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In Puerto Rico, no one fears mosquitoes. With Zika, that’s a problem

first_img WATCH: In a clinic coping with Zika, pregnant women await the moment of truth About the Author Reprints Zika infection during pregnancy is believed to interfere with fetal brain development in some instances; in those cases, babies can be born with microcephaly — smaller than normal heads — and malformed brains.Although scientists have been cautious about confirming a causal relationship between infection and birth defects, the director of the CDC’s division of vector-borne diseases, Dr. Lyle Petersen, told reporters this week: “I don’t think there’s any question about that any longer.”In Puerto Rico, there are already five pregnant women among the 117 people who have tested positive for Zika. The CDC is working on the assumption that nearly 700,000 residents of the island may become infected with the virus before the year is out — vastly more than in the continental United States, where the mosquitoes that transmit Zika are primarily concentrated in the south.The agency’s director, Dr. Tom Frieden, will travel to Puerto Rico next week to assess the CDC’s efforts to help respond to Zika.“There’s going to be infected women. And there might be babies born with developmental problems. So we’re not saying we’re going to eliminate all risk,” Brenda Rivera, Puerto Rico’s territorial epidemiologist, told STAT. “But we have to decrease it as much as possible. We have to do everything in our power to keep those populations safe.”Style over safetyJulimar Rivera, four months pregnant, is among the people public health officials would most like to protect. She’s only 19 and she’s already contracted dengue and chikungunya in her lifetime.“I’m worried that I’ll get bitten and something will happen to my kid,” she said on a recent day as she waited for a government-run Zika information session to begin. “I’m always carrying two bottles of Off.”Rivera might be more attuned to the threat of Zika than most ordinary Puerto Ricans. But she wasn’t wearing light-colored clothes, or long sleeves, or long pants — the standard uniform suggested for avoiding mosquito bites. Her short-sleeved dark olive green dress and bare legs were typical in San Juan, where looking chic can take priority over covering up.Alexandra Santiago, 22, said she knows she ought to wear tops with long sleeves, but until recently she didn’t own any. Pregnant with her second child, she bought some. But that doesn’t mean she always wears them.“Sometimes I do, sometimes I don’t,” Santiago said, noting the heat by way of explanation. “It’s Puerto Rico.”Alexandra Santiago, 22, with her 3-year-old son Sebastian Martinez, speaks with Alejandra Seda, nutritionist and registered dietitian, at the WIC Clinic in San Juan. Santiago is four months pregnant. Erika P. Rodriguez for STATModest weapons to fight the virusHealth officials here have modest weapons at their disposal.Public awareness campaigns are being planned. So too is targeted mosquito control spraying around the houses of women who are pregnant — if that proves to be acceptable to the homeowners.Pregnant women will be given Zika kits — tote bags containing mosquito repellant, a few condoms as a reminder of the risk of sexual transmission of the virus, a bed net, some larvacide pellets to put into septic tanks or standing water, and some pamphlets.Another option under consideration is providing screens for the windows and doors of the homes of pregnant women who agree to let a health department team visit to look for and eliminate mosquito breeding sites, said Dana Miró, executive director of a prenatal health program for women called Woman, Infant, Children.WIC, as everyone calls it, is the vehicle through which many Zika response efforts are being delivered. The agency already provides nutritional counseling, food vouchers, and other assistance to 93 percent of pregnant women in Puerto Rico, so it knows how to reach this population.There are roughly 15,000 pregnant women right now on the island, according to Miró, who added that in an average year, about 29,000 Puerto Rican women are pregnant.WIC has been calling women on its registry and asking them to attend a Zika information session. As of late last week, nearly 5,000 had — but only about one-quarter agreed to let health department staff check their homes for ways to reduce mosquito populations.It remains to be seen if an offer of free screens would improve that rate. Among many Puerto Ricans, there is a belief that screens make homes hotter by impeding air flow, said Dr. Jose Rigau, a retired physician and epidemiologist who lives in San Juan.And the reality is that people don’t have to have swarms of mosquitoes in their homes to catch Zika or its viral cousins. Rigau said a 1990s study showed the risk of dengue infection on the island rose in houses that had as few as two female mosquitoes — the ones that bite — per person. “It’s just two, per person, spread throughout the house. So it’s not like you’re seeing mosquitoes constantly,” Rigau noted.A mosquito that loves the indoorsStill, Aedes aegypti mosquitoes — the species that is known to transmit Zika — love to live inside. In Puerto Rico, they are always around.