High toxin levels found in bottled water in Mumbai
High levels of certain carcinogens were found in bottled drinking water samples in Mumbai, according to a study conducted by the Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC) at Trombay.
A BARC team of four scientists checked 90 samples from 18 brands of bottled water sold by various manufacturers in the city. They found 27% samples contained higher than World Health Organization-permitted limits of bromates, a salt containing bromide that is a by-product of the disinfection. The International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) classifies bromates as Group 2B carcinogens that could possibly cause cancer in humans. Some samples had bromate levels four times the WHO limit of 10 microgram per litre.
The BARC findings were published in the January 10 issue of Current Science Journal, a peer-reviewed Indian science journal. Its objective was to check the water for chemical by-products caused by disinfecting processes.
Using ozone, for instance, can form bromates if the water had bromine to begin with. Similarly, certain hypochloride salts can lead to the formation of chlorites and chlorates that are known to affect red blood cells of mice. “Bottled water is in many cases drawn from ground water, which, in our country, is known to contain heavy metals that can cause chronic diseases like dementia, heart problems as well as hypertension”, as per some expert researchers.
SC asks Centre, states to list out steps to curb leprosy
New Delhi: Supreme Court today asked the centreand state governments to apprise it of steps taken to eradicate and curb leprosy, saying it was their responsibility to curb the spread of the disease which is curable.
The court had earlier rapped the authorities for their "apathy" in eradicating leprosy from the country, saying despite it being "curable", the disease still remains a stigma. Earlier too, the bench had granted time for filing of replies by the centre and others and had said, "This is a case which should have been taken on priority basis. Leprosy, as on today, is curable and yet because of apathy shown by the authorities concerned, it still remains a stigma."
"Despite an effective cure, namely Multi-Drug Therapy (MDT) which has been available since 1981, that can completely cure 99 per cent of leprosy bacteria, due to apathy of the Government of India and the State Governments, people are still suffering from the said disease, which is treated as a social stigma," the petition said. It has sought a direction to the governments that drugs be made available at primary health centres in the country. It also pleaded that an appropriate scheme be formulated to bring people suffering from leprosy into the national mainstream.
President Obama announce $3 Billion for International Green Fund
President Barack Obama had promised a $3 billion U.S. contribution to the green climate fund, as an effort to help poor countries to deal successfully with the effects of climate change. The announcement was expected to be done in the meeting of G-20 industrial nations in Australia.
The other countries joined U.S. are Mexico, South Korea, Germany, France, and Japan, in releasing the fund.This fund will be utilized with for the privet sector investment, that will encourages world market to produce clean energy technology and creating opportunities for entrepreneurs and manufacturers including those from the United States
Mali confirms its second fatal case of Ebola virus disease
Mali’s Ministry of Health has confirmed the country’s second fatal case of Ebola virus disease. The case occurred in a nurse who worked at a privately-run clinic in the capital city, Bamako.
The nurse, who was showing Ebola-like symptoms, was isolated on the evening of 10 November following suspicions of Ebola infection in a patient from Guinea who was treated at the clinic in late October. These suspicions were raised by an alert from health authorities in Guinea. The nurse died during the night of 11 November.
Testing was done at the biosafety level 3 laboratory in Bamako. In line with standard procedures, samples are being sent to a WHO-approved laboratory for confirmation and further virological analysis.
Private health centers bill is passed
A bill governing private health centers has been passed by the FNC, but not before it was stripped of proposed provisions on patients’ rights. The 29-article bill, which replaces a 1996 law, was sent to the council’s health committee a year ago for study. The committee assembled four times to discuss the law with Ministry of Health officials and the heads of private health centers. In its report, the committee said the law was critical in light of a study that found poor safety standards in some centers.
It said Seha, the Abu Dhabi Health Services Company, closed 11 centers and warned 13 others about standards. Among the complaints were endangering health, posing a threat to patient security and risk of spreading disease. The committee also claimed that some owners cared more about investing in hospitals and clinics for profit and had little concern for patient well-being. It criticized a shortage of up to 40 per cent in medical staff, with a heavy reliance on visiting doctors and sending patients abroad for treatment. But a list of patients’ rights added to the bill by the health committee was removed after a three-hour debate with the Minister of Health, Dr Abdul Rahman Al Owais.