Tags: economy, statistics
Dr. Hans Rosling presents statistical facts about World health and economy in a way you are not used to seeing them presented.
I am not mentally depressed and my statistical chance to get depressed during the next 12 months is lower than average. That is what I learned from this test which, unlike most other web tests, is scientifically compiled and can be regarded as serious.
The predictD research group is made up of mental health professionals and academics from Europe and South America who undertook research into predicting risk of depression. The study was led by Professors Michael King and Irwin Nazareth in the Research Departments of Mental Health Sciences and Primary Care and Population Health at University College London, and was funded principally by a grant from the Vth Framework of the European Commission’s Scientific Research Programme.
The algorithm has been tested on 6000 patients in Great Britain, Spain, Portugal, the Netherlands, Slovenia and Estonia during regular visits to their GP’s . Since Finland was not one of the options, I entered Estonia as my country of residence. It is geographically closest to me and culturally much closer than my actual country of residence.
This is what I learned about my present condition. (I did actually not learn anything, let us say that the test confirmed what I already knew.)
And this is my prediction for the next 12 months.
Not worried at all.
China is to become the first country in the World where Internet addiction is officially defined as a disease. According to China Daily, doctors at Beijing’s Military General Hospital have developed a definition of Internet addiction:
Symptoms of addiction included yearning to get back online, mental or physical distress, irritation and difficulty concentrating or sleeping.
The definition, based on a study of more than 1,300 problematic computer users, classifies as addicts those who spend at least six hours online a day and have shown at least one symptom in the past three months.
That set of symptoms could apply to every serious web user since anybody spending less than six hours a day online could best be described as an Internet analphabet. And each of the symptoms, apart from “yearning to get back online”, could very well be related to a number of offline activities as well. If you are irritated of your S.O is it because they interfere with your online activities or just because your S.O is a S.O.B?
Anyway, I am grateful that the good doctors at Beijing’s Military General Hospital reminded me to get a new chair so that the occasional physical distress in my back would not classify me as an Internet addict.
Tags: alzheimer's, dementia, margaret thatcher
Carol Thatcher describes how she detected that her mother, former British PM Margaret Thatcher has a dementia. I have a very personal reason to express my sympathy to Ms Thatcher: my mother, who is just three years younger than Margaret Thatcher, had similar symptoms approximately at the same time and was eventually diagnosed with Alzheimer’s. Alzheimer’s decease is the most common reason for dementia.
As a comfort to Carol Thatcher, as well as for myself, I can say that while watching our beloved ones suffer dementia is a very painful experience, the patients themselves tend to feel happy about their general condition. Although it will not help Mrs. Thatcher or my mother, I hope that stem cell research and other medical research are eventually going to discover a cure for dementia. Taking in consideration that a large part of the World’s population is aging rapidly, a breakthrough would bring releaf for billions of people allover the World.
Tags: breast cancer, christina appelgate
Tags: peter roskothen
My good colleague and co-author of Blogwatch.eu, Peter Roskothen has spent the last couple of weeks with his hand plastered in a gypsum. He has broken a knuckle and the gypsum needs to stay for another few weeks.
So Peter needs to take it easy for a while. My wishes of a speedy recovery are being supported by this brief message:
When your feeling has been outright lousy the last few days, when you have a moderate fever and when your hands are shaking to make it almost impossible for the fingers to hit laptop keys (at least the intended ones), writing a blog post is not the first of your priorities. Then again, if you have taken a commitment to make a post every Saturday in Blogwatch.eu you just struggle it through.
Luckily, my research was done good time in advance this week and Roer.Com Information Security is by all means a familiar blog for me. So all I needed to take care of was to make my fingers land on the right keys. It was not easy but I made it!
My fever is a bit lower by now but the fingers still tend to hit wrong keys.
This video goes to show that you often need to be funny if you want to make a serious point. Is there a better way of saying that working with a HIV positive person is not a big deal?
Tags: addiction, games, mental
This video features an addicted kid trying to access a web game. I think it is definitely an understatement to entitle the clip Angry German Kid. If he is acting as suggested in some comments the performance should be nominated for a Tube Oscar.
