Following is a summary of current health news briefs.
U.S. blockchain company in tie-up on medical artificial intelligence
U.S. technology company The Bitfury Group has formed a partnership with Insilico Medicine, a Baltimore-based medical artificial intelligence (AI) firm, to create new applications for the healthcare industry using blockchain, Bitfury’s chief executive officer said on Friday. Blockchain is a digital ledger of transactions that gained prominence as the software underpinning the digital currency bitcoin. The technology, being developed in the public and private sectors, has gained attention globally for its ability to permanently record and track assets or transactions across all industries.
Cancer survivors may seek unneeded tests for reassurance
(Reuters Health) – Many people who survive cancer fear recurrence after their treatment ends, according to a study that suggests these concerns may lead to unnecessary tests. Data from 12 previously published studies involving 849 patients show that after completing treatment, patients want as many follow-up exams and tests as possible to reassure them that tumors have not returned, researchers found.
EU Commissioner calls for eggs summit after contamination scare
The European Commissioner charged with food safety has called for a meeting of ministers and national watchdogs to discuss the fallout of an eggs contamination scare that has led to finger pointing between several European Union members. Tensions have risen between agricultural ministers in Belgium, the Netherlands and Germany after traces of moderately toxic insecticide fipronil were found in batches of eggs, linked by authorities to a Dutch supplier of cleaning products.
Fire station air quality puts firefighters at risk
Firefighters have higher than average cancer rates, and while their exposure to carcinogens during fires is well known, a new study suggests exposures in fire stations contribute to their excess cancer risk, too. “Firefighters spend large portions of their shift waiting for calls in a station, during which they can be exposed to diesel exhaust from idling trucks (which is a known carcinogen) and off-gassing from contaminated post-fire gear (which may be contaminated with a variety of known and/or possible carcinogens),” researchers point out in the Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.
Anthem to exit Obamacare market in Virginia next year
U.S. health insurer Anthem Inc said on Friday it will exit Obamacare markets in Virginia and reduce its plan offerings in Washington and Scott counties and the city of Bristol next year. The move comes nearly two weeks after President Donald Trump took aim at insurers by threatening to cut the healthcare subsidy payments that make Obamacare plans affordable, after repeatedly failing in his efforts to dismantle former President Barack Obama’s healthcare law.
Nineteen overcome with dizziness, nausea at New Hampshire hospital
Nineteen staff members were evacuated from a hospital in Exeter, New Hampshire, on Friday and treated for dizziness, nausea and vomiting, a hospital spokeswoman said. By mid-afternoon, officials at Exeter Hospital had yet to determine what caused the incident, which began between 8:30 a.m. and 9 a.m. EDT when five staff members complained of feeling dizzy, spokeswoman Debra Vasapolli said.
U.S. judge orders Illinois to boost disabled care
A U.S. judge on Friday ruled that Illinois was not providing sufficient resources for the care of developmentally disabled residents and ordered the state to come up with a plan to restore services. U.S. District Judge Sharon Johnson Coleman said Illinois, which just ended an unprecedented budget impasse, failed to provide “resources of sufficient quality, scope, and variety” to the residents, who as a result “suffered substantially” from a reduction in services in violation of a federal consent decree.
Philippines reports first avian flu outbreak, to cull 200,000 birds
The Philippines will cull 200,000 chickens, quails and ducks after confirming the country’s first outbreak of bird flu, Agriculture Secretary Emmanuel Pinol said on Friday. The avian flu outbreak was detected in a farm in San Luis municipality in Pampanga province, north of the capital Manila, which later spread to five neighboring farms. There has been no case of human transmission although health officials are conducting checks on farm workers.
(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)