Month: February 2024

King promises dozens more long-term care beds before end of March

Health care was at the centre of P.E.I. Premier Dennis King’s state of the province address Monday evening, and it included a promise to move long-term care patients out of hospitals and into more appropriate beds.

King, as is customary on the Island, made his address to the Rotary Club.

The premier started his address with an acknowledgement that the province had been through a difficult time in the pandemic, and he included himself in that. The Dennis King of 2024 is still feeling the impact of pandemic isolation, he said, and public speaking does not come as easily to him as it did in 2019.

“Enduring what we have endured has changed us,” King said.

P.E.I. premier on coming out of the pandemic

In his state-of-the-province address, Premier Dennis King says there is no going back to normal.

“It’s important to recognize those feelings you have, that sense of worry, that sense of angst, that apprehension. It’s not just you. It’s the person beside you, it’s the person in front of you, it’s the person behind you.”

1,000 Islanders to come off patient registry

Having said that, King went on to outline ways in which the province has come out of the pandemic well, with strong economic growth.

And he talked at length about health care.

The system needs to change, he said, and that change can be slow. But after five years in power, he said the investments his government is making are beginning to pay off.

He announced that after more than a decade of watching the number of Islanders without access to primary care — to a family physician or nurse practitioner — grow, that number would fall in February.

“About 1,000 Islanders will come off the patient registry this month. This month, February 2024, will

Changes needed to ensure safer, more resilient RCMP, union mental-health report says

OTTAWA — The union representing front-line Mounties is urging the RCMP to move beyond “patchwork solutions” to ensure the mental health of officers amid concerns they face increasing risks to their well-being.

In a new report, the National Police Federation calls on the RCMP to fully implement its employee well-being strategy, institute regular psychological health screening and make it simpler to access mental-health supports.

The federation released the report, Behind the Badge, at a breakfast meeting in Ottawa on Tuesday.

The report says RCMP members are confronted daily with a myriad of stressors, risks and emotionally taxing situations that invariably take a toll on their psychological health.

It highlights the fact the very nature of their profession exposes them to violence, trauma, high-pressure situations and a relentless demand for vigilance.

The report says this is compounded by everyday sources of stress, such as negative comments from the public, fatigue, staff shortages, lack of resources and bureaucratic red tape. 

RCMP officers face stigma related to psychological health issues and a lack of comprehensive and accessible mental-health services and supports, the report adds.

Over time, these factors have been shown to accumulate and lead to an array of mental-health challenges — from post-traumatic stress disorder and depression to anxiety and a heightened risk of suicidal behaviour, it says.

“The urgent need for increased government investment in mental-health guidance, training, and treatment programs for police officers, especially within the RCMP, is paramount.”

The report includes the results of a survey by the federation and the University of Regina of a representative sample of RCMP members from June 2022 to February 2023.

It found members were six times as likely as the general population to screen positive for any mental-health disorder. Such figures are considered indicators, not actual diagnoses that require clinical interviews with

Healthcare Chatbots Market Leveraging AI for Patient-Centric Care and Future Growth in Telemedicine Adoption to Exceed USD 1369.3 Million by 2034, with CAGR of 18.30% – By PMI

PMI

PMI

“Healthcare Chatbots Market” from 2024-2034 with covered segments (Healthcare Chatbots Market, By Deployment Model (Cloud – Based and On- Premise), By Component (Service, and Software), By Application (Symptom Checking, Medication Assistance, Appointment Scheduling, and Medical Guidance), By End User (Patient, Healthcare Providers, and Insurance Companies), and Regional Forecast, 2024-2034), which provides the perfect mix of market strategies, and industrial expertise with new cutting-edge technology to give the best experience.

Covina, Feb. 26, 2024 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — “According to the recent research study, the Healthcare Chatbots Market size was valued at about USD 255.4 Million in 2024 and expected to grow at CAGR of 18.30% to extend a value of USD 1369.3 Million by 2034.”

What is Healthcare Chatbots?

Market Overview:

Healthcare chatbots are artificial intelligence (AI) programs designed to interact with users in a conversational manner to provide healthcare-related information, support, or services. These chatbots are often integrated into websites, mobile applications, or messaging platforms to offer users a convenient way to access healthcare resources and assistance.

Healthcare chatbots can perform various functions like:

  • They can provide users with general information about symptoms, medical conditions, medications, and treatments.

  • Chatbots can help users assess their symptoms and provide recommendations for next steps, such as self-care measures or seeking medical attention.

  • Many healthcare chatbots allow users to schedule appointments with healthcare providers or find nearby clinics based on their location and medical needs.

  • They can send medication reminders and help users manage their medication schedules to improve adherence to treatment plans.

  • Some chatbots are equipped to monitor users health metrics, such as blood pressure, blood sugar levels, or activity levels, and provide personalized recommendations based on the data collected.

  • Healthcare chatbots offers mental health support by providing coping strategies, mindfulness exercises or connecting users with mental health professionals if needed.

