South Africa’s commercial farmers are faced with a number of challenges that may impede their ability to produce food to feed the nation. While there are many uncertainties, including the impact of climate change and future national policy around land ownership, beyond agricultural employers’ control, help is at hand for farmers and their staff to contain costs and boost health and productivity in ways they may never have considered possible. “South African farmers are considered to be among the most resourceful in the world, often having to contend with erratic weather patterns or harsh environments in order to sustain their business in producing food for profit,” says Lizette Bester, Executive at Agility Corporate. “Farmers are constantly performing risk assessments as they seek to make the most of their resources while working to address potential risks to their produce and their bottom line before these become a problem. Emerging and seasoned farmers alike depend on the labour of their staff to maximise their yield. “When it comes to risks impacting the workforce, there are a myriad of factors influencing agricultural operations’ efficiency in their contribution to food production. In order to make tangible, lasting progress, worker productivity needs to be assessed and addressed holistically.” The impact of stress, psychological trauma, substance abuse, financial worries and workers’ living with chronic illnesses that do not adhere to prescribed medicine are some of the many factors that can worsen an employees’ state of health. “Preventative healthcare supported by an effective, multi-pronged approach to wellness in the farming sector is, therefore, a considerable assistance in managing the risks of an agricultural workforce. We look at the context to determine the interventions that could address problems threatening their employees’ health. “Through our service, Resolution Health Medical Scheme provides healthcare cover for employees of all . . .
Measles remains one of the leading causes of death among young children globally, claiming 134 200 lives in 2015, according to the World Health Organization (WHO). Of these deaths, the majority were children under the age of five. Measles is, however, a preventable disease for which a safe and cost-effective vaccine is available, says Dr Anchen Laubscher, medical director of Netcare. “WHO has estimated that measles vaccination prevented an estimated 20.3-million deaths internationally between the years of 2000 and 2015. This highlights the importance of using this vaccine to protect you and your family,” she adds. Recent outbreak In February this year, a local outbreak of measles was confirmed in Stellenbosch by the Western Cape Department of Health. Shortly thereafter, in March, the National Institute of Communicable Diseases (NICD) issued a high alert following an outbreak of measles in the south of Johannesburg. A further 17 cases of measles were confirmed in Gauteng early in May. According to the Gauteng Department of Health, most of these individuals had not been vaccinated against the disease and 10 of the cases were linked to a single family who were not vaccinated, apparently for religious reasons. “South Africa’s last major measles outbreak occurred between 2009 and 2011, when some 18 000 cases were reported, and these recent cases are a most concerning trend,” Dr Laubscher observes. Highly contagious Measles is a highly contagious viral disease and is one of the most dangerous of all childhood illnesses, according to Dr Laubscher. Measles causes a rash and fever and occurs mostly during winter and spring. It is generally prevalent among young children but can be contracted at any age. “Babies younger than one year of age, malnourished individuals or people whose immune systems are compromised, are particularly at risk of developing severe complications from measles. The most mortalities occur in people under the age of five and over . . .
According to the Allergy Foundation of South Africa (AFSA), allergies, or allergic diseases as they are otherwise known, are on the increase globally from lower through to upper-income countries, and some 40% of allergy sufferers are children. The Foundation says that no fewer than a third of all South Africans will develop some allergic disease such as asthma, allergic rhinitis (hay fever), eczema, food allergy or a severe allergic reaction (anaphylaxis) at some point during their lifetime. Netcare’s medical director Dr Anchen Laubscher says allergies can not only have a negative impact on an affected child’s quality of life, but a severe allergic reaction can even be life threatening. Take precautions “Allergic conditions are among the most common of childhood chronic diseases. It is of critical importance for parents and childminders to be aware of what could elicit an allergic response as well as to the symptoms of allergies and, severe allergic reaction in particular, so that they can take the appropriate action to protect their children, should it ever become necessary,” warns Dr Laubscher. “The severity of an allergic reaction can vary widely. The chronic, persistent effects generally range from mild and hardly noticed to significantly inconveniencing. In some cases, however, there can be a sudden and dramatic reaction such as severe skin inflammation, vomiting, swelling and respiratory compromise. Such a reaction may be an indication that the child is suffering a severe allergic reaction, or anaphylactic shock, which is considered a medical emergency.” What is an allergy? What exactly is an allergy? Dr Laubscher explains that an allergy is caused by the human body’s own immune system overreacting to a substance from the environment that is completely harmless to most other people. The immune system mistakenly responds to an otherwise harmless substance as if it were a serious threat. “This triggers the release of chemicals such as . . .
