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US drug maker fined for misleading public: The Connecticut based Purdue Frederick Company has pleaded guilty to misbranding the opiate analgesic OxyContin (oxycodone hydrochloride) with intent to defraud and mislead the public over its addictive qualities. The drug maker was fined $634.5m (£320m; €470m).
Watchdog calls for vitamin enriched bread: Bread should be fortified with folic acid to reduce birth defects such as spina bifida, the UK Food Standards Agency recommended last week. Government ministers will consider the move. There are concerns that adding the vitamin could mask a deficiency in vitamin B-12 in some patients.
Stabbing related admissions rise by almost a third: The number of stabbings resulting in hospital admissions in England has increased by almost a third in eight years. Between 1997 and 2005, admissions after an assault involving a sharp object rose from 3770 to 4891 (Journal of Public Health 2007 May 11 doi: 10.1093/pubmed/fdm018).
West African countries get $58m for yellow fever vaccines: The Gavi Alliance is to give a $58m (£29m; €43m) grant to support special immunisation campaigns in 12 west African countries at high risk of yellow fever epidemics. The aim is to vaccinate more than 48 million people in the next four years.
Extra support for families with disabled children: The UK Treasury has announced that families caring for children with disabilities are to receive £340m (€500; $670) in the next three years to improve childcare and support. Sir Al Aynsley-Green, the children's commissioner for England, said the extra cash was a good “down payment,” but called for better funding “to deliver a comprehensive and well funded service” for disabled children.
Global Fund says AIDS treatment reached a million people: The Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis, and Malaria announced this week that more than one million people with HIV have received antiretroviral treatment through the AIDS programmes that it supports, approximately doubling the results reported last year. See www.theglobalfund.org.