Editor in Chief Dr KK Aggarwal, Padma Shri Awardee                                                                               Dated:18 February,2020

WHO warns against novel coronavirus 'blanket measures'

The World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday warned against "blanket measures" over the novel coronavirus outbreak, pointing out the epidemic outside of China was only affecting a "tiny" proportion of the population.

Geneva: The World Health Organization (WHO) on Monday warned against "blanket measures" over the novel coronavirus outbreak, pointing out the epidemic outside of China was only affecting a "tiny" proportion of the population.

WHO also said that -- with a mortality rate of around 2 percent -- COVID-19 was "less deadly" than other coronaviruses such as Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) or Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)....read more

Lock down not the correct method: 9.6% trapped on the ship acquire COVID-19

17th Feb: 70 new cases on board the cruise ship in Japan. Nearly 1 out of 10 passengers and crew (9.6%) have tested positive for the virus so far (355 cases out of 3,711 passengers and crew). The 952-foot cruise ship carries the highest infection rate of the coronavirus anywhere in the world.

China has imposed quarantines across Hubei province, locking down over 56 million people, in order to stop COVID-19 from spreading....read more

COVID-19: China announces drop in new cases for fourth straight day

CMAAO Update 16th February on COVID-19 Summary COVID-19 virus possibly behaves like SARS; causes mild illness in 82%, severe illness in 15%, critical illness in 3% and death in 2% cases ( 15% of admitted serious cases, 71% with comorbidity); affects all ages but predominantly males (56%) with median age 59 years (2-74 years, less in children below 15); with mean incubation period 5.2 days (2-214 days); mean time to symptoms 5 days, mean time to pneumonia 9 days, mean time to death 14 days, 3-4 reproductive number R0 ( flu 1.2 and SARS 2); epidemic doubling time 7.5 days; has origin possibly from bats; spreads via large droplets and predominately from people having lower respiratory infections and hence standard droplet precautions are the answer for the public and close contacts and airborne precautions for healthcare workers dealing with the secretions....read more

Why do we not offer Vanaspati Ghee at the time of cremation or worship?

Vanaspati Ghee is never offered to God at the time of Aarti in the Diya or to the dead body at the time of cremation. Only pure ghee is offered. It is considered a bad omen to offer Vanaspati ghee at the time of the cremation ritual even though the consciousness has left the body. ....read more

How Corona Aware Are You

Health Sutras By Dr K K Aggarwal

Say no to self-medication with antibiotics. Just because you have a cough or cold does not mean that you always need antibiotics.



Healthcare News Monitor

DoP to hold emergency meeting on Feb 19 with drug industry to discuss API supply
Pharmabiz India - Laxmi Yadav

Alarmed by the coronavirus outbreak leading to lock downs in China resulting in stoppage of active pharmaceutical ingredients' (API) supply to India, the Department of Pharmaceuticals (DoP) has called a meeting of representatives of drug industry on February 19 to take stock of excessive dependence of the country on China for APIs and key intermediates supply and plan to develop API parks in the country. In 2018-19, India imported bulk drugs and intermediates worth US$ 2.4 billion from China. In 2017-18 the import of bulk drugs and intermediates from China to India stood at US$ 2,055.94 million. At present, domestic drug makers have an inventory for a couple of months and pharmaceutical companies in Chinese regions mildly affected by coronavirus have resumed operation, except Wuhan region, the epicenter of coronavirus outbreak. The panic triggered by the spread of the coronavirus and extended shutdown in China have led to a steep rise in prices of several critical APIs in the country since January. The prices of nimesulide, paracetamol, azithromycin, chloramphenicol, clav avicel, amoxycillin, tinidazole, ornidazole, ciprofloxacin, dexamethasone sodium, clav syloid, diclofenac sodium etc have gone up by 167%, 72%, 44%, 17%, 36%, 48%, 61%, 73%, 40%, 45%, 38%, 28% respectively. Upset with excessive rise in prices of APIs, a manufacturer on condition of anonymity said the DoP should take action against traders charging margin more than 15 per cent for APIs.

Pharmabiz India – Shardul Nautiyal

The pharmaceutical industry has demanded to the Food Safety Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) to specify the tolerable upper limit for each type of vitamin B12 similar to what has been permitted in drug at 2000 micro gram (mcg) methylcobalamin intramuscular. As per the clinical studies conducted, the methylcobalamin is very safe at 2000 micro gram (mcg) intramuscular. Industry experts have contested that that when gazette notification is talking about Vitamin B12, it refers to which type of vitamin B12 as all four vitamin B12 like methylcobalamin, cyanocobalamin, hydroxycobalamin and adenocylcobalamin are different and have different level of absorption in the body therefore recommended dietary allowance (RDA) and upper limit for each type of B12 must be different. Pharmaceutical industry, however, is not satisfied with the RDA value defined for vitamin B12 in particular. “If I presume that you are talking about methylcobalamin and the given RDA value is 1 mcg which is at very lower side, the upper limit should be at least 500 mcg. FSSAI has not identified any tolerable upper limit for methylcobalamin. Industry has therefore written to the FSSAI to specify the tolerable upper limit for each type of methylcobalamin,” explains leading pharma consultant Dr Sanjay Agrawal. Experts have been raising concern over lack of clarity in FSSAI RDA values for Vitamin- B12 in neurological disorders based on Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) data. This according to them lacks scientific evidence and rationale.

Coronavirus: Delhi govt hospital suspends biometric attendance
Mint- PTI

A Delhi government hospital has suspended biometric attendance for its employees as a "precautionary measure" after many of them complained of "psychological unease" over the coronavirus scare, a senior official said on Monday. The order to suspend biometric attendance at Maharishi Valmiki Hospital was issued recently, after many employees "expressed concern" over its usage, he said. The attendance is now being marked manually till further order, the official said, adding, the measure has been taken to offer "psychological ease" to employees as they are aware about coronavirus and how it spreads.

Medical Dialogues- Garima

Given the fact that doctors are rampantly accused of medical negligence and charged under IPC 304 A without proper scrutiny into the allegations made against them, the Supreme Court has made a landmark observation holding that the medical professionals should not be dragged into criminal proceedings unless negligence of a high order is shown. The bench made this observation based on the petition filed by a doctor of Haryana based hospital who was accused of medical negligence after the death of the patient following a C Section. The case concerned a pregnant patient who was admitted to the hospital for delivery in November 1998. She was advised caesarean by the doctor and underwent the same. After the birth of the newborn, the doctors felt that blood was required to be given to the patient. The donors were her husband and her brother. A day post-transfusion, the patient expired. Thereafter, citing medical negligence filed an FIR with the police alleging that the doctor did not attend to the patient after transfusion which resulted in her death. Then, the trial court was moved with the case which on the application of the accused discharged the doctor and gave relief to the doctor relying upon the judgment of the Supreme Court in Jacob Mathew vs. State of Punjab & Anr. (2005) 6 SCC 1 case in which the bench had held that in criminal law medical professionals are placed on a pedestal different from ordinary mortals.