“We live side by side with them everyday,’’ said Tyler Sharp, the acting head epidemiologist at the CDC’s dengue branch. “Everybody that I know, myself included, has mosquitoes in their home, in their apartment. You do what you can to avoid them. But they are omnipresent.”The challenges in Puerto Rico are significant, acknowledged Stephen Waterman, director of the branch. “There’s been a lot of complacency about dengue here. Obviously, Zika raises a whole other level of fears, but I think there’s a lot of community outreach that needs to be done.”“The chikungunya outbreak in 2014-15 infected thousands of people. And we expect to see the same thing happen with Zika,” he said flatly. “We’re not going to be able to prevent every infection, or every infection in pregnant women. But I think we can probably reduce some of them. And every one of them is worth preventing.”Educational material about the Zika virus at a temporary WIC information location in San Juan. Erika P. Rodriguez for STATA significant challengeIt will take more than informing pregnant women to lower their risk of Zika infection. Neighbors and communities will need to work hard at getting rid of the standing water in which Aedes mosquitoes lay their eggs.Brenda Rivera, Puerto Rico’s territorial epidemiologist, thinks that because the virus threatens babies, people will be galvanized to act. Waterman agrees, noting Puerto Rican culture is very family-oriented.“If we can sort of tap into that sensitivity and concern about making sure that families are safe, that pregnant women are safe, then that may contribute to community participation,” he said.The local media have been featuring stories about Zika prominently. But to date the public awareness campaign — to inform people here of what they can do to reduce the population of Aedes mosquitoes — has not started.Brenda Rivera said the department of health wants to see what that work yields before it commits to public service announcements.“Some of the critical steps, before we put a lot of money into this effort, it’s understanding what in the messages needs to be included,” she said.That’s not an academic exercise. Rigau recalled a public service campaign in the 1980s warning about the risks of dengue hemorrhagic fever — a rare but life-threatening manifestation of dengue infection.In the commercial, a popular male soap opera star told parents returning for the funeral of their child that her death was caused by mosquitoes that bred on their property.A study done a decade later showed that people remembered the campaign more than any other — but they hated it. Rigau said they also reported changing the channel whenever it aired. Helen Branswell @HelenBranswell Senior Writer, Infectious Disease Helen covers issues broadly related to infectious diseases, including outbreaks, preparedness, research, and vaccine development. “It’s part of our daily life,” explained Carmen Perez, a behavioral scientist at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s dengue branch, headquartered in San Juan. “Getting dengue is like ‘Oh, dengue again.’”Because trying to prevent Puerto Ricans from getting infected would be as futile as trying to keep sand out of sandals at the beach, public health efforts are focusing on protecting a population facing a particular danger: pregnant women.advertisement Related: SAN JUAN — On this lush Caribbean island where window screens are scarce and mosquitoes rule, public health officials are preparing for a major battle against the Zika virus. But they are also gearing up to wage war on another foe: complacency.Based on the way related mosquito-spread viruses have swept through Puerto Rico in the past, health authorities predict Zika will hit this island hard, with as many as one in five residents expected to be infected at some point this year.But Puerto Ricans aren’t concerned about being bitten by mosquitoes. They view bouts of diseases like dengue fever and chikungunya — painful and unpleasant though they may be — as no more avoidable than the occasional flu. That, officials said, means helping to protect them from Zika, and persuading them of the importance of the effort, isn’t going to be easy.advertisement By Helen Branswell March 4, 2016 Reprints HealthIn Puerto Rico, no one fears mosquitoes. With Zika, that’s a problem An old information board on how to avoid the spread of the Aedes aegypti mosquitoes at the CDC Dengue Branch building in San Juan. Erika P. Rodriguez for STAT Tags global healthmosquitoesZika Viruslast_img read more

