Staff shortages force surgeons to use ‘sticky tape’ to fix surgical instruments

SMH, 14 December 2016
Author: Anna Patty
“Senior surgeons say they are using “sticky tape” to fix surgical instruments during operations because of shortages of staff and equipment at Sydney’s busy Prince of Wales complex of hospitals. A litany of failures in the efficient supply of sterile equipment that works is outlined by a senior surgeon and in a confidential internal review.”
Find article here.

Doctors were under ‘political pressure’ in asylum seeker care, inquest hears

The Age, 29 November 2016
Source: AAP
“Doctors were under “political pressure” not to bring critically ill asylum seekers from Manus Island to Australia for medical treatment, an inquest has heard. A Brisbane inquest into the death of Iranian asylum seeker Hamid Kehazaei has heard evidence there are “levels of bureaucracy” surrounding urgent hospital transfers.”
Find article here.

The Intensive Care Lifeboat: a survey of lay attitudes to rationing dilemmas in neonatal intensive care

BMC Medical Ethics 2016 17:69
Authors: C. Arora, J. Savulescu, H. Maslen, M. Selgelid, D. Wilkinson
“Resuscitation and treatment of critically ill newborn infants is associated with relatively high mortality, morbidity and cost. Guidelines relating to resuscitation have traditionally focused on the best interests of infants. There are, however, limited resources available in the neonatal intensive care unit (NICU), meaning that difficult decisions sometimes need to be made. This study explores the intuitions of lay people (non-health professionals) regarding resource allocation decisions in the NICU.”
Find article here.

Research in disaster settings: a systematic qualitative review of ethical guidelines

BMC Medical Ethics 2016 17:62
Authors: Signe Mezinska, Péter Kakuk, Goran Mijaljica, Marcin Waligóra and Dónal P. O’Mathúna
“Conducting research during or in the aftermath of disasters poses many specific practical and ethical challenges. This is particularly the case with research involving human subjects. The extraordinary circumstances of research conducted in disaster settings require appropriate regulations to ensure the protection of human participants. The goal of this study is to systematically and qualitatively review the existing ethical guidelines for disaster research by using the constant comparative method (CCM).”
Find article here.

‘Cancer hotels’ house China’s patient refugees

Reuters, 29 September 2016
Author: Kim Kyung Hoon
“In the shadow of one of China’s top cancer hospitals in Beijing, a catacomb-like network of ramshackle brick buildings has become a home-from-home for hundreds of cancer patients and their families waiting for treatment. The financial burden for Chinese patients with serious conditions like cancer or diabetes can be overwhelming. Official data shows that up to 44 percent of families pushed into poverty were impoverished by illness.”
Find article here.

Bankstown-Lidcombe Hospital medical gases incident

NSW Health, 26 August 2016
Prepared by the Chief Health Officer
“Final report for Health in relation to critical incidents that occurred at Bankstown-Lidcombe Hospital in June and July 2016: dispensing incorrect gas to two neonates through a neonatal resuscitaire in Operating Theatre 8.”
Find report here.

Hundreds more baby deaths revealed in Victorian hospitals

SMH, 28 June 2016
Author: Julia Medew
“Inadequate medical care, hospital delays and poor resuscitation procedures are contributing to hundreds of infant deaths in Victorian hospitals, disturbing new data shows. A state government report that dwarfs the recent baby death scandal at Bacchus Marsh Hospital reveals 281 deaths between 2008 and 2013 involved “contributing factors” including inadequate clinical monitoring, misinterpretation of tests and delayed caesarean procedures.”
Find article here.

Israel rabbi to paramedics: ‘Leave Palestinians to die’

Aljazeera, 20 April 2016
Author: Jonathan Cook
“There is mounting evidence that Israeli ambulance crews are withholding treatment from Palestinians injured during a wave of attacks over the past six months, according to rights groups. Physicians for Human Rights in Israel, a medical watchdog group, found that wounded Palestinians had been left untreated for as long as two hours. In parallel, says the group, Israeli soldiers regularly deny Palestinian crews in the occupied territories access to injured Palestinians in violation of international agreements.”
Find article here.

In what circumstances will a neonatologist decide a patient is not a resuscitation candidate?

J Med Ethics doi:10.1136/medethics-2015-102941
Authors: Peter Daniel Murray, Denise Esserman, Mark Randolph Mercurio
“Objective The purpose of this study was to determine the opinions of practising neonatologists regarding the ethical permissibility of unilateral Do Not Attempt Resuscitation (DNAR) decisions in the neonatal intensive care unit.”
Find abstract here.