31 March 2019

Will proposed new road accident scheme be better for South Africans?

Business Day 27 March 2019 - Replacement for the Road Accident Fund is designed to benefit lower-income people and speed up access to health care

The provisions of the bill are based on the recommendations of the Road Accident Fund commission, and a policy framework published in 2009 by the department of transport. The commission’s findings were presented in a comprehensive report, published in 2002, and include the following key recommendations: a shift from a legal to a medical and rehabilitative basis; a shift from a “fault” to a “no-fault” basis; and a shift from compensation to benefits. The question South Africans are confronted with is whether they will be better off under RABS or whether they are better off under the RAF. Given the nature of the benefits proposed under RABS and the removal of the litigation process and associated costs, RABS could be more cost-effective. For the article click here.

SA medical schemes in good health

BizCommunity 1 April 2019 - South Africa's largest medical schemes - both open and restricted - are in good shape and have sufficient reserves to pay members' claims, according to Alexander Forbes Health's latest edition of Diagnosis

The insights were drawn from the Alexander Forbes Health Medical Schemes Sustainability Index which tracks key performance metrics of medical schemes and aims to provide a comparative assessment of future sustainability between schemes. The index is calculated from a base year of 2006 and considers a scheme’s membership size, membership growth, average beneficiary age, operating results, accumulated funds per beneficiary, and trends in the scheme’s solvency levels. For the article click here  Link to Diagnosis

AstraZeneca in huge deal with Daiichi over breast-cancer therapy

Business Day 29 March 2019 - The deal on the drug known as trastuzumab deruxtecan sent shares in Japan's Daiichi soaring 16%

AstraZeneca will pay up to $6.9bn to work with Daiichi Sankyo in a hotly-tipped experimental treatment for breast cancer, in a direct challenge to the world's biggest cancer drug maker, Roche. For the article click here

New Ebola cases reported in DRC

Business Day 29 March 2019 - DRC declared a tenth outbreak of Ebola in 40 years last August in North Kivu province before the virus spread into the neighbouring Ituri region.

Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) authorities indicated renewed cases of Ebola contamination in two localities on Friday, as they battle an epidemic that has killed 652 to date. Last week, the World Health Organisation warned "the risk of national and regional spread remains very high" and said dealing with the epidemic could take another six months. For the article click here

What African countries can do about ensuring safer surgery

BizCommunity 27 March 2019 - The World Health Organisation (WHO) has come up with plans and tools to help countries ensure safer surgery in their hospitals and clinics.

These include the surgical safety checklist and safe childbirth checklist. But implementation is still poor in most African countries. A recent report in The Lancet medical journal suggests that at least 4·2 million people worldwide die within 30 days of surgery each year. Half of these deaths occur in low- and middle-income countries. This number of postoperative deaths accounts for 7·7% of all deaths globally, making it the third greatest contributor to deaths, after heart disease and stroke. For the article click here

MARIKA SBOROS: Push-up pushovers could be headed for heart problems

Business Day 27 March 2019 - Harvard medical research suggests an inability to perform 10 signals potential health issues

The push-up’s power could make it a fast, cheap and objective way for doctors to assess patients’ heart disease risk, the Harvard researchers say in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Science backs up benefits as CVD remains a leading cause of death worldwide, including in SA. Along with well-recognised risk factors, such as smoking, hypertension (high blood pressure) and diabetes, unfavourable health consequences of physical inactivity on heart health are well-established, the Harvard scientists note. For the article click here

Novartis’s Mayzent approved to treat progressive multiple sclerosis

Business Day 27 March 2019 - Mayzent, with a US list price of $88,500, is the first treatment approved for patients with secondary progressive MS in more than 15 years

Novartis, the Swiss drug maker, is seeking to reach as many as 250,000 US patients with an advanced and debilitating form of multiple sclerosis, after regulators cleared its new medicine, Mayzent. The drug was approved to treat secondary progressive multiple sclerosis, which afflicts about 100,000 people in the US, said Paul Hudson, head of the Basel, Switzerland-based company’s pharmaceutical business. An additional 150,000 patients might also be candidates for the therapy, as eight out of 10 of people with the more common type of multiple sclerosis, known as relapsing-remitting, will see their disease worsen into the severe form, he said. For the article click here

OxyContin maker Purdue said to have settled opioids abuse case

Business Day 26 March 2019 - This is the first settlement to result from a wave of recent lawsuits over the drug maker’s marketing of painkillers.

Purdue Pharma has agreed to settle a lawsuit by the state of Oklahoma accusing the OxyContin painkiller maker of helping fuel an opioid abuse epidemic, a person familiar with the matter said. It is the first settlement to result from a wave of recent lawsuits over the drug. For the article click here

Doctor's orders: Start saving now

BizCommunity 26 March 2019 - Medical doctors have tremendous earning potential and can expect to accumulate wealth in their lifetime. But here's the stark reality. 

From the day you commence community service, you're likely to need a capital amount of around R60m on retirement if you hope to maintain your lifestyle after you stop practising. For the article click here

Publication date: 4/1/2019