Tag Archives: health

No health benefits from alcohol

Brussels 16.07.2022 There are no health benefits from alcohol consumption in people under 39, according to a new global study published in medical journal The Lancet.

The study suggests that alcohol recommendations should be based on age and location, with the tightest restrictions on males between the ages of 15 and 39, the journal continued.

For the study, researchers used alcohol estimates from 204 countries calculating that 1.34 billion people drank harmful amounts in 2020. They also used data from the Global Burden of Disease 2020 report to measure how much a person can drink before risking their health.

They found in every region, the largest portion of the population drinking unsafe amounts were males between the ages of 15 and 39.

Although the study concluded that there may be small benefits from some alcohol consumption for adults over the age of 40, there is no benefit to younger people.

“Our message is simple: young people should not drink, but older people may benefit from drinking small amounts. While it may not be realistic to think young adults will abstain from drinking, we do think it’s important to communicate the latest evidence so that everyone can make informed decisions about their health,” senior author Emmanuela Gakidou, professor of Health Metrics Sciences at the University of Washington’s School of Medicine, communicated in a press release on July, 14.

The study found that males between the ages of 15 and 39 can consume one tenth (1/10) of a standard alcoholic drink before incurring health risks.

But despite small benefits for older adults, the recommended daily intake for this age group remained below two drinks per day, according to the study.

“Even if a conservative approach is taken and the lowest level of safe consumption is used to set policy recommendations, this implies that the recommended level of alcohol consumption is still too high for younger populations,” the study’s lead author Dana Bryazka.

“Our estimates, based on currently available evidence, support guidelines that differ by age and region,” Bryazka continued. “Understanding the variation in the level of alcohol consumption that minimizes the risk of health loss for populations can aid in setting effective consumption guidelines, supporting alcohol control policies, monitoring progress in reducing harmful alcohol use, and designing public health risk messaging.”

A separate study published earlier this month found that people who drink alone early in life run the risk of developing alcohol use disorder later in adulthood.

Young people who drank alone at age 18 were 35% more likely to report symptoms of alcohol use disorder, while people who reported drinking by themselves in their early twenties were 60% more likely to report these symptoms.

Close to 25% of adolescents aged 18 and 40% adults aged 23-24 reported drinking alone.

WHO: Dr.Tedros re-appointment

Brussels 29.10.2021 The appointment of the next Director-General of the World Health Organization will take place at the Seventy-fifth World Health Assembly in May 2022 (WHA75). The Director-General is WHO’s chief technical and administrative officer.

The election process began when Member States, through a circular letter sent by the WHO Secretariat in April 2021, were invited to submit proposals for candidates for the Director-General position. The deadline for submission of proposals was 23 September 2021. The date on which WHO is scheduled to publish information on candidates, including the curricula vitae and other particulars of their qualifications and experience as received from Member States, is to follow the closure of the last WHO Regional Committee meeting of the year.

As today marks the closure of the last Regional Committee meeting, WHO can announce that a single candidate was proposed by Member States by the 23 September 2021 deadline: Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, who is the incumbent Director-General.

Proposals from 28 WHO Member States, from all WHO regions, were received by the deadline: Austria, Bahrain, Barbados, Botswana, Cook Islands, Croatia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Indonesia, Ireland, Kazakhstan, Kenya, Luxembourg, Malta, Netherlands, Oman, Portugal, Rwanda, Slovakia, Spain, Sweden, Tonga, and Trinidad and Tobago.

During the 150th session of the Executive Board in January 2022, the Board will conduct an initial screening to ensure that the candidate meets the criteria decided by the Health Assembly, interview him and then decide on the nomination by secret ballot. The nomination will be submitted to WHA75.

The appointment will take place at WHA75 in May 2022, also by secret ballot. The term of office of the next Director-General will start on 16 August 2022.

A Director-General can be re-appointed once. Therefore, Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, the incumbent Director-General, is eligible to be proposed for a second term of five years.

EUCO: EU Summit conclusions on pandemic

Brussels 22.10.2021 European Council conclusions on COVID-19:
“Vaccination campaigns around Europe have brought about significant progress in the fight against COVID-19. Nevertheless the situation in some Member States remains very serious. In order to further increase vaccination rates throughout the Union, efforts to overcome vaccine hesitancy should be stepped up, including by tackling disinformation, notably on social media platforms. It is necessary to remain vigilant regarding the emergence and spread of possible new variants.

“In light of the development of the epidemiological situation, the European Council calls for further coordination to facilitate free movement within, and travel into, the EU, and for a revision of the two Council recommendations. It encourages the Commission to accelerate its work regarding mutual recognition of certificates with third countries.

“Based on the experiences of the COVID-19 crisis, the EU’s resilience to and horizontal preparedness for crises must be strengthened. To ensure better prevention of, preparedness for and response to future health emergencies in the EU, the European Council calls for the conclusion of the negotiations on the Health Union legislative package and for ensuring that Member States are adequately involved in the governance of the Health Emergency Preparedness and Response Authority (HERA). It recalls the need to swiftly take work forward on access to medicines across Member States.

“The European Council reiterates the EU’s continued commitment to contributing to the international response to the pandemic and to ensuring access to vaccines for all. It calls for the rapid removal of obstacles hampering the global roll-out of vaccines, and invites the Commission to further engage directly with manufacturers in this respect. This will allow Member States to speed up the delivery of vaccines to countries most in need. The EU will continue to support the production and uptake of vaccines in partner countries.

“In the context of the upcoming G20 meeting and in view of the special session of the World Health Assembly in November, the European Council underlines its support for a strong, central role of the World Health Organization in future global health governance and for the objective of agreeing an international treaty on pandemics”.

