Today's Health News in Snippets

21/10/2021

WHO warns pandemic will drag on into 2022.jpg

WHO warns pandemic will drag on into 2022

The Covid pandemic will "go on for a year longer than it needs to" because poorer countries are not getting the vaccines they need, the World Health Organization (WHO) says.

 

Dr Bruce Aylward, senior leader at the WHO, said it meant the Covid crisis could "easily drag on deep into 2022".

 

Less than 5% of Africa's population have been vaccinated, compared to 40% on most other continents.

 

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Lottery winner dies from painkillers injected by husband angry at her 'squandering' £8m.jp

Lottery winner dies from painkillers injected by husband angry at her 'squandering' £8m

The husband of a lottery winner injected his wife with a cocktail of drugs after accusing her of squandering away their fortune.

 

Ibi Roncaioli was killed by her gynecologist husband Joseph, 72, who was said to be disgruntled by her frittering away her share of the $10million she won with a friend.

 

Prosecutors said Joseph became angered by Ibi's spending habits, which left them without money to see them through retirement, the Toronto Star reported at the time.

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South Africa vaccinating 12 to 17 year-olds.jpg

South Africa vaccinating 12 to 17 year-olds

South Africa has become the first African country to roll out a vaccination programme for children, as 12 to 17 year-olds can now receive the Pfizer jab in the country.

 

However, they will only be allowed to receive one dose.

 

South Africa’s National Health Department aims to vaccinate at least half of the country's 6.5 million children aged between 12 and 17, who before mid-January when schools reopen.

 

South African law provides that children aged 12 and older can consent to their own medical treatment, but, it is recommended that parents have open discussions with them about the benefits of the Covid-19 vaccine to assist in making an informed choice.

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Pfizer vaccine is 93% effective in preventing Covid-19 hospitalization among adolescents,

Pfizer vaccine is 93% effective in preventing Covid-19 hospitalization among adolescents, CDC study finds

The Pfizer/BioNTech vaccine is 93% effective in preventing hospitalization due to Covid-19 among children ages 12 to 18, according to a study by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Vaccine effectiveness differed only slightly within that age group, with 91% effectiveness for children age 12 to 15 and 94% effectiveness for those age 16 to 18.

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India hits a Covid-19 vaccination milestone by delivering 1 billion Covid vaccines.jpg

India hits a Covid-19 vaccination milestone by delivering 1 billion Covid vaccines

India has administered more than 1 billion Covid-19 vaccine doses, a remarkable feat just months after a second wave of infection killed thousands of people across the country.

 

But as India celebrated passing the milestone on Thursday, some experts warned the pandemic threat was not over - in a nation of 1.3 billion, millions of people are yet to receive any dose at all.
 

So far, India has fully vaccinated just 30% of its adult population and given one dose to 74%, according to India's Ministry of Health on October 16.

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Baby urgently needs kidney transplant to save life as mum desperately appeals for donor.jp

Baby urgently needs kidney transplant to save life as mum desperately appeals for donor

A baby is in urgent need of finding a kidney donor in order to save his life.

 

Roman Cook, aged just 19 months, was born prematurely at Scunthorpe General Hospital at 34 weeks, with just one kidney.

 

His family are not a match and are now looking for a living donor before time runs out.

 

When little Roman was just a few weeks old he was diagnosed with chronic kidney disease (CKD), which is a long-term incurable condition where the kidneys do not work as well as they should.

 

It gradually gets worse over time and eventually, the kidneys may stop working altogether.

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Washington State football coach fired for refusing Covid vaccine.jpg

Washington State football coach fired for refusing Covid vaccine

A top US college football coach has been fired for refusing to be vaccinated against Covid-19.

 

Washington State University (WSU) sacked Nick Rolovich, its highest-paid employee, and four of his assistants, for failing to meet a vaccine mandate.

 

The mandate means all state workers in Washington have to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 or lose their jobs.

 

Mr Rolovich, 42, who earned $3.1m (£2.25m) a year, had applied for a religious exemption from the mandate.

 

But WSU's Director of Athletics, Pat Chun, said the exemption had been refused.

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Using e-cigarettes to prevent smoking relapse doesn't work well, study finds.jpg

Using e-cigarettes to prevent smoking relapse doesn't work well, study finds

Using e-cigarettes and other tobacco products to keep from relapsing to cigarettes doesn't appear to be effective, according to a new longitudinal study of nearly 13,000 smokers in the United States.

 

"This is the first study to report on whether cigarette smokers can switch to e-cigarettes without relapsing to cigarette smoking," said study author John Pierce, a professor of family medicine and public health at the UC San Diego Institute for Public Health in the Wertheim School of Public Health and Human Longevity Sciences.

 

"Quitting is the most important thing a smoker can do to improve their health," he said in a statement attached to the study, "but the evidence indicates that switching to e-cigarettes made it less likely, not more likely, to stay off of cigarettes."

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Singapore extends restrictions after reporting highest single-day Covid-19 deaths.jpg

Singapore extends restrictions after reporting highest single-day Covid-19 deaths

Singapore will extend its Covid-19 restrictions for another month after the city-state reported 18 new deaths from the disease on Wednesday, its highest number of the pandemic.

 

In a news release Thursday, Singapore's Ministry of Health said current measures would be extended to November 21, to help contain case numbers, which rose by more than 3,800 on Wednesday.

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Kenya lifts Covid curfew as infections slow.jpg

Kenya lifts Covid curfew as infections slow

Kenya's President Uhuru Kenyatta has announced the lifting of a night time curfew that was imposed to help curb the spread of Covid-19.

 

The curfew had been in place since March 2020 when the country registered its first case of coronavirus.

Mr Kenyatta said the public health measures the government imposed had helped contain the virus.

 

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US surgeons successfully test pig kidney transplant in human patient.jpg

US surgeons successfully test pig kidney transplant in human patient

For the first time, a pig kidney has been transplanted into a human without triggering immediate rejection by the recipient's immune system, a potentially major advance that could eventually help alleviate a dire shortage of human organs for transplant.

 

The procedure done at NYU Langone Health in New York City involved the use of a pig whose genes had been altered so that its tissues no longer contained a molecule known to trigger almost immediate rejection.
 

The recipient was a brain-dead patient with signs of kidney dysfunction whose family consented to the experiment before she was due to be taken off life support, researchers told Reuters.

 

Test results of the transplanted kidney's function "looked pretty normal," said transplant surgeon Dr. Robert Montgomery, who led the study.

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Positive trial results for Valneva Covid vaccine.jpg

Positive trial results for Valneva Covid vaccine

The Valneva Covid vaccine that the UK cancelled a 100m dose order for last month, works well at priming the immune system to fight coronavirus, phase three trial results suggest.

 

Blood results from volunteers who received the jab had high levels of neutralising antibodies against the pandemic virus.

 

It outperformed the AstraZeneca vaccine on this measure in head-to-head tests.

 

Valneva is seeking regulatory approval for its jab, manufactured in Scotland.

 

It is an inactivated whole virus vaccine, meaning it contains a dead version of coronavirus that cannot cause disease. This is the same way that flu and polio vaccines are made.

 

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