Editor in Chief Dr KK Aggarwal, Padma Shri Awardee                                                                                Dated:1 November,2019

Call to Action to eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis by 2021

“Planning, commitment, vision, societal involvement and past experiences can help us achieve our goal of eliminating Lymphatic Filariasis from the country by 2021” said Dr. Harsh Vardhan, Union Minister for Health & Family Welfare as he inaugurated the day long National Symposium on the theme ‘United to Eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis’.

Dr. Harsh Vardhan added “I would like to draw your attention toNeglected Tropical DiseasesNTDs), which are a group of debilitating infectious diseases that impact over 1.5 billion people globally and hold back the poorest communities from reaching their full potential. India is committed to eliminate two of these NTDs - Lymphatic Filariasis (Hathipaon) and Visceral Leishmaniases (Kala-Azar) that put the future of our children at high risk.”“India’s achievements so far have been significant, and this is an opportune time for us to consolidate the successes and finish the job of achieving LF elimination by 2021”, Union Health Minister stated.

As Dr. Harsh Vardhan signed the‘Call to Action to eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis by 2021’ he said “While we have taken significant steps to ensure more people are not affected by these NTDs, what we need now is a common vision driven towards achieving the elimination of Lymphatic Filariasis. This however, will only be possible if we foster greater collaboration and commitment by all stakeholders including global public health experts, national & state representatives, partners & donors”. Ms. Preeti Sudan, Secretary, Ministry of Health & Family Welfare and other delegates also signed the Call to Action to eliminate Lymphatic Filariasis by 2021.

An open letter to Mr Sourav Ganguly: Air quality should also be considered when determining suitable playing conditions


Mr Sourav Ganguly
President, Board of Cricket Control of India

Dear Sourav Ji

Delhi is hosting the first T20 international cricket match between India and Bangladesh scheduled to be played at Arun Jaitley Stadium on 3rd November, 2019.

However, the air quality in the national capital has deteriorated, especially after Diwali. Delhi has been enveloped in a thick layer of smog leading to a fall in air quality and visibility. Since the last few days, the Air Quality Index (AQI) in most parts of Delhi continues to be in the 'severe' to 'very poor' category with pollution levels being several times higher than the permissible limits. The AQI has crossed the 400 mark in several places in Delhi. ....read more

NIH study finds high-salt diet precipitates pathogenic tau and cognitive impairment
Here is another reason to reduce intake of salt.

High levels of dietary salt can activate a pathway in the brain to cause cognitive impairment, according to a new study. The paper, which was published in Nature, shows that this effect is not due to a loss in blood flow to the brain as originally thought, but rather to clumps of a protein linked to several forms of dementia in humans. The research was funded by the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), part of the National Institutes of Health. ....read more

Vedic Fasting
Fasting and starvation are two different terms commonly confused with each other.

Starvation means not eating or drinking altogether, while fasting means control and restrain of five sensory and five motor senses. ....read more

Healthcare News Monitor

Draft bill proposes up to Rs 1cr fine for unsafe medical devices
ET Healthworld/TNN-Sushmi Dey

NEW DELHI: Medical device makers and importers can face penalty of up to Rs 1 crore if products sold in India are found to be unsafe or if they fail to protect personal health information of patients, according to the draft bill proposed by NITI Aayog. The draft Medical Devices (Safety, Effectiveness and Innovation) Bill, 2019– circulated within ministries by NITI Aayog – also proposes to create a National Register of Medical Devices, a unique identification number (UID) to be displayed on the label of a product in a prescribed format, provisions for compensation for harm or injury and a separate regulator or Medical Device Administration to oversee the sector.

India's life expectancy rises; diabetes, hypertension rate high: Report
ET Healthworld-IANS

New Delhi: Life expectancy in India has increased from 49.7 years in 1970-75 to 68.7 years in 2012-16, as per the National Health Profile 2019 released on Wednesday. For the same period, the life expectancy for females is 70.2 years and 67.4 years for males. For comparison, in last year's survey, the life expectancy had increased from 49.7 years in 1970-75 to 68.3 years in 2011-15. For the same period, the life expectancy for females is 70 years and 66.9 years for males. So there has been an increase in life expectancy in general, and also for males. On the non-communicable diseases, the survey notes that out of 6.51 crore patients who attended NCD clinics, 4.75 per cent people are diagnosed with diabetes, 6.19 per cent are diagnosed with hypertension, 0.30 per cent are diagnosed with cardiovascular diseases, 0.10 per cent are diagnosed with stroke and 0.26 per cent are diagnosed with common cancers. As per the survey, the highest population density of 11,320 people per square kilometre was reported by the NCT of Delhi whereas Arunachal Pradesh has reported the lowest population density of 17.

Govt considers single US FDA-like regulator for food, drugs and medical devices
The Times of India - Sushmi Dey

The government is mulling a single overarching watchdog - similar to US Food and Drug Administration (US FDA) - to oversee functioning of three regulators of food, drugs and medical devices. The move is aimed at streamlining regulatory structure while ensuring transparency, effective monitoring as well as ease of doing business. At present, both medicines and medical devices are regulated by the Central Drugs Standard Control Organisation (CDSCO), whereas food along with nutraceuticals are monitored by the Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI). Both CDSCO and FSSAI heads report to a joint secretary in the health ministry. Government think-tank NITI Aayog has floated a proposal suggesting a separate third vertical for regulating medical devices similar to CDSCO and FSSAI. It has also recommended that instead of reporting to a JS, all the three verticals can be supervised by FDA India head who will be an IAS officer of the rank of additional secretary in the health ministry, official sources said. “NITI Aayog’s suggestion has found favour with the PMO and is likely to be implemented soon,” a senior official told TOI.

National Health Profile 2019: Health Minister Harsh Vardhan releases the 14th edition of NHP
Jagran Josh - Sangeeta Nair

Union Health Minister Harsh Vardhan released the 14th edition of the National Health Profile 2019 on October 30, 2019. The Health Minister also released the digital version of the book. The National Health Profile is prepared by the Central Bureau of Health Intelligence (CBHI). It provides a comprehensive framework on the socio-economic health status and the status of demographic, health finance, health infrastructure and health of human resources in the country. The National Health Profile was first published in 2005. Ever since the profile has been released every year and this year, is its 14th edition.

Health ministry to develop action plan to monitor misleading advertisements of Ayush drugs
Pharmabiz India - Shardul Nautiyal

The Union health ministry is planning to devise an action plan for surveillance of misleading advertisements of Ayush drugs. This according to the plan can be implemented with the setting up of a dedicated centre for monitoring safety of Ayush products in the country. Meanwhile, Indian Pharmacopoeia Commission (IPC), Ghaziabad which is the National Coordination Centre (NCC) for Pharmacovigilance Programme of India (PvPI) has been training Ayush coordinators of pharmacovigilance centres of ayurveda, siddha, unani and homoeopathy in collaboration with All India Institute of Ayurveda (AIIA), New Delhi covering subjects like concept of Pharmacovigilance in Ayurveda, Siddha, Unani and Homoeopathy (ASU and H) drugs, methods used in pharmacovigilance and building-up of an effective pharmacovigilance system for Ayush products. This comes at a time when Union Ayush Ministry has come up with stringent regulatory guidelines to prevent misleading and inappropriate advertisements of Ayurveda, Siddha and Unani (ASU) medications in the country. On December 21, 2018, the Central Government also introduced the eleventh amendment of Drug and Cosmetic (D&C) Rule, 2018, which addresses 'Prohibition of advertisements of Ayurveda, Siddha or Unani drugs' in public interest.