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Found 136 results
  1. News Article
    A new state of the art institute for antimicrobial research is to open at Oxford University thanks to a £100 million donation from Ineos. Ineos, one of the world’s largest manufacturing companies, and the University of Oxford are launching a new world-leading institute to combat the growing global issue of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), which currently causes an estimated 1.5 million excess deaths each year- and could cause over 10m deaths per year by 2050. Predicted to also create a global economic toll of $100 trillion by mid-century, it is arguably the greatest economic and healthcare challenge facing the world post-Covid. It is bacterial resistance, caused by overuse and misuse of antibiotics, which arguably poses the broadest threat to global populations. The world is fast running out of effective antibiotics as bacteria evolve to develop resistance to our taken-for-granted treatments. Without urgent collaborative action to prevent common microbes becoming multi-drug resistant (commonly known as ‘superbugs’), we could return to a world where taken-for-granted treatments such as chemotherapy and hip replacements could become too risky, childbirth becomes extremely dangerous, and even a basic scratch could kill. The rapid progression of antibacterial resistance is a natural process, exacerbated by significant overuse and misuse of antibiotics not only in human populations but especially in agriculture. Meanwhile, the field of new drug discovery has attracted insufficient scientific interest and funding in recent decades meaning no new antibiotics have been successfully developed since the 1980s. Alongside its drug discovery work, the IOI intends to partner with other global leaders in the field of Antimicrobial Resistance (AMR) to raise awareness and promote responsible use of antimicrobial drugs. The academic team will contribute to research on the type and extent of drug resistant microbes across the world, and critically, will seek to attract and train the brightest minds in science to tackle this ‘silent pandemic’. Read full story Source: University of Oxford, 19 January 2021
  2. Content Article
    Content includes: What is neonatal herpes? What is the herpes simplex virus? How can a baby catch herpes? What are the signs & symptoms of neonatal herpes? How do I know if my baby has an infection? What is the treatment for neonatal herpes? What can I do to prevent my baby from getting neonatal herpes? I am pregnant or breastfeeding, how can I protect my baby? I have a cold sore, what should I do to make sure I don't pass the virus to a baby? How do I wash my hands properly to help keep babies safe? Follow the link below to Kit Tarka Foundation's website, to find out more.
  3. News Article
    The social restrictions imposed upon our lives because of coronavirus have taken a toll on our emotions, finances, and our waistlines, but there may yet be a silver-lining: a reduction in cases of other infectious diseases. From the common cold to chickenpox, there has been a substantial drop in the number of infections being reported to GPs, despite children returning to school – and that looks set to continue as winter approaches and lockdown restrictions tighten across the country. According to the latest GP surveillance data for England there were 1.5 cases of common cold for every 100,000 people during the week ending 6 October – compared to 92.5 cases reported during the same week last year. The rate of other non-Covid respiratory illnesses was also lower, at 131 for every 100,000 people, compared to 303 last year. Influenza-like illness is also down, at 131 cases for every 100,000 people, versus 303 cases in 2019. Although there has been in increase since the start of the school term, for all of these illnesses, infection rates remain below expected seasonal levels for this time of year, the report by the Royal College of General Practitioners’ research and surveillance centre said. Equivalent data was not immediately accessible for Wales and Scotland. GP consultations for other infectious diseases like strep throat, tonsillitis and impetigo, as well as infectious intestinal diseases like norovirus are also well below the five-year average – and have been since late March – the report suggests. Read full story Source: The Guardian, 9 October 2020
  4. Content Article
    This webinar explores NHS acute sector experiences during the peak of COVID-19 in Spring and Summer of 2020, reflects on global figures and sequalae and contrast with sepsis on a national and global scale including the importance of AMR. 5 key learning points: Understanding of the impact of COVID-19. Learn about after effects of C-19 and sepsis in survivors. Remind ourselves about the global scale of sepsis. Understand this in the context of AMR. Reflect on global and national policy strategies.