Since 2011, the Livewell Group has been at the forefront of dementia and Alzheimer’s care in South Africa. We are motivated by a personal and heartfelt concern for the dignity and care of our elders and our efforts continue to be encouraged by the strong market need for specialised individual care. Livewell is excited to announce the launch of our Bryanston Facility. Our goal was to give the public a taste of what The Livewell Group is about – namely, a specialised Dementia care facility providing Quality of Life to residents with world class care and innovation. Our motivation stems from a personal and heartfelt concern for the dignity and care of our elders. At the recent Livewell Villages launch in Bryanston, over 70 guests enjoyed the Livewell hospitality and had the opportunity of walking through our luxurious refurbished manor house lounges and exclusive suites. Guests were entertained under a beautiful Jacaranda tree in our large tranquil and picturesque gardens. We had the privilege of having Dr. Ryan Fuller as our guest speaker, a Psychiatrist that specialises in Memorycare, Psychogeriatrcian Assessment and Management of Memory & related Mental Health Disorders. Dr. Fuller, who developed the Memory Care Clinic, made it clear that due to the fragmentation of memory care services and lack of family structure in South Africa, our Livewell Village concept raises the standard for dementia related health care services, and encourages dignity and meaningfulness in the lives of our memory-care residents. Our guests left inspired by the harmony of our typical peaceful country village where they could imagine our residents strolling in a safe place where everyone feels included, can remain independent for longer, enjoy a sense of choice of control over their lives and pursue their hobbies and interest in our lovely facility. At our Villages, residents benefit from a tranquil personal space as well as a shared space with a sense of belonging. They . . .
Johannesburg, May 29, 2017-- Marple Skin Care is one the emerging manufacturers of premium skin care products that have been scientifically validated and formulated from natural ingredients introduces a unique Marple équilibre - Even Skin Tone for Sensitive Skin with Niacinamide for youthful skin. Marple Skin Care's new dermatological tested équilibre range has been scientifically formulated for sensitive skin. Developed for even skin care, the équilibre range has been formulated with 99% natural ingredients. Marple's products are not tested on animals, contains no parabens, no petrochemicals and no SLS. This range of products uses the holy grail of skin care, Niacinamade to treat the appearance of fine lines and improve the retention of moisture thus slowing down premature ageing. These products are perfect for use on sensitive skin. The Marple équilibre brand’s uniqueness - Even Skin Tone for sensitive Skin was formulated from natural ingredients with African indigenous oils like Mongongo and Kalahari Melon. Below are the benefits of the indigenous oils and Niacinamide to the skin: Anti Aging: In multiple clinical studies, topical application of niacinamide improved fine lines and wrinkles, skin shallowness (yellowing), hyper pigmentation, and red blotchiness, as well as elasticity. It has been shown to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles by stimulating collagen production, as well as even out skin tone by slowing down the transfer of melanin to your skin’s epidermis. Acne Treatment: Strengthening the outer layer of skin is a major property of niacinamide. Vitamin B3 provides a fuel which strengthens cellular bonds and tightens skin. As a result of this tightening, acne has a tougher time taking root. A 2004 study in the "Journal of Cosmetic Dermatology" confirms this statement. The German researchers found the stabilization of the skin's outer layer has an anti- Inflammatory effect, which can prevent acne breakouts Rosacea . . .
