Geneva, June 7 (IANS) The World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday released a handbook to help countries measure their foodborne disease burden and identify food safety system needs.The handbook, released on the occasion of World Food Safety Day, can also help countries assess the causes, magnitude and distribution of foodborne diseases, strengthen national infrastructure and better protect people's health.World Food Safety Day is observed on June 7 every year. This year's theme is 'Safe food today for a healthy tomorrow'."Food should sustain and support human health, not harm it," WHO Director-General Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus said in a statement."WHO's new handbook will help countries collect and analyse data to inform sustained investments in food safety. The Covid-19 pandemic has demonstrated the intimate links between the health of humans, animals and the planet that sustains us."WHO will continue to work with partners with a One Health approach to keep communities safe from foodborne disease," he said.Every year, 600 million cases of foodborne illnesses are reported. In 2010, 4,20,000 people died due to diseases such as salmonella and E.coli infection, a third of them children under five years of age.This figure is estimated to increase year after year, but it is difficult to get a clear picture of the real impact foodborne diseases are having around the world.In 2020, the World Health Assembly had adopted a new resolution mandating the WHO to monitor the global burden of foodborne and zoonotic diseases at the national, regional and international levels and to report on the global burden of foodborne diseases with up-to-date estimates.--IANSrvt/arm
Hyderabad, May 20 (IANS) The Telangana government has declared fungal infection mucormycosis as a notifiable disease under Epidemic Diseases Act 1897.All the government and private health facilities shall follow guidelines for screening, diagnosis and management of mucormycosis issued by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare and Indian Council of Medical Research, says a notification issued by the Director of Public Health.It is also made mandatory for all the government and private health facilities to report all suspected and confirmed cases of mucormycosis (also known as black fungus) to the health department.Medical superintendents of all government and private hospitals have been directed to ensure strict compliance to the guidelines and send report on daily basis.The move comes amid growing number of cases of black fungus, mostly seen in Covid-19 survivors.Many patients are approaching Government-run ENT Hospital at Koti in Hyderabad, which has been designated to treat the fungal infection.In view of shortage of medicine for the treatment of mucormycosis, the health authorities have regulated its sale.State Minister K. T. Rama Rao is receiving several requests on Twitter from relatives of black fungus infected persons for Liposomal Amphotericin B Injection.The Minister is suggesting all such individuals to send an email to the Director of medical Education in the prescribed format.The health department has formed a committee to look into every request and provide the drug after due verification with the hospitals concerned.Director of Medical Education K. Ramesh Reddy had said Tuesday that there are around 50 Mucromycosis cases at government hospitals and another 30-40 in private hospitals.Stating that the disease is not contagious like Covid-19, he advised people not to panic.He said those who have recovered from Covid-19 and have diabetes should be more cautious."Patients must look out for symptoms such as facial muscle pains, bloody discharge from nose, cold, and brown discoloration or spores in mucus," Reddy said.The Director of Medical Education said Covid-19 patients who have recovered still need to wear masks even at home for few months. Recovered patients, especially immune compromised ones, will have low immunity levels and thus will be vulnerable to the fungal infection.--IANSms/sdr/
Geneva, May 17 (IANS) Working 55 or more hours per week is associated with an estimated 35 per cent higher risk of a stroke and a 17 per cent higher risk of dying from ischemic heart disease, compared to working 35-40 hours a week, according to a study published on Monday.The study, by the World Health Organization and the International Labour Organization, showed that in 2016, 398,000 people died from stroke and 347,000 from heart disease as a result of having worked at least 55 hours a week. The findings are published in Environment International.The new analysis comes as the Covid-19 pandemic shines a spotlight on managing working hours; the pandemic is accelerating developments that could feed the trend towards increased working time."The Covid-19 pandemic has significantly changed the way many people work," said Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, WHO Director-General, in a statement."Teleworking has become the norm in many industries, often blurring the boundaries between home and work. In addition, many businesses have been forced to scale back or shut down operations to save money, and people who are still on the payroll end up working longer hours. No job is worth the risk of stroke or heart disease. Governments, employers and workers need to work together to agree on limits to protect the health of workers," Ghebreyesus added.The work-related disease burden was particularly significant in men (72 per cent of deaths occurred among males), people living in the Western Pacific and South-East Asia regions, and middle-aged or older workers.Most of the deaths recorded were among people dying aged 60-79 years, who had worked for 55 hours or more per week between the ages of 45 and 74 years."Working 55 hours or more per week is a serious health hazard," said Maria Neira, Director, Department of Environment, Climate Change and Health, at the World Health Organization."It's time that we all, governments, employers, and employees wake up to the fact that long working hours can lead to premature death," Neira said.--IANSrvt/pgh
