Editor in Chief Dr KK Aggarwal, Padma Shri Awardee                                                                          Dated:04 October,2019

Binge drinking by would-be parents is a high risk and dangerous behaviour

(ESC, Oct. 3, 2019): Aspiring parents should both avoid drinking alcohol prior to conception to protect against congenital heart defects, according to a new research published in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology. Drinking alcohol three months before pregnancy (and during the first trimester for mothers) was associated with a 44% raised risk of congenital heart disease for fathers and 16% for mothers, compared to not drinking. Binge drinking, defined as 5 or more drinks per sitting, was related to a 52% higher likelihood of these birth defects for men and 16% for women.

‘Binge drinking by would-be parents is a high risk and dangerous behaviour that not only may increase the chance of their baby being born with a heart defect, but also greatly damages their own health,’ said study author Dr Jiabi Qin, of Xiangya School of Public Health, Central South University, Changsha, China. The results suggest that when couples are trying for a baby, men should not consume alcohol for at least six months before fertilisation while women should stop alcohol one year before and avoid it while pregnant.

Aao Plog Karein: Plogging for a Fit & Clean India
Heart Care Foundation of India, CMAAO, Indian Medical Association (IMA) and Delhi Medical Association (DMA) with the help of many other NGOs organised “Fit India Plog 2 kms” on 2nd October 2019.

More than 1000 plogging activities were done across the country, with more than 200 such activities in Delhi alone.

The program was a part of Fit India Plog Run inaugurated by Shri Kiren Rijiju at Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium on 2nd October.

From our side, the plog was represented by noted Bollywood singer Shibani Kashyap, noted Kavi Ashok Chakradhar, Dr Girish Tyagi President DMA and Padma Awardee doctors KK Sethi, Rajesh Grover, AK Grover and TS Kler, besides hundreds of doctors and HCFI family members. ....read more

Emerging parasitic disease mimics the symptoms of visceral leishmaniasis in people
(Excerpts from NIH): A new study published in Emerging Infectious Diseases suggests that transmission of a protozoan parasite from insects may also cause leishmaniasis-like symptoms in people. The parasite, however, does not respond to treatment with standard leishmaniasis drugs. The research was conducted by scientists at the Federal Universities of Sergipe and São Carlos, the University of São Paulo, and the Oswaldo Cruz Foundation, all in Brazil, along with investigators at the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases (NIAID), part of the U.S. National Institutes of Health. ....read more

The Main Principle of Knowing the Truth
The main figure in the Upanishads is sage Yajnavalkya, known as one of the greatest philosophers. Most of the great teachings of later Hindu or Buddhist philosophy are derived from him. He taught the great doctrine of neti-neti, the view that truth can be found only through the negation of all thoughts about it.

Brhadaranyaka Upanishad is the oldest and the most important of all the Upanishads. Its name actually means the great forest-book. ....read more

Healthcare News Monitor

Mass awareness programmes to kick off fight against plastic
ET Bureau

NEW DELHI: The Centre plans to battle single-use plastic in the first phase through mass awareness programmes and strong nudges to local bodies across states to collect and correctly dispose such waste rather than bring in a blanket ban. Phase two will involve bringing in a new framework for Extended Producer Responsibility to ensure plastic producers also work towards its collection and disposal after consumption. This phase will also look at ways to find alternatives to multi layered packaging which is heavily used by courier services. Until then, this plastic will not be phased out, the Centre has assured states in a communication on September 6. The idea is to cut back single-use plastic significantly by 2021-2022. Phase 1 of the cut single-use plastic movement, however, has begun with a countrywide awareness mission. The environment ministry has assessed that more than the use of plastic it is the littered plastic waste that goes uncollected which poses a greater environmental hazard. In two advisories issued to state governments on September 6 and 11, the environment ministry has asked states to focus especially on collection of plastic waste and its management.

Mumbai: Banned oxytocin seized in Andheri and Kalyan
Daily News & Analysis

In one of the rare seizures of banned drugs in the city, officers of unit 10 of the Mumbai crime branch have seized 1,000 bottles of a chemical drug named ‘Oxytocin’ worth Rs 60,000 and have also arrested two men who were allegedly possessing and supplying the said drug at a stable in Andheri. The accused duo have been identified as Najeeb Khotal (37) and Anis Khande (44) who are residents of Kalyan, said the police. Subsequently, the crime branch sleuths have also raided a Kalyan based godown and have seized close to 500 litres of the same drug and the owner of the godown identified as Masi Khot (37) has been arrested. The police expect more such seizures in due course of time as and when the investigation proceeds ahead. According to crime branch sources, Oxytocin which is a banned drug is used illegally in dairy farms and cowsheds so that lactating cows and buffaloes give milk in a greater quantity which in turn proves profitable for selling milk and other dairy products. However, the drug also leaves a negative impact on the health of animals and after consuming such dairy products, humans are also prone to fall ill.

Ahmedabad: Patient death - SVP Hospital blamed, authorities deny
Daily New & Analysis

The Sardar Vallabhbhai Patel Institute of Medical Sciences and Research, popularly known as SVP Hospital, is yet again in controversy after a video went viral on social media whereby it has been alleged that an elderly patient died in the hospital after doctors refused to treat him for not furnishing the required deposit. In the video, the relatives of the patient are seen shouting inside the hospital and trying to shoot a video of the concerned doctor who refused treatment. The security personnel are seen restraining them from shooting any video and trying to calm the agitated relatives. Notably, the patient was brought to hospital in a serious condition and the relatives of the patient have alleged that he was refused treatment in the hospital, resulting in his death.

Less than 50 per cent hospitals active under PMJAY: Study
The New Indian Express- Sumi Sukanya dutta

NEW DELHI: A recent government survey to assess the progress made under the flagship Pradhan Mantri Jan Aarogya Yojana has revealed that less than 50 per cent of the hospitals that have been empanelled for the scheme has been “active”. The finding indicates a far lesser utilization of the programme than expected and also suggest that many beneficiaries might be denied treatment under the scheme. So far around 18,236 hospitals — a little over half of which are in the private sector — have been empanelled under the scheme to ensure cashless secondary and tertiary care hospitalisation. The data, shared during a closed-door meeting on the two-day session, Aarogya Manthan, organised by the National Health Authority — which has formed to implement the scheme — showed that only 46 per cent hospitals sought four or more pre-authorisation or admitted at least four patients in four weeks in September.

Maharashtra DHS stops Ranitidine use in govt hospitals until further notice
The Indian Express

Days after the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) issued a warning over the presence of low levels of carcinogenic impurity in the drug called Ranitidine, the state Directorate of Health Services (DHS) issued a circular to immediately stop the use of the acidity medication in government hospitals. Ranitidine is prescribed for stomach ulcers and gastric problems such as acidity. The Schedule H drug is available in the form of injection and oral tablet. In India, companies like Dr Reddy’s Lab, SMS Lifesciences, Saraca Laboratories produce active pharmaceutical ingredient (API) to produce Ranitidine. Two major API manufacturers of Ranitidine in India are Saraca Laboratories and Orchid Pharma Pvt Ltd. On September 13, the US FDA issued a notification stating that Ranitidine contained low levels of nitrosamine impurity called N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA), which is cancerous. The Drug Controller General Of India (DCGI) issued a notice to state FDAs to test the product.