Canadian mother whose son died from strep throat sentenced to three years in prison

BMJ 2017; 359: j5521
Author: Owen Dyer
“A mother from Calgary whose son died after she attempted to treat his strep throat at home with dandelion tea and oil of oregano has been sentenced to three years in prison for criminal negligence causing death. Tamara Lovett, 48, a believer in holistic medicine, did not call a doctor when her 7 year old son Ryan developed a throat infection, only calling an ambulance after two weeks of illness when she found him collapsed on the floor.”
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Slapping therapist accused of causing boy’s death said Western medicine was poison, court told

SMH, 4 October 2017
Author: Harriet Alexander
“A Chinese “self-healing promoter” accused of causing the death of a six-year-old boy allegedly described Western medicine as “poison” and encouraged diabetics to participate in slapping therapy instead of taking their insulin.”
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Homeopathy company investigated over ebook advocating treatment of babies

The Guardian, 30 June 2017
Author: Melissa Davey
“Australia’s drug regulator is investigating the promotion of an ebook that advocates homeopathic treatment for babies and toddlers, against all scientific evidence. Brauer, one of Australia’s largest homeopathy companies, promotes the Little Book of Natural Medicines for Children on its website. The book is available for download, and the website promotes the efficacy of homeopathic products. In 2015 the National Health and Medical Research Council reviewed 225 research papers on homeopathy and found it was not effective for treating any health condition.”
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Florida Cuts Telemedicine Out of New Medical Marijuana Law

mHealthIntelligence, 15 June 2017
Source: mHealthIntelligence
“Florida lawmakers have passed legislation that prevents doctors from using telemedicine to issue a prescription for medical marijuana. The rule requires that Sunshine State doctors who want to issue a medical marijuana prescription must first “(conduct) a physical examination while physically present in the same room as the patient and a full assessment of the medical history of the patient.” With some 29 states and Washington D.C. allowing medical marijuana, state officials are looking to control how the drug is prescribed and distributed, including through telehealth.”
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Man XXX Herbal capsules pose a serious risk

TGA, 12 May 2017
Source: TGA
“Man XXX Herbal capsules pose a serious risk to your health and should not be taken. The Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) has tested a product labelled Man XXX Herbal capsules and found that: the capsules contain the undeclared substance levodopa and consumers are advised that levodopa is a prescription-only substance in Australia. Man XXX Herbal capsules have not been assessed by the TGA for quality, safety or efficacy as required under Australian legislation, and the place of manufacture is not approved by the TGA. The investigations have shown that a number of people in Australia may have bought the product online.”
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Chilean pharmacies begin marijuana medicine sales in first for Latam

Reuters, 10 May 2017
Authors: Antonio de la Jara, Rosalba O’Brien, Andrew Hay
“Pharmacies in Chile’s capital Santiago will start selling cannabis-based medicines this week, the first time such treatments have been offered by drug stores in Latin America, the companies behind the launch said on Wednesday. Chile legalized the use of medical marijuana in 2015 and is among a number of Latin American countries gradually loosening laws prohibiting the cultivation, distribution and consumption of cannabis.”
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Where medical marijuana is legal, illegal use climbs

Reuters, 26 April 2017
Author: Andrew M. Seaman
“Where medical marijuana is legal, adults are more likely to use the drug illegally and are at an increased risk of cannabis use disorder, according to a new study. Researchers found that illegal use of marijuana and rates of cannabis use disorder rose to a greater extent in U.S. states that adopted laws legalizing marijuana for medical purposes than in states that didn’t adopt such laws.”
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FDA Warns 14 Companies on Bogus Cancer ‘Cures’

WebMD, 25 April 2017
Author: Robert Preidt
“The U.S. Food and Drug Administration on Tuesday posted warning letters to 14 companies that are selling more than 65 fake cancer treatments. The bogus products include pills, capsules, powders, creams, teas, oils and treatment and diagnostic kits. They’re most commonly marketed and sold without FDA approval on websites and social media platforms, the FDA announcement of its action said. The treatments are frequently advertised as “natural” and often falsely labeled as dietary supplements, the agency added.”
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