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March 2016

23Mar 2016

London Ambulance Service Demonstrates Pit Crew CPR

Inspired by Formula One racing, the pit crew concept is designed to bring increased efficiency and structure to the way the London Ambulance Service treats patients in cardiac arrest.

Each member of the team knows exactly what to do, when to do it and how to do it.

Key aspects of the pit crew concept include:

  • Ensuring there is 360º access to the patient (this may involve physically moving the patient a short distance);
  • Calm and concise communication at all times;
  • Use of a cardiac arrest checklist;
  • Identifying a team leader to manage the cardiac arrest team;
  • Members of the team adopting predefined positions around the patient in order to deliver different elements of resuscitation efficiently and effectively.
10Mar 2016

“How are you Shropshire?”: new campaign launches to help double chances of being healthy at 70 and beyond

News from Shropshire Council


On 7th March, Shropshire Council’s public health team helped to launch the national One You campaign, to support adults across the county to stay well for as long as possible.

The new groundbreaking campaign, led by Public Health England, aims to help adults across the country avoid future diseases caused by modern lifestyles. The campaign will also help adults in Shropshire to move more, eat well, drink less and be smoke free, as well as providing information on how people can reduce their stress levels and sleep better.

Shropshire figures* show:

  • In 2014, 24 % of people over 16 were classed as physically inactive.
  • 65% of adults (over 16yrs) were classified as overweight or obese (2012 to 2014 data)
  • In 2013 there were 1,992 hospital admissions for alcohol-related conditions and 139 alcohol-related mortality cases reported in 2014.
  • In 2014 there was a 15.3 % prevalence of smoking among people aged 18 years and over; current smokers.
  • Between 2012 to 2014 there were 489 accounts of mortality from lung cancer.
  • During 2014/15 it was estimated that there were around 3,005 accounts of smoking-attributable admissions (people 35+ yrs).
  • Between 2012 to 14 it was estimated there was 1568 accounts of deaths attributable to smoking (people 35+ yrs).

Modern day life makes it hard for people to live healthily, with bigger portions for everything we eat, a desk-bound job or a long commute. Without knowing it, by the time we reach our 40s and 50s many of us will have dramatically increased our chances of becoming ill later in life. Whether we are eating the wrong things, drinking more alcohol than we should, continuing to smoke, or just not being active enough, all of these things add up.

These habits could make it harder to keep up with the kids in the park or mean that your favourite pair of jeans are a bit tighter. More seriously, they increase the risk of you developing conditions such as type 2 diabetes, cancer and heart disease.

One You gives people the chance to reappraise their lifestyle choices, put themselves first and do something about their own health before it’s too late.

A good way to start the fight to healthy is to take the new free One You health quiz, “How Are You?”. This innovative quiz provides personalised recommendations based on your results, and direct you to tools and offers to help you take action where it’s most needed.

Karen Calder, Shropshire Council’s Cabinet member for health and well-being, and Chair of Shropshire’s Health and Well-being Board, said:

One You encourages people to reappraise their lifestyle choices, put themselves first and do something about their own health. It reminds people that it’s never too late to improve their health – making small lifestyle changes such as eating well, drinking less alcohol, quitting smoking or being more active can double your chances of being healthy at 70 and beyond.

Our busy lives often means that our own health is at the bottom of our list of priorities. One You is here to remind you that your health matters.

I can’t stress enough how important it is for us all to stop, pause and really ask yourself how am I? So please take the health test, find out how you really are, and do something about it, after all there is only one you.

Dr Kevin Lewis, Director of Help2Change, who provide health preventative services on behalf of Shropshire Council, added:

Help2Change offers a wide range of support services to help people lead healthier lives. These include NHS Health Checks, Help2Quit for smokers, Help2Slim for a healthy weight, information on physical activity opportunities, and alcohol advice.

The One You campaign is a great opportunity to improve your health. So if you’ve taken the How Are You? quiz and feel that you want to make some changes, please contact the Help2Change helpline on 0345 678 9025 or emailinformation@help2changeshropshire.nhs.uk

For more information about the One You campaign, and to take the online How Are You? health quiz, search ‘One You’ online now or click here.

There is a wealth of advice and information that can help people to improve their lifestyle behaviour on our Healthy Shropshire website. Information ranges from eating well and moving more to stopping smoking and drinking less.

For information on visit www.healthyshropshire.co.uk.

9Mar 2016

Peanut allergy theory backed up by new research

The effects of eating peanut products as a baby to avoid the risk of allergy have been backed up by new research.

In 2015, a study claimed early exposure to peanut products could cut the risk of allergy by 80%.

Now researchers say “long-lasting” allergy protection can be sustained – even when the snacks are later avoided for a year.

The New England Journal of Medicine study looked at 550 children deemed prone to developing a peanut allergy.

The latest paper builds on the results of the 2015 research, which was also carried out by King’s College London and marked the first time scientists were able to suggest that exposing children to small amounts of peanut snacks could stave off an allergy.

The new study suggests that if a child has consumed peanut snacks within the first 11 months of life, then at the age of five they can afford to stop eating the food entirely for a year, and maintain no allergy.

Lead author Prof Gideon Lack said: “[The research] clearly demonstrates that the majority of infants did in fact remain protected and that the protection was long-lasting.”

He said that part of the problem was that people lived in a “culture of food fear”.

“I believe that this fear of food allergy has become a self-fulfilling prophecy, because the food is excluded from the diet and, as a result, the child fails to develop tolerance,” he told the BBC News website.