Novartis, SA Department of Science and Technology and South African Medical Research Council to collaborate on enhanced research capabilities and innovative R&D Cape Town, May 25, 2017 – Novartis has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the South African Department of Science and Technology (DST) and South African Medical Research Council (SAMRC) to formalise Novartis’ ongoing investment in developing South African research capabilities, scientific cooperation and collaboration for capacity building and innovation. The MoU, a public private partnership (PPP), aims to establish a framework for potential cooperation between the parties. This will allow for joint research programs in selected communicable and non-communicable diseases (NCD), improve South African patients’ access to innovative medicines and build up the research & development capabilities and ecosystem in South Africa and broader Africa. The MoU with the DST and SAMRC demonstrates the parties’ commitment to research and development (R&D) which will position South Africa as an innovative hub for Africa. Novartis has long collaborated with the South African government and public and private sector institutions to improve healthcare delivery and support scientific research, clinical trial and capability and capacity building in its field. Novartis South Africa Country President, Dr Thomas Kowallik, notes that the company has made significant investment in the area of R&D within the South African healthcare and pharmaceutical space in recent years and is firmly committed to continue to do so. “As a global leader in R&D employing 20 000 scientists worldwide and investing $US9 billion in R&D every year, this ongoing collaboration has the potential to lead to breakthrough innovations stemming from South Africa. Innovation will attract further investment with positive outcomes for the economy. We live in an era of innovation with a lot of opportunities, jobs and . . .
Growing evidence shows sleep disorders are more common in individuals with ADHD. Sleep and ADHD are related as different regions of the brain interact and overlap for attention, sleep and functioning. Inadequate sleep can negatively affect the way adults think, function and behave. The question remains whether ADHD itself leads to difficulty sleeping or whether individuals with ADHD are more susceptible to external environmental factors that affect sleeping patterns. The sleep challenge Adults with ADHD often have what’s known as ‘bedtime resistance’. They struggle to settle down in the evening and interruptions during bedtime routines are more difficult to overcome. Sleeping problems in people with ADHD can be a result of co-existing conditions like depression and anxiety, for example. Stimulants (which keep you alert) found in caffeine and some ADHD medications can contribute to sleep disorders in adults with ADHD. Drug and alcohol abuse problems (which can be common in adults with untreated ADHD) are also a consideration. Why you’re always tired Common sleep disorders in adults with ADHD include restless legs syndrome (RLS), a neurological disorder that causes the irresistible urge to move the legs to relieve an uncomfortable sensation, especially at night. RLS is one of the most frequent sleep disorders in individuals with ADHD. Insomnia, another common ADHD-related sleeping disorder, makes it difficult to fall asleep and the individual often wakes up feeling tired. Adults with ADHD often mismatch sleep-pattern timing or have a delayed sleep-phase disorder, where sleeping and waking up occurs later than normal. Sleep disorders lead to disrupted sleep and impaired functioning as mood and energy levels are affected. Sleep disorder or ADHD? Sleep disorders can disguise ADHD diagnosis. What’s thought to be insomnia or sleep apnea could, in fact, be linked to ADHD. Consult with a doctor to find a solution and an accurate . . .