EU welcomes American tourists

Brussels 20.06.2021 Americans are admitted to visit the European Union again, vaccinated or not. The European Council has updated its list of countries whose citizens and residents should be allowed to travel freely to the bloc’s of 27 states, and the United States is finally on it.

But before you purchase ticket, be aware there may be catches. In fact, there could be 27 different combinations of them. While the updated list published Friday is a recommendation on who may be granted entry based on their home country’s health situation, each EU government makes its own border decisions.

This includes what nationalities to admit, whether to require PCR test or rapid antigen coronavirus test upon arrival, and whether quarantine is mandatory. And while the European Commission, the EU executive branch, emphatically urges countries to coordinate such rules with their neighbours to ensure mobility, that plea has often fallen on deaf administrative ears.

The European Council has officially recommended European Union member states to lift restrictions on non-essential travel from the U.S. That’s welcome news for the many Americans that have been holding out hope of taking a post-pandemic European vacation this summer.

Several others were also added today to the E.U.’s so-called “white list” of nations, territories and special administrative regions from which leisure travel is allowed: Albania, Hong Kong, Lebanon, Macau, North Macedonia, Serbia and Taiwan.

This latest move by the EU institutions have a long way toward restoring Transatlantic travel in the wake of the COVID-19 crisis, something which airlines have been pressing U.S. and E.U. officials to actively support as vaccination rates improve on both sides of the Atlantic.

Still, it’s important to note that the Council’s recommendations aren’t legally binding and that each member state is responsible for implementing these guidelines.

Bloc members can also choose to impose added regulations as they see appropriate, including quarantine, testing or vaccination requirements.

Japan PM Abe resigns

Japan Prime Minister Shinzo Abe announced his resignation over health issues, opening a vacancy for the top job of the world’s third-biggest economy in which he sought to revive growth and bolster its defenses.

“I have decided that I will step down as prime minister, with the belief that I cannot continue being prime minister if I do not have the confidence that I can carry out the job entrusted to me by the people,” Abe, 65, told a news conference.

He said he had decided to step down now to avoid a political vacuum as the country copes with its novel coronavirus outbreak.

“I apologize from the bottom of my heart that despite all of the support from the Japanese people, I am leaving the post with one full year left in my term and in the midst of various policies and coronavirus,” Abe said.

Abe decision will trigger a leadership race in the ruling Liberal Democratic Party (LDP) – most likely in two or three weeks – and the winner must be formally elected in parliament. The new party leader will hold the post for the rest of Abe’s term.

Former defense minister Shigeru Ishiba and former foreign minister Fumio Kishida both swiftly expressed interes, media reported. Among others whose names have been floated is Abe’s close aide, Chief Cabinet Secretary Yoshihide Suga.

#COVID19: Boris Johnson admitted to hospital

UK Prime Minister Boris Johnson has been admitted to hospital for tests, as the symptoms of his coronavirus infection persist for 10 days. Johnson is one of nearly 48,000 Britons to have caught the novel virus.

“On the advice of his doctor, the Prime Minister has tonight been admitted to hospital for tests,” Downing Street said in a statement on Sunday evening. “This is a precautionary step,” the statement continued, “as the Prime Minister continues to have persistent symptoms of coronavirus ten days after testing positive for the virus.”

Moscow: seven Chinese hospitalised

Seven members of a tourist group from China were hospitalized in Moscow with high fever, Interfax news agency reports with reference to an informed source.

The tour group stayed in one of the capital’s hotels. After deterioration, seven people were hospitalized with high fever, ”the source told reporters. According to him, at the moment, other visitors to the hotel are examined by doctors, all are urgently taken tests.

World Health Organisation published hygiene recommendation to avoid contamination with coronavirus,

Juncker hospitalised again

Jean-Claude Juncker, the incumbent president of the European Commission, is to undergo aneurysm surgery on November 11, the press service announced on October 31. 

He will undergo surgery on 11 November to treat an aneurysm,” Commission spokesperson said. However she did not provide for further details of the diagnosis.

An EU official said the surgery had been scheduled for weeks and Juncker has been restricted in travelling, receiving medical advice to avoid flights.

The apparent fading health of Juncker, 64, a former Luxembourg Prime minister, has been nourishing a great deal of speculation while numerous scenes. depicting his difficulty to walk were circulating through social media.

During summer holidays he has undergone the removal of the gallbladder in an emergency operation, transported by helicopter to his native Luxembourg from a vacation destination in the Austrian mountains. The hospitalisation prevented Juncker to participate in G7 Summit in Biarritz, France.

Juncker urgently hospitalised

European Commission president Jean-Claude Juncker has interrupted his summer holiday in Austria to be urgently submitted to hospital to remove his gallbladder.

According to the press-release of the European Commission services, “had to shorten his holiday in Austria for medical reasons. He was taken back to Luxembourg where he will undergo an urgent cholecystectomy [surgical removal of the gallbladder].” 

Recovery from cholecystectomy might take from two up to eight weeks, dependent on the type of surgery performed in each specific case. In case of laparoscopic surgery with minor cuts, the period will take less time, than from a conventional open surgery.

Cholecystectomy removal is a relatively common and straightforward procedure. It is possible to live an active life without a gallbladder. However the multiple complications are also possible, depending to each individual situation.

The former Luxembourg Prime Minister, whose health has been a subject of numerous speculations for years, will conclude his mandate as the head of the European Commission and pass the responsibility to the German Ursula von der Leyen on October 31.