Tag Archives: ‘New

WHO says South America a ‘new epicentre’ of pandemic; Africa tops 100,000 cases

South America has become a new epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic with Brazil hardest-hit, while cases are rising in some African countries that so far have a relatively low death toll, the World Health Organization (WHO) said on Friday.

“The COVID-19 pandemic today reached a milestone in Africa, with more than 100,000 confirmed cases,” the WHO said in a statement, noting there were 3,100 confirmed deaths on the vast continent.

“The virus has now spread to every country in the continent since the first case was confirmed in the region 14 weeks ago.”

Dr. Matshidiso Moeti, WHO regional director for Africa, who is from Botswana, said: “For now, COVID-19 has made a soft landfall in Africa, and the continent has been spared the high numbers of deaths which have devastated other regions of the world.”

Even so, she said, “we must not be lulled into complacency as our health systems are fragile and are less able to cope with a sudden increase in cases.”

A health worker sprays disinfectants in Nairobi, Kenya, on Friday. (Baz Ratner/Reuters)

Nine African countries had 50 per cent increases in cases in the past week, while others have seen a decline or have stable rates, said Dr. Mike Ryan, WHO’s top emergencies expert.

The low mortality rate may be because half the continent’s population is 18 or younger, he said, while saying he remains worried the disease will spread on a continent with “significant gaps” in intensive care services, medical oxygen and ventilation. About half of African countries are experiencing community transmission of the virus.

A heath worker collects a sample for COVID-19 testing in Katlehong, south of Johannesburg, South Africa, on Friday. (Themba Hadebe/The Associated Press)

The situation in South America appears graver. Ryan said: “In a sense, South America has become a new epicentre for the disease.”

Brazil is the “most affected” South American country, and authorities there have approved broad use of the anti-malarial drug hydroxychloroquine for treatment of COVID-19, he said.

He reiterated that clinical evidence does not support the drug’s widespread use against the disease, given its potential side-effects.

As of Friday, Brazil had registered 330,890 coronavirus cases, passing Russia and now second only to the U.S. on the list of countries with the most cases.

WATCH | Massive cemetery built in Brazil to accommodate COVID-19 deaths:

More than 16,000 people have died due to COVID-19 in Brazil. 0:46

The country registered 1,001 daily coronavirus deaths on Friday, taking total deaths to 21,048, according to the Health Ministry.

However the true number — both of cases and deaths — is likely higher as Latin America’s top economy has been slow to ramp up testing.

WATCH | Brazil’s worsening COVID-19 crisis:

Brazil’s worsening COVID-19 crisis SUMMARY: Brazil’s already weak health-care system and an incoherent response from its political leaders to the COVID-19 pandemic have made it much more difficult for the country’s hospitals to deal with the growing number of cases, says Oliver Stuenkel, a professor and author from the Getulio Vargas Foundation in  Sao Paulo. 6:42

Infections rose and intensive-care units were also swamped in Peru, Chile and Ecuador, countries lauded for imposing early and aggressive business shutdowns and quarantines.

Many experts said the rising death toll across Latin America showed the limits of government action in a region where millions labour in informal jobs and many police forces are weak or corrupt and unable to enforce restrictions.

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CBC | World News

COVID-19 pandemic will bring a ‘new normal’ to Canada’s workplaces, top doctor says

Canada’s top doctor says that when Canada’s locked-down economic activity revives, she expects to see companies embrace a “new normal” in how they operate to prevent the further spread of COVID-19.

In the second part of a wide-ranging interview with CBC News, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam said that when Canadians return to work, it won’t be the same type of working environment that existed before the pandemic.

“I actually think businesses and Canadians will come up with ideas and I think public health is asking, ‘Well, here are some of the parameters, come up with a plan of how your workplace could potentially be redesigned,'” Tam told the CBC’s Rosemary Barton.

Tam suggested that some workplaces could get more employees to work from home, or stagger the start times of shifts so that large numbers of people don’t crowd public transportation at the same times of day.

“The new normal, when we get there, is one that is not the same as before,” Tam said  “It’s one that might see our society function in different ways.”

Watch: Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam describes what life in might look like going forward:

In an exclusive interview with CBC’s chief political correspondent Rosemary Barton, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam describes what life in Canadian cities, workplaces and homes might look like going forward. 0:56

Tam noted that travellers are now required to wear masks while flying or crossing international borders and suggested that practice could be expanded.

