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News / First freight train from UK sets off as China-Europe rail services soar

first_img The first train from the UK to China left London Gateway today, heading for Yiwu, where it is scheduled to arrive on 27 April, with 30 containers carrying whisky, soft drinks, vitamins and pharmaceuticals.Rail services between Europe and China have seen a surge in volumes as services grow and shippers take advantage of the cost and speed benefits available.Volumes in March were up 140% on last year, while first-quarter volumes of 30,600 teu nearly matched the fourth-quarter peak, according to United Transport and Logistics Company (UTLC), an intermodal freight operator set up by the national railways of Russia, Belarus and Kazakhstan.“Despite the Chinese New Year celebrations, which normally cause decline in demand for transport in the first months of a year, first-quarter volumes are close to the  36,600 teu transported in Q4, and exceed the third-quarter result of 29,900 teu”, said Alexey Grom, UTLC president. By Alex Lennane 10/04/2017 The company said much of the growth was due to a launch of regular shipments in partnership with DB Cargo Russia.There has been considerable growth in interest in the rail freight option. UK forwarder Davies Turner introduced a fixed-day, weekly rail service for LCL shipments from Wuhan and Hefei, into the UK and Ireland.Chairman Philip Stephenson said: “We had been investigating the practicalities of a rail freight service from China to the UK and Ireland for some time, and conducted trials last year, before officially launching the service in January.“We knew there were operational difficulties to overcome, such as transitions from standard to broad gauge track and back again, but we are confident that this has been achieved by our partners and the rail companies concerned.“The big selling point is that the cost is around 70% less than shipping the cargo by air, and 16 days quicker than by sea.”The service takes 21 days from Wuhan, 23 days from Hefei and 25 days to Dublin.Meanwhile, on the eastbound leg, Hong Kong-based Kerry Logistics claimed it was the first Asian 3PL to offer backhaul capacity.William Ma, group managing director of Kerry Logistics, said, “We are extremely excited to be the first Asia-based global 3PL to move eastbound freight from Europe along the One Belt One Road trade route, turning part of the roadmap into reality. We are committed to developing an overland transportation network for road, rail and multimodal freight services in China to Central Asia and Europe.”There has also been some concern, from the air freight sector in particular, that the rail option would take significant chunks of market share. But Nick Platts, head of Heathrow Cargo, said at last week’s Multimodal event that he didn’t believe air would suffer.“Rail can’t offer the speed and reach that air can. And if you are worried about security, you have to give the volumes to air. On a train, the cargo has to be handled a number of times when the gauge changes. I think ocean will have more of a problem than air.”But Karl Gheysen, former chief executive of Kazkhstan’s inland port of Khorgos Gateway and now executive at Kazakhstan Railways, said: “Air freight will be more affected than shipping and the perception of security is much worse than it actually is.”He said Hewlett-Packard now accounted for 30-40% of total capacity and car makers were testing the service.There has also been considerable growth in the use of reefer containers and Mr Gheysen said companies were starting to look at certification for carrying temperature-sensitive pharmaceuticals, while Alibaba and postal services were also eyeing rail as an option.He added that he had also seen some rail-air services.“We tested it with KLM via Almaty to Amsterdam. KLM had empty bellies, so we did some trial shipments. It’s a good back-up option. There are lots of opportunities and ideas.“2017 will be the year that China-Europe rail takes off,” he added.center_img © Tomas1111last_img read more

News / Tomorrow’s world today, as automated ‘rapid logistics’ begin to optimise supply chains

first_img By Sam Whelan, Asia correspondent 03/08/2017 © Chanwit Whanset Software start-up Yojee is using artificial intelligence (AI) and blockchain technology to optimise freight movements and develop a new type of “collaborative economy” logistics model.Currently used primarily for last-mile e-commerce deliveries, Yojee connects retailers and logistics providers by combining an online freight platform with AI-powered software that optimises transport capacity throughout the supply chain, including real-time tracking, pick-up and delivery confirmation, invoicing, job management and driver ratings.Yojee co-founder and chief executive Ed Clarke told The Loadstar he spotted an opportunity during a stint working in South-east Asia’s burgeoning e-commerce sector.“I saw first-hand the disjointed nature of logistics and the complete lack of information being shared in any sort of organised manner. We saw a huge opportunity for all the different players in the supply chain to work together on a single platform,” he explained.Based in Singapore, Yojee has 33,000 vehicles and 592 warehouses registered across 10 countries in South-east Asia and Australia. Launched in January, it moved over 20,000kg of parcel freight in its first six months.At the heart of Yojee’s service offering is “autonomous synchromodal transport”, what Mr Clarke dubs “rapid logistics” – a real-time algorithm that can perform 1,250,000,000 pieces of analysis in less than three seconds.This translates to optimising 400 jobs and 5,000 vehicles in under a minute, automatically assigning deliveries to drivers and ensuring the fastest routes are taken.AI ‘chatbots’ have also been introduced to handle many of the sales, customer services and operational tasks, which allows e-commerce companies to book deliveries without direct human contact.“The system starts to learn how you operate and then the AI runs your logistics for you and further optimises your assets and empty capacity,” Mr Clarke said.“It’s a bit like a ‘brokerage 2.0’, whereby everything is automated and all modes are linked up for resource planning and optimisation.“We’re able to provide a system that drops in on top of any type of logistics company with moving assets and optimise that company – any empty capacity is offered back to the wider network,” he added.Yojee’s plug-and-play capability is being utilised in Cambodia where it has signed up Post Media, the country’s largest print media organisation.“They’re probably the most efficient nationwide delivery network in Cambodia, but they’re getting lfewer newspapers in their vehicles.“We went to them and said you could be the best logistics company in the country if we drop our software on top. Suddenly you’ve got this digital express delivery network ready to go,” said Mr Clarke.As well as managing last-mile, Yojee has the capability to optimise all landside freight movements further up the supply chain, from the port gate onward. It also plans to expand into cross-border logistics, an area Mr Clarke said was “begging for” AI-enabled efficiencies.“AI is not used properly in cross-border logistics yet and even the container yards are not using it to manage those movements. There’s no resource planning between all the different segments in that supply chain, so there’s so much opportunity for efficiency growth through technology.”Yojee uses blockchain to create an indisputable record for every freight transaction, including GPS data, communications and status updates.“It also serves to build a reputation for all participants in the global supply chain, where the more jobs you do the system rates you higher and you have a better understanding of who is a good partner to use in different countries if you haven’t worked there before. It creates a sense of trust and truth and reputation,” said Mr Clarke.Blockchain encryption also allows logistics companies to partner together while safeguarding data and intellectual property. For example, with less-than-container-loads, companies can “share only the information that needs sharing with the people who need to know,” according to Mr Clarke.“So you can see where your items are in the wider scheme of things but not everything that is in that container,” he added.He claimed the company was seeking to help develop the supply chain industry, rather than revolutionise it.“We want to use our software to optimise as opposed to trying to disrupt. There’s some really good operators in logistics and people have potentially optimised it to the absolute maximum in terms of human decision-making.“But there’s a whole heap of new efficiencies that can be created with a system that works across the different sections of the supply chain using AI and machine learning, because if you can manage the item and plan the future resources, there’s so many efficiencies you can create with proper planning and decision making that take into account the future steps, and not just what’s best at a specific point in time,” he said.last_img read more

