Many of our readers place a particular value on communications emanating from the National Centre for Pharmacoeconomics (NCPE) at St James’s Hospital these days, so it’s interesting to see their longer-established counterparts in the UK break fresh ground in this area. NICE – also known as the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence – has just launched the official NICE Guidance app for users of Android and iPhone smartphones.
A recent post bemoaned the quality of a recent Amnesty International video laudably highlighting inequity of access to healthcare for those with medical cards. If the charity is considering freshening up their digital outreaches, they could do worse that take a look at a clip that’s lurking right beside their limited Healthcare Guaranteed: Scourge! video on YouTube. In I Like to Shift Girls, Limerick satirists the Rubberbandits head into the hospital to tackle the subject of safe-sex. We’re warning before you go any further that whilst it’s clever and tongue in cheek, it’s not for the fainthearted.
The third episode in Amnesty International’s campaign for equal access to healthcare in Ireland represents one of the most disjointed approaches to lobbying and key message delivery yet undertaken. ‘Healthcare Guaranteed: Scourge!’ arrived in your scribe’s inbox from a friend tagged ‘The weirdest health campaign ever’ and that description is probably being kind.
The Glucksman Library and Graduate Entry Medical School at the University of Limerick has welcomed the recent donation by the M&C Group of an archive of the doctors’ newspaper Medicine Weekly.
The profits made by parallel importers in Ireland have largely passed under the radar of Irish business journalists and those outside the pharmaceutical industry. But not so in Europe where the newswire Bloomberg recently posted a compelling article detailing the extent of the practice. It features the intriguing story of Andreas Mohringer, the Austrian entrepreneur who started out importing and exporting cough medicine before building up to annual sales of €410 million and buying himself a priceless 1953 vintage Ferrari convertible.
If you take the task of GMS reimbursement out of it, the process for bringing Rx medicines to market is in Ireland is pretty straightforward and uniform across Europe. Bringing products down the OTC path is a different matter entirely with local regulatory agencies the key players. One wonders then what the IMB might make of suggestions from the FDA that the time may be right to move well-known prescription medicines to over the counter status.
Engineers in the US have developed a new system for people with spinal cord injuries which allows them to steer an electric wheelchair using a tongue-stud wirelessly linked to their iPhone. The remarkable breakthrough by a team from Georgia Tech involves an inconspicuous dental retainer embedded with sensors which interprets seven different tongue commands. The sensors track the movement of a tiny magnet in the stud and this information is in turn transferred to the wheelchair through software installed on an iPhone. Even more extraordinarily, the system has been configured with a universal interface that can be bolted-on to any electric wheelchair.
The marketing team at Paddy Power have been taking risks with some of the most daring advertising yet seen on the web by an Irish company. Thus far, the benefits achieved by their Cheltenham campaign seem to be outweighing the risks of close-to-the-edge comments including a tongue-in-cheek reference to national stereotypes.