  • They

DOJ: D.C. police response to 911 calls may violate rights of mentally ill

The D.C. government may be violating federal disability law by sending police officers rather than trained mental health responders to deal with 911 calls for psychiatric emergencies, the Justice Department said this week, bolstering a lawsuit against the city brought by local nonprofits.

“Relying on a less effective, potentially harmful response … may deprive people with mental health disabilities of an equal opportunity to benefit from a critical public service,” Assistant Attorney General Kristen Clarke of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division said in a statement Thursday. “People with mental health disabilities must have an equal opportunity to benefit from a city’s emergency response system.”

The intervention puts the federal government, which handles prosecutions in D.C., in the middle of a long-running local and national effort to deal more effectively with psychiatric emergencies, particularly as the homeless population grows.

“The Department of Justice has been concerned nationwide about egregious violations of the rights of people with disabilities due to local governments’ failure to ensure that a mental health crisis receives a mental health response,” said Michael Perloff, an attorney with the American Civil Liberties Union of D.C., which along with Bread for the City sued D.C. in July. “Those exact issues are going on in the District of Columbia.”

Bread for the City, a local institution that offers food, health care, clothing and other essentials to people in need, said its resources are being drained by dealing with frequent psychological crises because calling 911 is “ineffective and harmful.” The city has mental health clinicians and certified peer support specialists, according to the lawsuit, but “has failed to provide sufficient funding, training, or coordination to adequately staff and support these teams.” The homeless population in D.C. has been increasing, as has demand for mental health crisis support.

In 2021, D.C. started

At London Fashion Week, New Ideas for Grown-Up Clothes

Two weeks into fashion month, some themes are emerging. In New York, designers propositioned us to think differently about the classics, taking ladylike separates and twerking them into something much more indicative of how women want to and need to dress today. Many brands also began to look inward and do away with over-marketed ideas of nostalgia and fantasy, providing a fresh, self-expressive sartorial palette. Designers at London Fashion Week, which celebrates its 40th anniversary this season, are steering us in these converging directions, too, with the best of them challenging us to ask: What does it mean to make grown-up clothes in 2024?

Rebelliousness has always been at the core of British fashion. Think of Mary Quant giving us mod mini-skirts, Vivienne Westwood defining what it meant to be a punk, or Lee McQueen using oft-controversial storylines to present exquisite, boundary-breaking clothes. On the other side, there’s also Saville Row tailoring and strict tweeds and tartans, long favored by the monarchy and the elite tiers of high society. London Fashion Week has thus always had a bit of a split personality—one similar to New York, where the underground and overground are two very separate entities. But now, a middle ground is emerging in both cities, and in London, it’s manifesting in designs that amalgamate sophistication with subversion.

london, england february 16 a model walks the runway at the tolu coker show during london fashion week february 2024 at the bfc newgen show space on february 16, 2024 in london, england photo by joe maherbfcgetty images

Tolu Coker opened the week with one of the most exciting takes. The young designer’s collection was inspired by her mother and the street hawkers in their native Ghana. Suiting was cut in varying proportions, and shirting was cut into long dresses with exaggerated collars and corseted waists, the likes of which could be worn by any number of people who aren’t in the market for a simple cotton poplin shirt dress or a standard-cut boring blazer. The clothes were inspired by

Family says inadequate health care led to death of young Nanaimo woman

‘The system is failing and it failed Sophia’ — Paul Manly, the executive-director of the Nanaimo Unitarian Shelter where Sophia worked before she died

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Health officials on Vancouver Island are investigating the care provided to a 23-year-old Nanaimo woman who died of an untreated infection, a death her mother said was “entirely preventable.”

Sophia died on Nov. 27 at St. Paul’s Hospital in Vancouver after she contracted sepsis from an infection that was repeatedly misdiagnosed.

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“I never thought in my wildest dreams I (would be) leaving the hospital without her,” said her mother, Melonie, who asked that their last names not be used for privacy reasons.

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The potential and pitfalls of diagnosis by app

If health is a fundamental human right, health-care delivery must be improved globally to achieve universal access. However, the limited number of practitioners creates a barrier for all health-care systems.

Approaches to health-care delivery driven by artificial intelligence (AI) are poised to fill this gap. Whether in urban hospitals or in rural and remote homes, AI has the reach that health-care professionals cannot hope to achieve. People seeking health information can obtain it quickly and conveniently. For health care to be effective, patient safety must remain a priority.

The news is filled with examples of novel applications of AI. Riding the wave of recent interest in conversational agents, Google researchers have developed an experimental diagnostic AI, Articulate Medical Intelligence Explorer (AMIE). People seeking health information provide their symptoms through a text-chat interface and AMIE begins to ask questions and provide recommendations as a human clinician might. The researchers claim that, when compared against clinicians, AMIE outperformed clinicians in both diagnostic accuracy and performance.

