Opinion

A new diagnostic test on cards for prostate cancer

A new diagnostic test on cards for prostate cancer

By : Dr. Shikha T. Malik

Prostate cancer is the second most frequently diagnosed cancer in men worldwide. Now a group of Indian scientists have identified a sensitive and specific diagnostic marker for prostate cancer that may differentiate between cancerous and non-cancerous prostate enlargement. That may help patients and their doctors make difficult treatment decisions.

Gujarat far behind on health indices

Gujarat far behind on health indices

By : OOMMEN C. KURIAN

Amid the election fanfare, it is significant to know how Gujarat has performed on health indicators. The impact of high economic growth on health and nutrition outcomes in Gujarat has been mixed. Full immunisation coverage has improved to 50.4% in NFHS-4 but Gujarat is still close to the bottom among Indian states. However, it has performed well in one area which is safe birth deliveries.

Healthy habits can ease genetic heart disease risk

Healthy habits can ease genetic heart disease risk

By : Dinesh C Sharma

Unhealthy lifestyle can easily trigger diabetes and heart disease among people who are genetically predisposed to them. A new study has found that people who are even genetically more prone to get diabetes and heart diseases can reduce their risk with lifestyle modification. Healthy food and physical activity can reduce the risk for  people who are genetically predisposed to them.

Air pollution linked to heart diseases

 Air pollution linked to heart diseases

By : Health Analytics India

Medical researchers are concerned about pollution particles smaller than 2.5 microns which have the potential to evade the lungs' protective filter system and end up deep in the body. By accumulating in vulnerable areas of body, air pollution particles could trigger cardiovascular risks and worsen heart diseases. However, the disease process remains uncertain and studying the links between air pollution and health is difficult.

Linked Data Solutions in Healthcare

Linked Data Solutions in Healthcare

By : Amrapali Zaveri

This is an exciting time for healthcare data. More and more countries are improving ​collection of ​health data. ​But often this data is stored in ​silos, ​making it ​practically ​useless. ​When routinely collected data is connected and linked in a machine-friendly ​manner ​that makes data useful in ways we never imagined before. It provides actionable insights and has a huge potential to transform healthcare.

Health of India: CSE Report

Health of India: CSE Report

By : Nabeela Khan Inayati

A new report by a leading Indian think tank, Centre for Science and Environment says health of millions of Indians is threatened by preventable diseases. Pollution and change in lifestyle are risk factors. Worse, the report points out that the key data on disease burden is missing. While data on NCDs was calculated a decade ago, data related to cancer covers only 10% of the population. 

Can technology be a solution for health issues

Can technology be a solution for health issues

By : Dr. T V Venkateswaran and Jyoti Singh

Preventing heart attacks, measuring soil moisture and detecting explosives may sound disjointed, random problems, but scientists say it is possible to address them using the same concept or technology platform. Practical availibility of technology is a solution to such issues and researchers at Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, have achieved this.

A program that turns doctors into muckrakers

A program that turns doctors into muckrakers

By : Robert Steiner

The University of Toronto has now trained 17 doctors and health professionals along with 58 other specialists to work as journalists, some of whom have quickly become award-winning reporters. And the doctors who come want to do more than service journalism; they want to investigate problems that most reporters miss.

Health policy is vital to deal with air pollution

Health policy is vital to deal with air pollution

By : Dr. Karan Thakur

Delhi's air pollution has triggered a health crisis and national debate about air pollution. Despite the threat air pollution has posed to the health of India over the past decade, why has so little been done on the health policy front to tackle this looming threat?  More importantly, what are the immediate policy measures we must undertake?

One health policy may not work for all Indian states

One health policy may not work for all Indian states

By : Dinesh C. Sharma

Scientists have identified 333 disease conditions and 84 risk factors for all the states in India and this is the first time that burden of disease has been studied at state-level. This has huge implications for policy makers because it means that one health policy and uniform health schemes may not be workable for all the states.


Air pollution kills, but where is the data?

Air pollution kills, but where is the data?

By : Nabeela Khan Inayati

How many people die in India due to air pollution? Nobody knows! Neither the central government nor the state governments collect data regarding number of people suffering due to exposure to polluted air and deaths occurred. While there is so much debate about air pollution in the country. No official data is available.

Consuming fruits,veggies, dals cuts risk of death

Consuming fruits,veggies, dals cuts risk of death

By : Bhavya Khullar

The Lancet has found that people who consume around 375 to 500 grams of fruits, vegetables, and dal per day are at a reduced risk of death. The research was done in 18 countries with 135,335 participants aged 35 to 70 years. Healthy individuals with no reported diseases and complications were enrolled for the study. 

How to save yourself from toxic air

How to save yourself from toxic air

By : Health Analytics India

Reducing the health effects from urban outdoor air pollution is largely beyond the control of individuals. But how can people protect themseleves when there is an air pollution alert, answers World Health Organisation. WHO has issued a set of guidelines and tips that can protect people from the adverse affects of Delhi's toxic air. 