Chandigarh, May 15 (IANS) After the surfacing of 27 cases of black fungus, Haryana Health Minister Anil Vij on Saturday said black fungus has been declared a notified disease in the state.Now, if a patient of black fungus is diagnosed in any government or private hospital of the state, it will have to be reported to the Chief Medical Officer (CMO) of the local district so that appropriate steps can be taken to prevent the disease.Vij said for the treatment of the disease, senior doctors of the PGIMS in Rohtak will conduct video conferencing with all doctors who are treating coronavirus in the state and will inform them about the treatment of the disease. --IANS vg/ash
Hyderabad, April 11 (IANS) Depression and anxiety could be the symptoms leading to Parkinson's disease, says doctors on the occasion of World Parkinson's Day on Sunday.Parkinson's disease is a progressive nervous system disorder that affects the movement of the human body. Symptoms start gradually, sometimes starting with a barely noticeable tremor in just one hand. Tremors are common but the disorder also commonly causes stiffness or slowing of movement.While proper diagnosis of Parkinson's disease is difficult, particularly in the early stages, it may take years before the ailment is accurately diagnosed. The fact that symptoms and progression of symptoms vary between individuals adds to the complexity of diagnosing Parkinson's disease."Though Parkinson's disease causes slowing of overall body movements, mental health issues are quite common (70-80 per cent) in such patients. Not often the disease manifests with mental disorders (anxiety, depression) rather than physical slowing. These mental disorders have a greater impact on the overall quality of life than the physical disability. Depression is the commonest mental disorder presenting as reduced interest and motivation along with fear of socialising among Parkinson's disease victims," said Abhinay M. Huchche, Consultant Neuro-Physician, Sree Lakshmi Gayatri (SLG) Hospitals.According to him, various types of sleep disturbances, visual hallucinations, thoughts filled with paranoia are also noticed in the patients.Screening for mental health issues in the first visit to the neurologist is a must. In the busy clinics, the caretaker must proactively bring up issues pertaining to mental health so that they could be addressed. Usually a multidisciplinary approach is needed to tackle mental health issues."An exercise programme for victims of Parkinson's disease helps boost their motivation and support groups help them overcome the depression. Appropriate medicines are added as per the need. Psychosis (hallucinations and delusions) wherein Parkinson's disease individuals lose touch with reality has to be dealt with sensitively. Caregivers and society need to be told that it is their faulty mind and not the original person that is behaving abnormally. Psychology, therapy and drugs form the core of therapy," added Abhinay Huchche.Commenting on the ailment's frequency, Kailas Mirche, Consultant Neurologist, Continental Hospitals, pointed Parkinson's disease is the second most common neurodegenerative disorder after Alzheimer's disease. The ailment is witnessed more commonly in men than in women. "The prevalence of Parkinson's increases with age and only 4 per cent of Parkinson's cases are diagnosed before the age of 50. While approximately 1 per cent of the population above 60 years suffers from Parkinson's, its instance increases to 5 per cent among those above 86 years.""Parkinson's disease is already the fastest-growing neurological disorder in the world; and some international studies suggest that the number of people with Parkinson's has increased by over 35 per cent in the last 10 years. Although Parkinson's disease can't be cured, it is important its victims know about the condition at an early stage which could be managed using medications. Occasionally, doctors may suggest surgery to regulate certain regions of brain to improve the symptoms," Ketan Chaturvedi, Senior Consultant, Neurology, Wockhardt Hospital at Nagpur."Mental health issues are underrated, stigmatised and unaddressed in our society; and such conditions could be linked to more serious complications like Parkinson's disease. It is important we take a sympathetic approach to the victims of Parkinson's disease, and the social circle around such individuals promptly identifies these symptoms and provides help in improving the overall quality of life of these individuals," added Praveen Changala, Consultant -- Neuro Physician, Aware Gleneagles Global Hospital, LB Nagar.--IANSms/khz
New York (IANS) - Psychosocial stress -- typically resulting from difficulty coping with challenging environments -- may work synergistically to put women at higher risk of developing coronary heart disease, a new study suggests.
The findings indicate that the effects of job strain and social strain -- the negative aspect of social relationships -- on women is a powerful one-two punch. Together they are associated with a 21 per cent higher risk of developing coronary heart disease.
"The Covid-19 pandemic has highlighted ongoing stresses for women in balancing paid work and social stressors," said researchers Yvonne Michael, Associate Professor at Drexel University in the US.
"My hope is that these findings are a call for better methods of monitoring stress in the workplace and remind us of the dual-burden working women face as a result of their unpaid work as caregivers at home," Michael added.
The study also found that high-stress life events, such as a spouse's death, divorce/separation or physical or verbal abuse, as well as social strain, were each independently linked with a 12 per cent and 9 per cent higher risk of coronary heart disease, respectively.
For the study, published in the Journal of the American Heart Association, the team used data from a nationally representative sample of 80,825 postmenopausal women.
In the current follow-up study, the researchers evaluated the effect of psychosocial stress from job strain, stressful life events and social strain (through a survey), and associations among these forms of stress, on coronary heart disease.
Nearly 5 per cent of the women developed coronary heart disease during the 14-year, seven-month study.
Coronary heart disease, the leading cause of death in the US, occurs with the heart's arteries become narrow and cannot bring sufficient oxygenated blood to the heart.