Medi-snippets: Imported milk powder safe | Sunday Observer

Medi-snippets: Imported milk powder safe

17 February, 2019

As controversy swirls over the quality of imported milk powder and rumours of it being adulterated, the Health Ministry has issued a statement that tests done on imported milk powders have proved that the milk is completely safe and free of adulteration with vegetable fat or any other ingredient. Acting Director General of Health Services, Dr S. C. Wickramasinghe reportedly said that the pre-shipment testing of the exporting country and all other tests done in Sri Lanka at the Sri Lanka Standards Institute ( SLSI), Sri Lanka Atomic Energy Board, Food Laborataries of the Ministry of Health and Industrial Technology Institute ( ITI) have confirmed this. For more information they should contact then Director of the Environmental and Occupational Health on 0714429793, he said.

Cancer drugs shortage will be resolved within this month

Replying to news reports which state that state run hospitals are currently facing a shortage in cancer drugs, quoting officials from the Medical Supplies Division( MSD) of the Health Ministry and the State Pharmaceutical Corporation as well as Apekksha Hospital officials, Health Minister Dr Rajitha Senaratne has promised to solve the problem within the next fortnight and ensure a continuous flow of quality drugs and other medical accessories to all main state hospitals in the Provinces including Jaffna, and urban and main hospitals in Colombo, at reduced prices.

Allogeneic Bone Marrow transplants in S.L this year

Allogeneic bone marrow transplant surgeries will commence at the Maharagama Apeksha Hospital ( National Cancer Institute) this year. In this surgery the bone marrow is obtained from a donor, Health Ministry sources were quoted as saying . A special discussion was held at the Health Ministry recently under the patronage of Minister Dr Rajitha Senaratne in connection with launching the surgery.

The Minister was quoted as saying that proper training had already been given to four consultants , five doctors, five nurses and two medical laboratory assistants at St . Vincent’s Hospital, Australia. The surgery will commence soon after Apeksha Hospital acquires the facilities requested by the doctors to increase the number of rooms allocated for patients who are on the waiting list for surgery. At present only two rooms are available and the request is to increase this number to eight, the Minister was quoted as saying.

Hospital sources were quoted as saying that so far the Hospital has performed 50 Autologous Bone Marrow Transplant surgeries ( using self donated bone marrow). They said that the team of Oncologists at Apeksha Hospital were now ready to perform the surgeries, to give those patients a new lease of life.

Health Ministry calls for vigilance in face cream and hair dye use

Health Ministry officials have once again warned the public to refrain from using face and skin creams that claim to make one fair, and hair dyes that do not carry registrations marks of the Sri Lanka Standards Institute Bureau. They warned that the creams could cause allergies, skin irritations and in the long run, cancer as they contained carcinogenic ingredients.

Johnson’s baby powder imports halted

The Health Ministry has reportedly halted all imports of the popular baby talc Johnson’s baby powder following reports that the powder contained certain harmful ingredients. The importing company has been informed that there would be no more imports of the baby talcum powder till it was proved that the product was free from cancer causing asbestos, Sri Lanka’s National Medicine Regulatory Authority Chief Executive, Kamal Jayasinghe was quoted as saying.

Dengue cases drop but rains could lead to spike

A seven percent decrease in the number of dengue cases and ninety percent decrease in the number of dengue deaths were reported last year according to the latest statistics of the Ministry of Health. Health Ministry sources were quoted as saying that studies conducted so far had revealed that 30 percent of the total number of dengue patients were schoolchildren.

The prevalence of Dengue can go up again with the ongoing rains and therefore, the public should be vigilant of all possible places where water collects and stagnates . Heath officials have requested the public to spend at least 30 minutes a week to clean mosquito breeding sites noting that even a pen clip or a bottle top was adequate for a dengue mosquito to breed.

Health Ministry sources said they had conducted a successful islandwide campaign to control dengue providing the human resources, including field assistants, well trained health professionals, etc.

They said special programs had been launched with the Education and Megapolis Ministers as well as the Western Development Ministry to curb dengue. In addition, a special App had been introduced for parents to obtain information on dengue .

Meanwhile Epidemiology Unit sources have said that a total of 619 suspected dengue cases had been reported from all parts of the country since February 8, the highest number being from the Colombo district with 1,457 and second highest number, 1,053 in the Jaffna district.

Dengue outbreaks increase in certain areas

Dikwella Medical Officer of Health, Dr Indika Senanayake was quoted recently as warning people to be vigilant of dengue in their areas following the discovery of positive dengue patients in the surrounding areas.

He reportedly said that 25 dengue patients had been identified in the past 22 days . Most of them had been reported from Nilwella and Dodamphala. Children in nine schools had been educated about dengue symptoms and anti dengue programs launched in Dikwella,Yonakapura, Nilwella. Thennahena and Belikatuwella. Another dengue outbreak is likely in the Kaduwella fisheries harbour area, health authorities have reportedly said, charging that abandoned fishing craft, clogged drains, uncovered pits and garbage piles were responsible for attracting the dengue carrying vector.