I do not think it matters much whether this particular kid is acting or if he genuinely has a serious mental problem. The point is that there are people allover with a mental handicap. But as Farlion wrote for a few months ago, banning the killer games, as suggested by prominent politicians in Germany, is not a solution because what we are looking at is not the cause of the problem but a consequence.
I am drinking beer for medical purposes on kind advice of a general physician.
Tags: George W Bush, science
The USSR used to be criticized for ignoring scientific results which did not fit in to their political goals. The same dogmatic approach to science is being demonstrated by the present US administration. Featuring the well known connection between poverty and bad health is not “kosher” to the US government.
The Washington Post reports:
A surgeon general’s report in 2006 that called on Americans to help tackle global health problems has been kept from the public by a Bush political appointee without any background or expertise in medicine or public health, chiefly because the report did not promote the administration’s policy accomplishments, according to current and former public health officials.
The report described the link between poverty and poor health, urged the U.S. government to help combat widespread diseases as a key aim of its foreign policy, and called on corporations to help improve health conditions in the countries where they operate. A copy of the report was obtained by The Washington Post.
Fortunately, though the scientific analphabet has less than 18 months to serve.
Health officials in Nova Scotia are concerned for the risk of mumps epidemics, especially among young adults. An outbreak in Halifax made almost 450 people sick for five months ago. Dr. Noni MacDonald, a pediatric infectious disease specialist, has come up with an unconventional idea, according to the CBC:
For example, she said, it might help if young people at bars are offered a vaccine with their beer.
“Maybe what you could do is say if you go to the bar between 5 and 7, you could get your beer half price if you get your measles, mumps, rubella immunization updated,” MacDonald said.
This sounds almost too good to be true. A government sponsored happy hour, all in the interest of public health. And finally a doctor who is honest enough to admit that drinking beer is good for your health.
According to a study published by Archives of Internal Medicine, surprisingly many doctors tend to talk about themselves rather than focus on their patient during primary care visits. In many cases the self-disclosures have little or no relevance in attending the patient’s problem. The study concludes:
Practicing primary care physicians disclosed information about themselves or their families in 34% of new visits with unannounced, undetected, standardized patients. There was no evidence of positive effect of MD-SDs; some appeared disruptive. Primary care physicians should consider when self-disclosing whether other behaviors such as empathy might accomplish their goals more effectively.
Dr. Susan H. McDaniel, lead author of the study, comments in New York Times:
“I think all of us on the team thought self-disclosure is a potentially positive aspect to building a doctor-patient relationship and that we ourselves were quite good at it,” said Susan H. McDaniel, a psychologist who is associate chairwoman of the department of family medicine at the University of Rochester and lead author of the study.
“We were quite shocked,” Dr. McDaniel added. “We realized that maybe not 100 percent of the time, but most of the time self-disclosure had more to do with us than with the patients.”
So next time I need non urgent medical attention, maybe I should fly to America. That way I could charge the chatty doc for taking care of his/her problem rather than paying myself.
Tags: April Fools
Peter writes about a fresh EU proposal to ban smoking while using a computer. An alternative approach could be banning sales of used computers. The ban is to ensure that no harmful particles in tobacco smoke would be layered on the inner surfaces of a computer and blown by the ventilator and breathed in by a non smoker who bought the computer as used.
As reported by several reliable blogs, the smoking ban has been prepared in secret and it took effect at midnight GMT today 1st April 2007. The chief of EU commission’s press and disinformation service, Ms. April Lügnerin, confirms that the pan European smoking ban was debated by the European Parliament in a closed session yesterday. As of today, smoking is prohibited in all spaces with a functioning computer.
If there is a computer in at least one flat of a housing unit, smoking is banned in all apartments. It is also not allowed to puff on balcony or yard because smoke could very well flow in to a flat with computer through an open window. To prevent infecting computers through breath, a smoker is not allowed to approach a building with one or more computers two hours after smoking.
The owner of a computer is under obligation to report possession of a computer to the landlord who must immediately declare the building as a smoke free zone. Municipal governments must hire breath sniffers to enforce the smoking ban. A sniffer is entitled to authorize a blood proof be administered to a person approaching a building with one or more computers to conclude if the person has smoked within two hours.
Violations against the smoking and approaching ban carry a fine of 1000€. The offender also has to compensate the cost of replacing all computers in the building.