Materia Medica Malaysiana

December 31, 2005

Makna Sees Light At The End Of The Tunnel For Cancer Patients

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 5:48 am

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 30 (Bernama) — “There is hope”.
This was the confidence placed by National Cancer Council (Makna) president, Datuk Mohd Farid Ariffin that a cure for cancer could be found if western and eastern medication methods could be combined.
He said that Makna would allocate RM300 million for research and development (R&D) for the purpose over the next 15 years and which would include the construction of an R&D centre.
“We discovered that there are many secrets in the medication methods of the west and the east. I am seeing it with my own eyes as I read the records. There is much promise.
“I am confident that by marrying the occidental and oriental methods, one day we will find an effective antidote for cancer,” he told reporters after officiating the Ninth Periwinkle Day Celebrations 2005 at the Kuala Lumpur Tower here Friday.
Besides this, Farid said that Makna would also launch its mobile cancer screening programme which uses digital technology from district to district to detect the disease early among the people.
“I have discussed the matter with Health Minister Datuk Dr Chua Soi Lek who said his ministry might be able to help us in carrying out the exercise,” he said.
The programme to detect breast, cervix, prostate and bowel cancer and which costs RM3.3 million, would be launched in the middle of next year while screening for other types of cancer would be conducted later, Farid said.
Meanwhile, he said that Makna also hoped to collect 10 per cent or RM150 million from the RM1.5 billion of one sen coins in the market in the next five years through its “Sens Saves Lives” campaign to help cancer patients.
“So far we have succeeded in collecting 90 million pieces of coins of one cent and five cents denominations through the Education Ministry,” he said.
Makna which was formed in 1995 to help cancer patients in the country has so far provided aid to about 90,000 people afflicted by the deadly killer in terms of medication and finance.

December 30, 2005

Wijaya Baru Medical to invest up to RM5m to promote cancer treatment programme

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 9:52 am

The Edge: Wijaya Baru Global Bhd subsidiary Wijaya Baru Medical Sdn Bhd (WBMSB) will spend between RM2 million and RM5 million to promote its CyberKnife stereotactic radiosurgery treatment programme.
It expects to have 500 cancer patients under the programme next year.
Its deputy chief executive officer Faizal Abdullah said WBMSB’s Wijaya International Medical Centre in Petaling Jaya had treated up to 40 cancer patients since its inception in September.
“There are 40,000 people diagnosed with cancer every year and these people are going overseas for treatment. Our treatment is between 20% and 45% cheaper than overseas,” he told reporters after Wijaya Baru’s EGM in Petaling Jaya yesterday.
At the EGM, its shareholders approved the group’s proposed purchase of medical equipment for RM42.95 million cash. Faizal said the purchase would be funded via borrowings and advances from the group’s directors.
He said the company would see a return on the investment by 2008.
Faizal said the WBMSB would embark on a nationwide roadshow by the first quarter of next year and approach medical fraternities in the country to promote the company’s CyberKnife programme.
He said WBMSB would also participate in local and international medical exhibitions next year, starting with an exhibition in Dubai in January.

HIV screening a must in Kelantan

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 9:34 am

Star: KOTA BARU: Beginning this Sunday, all couples intending to get married in Kelantan must undergo HIV screening which, Mentri Besar Datuk Nik Abdul Aziz Nik Mat says, will save the family institution from being wrecked by AIDS.
“The move will also save innocent lives. It is very good, and Kelantan has no problem enforcing it together with other states,” he told reporters after launching the programme here yesterday.
In his speech earlier, Nik Aziz said 5,639 people tested positive for HIV in Kelantan from 1986 to 2004, mostly drug addicts. Some were infected through sex.
“It worries us when 64 housewives in Kelantan were found to be HIV positive last year,” he said.
He told reporters later that the mandatory HIV screening would not rid some people of perceptions that the state had failed to overcome the AIDS problem.
“The problem occurs anywhere and what happens here is because we are located next to Thailand,” he said.
Nik Aziz said it was impossible for the state government to stop its citizens from visiting other countries and be exposed to the disease.
It was important for society to abide by the command of God to stay away from committing sinful acts; and AIDS was actually a calamity brought upon those who had disobeyed, he said.
However, he was confident that one day, a cure for AIDS would be discovered.

