Top health happenings in 2011 in India

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January 24: Eminent Hindustani classical vocalist Pandit Bhimsen Joshi died of old age related ailments.

January 26th: Renowned gynecologist Indira Hinduja, cardiologist Jose Chacko Periappuram, orthopedican S P Mandal, cardiologist Mansoor Hasan, endrocrinologist Sivapatham Vittal, gastroenterologist Madanaur Ahmed Ali and A Marthanda Pillai, a neurologist from Kerala were awarded Padma awards.

April 5: Anna Hazare did a fast from 5 April 2011 to 9 April 2011.

April 24: In Prashanti Nilayam Specialty Hospital Sri Sathya Sai Baba died at 7.40 a.m. due to cardiorespiratory failure and multi organ failure. He was terminally on prolonged ventilator.

May 16: The Union Health Ministry reconstituted the Board of Governors for the Medical Council of India with Professor K.K. Talwar former Director, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh as the Chairman.

June 1: 44-year-old Sunita got a heart transplant at Ganga Ram Hospital.

June 9: MF Hussain, one of India’s best-known artists, died of a heart attack at the Royal Brampton Hospital in London.

June 12: Baba Ram Dev was in the news because of failure of continuing Satya Graha for more than seven days despite being a Yogi. He broke his fast over black money on June 12 in Haridwar.

June 15: In Dehradun, Swami Nigamananda, an ascetic who valiantly fought against the stone quarries and pollution of River Ganga, by observing a fast for 114 days, died at Himalayan Institute of Medical Science.

August 4: Sonia Gandhi got treated in US for an unknown illness.

August 14: Shammi Kapoor died of chronic renal failure at age 79. He was on ventilator.

August 20-28: Anna Hazare did his fast at Ramlila Maidan in New Delhi. He lost 7.5 kg and was very dehydrated after the 288 hour long fast.

August 20-28: Dr Naresh Trehan in the news for treating Anna Hazare.

September 7: Amar Singh, a kidney transplant patient, was sent to jail.

September 7: Eleven people were killed and 62 injured in a powerful blast outside Delhi High Court gate.

September 23: Mansur Ali Khan Pataudi, who overcame an impaired eye to become a visionary and pioneering captain of the Indian Test team, has died in Delhi at the age of 70.

October: Perfect Health Mela this year was organized at multiple locations.

November 5: Celebrated Indian folk singer and composer Bhupen Hazarika, known as the Bard of Brahmaputra, died at the age of 86.

November 11: Fourteen persons died and 40 others suffered injuries when a major fire engulfed a congregation of eunuchs at a community centre in an east Delhi.

November 16: Aishwarya Rai Bachchan gave birth to a baby girl at age 38.

November 26: Yuvraj in the news for NHL, chest tumor.

December 1: Aamir Khan and his wife Kiran Rao became parents to a baby boy born to a surrogate mother.

December 3 : Dev Anand died in his room at the Washington Mayfair Hotel in London at the age of 88 (4 December 2011 by Indian Standard Time) of a cardiac arrest.

December 8-11th: Emedinews brought out daily newsletter for cardiological society of India 63rd annual conference in Mumbai.

December 9: 89 people, most of them patients, died when fire swept through a Kolkata AMRI hospital.

December 13: Government postponed the NEET UG test by another year after opposition from several states like Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh, Gujarat, West Bengal, Goa etc.

December 21: A decision to implement the Clinical Establishments (Registration and Regulation) Bill, 2010 in Delhi was taken.

December 21: Delhi to have three more new medical colleges.

December 23: The National Commission for Human Resources for Health Bill, 2011, to bring all independent bodies such as Medical Council of India (MCI), Dental Council of India (DCI), Pharmacy Council of India and Nursing Council of India under one umbrella, was passed.

December 24th: The fear of Japanese Encephalitis was in the news. On Dec 24th the government announced a national programme to the tune of nearly Rs 2,000 crore to combat Japanese Encephalitis and Acute
Encephalitis Syndrome (AES) in the upcoming Union budget.

December 27: Anna Hazare began a 3-day hunger strike at MMRDA ground

December 27: Sachin Tendulkar was in the news for his nervous nineties.

