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Media Monitoring: 3rd – 9th December

By December 8, 2022No Comments

A new biomarker for detecting glymphatic system insufficiency

  • University of Barcelona researchers have discovered that malfunctions in the glymphatic system can be detected via wasteosomes
  • They show evidence that increased wasteosomes or starch bodies are a result of chronic failure of the glymphatic system
  • They found that brain regions which had the highest number of wasteosomes were often related to the drainage areas of the cleaning system


UKHSA publishes investigation findings following errors at the private Immensa lab

  • The UK Health Security Agency (UKHSA) has published findings of an investigation following errors at the private Immensa laboratory in Wolverhampton
  • UKHSA suspended testing at the laboratory on 12 October 2021 following reports of inaccurate results
  • The cause was the incorrect setting of the threshold levels for reporting positive and negative results of PCR samples for coronavirus (COVID-19) by staff in Immensa’s Wolverhampton laboratory
  • UKHSA estimated that this error could have led to around 39,000 results being incorrectly reported as negative when they should have been positive


NHS Monthly Diagnostics data for October 2022 can be found here

  • The total number of patients waiting six weeks or more from referral for one of the 15 key diagnostic tests at the end of October 2022 was 426,000. This was 27.5% of the total number of patients waiting at the end of the month.
  • Nationally, the operational standard of less than 1% of patients waiting six weeks or more was not met this month.
  • Compared with October 2021 the total number of patients waiting six weeks or more increased by 69,200 while the proportion of patients waiting six weeks or more increased by 2.5 percentage points.
  • The proportion of patients waiting six weeks or more at the end of a month has varied between 24.0% (February 2022) and 30.5% (August 2022).
  • The estimated average time that a patient had been waiting for a diagnostic test was 3.2 weeks at the end of October 2022.
  • There were 1,549,300 patients waiting for a key diagnostic test at the end of October 2022. This is an increase of 120,900 from October 2021.
  • A total of 2,055,400 diagnostic tests were undertaken in October 2022. This is an increase of 122,600 from October 2021.


UK’s NICE Says ‘Light Touch’ HTA Evaluation Will Support Innovation (PAYWALL)

  • The UK’s health technology assessment body recognizes that its traditional product evaluation processes are too slow for innovative medtech products
  • Its new “conditional recommendation” pathway aims to fix this


National University of Singapore develops new testing method for cancers

  • This new cancer testing method aims to make regular monitoring far more affordable
  • The novel test, called the Heatrich-BS assay, heats the clinical samples to isolate cancer-specific signatures found in a patient’s blood
  • This discards the non-informative sections of a patient’s DNA and targets where most cancer-specific biomarkers are concentrated instead


Ministers take openDemocracy to court to avoid handing over secret Covid review

  • DHSC chiefs agreed in November to publish the secret COVID review, following an 18-month Freedom of Information battle that ended with a disclosure order by the independent watchdog
  • However, ministers have now lodged an appeal, with a tribunal to be held next year
  • The document’s existence was revealed by HuffPost UK last year. But DHSC refused to hand it over, claiming that its release would be “likely to undermine the safe space for experts and government officials to debate live policy issues”


Undiagnosed type 2 diabetes can be found two years early using screening

  • A study, published in Diabetologia, suggests that a standard diabetes test for all 40-70 year olds in the UK could catch type 2 diabetes up to two years earlier
  • This would dramatically improve outcomes as patients could receive necessary treatments and make lifestyle changes at a much earlier stage
  • This study is the first to use real-world clinical data from the UK Biobank to understand the effect of population screening on diabetes diagnoses




Ben Kemp