21 January 2019

Shortening doctors’ internships could help ease bottlenecks

Business Day 14 January 2019 - The SA Medical Association says there are too few internships to accommodate medical students graduating in SA and abroad, especially in Cuba

Shortening doctors’ internships from two years to one is being mooted to alleviate the strain in the training of doctors. Health department spokesperson Popo Maja said: "What we know is that one of the health stakeholders did entertain the idea of internship training being reviewed. But it is too early for us to say anything about it." For the article click here

Philip Hampton to step down as Glaxo CEO ahead of split

Business Day 21 January 2019 - In December, CEO Emma Walmsley noted a plan to split Glaxo into two units: one for prescription drugs and vaccines, the other for OTC products

GlaxoSmithKline chair Philip Hampton will step down after more than three-and-a-half years in the role, as Britain's biggest drug maker prepares to split its business into two. The announcement comes a month after Glaxo's CEO, Emma Walmsley, announced her boldest plans yet — to split the company into two businesses — one for prescription drugs and vaccines, the other for over-the-counter products. For the article click here

WHO deliberations unlikely to be beneficial to drug patent holders

Business Day 21 January 2019 - The world health body failing to realise that exclusive rights to new drugs incentivize industry’s innovation

The World Health Organisation (WHO) is holding its annual executive board meeting in Geneva this week. The meeting sets the agenda and proposed resolutions for its world health assembly in May, when health ministers gather to debate global health issues and set future policies. One of the many action items on the agenda is to “foster innovation and access to health products by appropriate intellectual property rules and management”. It is unlikely that we will see innovative thinking from a board that continues to presume patents are a major barrier to access to medicines, and thus a major obstacle to health and development. For the article click here

New safety concerns emerge on latest HIV wonder drug

Business Day 17 January 2019 - Health department plans to go ahead with implementation of the new drug in April

New safety concerns have emerged about the HIV drug dolutegravir, which the government plans to roll out in April.  In 2018 drug regulators warned of potential harm to babies born to women who took dolutegravir during early pregnancy, after preliminary findings from a small study in Botswana showed an increased risk of neural tube defect. For the article click here

New sensor monitors blood flow after vascular surgery

BizCommunity 17 January 2019 - Stanford University researchers have developed a battery-free, wireless and biodegradable sensor that could make it easier for doctors to monitor the success of blood vessel surgery.

“Measurement of blood flow is critical in many medical specialties, so a wireless biodegradable sensor could impact multiple fields, including vascular, transplant, reconstructive and cardiac surgery,” said Dr Paige Fox, assistant professor of surgery. For the article click here

How we used computers to figure out drugs that can beat drug-resistant TB

BizCommunity 16 January 2019 - Tuberculosis (TB) is one of the leading causes of death from infectious diseases. 

An estimated 3.5% of new cases and 18% of previously treated cases of TB are drug resistant. There is therefore still a need to identify alternative drugs. But the drug discovery process is fairly lengthy (10 to 15 years). This timeline can be shortened with the aid of computers. For the article click here

Edward Lifesciences pays Boston Scientific $180m to end patent row

Business Day 15 January 2019 - The settlement is seen as positive for the industry as a whole

Edwards Lifesciences has paid rival Boston Scientific Corporation $180m as part of a settlement to end long-standing patent disputes between the two medical device makers. Boston Scientific and Edwards Lifesciences have been embroiled in a number of legal cases for several years involving heart valve replacement systems, including transcatheter aortic valves, in the US and Europe. All pending cases or appeals in courts and patent offices will be dismissed, the companies said in a joint statement. For the article click here

WATCH: Life Healthcare sells stake in Indian hospital group

Business Day 15 January 2019 - Life Healthcare has finally managed to sell its close to 50% stake in India’s Max Healthcare.

After months of negotiating, the company struck a purchase deal with Radiant Life Care Private which is still subject to approval by Indian authorities. For the article click here

Vaccines have health effects beyond protecting against target diseases

BizCommunity 15 January 2019 - A measles vaccine protects against measles infection.

By introducing a bit of weakened virus, the immune system learns how to deal with it, so when a real measles virus comes along, it can eliminate it. But does the immune system learn more from the vaccine? Recent research suggests, rather intriguingly, that it does. For the article click here

Publication date: 1/21/2019