News / Global Shippers Forum renews attack on EC Block Exemption Regulation

first_imgPhoto 146413051 © Tonyv3112 – Dreamstime.com By Gavin van Marle 26/03/2021 The Global Shippers Forum (GSF) has renewed lobbying the European Commission’s competition directorate to take a closer look at the liner shipping industry.A year ago, almost to the day, the EC granted container lines another four years of exemption from its cartel competition laws under the Block Exemption Regulation (BER), under which container lines are allowed to share operational data and form shipping alliances.The GSF said the enormous rise in freight rates, coupled with all the other container supply chain issues, forced regulators from China, the US and South Korea to renew scrutiny of the sector, while “the EU has remained silent, yet four of the biggest shipping lines in the world fall within its jurisdiction”.GSF chairman James Hookham added: “Shippers feel sidelined by the granting of block exemptions and other anti-trust protections.“Their rights to a fair and open market have effectively been rejected in favour of greater supply-side efficiency and relief from the costs and ‘hassle’ of checking compliance with normal competition rules.“It is not unreasonable to expect that these exceptional privileges are kept under close review, especially during times of unprecedented market turbulence.”But, he said: “The commission has adopted a ‘legislate and forget’ approach and, seemingly, abandoned shippers and other users of shipping services, such as freight forwarders and port operators, to the fate of a deliberately distorted market.“Given the dependence of European trade on global container shipping services, this ‘supervisory deficit’ needs to be corrected.”The GSF has put forward a three-pronged “Data-Triggers-Meetings” matrix it would like the EC adopt, and which it claims would align European regulators with their counterparts in the US Federal Maritime Commission and China’s Ministry of Commerce.The matrix comprises: equipping itself with sufficient market data to be able to monitor the behaviour of the market; establishing performance thresholds that cover key service parameters, such as capacity, rates and reliability, and which will trigger further investigations if they are breached; and launch more frequent consultations with the industry’s stakeholders and representatives to understand the factors and experiences of ‘consumers’ of shipping line services, given its decision to abjure their rights to the protections otherwise enshrined in the EU treaties, similar to the FMC’s fact-finding missions.Mr Hookham added: “As I speak, all those involved in world trade are waiting to see just how damaging the closure of the Suez Canal will become to schedules, service and shipping rates.“With these additional factors yet to play out, it is vital that competition regulators engage closely with this market to monitor the consequences of the special privileges they have granted it.”last_img read more

