Why some doctors want to defund the police

Medical student Semir Bulle knows what it’s like to live in fear of the police. A child of Ethiopian refugees, he was carded a dozen times in one year while growing up in northwestern Ontario. Bulle says those interactions sent a message: “The police are going to be watching me, and I have to be sure I’m looking nonsuspicious, so they don’t try to harass me today.” Only later, in university, Bulle realized that his white classmates had very different experiences.

Researchers investigate the effectiveness of public health messaging during the pandemic

Stay home. Flatten the curve. Stay two metres apart. Stick to your “social bubble.” Wear a mask. To reduce the spread of COVID-19, public health authorities have been instructing us to change our behaviours at a dizzying pace. As Canadians try to square the latest advice, university researchers and lecturers have been taking notes. Academics from public health to English to philosophy are looking at what’s being said, how it’s being said and – most importantly – how these messages are resonating.

What about the wait times Canada isn’t tracking? | CMAJ News

Janet Lunn was on a waitlist for four years to see a neurologist in Halifax for pain that felt like “an immense amount of pressure” on her temple and behind her eye. The pain would wake her up in the night, often only allowing her a few hours of sleep. “I started developing anxiety about going to sleep because I knew the pain would hit,” Lunn says. While she waited for specialist care, she lost her job, and her long-term relationship ended – both events she attributes partly to her lack of sleep.

Are Noisy Hospitals Making Us Sick?

Since implementing a noise reduction program at her hospital five years ago, Soong is particularly attuned to the dips and peaks of hospital volume. She knows that the noise problem at hospitals is a serious one. More than just an annoyance for patients and staff, excessive noise can lead to lack of sleep, delirium, longer recovery times, and even addiction to tranquilizers. If a hospital’s mission is to improve the health of its patients, then noise is one of the biggest hurdles.

Fear, neglect, and close quarters: Inside Ontario’s migrant-worker health crisis

In late May, Amy Cohen, an organizer with Radical Action With Migrants in Agriculture, in British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley, received a WhatsApp message from a migrant farm worker in Ontario. He and another worker were in the bunkhouse, their living quarters on farm property, because they were too sick to work that day. His friend was vomiting, short of breath, and losing consciousness. Could she call an ambulance?

It's time to stop giving the message that kids can't play outside

For almost two months now, the primary public health message across Canada, and especially in Ontario, has been “stay home.” In cities, exercise outside is allowed, ideally in quiet areas at off-peak times, but not exactly encouraged. Guidance around outdoor exercise has principally been for adults. As the provincial chief medical officer of health, Dr. David Williams, put it, the rules shouldn’t stop “anyone from going out for their morning jog.” Children’s need for outdoor activity seems to have been neglected altogether.

Why medical faculties are broadening admissions criteria

Gabby Schoettle, a first-year medical student at Western University, was 8 years old when she lost her mother to breast cancer. In high school, when her father’s health started deteriorating, she took on the role of making meals for her younger brother and caring for her father. In her final year of high school, her father passed away. She and her brother had to work to pay the mortgage. “We had to learn a lot of things on the fly,” says Ms. Schoettle.

What parents need to know as the coronavirus spreads

The coronavirus, or COVID-19, continues to spread, and has now infected more than 80,000 people worldwide. While most of those cases are in China, outbreaks have surfaced in South Korea, Italy and Iran. The World Health Organization has said to be prepared for a pandemic, and the Centers for Disease Control in the United States warned on Feb 25 that the outbreak could cause a “severe disruption” to the lives of ordinary Americans. In Canada, chief medical officer of health Teresa Tam said on Feb

Proposed protocol to keep COVID-19 out of hospitals

At-home testing and monitoring of possible COVID-19 cases could ease pressure on hospitals and emergency services and prevent the spread of infection, say experts. Public health officials, hospital leaders and paramedics in the Champlain Local Health Integration Network in Ontario are working on a protocol to do just that. Under the proposed protocol, people suspected to have COVID-19 would be assessed, swabbed and monitored at home by specially trained paramedics in protective equipment.

When Black medical students weren’t welcome at Queen’s

In 1918, the Queen’s University senate voted to ban Black students from enrolling in its medical school. At the time, around 15 Black men were enrolled, representing one of the highest proportions of Black students of any medical school in the country, according to Edward Thomas, a cultural studies PhD candidate at Queen’s. While those students weren’t immediately forced out, they were strongly encouraged to leave by administrators. The ban emboldened racist sentiment on campus – white students
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