Text bubbles in chat.
AMIE dialogue.
(Google)

The potential of large language models (LLMs) like AMIE are clear. By being trained on a large database of text, LLM can generate text, identify the underlying meaning, and respond in a human-like manner. Provided patients have access to the internet, health advice could be tailored to the patient, provided quickly and easily, and allowing for triage of cases that are best handled by human health-care professionals.

But these tools are still in the experimental stages and have limitations. AMIE researchers say further study is needed to “envision a future in which conversational, empathic and diagnostic AI systems might become safe, helpful and accessible.”

Precautions must be taken. Health-care delivery is a complicated task. Left unregulated — professionally or internationally — it presents challenges to quality of care, privacy

Millie Mackintosh in Workout Gear Shares Expert Health Advice  — Celebwell

Made In Chelsea star Millie Mackintosh is sharing the health and fitness tips and tricks that she swears by these days. Mackintosh, 34, posted a picture of herself doing a yoga pose in black leggings and a bright sweatshirt, giving fans some insight into her favorite takeaways from Mel Robbins’ podcast. “@drgabriellelyon tells us eating more protein and doing strength exercises are key for staying healthy as we age. I eat protein with every meal and strength train 3-4 times per week, and I’ve noticed a significant improvement in my overall health and muscle gains compared to before I had children,” she captioned the post. Here’s how Mackintosh stays fit and strong.

Mackintosh enjoys working out alone and with her family. “I do a mixture of Pilates and yoga and sometimes weight training,” she told Your Healthy Living. “I also practice mindfulness and meditation every morning. My older daughter likes to join in. She’ll come and sit next to me and she likes to copy me but she instantly gets the giggles so it can be a bit distracting! At the weekends we all go to the park and go on walks together. That’s something that I did a lot in my childhood with my parents. I think getting fresh air and daylight is really helpful and important for our immunity as well as our mental health.”

Mackintosh loves making roast chicken at home with her family. “I eat a Paleo-style diet that’s protein-focused, though I’m not super rigid with rules,” she told Women’s Health. “I’m focused on maintaining gut health, rather than fixing it, so I think a lot about what foods do for my body, the properties of what I’m eating and how I’ll feel afterwards. In the week, I batch cook lunches, prepping a carb,

Measles vaccinations should be current: B.C. Health Ministry


B.C. residents heading out of town for spring break next month are being urged to confirm their measles vaccination status as outbreaks of the disease are being reported in other parts of the world.


B.C.’s Health Ministry echoed warnings issued by the Public Health Agency of Canada Friday, saying the upcoming travel season combined with a decline in protection against measles could increase local cases. Travellers are encouraged to plan ahead, as it takes a couple weeks to be fully protected after getting the vaccine. 


“I strongly advise everyone in Canada to be vaccinated with two doses of a measles vaccine, especially before travelling,” Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Theresa Tam said in a statement.


“If needed, measles vaccination should optimally be given at least two weeks before departure, but there are still benefits if given less than two weeks before travelling.”


B.C.’s Health Ministry confirmed with CTV News Vancouver that no cases of the measles have been reported in the province since 2019, when 31 were recorded. That year, several cases in the province were linked to travel from the Philippines and Vietnam, where large outbreaks were happening at the time. Other cases were linked to travel from the United States. Just under half of the 2019 cases were among youth aged 19 and younger.


PHAC said it’s aware of six cases in the country so far this year, adding most of them “involve unvaccinated or under-vaccinated children who travelled internationally.”


Globally, however, cases are on the rise. The World Health Organization reported a 79-per-cent increase in cases in 2023, compared to 2022. PHAC said there has been a “notable recent increase” in cases in Europe.


Protection against the measles


Adults and children who have received two doses of

Will sustainability become fashionable in 2024?

Vestiaire’s ban on fast fashion brands being sold on its platform is a three-year plan. This activation marks the plan’s second year. Following the first year, the brand saw that 70% of its members who were impacted by the ban still returned to the platform.

Together, Vestiaire Collective and 9 fashion and sustainability experts identified traits of fast fashion brands. They used these to create a solid classification framework for the ban. The framework focused on five key criteria points. The first being the low price point of goods, the second the Intense renewal rate of collections or items dropped per year. The third was cited as being a wide product range. The fourth and fifth focused on the speed to market and the frequency of sales.

Underlying the need for the ban, Douina Wone, Chief Impact Officer for Vestiaire Collective, explained: “Fast fashion brands contribute to excessive production and consumption, resulting in devastating social and environmental consequences in the Global South. It is our duty to act and lead the way for other industry players to join us in this movement, and together we can have an impact”.

The campaign was launched in time for 2023’s Black Friday, aiming to encourage consumers to think carefully about their spending decisions at a time that values overconsumption of fast fashion. 

Creating new with sustainability in mind 

Kicking off 2024, luxury designer brand, Miu Miu echoed sustainable sentiments. Back in 2020, the brand devised its first Upcycled collection to promote vintage clothing and circular production practices. In January, the brand – sister to Prada – launched its latest instalment of the Upcycled collections, in the form of denim and patch bags. The activation occurred across social and brand platforms and focused on creating newness with care and history in mind.

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