News Features

Patient safety — a global health priority

Members of the College of Anaesthesiologists of Ireland outline the critical role of anaesthesiology and how anaesthesiologists can play a major part in patient safety in advance of World Patient Safety Day The College of Anaesthesiologists of Ireland (CAI) has endorsed the establishment of World Patient Safety Day to be observed annually on 17 September.…

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Lost in translation?

A large proportion of people living in Ireland do not speak English as their first language. Sarah Gallagher investigates the challenges this poses to healthcare access and whether interpretation services need to be improved According to the Central Statistics Office, the number of Irish residents who speak a language other than English or Irish at…

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Who is liable when artificial intelligence goes wrong?

Technological advancements in medicine can benefit patients and clinicians but new approaches can also mean new risks. Dr Helen Hartley, Head of Underwriting Policy at Medical Protection, discusses where the liability lies for artificial intelligence The concept of artificial intelligence (AI) may lead some to imagine robots running amok in a bid to destroy humanity,…

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When music and medicine unite

Dr Neil Black and Mr Brian MacKay of the Irish Doctors Choir speak to Clíona Hughes about the sense of achievement and fun generated by their rehearsals and performances Music and medicine may not be commonly associated, but the Irish Doctors Choir is changing that. The choir, which comprises doctors from all over Ireland, performs…

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The lifeline of conservation

Dr Lisa McNamee describes the healthcare concerns of a community in east Namibia and reports on a conservation medicine course run by a foundation in the locality Between the Namib and Kalahari deserts, in one of the driest and most sparsely populated areas in the world, lies Namibia, stretching for nearly a million square kilometres.…

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The rise and rise of STIs

Sarah Gallagher examines recent data showing an increase in cases of sexually-transmitted infections (STIs) and speaks to experts about reasons behind the trend Data published by the Health Protection Surveillance Centre (HPSC) shows that sexually-transmitted infections (STIs) and HIV diagnoses are rising. In the first 28 weeks of 2019, there were 1,428 more cases of…

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The big, bad obesity pandemic

The Department of Health regards obesity as a ‘public health priority’, but three years on from the publication of the Government’s action plan, what progress has been made? David Lynch reports The Department of Health launched A Healthy Weight for Ireland: Obesity Policy and Action Plan 2016-2025 in September 2016, and since then, a series…

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SURG-Africa and improving surgical services on the continent

Dr Jakub Gajewski, RCSI Institute of Global Surgery (IGS) Research Programme Director and SURG-Africa International Co-ordinator, RCSI IGS, and Mr Gerald Mwapasa, Malawi Country Co-ordinator for SURG-Africa, describe how the project is helping to increase access to surgery for rural dwellers in three African countries SURG-Africa, international implementation research consortium, is helping to increase access…

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Assisted death: the final frontier?

Assisted dying has been the subject of recent and upcoming consultations by UK medical professional bodies. Catherine Reilly speaks to Irish clinicians and campaigners on the issue Marie was not suicidal, Marie wanted every second of life, but she wanted the quality to be there,” Mr Tom Curran, partner of the late Ms Marie Fleming,…

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Entering the robotic era

Dr Tiarnán Ó Doinn, Research Fellow, DCU; Dr Daniel Ahern, Surgical/Orthopaedic Trainee and Research Fellow, UCC; and Mr Joseph Butler, Orthopaedic Consultant Surgeon, Mater Private Hospital, write about developments in the use of robotic-assistance for spinal surgery Spinal surgery has undergone considerable technological advances over the past number of decades, the most recent of which…

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