Should you get screened for prostate cancer? We break down the latest advice

first_img Tags cancermen’s healthpatientsphysicians By Sharon Begley April 11, 2017 Reprints If 1,000 men get PSA screening (cost: roughly $40), 240 will be told their PSA level suggests cancer might be present. Next step: a biopsy, in which a needle, usually inserted through the rectum, samples several spots in the prostate gland.Of those 240 biopsies, 140 men will be told, oops, the PSA was misleading: You have no signs of cancer. These are called false positives.Of the other 100 men, in whom biopsy shows definite cancer, up to 50 have malignant cells that will turn out to be so slow-growing — “indolent” — that the cancer would never spread or harm them. These are called overdiagnoses.Unfortunately, it’s impossible to tell from looking at cancer cells if they’re wimps or killers, so 80 of the 100 men with prostate cancer choose surgery or radiation treatment, either right away or after first trying “active surveillance” (frequent PSA tests, exams, biopsies). At least 60 men suffer urinary incontinence and sexual impotence from the treatment.Of the 80 treated men, only three benefit. In the other 77, the cancer either wouldn’t have caused harm if left untreated or is so aggressive that treatment doesn’t help.Of the three men who benefited at all, 1.3 who would have been killed by prostate cancer without PSA screening will not be, over a period of 10 to 15 years.Bottom line: 1,000 men screened, one prostate-cancer death averted in that time. @sxbegle Translation: learn as much as you can, talk to your physician, then decide for yourself. Ben Stiller reveals prostate cancer diagnosis, says PSA test saved his life Hormone therapy for prostate cancer associated with greater risk of dementia What do other groups think?The American Cancer Society is also in the “talk to your doctor” camp.Because “research has not yet proven that the potential benefits of testing outweigh the harms of testing and treatment,” it says, men should discuss the pros and cons of PSA screening starting at age 50 (but 45 if you’re African-American or have a father or brother who had prostate cancer before age 65).Even the American Urological Association, which practically accused the task force of killing men with its “not recommended” conclusion of 2012, says routine PSA screening is not advised for men younger than 54 or older than 70. For those 55 to 69, it recommends “shared decision making” — talk to your doctor, understand the risks and benefits and the odds that you’ll be better off — and biannual rather than yearly screening for men who opt in. Penis shrinkage, a side effect of prostate cancer surgery, is temporary, study finds Newsletters Sign up for Morning Rounds Your daily dose of news in health and medicine. About the Author Reprints Related: Leave this field empty if you’re human: So if I opt for PSA screening I’m gambling that I’ll be the 1 in 1,000?Yes.Why did the task force back off its 2012 thumbs-down on PSA screening?By 2012, studies comparing men who undergo PSA testing to men who do not had found that the harms of testing (false positives, overdiagnosis, impotence, incontinence) outweigh the benefits. Specifically, the data available then indicated that just 0.8 of 1,000 men who undergo PSA screening would be spared a prostate-cancer death over the following 10 to 15 years, said Dr. Alex Krist, a task force member and associate professor of family medicine at Virginia Commonwealth University.By continuing to follow men in the studies, researchers now find that 1.3 prostate cancer deaths are prevented per 1,000 men screened. Just as important, more men are opting for active surveillance instead of treatment. That means the potential harms — impotence, incontinence — of screening are less than the last time the task force calculated all this, “making the balance of potential benefits and harms a little more positive,” Krist said.Dr. James Eastham, a prostate cancer surgeon at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center, welcomed that. “This is a reasonable step back from the previous ‘we don’t recommend routine PSA screening,’” he said. “But it’s true that everyone shouldn’t be tested, and that many men with an elevated PSA don’t have cancer at all or, if they do, that cancer doesn’t pose a risk to his life.” [email protected] Great. How do I do that?The task force created a useful graphic to help you. We hope you like numbers:advertisement Privacy Policy Senior Writer, Science and Discovery (1956-2021) Sharon covered science and discovery. Related: A panel of experts in preventive medicine released a draft proposal Tuesday on screening for prostate cancer. “Another one?” you may ask, remembering an earlier recommendation. Don’t worry; we’re here to help you avoid whiplash:What’s new?What was emphatic before is wishy-washy now. The last time the US Preventive Services Task Force weighed in on prostate cancer screening via blood tests, in 2012, it issued unambiguous advice to physicians: discourage men of all ages from getting tested for levels of prostate-specific antigen (PSA). That’s still the advice for men older than 70 or younger than 55.But for those aged 55 to 69, the task force, a panel of independent experts who advise the federal government, is punting: It recommends “informed, individualized decision making based on a man’s values and preferences.”advertisement Please enter a valid email address. Sharon Begley Every time there’s a medical controversy, experts seem to duck, telling me to ask my doctor — who has about 13 minutes for me.“Incorporating shared decision making [into a doctor’s visit] is difficult,” Krist acknowledged. “Physicians are busy, and this is a complicated topic.” He suggests that men learn what they can before a visit — and even print out a cost-benefit analysis. Then they ought to make an appointment to discuss PSA and nothing else, and take their time deciding.How can I tell the task force what I think?Until May 8, you can submit comments online. Eventually, the task force will finalize the recommendation. HealthShould you get screened for prostate cancer? We break down the latest advice Related: BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Imageslast_img read more

