Week in health

Last week, the Minister of Health, Dr Agnes Binagwaho, during an event in Washington DC, received the Roux Prize award. The award worth $ 100,000 (Rwf73.6m) was bestowed upon her for her contribution in turning data and evidence into health impact.

Last week, the Minister of Health, Dr Agnes Binagwaho, during an event in Washington DC, received the Roux Prize award. The award worth $ 100,000 (Rwf73.6m) was bestowed upon her for her contribution in turning data and evidence into health impact.

Binagwaho became the second winner after the introduction of the award in 2013. The first winner, who got the award last year, is Harvard-trained epidemiologist and mayor of Cali, Colombia, Dr. Rodrigo Guerrero.

Meanwhile, the Huye Intermediate Court last Monday denied bail to the three employees of Kabutare Hospital accused of embezzling hospital funds. The trio was sent back on remand for 30 days as they await trial.

The suspects include the hospital director, Dr Saleh Niyonzima, and two accountants — Jean Claude Sebushumba and Alice Mukashema.

Athanasie Nyiransaguye, the presiding judge, ruled that there was strong evidence linking the trio to the alleged crime and that release could jeopardize ongoing investigations. The suspects were arrested on September 30 and have since been detained at Ngoma Police Station, following an audit, which established misappropriation of Rwf 60 million.

In other parts of the country, doctors warned Ngoma District residents against consuming homemade alcohol.

The warning came days after at least 29 people were admitted at Kibungo Hospital on Friday after drinking locally made crude brew.

According to Dr William Namanya, the Director of Kibungo Hospital, the victims were lucky to survive.

Namanya told the Newtimes that, they complained of acute stomachache and diarrhea, and after the fact finding mission in the villages, there was a revelation of a horrible state of hygiene in the home of the person who brewed the beer.

Additionally, while Rwanda has made significant progress in family planning, evidence from the 2015 Demographic and Health Survey key findings reveal that indicators of family planning are not moving as fast as expected to reach the Health Sector Strategic Plan III targets. Experts say despite the high awareness regarding some family planning methods among all married women, there remains common misconceptions, including fear of side effects and that these have to be addressed. Jozef Maerien, the United Nations Population Fund Rwanda representative while speaking during a press conference ahead of the international conference on family planning slated for next month said more efforts are needed to achieve family planning.

In other news around the globe, the world’s largest clinical trial to examine whether aspirin can prevent cancers returning begun in the UK.

At least 11,000 people who have had early bowel, breast, prostate, stomach and oesophageal cancer will be involved. Uncertainty about the drug’s possible anti-cancer qualities has led to fierce medical debate in recent years. If proven to work, scientists say it would be “game-changing”, by providing a cheap and effective way to help more patients survive.

In the event of the study, funded by the charity Cancer Research UK and the NIHR — the research arm of the NHS — patients will take a tablet every day for five years.

After wards, researchers will compare groups of patients taking different doses of aspirin with people taking dummy (placebo) pills and check for any recurrences of cancer.

 

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