Turner hoping to inspire generation next

first_imgSpeaking via video link to school children from Aboriginal communities in Walgett, Gilgandra and several other towns, Turner promoted the idea of healthy living – namely dental hygiene – through the short story ‘Gaarrala Kylegu’ or ‘Brush with Kyle’. The initiative – part of the Rugby League Reads program – involved a reading in the Gamilaraay language as well as a Q&A between Turner and the children that addressed issues such as healthy living, goal-setting and, of course, what it’s like to play with Johnathan Thurston and Greg Inglis. Speaking to NRL.com after the event, the proud Coonabarabran junior explained what it meant to interact with the Indigenous kids. “Heritage and culture are very special to me, especially coming from the country and being a proud Gamilaraay boy. To be a part of this and to be given the opportunity to influence the younger generation on how to be healthy is special to me,” Turner said. “I remember when I was younger – I think I would have been about 12 or 13 years old – I had David Peachey and Preston Campbell come to our school. “Other than being starstruck by having NRL players there, they really talked to us about being proud Indigenous people and what it means to represent the people. “Ever since that moment, I wanted to be a part of that. Being a part of this book, I feel like I am a part of that now and it means a lot to me.”Turner’s message to kids extended beyond the over-arching concept of personal hygiene, with the 24-year-old encouraging the students to pick up a footy and play rugby league. With rule changes set to revolutionise the way junior rugby league is played, there has never been a better time for kids to start playing the game. And as Turner revealed, it’s never too late to kick-start one’s career. Sometimes all it takes is a few words of wisdom from an NRL star or two. “My footy career all started from that moment. I wasn’t playing rugby league before those guys came to our school but their visit got me into it. If I’ve inspired some of these kids to play, then that’s what my job is to do,” he said. “I played with the Coonabarabran Unicorns. We didn’t have the most intimidating team name. At first I just wanted to play to be with my mates and then obviously it got more serious as I got older.”Our coach took it very seriously but we just loved being around each other. Obviously it got more competitive the older you got, but when we were still kids it was all about having fun.”I started off as a hooker and then transitioned to centre and eventually finished up in the back row. “The least amount of travel you had to do was about an hour-and-a-half away or roughly 100kms. We’d travel as far as Nyngan which was about three hours away. It was a lot of travel but I don’t regret it for a moment.”We all travelled to our games on the bus and it was all fun and games. Everyone just enjoyed their time together on those trips and that’s what footy’s all about.”last_img read more

Study 70000 opioidrelated deaths not reported owing to incomplete death certificates

first_imgJun 27 2018Several states are likely dramatically underestimating the effect of opioid-related deaths because of incomplete death certificate reporting, with Pennsylvania leading the pack, according to a new analysis by the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health.The study, published today in Public Health Reports, the journal of the Office of the U.S. Surgeon General, found that potentially 70,000 opioid-related overdose deaths were not included in national opioid-related mortality estimates since 1999 because coroners and medical examiners did not specify the drug that contributed to the cause of death when completing the death certificates.”Proper allocation of resources for the opioid epidemic depends on understanding the magnitude of the problem,” said lead author Jeanine M. Buchanich, Ph.D., research associate professor in Pitt Public Health’s Department of Biostatistics. “Incomplete death certificate reporting hampers the efforts of lawmakers, treatment specialists and public health officials. And the large differences we found between states in the completeness of opioid-related overdose mortality reporting makes it more difficult to identify geographic regions most at risk.”In the U.S., cause of death codes are assigned by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) using information reported by the coroner or medical examiner completing the death certificate. Drug-specific overdose deaths are identified by the contributory causes of death, which are categorized as “T codes” and are assigned based on the specific drugs recorded by the coroner or medical examiner completing the death certificate. A code of T50.9 means “other and unspecified drugs, medicaments and biological substances.”Buchanich and her team extracted death data by state for 1999 through 2015 from the NCHS’s Mortality Multiple Cause Micro-data Files. They grouped overdose deaths into opioid-related, non-opioid-related and unspecified codes, and calculated the change in percentage of overdose deaths that fell into each category from 1999 to 2015 by state. This allowed the researchers to extrapolate how many of the unspecified overdose deaths were likely opioid-related.Related StoriesAMSBIO offers new, best-in-class CAR-T cell range for research and immunotherapyScientists develop universal FACS-based approach to heterogenous cell sorting, propelling organoid researchAXT enhances cellular research product portfolio with solutions from StemBioSysIn those 17 years, opioid-related overdose deaths rose 401 percent, non-opioid-related overdose deaths rose 150 percent and unspecified overdose deaths rose 220 percent. In five states – Alabama, Indiana, Louisiana, Mississippi and Pennsylvania – more than 35 percent of the overdose deaths were coded as unspecified.The variability among states not reporting specific drugs during this time period was tremendous – ranging from fewer than 10 unspecified overdose deaths in Vermont to 11,152 in Pennsylvania. States with a decentralized county coroner system or with a hybrid system that involved county coroners and state medical examiners, were likely to have a higher proportion of overdose deaths with unspecified drug codes.”Multiple organizations have advocated for more accurate drug reporting on death certificates,” said Buchanich. “But coroners are less likely to be physicians and do not necessarily have medical training useful for completing drug information for death certificates based on toxicology reports. And states with a decentralized or hybrid system are likely to have less standardization, leading to greater variation in reporting accuracy.”Several states have made extensive efforts to improve reporting. In Kentucky, for example, opioid-related drug codes increased 43 percent from 1999 through 2015, and unspecified drug reporting decreased 28 percent. This suggests that state-based efforts can be instrumental in improving the accuracy of drug-specific reporting for overdose deaths, Buchanich said.Several assumptions – primarily that the proportion of known opioid-related deaths would be the same for those that were unspecified by state by year – were made in performing this analysis, Buchanich said. Future research should more fully evaluate these assumptions and also examine other factors, such as potential biases, that could lead coroners and medical examiners to use an unspecified versus specific drug code on death certificates. Source:http://www.upmc.com/media/NewsReleases/2018/Pages/buchanich-death-certs.aspxlast_img read more