Category Archives: Health

Dog eats paralyzed man’s testicle

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A Trumann man awoke Monday morning to find his dog eating one of his testicles.

The man, who has not been identified, is paralyzed and told police he has “no feeling from the waist down.”

Around 7:45 a.m. Monday he was awakened by a “burning pain” in his mid-section, according to the initial police report.

The 39-year-old man told police he sleeps in the nude and noticed the dog was between his legs.

He also noticed the “small, white, fluffy dog”  had blood on its muzzle and front feet.

When the man looked further, according to the report, he noticed that “the dog had eaten one of his testicles.”

The victim said the dog was a stray he had taken in about three weeks earlier.  The man was unsure if the dog had been vaccinated.

Police took the dog to a local veterinarian where it was euthanized.  Its head was sent to the Arkansas Department of Health to be tested for rabies.

The victim was taken to St. Bernards Regional Medical Center where he was treated for his injuries.

From  http://poinsettcounty.kait8.com/news/news/240253-dog-eats-paralyzed-mans-testicle

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Dying cancer victim faces eviction from Birmingham home in bedroom tax row

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The first evictions over the government’s controversial “bedroom tax” are set to begin as notices and final demand letters are being put through the letter boxes of social housing tenants around the country.Including that of Veronica Kenning a 57-year-old cancer sufferer :

A wheelchair-bound mum dying of cancer is facing eviction from her council house in a bedroom tax row .

Veronica Kenning could lose the only home she has ever known after refusing to pay the £23.57-a-week demanded by Birmingham City Council .

The 57-year-old said she would fight her case in court – but admitted any hearing would have to be quick as she was given a year to live last August.

Veronica, who has also suffered from ME for 26 years, said: “I told the council I was never going to pay because I’m dying.

“They shouldn’t be asking for it. It’s disgraceful.

“I told them they could take me to court – but they would have to be quick.”

Veronica was told in February that she faced paying out under the bedroom tax after her daughter moved out of their three-bedroom home in Brook Meadow Road, Shard End.

The controversial benefits shake-up, which cuts payouts for those with spare rooms, came into force on April 1.

It was blamed for causing the death of Solihull grandmother Stephanie Bottrill, who was hit by a lorry on the M6 on May 4.

Veronica, who has cancer of the oesophagus, has already received a letter warning the council intended to seek possession of the home where she has spent her entire life.

The document told her: “Your rent debt is now at an unacceptable level and we are serving you with a notice of seeking possession. This is a legal notice and should not be ignored.”

Veronica admitted she had rebuffed the council’s attempts to encourage her to apply for cash to help her pay her way.

She said: “I haven’t got enough time left to waste it filling out forms.

“I might not even qualify. I’m making a stand.”

A spokesman for Birmingham City Council said: “We have been in regular contact with Mrs Kenning, urging her to apply for discretionary housing payment, which we feel, in her circumstances, she would qualify for.

“Indeed, we have told her we will take a telephone application to make things easier for her.

“Unfortunately she has refused on every occasion to make a claim.

“We are deeply sympathetic to Mrs Kenning’s plight and have written, phoned and visited her property in order to try to help her get the assistance available to her.

“However, her consistent refusal to allow us to help her has left us with little option as she has made it clear to us that she does not want to apply for discretionary housing payment.”

 

I would just like to salute Veronica for being such a brave inspiration to us all. Knowing she is dying she is using her own situation to highlight the evil and targeted discrimination against disabled people by this government.  Most people would have applied for the grant then shut up, do what they were told and used what little time they have left to try to come to terms with themselves and find peace and a  bit of happiness. Instead Ms Kenning  is setting an example and hopefully that example will be used to shine a light on the plight of many thousands of people being affected by these unfair rules.

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Man cuts throat with knife in Runcorn benefits office in protest bedroom tax

 

Another story today of the stress that some people are under due to this governments war on welfare.

A MAN cut his throat with a knife in a Runcorn benefits advice office during an outburst about the bedroom tax.

An eyewitness, who asked not be identified, heard the middle-aged man say he was ‘sick of all this sh*t’ then watched him drag a blade through skin from his ear down to his throat on each side of his neck.

The wounds left him and the floor spattered with blood, the witness said.

Staff hit an emergency alarm during the incident.

It happened at about 2pm on Monday, at Halton Direct Link in Halton Lea shopping centre.

Cheshire police officers have spoken to the man, who suffered ‘minor injuries’, about his wellbeing.

No criminal offences were reported.

Halton Borough Council said he was receiving support following the incident, as are Link staff.

The witness, who was waiting in line to see an adviser, said no other residents reacted to the outburst but that staff seemed ‘a little bit shocked’.