Pelosi: Democrats will name marquee drug pricing bill for late Rep. Cummings

first_img GET STARTED Pelosi: Democrats will name marquee drug pricing bill for late Rep. Cummings STAT+ is STAT’s premium subscription service for in-depth biotech, pharma, policy, and life science coverage and analysis. Our award-winning team covers news on Wall Street, policy developments in Washington, early science breakthroughs and clinical trial results, and health care disruption in Silicon Valley and beyond. The late Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.) Win McNamee/Getty Images Politics Lev Facher Washington Correspondent Lev Facher covers the politics of health and life sciences. @levfacher Tags Congressdrug pricingpolicy What’s included?center_img WASHINGTON — House Democrats’ signature legislation to lower the cost of prescription drugs will be named for the late Rep. Elijah Cummings (D-Md.), House Speaker Nancy Pelosi said on Thursday.Cummings, a longtime Baltimore politician, who passed away early Thursday at age 68, chaired the House Committee on Oversight and Reform, and was a longtime champion for lowering drug prices. Unlock this article by subscribing to STAT+ and enjoy your first 30 days free! GET STARTED About the Author Reprints Daily reporting and analysis The most comprehensive industry coverage from a powerhouse team of reporters Subscriber-only newsletters Daily newsletters to brief you on the most important industry news of the day STAT+ Conversations Weekly opportunities to engage with our reporters and leading industry experts in live video conversations Exclusive industry events Premium access to subscriber-only networking events around the country The best reporters in the industry The most trusted and well-connected newsroom in the health care industry And much more Exclusive interviews with industry leaders, profiles, and premium tools, like our CRISPR Trackr. By Lev Facher Oct. 17, 2019 Reprints Log In | Learn More What is it? [email protected] last_img read more

Historic day as Portlaoise side Towerhill Rovers win Combined Counties Cup

first_img Laois Councillor ‘amazed’ at Electric Picnic decision to apply for later date for 2021 festival Facebook Twitter Previous articleCoronavirus: 255 more cases and one further death as Taoiseach says schools and colleges to be prioritised in new roadmapNext articleMountmellick GAA to hold drive-in bingo this Sunday, September 20 LaoisToday Reporter Electric Picnic Pinterest Home Sport Soccer Historic day as Portlaoise side Towerhill Rovers win Combined Counties Cup SportSoccer Towerhill Rovers 2 Birr AFC 0Combined Counties Cup FinalJust eight years after setting up as a club Portlaoise side Towerhill Rovers have won the Combined Counties Cup – the top knockout competition in midlands soccer.Two first-half goals from Jo Jo Salmon helped Towerhill to a 2-0 half-time lead and they kept the Offaly side at bay throughout the second half to record an historic triumph.The win brings the curtain down on a remarkable cup run, one that saw them keep a clean sheet in every single round.And it was a serious turn up for the books as they denied Birr Town a league and cup double – the Offaly side having claimed the CCFL Premier Division title a couple of weeks ago.Birr were going for a second cup success in three seasons and a fourth overall.But Towerhill never looked out of the depth and they took the lead in the 19th minute when the very impressive Jo Jo Salmon finished brilliantly after a cross into the box from James Furlong.And if Birr were stunned by that strike, they were in a worse situation just a couple of minutes later when Salmon got his second.This time the supply came from a long delivery from centre half Jack Fennell and Salmon got in behind the Birr defence and showed a great touch to flick it over the advancing Conor Hogan.It was a cushion that Towerhill would hold for the remainder of the game.“We knew we had everything to do,” said the experienced Luke O’Brien when interviewed on Midlands 103 after the game.“We knew they would come at us very, very strong. But we knew if we could get an early goal and we set in and we stayed compact. Always said if we could get an early goal we could sit in and defend and make it hard for them.“We could go out and win this three or four nil. They were leaving gaps and we could counter. We were unlucky not to go three nil and we hit the cross bar.“The goal this year was to win promotion and win a cup. The league got away from us but we sat down and said we’d go for this one.“Unlucky this year not to win the league – Covid hit and the GAA came back and we lost a few guys.”In winning this, Towerhill become the first Laois club to do so since Mountmellick won it back to back in 2002-2003 and only the fourth Laois club overall.TOWERHILL: Richie Downey, James Furlong, Mark Brennan, Jack Fennell, Aidan McGovern, Luke O’Brien, Nathan Carpenter, Martin Hilliard, Hayden Delaney, Paddy Downey, Jo Jo Salmon. Subs: Paul Sutton, Brian McCormack, Emeka, Shane Brophy, Kevin Sheehan, Gary Roe-SmithBIRR TOWN: Conor Hogan, Charlie Healy, Keith McEvoy, Ray Cordial, Declan Cahill, Paul Egan, Dean Cahill, Craig Short, Nicky Molloy, David McEvoySEE ALSO – Explained: How the knockout stages of the Laois hurling championships are looking after this weekend’s action News Historic day as Portlaoise side Towerhill Rovers win Combined Counties Cup WhatsApp Twitter WhatsApp Electric Picnic Facebook Pinterest TAGSTowerhill Rovers RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR By LaoisToday Reporter – 13th September 2020 Bizarre situation as Ben Brennan breaks up Fianna Fáil-Fine Gael arrangement to take Graiguecullen-Portarlington vice-chair role Electric Picnic organisers release statement following confirmation of new festival datelast_img read more

