By Marco Chown Oved Investigative Reporter Thu., May 3, 2018 When Dr. Jacques Lemire took his laptop to get fixed in January 2004, the technician made a disturbing discovery. On his hard drive, Lemire had collected photos of what a judge described as “sadistic images” of “prepubescent boys” who were “engaged in sexually explicit conduct.” The technician alerted authorities in San Diego, Calif., where Lemire had been treating children for 23 years. A criminal investigation confirmed he had also traded the images with others. Read more on the Star’s Medical Disorder investigation The California medical board revoked Lemire’s licence. He was sentenced to 15 months in prison after pleading guilty to possession and distribution of child pornography. Article Continued Below After he was released and deported to Canada, Quebec issued Lemire a new licence that allowed him to see patients. His licence … [Read more...] about This doctor was jailed for child porn. Then Quebec gave him a licence
Public health doctoral programs
By Jesse McLean Investigative Reporter Thu., May 3, 2018 Purdue Pharma, the maker of OxyContin, paid Canadian doctors nearly three-and-a-half times more money than it doled out to U.S. prescribers, according to a Star analysis of the drug maker’s physician payments adjusted for the countries’ populations. Purdue Canada gave just over $2 million to Canadian health-care professionals in 2016 for services such as consulting and delivering speeches on conditions and treatments. That same year, U.S.-based Purdue Pharma L.P. paid American physicians $5.53 million (Canadian), according to a U.S. government database showing the financial ties between Big Pharma and prescribers. (2016 is the only year payment data is publicly available for both countries.) That means for every 1,000 residents, Purdue spent $58 on Canadian doctors compared to $17 in the U.S. Another way to look at it: Purdue gave $24 for every Canadian physician, while its U.S. operations … [Read more...] about Why did the maker of OxyContin pay Canadian doctors nearly three-and-a-half times more money per capita than it doled out to U.S. prescribers?
Universal health coverage (UHC) remains a challenge for many countries worldwide and is thus the theme for World Health Day 2018. Achieving UHC is also one of the sustainable development goals (SDGs), which stipulates for good health and well-being. Currently, half of the world’s population lacks access to essential health services, according to the World Bank. Indonesia’s health coverage program, the National Health Insurance (JKN) program, is administered by the BPJS Kesehatan (Healthcare and Social Security Agency). With a membership comprising 195.2 million people, the program is one of the biggest of its kind in the world. Furthermore, there is the Indonesian Health Card (KIS), an additional program that provides wider coverage and has been distributed to 92.4 million JKN holders. Although the JKN is the health coverage program and BPJS is the agency, the term BPJS is loosely used to refer to the program. Given its wide coverage, mostly among the lower middle class, … [Read more...] about Q&A: BPJS Kesehatan, health for all Indonesians
By Amy Ellis Nutt The Washington Post Fri., March 30, 2018 The first warning came a dozen years ago, when the Food and Drug Administration accused the drug company AstraZeneca of “false or misleading” information about health risks in the marketing material for its blockbuster medication Seroquel, an antipsychotic developed to treat schizophrenia but increasingly prescribed “off label” for insomnia. What followed was an onslaught of litigation by state attorneys general, who charged AstraZeneca with fraudulently promoting Seroquel for unapproved uses, and by individual patients, who claimed that it had failed to alert consumers about some of the drug’s most pernicious side effects. Although the company never admitted wrongdoing, by the end of 2011 it had paid out more than $1 billion (U.S.) to settle many of the cases. Another product might have been derailed, but not Seroquel. Despite generic competition and lingering lawsuits, … [Read more...] about Off-label prescriptions of Seroquel — drug used to treat schizophrenia — reveals conflicts within U.S. health care
By Ranit Mishori The Washington Post Sun., March 18, 2018 About a decade ago, a colleague told me about a cool new initiative, something called “Exercise Is Medicine.” The idea made total sense to me: Rather than just tell my patients about exercising, I would hand them an actual prescription for exercise, just like the ones I give patients for high blood pressure or diabetes. The thinking behind it was that an official “doctor’s order” for exercise, in the form of a prescription-pad-style piece of paper, would be taken more seriously by patients than a mere suggestion. I quickly started giving out these prescriptions, going so far as to find some official-looking templates online and printing them out. I wrote out “dosages” based on each patient’s age and medical condition, and relying on evidence-based recommendations. For example, for a person with diabetes, I might write a prescription that says: Frequency: At least … [Read more...] about Doctors are starting to give patients ‘social prescriptions’