He said: “From what I could see, the bloke had gone to see an adviser.

“He was upset about the bedroom tax and wasn’t getting through and he started to cut his throat on both sides and threw the knife on the floor and he had blood coming from his neck.

“There was a lot of blood but it hadn’t come out of his artery, he wasn’t gushing out blood.

“He went through the side of his neck from his ear to the front.

“It would have needed medical attention.

“Everyone was just sat about normal waiting to go and see the adviser. I was in the queue. Nobody did nothing.”

A Halton Council spokesman said: “We are aware of this incident. The person concerned is receiving appropriate support and we are supporting our staff who witnessed the incident.”

So there you have it people. If you are having trouble because of the new Tory policies be it the bedroom tax or the WCAs, its ok, all you have to do to be acknowledged is to cut your own throat. Then and only then, you may actually get the support you need. Though I wouldn’t hold your breath.

My only worry is that during the ATOS work assessment evidence of cutting ones own throat may be used of proof that you can use your hands properly and have adequate hand  and eye co-ordination  and are therefore fit for work 😛

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ATOS Kills Again

 

Still no word from Ian Duncan Smith on the statistics for number of people who have died after being found fit for work. But today we hear of another victim of the ATOS work capability assessment.

Elenore Tatton, 39, was a mother of three who has struggled with a brain tumour since the age of 15. After attending the WCA she was put into the work related activity group and ordered to begin the job of finding employment.  It can only be theorized, but it is more than possible that the shock and worry that came with this decision was the reason for her sudden worsening of her condition which sadly resulted in her death.

When ATOS were told of this tragedy this was their rather cold reply :

ATOS said: “Our sympathies go out to the friends and family of Ms Tatton at this difficult time.

“We gather information on a person’s ability to work. We pass this on to the DWP for them to decide on benefit entitlement.

“Our doctors, nurses and physios do not diagnose or treat medical conditions.

“Where there is a change in a person’s condition after a decision is made they will need to inform the department.”

To make matters worse her partner and father of the 3 children has also, while still dealing with the grief of the loss of his beloved wife, had his ESA stopped and told to find work. This while suffering from gangrene of the appendix, diabetes and having part of his bowel removed.  Let us hope  this does not lead to a double tragedy for this poor innocent family, targeted by a government determined to punish the poor and disabled for the crime of just existing.

 

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Top ten private sector commissioning failures

Barnet Unison has put together its top ten list of privatisation and private sector commissioning failures. Some extraordinary ones in here. We might add more. There are plenty around, after all.

Follow the links to see how badly these private sector companies have “delivered” services:

1. Jeremy Hunt: ‘completely normal’ for contractor to fail to deliver http://ning.it/OV8pPC

2. Winterbourne – Timeline: Winterbourne View abuse scandal http://ning.it/18tbEaf

3. Southwest One contract dispute cost council £5.9m http://ning.it/18tbHTs

4. Timeline: how G4S’s bungled Olympics security contract unfolded http://ning.it/1b4EnGP

5. G4S faces fraud investigation over tagging contracts http://ning.it/18tbNKJ

6. Private contractor fiddled data when reporting to NHS, says watchdog http://ning.it/1b4EwtN

7. Serco tagging scandal could hit sale of MoD agency contract – http://ning.it/1b4ExOp

8. MPs CALL FOR CAPITA CONTRACT TO BE AXED http://ning.it/1b4EHoV

9. BT overcharging Liverpool council by £10m a year, report claims http://ning.it/1b4EPoq

10. Southern Cross set to shut down and stop running homes – http://ning.it/1b4F0A1

and let’s also add:

11. ATOS – with employment and support allowance appeals up by 70% in recent figures.

12. A special shoutout to ALS/Capita for the shambles made of the courts’ outsourced interpreting service

13. A4e for multiple allegations of fraud and getting just 3.5% of referrals into long term jobs – below the minimum target set by the DWP.

14. We’re saving this spot for companies involved with the development of Universal Credit.

 

Reblogged from the False Economy website

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The BBC is colluding in the government’s attack on benefit claimants

 

The camera may not lie but sometimes it tells truths you weren’t expecting. As the government’s flagship benefits cap is rolled out across the nation, amid protests from homelessness charities, women’s rights groups and food banks already overwhelmed by demand, the BBC is devoting hours of its prime-time schedule to pitting the underpaid against the unemployed. The spectacle of one single mother telling another in the tin-can aisle at the supermarket that she’s greedy because she wants her kids to have a hot meal says a great deal about modern Britain. It tells us whose suffering matters and whose children will never have their dinner dissected for our scorn on national television.