Younger North Koreans turn to technology to share information

first_img News A dictionary of IT terminology installed in the North Korean smartphone ‘Arirang 151’ is said to be popular among younger North Koreans. Image: Daily NK News Entire border patrol unit in North Hamgyong Province placed into quarantine following “paratyphoid” outbreak News RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR NewsTechnology AvatarDaily NKQuestions or comments about this article? Contact us at [email protected] Facebook Twitter Younger North Koreans turn to technology to share information Unification Media Group (UMG): The lifestyles of ordinary North Koreans are changing in tandem with the increasing availability of the latest electronic devices. Younger North Koreans born in the 1980s and 1990s are leading the trend. Reporter Seol Song Ah is here to tell us more.Reporter Seol Song Ah (Seol): North Korea is rapidly turning into a capitalist society, as the younger generation turns to technology to share information.Although most younger North Koreans know little about semiconductor devices, they are very adept at using modern electronic devices like mobile phones and becoming savvy at dealing with state regulations.UMG: It’s surprising to see North Korea change rapidly, because it was a late starter in terms of using electronic devices. It wasn’t until after 2010 that mobile phones began to spread in the country.Seol: When the first compact mobile phones were released in the North Korean markets, the locals were shocked. Talking to someone far away while walking on the street with a mobile phone was an eye-opening experience.Until the middle of the 2000s, people had to visit each other’s houses if they had urgent business. The front doors of houses in North Korea are usually made of thick iron to deter thieves, so the rattling sound of knocking on a door was always loud. But this is a rare occurrence these days.It seems similar to the times when humans first discovered electricity. The introduction of mobile phones has completely changed North Korean culture from the bottom upwards. Handwritten letters have all but disappeared, along with the mailman. With mobile text messages, communication has stepped into the 21st century.UMG: It seems that North Korean society might open up more if people can communicate freely. How are things progressing in North Korea?Seol: Smartphones have enabled new ways of sharing information and cultural entertainment like TV series. With compact mobile phones, people could only share information via calls or text messages, but now with smartphones they can share all sorts of multimedia content.Interestingly, the North Korean authorities have played a role in accelerating this trend. The authorities fervently sold smartphones to earn ruling funds, and developed apps for the Rodong Sinmun (state-run newspaper), science and technology, and classic novels (etc.) to provide information to the residents. This seems to have whet their appetite for information.UMG: You mentioned that North Koreans share content through smartphones. How do they actually do that?Seol: With the introduction of smartphones, small and lightweight SD cards have also appeared in the markets. SD cards can hold enormous amounts of information and have changed everything.The residents used to favor USB memory sticks but now SD cards have become more popular because they can be used in various devices including TVs, notetel, laptops, and mobile phones. In addition, the fact that SD cards are smaller than a fingernail is also important, because it’s easier to hide them.  In parallel, devices that can read SD cards have also become popular. USB memory sticks that SD cards can slot into for reading are common.UMG: It’s interesting that even SD card reading devices are being sold in the North Korean markets. Can you elaborate?Seol: The younger generation rarely uses memory sticks these days. SD cards are smaller than memory sticks and so are easier to hide during crackdowns. In North Korea, people even prefer smaller LCD TVs because they can operate on the small amount of electricity provided by their solar panels.So the younger generation, especially those who were born in 1980s and 1990s, are becoming adept at sharing information through electronic devices. Older merchants buy smartphones to conduct business, but younger people buy them to obtain information. They watch South Korean TV series and other multimedia content all night with SD cards slotted into smartphones. This is how they are learning about the world.UMG: We know they are severely punished if caught during crackdowns. How are they coping with it?Seol: They have become very meticulous in avoiding the crackdowns, so the security agents have difficulty catching them in the act. It is unfortunate that I cannot share any specific details because it may endanger residents in the North. UMG: So the younger generation of North Koreans is rapidly adjusting to the information revolution. Are SD cards officially permitted for sale in the markets?Seol: Memory sticks are allowed, but SD cards are banned from public sale because the North Korean authorities regard them as a means of spreading foreign cultural content. In reality, merchants discreetly offer SD cards preloaded with South Korean TV series which are sold at higher prices.UMG: How much are they?Seol: The most popular product is the 4 gigabyte (G) SD card, while 8G SD cards are expensive and hard to get. Residents categorize SD cards according to whether they are genuine branded products or 8.3 market products, which are known to be lower in quality. Generally, SD cards produced in South Korea or Japan are regarded as genuine products, while Chinese products are called 8.3 market products.Chinese products are said to get too hot if used for a long time, for instance if a South Korean TV series is saved and deleted three times. On the other hand, South Korean products last well even after new data storage is loaded ten times. In the Pyongsong region, Chinese products are sold for 5 RMB (about US$0.75), while South Korean products are selling for 35 RMB (about US$5.20). North Korea tries to accelerate building of walls and fences along border with China There are signs that North Korea is running into serious difficulties with its corn harvest By Daily NK – 2017.08.08 12:50pm SHARElast_img read more