We break down Macklemore’s new song about opioids, line by line

first_img Rapper Macklemore has released a new song, “Drug Dealer,” about prescription painkillers and other addictive drugs. Glenn Hunt/Getty Images In the latest sign of how the opioid crisis is permeating popular culture, the rapper Macklemore this week put out a remarkable new song about prescription painkillers and other addictive drugs.Titled “Drug Dealer,” the song parcels out blame for an opioid crisis that kills 78 Americans a day, up fourfold since 1999. It forcefully calls out Congress (as doing the business of billionaire chiefs of pharmaceutical companies), drug companies (including OxyContin manufacturer Purdue Pharma), and doctors who prescribe potent painkillers and enable refill after refill. (In the song, featured artist Ariana DeBoo refers to a doctor as “my drug dealer” who “had the plug from Big Pharma”).Macklemore, it’s worth noting, has spoken publicly about his own experience abusing the opioid painkillers OxyContin and Percocet. He released the song in conjunction with this week’s television premiere of an MTV documentary in which he interviews President Obama about the opioid epidemic.advertisement “Subs” is a reference to Suboxone, an opioid medication that’s used to treat opioid addiction. It’s become a key tool in combatting the opioid crisis; the Obama administration over the summer raised a prescribing cap to widen access to Suboxone and other buprenorphine medications.But the drug has also been abused in and of itself, fueled by a vibrant black market and cash-only clinics that dole out the pills without proper counseling. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention does not tally deaths caused by these treatments for addiction, but there have been plenty of reports of deadly overdoses from Suboxone.Still, many addiction experts say the bottom line is that Suboxone saves far more lives than it takes.The whole while, these billionaires, they caked up Paying out Congress so we take their drugs Murderers who will never face the judgeHey, look, a (blistering) reference to federal lobbying made it into a rap song.The makers of prescription painkillers wield significant clout on Capitol Hill and in statehouses all over the country. Over the past decade, they spent more than $880 million on federal and state lobbying, often seeking to block measures meant to curb the opioid crisis. That’s more than eight times what the gun lobby spent over the same period, according to a recent investigation from the Associated Press and the Center for Public Integrity.Executives at two of the companies that have been blamed for fueling the opioid crisis — John Kapoor of Insys Therapeutics and members of the Sackler family of Purdue Pharma — are indeed billionaires.And we dancin’ to a song about our face goin’ numb But I seen homies turn gray, noses draining blood I could’ve been gone, out 30s, faded in that tub“30s” is a reference to what has become among the most vexing street drugs in the last few years: pale blue oxycodone pills, in a 30-milligram dose.The opioid tablets typically go for $20 to $30 a pop on the black market, and people who get hooked later often turn to heroin. Law enforcement officials have recently reported a disturbing trend: Fake “30s” that look like oxycodone but actually contain far more deadly opioids, such as heroin or fentanyl.That’s Prince, Michael and Whitney, that’s Amy, Ledger and Pimp C That’s Yams, that’s DJ AM God damn they’re making a killingMacklemore’s recitation of the litany of celebrities whose deaths have been linked to prescription drug and alcohol use is a familiar one.The most recent such example, and perhaps the most potent symbol of the opioid epidemic, is the musician Prince, whose autopsy indicated that he accidentally overdosed last spring on the powerful painkiller fentanyl. Prescription opioids were also implicated in the overdose deaths, spread out over the past decade, of the hip-hop executive known as ASAP Yams, the DJ known as DJ AM, the actor Heath Ledger, and the rapper known as Pimp C.Alcohol or other non-opioid prescription drugs were blamed in the deaths of the singers Whitney Houston, Amy Winehouse, and Michael Jackson.Now it’s getting attention ’cause Sara, Katey and Billy But this shit’s been going on from Seattle out to South Philly It just moved about the city And spread out to the ‘burbs Now it’s everybody’s problem, got a nation on the vergeMacklemore’s message here — that the opioid epidemic does not discriminate in the type of communities it ravages — is strikingly similar in vision (if not in language) to the alarm being sounded by the public health community and the Obama administration.Just last week, in fact, the White House hosted Macklemore for a panel discussion on the crisis with federal drug czar Michael Botticelli.While drug abuse has historically been clustered in urban areas, it’s clear that this epidemic doesn’t fit that pattern, though there’s little good data about the breakdown. Suburban and rural communities in many swing states, including Ohio and New Hampshire, face few more pressing issues than how to fight the epidemic.The issue hasn’t come up so far in the presidential debates, though voters in some of the most devastated communities don’t think either Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump will save them.Take Actavis off the market, jack the price up on the syrup But Purdue Pharma’s ’bout to move that workHere’s a somewhat opaque reference to a prescription opioid cough syrup, prominently abused in the hip-hop community a few years ago as a way of getting high. In 2014, the drug’s maker, then known as Actavis, pulled it from the market in response to the abuse, a move that sent the street price of the suddenly scarce drug through the roof.And then, right before the chorus begins, there’s a reference to Purdue Pharma, which has been vilified for sowing the seeds of the opioid crisis by aggressively marketing OxyContin. My drug dealer was a doctorVolume 90%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard ShortcutsEnabledDisabledPlay/PauseSPACEIncrease Volume↑Decrease Volume↓Seek Forward→Seek Backward←Captions On/OffcFullscreen/Exit FullscreenfMute/UnmutemSeek %0-9 facebook twitter Email Linkhttps://www.statnews.com/2016/10/13/macklemore-opioid-addiction/?jwsource=clCopied EmbedCopiedLive00:0000:0700:07  Dom Smith/STAT My drug dealer was a doctor, doctor Had the plug from Big Pharma, Pharma He said that he would heal me, heal me But he only gave me problems, problems My drug dealer was a doctor, doctor Had the plug from Big Pharma, Pharma I think he trying to kill me, kill me He tried to kill me for a dollar, dollarThe song’s haunting chorus, with vocals from DeBoo, holds doctors accountable for their role in fueling the opioid crisis. Research has demonstrated that widespread overprescribing of opioids for routine medical conditions got many people hooked and sent them down the path towards heroin.It’s clear that pharma companies targeted doctors with aggressive sales pitches to get them to prescribe potent painkillers. Some of the marketing material deliberately downplayed the addictive nature of the drugs. A trove of pharmaceutical company documents uncovered by STAT, for instance, shows how sales representatives used dinners, gifts, and even doughnuts to sway doctors to switch patients over to OxyContin.And these devils they keep on talkin’ to me They screamin’ “open the bottle,” I wanna be at peace My hand is gripping that throttle, I’m running out of speed Tryin’ close my eyes but I keep sweatin’ through these sheets, through these sheets Four horseman, they won’t let me forget I wanna forge a prescription, cause doctor I need some more of it When morphine and heroin is more of your budget I said I’d never use a needle, but sure, fuck it I’m caught up, I’m on one, I’m nauseous No options, exhausted This is not what I started Walkin’ carcass, I lost everything I wanted My blinds drawn, too gone to leave this apartmentMacklemore’s harrowing description of what it’s like physically to be dependent on opioids speaks to just how excruciating it is to get clean. Another survivor described the experience to STAT as “like you’re living in hell.”Forged opioid prescriptions have also exacerbated the epidemic. Though there doesn’t appear to be good data on their prevalence, it’s widespread enough to have sparked interest in electronic prescription and spurred drug stores to adopt stricter policies to avoid filling such prescriptions.Macklemore also gestures at some of the ways that prescription painkiller addiction can escalate. Take his reference to heroin: 80 percent of new users report that they got started on prescription painkillers. As for injection needles, sharing them can put users at risk of HIV. Ain’t no coming back from this percocetVolume 90%Press shift question mark to access a list of keyboard shortcutsKeyboard ShortcutsEnabledDisabledPlay/PauseSPACEIncrease Volume↑Decrease Volume↓Seek Forward→Seek Backward←Captions On/OffcFullscreen/Exit FullscreenfMute/UnmutemSeek %0-9 facebook twitter Email Linkhttps://www.statnews.com/2016/10/13/macklemore-opioid-addiction/?jwsource=clCopied EmbedCopiedLive00:0000:1100:11  Dom Smith/STAT Death certificate signed the prenup Ain’t no coming back from this Percocet Actavis, Ambien, Adderall, Xanax binge Best friends with the thing that’s killing me Enemies with my best friend, there’s no healing me Refilling these, refilling these They say it’s death, death Institutions and DOCs So God grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change Courage to change the things I can And the wisdom to know the difference And the wisdom to know the differenceWhile much of the concern is focused on opioids, addicts often use them in combination with other types of drugs — worsening the consequences. Sedative drugs like Xanax, known to scientists as benzodiazepines, are involved in nearly a third of accidental overdose deaths from prescription opioids.The prescription refills that Macklemore references are another key driver of the problem. A study last year found that more than 90 percent of patients continued to get refills even after overdosing on opioid medications.Five northeastern states have passed legislation aimed at limiting the number of pills doctors can prescribe. (Preliminary findings also suggest that increased awareness among doctors is helping stem prescriptions).Macklemore concludes with a reference to the Serenity Prayer, which became a popular fixture at Alcoholics Anonymous meetings and has since migrated to recovery groups for opioid addiction. His new documentary, in fact, includes a scene at the Seattle recovery group that Macklemore attends, where the group recites the prayer. By Rebecca Robbins Oct. 13, 2016 Reprints Read on for STAT’s annotations of Macklemore’s lyrics — which are peppered with references to the faces and drivers of the epidemic — and the backstory on the problem that’s “got a nation on the verge.”They said it wasn’t a gateway drug My homie was takin’ subs and he ain’t wake upadvertisement Tags musicopioidsPurdue Pharma HealthWe break down Macklemore’s new song about opioids, line by line last_img read more