PSD Yet To Receive Recommendation On Compulsory Psychiatric Test

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 9:32 am

PUTRAJAYA, Dec 29 (Bernama) — The Public Service Department (PSD) has yet to receive the Human Resource Ministry’s recommendation to make it mandatory for all government and private sector employees to undergo periodic psychiatric tests.
PSD Director-General, Datuk Seri Ismail Adam said that presently, heads of department could instruct their staff to go for such tests if they suspected subordinates to be involved in drugs.
“The mechanism is there and has been enforced but what was recommended by the deputy minister, we have not received,” he told reporters at the Putrajaya International Convention Centre here Thursday.
Ismail was commenting on a call by Deputy Human Resource Minister Datuk Abdul Rahman Bakar for all public and private sector employees to undergo psychiatric tests at least once a year beginning next year.
Abdul Rahman had said that all government employees would also have to go for blood and urine tests to identify those with HIV/Aids and drug users.
Ismail said that before implementing the recommendation, the government had to look at various matters including the cost involved, methodology and its reasonableness.

“We have about one million public employees in various sectors like defence, police, education, health and so on. Anything that involves the managing of conduct of civil servants should have a proper method of implementation.
“It needs to be discussed,” he said.
Earlier, Ismail presented accreditation certificates to 368 PSD officers from 12 ministries and four departments who underwent training to be counsellors.

December 29, 2005

Chua Warns Tea Producers Not To Add Colouring

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 8:03 pm

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 29 (Bernama) — The Health Ministry today reminded tea producers in this country not to add food colouring including permitted ones, into their products.
Its Minister Datuk Dr Chua Soi Lek said that such action was a form of cheating and the act of mixing colouring, including those permitted was an offence under the 1985 Food Regulations.
“Mixing with colouring (even if they are permitted food colourings) is an offence where if found guilty, is liable for a fine not more than RM20,000 or five years prison or both,” he said in a statement issued here Thursday.
Chua said that the public should be enjoying tea from the Camelia leaves as stipulated under the regulation.
“I hope that in 2006, consumers in Malaysia will no longer be exposed to tea mixed with colourings,” he added.
The reminder, said Chua, was in line with the memorandum sent to the Ministry by the Malaysian Tea Association, which among others touched on the act of mixing colouring into tea powder that had become rampant among some producers.
He also warned that the use of colouring in tea powder was one of the offences which the enforcement took stern action against through the 1983 Food Act.
Chua also advised consumers to be careful and to report to the State Health Department, District Health Office or the Health division under the local authorities if they suspected the tea they took had been added with colourings.
Consumers, he said, could conduct a simple test on tracing if the tea was added with colouring by putting the tea powder inside a clear glass containing pipe water at room temperature.
The water will change its colour if the tea is mixed with colouring, since the change in colour of the water is supposed to happen if the tea powder is placed in hot water.

Medical care not given as promised

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 9:38 am

NST: When Norizan Ismail was told she had contracted HIV through a blood transfusion at the Segamat District Hospital four years ago, she was promised the best medical care.
However, the housewife from Felda Palong Timur Satu here said today the promise was not kept.
She now tires easily and has severe skin problems with abscesses all over her body.
As a result, she cannot continue to work at an oil palm estate to help support her family.
“I wish the authorities would be more compassionate and responsible as they are the ones who caused my suffering,” she said.
“They apologised, admitted their mistake and even said that I could take the matter to court. They also promised me the best medical attention.”
Norizan, 44, had a blood transfusion after an emergency Caesarean section when she was seven months pregnant with her 11th child on July 17, 2001. She received 11 pints of blood.
She was in a coma for a week and her baby survived for only 18 days. She spent two months in hospital.
A year later, two health officers went to her home and took samples of her blood and her husband’s.
“They told us it was a routine health check,” Norizan recalled.
“After a month, they came for another sample and soon after, we received a letter asking us to meet health officers at Segamat Hospital.”
There, she received the devastating news.
“The health officer advised me against talking to families and friends because they might treat me as an outcast,” she said.
“They admitted that the 11th pint of blood was contaminated with the HIV virus and that I had contracted HIV through blood transfusion.
“They said it was up to me if I wanted to take the matter to court.”
She said her husband, Rosli Mansor, 48, had not contracted the disease.
Norizan and her husband sought a second opinion by sending a sample of her blood to a laboratory in Malacca. The second test confirmed her as HIV-positive.
Her battle as an HIV-positive person began with routine checks at Segamat Hospital, about 45km from her home.
Norizan said she had to submit to regular blood sampling procedures at 5am because the blood had to reach a laboratory in Johor Baru by 6.30am.
Early this year, her health deteriorated and she sought legal advice.
In Johor Baru, deputy state Health director Dr Daud Abdul Rahim said the hospital had carried out follow-up treatment for Norizan, including counselling.

