Health News update is a weekly news collation of health news which is shared on the Repro health list serve and archived on this website.

Health News

March 2008

Pharma biggies step up focus at home

31 Mar 2008, IST,Rupali Mukherjee,TNN
W DELHI: Domestic companies led by Cipla are dominating the show in the organized pharma retail market, while the lone multinational player in the top five is GlaxoSmithKline (GSK).

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Medical tourism is waste of resources if poor not treated: Health Secretary

New Delhi | March 30, 2008 IST
Medical tourism might be the new buzzword for the burgeoning healthcare industry in India but one of the country's top health officials calls it a "waste of resources" if the money earned by private hospitals is not used to treat the poor.

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Sex education manual: No sex please, it's a schoolbook

30 Mar 2008, IST,Kounteya Sinha,TNN
NEW DELHI: It's a sex education manual, all right, but one that will have no pictures of the human anatomy or even much use of the phrase "sexual intercourse"

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Sex education in 1.5 lakh schools soon

30 Mar 2008, IST,Kounteya Sinha,TNN
W DELHI: Commenting on the 'milder' version of the new sex education manual that was submitted to the National AIDS Control Organisation (Naco), director-general K Sujatha Rao said, "We hope the nine states that raised objections over the material earlier will lift their ban on sex education as a subject after seeing the new manual. We are making separate advocacy manuals for teachers and principals."

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Govt. trying to universalise institutional deliveries: Sheila

March 29, 2008
NEW DELHI: Launching a new "Mamta" scheme to bring down maternal and infant mortality, Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit said her government was committed to providing quality health care for the citizens, especially mothers and children.

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Touts took a cut of the nasbandi cut

29 Mar 2008, IST,Hitarth Pandya ,TNN
BHARUCH: It is now established that motivators broke every rule in the book while luring hundreds of slum-dwellers in Bharuch into undergoing vasectomies. But the extent to which they went can be gauged from the fact that they used touts to get as many victims as possible to earn that extra buck.

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Paswan urges Pawar to take a call on drug policy

29 Mar 2008, IST,Rupali Mukherjee,TNN
NEW DELHI: Concerned with the delay, chemicals minister Ram Vilas Paswan has urged the group of ministers (GoM) chairman Sharad Pawar to take a final view on the national pharma policy.

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Govt docs get nod for pvt practice

29 Mar 2008, IST,TNN
NAGPUR: Finally taking cognisance of talent crunch in state government-run medical colleges, the Medical Education and Drugs Department (MEDD) has allowed private practice for teachers of government medical, dental and ayurvedic colleges.

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Vasectomy racket traps bachelors

28 Mar 2008, IST,Hitarth Pandya & Yogesh Pareek,TNN
BHARUCH: Shankar Vasava, 24, a daily-wager from Bharuch, had made all plans of marrying his girlfriend. But on Thursday, he has left her and decided never to get married

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120,000 people drinking poisoned water: minister

Patna | March 28, 2008 IST
High level of arsenic in groundwater has affected 120,000 people in 12 Bihar districts, including capital Patna, says the state's Public Health and Engineering Department Minister Prem Kumar.

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Trusts, societies may be kept out of hospital PPPs

28 March 2008
The government's proposed scheme to invite private players to run hospitals and schools in partnership with it might not be open to the most preferred business vehicles in these sectors - trusts and societies.

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Lose your fertility or job'

26 Mar 2008, IST,Yogesh Pareek,TNN
BHARUCH: Chhotu Jeeva Harijan, a railway employee who is not sure about his age, distinctly remembers about the threat issued to him and his colleagues by the government if they refused to undergo vasectomy.

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TB strain reaches record levels: UN

26 Mar 2008, IST,PTI
NEW YORK: The multi-drug resistant form of tuberculosis is reaching its highest levels ever recorded overwhelming the ability of health-care systems around the world to treat sufferers, the United Nations envoy for efforts to fight the disease has said.

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Increase maternity leave to 6 months: Pay Commission

March 25, 2008
NEW DELHI: Keeping in view the dual responsibilities of the working women and increasing practical difficulties in balancing work and family responsibilities, the Sixth Central Pay Commission has recommended enhancement of maternity leave up to six months and introduced the concept of staggered working hours for women employees to give flexibility to employees to work either early or late depending on their requirements at home.

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No nashabandi, just nasbandi

25 Mar 2008,IST,Harish Joshi & Yogesh Pareek,TNN
BHARUCH: Chhagan Vasava, an unmarried youth from Bharuch, had started saving small amounts of money from his meagre earnings as a house painter for his marriage. But, he is unlikely to get a bride now as he has been tricked into undergoing a vasectomy even before he could get married.