“How we actually maintain some sort of physical distance at the same time as certain businesses begin to open and workplaces re-adjust to the new normal — I think it will have some profound changes in society, including maybe our acceptance of people wearing masks,” she said.

Tam said that provinces will have to meet certain benchmarks before relaxing public health standards in order to prevent a resurgence of the disease.

‘Profound changes in society’

“Some of … that new normal is to make sure the epidemic curve in your local area has come down to the bottom end,” Tam said, adding that once the bottom of the curve is reached, a population has to sustain that lower number of cases and test broadly for the disease to protect hospitals from being overwhelmed.

A framework for reopening Canada’s economies, jointly agreed to by the federal, provincial and territorial governments, was released earlier today.

The plan’s preconditions for easing restrictions and reopening economies include:

  • COVID-19 transmission coming under control, so that health care systems can manage the number of new cases with “substantial” clinical care capacity and a stabilized number of hospitalizations, with the possible exception of isolated outbreaks.
  • Public health capacity that’s sufficient to test, trace and isolate cases.
  • Supports to help vulnerable groups and communities.
  • Measures to prevent the introduction and spread of COVID-19 in workplaces.
  • A plan to limit the risk of importing the virus by easing and managing restrictions on non-essential domestic travel in a coordinated manner, while recognizing that reopening international borders may happen only in later stages.

Tam also told CBC News that one of the features of the new normal will be a lack of cruise ships in Canadian waters.

“We’ll postpone the cruise ships coming into Canada and re-evaluate it,” she said. “The re-evaluation is July, but let’s just say that can’t happen here, because the introduction would be huge. You’d have thousands of passengers coming into port.”

A slow, phased-in easing of restrictions is necessary, Tam said, to avoid a second outbreak. 

“I just have the image of New York City in my head. And I think I would never want that to happen anywhere in Canada,” she said. “And if we let things resume too fast, we may get that kind of surge.”

The World Health Organization [WHO] has been accused of putting too much faith in information about the virus and its death toll coming out of China.

Watch: Theresa Tam says health experts underestimated COVID-19 and that it would be “worthwhile to examine” the WHO’s response.

In an exclusive interview, Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer Dr. Theresa Tam tells CBC’s chief political correspondent Rosemary Barton that health experts underestimated the global COVID-19 spread and that it would be “worthwhile to examine” the World Health Organization’s response. 1:29

Tam said she appreciates the challenges the WHO faced in trying to get ahead of a new and fast-moving disease.

“I think it’s a very difficult job to do, quite honestly,” Tam said. “We have a federated system with different provinces and territories. The WHO has to serve over 190 member states … The data is what it is, you’re going to have to work with information at the time that you’ve received, and it may be incomplete.

“I’m not sure if the WHO could have got more information. That I can’t necessarily know.”

Tam said that while she would welcome a review of the pandemic advice provided by the WHO, she does not fault it for its initial response because health experts all over the world “underestimated where this could go.” 

“I think it is always worthwhile to examine what went on and that is actually a normal process,” she said. “Especially after such an extraordinary and unprecedented event, we would always want that … [to] look at what could be done better.”

Personal attacks

Tam pointed out that the WHO is only as good as the information provided to it by member states. She said that while Canada prepared its response at the outset as if COVID-19 was going to be a pandemic, Canadian officials “had no concept” in the early days “whether it would become one.”

“The estimations of how transmissible the virus was and how severe it was [were] unclear at the start,” she said. “Most of my colleagues, some of whom are much more experienced than me, didn’t quite know what the situation was. I’m not sure what more could have been done.”

Tam was asked about recent personal attacks made against her — by Alberta Premier Jason Kenney, who accused her of repeating media lines from the People’s Republic of China, and by Conservative leadership candidate Derek Sloan, who asked if Tam works for China.

“I’m really busy focusing on the actual response and that is what I’m here to do,” she said.

Tam said that she copes with the personal attacks — and the more racist and misogynist abuse she receives online — by focusing “on how incredible Canadians have been” in following public health directives.

“I just sort of compartmentalize it,” she said. “I think everybody copes with these things a little bit differently.