100 Children Abused Daily

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 9:33 am

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 28 (Bernama) — About 100 children are abused in this country daily, said a consultant attached to the Kuala Lumpur Hospital.
Datuk Dr Abu Hassan Assari, who is also head of the hospital’s Emergency Department said the term “abused” here included physical, emotional and financial abuses.
He added that abused children also included those who were forced to work, did not receive protection and not properly looked after.
“According to a study by a non-government organisation called the All Women’s Action Movement (AWAM) most of the abused children also suffered from emotional and financial abuse besides physical abuse,” he told Bernama here Wednesday.
Based on the same study, four women were raped each day and some of them were under 15 years.
“The study also revealed that four women were molested and seven suffered sexual harassment a day.”
He however said the One Stop Crisis Centre (OSCC) formed in all government hospitals had been encouraging the abused women to come forward and expose their problems.
“The problem now is that many abused women are not willing to come forward with their problems.”
He said 104 OSCC throughout the country would be equipped with special equipment for determining abuse cases.
The equipment were effective and being used in many countries, he said.

“Mechanical Heart” Boy Undergoes First Biopsy

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 6:39 am

KUALA LUMPUR, Dec 28 (Bernama) — Muhammad Fikri Nor Azmi, 15, who underwent a heart transplant on Dec 15 to replace his mechanical heart, had his first biopsy, Wednesday.
National Heart Institute Clinical Director, Heart and Lung Transplant Programme, Dr Mohamed Ezani Mohamed Taib said the biopsy was a routine procedure after a heart transplant to check on the status of the new heart.
“He is progressing well and will be in the Intensive Care Unit for another one to two days before being discharged to the general ward,” he said in a statement, here Wednesday.
Muhammad Fikri was the first Malaysian to receive an Implantable Ventricular Assist Device (IVAD) or mechanical heart before he found a suitable donor for the heart transplant.
The IVAD is a temporary device that helps a defective heart by taking over most of its functions. It is connected to the ailing heart and helps reduce the strain on it.
Fikri who had the IVAD implant last July, underwent an operation to replace a faulty air-compressor line on the mechanical heart on Dec 7, after persistent air-pockets developed around it.

KPJ buys 60pc stake in Selangor Medical Centre

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 6:17 am

KPJ Healthcare Bhd, via its wholly-owned subsidiary Kumpulan Perubatan (Johor) Sdn Bhd, is buying 60 per cent of Selangor Medical Centre (SMC) for RM48 million.
In a statement to Bursa Malaysia yesterday, KPJ said the purchase is in line with the group’s objective to expand its network where private healthcare is in demand.
KPJ said the group is confident that prospects from the healthcare industry will remain promising based on the strong encouragement from the Government in promoting health tourism.
Incorporated in 1991, the medical centre, which is located in Shah Alam, had reported a RM2.22 million net profit on the back of a RM57.44 million revenue for its financial year ended December 31 2004.
To date, SMC has an authorised and issued share capital of RM50 million comprising 50 million shares and RM40 million comprising 40 million shares respectively.
The acquisition comprises 24 million ordinary shares of SMC at RM1 each from six vendors. (Business Times)

December 28, 2005

Flood Victims Inoculated Against Diseases

Filed under: Uncategorized — malaysianmedicine @ 8:39 pm

KOTA BAHARU, Dec 27 (Bernama) — The Health Ministry has taken measures to inoculate flood victims in Kedah and Perlis since the last four days against infectious diseases following floods in both states.
Health Director Datuk Dr Mohd Ismail Merican said the inoculation against hepatitis A, typhoid and others was carried out in certain affected areas after it was proposed by the Prime Minister.
“The preventive measure would continue… . Only that we have to be certain there is enough stock of vaccine for hepatitis A, typhoid and so on,” he told reporters after officiating the Kelantan Health Department’s 2005 Quality Day, here Tuesday.
On last Thursday (Dec 22), when visiting flood victims in Pasir Mas, Kelantan, Datuk Seri Abdullah Ahmad Badawi ordered the Health Ministry to take preventive measures against infectious diseases that often occurs after floods.
Mohd Ismail also stated that supplies of vaccine for the affected four states – Kedah, Perlis, Kelantan and Terengganu – is sufficient.
“Up to now we haven’t received any reports of insufficient vaccine supply in the respective states,” he said.
Mohd Ismail also said that no diseases were detected during the deluge but all health clinics and hospitals had been informed to be on alert on any epidemic.

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