Not all Nova Scotians who need dialysis will have to travel to a hospital for treatments. Beginning July 1, a new provincial program will offer continuing-care clients with renal failure the option to have dialysis treatments in their homes and at designated long-term-care facilities. “Today, many dialysis patients must travel to the hospital, three times a week, to receive hemodialysis treatments on someone else’s schedule,” said Health Minister Chris d’Entremont. “This new option gives some the freedom that comes with getting the treatment they need in the comfort and privacy of their own homes.” Peritoneal dialysis is a well-established alternative to traditional hemodialysis. In hemodialysis, blood is passed through an artificial-kidney machine to be cleaned. Peritoneal dialysis uses a similar filtration process, but the blood is cleaned inside the body rather than in a machine. This form of dialysis can be performed in the home or in the community, reducing the need for patients to travel, or relocate, to be closer to hospitals. Less invasive and less expensive, peritoneal dialysis is, in many cases, better suited to elderly and disabled patients. It improves blood-pressure control, preserves remaining kidney function and expands dietary options. Combined with the fact that patients do not need to leave home for treatment, peritoneal dialysis often improves overall quality of life. There are about 95 peritoneal dialysis patients in the province; 10 per cent of those patients are continuing-care clients. Based on health and population trends, it is expected demand for dialysis-treatment options will increase. Peritoneal dialysis will be available to continuing-care clients with renal failure through home-care service providers. It will also be available in one long-term-care home in each health district across the province. The new peritoneal dialysis program makes services already available in some areas of the province available to eligible continuing-care clients across Nova Scotia. Continuing-care clients who require dialysis can call 1-800-225-7225 (out of province 1-902-424-4288), any day of the week between 8:30 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. for more information on peritoneal dialysis services. The Continuing Care Strategy is a 10-year plan to enhance and expand Nova Scotia’s continuing-care system. By building on community support, increasing local solutions and ensuring care options are available when and where they are needed, the strategy aims to create a system that supports Nova Scotians in their desire to live well in a place they can call home. A peritoneal dialysis patient is available for interview upon request. For more information see the website at www.gov.ns.ca/health/ccs/ccs_strategy .
“Ending the AIDS epidemic is a crucial part of achieving the Sustainable Development Goals,” said UN Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon ahead of the 2016 High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS, which will take place from 8 to 10 June in the UN General Assembly. “The 2016 United Nations General Assembly High-Level Meeting on Ending AIDS can help close the gap between needs and services and advance our efforts to leave no one behind,” he added. Participants at the forum will include Governments, civil society organizations, the private sector, and communities of people living with and affected by HIV. In 2015, the global community delivered on the AIDS targets of Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 6 – which included halting and reversing the AIDS epidemic – marking the first time a global health target has been met and exceeded. Indeed, data show that the number of people accessing antiretroviral therapy more than doubled to an estimated 17 million from 2010 to 2015, according to the Global AIDS Update 2016 recently released by the Joint UN Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS). The lessons learned in responding to HIV will be crucial to achieving many of the SDGs – a universal set of targets adopted in 2015 that build on the MDGs and which are being used as a framework for the agendas of UN Member States over the next 15 years – and particularly SDG 3, which focuses on good health and well-being and calls for, in particular, ending the AIDS epidemic by 2030. An integral part of achieving that target will require countries to take a fast-track approach during the next five years in order to ensure that global efforts are accelerated during that time, as highlighted in the Secretary-General’s report, On the fast track to ending the AIDs epidemic. “We are at a unique moment in history,” stressed UNAIDS Executive Director Michel Sidibé. “Over the next five years we have a window of opportunity to shift gear and put the global HIV response firmly on the fast-track to end the AIDS epidemic. This meeting will be critical to harnessing the momentum we have built since 2011 and securing global commitment to break the epidemic for good,” he added. At the High-Level Meeting, UN Member States are expected to draft a new political declaration on Ending AIDS that will include a set of time-bound targets to scale up the pace of progress. They will use the zero draft of the political declaration as a basis of negotiations. Peer educator discusses HIV/AIDS prevention and other STDs in Barangay Don Carlos, a poor neighbourhood in Pasay City, Philippines. Photo: UNICEF The meeting will feature a series of four panels as well as a number of side events and round tables covering diverse topics. Participants will take into account analysis of global data showing that the world has a window of opportunity in which to deliver focused and effective action by fully funding and front-loading HIV investment. Countries and the private sector must come together to increase overall investment in HIV prevention and treatment from the $19 billion available in 2014 to $26 billion annually by 2020. At the same time, investment in outreach services that ensure that key populations have access to HIV prevention, care