Gas prices jump, merchants scramble to adapt

first_img News By Kang Mi Jin – 2017.07.11 3:48pm Proposal to shift “general markets” to “specialized markets” finds little support among N. Korean leaders Gas prices jump, merchants scramble to adapt SHARE Facebook Twitter Gasoline prices in North Korea have shot through the roof recently, with the phenomenon emerging in areas near the Chinese-North Korean border. Despite the trend, we have not seen a proportionate rise in the cost to hire a servicha – North Korean-style logistics vehicles used to transport products and people. The cost of a single kilo of gasoline in areas like North Hamgyong Province and Yanggang Province is around 18,050 KPW. That represents a 3,000 KPW rise compared to last week’s price point. The sudden jump sparked fears among North Koreans that servicha services would also get much more expensive, but this has not eventuated. “Even though gasoline prices have risen, the cost of servichas, which are all over the country, has not changed dramatically,” said a North Hamgyong source in a telephone conversation with Daily NK on July 7. Another source from Ryanggang Province reported similar findings, noting, “I went to Wonsan in Kangwon Province for a business trip and the servicha fee was similar to what it has been in the past, despite the rise in gasoline costs.” Asked how the drivers are able to offer such rates, the source explained, “The drivers are restricting the amount of luggage accepted and taking on more passengers to economize.” In the past, servicha operators charged a fixed rate for either people or luggage. Now, the operators are preferring to take on more passengers with a smaller amount of luggage. This allows them to extract the greatest profit per unit of space. “Some servicha operators are shifting towards deals with state enterprises to transport large cargo boxes. This allows them to reduce the economic impact of rising gas and diesel prices,” he said.Since May, when prices began to rise, servicha companies and sole proprietors have become better at adapting and economizing in order to avoid losses. Merchants are also taking the rising costs into consideration. For instance, some are double-packaging items in order to reduce transport costs. According to the source, rumors from Chinese contacts began to swirl around two weeks ago in the marketplace that gas prices would climb. “As word caught on among Chongjin traders that gas prices would continue to rise day-by-day, some of the vendors decided to suspend sales of gas and diesel,” a North Hamgyong source said.“Considering that smuggling is suspended during the mourning period for Kim Il Sung (July 7 and 8), it is unlikely that gas prices will depreciate anytime soon. Because of this, farmers are already becoming concerned that these inflated prices will make it harder to effectively reap the autumn harvest in two month’s time, an activity that requires gasoline to fuel the machinery.” NewsEconomycenter_img North Korea Market Price Update: June 8, 2021 (Rice and USD Exchange Rate Only) RELATED ARTICLESMORE FROM AUTHOR News Kang Mi JinKang Mi JinKang Mi Jin is a North Korean defector turned journalist who fled North Korea in 2009. She has a degree in economics and writes largely on marketization and economy-related issues for Daily NK. Questions about her articles can be directed to [email protected] US dollar and Chinese reminbi plummet against North Korean won once again News last_img read more

