This week, we bring practical recommendations for minimising COVID risks over summer, the latest news in global and public health, including staggering statistics from the United Nations showing the climate change is now displacing more people than conflict.
Also check out some interesting research publications and events not to miss in 2023.
As China battles the rapid spread of COVID, the implications for global health are enormous, including through the impact upon global supply chains.
Meanwhile, health and aged care services continue to be under strain in many countries.
The Australasian College for Emergency Medicine (ACEM), the College of Emergency Nursing Australasia (CENA) and the College of Emergency Nursing New Zealand (CENNZ – NZNO) have issued a joint statement, warning that emergency departments and health systems across both Aotearoa/New Zealand and Australia are under extreme pressure, often leading to long waits for healthcare.
Doctors and nurses across the two nations report that staff absences are the highest they have ever seen. Most EDs are consistently understaffed, with marked deficits in nursing – especially senior nursing. The Colleges warn that people seeking care for non-immediately life-threatening conditions will likely experience long waits.
In situations where alternatives for ED care are possible, the Colleges urge people with non-immediately life-threatening issues to consider other care pathways, such as GPs, urgent care centres, telephone helplines and pharmacies. They warn governments that situations in EDs will continue to decline without immediate and collaborative work to reimagine and resource the entire health system.
Meanwhile, OzSage has urged National Cabinet and the Albanese Government to reflect on the lessons learned from Christmas 2021, and to accept that relying on a vaccine-only strategy and mass infection is not working. Unless governments take steps to reduce community transmission of COVID-19, it will not be a merry Christmas or happy New Year for many Australians, they say.
“We need regulation of safe indoor air to protect workers and public, this will lower deaths and illness from Covid-19 and other airborne disease”, said Dr Karina Powers, Occupational and Environmental Physician.
The Burnet Institute has released clear messaging for how to reduce the risk of contracting COVID, noting that: “Despite the introduction of treatments, vaccine boosters and immunity from infection, 2022 has been the worst year of the pandemic in terms of the direct impacts – the numbers of people who have died, who have gotten sick and gone to hospital, people with long COVID and sustained pressure on the health system.”
Read the preliminary National Disability Research Partnership agenda. Read the article, ‘Social inequity and cancer’. Read the article, ‘The Queen died, colonisers cried & the walls came tumbling down’. Read the article, ‘Environmental sustainability in national food-based dietary guidelines: a global review’ Read the article, ‘Community lived experience should be central to food systems policy’
Read the article, ‘Global health nonsense’ Read the World Malaria Report 2022 See the List of Twitter listsRead the NPR article, ‘In the Southeast, power company money flows to news sites that attack their critics’
First Nations news
Awards, appointments and events
See previous editions. This column will return in 2023. Until then, best wishes.