The BBC1 programme Nick and Margaret: We All Pay Your Benefits (11 and 18 July, 9pm), echoing the rhetoric of the Department for Work and Pensions, pits “taxpayers” against “shirkers” and asks how we can “make work pay”. Of these gristly little semantic nuggets of state propaganda, “making work pay” is the most noxious – a mantra that’s incanted by every jobsworth Tory in every debate, in line with the logic that if one repeats a lie for long enough it will function as truth.

Taking away benefits will not “make work pay”. The reason why work doesn’t pay is not that benefits are too high. It is that wages are too low. The latest figures from the Office for National Statistics show that, with the rising cost of living, there have been 40 consecutive months of contraction in real wages in the UK. In many occupations, the basic pay is too low to cover rent, food and bills, especially in London and the south-east, where housing costs are out of control. This is why a large proportion of housing benefit is paid on behalf of those who are in work, straight into the pockets of private landlords.

Then there’s “the taxpayer”, a phrase that is deliberately misused to imply that only those in waged work pay taxes. Everybody who buys a warm Cornish pasty puts pennies into the Treasury. Drawing an arbitrary distinction between “taxpayers” and “people on benefits” implies that those who rely on state support are taking money directly out of the pockets of workers, when they are being supported by a system to which we all contribute, which is there to help all of us should we find ourselves ill or unemployed.

The anxiety to separate the interests of “taxpayers” from those of the unemployed falsely suggests that unemployment benefits are now the main drain on the state. Despite savage welfare cuts, state spending on unemployment remains high because unemployment remains high, for the simple reason that one cannot “incentivise” people into jobs that aren’t there. A far higher proportion of state spending goes on subsidising tax cuts for multinational corporations and arms dealers, maintaining our nuclear weapons programme and having a military presence abroad. “Taxpayers”, though, are not being invited into the homes of devastated Afghan families, taken on tours of the Trident base or shown around the mansions of offshore millionaires and asked to make judgements about how their taxes are being spent. The idea is preposterous. Poor people are supposed to make moral judgements about other poor people only. We can afford to offer Vodafone billions in tax breaks but God forbid some kids in Ipswich get a second-hand PlayStation.

That’s the judgement call that representatives of the working class are invited to make in We All Pay Your Benefits, deciding whether or not the unemployed are being indulged, as Nick and Margaret, a pair of well-spoken, pension-age presenters, ride around in a taxi prattling on like something out of a David Lynch film. For most of the show, the camera leers at the jobseekers but the truly fascinating characters are those who have been invited on to the show to judge.

Their anger that their hard slog has not raised them above the level of a family on Jobseekers’ Allowance is distressing to watch. Clearly they all work hard – for not enough money and with few prospects of improving their circumstances as rents rise and essential services are dismantled. It is hardly the fault of a disabled single father-ofthree that a care worker who runs her own business is still struggling to cover the bills. But that is the only conclusion that this programme and this government are permitting us to voice.

On any other channel, a programme such as this could be written off as a crass cash-in on public mistrust of the welfare system, treating the unemployed as a telegenic cross between criminals and animals in a zoo. That it was given the green light by the BBC, a publicly funded and supposedly impartial broadcaster, indicates something more. It suggests a culture shift: the wilful misdirection of public anger towards those who least deserve it.

The cruellest thing about the benefits cap is not that it could make thousands of people homeless or force more families to depend on food banks (three of these open every week). It’s that it’s not really about people on benefits at all. They aren’t the voters this government is interested in attracting. It’s about placating public rage and persuading people who would vote for a tin of beans if it had a Tory ribbon on it that this government is tough and in charge.

Like any pack of bullies, the Conservative Party likes to prove its strength by picking on the weakest people within reach. In this case, the targets include single mums and the mentally ill. That tens of thousands of children will spend their school years going to bed hungry because of this policy is incidental. The benefits cap is first and foremost a public relations exercise. With a former PR man for Prime Minister, what else would it be? Behind the relentless campaign of spin, though, is the truth – and the truth is that those on benefits have nothing, absolutely nothing, to be ashamed of.

 

Written by Laurie Penny and reposted courtesy of The New Statesman

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GPs in south east Wales told not to help benefit appeals

 

Had to suffer one of the appalling ATOS fit for work assessments? Been found fit despite clearly being too ill to work?  Well don’t bother contacting your GP for a supporting appeals letter, at least if you live in south-east Wales.

