigen is confirmed, and the result is positive. This takes up to around 15 minutes for results to appear.
How Do You Know When The Result Is Negative?
If only quality Control Line C appears but the Test Line T does not appear, this indicates that novel coronavirus antigen has not been detected and the result is negative.
How Do You Know When The Result Is Invalid?
For invalid results, if the quality control line C is not observed, it will be invalid regardless of whether there is a test line T. In this case, the test shall be conducted again.
What Do Positive Results Indicate?
Positive results indicate the presence of viral antigens. People who test positive with the home Covid-19 Antigen Test should self-isolate and seek to follow up care with their physician or healthcare provider for further action.
What Are The Possible Disadvantages Of These Tests?
There could a possible discomfort while sample collection, if you do not do it correctly. Also, RATs have the tendency to interpret incorrect results. The other possibility is that people may test positive and resort to self-medication which could be harmful to them.
Are There Any Preparation To Do Before The Test?
Firstly, it is important that you find a clean place to do the test.
* Identify a table and sanitise the surface thoroughly.
* Wash your hands with soap, and make sure that your hands are dry before you perform the test.
* Tear the pouch and lay the contents of the kit on the table.
* Before you proceed with the test, please download the app mentioned in the testing kit, fill in the credentials and then proceed with the test. This is important so that no positive case is missed.
Always remember that there are many factors that come into play when it comes to home test kits. These tests work best with people who have symptoms of Covid-19. If you test a little early or say if you are asymptomatic, most likely your test may show negative and that might give you a false sense of reassurance that this negative test means you are not transmissible, when you really could be. So, if you are sick, it is important to seek medical aid from your healthcare provider, and report the findings of the test to the local municipal body.
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Geneva, June 18 (IANS) One in a hundred deaths globally can directly be attributed to suicide, the World Health Organization (WHO) said, arguing that the Covid-19 pandemic has increased factors for suicide worldwide.
In 2019, more than 700,000 people died of suicide, one in 100 deaths, which was more than HIV, malaria, wars or homicide, the world body said in a statement issued on Thursday.
The same year, prior to the global pandemic, the global suicide rate was decreasing everywhere, the WHO declared, with exception of the Americas region that saw increases of 17 per cent.
Among young people aged 15-29, suicide was the fourth leading cause of death after road injury, tuberculosis and interpersonal violence.
According to the WHO, more than twice as many males die due to suicide as females (12.6 per 100 000 males compared with 5.4 per 100 000 females).
Suicide rates among men are generally higher in high-income countries (16.5 per 100 000).
For females, the highest suicide rates are found in lower-middle-income countries (7.1 per 100 000).
Suicide rates in the WHO African (11.2 per 100 000), European (10.5 per 100 000) and South-East Asia (10.2 per 100 000) regions were higher than the global average (9.0 per 100 000) in 2019.
The lowest suicide rate was in the Eastern Mediterranean region (6.4 per 100 000).
The spread of the coronavirus has caused turmoil in societies, increasing factors of suicide globally, WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus noted.
"Our attention to suicide prevention is even more important now, after many months living with the Covid-19 pandemic, with many of the risk factors for suicide, job loss, financial stress and social isolation, still very much present," Tedros was quoted as saying in the statement.
The WHO announced series of guidance, under the name 'LIVE LIFE', to improve suicide prevention.
The role of media was emphasized by the WHO that declared that many reports of suicide, especially if they described the methods used or focused on celebrities, could increase risks of so-called "copycat suicides".
"We cannot and must not ignore suicide. Each one is a tragedy," Tedros added.