Ganfyd:Current events

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Ganfyd news

Occasional significant medical items which we have a main article about


  • Major re-organisation of the NHS (provisional)


  • Campaigning for the General Election is on a platform of no major re-orgnaisation of the NHS. (Provisional)


November 2014

  • The UK National Audit Office confirms fears that the Government's Better Care Fund implementation is at least 50% too optimistic in terms of release of funding to allow self sustainability. Any bail out when true figures known will be after the next general election.
  • The USA still does not have a Surgeon General with evidence of lack of public health coordination being blamed by some on this, and awaits the impact of a changed political landscape due to election results on its healthcare reforms.

October 2014

  • Successful spinal cord regeneration after sharp transection is obtained in man in a technique using olfactory ensheathing cells.
  • The blame game within WHO and directed by the voluntary sector at other parties for the failure to contain the West African Ebola fever epidemic is well under way. USA public health authorities express confidence that the first case of Ebola diagnosed in the USA in Dallas, Texas in a traveller from Liberia and the first cases contracted in the USA - in two of his medical attendants - will be contained. 3000 US troops are committed to West Africa to assist in managing the continuing epidemic.

September 2014

  • Spanish Flight: The pre-eminence of Paediatric views over parental views and how to react to expressed differences that may have child protection implications received prominent attention. European arrest warrants might impair medical care for children in some circumstances. Prime and Deputy Prime Ministerial attention was attracted. Appropriately. The problem is not entirely simple.

August 2014

  • Preliminary reports emerge of a specific treatment for Ebola virus infection.
  • The Ebola outbreak is declared a global health emergency by the World Health Organisation.

July 2014

  • The West African Ebola fever outbreak is now the largest ever historically.

June 2014

May 2014

  • Statins become front page news in the UK when a review article on their safety widely quoted by anti-statin lobbyists is shown to be flawed
  • The World Health Organisation (WHO) announced worries over the spread and potential further spread of Polio because of, within and from areas of conflict in Pakistan and Syria and in Cameroon. Syria is at war, Pakistan has poorly controlled areas where attacks on medical staff occur, and Cameroon borders on Nigeria where deliberate interruptions of the Polio eradication programme had occurred previously. Inoculation of incoming travellers from areas where Polio has been reported may be necessary.

April 2014

  • The Queensland government wound in their necks a little and returned to the negotiating table they had refused to revisit.
  • In a further advance in understanding human fertility the egg's receptor protein for the sperm's Izumo proteins is characterised, with the suggestion it be renamed Juno.
  • The Ebola Fever outbreak in Guinea is evident in at least one neighbouring country. Deaths rise through 80.
  • Total deaths from MERS exceeds 100, most in Saudi Arabia.

March 2014

An outbreak of Ebola virus in Guinea for the first time killed around 60 people. Samples were sent to France for confirmation of the virus.

The dispute between Queensland doctors and their government over terms and conditions continued.

February 2014

First human death from avian influenza H10N8 reported - it occurred in November 2013 in China.

January 2014

One death from H5N1 influenza is reported in Canada. The patient flew into Edmonton from Beijing. Low level activity continues in China itself as does the more concerning H7N9 outbreak.


October 2013

A new disease is identified. Activated PI3 kinase delta syndrome may account for around a tenth of Primary immunodefficiency.

Further UK 111 service contracts not to be made until April 2015 at earliest (when those not renounced by present providers expire).

August 2013

Extra funding was announced for English NHS Emergency Medicine Departments to relieve the current "winter crisis" accentuated by the opening of the 111 service in several parts of the country.

Medpedia despite the big backing of US medical schools quietly disappeared: . So, that commercial model does not work. The single speciality model for medical wikis failed with anaesthesia. Some good content was lost which is a pity.

July 2013

On the 22nd, a woman was delivered of a baby.

June 2013

May 2013

An Avian flu outbreak in China starts to have increased publicity as its features are characterised.