According to the BBC the local medical committee has told GPs NOT to write any more appeal letters to support patients because of massive increases of requests for said letters from disabled people being found fit for work.  Apparently “it is an abuse of NHS resources”   What? an abuse of NHS resources, are you serious?  Isn’t it a GPs job to look after their ill patients and to help them get the care they need?  How is causing them to be deprived of money to eat and live helping them get the care they need?  My god this is callous desk bound bullshit if ever I have seen it,

Now if this was a letter of protest written to the DWP or to ATOS itself saying how GPs were spending far too much time having to do these appeals because of the Tories lousy attack on the most vulnerable I could understand. But this is no criticism of  government welfare policy this is guidelines for GPs to follow. It is basically an inter department whine that they have too much work to do mixed with asinine claims like :

“Do we want to see doctors seeing ill patients, or do we want to see doctors seeing patients who are not ill but simply want to undertake some form of appeal letter?”

What? They are seriously missing the point here. These people who are coming to them for appeal letters ARE ill ffs and not only are they ill but they are being forced to jump through hoops and often denied the money and help that they need because of a callous disregard for their wellbeing and a government hell-bent on making sure the working class knows its place – at the bottom in the mud, there to be walked on by their betters. So if you ask me I would say that not only are these people ill and therefore need to be seen but they are suffering much more and so are in that much more need of talking to some kind of friendly understanding face.  It is bad enough that where GPs are allowed to write these appeal letters they charge the claimants between £20 and £80 per letter!!!!!!   How someone who only claims £72 per week is meant to pay for one of these letters is beyond me.

Does this feel like class warfare yet?

Now I should make it clear that while this directive to GPs is reprehensible it is not the medical committee that should take all the blame. The blame is and should be fairly planted on the shoulders of Ian Duncan Smith and his DWP. These are the cause of all the policies that are filling up GP surgeries with people asking for appeal letters.  If the ATOS work capability assessment was not such a fucked up biased piece of evil  then there would not be this problem to start with. However I am saddened to see professionals who should be coming together with their patients on this and showing a united front to the policy makers, instead dismissing patients concerns and worrying about themselves and their work loads. Dont want to write these letters doctors?  Then stand up and fight against this corrupt money stealing, people demeaning coalition of the damned.

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There Was Once a Woman Who Had Immortal Cells

 

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There was once a woman who had immortal cells.   These immortal cells have multiplied to the point that if you were to weigh all of them that live today, they’d weigh about 50 million metric tons, which is about as much as 100 Empire State Buildings.

So who was this woman and why are scientists keeping about 50 million metric tons of her cells supplied with fresh nutrients so they can live on?  The woman was Henrietta Lacks and her immortal cells have been essential in curing polio; gene mapping; learning how cells work; developing drugs to treat cancer, herpes, leukemia, influenza, hemophilia, Parkinson’s disease, AIDS… The list goes on and on and on.  If it deals with the human body and has been studied by scientists, odds are, they needed and used Henrietta’s immortal cells somewhere along the way.  Her cells were even sent up to space on an unmanned satellite to determine whether or not human tissue could survive in zero gravity.

Go to just about any cell culture lab in the world and you’ll find billions of Henrietta’s cells stored there.  What’s unique about her cells is that, not only do they never die, in contrast to normal human cells which will die after a few replications, but her cells can also live and replicate just fine outside of the human body, which is also unique among humans.  Give her cells the nutrients they need to survive and they will live and replicate along forever, apparently (almost 60 years and counting since the first culture was taken). They can even be frozen for literally decades and later thawed and they will go right on replicating.

Before her cells were discovered and widely cultured, it was nearly impossible for scientists to reliably experiment on cells and get meaningful results.  Cell cultures that scientists would try to study would weaken and die very quickly outside the human body.  Her cells gave scientists, for the first time, a “standard” that they could use to test things on.  Even better, her cells can survive being shipped in the mail just fine, so scientists across the globe can all use the same standard from which to test against.

Henrietta Lacks herself was an impoverished black woman who died on October 4th, 1951 of cervical cancer at the age of just 31 years old.  It was during getting her cancer treated that a doctor at Johns Hopkins took a sample of her tumor without her knowledge or consent and sent it over to a colleague of his, Dr. George Gey; Dr. Gey  had been trying for 20 years, unsuccessfully, to grow human tissues from cultures.   A lab assistant there, Mary Kubicek, discovered that Henrietta’s cells, unlike normal human cells, could live and replicate outside the body.

Henrietta died of uremic poisoning, in the segregated hospital ward for blacks, about eight months after being diagnosed with cervical cancer; never knowing that her cells would become one of the most vital tools in modern medicine and would spawn a multi-billion dollar industry where her replicated cells would be bought and sold by the billions.

She was survived by her husband and five children, the surviving members of which still to this day live in poverty (one who is homeless on the streets of Baltimore) and were long ignorant of the importance of Henrietta’s cells to modern medicine.

written by Daven Hiskey

 

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