Book Reviews

Insulin – A Voice for Choice

With the extremely high prevalence of diabetes in the Middle East region, this book, Insulin – A Voice for Choice, is very important for both diabetics and medical professionals. In it Professor Arthur Teuscher puts to task the ‘big pharma’ industry and their development of synthetic ‘human’ insulin with the consequent withdrawal from the market of natural animal insulin.

This book is the result of an extraordinary and tireless campaign by Prof Teuscher to warn physicians and patients of the dangers of synthetic human insulin as opposed to natural animal insulins.

Animal insulins have been endorsed by the International Diabetes Federation who say that “unless there is a specific reason to convert patients from this treatment to synthetic ‘human’ insulin, patients should not be transferred”.

Prof Teuscher writes: “The lente insulins – semilente, lente and ultralent – have long been considered desirable therapy because of their quality and long action, but were the first animal insulins to be withdrawn. I consider semilente insulin, in particular, to be one of the best insulins available because of its reliability.”

In this well researched and highly readable book, Prof Teuscher provides an overview of insulin therapy, he looks at the history of insulin and then provides an in-depth look at insulin hypoglycemia and the hazards of human insulin hypoglycemia. He looks at research demonstrating that ‘human’ and animal insulins are not the same. And then, at the heart of the book, he provides critical insight into the aggressive marketing tactics of big pharma to promote synthetic ‘human’ insulin and consequent withdrawal from the market of animal insulin. He concludes this book with an important chapter on advocacy to highlight how an alliance of physicians and patients have campaigned and continue to do so, to create public awareness of this issue in an effort to keep open access to animal insulin for those patients who choose to use it.

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Strategies for Addressing Health Care Worker Fatigue

> Highly recommended

Worker fatigue in healthcare organisations is a serious problem that can affect both patient and staff safety. And due to the continuous nature of healthcare where round-the-clock patient care is provided, health workers in many cases work long hours with the consequence that many report to work tired and are often fatigued on the job.

Strategies for Addressing Health Care Worker Fatigue is an exceptionally important book for healthcare workers and administrators who should be seeking solutions to this all too common problem, the repercussions of which can in the worst scenario lead to the accidental death of patients.

This well-researched, well-structured and easy-to-read to book looks at the causes and effects of healthcare worker fatigue with an in-depth look at the concepts of worker fatigue and burnout. It helps identify those at risk for fatigue and provides practical strategies that organisations can use to reduce and prevent these fatigue.

The authors point out that “all members of an organisation who work irregular shifts – including nurses, technicians, pharmacists, maintenance personnel, residents and physicians – should receive education on sleep deprivation and fatigue.”    

 Date of upload: 31st March 2009

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