How India can save $1 billion and 90,000 children each year: report

How India can save $1 billion and 90,000 children each year: report

By : Johns Hopkins Report 2017

The Pneumonia & Diarrhea Progress Report, 2017 evaluates the annual progress made in prevention and control of pneumonia and diarrhea by scoring the top 15 highest burden countries. The report highlights that India has improved the most in prevention and control of pneumonia and diarrhoea.

Confronting breast cancer is crucial to India’s economic development

Confronting breast cancer is crucial to India’s economic development

By : Judith Fletcher Brown

Breast cancer is currently the most common cancer detected in Indian women and is an epidemic. India’s development brings with it new health risks for women without building the infrastructure to prevent and detect it. But boosting breast cancer awareness and encouraging early detection could play a significant role in reducing it. 

How India can help eliminate neglected diseases

How India can help eliminate neglected diseases

By : Dr. Suman Rijal

Neglected tropical diseases are fighting for attention despite the fact, they are major chronic infections that affect the world’s poorest. In an interview to Health Analytics India, Dr Suman Rijal, Director of DNDi (India) talks about challenges of eliminating the diseases, role of data and why there is less investments in the area of neglected tropical diseases.

India’s ambitious new plan to conquer TB needs cash and commitment

India’s ambitious new plan to conquer TB needs cash and commitment

By : Madhu Pai

Tuberculosis (TB) is one of many diseases that affect Indians, and India is clearly under-performing on several key health indicators, as shown by a recent report. India is at the epicentre of this epidemic, with half a million TB deaths annually. An overall greater investment in healthcare and political commitment is much needed to end TB epidemic. 

Child mortality dips, one million Indian children saved

Child mortality dips, one million Indian children saved

By : The Lancet Report

India has avoided about one million deaths of under five children since 2005, owing to significant reductions in mortality from pneumonia, diarrhoea, neonatal infections, birth asphyxia, trauma, measles and tetanus, according to a new study by Lancet. The conditions prioritised under the National Health Mission saw the maximum decline.

Swiss bend rules to provide patients with affordable treatment

Swiss bend rules to provide patients with affordable treatment

By : Anand Chandrasekhar

For a rich country that is a global hub for pharma companies, Switzerland is going to extraordinary lengths to avoid Hepatitis C patients having to pay for pricey drugs. It affects between 50,000 to 80,000 Swiss residents. But only those suffering from a very severe form have the drug needed for treatment covered by their mandatory health insurance.

How reforming Medical Council of India will help eliminate corruption

How reforming Medical Council of India will help eliminate corruption

By : Brookings India Report

National Medical Commission seeks to replace Medical Council of India with a promise to create world-class medical education system. Recently, Brookings India published an impact series of effectiveness and recommendations to be considered for revamping medical education. Here is a short excerpt of major recommendations from  the report.

 

Better data and health worker training may cut stillbirths: study

Better data and health worker training may cut stillbirths: study

By : Bhavya Khullar

Around 26 lakh stillbirths occurr globally every year, India accounts for the largest proportion with 5.9 lakh cases.A major stumbling block is lack of data on stillbirth in India. A new study by PHFI aims to bridge the gap with a focus on getting insights into possible risk factors and ground level changes required to design and implement intervention policies.

Price Controls and Make in India needs convergence

Price Controls and Make in India needs convergence

By : Dr. Karan Thakur

Providing access to affordable and quality healthcare is government's responsibility. Some 1 billion people across the world lack access to basic healthcare, the main reason remains inability to afford healthcare. Indian government's move to control prices of medical devices is a commendable step and work in progress to tackle healthcare challenges. 

TB’s stronghold in India: Grave concern for the rest of the world

TB’s stronghold in India: Grave concern for the rest of the world

By : Jay Desai

A study by Lancet estimated that the percentage of multidrug-resistant TB among all cases in India is set to increase to more than 12% in India by 2040. However, India can put an end to its TB ordeal. Sustained intervention, substantial allocation of funds and better implementation of guidelines by the government are needed. 

Neuroscientist who uses art to communicate science

Neuroscientist who uses art to communicate science

By : Dr. Leslee lazar

What does neuroscience have to do with graphic designing? Stereotype holds that scientists and designers are vastly different thinkers. A neuroscientist and graphic designer Dr Leslee Lazar is bridging art and science gap to create visual representations of scientific knowledge.

Public healthcare:​ Lessons from the Gorakhpur tragedy​​

Public healthcare:​  Lessons from the Gorakhpur tragedy​​

By : Nabeela Khan Inayati

Negligence kills. That is what happened in Gorakhpur where terrible tragedy cruelly crushed lives of so many innocent children because of lack of timely healthcare intervention. This will be remembered as one of the worst tragedies in India’s public healthcare. What are the lessons from Gorakhpur?




Medical Research: Probiotic can prevent infections in infants

Medical Research: Probiotic can prevent infections in infants

By : Dinesh C Sharma

A quarter of the world's infant deaths happen in India, therefore infant mortality is still a major cause of concern. Reasons of such deaths are infections and diarrhea. A group of Indian and American scientists have found that a bulk of these deaths can be prevented with an inexpensive probiotic-based preventive therapy.