The researchers used the same children who took part in the 2015 study – half of whom had been given peanut snacks as a baby while the remainder had been fed on a diet of breast milk alone.

Read full story: Peanut allergy theory backed up by new research

9Mar 2016

Business card shows ECG

A company that designs and sells clinical ECG’s has come up with a useful take on a business card.

MobileECG created a business card that is capable of measuring the users pulse by placing two fingers on small scanning pads on each side of the card.

The card is not intended to be used as a real diagnostic device, although according to a blog post on the company’s website, it accurately captures the P, Q,R, S and T waves of the ECG signal — Lead I.

MobileECG was founded in 2013 with the purpose of creating inexpensive and mobile ECG machines. The business card was designed to draw attention to the company’s main product, an ECG device that should cost roughly $150 when development is complete.

7Mar 2016

Data Protection Registration

The Data Protection Act 1998 requires every organisation that processes personal information to register with the Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO), unless they are exempt. Failure to do so is a criminal offence.

Since changing to a limited company, MedAid Services Ltd have re-registered under the limited company name and our new registration number is ZA170298.

Our register entry is as below:

Nature of work – Healthcare

Description of processing

The following is a broad description of the way this organisation/data controller processes personal information. To understand how your own personal information is processed you may need to refer to any personal communications you have received, check any privacy notices the organisation has provided or contact the organisation to ask about your personal circumstances.

Reasons/purposes for processing information

We process personal information to enable us to provide health services to our patients, to maintain our accounts and records, promote our services and to support and manage our employees.

Type/classes of information processed

We process information relevant to the above reasons/purposes. This information may include:

  • personal details
  • family details
  • lifestyle and social circumstances
  • goods and services
  • financial details
  • employment and education details

We also process sensitive classes of information that may include:

  • physical or mental health details
  • sexual life
  • racial or ethnic origin
  • trade union membership
  • religious or other beliefs of a similar nature
  • offences and alleged offences

Who the information is processed about

We process personal information about our:

  • patients
  • customers and clients
  • staff
  • suppliers
  • business contacts
  • professional advisers

Who the information may be shared with

We sometimes need to share the personal information we process with the individual themself and also with other organisations. Where this is necessary we are required to comply with all aspects of the Data Protection Act (DPA). What follows is a description of the types of organisations we may need to share some of the personal information we process with for one or more reasons.

Where necessary or required we share information with:

  • healthcare professionals
  • social and welfare organisations
  • central government
  • business associates
  • family, associates and representatives of the person whose personal data we are processing
  • suppliers and service providers;
  • financial organisations
  • current, past and prospective employers;
  • employment agencies and examining bodies

Consultancy and Advisory Services

Information is processed for consultancy and advisory services that are offered. For this reason the information processed may include name, contact details, family details, financial details, and the goods and services provided. This information may be about customers and clients. Where necessary this information is shared with the data subject themselves, business associates and other professional advisers, current, past or prospective employers and service providers.


It may sometimes be necessary to transfer personal information overseas. When this is needed information may be transferred to countries or territories around the world. Any transfers made will be in full compliance with all aspects of the data protection act.


3Mar 2016

Grey hair gene discovered by scientists

Scientists have pinpointed a gene responsible for grey hair – a discovery that could lead to new ways of delaying or preventing this natural sign of ageing, they say in Nature Communications.

Hair dyes can cover up greying but gene manipulation may, in future, banish it altogether.

The international team collected DNA samples from “a diverse melting pot” of more than 6,000 volunteers of European, Native American and African ancestry.

The gene IRF4 regulates a natural hair, skin and eye pigment called melanin.

It sits on chromosome six and while it is unlikely to be the only gene controlling greying, it provides a new target for researchers.

Lead author Dr Kaustubh Adhikari, from University College London, said: “We already know several genes involved in balding and hair colour but this is the first time a gene for greying has been identified in humans, as well as other genes influencing hair shape and density.

Read full story: Grey hair gene discovered by scientists

3Mar 2016

Moments of joy ‘can damage heart’

The emotional stress that causes chest pains and breathlessness can occur in moments of joy as well as anger, grief and fear, a Swiss study suggests.

Three-quarters of cases of takotsubo cardiomyopathy, a change in the shape of the heart’s left ventricle, which can be fatal, are caused by stress.

The University Hospital Zurich study, in the European Heart Journal, suggests about one in 20 cases is caused by joy.

The condition is normally temporary and people are generally fine afterwards.

In the study of 1,750 patients, researchers discovered heart problems caused by:

  • a birthday party
  • a son’s wedding
  • meeting a friend after 50 years
  • becoming a grandmother
  • a favourite rugby team winning a game
  • winning a casino jackpot
  • a computerised tomography (CT) scan giving the all-clear from another condition

The study also suggested most cases were in post-menopausal women.

Dr Jelena Ghadri, one of the researchers, said: “We have shown that the triggers for takotsubo syndrome can be more varied than previously thought.

A takotsubo syndrome patient is no longer the classic ‘broken-hearted’ patient, and the disease can be preceded by positive emotions too.

Clinicians should be aware of this and also consider that patients who arrive in the emergency department with signs of heart attacks, such as chest pain and breathlessness, but after a happy event or emotion, could be suffering from takotsubo syndrome just as much as a similar patient presenting after a negative emotional event.

Read full story: Moments of joy ‘can damage heart’