Les Nouvelles et Questions courantes

Botox and Botox Cosmetic - Consumer Information from Health Canada

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Health Canada is informing Canadians of an ongoing safety review of distant toxin spread potentially associated with Botox and Botox Cosmetic. A similar review was recently announced by the US Food and Drug Administration linking Botox and Botox Cosmetic (Botulinum toxin Type A), and Myobloc (Botulinum toxin Type B) to cases of adverse reactions, including respiratory failure and death, following treatment of a variety of conditions using a range of doses.  Read the review.

Merck’s Gardasil vaccine encounters skepticism from some physicians regarding wide-scale use, long-term safety and efficacy

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Article in Financial Times

Published: February 22 2008

Merck’s human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine Gardasil is seeing physician skepticism regarding its wide-scale use, as doubts of long-term safety and efficacy linger, Pharmawire has found. Recent reports have linked deaths and rare serious adverse events to the vaccine, doctors said.  Read the full article

UNFPA Scales Up Efforts to Save Millions of Women

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Aims to Raise Nearly $500 Million to Reduce Maternal Deaths in 75 Countries

14 February 2008

UNITED NATIONS, New York— A new thematic fund for maternal health has been created to boost global efforts to reduce the number of women dying in pregnancy and childbirth. The fund, established by UNFPA, the United Nations Population Fund, will also encourage developed countries and private sponsors to contribute more to saving women’s lives. Read the complete article.


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The "Unborn Victims of Crime Act" is scheduled for debate on  Feb 29 with a Parliamentary vote on March 5. This bill would give fetuses personhood, and it has a chance of passing.  Not only is it a foot-in-the-door to recriminalize abortion, it would also endanger the rights of all pregnant women, and violate women's equality rights in general.  Please check out 14 "Talking Points" on the dangers of this bill, put together by the Abortion Rights Coalition of Canada (ARCC).

Sign ARCC's petition against the bill. 

A National License to The Cochrane Library for Canada

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Three provinces and a number of organisations in Canada have already recognised the value of The Cochrane Library and have purchased licenses, despite limited funding available. These licenses provide access to approximately 10% of Canada's population. If Canada were to purchase a National License, the economy of scale is enormous. For slightly more than double the current investment in licenses, we increase access by about 90% - with a cost of about 1.5 cents per person per year! Any Canadian - from the general public to your community health care provider - could access the full Cochrane Library from their home or office through IP address recognition.  Sign the petition.

Fix the Foundation, Says the Health Council of Canada in its New Report on Primary Health Care and Home Care

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The vast majority of Canadians (96 percent) report having either a regular medical doctor (86 percent), or regular place they go for primary health care (10 percent). Those numbers may sound comforting, but the Health Council's latest report reveals that care is not always well coordinated, comprehensive, or available when needed.            

Fixing the Foundation: An Update on Primary Health Care and Home Care Renewal in Canada, was released along with the results of a new public survey commissioned by the Health Council, evaluates renewal efforts in the province and territories and calls for action to accelerate primary health care and home care renewal efforts across Canada. 

Black women have a higher risk of breast cancer than white women

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 Author: Roger Dobson Abergavenny

Black women in Britain develop breast cancer up to 21 years earlier than white women. They are seen at a median age of 46-four years before routine NHS screening for the disease starts-compared with 67 for white women, according to the first published data on breast cancer presentation in black women (British Journal of Cancer; doi: 10.1038/sj.bjc.6604174). Among women with smaller tumours (less than 2 cm), black women were nearly three times as likely to die of their disease (hazard ratio 2.90, 95% CI 0.98 to 8.60, P=0.05).  Read the complete article in the BMJ.

Top Ten Wins for Women's Health and Rights in 2007

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Women's health was a priority concern in 2007, as global donors, international agencies, and influential private foundations realized that investing in women's health is investing in the world. Over the course of the year, global donors, international agencies, and influential private foundations realized that investing in the health of women and young people is investing in the world. 

From new commitments to sex education programs to progress on securing a women's right to abortion, these ten developments show that women's health was a priority concern in 2007, and will continue to require our attention and dedication in 2008.  Read the list.

CWHN has a Facebook page

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We are looking for our fans.  Come and join us on the popular social networking site where we will be able to connect with those who care about women’s health in Canada, engage in discussions and post the most current news.  We look forward to seeing you there!

HRT raises risk of rare type of breast cancer

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Article written by MAGGIE FOX


“WASHINGTON — Hormone replacement therapy can raise the risk of an uncommon type of breast cancer fourfold after just three years, U.S. researchers reported on Monday. They found women who took combined estrogen/progestin hormone-replacement therapy for three years or more had four times the usual risk of lobular breast cancer.”  Read the article in the Globe and Mail.

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