Indian scientists resurrect century old malaria drug

Indian scientists resurrect century old malaria drug

By : Jyoti Singh

Malaria is life threatening mosquito borne disease. With time, malaria parasite becomes resistant to the available drug. This is a cause of concern, to solve this issue, a group of Indian researchers have restored an anti-parasite drug which was used against a range of infections during the World War II. 

 

Mental Healthcare: Time to change

Mental Healthcare: Time to change

By : Dr. Mudasir Firdosi

In India, 7.5% of the population suffer from mental health disorders, according to the World Health Organisation.  The new Mental Healthcare Act seeks to change the way we treat mental health and issues around it.  Will the new legislation mark a start of a new era for mental healthcare?

Marriage within castes linked to genetic diseases

Marriage within castes linked to genetic diseases

By : Dinesh C. Sharma

Isolated populations provide useful resources for studies to understand occurrence of genetic diseases specifically in South Asia. Research studies suspect that marriages within own castes may have harmed the health of many communities in India and such people are more vulnerable to genetic diseases. 

Australia: A safe needle can save lives

Australia: A safe needle can save lives

By : Nabeela Khan Inayati

Sixteen years ago Australia started a unique initiative to provide safe injecting rooms to drug users. The aim was to provide a roof to drug consumers, discourage them from injecting in open and to help monitor their health-risks behaviours. It was a controversial decision but it has been a resounding success. 

US and India fall short in childbirth in similar ways

US and India fall short in childbirth in similar ways

By : Neel Shah

A recent Lancet commission, 77 researchers from around the world, on maternal health concluded that primary struggle in maternal health care is to find the appropriate balance to provide the right patient with the right care at the right time. Providing more care is often mistaken for providing better care. 

First trauma registry - hope for accident victims

First trauma registry - hope for accident victims

By : Dinesh C Sharma

Trauma care scientists in India and Australia are working jointly for the past four years in order to improve quality of trauma care. It is critical to enforce road safety norms, improve road engineering design and implement ban on alcohol sale on highways and better data collection  for improved trauma care. 

Australia: Smart phones and mental health

Australia: Smart phones and mental health

By : Nabeela Khan

Could smart phones help provide mental health care? Mobile technology is helping provide mental healthcare in some villages in rural India. And a mobile phone app designed by Australian developers – said to be the first in the world to use evidence-based suicide prevention methods – is making a difference after a trial, say its makers.

The answer to dengue may be more mosquitoes

The answer to dengue may be more mosquitoes

By : Dinesh C Sharma

Scientists at Monash University in Australia are working on a novel research to generate evidence to show that the solution to eliminating dengue lies in breeding mosquitoes that are incapable of transmitting dengue, Zika and chikungunya. The approach has generated huge interest in dengue-endemic countries, including India. 

Medication misuse - threat to India's public health

Medication misuse - threat to India's public health

By : Nabeela Khan Inayati

Medication misuse is a public health emergency in India. By one estimate 50% of family spending on healthcare is on unnecessary medications or investigations in India. Now, the health ministry plans to set up an electronic platform to plug gaps in the sale of medicines. It will be a big step to collect and collate robust data on supply of medicines. 

 

 

Doctors' Day: What Indian doctors want?

Doctors' Day: What Indian doctors want?

By : Jisha Krishnan

Dr Bidhan Chandra Roy was a renowned philanthropist. He went on to become the chief minister of Bengal in 1948 & was bestowed with Bharat Ratna.It’s in his honour that July 1 (his birth anniversary) is celebrated as Doctor’s Day in India.To mark the occasion, we have compiled a wish list of what Indian doctors really want.

 

 

Home care for stroke patients ineffective: Study

Home care for stroke patients ineffective: Study

By : Dinesh C Sharma

Stroke patients require continuous care including physiotherapy to recover and minimise life-long disability. Indian doctors have been recommending home-based care for rehabilitation of stroke patients. But a new study revealed that this does not work and has surprised medical community. 

The gender gap in healthcare

The gender gap in healthcare

By : Shazia Salam

The study of 1.06 million certified deaths in 2014, by the census department revealed that more Indian men are likely to be admitted to hospital during the last moments of life than women. The data and the difference therein reflect a gendered dynamics about basic access to healthcare.

Zika virus in India: Govt kept it a secret

Zika virus in India: Govt kept it a secret

By : Nabeela Khan

The Zika virus has devastating consequences. It has already infected thousands of people since its outbreak in Brazil. To combat the disease, WHO has made obligatory for every country to notify the disease. In India, the government actively concealed information from public.

Why availability of infertility data is crucial?

Why availability of infertility data is crucial?

By : Jisha Krishnan

Indian IVF services market of infertility clinics, sperm and egg banks is on the rise. But there is no data available about infertility clinics and the number of Indians opting for it because the sector is unregulated. It needs to be regulated with a national framework to monitor and examine assisted reproductive technology in the country.