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Pakistan allows import of life-saving drugs from India

The Pakistan government has allowed the import of life-saving drugs from India despite escalating tensions between the two countries over the Kashmir issue, according to a media report on Tuesday.

Pakistan downgraded its diplomatic relations and formally suspended its trade relations with India last month after New Delhi revoked the special status of Jammu and Kashmir and bifurcated it into two union territories.

India has maintained that Jammu and Kashmir was an integral part of India and the issue was strictly internal to the country. Pakistan's ministry of commerce, through a statutory regulatory order, gave the permission to import and export medicines from India, Geo TV reported.

Trade relations between the two neighbours were already strained following the Pulwama terror attack as India imposed 200 per cent customs duty on all goods imported from Pakistan. Pakistan has imported over USD 36 million worth of anti-rabies and anti-venom vaccines from India over the last 16 months.

The future of Telemedicine in India

India’s telemedicine market is growing immensely and is impacting the international economy in terms of growth rate, revenue, sale, market share and size, showing the market size in India.

Telemedicine employs collaborative technologies to facilitate a virtual doctor-patient encounter. These solutions combine voice, video, medical data, and collaboration tools, to facilitate a patient to see a doctor, without having to travel long distances.

 In 2018, telemedicine has expanded in India. It has undertaken a new way for doctor consultations. This sector is at an ever-growing stage with high scope of development. This rapid growth in the last year presents telemedicine as the next frontier in the healthcare. The year 2019 will be an important year for telemedicine industry. Health data is useful in many ways and one of them is AI (Artificial Intelligence). In future, this will help in identifying issues related to medical health. Through IOT (internet of things) perspective medical emergencies like Asthma attack, heart failure, diabetes can be monitored via connected devices.

However, with the introduction of Ayushman Bharat Scheme, a biggest health financing scheme, Indian government has come up with ICT (Information and Communication Technology)focusing on the development of health sector in the country. This scheme includes Tele-health development ideology for long distance medical care to make a safe, effective, efficient, patient-centered and timely health management environment.

This integrated market of telemedicine platform will have a mix approach in the coming year. In a developing country like India, there is a lot of room for development. With the communication industry evolving at such a rapid pace, telemedicine sector is bound to develop too.

Faulty medical devices: Government sets up panel to frame rules for compensation

In good news for patients, the government has set up an expert panel to frame rules for compensation in case of an adverse event due to a faulty or unsafe medical device.

Health ministry’s apex panel has cleared formation of the sub-committee to amend Medical Devices Rules, 2017, to include provisions for compensation on the grounds of a malfunction in the device, or it being unsafe or non-compliant.

This would help plug a loophole in the rules, as under the existing dispensation, the government initially found itself “helpless” in handling the Johnson & Johnson hip implant case.

The decision to bring in separate rules has been taken to simplify the legal process, cut down time and multiple stages. A case of an adverse event due to a medical implant is difficult to prove in the existing system and lacks clarity in law, experts said earlier.

The need for a legal provision for compensation is especially important for India with its socio-economic demographics, which may not have the strength to fight against powerful corporates in courts, sources said. The compensation will have to be given in the case where an adverse event or death is reported only for already approved devices, and not those which are under clinical trials.
 

EC bans all kinds of tobacco in polling booths during 2019 elections

The Election Commission has banned all kinds of tobacco in polling booths during next year's general elections, a bid to effectively implement tobacco control laws in the country. The Commission has asked all states and UTs to issue instructions to district electoral officers-cum-district magistrates to ensure prohibition of not just smoking, but also the use of chewable tobacco in all polling booths. 

As per the guidelines, each polling booth will have a banner put up, saying the same. 

The presiding officer of each polling booth will be nominated as nodal officer for ensuring tobacco-free status at their booths. 

All district tobacco control cells will supervise and monitor this campaign to sensitise people on ill effects of tobacco. 

The move comes after Delhi government's Health Department approached the Commission seeking declaration of all polling stations as tobacco-free zones rather than just declaring them as smoke-free as it used to be in previous elections. 

In a letter, Additional Director (Health) Dr S K Arora had stated that tobacco use is the single largest preventable cause of disease, disability and pre-mature death and major threat to the present and future health of any population. 

"On election day, majority of adult population of our country is likely to visit polling booth to caste its vote. This will be an excellent opportunity to sensitise among majority adult population on a single day through displayed multi-colour banners with message on ill-effects of tobacco at polling booth," he had said.

Eyes may be a signal of your mental stress level

With demands of work productivity shooting up stress levels, researchers have discovered that a person’s eyes may offer a solution.

The study showed that the pupil dilation - widening of the pupils of the eyes - could be used to indicate levels of stress of a person. 

Many people are multi-tasking but there is no measurement for someone’s mental well-being. However, we found that the size of a pupil could be the key to measuring
someone’s mental state while they multitask,” said an Assistant Professor from the University of Missouri in the US.

To understand, the researchers used a simulated oil and gas refinery plant control room where they watched, through the motion-capture and eye-tracking technology, as
the participants reacted to unexpected changes, such as alarms.

During the scenario’s simple tasks, the participants’ eye searching behaviours were more predictable. Yet, as the tasks became more complex and unexpected changes
occurred, their eye behaviour became more erratic, the findings revealed.

The team hopes that this can give a better insight into how systems should be designed to avoid mentally overloading workers and build a safer working environment.    

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