More opioids were prescribed here per person than anywhere else in the U.S.

first_img [email protected] By Andrew Joseph July 7, 2017 Reprints With that in mind, Martinsville still stands out. Even the jurisdictions ranked No. 2 (Norton, Va.) and 3 (Campbell County, Tenn.) on the CDC’s list trailed by comfortable margins — with about 3,375 and 3,300 milligram equivalents prescribed, respectively.(The report generally examined data at the county level, but Virginia has a number of cities like Martinsville that are not part of counties and are viewed as their own entities in federal studies.)advertisement Clay, Tenn.3002.02797.7 Andrew Joseph Walker, Ala.4079.32813.3 Campbell, Tenn.2305.03304.3 General Assignment Reporter Andrew covers a range of topics, from addiction to public health to genetics. Claiborne, Tenn.2581.72807.6 Jurisdictions2010 Per Capita MME*2015 Per Capita MME About the Author Reprints Norton City, Va.2647.53373.5 Martinsville, Va.5201.14086.9center_img @DrewQJoseph Martinsville, Va., is home to fewer than 13,500 people. Steve C./Creative Commons Pickett, Tenn.5542.62742.4 Wyoming, W.Va.2699.82660.1 From Washington, D.C., head southwest into Virginia for nearly five hours and put yourself due north from Greensboro, N.C. There you will find Martinsville, Va., where more opioids were prescribed per person in 2015 than any other jurisdiction in the United States.Clinicians in Martinsville, home to fewer than 13,500 people, prescribed almost 4,090 morphine milligram equivalents per person. The national average was 640 milligram equivalents per person.That contrast underlines the dramatic differences in opioid prescribing across the country as health officials try to tackle a national epidemic. A report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week found that while prescribing fell nationwide from 2010 to 2015, places that prescribed the most opioids were still doling out drugs at rates six times higher than the lowest tier of communities.advertisement Carbon, Utah2838.02817.0 HealthMore opioids were prescribed here per person than anywhere else in the U.S. *MME = morphine milligram equivalents.And from 2010 to 2015, Martinsville, like half the jurisdictions studied by the CDC, actually saw a decrease in opioids prescriptions, from 5,200 milligram equivalents per person to 4,090. And it’s likely that prescriptions have continued to fall since then.Since 2015 — the last year the CDC had data for — the agency and hospitals around the country have launched initiatives to rein in opioid prescribing. The CDC released guidelines for prescribing opioids for pain last year, and a Virginia hospital association came out with its own plan last April. Clinicians at Memorial Hospital in Martinsville also started working to reduce prescriptions in the middle of 2016, according to WSLS, a local news station.Representatives at the hospital as well as as the local health department were not immediately available for comment. Tags addictionopioidspublic health Dr. Anne Schuchat, who was serving as acting CDC director until Friday, told reporters that the overprescription of opioids has led to addictions and left people vulnerable to overdoses and deaths.That’s a pattern seen around the country, and recent state data from Virginia show how pervasive the problem has become in Martinsville.STATIn the city and adjacent Henry County, the rate of overdoses leading to emergency department visits was the highest in the state in January, at 32 per 100,000 people. Martinsville’s monthly overdose rate has fluctuated over the months, but it has generally been among the highest rates in the state.The demographics of Martinsville also reflect some — though not all — of the factors that the CDC researchers found were associated with high levels of opioid prescriptions. Data show more opioids being prescribed in areas with more white residents, higher unemployment rates, a greater concentration of doctors and dentists, and higher rates of disability and diabetes. The researchers estimated that the factors accounted for about a third of the prescribing differences seen among counties.Like many of the top prescribing places, Martinsville is a “micropolitan” area, essentially a big town or small city. It also has a higher unemployment rate than the average in Virginia, and a relatively high rate of people on disability. But its population is about 50 percent white and 46 percent black.There are a number of caveats to consider. The CDC data were based on the location of pharmacies where opioids were picked up, so people who lived elsewhere but filled their prescriptions in Martinsville could have contributed to its high rate. Many counties in the country also did not have data for the CDC to analyze.Top 10 places where opioids prescribing was highest in 2015 Galax, Va.2557.63119.4last_img read more

Why does my health insurer sabotage my efforts to manage my diabetes?