April 2013

1 April 2013 was the date on which many changes were made to health care in England. These include the abolition of Primary Care Trusts, as mandated in the Health and social care act 2012, and the creation of Clinical Commissioning Groups and the NHS commissioning board. This change was already in March creating problems. For example the Clinical Commissioning Groups discovered it was legally impossible to delegate certain decision making powers to more practically constituted consortium arrangements that pre-existing Primary Care Trusts had done for efficiency reasons. More humorously newly constituted sections of the NHS commissioning board used email distribution lists containing Scottish NHS email addresses to distribute key documents documenting new NHS arrangements for parts of England.

Of particular interest to those working in public health and health protection, many public health practitioners (doctors and others, including the Directors of Public Health) previously working in PCTs were moved into local government authorities (such as district, county, and borough councils); and CsCDC and others working for the Health Protection Agency were, along with others in other sender organisations (including public health observatories, cancer registries, drug and alcohol services...) were moved into a new body, Public Health England.

A natural experiment with measles and MMR immunisation runs in Swansea with at least one death of a young adult with measles.

March 2013

The 290 recommendations of the Francis report resulting from the Stafford enquiry are to be selectively implemented in the Government response.

A new non-medically staffed out of hours phone-answering service using the number 111 is rolled out area by area by the government. It works extremely badly. Interposed between patient and existing urgent care services it results in prolonged delays before calls are returned by a worker with a script, and diversion of some ambulant patients with questions for a GP into Emergency Departments via 999 ambulances. There is little surprise in the medical profession at this.

February 2013

The Stafford enquiry reports that the Trust was effectively managed toward the bad results it obtained. It may be that some of the ways the NHS are managed should change.

January 2013

First randomised controlled trial of stool transfer in Clostridium difficile infection published - it works well[1]


September 2012

A new coronavirus‎‎ may have jumped the species barrier with at least 1 death, just shortly before travellers start arriving in Saudi Arabia for the Hajj.

The end of the Northern Hemisphere holiday season brought news to 230,000 holiday makers who had visited Yosemite National Park of a hantavirus outbreak that killed at least 3 of their co-visitors.

The Rt Hon Andrew Lansley MP is judged and replaced by the Rt Hon Jeremy Hunt MP as UK Secretary of State for Health.

An antenatal pertussis immunisation campaign, to start on 1 October 2012, is announced three days in advance (on 28 September).

August 2012

Medicare continues to be controversial in USA presidential campaign.

May 2012

Unusually, the current UK Secretary of State for Health, The Rt Hon Andrew Lansley MP, finds himself facing industrial action by doctors, following a BMA ballot of the profession. He doesn't regard this as anything to do with him or his policies, on Radio 4. He may not be able to demonstrate that to the judgement of history.

April 2012

Novartis challenges the commissioning of bevacizumab out of license as an alternative option to ranibizumab in wet age related macular degeneration. Case law in the UK relating to NICE technical appraisals and unlicensed drug use will be tested for the first time. Both drugs were originally developed by Genentech (now a subsidiary of Roche) but at the time Novartis obtained the marketing agreement for ranibizumab ouside the USA. Bevacizumab from Roche is considerably cheaper if the preparation marketed for cancer treatment is subdivided aseptically for intra-ocular injection. The resulting political and economic controversy is world wide but this is believed to be the first time an aspect is being legally tested in a jurisdiction.

March 2012

The Health and social care bill 2011‎ passes (becoming the Health and social care act 2012) despite widespread opposition.

January 2012

Clive Peedell and David Wilson run 6 marathons in 6 days in "Bevan's Run", to protest the Health and social care bill 2011‎.

The British Medical Association surveys its members over whether they would be prepared to take industrial action. But, sadly, over their pensions, rather than the Health and social care bill 2011‎.

The Association of Medical Royal Colleges pulls back from the brink of demonstrating that they have integrity and a backbone by not coming out in opposition to the Health and social care bill 2011‎.


US healthcare reform

As of Christmas 2009 it appeared that a more equitable system with mechanisms for cost containment would appear in the USA early in 2010.

more ... 2009, 2010

The Year

2012, Last year, 2010, 2009, 2008


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