Public Health News Roundup: March 12
Judge Strikes Down N.Y. City’s Sugary Drink Limit; Bloomberg to Appeal
“The loopholes in this rule effectively defeat the stated purpose of this rule,” wrote State Supreme Court Justice Milton Tingling when striking down New York City’s 16-ounce limit on sodas and other sugary drinks just hours before it was set to go into effect. He also called the law “arbitrary and capricious.” Still, Mayor Michael Bloomberg says he expects to win on appeal. “As far as we have come, there is one public health crisis that has grown worse and worse over the years, and that is obesity," he said at a news confernce. "Five thousand people will die of obesity this year in New York. The best science tells us that sugary drinks are a cause of obesity." Read more on obesity.
NFL, GE Partner in $60M Effort to Study and Prevent Brain Injuries
The National Football League and General Electric Co have announced a $60 million partnership to advance research into brain injuries while also developing new technologies to help limit injuries to athletes. It includes $40 million for research into imaging technologies and $20 million for researchers and businesses working on injury prevention, identification and management. The NFL has faced multiple lawsuits related to concussions, including a class action on behalf of 4,000 former players. "We're trying to do this with the best minds anywhere in the world," said GE Chairman and CEO Jeff Immelt at a news conference. Each year, U.S. emergency rooms see about 173,000 temporary brain injuries related to sports and recreation in people age 19 and under, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Read more on injury prevention.
Ovarian Cancer Patients Who Don’t Receive Recommended Treatment More Likely to Die in 5 Years
Ovarian cancer patients who do not received the treatment recommended by the National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) clinical practice guidelines—or as many as two-thirds of patients—have a 30 percent greater risk of dying within five years, according to new findings to be presented at the annual meeting of the Society of Gynecologic Oncology. The study found that low-volume hospitals that treat fewer ovarian cancer patients are less likely to follow the treatment guidelines. "The high-volume hospitals, which did 20 or more cases a year, and high-volume physicians, which did 10 or more a year, were significantly more likely to administer treatment that was adherent to NCCN guidelines," said Robert Bristow, MD, director of gynecologic oncology at the School of Medicine of the University of California, Irvine. According to the American Cancer Society, in the United States, approximately 22,000 new cases of ovarian cancer are diagnosed each year and 15,000 women die from the disease. Read more on cancer.