first_img Please enter a valid email address. Privacy Policy Reed Saxon/AP @kylahgklinge “At least I don’t need glasses,” I joked to my then boyfriend, now husband. He was just starting to look at medical schools. I’d be his first patient.advertisement Related: Related: It was type 1, an incurable autoimmune disease. A packet I was handed in the hospital outlined how every part of me — nerves, heart, brain, skin, all — would be damaged by the excess blood sugar scraping through my vessels like microscopic shards of glass. I was told I would have to endlessly count carbohydrates, test my blood sugar, and inject insulin to prevent the disease’s serious complications and early death. I was told that this would be a lifelong effort. In the ‘diabetes belt,’ a small town grapples with growth of the world’s largest insulin maker First OpinionWhy does my health insurer sabotage my efforts to manage my diabetes? A few years ago, my pump, which provides round-the-clock insulin, failed without warning. The silent lack of the vital hormone had rapidly and unexpectedly driven me into diabetic ketoacidosis, a dangerous state in which the body burns fat for fuel, creating a wellspring of acid that rose into my chest, even while my blood sugar remained normal.From an emergency room cot, I watched a mass of hazy figures form just beyond my bay. “Non-compliant diabetic,” a doctor said to his team, glancing at me from the hall.My husband, a surgery resident by then, overheard as he was rushing in. “Not her fault,” he corrected. “She just needs help.”Especially against a backdrop of relentless effort to stay healthy, the assumption of culpability can sting. But the issue is much more important than feelings, especially now. We’re on the cusp of a true revolution in diabetes, with the emergence of artificial pancreas systems that “close the loop” between an insulin pump and a glucose monitoring system. They represent our best shot at exponentially easier and longer lives. In a raw crypt beneath Our Lady of the Conception of the Capuchins church in Rome stretches an exuberant display of skeletal remains. The piled skulls, fanned hip bones, and arched spines — remnants of centuries of Capuchin friars — bear a warning. Printed on a sign in three languages, it reads: “What you are now, we once were. What we are now, you shall be.”I was studying abroad when I faced and promptly buried that grim exhortation in a lemon gelato. I was athletic, healthy, and 21. Surely I would never be them. My body was mine to control.But two years later, just before my college graduation, odd symptoms began to surface: blurred vision, fatigue, an insatiable thirst. I hoped I might just need glasses, but the diagnosis came with the swift lance of a finger to measure the sugar in my blood: 900. “You know you have diabetes, don’t ya, dear?” the nurse said.advertisementcenter_img “It’s disheartening to have an insurance company literally sabotage my efforts. It’s horrible that they’ll cover an ambulance ride, eye injections, or kidney dialysis, but not the things that will help me avoid them.” “We’ll figure it out,” he said.And we did. We learned how to tap bubbles out of insulin, how to calculate boluses of this vital hormone, how to count carbs, and more. Nearly 15 years later, it’s been more than 30,000 finger pricks and 1,700 site changes for my inserted insulin pump. It’s been waiting — for low blood sugars to rise, for high blood sugars to fall. It has been worry and strength. It has, by providence and by work, been otherwise good health so far.I knew it would be hard. I did not know it would feel, sometimes, like sprinting in water. But what I never would have believed is how fiercely I have to work to get the chance to fight at all.Even with good insurance, I’ve spent more hours untangling the inscrutable details of my policies over the years than I’d want to tally, just like so many others with chronic illnesses. I’ve come to understand medical versus pharmacy benefits, limitation overrides, essential health benefits. When my insurer denied coverage of the number of test strips I needed to maintain good control of my blood sugar, it took endless calls and a deep dive into the policy’s write-up to uncover what I was due. When my insulin pump tubing kept detaching in the middle of the night, I had to track down the vice president of quality assurance — unearthing his email from a posted company memo — to get it replaced.Those of us with type 1 diabetes are lucky to be living now in a country where we have access to these medicines and technologies at all, of course. And it may seem trivial, this time spent on hold, asking for managers, delving into tiny text. We all do this sort of thing, after all, with various services and businesses — cellphone providers, airlines, cable companies. But there is something deeply galling about toiling for the right to stave off the loss of your limbs and eyesight. These hours are precious when you have a chronic disease that already takes too many of them.I’m the first to admit that I am fortunate. Diabetes groups and message boards are full of stories of people who are denied basic care or the technologies to help them manage their disease, of drained bank accounts, of rationing. Even with the Affordable Care Act’s essential protections, nearly 1 in 4 chronically ill insured Americans are denied prescribed treatments. Insulin prices are soaring. People with diabetes spend more than $9,000 a year on caring for their disease.I’ve met people with diabetes who are forced to string out their use of lifesaving insulin, to forgo glucose testing, to skip the treatments and screenings required to stay healthy. Some have died doing this. Newsletters Sign up for First Opinion A weekly digest of our opinion column, with insight from industry experts. “It’s disheartening to have an insurance company literally sabotage my efforts,” a friend with type 1 diabetes recently messaged me. “It’s horrible that they’ll cover an ambulance ride, eye injections, or kidney dialysis, but not the things that will help me avoid them.”These restrictions are about the growing demands on an imperfect health care system. They are about money. But it seems they’re also about the boundary between the healthy and ill, the us and them, the blameworthy and faultless.Scholars have shown that treating the chronically ill as “others” — deviant or different from the “normal population” — directly informs health care policy. During last year’s health care debate, from the frank denial of coverage for pre-existing conditions in the House’s version of the bill to the Senate’s back door into the same, the current of “othering” was there. Republican Rep. Mo Brooks of Alabama captured the zeitgeist when speaking on high-risk pools: “They will reduce the cost to those people who lead good lives,” he said.That kind of vanity can infect even those charged with our care. Tags diabetesinsurance Leave this field empty if you’re human: In some ways, however, these miracle technologies make us more vulnerable than ever to how we are seen and what we are granted. Coverage restrictions — sometimes almost nonsensical ones — already abound for less costly technologies. More fundamentally, basic coverage of those with pre-existing conditions is once again threatened. Where does that leave us?Health care is hugely complex, and addressing its shortcomings is a Herculean task. But in that effort, it seems stunningly myopic to trust that less care and more profit will mean that people with diabetes and other chronic illnesses will figure it out, somehow, on our own.If we have to scrounge even harder for every ounce of our care, we will be more ill, more expensive, less productive, less alive. People with type 1 diabetes need a real cure. In the meantime, we need access first to insulin and second to transformative technologies without a fight.I am grateful. I am hopeful. I am fearful. I remember the hubris: Those bones are them; this body is you. I know its self-protective power. Maybe you need to teeter on the edge between to know its lie.Kylah Goodfellow Klinge is a biomedical communications consultant whose clients include diabetes treatment and research organizations. Kylah Goodfellow Klinge About the Author Reprints By Kylah Goodfellow Klinge June 19, 2018 Reprints More state lawmakers are pushing transparency bills for diabetes drugs last_img read more