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UN calls for action to end TB epidemic

25 Mar 2008, IST,PTI
UNITED NATIONS: United Nations Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called for waging a war against root causes of tuberculosis (TB) which kills 4,000 people a day.

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Himachal Govt. to launch health campaign in schools

March 25, 2008
Concern over rise in anemia cases among students

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Soon, law to protect HIV+ patients from bias

24 Mar 2008, IST,TNN & AGENCIES,TIMES NEWS NETWORK & AGENCIES
NEW DELHI/MUMBAI: Denying patients suffering from HIV their right to work and any discrimination in their treatment could soon lead to jail terms.

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'Fake drugs still flooding market'

March 24, 2008
Berhampur: Nothing much has been done to root out fake drugs racket in the state, allege pharmacists of south Orissa. Police had busted a fake drugs manufacturing unit in Bolangir district last year following allegations of sale of fake and spurious drugs in different parts of the State.

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World TB Day: 'Women, children worst hit'

24 Mar 2008, IST,Kounteya Sinha,TNN
New Delhi: It's a menace that is making women lose their homes and
forcing children to drop out of school.

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State claims 86 p.c. success under TB control programme

March 24, 2008
Bhubaneswar: With the State geared up to observe World Tuberculosis Day on Monday, Orissa Government on Sunday claimed it had been able to achieve 86 per cent success in direct observed treatment (DOT) being adopted in TB control programme.

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Doctors concerned over rise in diseases due to polluted water

March 24, 2008
Cases of typhoid, hepatitis, gastroenteritis have increased in Jaipur

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Govt set to fight drug-resistant TB

24 Mar 2008, IST,Kounteya Sinha,TNN
New delhi: With drugs commonly used to treat tuberculosis failing to
cure an estimated 70,000 Indians annually, the country is finally
getting serious about combating multi-drug resistant TB (MDR-TB).

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Institutional deliveries: States move ahead

24th March, 2008, Aarti Dhar
New delhi: Even as the States showed a remarkable improvement in their
health indicators, particularly in promoting institutional deliveries,
after the launch of the ambitious National Rural Health Mission, the
common review mission (CRM) has stressed the need for timely release
of funds for various components of the scheme, especially the Janani
Suraksha Yojana.

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A third of world's TB cases in Southeast Asia, India toll high

March 24, 2008 IST
New Delhi: Three million people develop tuberculosis in the Southeast Asian region every year, India reporting 22 percent of these, and over half a million die of the disease, says the latest World Health Organisation (WHO) report released Monday.

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India has highest TB prevalence: WHO

March 24, 2008 IST
New Delhi: India is home to over 3.4 million tuberculosis patients - about one-fifth of the global figure - making it the most TB prevalent country, says the World Health Organisation (WHO) report released Monday

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Goa, Bihar doing worse in controlling TB: report

March 24, 2008 IST
New Delhi :Goa, Bihar, Pondicherry and Meghalaya are doing worse in controlling tuberculosis in India, a new report card said Monday on the occasion of the World TB Day.

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Medical parks across the country: Ramadoss

24 March 2008
Medical parks will soon be built across the country for makers of diagnostic equipment to set up plants thereby reducing manufacturing costs and making it easily available, Union Health Minister Anbumani Ramadoss recently.

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GMC runs short of life-saving drugs

March 23, 2008, Ravi Krishnan Khajuria, Tribune News Service
Jammu: Even as the coalition government has embarked on expansion of the
existing emergency ward at Government Medical College (GMC) here at a
cost of over Rs 6 crore, improper working conditions and the problem
of understaffed medicos have hit patients severely.

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Over 325,000 Indians die of TB every year

New Delhi | March 23, 2008 IST
India is home to over 3.4 million tuberculosis patients at any time - about one-fifth of the global figure, making it the country with the most TB prevalence - and over 325,000 people die of the disease every year

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For every 1,000 Delhiites, only 2 hospital beds

22 Mar 2008, ST,Abantika Ghosh,TNN
NEW DELHI: Here's what you missed out on in the flurry of foundation stone laying ceremonies, inaugurations of new hospitals and the public posturing over making Delhi a global destination for medical tourism.

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Easier health insurance policies soon

20 Mar 2008, IST,Arti Sharma,TNN
MUMBAI: Understanding your health insurance policy will become slightly easier after June 1 this year. In a bid to become customer friendly and transparent, the general insurance industry will adopt a common definition of pre-existing diseases across companies and policies.

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Lok Sabha passes Maternity Benefit Bill

March 20, 2008
NEW DELHI: The Lok Sabha on Wednesday passed a Bill providing for enhancement of maternity bonus from Rs. 250 to Rs. 1,000 for working women.