“I’ve always been someone who represents public health in its widest scope, its determinants of health … how we treat people in different ways affects people’s health, and that’s how I sort of look at it.

“Stigmatization leads to poor health outcomes. And it does not help our collective response.”

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CBC | Health News

China reports 1st death from ‘new type of coronavirus’

Health authorities in the central Chinese city of Wuhan are reporting the first death from a new type of coronavirus.

The Wuhan Municipal Health Commission reported Saturday that seven other people were in critical condition.

It said a total of 41 were suffering from pneumonia caused by a “preliminarily determined new type of coronavirus” as of Friday, down from the earlier figure of 59. It said those were in stable condition and at least two had been released from a hospital.

Another 739 people who were in close contact with the patients, including 419 medical workers, have been placed under medical observation but no related cases have been found.

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CBC | Health News

Kim says North Korea to show ‘new strategic weapon’ amid standoff with U.S.

North Korean leader Kim Jong-un has accused the United States of dragging its feet in nuclear negotiations and warned that his country will soon show a “new strategic weapon” to the world as its bolsters its nuclear deterrent in face of “gangster-like” U.S. sanctions and pressure.

The North’s state media said Wednesday that Kim made the comments during a four-day ruling party conference held through Tuesday in the capital Pyongyang, where he declared that the North will never give up its security for economic benefits in the face of what he described as increasing U.S. hostility and nuclear threats.

“The world will witness a new strategic weapon to be possessed by the DPRK in the near future,” the state-run Korean Central News Agency said, referring to the North by its formal name, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea.

In an interview with Fox News Tuesday, U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said he hoped North Korea would “choose peace and prosperity over conflict and war.”

Kim’s comments came after a months-long standoff between Washington and Pyongyang over disagreements involving disarmament steps and the removal of sanctions imposed on the North.

“He said that we will never allow the impudent U.S. to abuse the DPRK-U.S. dialogue for meeting its sordid aim but will shift to a shocking actual action to make it pay for the pains sustained by our people so far and for the development so far restrained,” the KCNA said.

Kim added that “if the U.S. persists in its hostile policy toward the DPRK, there will never be the denuclearization on the Korean Peninsula and the DPRK will steadily develop necessary and prerequisite strategic weapons for the security of the state until the U.S. rolls back its hostile policy,” according to the agency.

No clear indication of quitting talks

However, Kim showed no clear indication of abandoning negotiations with the United States or restarting tests of nuclear bombs and intercontinental ballistic missiles he had suspended under a self-imposed moratorium in 2018.

He did issue a warning that there would be no grounds for the North to be “unilaterally bound” to the moratorium any longer, criticizing the United States for continuing its joint military exercises with rival South Korea and providing the South with advanced weaponry.

“In the past two years alone when the DPRK took pre-emptive and crucial measures of halting its nuclear test and ICBM test-fire and shutting down the nuclear-test ground for building confidence between the DPRK and the U.S., the U.S., far from responding to the former with appropriate measures, conducted tens of big and small joint military drills which its president personally promised to stop and threatened the former militarily through the shipment of ultra-modern warfare equipment” into South Korea,” the KCNA quoted Kim as saying.

Some experts say North Korea, which has always been sensitive about electoral changes in U.S. government, will avoid engaging in serious negotiations for a deal with Washington in coming months as it watches how U.S. President Donald Trump’s impending impeachment trial over his dealings with Ukraine affects the U.S. presidential election in November.

Negotiations have faltered

Kim and Trump have met three times since June 2018, but negotiations have faltered since the collapse of their second summit last February in Vietnam, where the Americans rejected North Korean demands for broad sanctions relief in exchange for a partial surrender of its nuclear capabilities.

Kim’s speech followed months of intensified testing activity and belligerent statements issued by North Korean officials, raising concerns that he was reverting to confrontation and preparing to do something provocative if Washington doesn’t back down and relieve sanctions.

The North announced in December that it performed two “crucial” tests at its long-range rocket launch site that would strengthen its nuclear deterrent, prompting speculation that it was developing an ICBM or planning a satellite launch that would provide an opportunity to advance its missile technologies.

North Korea also last year ended a 17-month pause in ballistic activity by testing a slew of solid-fuel weapons that potentially expanded its capabilities to strike targets in South Korea and Japan, including U.S. military bases there. It also threatened to lift a self-imposed moratorium on the testing of nuclear bombs and ICBMs.

