Editor in Chief Dr KK Aggarwal, Padma Shri Awardee                                                                                  Dated:30 October,2019

World Medical Association reaffirms opposition to euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide

The World Medical Association has reaffirmed its long-standing policy of opposition to euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide. After an intensive process of consultation with physicians and non physicians around the world, the WMA at its annual Assembly in Tbilisi, Georgia, adopted a revised Declaration on Euthanasia and Physician-Assisted Suicide.

This states: ‘The WMA reiterates its strong commitment to the principles of medical ethics and that utmost respect has to be maintained for human life. Therefore, the WMA is firmly opposed to euthanasia and physician-assisted suicide.’ It adds: ‘No physician should be forced to participate in euthanasia or assisted suicide, nor should any physician be obliged to make referral decisions to this end.’

The Declaration says: ‘Separately, the physician who respects the basic right of the patient to decline medical treatment does not act unethically in forgoing or withholding unwanted care, even if respecting such a wish results in the death of the patient.’

The revised Declaration defines euthanasia as ‘a physician deliberately administering a lethal substance or carrying out an intervention to cause the death of a patient with decision-making capacity at the patient’s own voluntary request.’ It says that physician-assisted suicide ‘refers to cases in which, at the voluntary request of a patient with decision-making capacity, a physician deliberately enables a patient to end his or her own life by prescribing or providing medical substances with the intent to bring about death.’

WMA Chair Dr. Frank Ulrich Montgomery said: ‘Having held consultative conferences involving every continent in the world, we believe that this revised wording is in accord with the views of most physicians worldwide.’

A Village to Call My Own

Reproduced from: India Legal, http://www.indialegallive.com/viewpoint/a-village-to-call-my-own-74367; published October 26, 2019

The Medical Council of India has recommended that PG medical students must serve three months in a district hospital before they get their degrees. This is a welcome move

There are four types of patients. The first are ignorant patients who form the majority and belong to rural India or the rural urban belt in cities and metros. They depend totally on doctors for treatment and decisions. They may or may not have access to Google but all of them need affordable healthcare. The second are informed patients who read Google and visit the doctor with half-baked knowledge and information. The third and fourth group are the empowered and enlightened patients, respectively, who want to share decision-making with their doctors. These are the patients who will go for the best services, hospitals and doctors. ....read more

Regularly screen Parkinson disease patients for visual impairment
Visual symptoms are signi?cantly more common in patients with Parkinson disease (PD), which reduce quality of life. But they are under-recognized and under-treated, suggests a new study published in the European Journal of Neurology.

Ocular surface dryness, Impaired contrast sensitivity or color discrimination, convergence insu?ciency resulting in blurry or double vision with near viewing are some of the visual problems that are common in patients with PD.

The study is the largest to date of cross-sectional analysis of visual symptoms in these patients and involved 115, 240 older adults (=50 years), including 1482 with PD in the Survey of Health, Ageing and Retirement in Europe (SHARE), a multinational population-based health survey of adults living in one of 27 European countries and Israel. ....read more

Soul does not leave the body immediately after the death
According to Prashna Upanishad, at the time of death, the Prana Vayu (life force and respiration) merges with Udana Vayu (brain stem reflexes) and leaves the body. But this does not happen immediately after clinical death, which is defined as stoppage of heart and respiration. Medically the term used for clinically dead patients is sudden cardiac arrest. ....read more

Healthcare News Monitor

ET Healthworld- TNN

Palanpur: A team from the World Health Organisation (WHO) has been camping in Banakantha district since past couple of days after at least 10 suspected deaths due to diphtheria were recorded in the district this month. According to chief district health officer Manish Fancy, four suspected diphtheria patients are in critical condition and under treatment at civil hospital in Ahmedabad. Also, at least 35 children are under observation in seven talukas of Banaskantha district. “Two suspected diphtheria patients, both children in age group of 6-10 years, died on Wednesday— one in Ahmedabad civil hospital and another in Palanpur civil hospital,” Fancy told TOI. “A team of WHO has been camping in the district and over 200 teams for state health department are conducting door-to-door survey in affected talukas,” added Fancy. “We are awaiting reports from National Institute of Virology (NIC) Pune to ascertain the cause of deaths of the suspected diphtheria cases,” said Fancy adding that they were also getting reports from Kerala where the diphtheria outbreak in 2016-17 had claimed several lives.

ET Healthworld- TNN

NEW DELHI: Delhi government has issued notice for hiring of doctors to run its 300 mohalla clinics. Officials said the government is going to pay the doctors Rs 40 per patient with a guarantee of 75 patients daily. Recently, the government inaugurated 100 new mohalla clinics across the state, taking the total number of such clinics to 301. "Our aim is to take the number of clinics to 500 in the next two to three months," a government official said. He added that the slow pace of work for starting new clinics - the government had promised 1,000 clinics within the first year of Aam Aadmi Party coming to power - was mainly due to lack of land. "The land owning agencies weren't very forthcoming to provide space. Therefore, we have started to rent spaces for the clinics. Some people have also offered their premises for opening the primary health centres free of cost," the official said. They added there is no shortage of manpower and the government is getting good response to its calls for medical professionals needed to run the clinics.

ET Healthworld- PTI

New Delhi: The Central Public Works Department has requested the Union Health Ministry to engage it in developing new AIIMS in various parts of the country. In a letter to Union Health and Family Welfare Minister Harsh Vardhan, CPWD Director General Prabhakar Singh said in the recent past, the agency had undergone "radical reforms" in its functioning. Singh said the CPWD had recently executed important health infrastructure projects such as the AIIMS in Jammu and Srinagar, super-speciality hospitals at Bhagalpur and Patna and a super-speciality block at RML Hospital in New Delhi. "It is understood that your ministry has decided to develop new AIIMS in Haryana, Bihar-ll, Karnataka, Kerala, Goa, Tripura, Sikkim and Madurai. We in the CPWD would feel privileged to be associated with the development of these AIIMS complexes," the DG said. In the letter, he said the department with its long experience and well-established construction practices of adherence to the codal formalities and specifications would execute the work in a hassle-free manner. "I therefore request your good self, to entrust above works of AIIMS to the CPWD and accord administrative approval and estimate sanction to the CPWD, so as to enable us to commence the work at the earliest," Singh added.

ET Healthworld- ANI

In a bid to create awareness and sensitise the people of Western Uttar Pradesh about corneal infections and eye donation, the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS) for the first time has started a pilot project whereby it will cover six districts in the region. The six districts are Meerut, Bulandshahr, Aligarh, Ghaziabad, Saharanpur and Muzaffarpur. As many as 1.80 crore people will be tested on the problems related to eye diseases. The study has been funded by the DST for a period of three years. According to the doctors, the case of eye donation is very less in the region. Dr Rajesh Sinha, professor of ophthalmology at AIIMS and principal investigator of the study told ANI: "The flare of eye infection is high among the population of Western Uttar Pradesh. People live in poor hygiene and sanitation. Also, they are not aware of the eye donation programme."