World’s pioneering surgery carried out in Barcelona saves the life of a 26 week old foetus

March 13, 2012 11:12 PM | CNA / María Belmez

A medical team from the Catalan capital’s Hospital Clínic and the Sant Joan de Déu Children’s Hospital, in Greater Barcelona, cured a foetus with a lung malformation in a world pioneer intervention. The baby girl is currently 16 months old, has a normal life, and no further surgery is expected. The malformation was diagnosed in the 20th week of pregnancy, surgery took place in the 26th, and Alaitz was born in the 38th week.

A pioneer study led by a Catalan hospital supports an easier way to detect colon cancer

February 24, 2012 12:02 AM | CNA

Barcelona’s Hospital Clínic has coordinated a world pioneer medical study with 60,000 patients. The study has compared the effectiveness of early detection of colon cancer by using a colonoscopy or a specific analysis searching blood in the patients’ faeces. The findings have proven that both diagnostic tests are equally reliable. Considering the differences between the financial costs of both tests, health risks, and comfort, colonoscopy might only be used for confirmation or treatment purposes. In addition, from now on all people older than 50 might be regularly checked in an easier and cheaper manner.

Catalan healthcare is unevenly affected by the doctor strike to halt budget cuts

November 15, 2011 10:02 PM | CNA / Gaspar Pericay Coll

The trade union organising the protest has said that 70% of doctors took part in the strike, while the Catalan Ministry of Health reduced the figure to only 20%. Doctors are protesting at the budget cuts in the Catalan healthcare system in order to decrease the public deficit, which included a 5% salary reduction. The doctor’s union called for a strike on November 15th and 16th, coinciding with the negotiations on the 2012 budget and the Spanish elections. The Catalan Government stated that the strike asks for unrealistic salary increases and considered it has “failed”. 20,000 medical consultations have to be postponed.

World pioneering foetal surgery against spina bifida successfully undergone in a Catalan hospital

November 2, 2011 09:58 PM | CNA / Maria Bélmez

For the first time in the world, a foetus having the spina bifida congenital disorder went through a new intra-uterus surgery technique. A medical team from Barcelona’s Vall d’Hebron Hospital operated on the foetus in its 24th week by placing a biological fabric on the spinal cord, in order to protect it from amniotic liquid and to ease the gap’s closing. The baby is now five months old and doctors are confident she may walk without any problems.

Budget reduction puts Catalan healthcare in the spotlight

October 4, 2011 03:23 PM | CNA

The Catalan Government is obliged to reduce the public deficit and the public healthcare system is also subsequently affected by the budget cuts. Doctor and nursing unions are mobilised, while salary reduction and temporary lay offs are being discussed. Waiting lists have increased due to some hospital services being partially and temporarily closed, especially during the summer months. Many citizens have been protesting, in different demonstrations. The Catalan Health Ministry announced new maximum waiting times for severe interventions. In addition, some hospitals are reopening some operating rooms.

Catalonia reduces the less used primary health services to save money, generating citizen protests

September 2, 2011 01:55 AM | CNA

The Catalan Government is reducing public deficit and cutting public spending by 10% this year. All areas are affected, including healthcare, which is one of the departments with a smaller percentage budget reduction. Last August, 25 community health centres (CAP) reduced their opening hours, closing their emergency room during nights and weekends as they were scarcely used; as of this September, another 21 centres in a similar situation have been added to the list. Citizens have been camping in some CAPs to protest about the decision.

The 'Fundació Vicente Ferrer' and Barcelona’s Hospital Clínic decrease HIV/AIDS mortality in India

April 21, 2011 10:38 PM | CNA / Ignacio Portela Giráldez

The NGO and Barcelona's ‘Hospital Clínic’ have helped decrease HIV/AIDS from 90% to 14% in India’s Anantapur District. Both organisations renewed their agreement for another four years. The combined efforts of both organisations have provided health coverage to 90% of HIV infected patients, similar to the rate registered in a developed country.