  5. News Article
    The emergence of antimicrobial resistance (AMR), including drug-resistant bacteria, or “superbugs”, pose far greater risks to human health than Covid-19, threatening to put modern medicine “back into the dark ages”, an Australian scientist has warned, ahead of a three-year study into drug-resistant bacteria in Fiji. “If you thought Covid was bad, you don’t want anti-microbial resistance,” Dr Paul De Barro, biosecurity research director at Australia’s national science agency, the CSIRO, told The Guardian. “I don’t think I’m exaggerating to say it’s the biggest human health threat, bar none. Covid is not anywhere near the potential impact of AMR. We would go back into the dark ages of health.” WHO warns overuse of antibiotics for COVID-19 will cause more deaths While AMR is an emerging public health threat across the globe, in the Pacific, where the risk of the problem is acute, drug-resistant bacteria could stretch the region’s fragile health systems beyond breaking point. An article in the BMJ Global Health journal reported there was little official health data – and low levels of public knowledge - around antimicrobial resistance in the Pacific, and that high rates of infectious disease and antibiotic prescription were driving up risks. “A challenge for Pacific island countries and territories is trying to curtail antimicrobial excess, without jeopardising antimicrobial access for those who need them,” the paper argued. Read full story Source: The Guardian, 10 September 2020
  6. News Article
    Babies are at risk of dying from common treatable infections because NHS staff on maternity wards are not following national guidance and are short-staffed and overworked, an investigation has revealed. The Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch (HSIB), a national safety watchdog, has warned that NHS staff on maternity wards face sometimes conflicting advice on treating women who are positive for a group B streptococcus (GBS) infection. They are also making errors in women’s care because of the pressure of work and a lack of staff, with antibiotics not being administered when they should be. HSIB’s specialist investigators examined 39 safety incidents in which GSB had been identified, and found that the infection had contributed to six baby deaths, six stillbirths and three cases of babies being left with severe brain damage. In its report, the watchdog warned that the problems on maternity wards meant that even in cases where mothers were known to be positive for GBS infection, this wasn’t shared with the mother or noted in the record, resulting in the standard care and antibiotics not being provided. It added: “The identification and escalation of care for babies who show signs of GBS infection after birth was missed. This has resulted in severe brain injury and death for some of the affected babies.” Read full story Source: The Independent, 19 July 2020
  7. Content Article
    The Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch (HSIB) published ‘Summary of themes arising from the Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch maternity programme (April 2018-December 2019)’ in February 2020. This described eight themes for further exploration in order to highlight opportunities for system-wide learning; one of these themes was group B streptococcus (GBS). This report, Severe brain injury, early neonatal death and intrapartum stillbirth associated with group B streptococcus infection, highlights a number of patient safety concerns and recommends that maternity care providers should consider the findings and make necessary changes to their local systems to ensure that mothers and babies receive care in line with national guidance. The Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch will keep the theme of group B streptococcus under review and consider a future national investigation to explore this subject further.
  8. News Article
    An outbreak of norovirus on hospital wards across the NHS has forced the closure of more than 1,100 beds in the last week. The news comes amid record numbers of patients turning up to emergency departments at some hospitals and higher than expected cases of flu. There are fears the dire situation could herald the start of a winter crisis for the NHS which is starting earlier than in previous years. Miriam Deakin, Director of Policy and Strategy at NHS Providers, which represents hospitals said: “We are going into what is traditionally the NHS’s busiest time with a health and care system already under severe demand pressure." “Patient safety is the top priority for trusts, but alongside high levels of staff vacancies, an outbreak of flu or norovirus could have a serious effect on the delivery of services.” Read full story Source: The Independent, 5 December 2019
  9. News Article
    In early January, authorities in the Chinese city of Wuhan were trying to keep news of a new coronavirus under wraps. When one doctor tried to warn fellow medics about the outbreak, police paid him a visit and told him to stop. A month later he has been hailed as a hero, after he posted his story from a hospital bed. It's a stunning insight into the botched response by local authorities in Wuhan in the early weeks of the coronavirus outbreak. Dr Li was working at the centre of the outbreak in December when he noticed seven cases of a virus that he thought looked like SARS - the virus that led to a global epidemic in 2003. On 30 December he sent a message to fellow doctors in a chat group warning them about the outbreak and advising they wear protective clothing to avoid infection. What Dr Li didn't know then was that the disease that had been discovered was an entirely new coronavirus. Four days later he was summoned to the Public Security Bureau where he was told to sign a letter. In the letter he was accused of "making false comments" that had "severely disturbed the social order". "We solemnly warn you: If you keep being stubborn, with such impertinence, and continue this illegal activity, you will be brought to justice - is that understood?" He was one of eight people who police said were being investigated for "spreading rumours". At the end of January, Dr Li published a copy of the letter on Weibo and explained what had happened. In the meantime, local authorities had apologised to him but that apology came too late. For the first few weeks of January officials in Wuhan were insisting that only those who came into contact with infected animals could catch the virus. No guidance was issued to protect doctors. "A safer public health environment… requires tens of millions of Li Wenliang," said one reader of Dr Li's post. Read full story Source: BBC News, 4 February 2020
  10. News Article