In Pictures: ‘The Big Hello!’ a huge success in Laois

first_img Here are all of Wednesday’s Laois GAA results By Alan Hartnett – 14th May 2019 Twitter GAA Twitter GAA 2020 U-15 ‘B’ glory for Ballyroan-Abbey following six point win over Killeshin Pinterest The Big Hello! community weekend was certainly a success in Laois.The weekend of the May Bank Holiday was one of fun, food, colour, sports, chats and lots of tea and cakes.It was a weekend for neighbours and committees to come together to build relationships, and reflect on the tremendous work of our voluntary community.The imagination of various community groups throughout the County was funded by Department of Rural Community Development and supplemented by Laois County Council to ensure the maximum amount of community events could benefit from The Big Hello!The success of this initiative was a result of local communities coming together to plan events that work best for their community.The Big Hello speaks to everyone in an inclusive and open way.Photographer Denis Byrne travelled all around the county on the May Bank Holiday weekend.He captured over 40 brilliant pictures from Stradbally, Abbeyleix, Camross, Mountrath, Timahoe, The Swan, Portlaoise, Durrow and Ballyroan which you can check out below:Pictured are Dave Monaghan, Pat Dooley, Chair and Gerry Daly, Sec of the Droimnin Retirement Residents Association Stradbally Photo Denis ByrneGreen fingers at The Big Hello in Droimnin Retirement Village as Residents Nuala Monaghan, Jo Robbins and Freda Parker plant shrubs for The Big Hello Photo Denis ByrneEnjoying the sunshine at The Big Hello were Droimnin Village Residents Association members Pat Dooley, Chair with Derek Collins and Frank Parker Photo Denis ByrnePictured are the Droimnin Retirement Residents Association Stradbally Pat Dooley, Derek Collins, Gerry Daly, Dave Monaghan, Veronica Dooley, Freda Parker, Frank Fleet, Jo Robbins, Frank Parker, Colette Meleady, Nicolas Keary and Nuala Monaghan Photo Denis ByrnePizza time at Corran Na Noir Abbeyleix Photo Denis ByrnePictured are the Corran Na Noir Residents Committee Catherine and Darren Kearney, Ashling Rothwell and Steven Houlihan Photo Denis ByrneA happy tiger at The Big Hello Kayden Flaherty in Corran Na Noir Abbeyleix Photo Denis ByrneJames O’Keefe setting out at the Big Hello in Camross on Saturday Photo Denis ByrneAva Griffin, Katelyn, Lizzie Abby Ryan enjoying The Big Hello at Camross on Saturday Photo Denis ByrneAt The Big Hellon in Camross were Bryan, Fionn and Lyndsey McNamara with Margurite Walsh and Josie Delaney Photo Denis ByrnePictured at The Big Hello in Camross were Phill Duggan, Mattie Collier and Pat Lalor, Chair Camross Vintage Club Photo Denis ByrneA thumbs up for The Big Hello at Camross from bikers Hugo O’Neill, Lukas Dowling, Aaron Bredin and Ciaran Palmer O’Keefe Photo Denis ByrnePictured at the Poets Cottage for The Big Hello were Camross Parish Development Association Left to Right: Aidan Hynes, Chair Johanna McDonald, Packie Cuddy, Michael and Sheila Lalor with Kevin Conroy Photo Denis ByrneLooking very colourful for The Big Hello were sisters Anna and Ewa Nowosiak Photo Denis ByrnePictured are Mountrath Community Forum Committee: Andrea Deering, Geraldine Moore, Gina Reidy, Martin Meade, Andrea Delaney, Lucy Conroy and Edwina Cuddy Photo Denis ByrneElisha Delaney about to have her water melon pop at Mountrath on Sunday Photo Denis ByrneSarah Tynan with Edwina, Maura and Mia CuddySport for all at the Big Hello in Bill Delaney Park Stradbally on Sunday Photo Denis ByrneAlice Laffan performing at The Big Hello in Stradbally Photo Denis ByrnePictured enjoying the sunshine for the Big Hello were Jamie, Carol, Kate, Ben and Gary Kavanagh Photo Denis ByrneJohn, Sarah, Joe and Rosalyn LarkinSport for all at the Big Hello in Bill Delaney Park Stradbally on Sunday Photo Denis ByrneCiara Woulf, Faith Carroll and Emer RamsbottomPictured are Donal O’Shea, Stradbally Development Association, Cllr. Tom Mulhall and Brenda Corbet, Laois County Council at the Big Hello in Stradbally on Sunday Photo Denis ByrneThe Walsh familyTaking aim at Timahoe for The Big Hello was Eabha Daly Photo Denis ByrnePhoto Denis ByrneReady to roll at Timahoe were Cormac and David Kelly and Thomas Ramsbottom Photo Denis ByrneSunny smiles at Timahoe for The Big Hello from Niamh Dundon, Karen Doyle and Ava Kelly Photo Denis ByrneEnjoying the sunshine at Timahoe for The Big Hello Photo Denis ByrneAt the Swan on Sunday for The Big Hello were Joe Brennan, Pat Kelly, Tommy Kelly, Margaret Cahill, Joe, Ryan and Anne Brennan Photo Denis ByrneEnjoying aAt the Swan on Sunday for The Big Hello were Jake Gohery, Bobby Rowan, Harry Gorman and Charlie Crehan Photo Denis ByrneFace painting at Hawthorne Drive Portlaoise for The Big Hello Photo Denis ByrnePictured are Sean Murphy, Rosaleen Redmond, Dom Dunne, Gerry FLanagan, Pauline Madigan, Vanessa Keane and Ray Malone, Chair Hawnthorne Residents Committee at their Big Hello event on the bank holiday monday Photo Denis ByrnePictured palnting a cherry tree at Hawnthorn drive were the Flaherty Family Photo Denis ByrnePictured are Sean Fleming, Brendan Phelan, James Kelly, Brian Oglivie, Finbar O’Donovan, John King, Charles Flanagan, Liam O’Neill and Ollie ClooneyAbout to cut the ribbon to officially open Laois Kayak and Canoe Club at Durrow was Paul Donnelly, President Canoeing Ireland, Brian Oglivie P.R.O and Finbar O’Donovan, Chair of Laois Kayak and Canoe Club Durrow Photo: Denis ByrneZane Polaskova and Matt McGrathHaving fun at The Big Hello in Ballyroan Abbey G.A.A on Monday were Lesley Knowles, Rosie O’Donnell, Frances Quinn, Jules and Ruby Ellen Fitzpatrick Photo Denis ByrneAbout to chow down were Lily, Sonia and Lorraine Gleeson Photo Denis ByrneRuairi Dunne and Mark McDonaldTrevor Phelan, Barry Walsh, Noel Delaney, Jim Gee, Simon, Tara and Doireann DelaneyA Big Hello from Marie Davis on keyboards at Emo Community Hall Photo Denis ByrnePictured are Back: Paddy Booth, V.C Julia Booth Assitant Sec, Tom Scully, Chair, Maureen Byrne, Sec and Martha Morrin Treas. Photo Denis ByrneTom Scully about to start proceeddings at Emo Community Hall Photo Denis ByrneSEE ALSO – A legend of Laois retail celebrates 40 years in business Facebook Previous articleFive finalists for Laois Puppy of the Year have been revealedNext articleDeaths in Laois – Wednesday, May 15, 2019 Alan HartnettStradbally native Alan Hartnett is a graduate of Knockbeg College who has worked in the local and national media since 2008. Alan has a BA in Economics, Politics and Law and an MA in Journalism from DCU. His happiest moment was when Jody Dillon scored THAT goal in the Laois senior football final in 2016. In Pictures: ‘The Big Hello!’ a huge success in Laois Kelly and Farrell lead the way as St Joseph’s claim 2020 U-15 glory GAA RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR Home Lifestyle In Pictures: ‘The Big Hello!’ a huge success in Laois LifestyleOut and About Pinterest TAGSThe Big Hello! Facebook WhatsApp WhatsApplast_img read more