and treatment in low- and middle-income countries must increase to about seven per cent of total HIV investment in 2020. The UNAIDS Fast-Track approach to the AIDS response during the next five years will aim for achieving such targets as fewer than 500,000 people newly infected with HIV; fewer than 500,000 people dying from AIDS-related illnesses; and eliminating HIV-related discrimination. “I call on all United Nations Member States to unite at the high-level meeting on ending AIDS. Together we can fast-track the end of the AIDS epidemic by 2030,” said Mogens Lykketoft, President of the UN General Assembly, which is hosting the meeting. The meeting will be co-facilitated by Jürg Lauber, Permanent Representative of Switzerland to the UN, and Patricia Mwaba Kasese-Bota, Permanent Representative of Zambia to the UN. Ahead of the high-level meeting, a global meeting of mayors on ending AIDS in cities by 2030 is being held at the New York Public Library today. The event, featuring Bill de Blasio, Mayor of New York City, and about 30 other mayors from major cities, was convened in collaboration with UNAIDS and the Fast-Track cities partners, the UN Human Settlements Programme (UN-Habitat) and the International Association of Providers of AIDS Care. Tomorrow, 7 June, an event on HIV and Security: Past, Present and Future, will be held at UN Headquarters in New York, will focus on achieving the Fast-Track targets as well as gender-based violence prevention in humanitarian emergencies and conflict situations. On Wednesday, 8 June, an event on Delivering an AIDS-free generation, also to be held in New York, will highlight the achievements of the Global Plan towards the Elimination of New HIV Infections among Children by 2015 and Keeping their Mothers Alive and priority actions to fast-track that response and the goal of ending paediatric AIDS by 2020. Also on Wednesday, another event to be held in New York, on Breaking the silos: integrated services for adolescent girls and young women, will showcase examples of adolescent-centred policies and programmes and establish commitment to mobilize stakeholders and resources for responses, particularly towards adolescent girls.
OSU then-junior forward Shayla Cooper (32) during a game against Nebraska on Feb. 18 at the Schottenstein Center. Credit: Lantern File PhotoRedshirt junior forward Stephanie Mavunga has been an integral part of the Ohio State women’s basketball team’s success. However, with the Buckeyes’ second-leading scorer and leading rebounder sidelined with a foot injury, OSU is using many different players, both in the starting lineup and on the bench, to make up for the production lost for the foreseeable future.In her first season playing for OSU after transferring from North Carolina after her sophomore season, Mavunga is second on the team, averaging 11.8 points per game while leading the team, and ranked sixth nationally, with 11.3 rebounds per game.According to McGuff, the season that Mavunga is having with OSU does not come very often.“It’s not easy to average a double-double,” McGuff said. “It takes a lot of work and effort. Another thing that she does is run the floor. She puts a lot of pressure on other teams’ post players to get back and I think that really wears on the other team as the game goes on. She’s doing a great job.”Mavunga stressed the importance of having a “big” as the anchor of the defensive front.“I think size is key,” she said. “That is something that lacked last year and the previous years before that. I think that size is key both defensively and offensively. Defensively especially, because there’s other really big girls in the NCAA Tournament and in the Big Ten itself, so I think that that’s key in terms of defending other teams’ post players. Also, on the offensive end, it helps in rebounding and shot attempts as well, so you can have a shot over other people maybe that are smaller than you or at least easier to do that.”With Mavunga out of the starting lineup and her game being very important to the team’s overall game plan, OSU had to find players to replace her production in the paint. After being outrebounded by Iowa by three on Feb. 12, the Buckeyes were back to dominating the paint, out-rebounding Nebraska by 11 with the forwards — freshman Tori McCoy, redshirt sophomore Makayla Waterman, junior Alexa Hart and senior Shayla Cooper — combining for 25 of the 45 team rebounds.With the loss of Mavunga, junior guard Kelsey Mitchell said that she and her teammates are going to have to continue to step up in the paint to get those rebounds.“Being able to kind of get that back and knowing that, with her absence, it’s going to be a little bit more difficult, we just have to take the people we do have and tell them to buy in to it,” she said. “There were a couple of changes that needed to be made in how important it was that (Mavunga) was getting rebounds and now it’s a lot more important that we kind of bounce back and get that same kind of vibe that we did have.”Even though she cannot play, Mavunga is making an impact, giving players, like McCoy, different tips on how to defend her position during the game.“Basically, she is just telling me to keep running the floor and post up hard and every time I have the chance,” McCoy said. “She is always telling me to do that and it’s actually helping. I listened to her in the last game we just played.”Even when Mavunga was on the court, she gave her teammates an example on how to play the game.“(McCoy’s) energy and her intensity really is contagious to our team and how hard she goes in the paint really effects how hard we play,” redshirt junior guard Linnae Harper said. “She’s a great asset to the team and that’s one reason why our team is getting better because it’s somebody on our team that can make other people better.”However, until Mavunga is ready to get back onto the court, the rebounding game will have to be a team effort.“It’s important that we have all three of (the forwards) in the paint and the rest of the guards, too. All of us,” Mitchell said.