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US seeks India's help to improve global healthcare

Washington | March 19, 2008 IST
The US is seeking additional scientific, regulatory and technical collaboration with India as a means to improve healthcare outcomes for patients around the world.

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India tops in TB prevalence, drug resistance alarming: WHO

New Delhi | March 18, 2008 IST
India is number one in terms of tuberculosis (TB) prevalence and an alarming 17 percent patients have developed multi-drug resistance, the World Health Organisation (WHO) said Tuesday.

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Free lunch scheme for pregnant women in PHCs to be extended

March 17, 2008
Madurai: In yet another maternal care project aimed at benefiting rural women, the State government has decided to provide free food to all pregnant women who visit primary health centres (PHCs) for a check-up.

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Bid to strengthen basic health services in Delhi

March 17, 2008
New Delhi: The Delhi Government's Health Department has recruited over 2,000 accredited social health activists (ASHA) under the National Health Mission to make basic health services available to the lowest strata of society in the Capital.

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Study identifies multiple health risks faced by Chennai's slum population

March 16, 2008
Puducherry: Plagued with problems of multiple health risks, primarily water-borne and vector-borne diseases, the slum population in Chennai tends to go low on health-seeking behaviour, a project on 'Health Vulnerability in Chennai' revealed.

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Patent on AIDS drugs could hike costs: Govt

March 15, 2008
NEW DELHI: Government on Friday said granting of patents to HIV/AIDS drugs might increase cost of the medicines and create problems for patients, although the country's Patent Act has safeguards to such situations.

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UNDP poverty alleviation plan for BIMARU States

March 15, 2008
MADURAI: The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) has chalked out a poverty alleviation plan for BIMARU States — Bihar, Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh.

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HIV-positive women seek a better deal

March 15, 2008
JAIPUR: HIV-positive women have sought job cards under the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGA) and subsidized grain through the Public Distribution System and Antyodaya Anna Yogna.

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Relax '1-child' norm: China advisers

15 Mar 2008, IST,REUTERS
BEIJING: China faces a grim mismatch between population and social needs unless it soon relaxes its one-child rule, government advisers and experts have warned, stoking fresh debate about the once untouchable policy.

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'Antibiotics are over prescribed'

15 Mar 2008, IST,REUTERS
LONDON: Doctors are overprescribing antibiotics for common sinus infections and related conditions, possibly in the false belief they may help in cases where symptoms are protracted, researchers reported on Friday.

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Buddhadeb seeks report on treatment of women patients

March 14, 2008
KOLKATA: Chief Minister Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee has sought a detailed report from the State's Heath department on women patients of the government-run Pavlov Mental Hospital in the city reportedly being kept naked on the pretext that their clothes had been sent to the laundry.

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Honorarium for anganwadi workers

March 14, 2008
BHUBANESWAR: Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik on Thursday announced that his government sanctioned an honorarium of Rs. 500 per month for anganwadi workers and an honorarium of Rs. 250 per month for anganwadi helpers with effect from April 1 this year.

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World Bank, India to jointly stamp out corruption in health sector

Washington | March 14, 2008 IST
The World Bank Group and the Indian government will launch joint action to stamp out corruption after a bank probe "found serious indicators of fraud and corruption in the health sector".

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Bihar throws up 99 new polio cases

Patna | March 14, 2008 IST
The battle against polio is far from over in Bihar, which has the highest incidence of the disease in India and recorded 99 new cases in the first 40 days of 2008.

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Failure in Europe, but India continues AIDS vaccine trial

New Delhi | March 14, 2008 IST
India decided to continue the AIDS vaccine trial to find its impact on its population which is ethnically different from Europe, where the results proved less encouraging, parliament was informed Friday.

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Social stigma weakening India's fight against TB

New Delhi | March 14, 2008 IST
India lags far behind developed countries in managing tuberculosis (TB) because of the social stigma attached to it and health workers are particularly vulnerable to the disease, says a new report.

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Emergency polio drive starts in Delhi

New Delhi | March 13, 2008 IST
The Delhi government Thursday started an emergency polio immunisation drive and authorities went door to door to administer drops to children below five years.

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Newborn dies in incubator

March 13, 2008
AHMEDABAD: In a tragic incident, a newborn baby died due to electric short-circuit in an incubator in a hospital run by the Ahmedabad Municipal Corporation on Tuesday night.

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Researchers uncover how TB turns immune against only available treatment

Washington | March 13, 2008 IST
University of Leicester researchers have made a breakthrough in the fight against tuberculosis by finding how the TB bacterium becomes resistant to one of the only available treatments.

