Free State health has reached ‘crisis point’

BLOEMFONTEIN: A dismal picture of the Free State’s public health system emerged on Tuesday, 7 July 2015, where a public commission of inquiry is being held, with some saying public health had reached “crisis point”.
On what was the first day of testimonies, anecdotes were heard of a shortage of equipment, medicine and broken ambulances.
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Microchip that could reduce animal testing has designers excited

One of the greatest challenges to our healthcare system today is creating effective new drugs. Despite ever-increasing investments in research and development, the number of drugs that win approval for clinical use each year has steadily decreased over the past 50 years. It now costs of more than $2.5bn (£1.6bn) to bring a single compound from the bench to patients. Because many have to be developed to find one that works, drug costs have become exorbitant. Continue reading

Minister Zulu: SA values relations with the US

PRETORIA: South Africa continues to value its relationship with the United States, Small Business Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu said on Thursday.
“South Africa greatly values our relationship with the US. Our partnership both domestically and regionally continues to yield benefits for our people in the areas of trade and investment, capacity building, health and education, youth and gender empowerment and the promotion of democracy and good governance in the African continent,” said the minister.
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A wearable night vision-like goggles to view see the cancer cells

A NIGERIAN-born scientist, Dr. Samuel Achilefu, has won the prestigious St. Louis Award for 2014 for creating cancer-visualizing glasses.Achilefu, a professor of Radiology and Biomedical Engineering, and his team developed the imaging technology in cancer diagnosis into a wearable night vision-like goggles so surgeons could see the cancer cells while operating.“They basically have to operate in the dark,” Bloomberg Businessweek quoted Achilefu, 52, as saying.“I thought, what if we create something that let’s you see things that aren’t available to the ordinary human eye.” Continue reading

Innovation in healthcare: it’s down to better management

Following the world’s first in skin graft surgery in the Western Cape recently, a healthcare management expert says more innovations such as these depend on better management in the healthcare system.
Better management education for clinicians is essential if we want more medical innovations such as the recent ground-breaking skin culture transplant performed by doctors at Tygerberg and Groote Schuur in Cape Town.
So says Bruce MacDonald, course convenor of the customised Health Leadership Programme (HLP) XXII at the UCT Graduate School of Business. The HLP course is customised for the staff at the Western Cape Department of Health by which it is also fully funded.
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VISIQ: Innovative ultrasound to boost healthcare access for South African mothers

Approximately 10 times smaller than a traditional ultrasound machine, it provides high quality images, is portable and easy to use, and is designed for expectant mothers in remote areas who wouldn’t otherwise have access to this type of innovative technology, or advanced care.Royal Philips has launched a new ultra-mobile ultrasound system VISIQ to the South African market. The size of a tablet, the VISIQ is the first ultra-mobile system from Philips.
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Media and Critical Reporting of Traditional Medicine Claims in Africa

African traditional medicine is widely perceived as a form of voodoo medicine, as a survival of some stone age pre-modern illiterate formation that still functions and fulfils medical purposes for Africans. This is, at least, how many anthropologists have viewed the subject. They have argued that African traditional medicine is unlike ‘western medicine’, and then go on to establish how witchcraft and magic is embedded in this ‘unique’ medical practice. African medicine men and women are portrayed as witch doctors – as if the trado-medical profession is about treating and curing witchcraft.
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