19 – 25 January 2013

BBC News ask John Cairns for comments on a new European Commission-funded study testing the quality-adjusted life years (QALY) method used by NICE to assess the value of new drug treatments in England and Wales: “QALYs are certainly not perfect and we should be looking for better ways of informing decision making. But getting rid of an imperfect system without replacing it with a better one is not the way forward.” Also covered by Daily Mail and several online publications.

Martin McKee submits a letter to the Independent in response to an article about providing care for frail, elderly people in places other than hospital wards: “The UK has a relatively poor record of offering older people effective treatment from which they would benefit, illustrated by the marked decline in cancer survival among those over 65 here, something that other countries have shown is not inevitable… if the alternative settings are in the social care sector, they will no longer be free for the patient, exacerbating the problems faced by those who, even after the latest changes, will still be receiving some of the least generous state pensions in Europe”.

Vikram Patel’s study on Suicide Mortality in India, published in the Lancet last year, is referenced in a BBC News article about suicide among Indian farmers.

An interview in News Medical with Kara Hanson about subsidised antimalarial drugs: “Our evaluation showed that AMFm [Affordable Medicines Facility-malaria] can have a dramatic effect on availability and affordability of quality assured antimalarials. These effects were more marked in the private for-profit sector than in the public sector. This is partly because changing the financing mechanism for the public sector doesn’t alter the fundamental problems of securing drug supply.”

Ian Roberts’ biomass study is referenced in an article on the New American examining globalists and the obesity crisis.

Sridhar Venkatapuram talks to Digital Spy for a podcast about a new global study on wellness by McCann: “People no longer think of health, wellness and wellbeing as things that are born out of luck, but things that they can actually do something about, and their environment does affect, and that their society and government can do something about.”

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