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Pvt hospitals opposed in rural areas

10 Mar 2008, 0253 hrs IST,TNN
PUNE: A city-based non-profit organisation working in healthcare segment, Arogya Sena, has opposed the decision of the Union government to allow private hospitals in rural areas on the grounds that they will focus only on profit making than offer services to the needy.

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Pharma companies face pricing pressure

10 Mar 2008, IST,Rupali Mukherjee,TNN
NEW DELHI: Depreciating foreign currencies and pricing pressure in the generics business will eat into bottomline and revenue of domestic pharmaceutical companies this year. While the industry will be affected by depreciation due to its exposure to exports, revenues may be under pressure with the rising competition in major markets like US.

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20 UP districts have high arsenic in ground water

8 Mar 2008, IST,IANS
LUCKNOW: As many as 20 districts of Uttar Pradesh have alarmingly high arsenic content in the groundwater and the state government is at its wits' end on ways to clean up the affected sources or to prevent further pollution.

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Haemoglobin disorder hits 3.7 crore

8 Mar 2008, IST,PTI
KOLKATA: Other than the well known heart disease and cancer afflictions in the country, a lesser-known disease - inherited haemoglobin disorder - has struck people with a vengeance.

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India world's biggest polio worry

7 Mar 2008, IST,Kounteya Sinha,TNN
NEW DELHI: Just two months into 2008 and India has already earned itself the dubious distinction of having the world's highest number of polio cases till now this year.

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Medicine crunch to hit patients

7 Mar 2008, IST,TNN
LUCKNOW: Those suffering from depression, heart problems and asthma may soon face a shortage of medicines.

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Poor in 429 cities to benefit from health mission

7 Mar 2008, IST,Kounteya Sinha,TNN

NEW DELHI: A National Urban Health Mission (NUHM), which will monitor and improve the health of 22 crore people living in urban slums in 429 cities and towns, will be launched in May.

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Female condom for Rs 5 in India

6 Mar 2008, IST,Kounteya Sinha,TNN
NEW DELHI: A five-rupee female condom (FC) will now spearhead India's fight to control HIV spread among women.

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Seventy percent children anaemic, government to take steps

New Delhi | March 05, 2008 IST
Concerned by the whopping number of children in the age group of six to 59 months suffering from anaemia, the government is taking several steps, including providing supplementary and fortifying food and vitamins supplements to rectify the malady.

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India sets up board to develop new drugs

New Delhi | March 05, 2008 IST
In its quest to develop new drugs, India has set up a Drug Development Promotion Board (DDPB), Minister of State for Health and Family Welfare Panabaka Lakshmi said Wednesday.

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Illegal medicines becoming bigger in drug smuggling trade

New Delhi | March 05, 2008 IST
The quantity of heroin smuggled into India from Pakistan keeps going up, while there is a growing menace in the illegal drug trade - pharmaceuticals meant for abuse are being smuggled from India to all other South Asian countries in increasing quantities, said a UN report released here Wednesday.

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Govt plans step to cut drug prices

March 04, 2008, IST,Rupali Mukherjee,TNN
NEW DELHI: The government is planning to issue an advisory to drug companies if they do not pass on the excise duty benefit to the consumer.

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Pact signed on use of HIV treatment drug

March 3, 2008
NEW DELHI: The International Partnership for Microbicides (IPM) has signed an agreement with pharmaceutical company Pfizer under which the pharma major will give IPM a royalty-free license to use maraviroc, its newly approved HIV treatment, as a microbicide for the prevention of HIV infection.

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Health camp for women in all dists

3 Mar 2008, IST,TNN
LUCKNOW: The vicious circle of morbid maternal health can be detoured. The key lies in controlling anaemia and malnutrition among women and children, said Dr LB Prasad, director general, health and family welfare, UP.

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Wild polio virus claims one in city

2 Mar 2008, IST,Kounteya Sinha,TNN
NEW DELHI: This year's first P1 wild polio virus strain has been isolated in Delhi. Fourteen-month-old Gulnaz from Darbangia colony in Kirti Nagar area is the victim.

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Vaccine that ended smallpox destroyed

March 2, 2008
Atlanta: The U.S. government has announced it has said goodbye to one of the world's greatest lifesavers — the original smallpox vaccine.

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15 % hike for health sector

March 01, 2008
NEW DELHI: The proposed budgetary allocation for the health sector — including the North-Eastern region — is Rs. 16, 534 crore, marking an increase of 15 per cent over the previous year allocation.

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NGO to provide health care to one lakh people

March 1, 2008
CUTTACK: The Orissa Institute of Medical Research and Health Services (Omrah), a state level NGO which has been engaged in providing basic healthcare facilities to under-served poor people in rural areas for last 20 years has been selected as the first "Service NGO" of the State under the National Rural Health Mission programme.

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