Joint Message on Passing of 10 Years Since Great East Japan Earthquake

first_imgJoint Message on Passing of 10 Years Since Great East Japan Earthquake The White HouseTen years ago, the Great East Japan Earthquake touched off a trio of disasters that claimed countless lives and caused immense suffering and damage for the people of Japan. On this solemn occasion, we remember all those who were lost, and we extend our deepest condolences to the families and communities who were devastated and who are still mourning such an immense tragedy.When the catastrophic earthquake, tsunami, and nuclear power plant accident hit, Japan’s Self-Defense Forces and U.S. Forces immediately sprang into action, joining together to perform search-and-rescue operations and to provide supplies and transportation to those in need. Japan and the United States worked hand-in-hand to alleviate suffering and to respond to the accident at the Tokyo Electric Power Company’s Fukushima Daiichi Nuclear Power Plant, with the aid of experts, goods, and equipment from many countries. After the catastrophe, U.S. and Japanese forces also worked in lockstep to restore operations at Sendai Airport, which also served as a hub to distribute over two million tons of relief supplies. And our peoples stepped up as well, with American and Japanese citizens working together at the grassroots level to contribute to Japan’s recovery and reconstruction. Five months after the disasters, then-Vice President Biden visited Natori and Sendai to see the relief efforts firsthand, as well as the incredible strength and resilience of the Japanese people. Then, as now, our joint efforts hold a special place in the hearts and memories of both our peoples-a testament to the special bond and the unshakable friendship that is the U.S.-Japanese alliance.We must not forget that, even after ten years, many of those affected continue to struggle in the wake of the disaster. In support of these individuals and to honor who we lost, Japan and the United States will continue to move forward shoulder-to-shoulder as “tomodachi” (friends) to finish the reconstruction of the Tōhoku region and to realize a better future for us all.SUGA YoshihideJoseph R. Biden Jr.Prime Minister of JapanPresident of the United States of America /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:accident, america, american, earthquake, Electric, Fukushima, Government, Japan, Japanese, Minister, power plant, President, Prime Minister, resilience, self-defense, Tokyo, United States, White Houselast_img read more

