In a world first, Singapore’s highest court rules that parents deserve kids with their genes

The Conversation, 3 April 2017
Author: G. Owen Schaefer
“Blood is thicker than water, or so the saying goes, reflecting the value we put on biological relationships. But is it something the law should recognise? Singapore’s Supreme Court recently ruled on a case that asks this very question, and it gave a fascinating answer: parents have a strong interest in “genetic affinity” with their children, one that can merit compensation if subverted.”
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26 years ago the UK signed up to formula milk advertising rules – so why isn’t it law yet?

The Conversation, 22 March 2017
Author: Aimee Grant
“Like the topic of infant feeding itself, public health bills can be a minefield. Ask any mum or dad and they will tell you that parenting media in the UK is flooded with potentially misleading advertising for certain formula products. Although, NHS tells mothers that babies who are fed first infant formula need nothing more than that, there is still a wide range of “follow on” formulas available for babies over six months old. So why do manufacturers make these products, and advertise their “health benefits” if children don’t need them?”
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Regulator grants license for Britain’s first three-parent IVF babies

Reuters, 16 March 2017
Author: Kate Kelland
“Britain’s fertility regulator on Thursday granted doctors the first UK license to create babies using a three-parent IVF technique designed to prevent inherited genetic diseases. The license, granted to a team of doctors in Newcastle, northern England, means the first child created in Britain using the mitochondrial pronuclear transfer technique could be born before the end of this year.”
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Banning unvaccinated kids from child care may have unforeseen consequences

The Conversation, 14 March 2017
Author: C Raina MacIntyre
“The federal government’s push for all state and territories to ban unvaccinated children from child care is a coercive measure that may disadvantage working parents and their children, and may have other unintended consequences. The much discussed “No Jab No Pay” policy makes vaccination a condition for receiving certain government benefits and subsidies. But there is no evidence that banning unvaccinated children from child care will be any better than excluding them temporarily during an outbreak, which already occurs.”
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Push for unity on vaccination laws is just common sense

The Canberra Times, 13 March 2017
Author: David Ellery
“Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull’s call for all states and territories to adopt a uniform stance on barring unvaccinated? children from childcare and preschool facilities makes a great deal of sense. Under current legislation unvaccinated? children in the ACT, along with those in South Australia, Western Australia, Tasmania and the Northern Territory, can be enrolled at these centres.”
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Australians’ attitudes to vaccination are more complex than a simple ‘pro’ or ‘anti’ label

The Conversation, 9 March 2017
Authors: Julie Leask, Margie Danchin and Nina J Berry
“Reading the headlines, it would be easy to believe childhood vaccination rates are declining in Australia, due to an increasing trend towards distrust of vaccines among parents. In fact, vaccination rates in Australia have been high and stable, hovering between 91% and 93% since 2003. Among the 7% of children who are not or not fully vaccinated across Australia, more than half have been prevented from accessing vaccination by some practical barrier. Although the numbers are small, there are good reasons to be concerned about parents who don’t vaccinate their children, or who delay getting their children’s vaccinations.”
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Pediatric Drug Formulations — Unintended Consequences of Legislation

N Engl J Med 2017; 376:795-796
Authors: Luke A. Probst, Thomas R. Welch
“The media have been replete with reports of ways in which the pharmaceutical industry has been able to increase revenue from medications that have been available for decades. We report a new variation of particular consequence to pediatricians and children.”
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