Month: January 2018

Calls for people to stop using – or reduce the use of – antibiotics

antibiotic concerns

The ‘Keep Antibiotics Working’ campaign is urging patients not to ask their GP or doctor for antibiotics in a bid to tackle the reported growing resistance to the medicine.

When we have an infection, antibiotic treatments can help to kill the bacteria. However, around 5,000 people┬áreportedly die each year in England because antibiotics don’t work for some infections because they’ve grown a resistance to the medicine.

The campaign was launched by Public Health England in recognition that overuse of antibiotics – and other factors – has helped infections strengthen their resistance to the medicines.
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Medical company guilty of distributing misbranded cancer drug for 13 years

company guilty of misbranding cancer drug

AmerisourceBergen Specialty Group admitted to a court that its subsidiary company, Medical Initiatives Inc (MII), illegally distributed misbranded a cancer drug for 13 years.

They were reportedly shipping the drugs from a facility that wasn’t registered with regulators, and following the conviction, the company has been ordered to pay almost £200m in fines.

The guilty company was found to have been working outside of regulatory review and scrutiny as its facility was never registered with regulators as either as a manufacturer or a re-packager.
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Serious side-effect warnings may be getting diluted on medication labels

medication

Pharmaceuticals have a responsibility to tell doctors and users about any side-effects a drug might have.

But what if the list contains over 20 or 30 potential side-effects?

Even when just taking a paracetamol tablet we may be faced with a long list of potential reactions and potential problems of varying degrees. Are pharmaceutical companies doing this to cover their backs, or are they doing it to confuse the user by downplaying the risks?

Some are suggesting the latter…
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U.S. to take steps to tackle the opioid crisis – will U.K. follow suit on medication problems?

opioid drug deaths

The U.S. has reportedly acknowledged the problem of quadrupling opioid-related deaths, as well as the fact they now account for the majority of fatal overdoses. It’s been declared as a national public health emergency.

Various federal institutions are to be involved in taking measures to combat the problem. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will require pharmaceutical drug companies that make prescription opioids to “provide more training to prescriber’s”.

As Britain faces its own battles with the overuse of prescription medication – including opioids – will we see similar action here?
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NHS pushed into upgrading its monitoring system following avoidable death

patient observations

A 42-year-old woman was admitted to East Sussex Healthcare NHS Trust hospital on a Friday evening with a liver abscess and sepsis. Her condition rapidly deteriorated over the weekend and she tragically died two days later of multiple organ failure.

This death was confirmed to have been entirely preventable.

This incident was apparently the last straw for the Trust’s critical-care lead, Dr Kate Murray. Prior to this incident, Murray was unhappy with an abundance of problems with how the hospital take patient observations, and as a result of the incident, she sought to do something about it.
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