December 28: Anna Hazare called off his 3-day fast due to ill health.

The winter this year was the coldest winter in the last 10 years.

Nothing happened in the sector of Anti-Quackery Bill.

Medical Education in India – Statistics

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1. Ministry allows a medical college to be started on a 10-acre plot in nine cities – Mumbai, Chennai, Kolkata, Delhi, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Ahmedabad, Kanpur and Pune. The list is being expanded and will include Orissa, Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan.

2. The ministry will allow these states to have split campuses – hospital and medical college within 10km of each other.

3. India has a density of one medical college per 38.41 lakhs.

4. Around 315 medical colleges are spread across 188 of 642 districts.

5. There is only one medical college for 115 lakhs in Bihar, UP (95 lakhs), Madhya Pradesh (73 lakhs) and Rajasthan (68 lakhs), whereas Kerala, Karnataka and Tamil Nadu each have medical college for 15 lakhs, 16 lakhs and 19 lakhs, respectively.

6. India has the largest number of medical colleges in the world.

7. India produces over 30,000 doctors and 18,000 specialists every year.

8. India’s average annual output is 100 graduates per medical college in comparison to 110 in North America, Central Europe (125), Western Europe (149) and Eastern Europe (220). China, which has 188 colleges, churns out 1,75,000 doctors annually with an average of 930 graduates per college.

9. The high-power expert group (HLEG) of the Planning Commission working on universal health coverage has proposed a phased addition of 187 colleges. By 2015 under phase A, 59 new medical colleges will admit students in the 15 states of Assam, Bihar, Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Haryana, Jammu and Kashmir, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Meghalaya, Orissa, Punjab, Rajasthan, UP and West Bengal.

10. By 2017, 13 of these states will have an additional 70 medical colleges, and by 2022, 58 additional colleges will be built in two additional phases (2017-20 and 2020-22). By 2022, India will have one medical college per 25 lakhs in all states except Bihar, Uttar Pradesh and West Bengal.

11. This will enable the additional availability of 1.2 lakh doctors by 2017 and another 1.9 lakh doctors between 2017 and 2022. Planning Commission’s high-level expert group (HLEG) target of one doctor per 1,000 will be achieved by 2028.

12. The number of allopathic doctors registered with MCI has increased since 1974 to 6.12 lakhs in 2011 – a ratio of 1 doctor for 1,953, or a density of 0.5 doctors per 1,000.

Texting and checking email in OT while work can be dangerous

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There is a growing problem in operating rooms. Distracted doctors and surgical staff are often texting or surfing the web while performing patient procedures. It’s led to medical errors and lawsuits.
A patient in Colorado who was left partly paralyzed, allegedly by a distracted doctor. The neurosurgeon made at least 10 personal calls on his cell phone during the operation. The law suit was solved under out of court settlement.

Medical professionals are expected to multitask but distracted doctors can lead to dangerous errors. Doctors, nurses and technicians text, SMS, update on Facebook and do internet shopping. Half of heart-monitor technicians text during surgery, according to a survey in Perfusion, a heart-surgery journal.

Distracted doctors could be sued for medical mistakes caused by inattentiveness. Such cases usually require expert testimony to prove the surgeon failed to properly care for the patient. Hospitals that employ distracted doctors could also face lawsuits under the legal theory of “respondent superior,” which holds an employer liable for employees’ negligence. Dr. Trevor Smith’s peer-reviewed survey of 439 medical staff was published this year in Perfusion, a medical journal about cardiopulmonary bypass surgery.
• 55% of staff who monitor heart bypass machines acknowledged to researchers that they had talked on cell phones during heart surgery.
• 50% said they had texted while in surgery.
• Perfusionists studied reported that, while in the middle of cardiopulmonary bypass surgery, they had: accessed e-mail (21%); used the internet (15.1%) and checked/posted on social networking sites (3.1%).

In operating room, long cases allow anesthesiologists, circulating nurses, as well as perfusionists to access their cell phones. Checking email, sending texts, and surfing the net, can be potential hazards to patients, when personnel need to be focused on patient monitoring. Boredom drives staff to check their phones and messaging devices.

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