    A new poll has found only 8 out of the 1,618 respondents believed the health service was ready to deal with an outbreak when asked by The Doctors’ Association UK (DAUK), despite the prime minister’s insistence that the NHS will cope if it is hit by a surge in the number of people falling ill. Common concerns included difficulties coping with increased demand, a shortage of beds and poor staffing levels, according to the group who led the poll. Some doctors asked said they were worried that there could be not enough laboratory space to do testing in the case of a pandemic. Others claimed that NHS 111 had been giving out “inappropriate advice” to go to A&E and GP practices, according to DAUK. “The NHS has already been brought to its knees and many frontline doctors fear that our health system simply will not cope in the event of a Coronavirus (Covid-19) outbreak,” Dr Rinesh Parmar, the DAUK chair, said. “Many hoped the threat of Covid-19 would prompt an honest conversation to address the issue of critical care capacity and our ability to look after our sickest patients. By simply saying ‘the NHS is well prepared to deal with coronovirus’ it seems that yet again doctors’ concerns have been brushed under the carpet.” The findings come after the number of people infected with the coronavirus which rose to 39 in the UK on Monday. Read full story Source: The Independent, 3 March 2020
  11. News Article
    Frontline medics are juggling fears about a lack of beds, a crisis in staffing and worries about their own personal safety as the threat of a large-scale coronavirus outbreak looms, HuffPost UK has learned. With public health officials warning that, in the worst-case scenario, up to 80% of the UK population could be infected with coronavirus, NHS staff said such a scenario would be a “disaster” for the health service. Meanwhile, medics working in the community have warned they are not getting consistent advice on how to protect their own health. Dr Punam Krishan, a GP in Glasgow, told HuffPost UK that while the NHS deals with thousands of cases of cold, flu and norovirus each year, the threat of Covid-19 is still worrying. “Obviously as frontline workers we are most at risk,” she said. “So I’m not going to lie, yes – it does provoke anxiety. Particularly because the signs don’t show immediately – there’s an incubation period that’s up to 14 days.” This means that someone who has unknowingly been in contact with a coronavirus patient and is not yet showing symptoms of the virus could come into the practice. That thought “can trigger a bit of panic”, Krishan said. Read full story Source: HuffPost UK, 11 March 2020 Are you concerned? Do you feel prepared? Join in our online hub poll
  12. News Article
    The Prime Minister has said everyone in the UK should avoid "non-essential" travel and contact with others to curb coronavirus as the country's death toll hit 55. Boris Johnson said people should work from home where possible as part of a range of stringent new measures, which include: 1. Everyone of every age should avoid any non-essential social contact and travel. 2. Everyone to avoid pubs, clubs, cinemas, theatres and restaurants etc. 3. Everyone to avoid large gatherings - including sports events. 4. Everyone should work from home where possible. 5. If anyone in a house has CV19 symptoms, everyone in that house has to isolate for at least 14 days 6. Over 70s and those at risk (including pregnant women) to stay home for 12 weeks, which means no going out to shops or collect anything etc., unless there is no other option. Schools will not close for the moment. Read full story Source: BBC News, 16 March 2020
  13. News Article
    St Bartholomew’s Hospital is to be the emergency electives centre for the London region as part of a major reorganisation to cope with the coronavirus outbreak. Senior sources told HSJ the London tertiary hospital, which is run by Barts Health Trust, will be a “clean” site providing emergency elective care as part of the capital’s covid-19 plan. It is understood the specialist Royal Brompton and Harefield Foundation Trust will also be taking some emergency cardiac patients. The news follows NHS England chief executive Sir Simon Stevens telling MPs on Tuesday that all systems were working out how best to optimise resources and some hospitals could be used to exclusively treat coronavirus patients in the coming months. Read full story (paywalled) Source: HSJ, 18 March 2020
  14. News Article
    Draper & Dash, a leading predictive patient flow provider, has launched a COVID-19 live hospital planning and demand impact assessment tool. The company said it has been working around the clock to deliver its vital tool to support impact assessment. It allows trusts to view and analyse national Hospital Episode Statistics (HES) data, alongside a number of live data sources on COVID-19 cases by the minute, as they emerge across the globe. The system models the impact of increased volume and complexity at a local and system level, providing visibility of ICU, theatres, and overall bed impact, and connects this live information to each trust’s clinical workforce. The tool shows immediate impacts on beds and staff under a range of selected scenarios. Read full story Source: Health Tech Newspaper, 18 March 2020
  15. News Article
    COVID-19 is stable for several hours to days in aerosols and on surfaces, according to a new study from National Institutes of Health, CDC, UCLA and Princeton University scientists in The New England Journal of Medicine. The scientists found that severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) was detectable in aerosols for up to three hours, up to four hours on copper, up to 24 hours on cardboard and up to two to three days on plastic and stainless steel. The results provide key information about the stability of SARS-CoV-2, which causes COVID-19 disease, and suggests that people may acquire the virus through the air and after touching contaminated objects. The findings affirm the guidance from public health professionals to use precautions similar to those for influenza and other respiratory viruses to prevent the spread of SARS-CoV-2: Avoid close contact with people who are sick. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. Stay home when you are sick. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe. Read full story Source: National Institutes of Health, 17 March 2020
  16. Content Article
    The spread of COVID-19 demands global cooperation among governments, international organisations and the business community. This multistakeholder cooperation is at the centre of the World Economic Forum’s mission. The new COVID Action Platform will focus on three priorities: Galvanise the global business community for collective action. Protect people’s livelihoods and facilitate business continuity. Mobilise cooperation and business support for the COVID-19 response.
  17. Content Article
    The document covers five key topics: when are video consultations appropriate? how can a practice get ready for them? how can clinicians conduct high-quality video consultations? what can patients do to prepare for and take part in them? what is the research evidence for their quality and safety?
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