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Obesity, cancer and mental health – this week’s Friday Five

Royal family launches “Every Mind Matters” campaign

Public Health England and the NHS have launched a new online initiative, Every Mind Matters, to help people take simple steps to look after their mental health.

A recent PHE survey revealed that 83% of people have experienced early signs of poor mental health in the last 12 months. It’s hoped that Every Mind Matters will empower people with the tools they need to deal with everyday causes of stress, anxiety, low mood and trouble sleeping.

Every Mind Matters was promoted by 3-minute film voiced by the duke and duchesses of Cambridge and Sussex.

Read more in the GOV.UK.

GSK recalls potential cancer risk drug

GlaxoSmithKline is recalling stocks of Zantac from UK pharmacies as a precautionary measure due to the possible contamination with a carcinogenic impurity, N-nitrosodimethylamine (NDMA).

Zantac, also sold generically as ranitidine, is commonly prescribed to treat heartburn.

GSK is investigating the potential source of the NDMA. It’s thought to have been introduced by changes in the manufacturing process.

Read more in The Guardian.

Breast cancer death rates almost halve in 30 years

The death rate among UK women with breast cancer has fallen by 44% over the past 30 years, showed figures from Cancer Research UK.

In 1989, when deaths from the condition reached a record high, 59.8 deaths per 100 000 women were recorded, but data show that this fell to 33.4 by 2017.

Cancer Research UK have said that improvements in surgery, radiotherapy, new drugs, and screening had all contributed to the trend.

Read more in The Guardian.

Children to be treated for gaming addiction on NHS

Under the NHS Long Term Plan, children and young adults who are seriously addicted to computer games will now be able to get help at a specialist clinic.

The NHS has launched the new service as part of the National Centre for Behavioural Addictions, which will also provide support for internet addiction and is located alongside the National Problem Gambling Clinic.

The news comes amid growing concerns about the amount of time children spend playing online games and the impact it can have on their mental health.

Read more in the PharmaTimes.


Quote of the week

In her final report as Chief Medical Officer, Dame Sally Davies called for tighter regulation of unhealthy foods to tackle child obesity.

“The unavoidable fact is that over time our environment has become very unhealthy without us realising. Our children are now suffering from painful, potentially life-limiting disease. Our politicians need to be bold and help everyone embrace healthier life choices.”


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