COVID-19 tenant reprieve extended

first_imgCOVID-19 tenant reprieve extended Australian GreensSupport measures for Canberra renters facing financial hardship due to the COVID-19 pandemic have been extended for a further two months.Tenants who were rent arrears due to the economic impact of the pandemic will now have until 30 June 2021 to repay any outstanding debt. The deadline for the payments to be made was initially set to run out at the end of January but was extended until April and now further extended until June.Landlords will not be able to evict tenants in arrears during the two-month extension; however, renters will still have to pay their rent as it falls due during the transition period.The transitional measures also allow COVID-19 impacted tenants in fixed-term leases to end their leases early and without penalty if they need to move due to a change in their circumstances.“We know the past year has been really tough on ACT residents who have lost their incomes and livelihoods due to COVID-19,” Attorney-General Shane Rattenbury said. “Many Canberrans were also thrown into poverty when the Federal Government cut JobSeeker payments last month.“We want to give tenants who are experiencing financial hardship more time to get back on their feet, repay their debts and stay in their homes, which is why we have provided a further two-month extension.“We want to ensure that those Canberrans who are now starting to find their feet after a difficult 2020 are not knocked back over by having to pay back their debt all at once.“At the end of the moratorium period tenants will still be required to pay this back, but with JobSeeker payments ending, these two extra months to settle their debts can make a world of difference for vulnerable Canberrans.”Executive Director of Better Renting Joel Dignam said extending the reprieve will make a huge difference to ACT residents who lost incomes due to the pandemic.“This is good news for the thousands of ACT renters who are still coming to terms with the effects of COVID-19,” Mr Dignam said.“Canberra’s rental market is currently incredibly tough, with a lot of competition for a small number of vacant properties. These support measures will help those tenants still recovering from COVID-19.”The extension of the transitional measures also aligns with the ACT Government supporting landlords who have reduced rent for tenants impacted by COVID-19 by at least 25%, through land tax and rates rebates. This support is available until 30 June 2021. /Public Release. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. View in full here. Why?Well, unlike many news organisations, we have no sponsors, no corporate or ideological interests. We don’t put up a paywall – we believe in free access to information of public interest. Media ownership in Australia is one of the most concentrated in the world (Learn more). Since the trend of consolidation is and has historically been upward, fewer and fewer individuals or organizations control increasing shares of the mass media in our country. According to independent assessment, about 98% of the media sector is held by three conglomerates. This tendency is not only totally unacceptable, but also to a degree frightening). Learn more hereWe endeavour to provide the community with real-time access to true unfiltered news firsthand from primary sources. It is a bumpy road with all sorties of difficulties. We can only achieve this goal together. Our website is open to any citizen journalists and organizations who want to contribute, publish high-quality insights or send media releases to improve public access to impartial information. You and we have the right to know, learn, read, hear what and how we deem appropriate.Your support is greatly appreciated. All donations are kept completely private and confidential.Thank you in advance!Tags:Act, ACT Government, AusPol, Australia, Australian Greens, Canberra, covid-19, director, falls, Federal, federal government, Government, Impact, JobSeeker, land tax, market, pandemic, penalty, worldlast_img read more

Free Flow Wines Announces the First On-Tap Sparkling Wine and Sake…

first_imgAdvertisementEufloria Sparkling Wine from Banfi Vintners and Bushido ‘Way of the Warrior’ premium sake will soon be available in a kegNapa, CA, April 2, 2015—Free Flow Wines, the pioneer of premium wine on tap, today announced two new innovations in the beverage market: sparkling wine and sake are now available on tap. The two new brands available in a keg include Eufloria sparkling wines from Banfi Vintners and the new Bushido ‘Way of the Warrior’ sake. Bushido is a Junmai Genshu, or premium, undiluted sake produced by Vine Connections, a leading premium sake and wine importer, and Kizakura, an established Japanese brewery in Kyoto.“Eufloria sparkling wine and Bushido ‘Way of the Warrior’ sake are perfect examples of how innovative the beverages on tap industry can be,” said Free Flow Wines’ co-founder and CEO, Jordan Kivelstadt. “Our kegs maintain the quality of every beverage we keg and we have worked closely with both brands to ensure that these exciting new products exceed all quality standards.”Banfi Vintners will roll out the Eufloria sparkling wine nationwide in April. Their winemaker Nicolas Quille says,  “I have been working closely with Free Flow Wines for almost two years to perfect sparkling wine in a keg and I am proud to say that we have more than accomplished our goal with Eufloria. This is a great opportunity for bars and restaurants who’d like to sell sparkling wine by the glass as it solves the typical issue of waste due to bottles going flat.”Bushido ‘Way of the Warrior’ will be available nationally Fall 2015 with an exclusive California launch this spring. The first location to serve this sake on tap will be Chubby Noodle in San Francisco.“With the success of wine on tap in the market, we see a big opportunity for authentic Japanese sake to enter this cutting-edge space,” said Ed Lehrman, co-founder of Vine Connections. “Sake on tap is an exciting new opportunity not just for Asian restaurants, but for accounts like gastro-pubs. It is unique and forward-thinking in addition to being cost-effective and environmentally-friendly.”More than 3,900 locations nationwide are now offering wine and other products on tap and that number is rapidly increasing. For more details on kegging wine, sparkling, sake, or other beverages contact Free Flow Wines at [email protected] (415) 626-1215.About Free Flow WinesFree Flow Wines is the pioneer of premium wine on tap and delivers the world’s wine brands to the taps of restaurants and venues nationwide. Free Flow Wines’ kegging and logistics services have allowed the wine and hospitality industries to move away from bottles to a sustainable, environmentally friendly way of serving wine on tap, while maintaining wine integrity from the barrel to the tap. Free Flow Wines was founded in 2009 and has more than 220 wine brands as clients from Frog’s Leap in the Napa Valley, to 10 Span Vineyards in Santa Barbara and Banfi’s Aviatto from Alto Adige. Their clients’ wines are offered to a variety of restaurants, premium hotels, sports and entertainment venues nationwide. The company is located in Napa, California, and you can find them online at FreeFlowWines.com, on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Flickr @FreeFlowWine.Advertisement Facebook TAGSBanfi VintnersfeaturedFree Flow WinesWine on Tap Share Twitter Linkedin Home Industry News Releases Free Flow Wines Announces the First On-Tap Sparkling Wine and Sake Brands Industry News ReleasesSpirits BusinessWine BusinessFree Flow Wines Announces the First On-Tap Sparkling Wine and Sake Brands By Press Release – April 3, 2015 57 0 ReddIt Previous articleSonoma Wine Country Weekend Triples Local Contributions and Delivers Over Three Million Dollars to Charities from 2014 EventNext articleAfternoon Brief, April 3 Press Release Email Pinterestlast_img read more