$300 COVID-19 cluster isolation payments now available

first_img$300 COVID-19 cluster isolation payments now available Eligible South Australians who have undertaken a COVID-19 test, are required to self-isolate and do not have access to paid leave or other income support can apply for a new, one-off $300 COVID-19 cluster isolation payment.Minister for Human Services Michelle Lensink said many South Australians may be eligible for this payment, including casual workers and sole traders.“Recognising that this is a particularly tough time for many South Australians, COVID-19 cluster isolation payments are now available for those eligible,” said Minister Lensink.“These targeted, one-off $300 payments are specifically for eligible South Australians who have undertaken a COVID-19 test, are required to self-isolate pending the test result, have been scheduled to work during the period of self-isolation and have no access to paid leave or other income support.“If this means people have missed a rostered shift or can’t work as a result of waiting for COVID-19 test results, they may be eligible for this payment.“We appreciate the mammoth efforts of the many thousands of South Australians who have come forward for testing.”COVID-19 cluster isolation payment eligibility criteria:have undertaken a COVID-19 testbe required to self-isolate pending the test resulthave been scheduled to work during the period of self-isolationhave no access to paid leave or other income support * be an Australian citizen or permanent resident, or a holder of necessary visa and work permits (temporary visa holders and international students)be aged 17 years or overTo find out more and to apply for the $300 COVID-19 cluster isolation payment visit: www.covid-19.sa.gov.au or call (08) 8226 2500.The Federal Government is also administering a payment of up to $1500 for eligible people who have been instructed to self-isolate or or quarantine at home by SA Health, or due to a positive COVID-19 test. Applications for the Pandemic Leave Disaster Payment payment are via the Services Australia website. /Public News. This material comes from the originating organization and may be of a point-in-time nature, edited for clarity, style and length. 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:AusPol, Australia, Australian, covid-19, disaster, Federal, federal government, Government, health, Human Services, international student, Minister, SA, SA Government, SA Health, South Australia, testing, websitelast_img read more

McGowan Government invests $160,000 to spark WA start-ups

first_imgMcGowan Government invests $160,000 to spark WA start-ups McGowan Government will partner with and invest $160,000 in leading start-up advocacy group StartupWA to further build the local start-up and technology sector Three summits to be held in 2021 designed to showcase local start-ups and provide them with access to information and networks to grow their ideas into strong WA businessesFunding to come from the $16.7 million New Industries Fund which was established to support and accelerate new and emerging businessesInnovation and ICT Minister Dave Kelly announced today at West Tech Fest that the McGowan Government would partner with peak start-up advocacy organisation StartupWA, to further build and create jobs within Western Australia’s start-up and technology sector.Working closely with StartupWA, the McGowan Government will provide $160,000 over two years to facilitate a series of summits aimed at showcasing local talent and start-ups as well as helping them access the opportunities they need to grow their business in Western Australia.The summits will be targeted at new opportunities for local early-stage businesses and start-ups, with a particular focus on female-led, Aboriginal and regional businesses.The partnership will assist StartupWA to host events that provide local start-ups and entrepreneurs with access to information and networks to help grow their ideas into strong WA-based global businesses.The funding will also enable StartupWA to engage a part-time employee to manage events and strengthen the organisation’s ability to support the local start-up ecosystem.The funding comes from the $16.7 million New Industries Fund which was established to support and accelerate new and emerging businesses to diversify the Western Australian economy and create new WA jobs.StartupWA is a non-profit organisation that advocates for WA to be recognised as a global hub for entrepreneurial and technological talent.Other supporters of the 2021 StartupWA summit series include Minderoo Generation One, City of Perth, AiGroup, MeshPoints, Curtin University, AICD WA, AgriStart, Atomic Sky, Spacecubed, Perth Angels, WiTWA (Women in Technology WA), South West Angels and Techboard.West Tech Fest, now in its ninth year, is a Western Australian week-long, technology festival featuring global founders, investors, CEOs and technology industry representatives from around the world.To learn more about the New Industries Fund, visit https://www.wa.gov.au/new-industries-fund, for more about StartupWA, visit https://www.startupwa.org or for information about West Tech Fest, visit https://www.westtechfest.comAs stated by Innovation and ICT Minister Dave Kelly:“Supporting start-ups, emerging businesses and small enterprises to scale up or become investor-ready is important for the growth and diversification of our economy and creating WA jobs.“Through this partnership with StartupWA, the McGowan Government aims to support WA start-ups by providing them with the tools they need to build a successful global business right here in the State.“Local start-up companies have the initiative and drive to grow the Western Australian economy, and we want to empower these start-ups to remain in the State.” /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:Aboriginal, Australia, Australian, business, City of Perth, Curtin University, entrepreneurs, Government, industry, innovation, Minister, technology, the Summit, university, WA, Western Australialast_img read more

