• Gut study questions benefits of probiotics

    Open Forum     |      September 7, 2018

    New research shows that many people’s digestive tracts prevent standard probiotics from successfully colonising them. Furthermore, taking probiotics to counterbalance antibiotics could delay the return of normal gut bacteria to their original state.

  • 3 new ‘superbugs’ invade Australian hospitals

    Open Forum     |      September 5, 2018

    Three new strains of superbug resistant to most antibiotics have been found in Australian hospitals, and are spreading quickly. Modern hospital practices, including the use of antibiotic impregnated medical devices such as catheters, may have driven the evolution of this once benign bacteria towards potentially incurable infections.

  • Environmental metals a ‘global health concern’

    Open Forum     |      September 2, 2018

    Exposure to heavy metals such as arsenic, lead, copper and cadmium in the environment is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and coronary heart disease.

  • Knee replacement rehab in private hospitals is costing us all

    Open Forum     |      August 28, 2018

    Rates of inpatient rehab after total knee replacement are increasing in Australia at a time when they are declining overseas, despite evidence that for most people it is no better than home- or community-based rehabilitation, according to Australian researchers.

  • Safer hospitals would save money as well as lives

    Open Forum     |      August 21, 2018

    A new report from the Grattan Institute argues there are simple ways to improve patient care and save public money at the same time in the nation’s hard-pressed hospitals.

  • Most opioid deaths are caused by prescription drugs

    Open Forum     |      August 21, 2018

    The number of people dying as a result of opioid use has risen markedly, says a report by the National Drug and Alcohol Research Centre at UNSW Sydney.

  • Weight remains an unspoken concern in many GP visits

    Open Forum     |      August 20, 2018

    Despite growing levels of obesity in the Australian population, new research has found that weight is not discussed in GP surgeries as often as might be expected.

  • Health providers’ security flaws threaten patient data

    Ian Bloomfield     |      August 18, 2018

    Amid the controversy surrounding the My Health Record system, very little attention has been given to the glaring security weaknesses of the health provider systems that will be used daily to access patient information.

  • Don’t ditch the bread: Moderate carbohydrate intake is good for health

    Open Forum     |      August 18, 2018

    Eating carbohydrates in moderation seems to be optimal for health and longevity, according to new research published in The Lancet Public Health. The observational study of more than 15,400 people from the USA found that moderate consumers of carbohydrates had the lowest risk of mortality.

  • Australian longevity bucks a falling trend in developed nations

    Open Forum     |      August 17, 2018

    After decades of constant increases, life expectancy in many advanced countries is beginning to decline, although Australian longevity continues to creep upwards.

  • How we see into the future all the time

    Cheryl Critchley     |      August 15, 2018

    Researchers are helping explain how the human brain can accurately predict where a fast-moving object will end up. And why some people are better at it than others.

  • Obesity needs smarter solutions than ‘sin taxes’

    Brendan Markey-Towler     |      August 14, 2018

    Obesity is a consequence of our actions, rather than a rational choice, but there is scope for governments to get involved and improve our options through a range of ‘smart’ solutions beyond higher taxes on junk food.