• This World Hypertension Day, Novartis warns of unhealthy habits that raise your blood pressure Johannesburg, 17 May, 2017 – The old adage ‘take it with a pinch of salt’ is meant to be a positive one – implying that a pinch of salt is of little consequence. But for those with high blood pressure and chronic heart conditions, that pinch of salt could be enough to push your daily salt intake into dangerous territory. Dr Thomas Kowallik, CEO and Country President of Novartis South Africa, says excessive salt intake is one of several factors increasing the risk of hypertension (high blood pressure). “World Hypertension Day on 17 May seeks to raise awareness of the health risks associated with hypertension, and the steps people can take to lower their risks of developing hypertension.” According to the International Society of Hypertension, hypertension is the major risk factor for cardiovascular disease and was named 'the number one killer' by the World Health Organization (WHO) in The World Health Report in 2002. People with hypertension have a four times higher risk of stroke and twice the risk of myocardial infarction (a heart attack) of those with normal blood pressure, says the Society. Lifestyle factors, such as physical inactivity, a salt-rich diet with highly processed and fatty foods, and alcohol and tobacco use, are cited as reasons for the rapid increase in the number of people with hypertension worldwide1. “South Africans have unacceptably high levels of hypertension, with up to 30% of adults known to be hypertensive2. High salt consumption is a key driver of hypertension, and there is strong evidence to indicate that South Africans consume up to 2-3 times the recommended daily allowance of 5 g,” says Kowallik. “Salt from processed food makes up as much as 75% of total salt intake in high-income countries3. South Africans tend to follow international trends to include unhealthy processed foods in their diet, and on top of that, they season . . .
Medici, the app that is revolutionising the doctor-patient relationship, is now available in South Africa and will continue to expand into the rest of Africa. The next-generation secure messaging app enables users to communicate virtually with medical providers via text, call or video, anytime, anywhere. First launched in the U.S., the app hosts an array of practitioners including family physicians, paediatricians, dermatologists, dentists, mental health providers, nutritionists, dieticians and even veterinarians, providing a more convenient and modernised method of consultation to suit all healthcare needs. Users on Medici will receive a consultation receipt so that patients are able to claim back from their Medical Aid provider. Patients who aren't covered by a Medical Aid will also benefit from the app as a result of the consultation fee being significantly lower than traditional examinations. Medici Africa has partnered with Dr Michael Mol and Hello Doctor, already servicing over 400 000 patients in SA today with their own panel of doctors. This partnership will create an integrated link between the two apps, allowing patients on Hello Doctor to consult with their own doctor via Medici and vice versa. Choosing a doctor is a very personal decision, which is what makes Medici so unique. Patients can speak to their existing family physician, who already has access to their full medical history and receive medical advice quickly and effectively. This innovation in healthcare technology is changing the face of healthcare and the way doctors and patients communicate. "South Africa gave me one of the most incredible foundations for life that I could have ever hoped for,” says Clinton Phillips, founder and CEO of Medici, founder of 2nd.MD, and former chiropractor and rugby player from South Africa. “Launching Medici in Africa is an incredible honour, it will change millions of lives and bring access to high-quality healthcare to patients and providers . . .
Nursing is a profession like no other. From nursing students learning the basics of clinical nursing care to those nurses pursuing highly specialised fields of healthcare, this is a vocation that requires dedication, resilience, acute attention to detail, and a life-long passion for learning. “This International Nurses’ Day, 12 May 2017, Netcare salutes the women and men who wear their uniforms with pride, as well as the students who aspire to take up this influential role in future,” says Shannon Nell, director of nursing and nursing education at Netcare. “Nurses fulfil a vital role in society, which extends beyond their working hours in a healthcare facility. When we see a nurse’s uniform, it speaks of knowledge in the service of care and a professional efficiency that is reassuring in times of illness or crisis. “All of our nurses, from the highly experienced and specialised to those who are just starting out in the profession, have one distinction in common: each chose to apply their minds and their lives to the pursuit of excellence in caring for others,” she adds. “Through studying and working in this demanding area of healthcare service delivery, these exceptional individuals know that ‘care’ is as much a science as it is an art. To all Netcare nurses, thank you all for the contribution you make each day for your patients, your respective teams, and for upholding Netcare’s unique approach to care.” Sister Metse Maphula, who is studying towards a post-basic qualification in critical care at Netcare Education’s Gauteng South West campus in Auckland Park, Johannesburg, says that the knowledge and skills she and her classmates are attaining are equipping them to make a positive difference not only in the course of their official duties, but also at community level. “Every day you get to help someone and make a positive difference in that person’s life. We can offer a lot of help to people in our community, our family members and, of course, our . . .