A message from Mayor Ted Winterer on pedestrian safety

first_imgHomeNewsA message from Mayor Ted Winterer on pedestrian safety Apr. 11, 2017 at 7:30 amNewsA message from Mayor Ted Winterer on pedestrian safetyGuest Author4 years agoaction plancity councildaily pressMayor Ted WintererSanta Monicasanta monica daily presssmdpwilliam short photography A message from Mayor Ted Winterer on pedestrian safetyThere have been several pedestrian-vehicle collisions in the last month and as we roll into our busy summer months, we want to remind you to be vigilant about road safety.There are many options to get around in Santa Monica, which is why so many of us love it here. Whether you’re driving, walking, biking, skating, or scooting, we all need to be aware of our surroundings and put safety first.We are all pedestrians at one point or another during the day so be alert at all times and follow the rules of the road.Driving carries with it the very serious responsibility of ensuring the safety of those around you. Santa Monica is a bustling community with many pedestrians and cyclists at all hours of the day and it is essential to remain attentive. At times, pedestrians and cyclists can be unpredictable, which is all the more reason to proceed with caution. Even if you have the right-of-way, make good choices, which may prevent a serious or fatal crash with a pedestrian.The Santa Monica I know is a community that cares. It is a community that looks out for one another. Please, drive safely and let’s all do our part to keep Santa Monica safe.In 2016, City Council adopted the Pedestrian Action Plan to focus on making walking easier in Santa Monica. For more information and to review the Pedestrian Action Plan, please visit www.smgov.net/walk.Tags :action plancity councildaily pressMayor Ted WintererSanta Monicasanta monica daily presssmdpshare on Facebookshare on Twitteradd a commentSupreme Court Tacks RightSanta Monica teen found dead in Long BeachYou Might Also LikeFeaturedNewsBobadilla rejects Santa Monica City Manager positionMatthew Hall11 hours agoNewsCouncil picks new City ManagerBrennon Dixson22 hours agoFeaturedNewsProtesting parents and Snapchat remain in disagreement over child protection policiesClara Harter22 hours agoFeaturedNewsDowntown grocery to become mixed use developmenteditor22 hours agoNewsBruised but unbowed, meme stock investors are back for moreAssociated Press22 hours agoNewsWedding boom is on in the US as vendors scramble to keep upAssociated Press22 hours agolast_img read more

America Movil returns to profit in Q4

first_img America Movil swung back into the black in the fourth quarter of 2018, with the company also providing an update on the progress of recently announced asset buys from Telefonica in Latin America.It said it completed the acquisition of Telefonica’s assets in Guatemala, as announced in January, while a similar deal in El Salvador is awaiting regulatory approval. The cost of the deals was pegged at $333 million for 100 per cent of the former, and $315 million for 99.3 per cent of the latter.The company reported a profit for the quarter of MXN9.8 billion ($508.8 million), compared with a prior-year loss of MXN10.9 billion, benefitting from significantly lower comprehensive financing costs due to the release of provisions made in Brazil linked to a tax dispute. Foreign exchange losses were also lower.Operating profit increased 25.6 per cent year-on-year to MXP35.9 billion, partly due to reduced depreciation charges in Brazil following a revision of the useful lives of various assets.Total revenue decreased 0.7 per cent to MXP262 billion, with a 1.7 per cent decline in service revenue to MXP217.2 billion partially offset by an increase in equipment revenue. The company said that at constant exchange rates, service revenue grew 3 per cent.It ended the period with 275.8 million wireless customers, down 1.3 per cent year-on-year. The lion’s share of subscribers are in Mexico (75.4 million), followed by Brazil (56.4 million)For the full year, the company generated profit of MXP45.7 billion, up 8.4 per cent year-on-year, on revenue of MXP1 trillion, which was flat. Subscribe to our daily newsletter Back Luz verde a la fusión entre Telefónica y Liberty Global en el Reino Unido Related Home America Movil returns to profit in Q4 Author Steve works across all of Mobile World Live’s channels and played a lead role in the launch and ongoing success of our apps and devices services. He has been a journalist…More Read more Telefónica refuerza la seguridad de las cadenas de bloques Previous ArticleDtac facing further profit pressureNext ArticleGoogle refocuses Android Things on smart devices center_img AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to LinkedInLinkedInLinkedInShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to MoreAddThisMore 13 FEB 2019 Telefonica bolsters blockchain security Steve Costello America MovilLatin AmericaQ4 earningsTelefonica Tags Español last_img read more