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It has been a week of ups and downs in the local health news. A report states that 21 percent of Mexicans do not have access to care, but the efforts of public institutions to promote childcare continue. In international news, the biohacker community mourns the death of Aaron Traywick, who was launched into the spotlight this February after injecting himself with a DIY herpes drug. The world was also reminded of the dangers of asthma with World Asthma Day. Allergan and Pfizer had a rough week but Johnson & Johnson came up smelling of roses with a US$1 billion bet on viral immunotherapy.

Scientists are getting closer to understanding what causes humans to burn fat. Recently, a hormone enhancement after exercise was linked with increased fatty acid uptake. Scientist were surprised to find that the enhanced hormone was the same one that the body released while exposed to the cold.

For an outlook on the ways Big Data can support all areas of healthcare, check Mexico Health Review’s interview of the week with Ignacio García-Téllez, Director of Health of KPMG Mexico.

Now, jump into last week’s highlights:

 

NATIONAL

Recent survey “Mexicans’ Health” indicates that 21 percent of citizens do not have access to healthcare. Of those who do, 80 percent relies on the public sector, 15 percent have private insurance and 5 percent have both.

IMSS inaugurates its first palliative care unit for children in Centro Médico Nacional Siglo XXI, in Mexico City. The unit aims to provide care for minors with cancer and other serious diseases.

ISSSTE promotes a healthy eating program to prevent obesity in children. 35,000 children are now participating.

 

INTERNATIONAL

May 1 was World Asthma Day, a date celebrated the first Tuesday of May that aims to promote awareness and care around the globe.

Botox manufacturer Allergan is going through a rough patch. After nine months of a dropping stock, the company received more bad news in the shape of a US$639 million bust of its psoriasis drug.

Pfizer also had a bad week, reporting sluggish sales for its first quarter and disappointing investors. However, the pharmaceutical’s innovative medicine division shows a promising 6 percent growth.

Johnson & Johnson buys biotech BeneVir for US$1 billion. The pharma giant is interested in BeneVir’s T-Stealth platform, an oncolytic viral immunotherapy.

Biohacker Aaron Traywick, famous for promoting self-design and self-administration of gene therapies and for injecting himself with a DIY herpes drug, died at 28. The causes of his death are being investigated.

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