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‘New Mom Project’ offers free baby gear, friendship

Sometimes life’s toughest moments can lead to unexpected new beginnings.

That’s what happened for Toronto mom and nurse Gwen Broda. She’d just started her third maternity leave when she found out she didn’t have enough hours to qualify for Employment Insurance parental benefits.

“I was really angry. I thought, ‘I’ve fallen through a gap in the system here,'” she told CBC Toronto. “It’s not fair.”

She and her partner managed to get through, but Broda says the experience opened her eyes to the struggles many less-fortunate moms face. So, she says, she turned her anger into action.

Almost six years later, she’s helped more than 1,000 moms struggling to provide the basic necessities for their kids.

She started the New Mom Project, a registered charity, out of her North York living room in 2014. 

Calling on friends and neighbours for donations of gently-used baby clothes and supplies, she delivered them to moms in need out of her SUV for the first few years.

Broda, pictured here when she first started delivering baby goods to moms in need out of her SUV, says she was inspired in part by the Baby Box program in Finland. Families receive a box filled with essentials for a new baby, regardless of income. (Submitted by: Gwen Broda)

Now she’s got an 800-square foot donation centre in the city’s east end near O’Connor Drive and St Clair Avenue East and a proper delivery truck.

“You never expect where things are going to take you,” said Broda, who runs the project while still working part-time as a visiting nurse.

“It’s the demand and non-existent other support for parents. There’s not many ways to get things for your babies that are free.”

The New Mom Project is run by volunteers and a board of directors made up of midwives, social workers, and mothers. Items, from clothing to diapers and toys, are always free. (Grant Linton/ CBC)

She says many of the clients are newcomers to Canada. The centre operates on an application basis that works with community partners, including hospitals, midwife clinics, shelters, community health centres, and Toronto Public Health programs.

Once approved, a mom can visit the centre up to five times. There is no catchment area and no age restrictions.

“It’s our goal to make sure everybody who needs it can have it,” she said.

Moms pick out the items they want and often, Broda says, they end up forging new friendships.

Many return as volunteers, she says.

Volunteers Oluwafunmilayo Kalejaiye, left, Shola Ayindeekun and Bukole Ifeshile, all newcomers from Nigeria, say the New Mom Project is a welcoming place where they can connect with other parents. (Grant Linton/ CBC)

‘It’s like a big family’

When Chanelle Blair first heard about the New Mom Project, she wasn’t so sure it was for her, but her doctor encouraged her to give it a try.

She was 20 with two small children and a third on the way. Her eldest, who was four years old at the time, needed a new car seat.

Broda showed up on her doorstep with just that and soon the two became fast friends. Now Blair volunteers her time at the centre and mentors other mothers. 

“It’s like a big family,” said Blair, now 25, and a mother of four. “Sometimes you feel alone and it’s not good to feel alone when you have a child.”

With Broda’s help, she’s training to become a personal support worker, and she’s hoping to one day open a sister organization to the New Mom Project. 

“If I can start something that could help [young moms] or feel like they have that someone of support, like what Gwen kind of gave for me. She’s more like a mother figure.”

Chanelle Blair says her dream is to give back and help others the way Broda helped her. Her hope is to offer child care and programming to help young moms finish their education and find jobs.  (Grant Linton/CBC)

Room to grow

With a wait list and moms travelling from Brampton and Mississauga to get to the donation centre, Broda hopes to expand to multiple locations.

It’s something that’s desperately needed, according to registered midwife Care Sinclair. 

She says becoming a parent can be an overwhelming experience, which is only heightened for families struggling to get access to resources.

“It can impact our mental health and impact our ability to care for ourselves and our babies,” said Sinclair, who opens up her front porch in the west end as a second donation drop-off location.

“It’s so important we have services like the New Mom Project, where we can help families get the resources, take that off their list, so we can help them spend time with their infants and make the most of the moments they’ve got — without them having to be panicked or overwhelmed by lack of diapers or lack of warm clothes.”

Support for the project is overwhelming, Broda says. ‘So many people have stuff to give and they don’t want it to just to go to Value Village or have it resold somewhere. These donations go directly to families in need.’ (Grant Linton/ CBC)

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Flyers’ Vigneault tops this year’s class of ‘new’ coaches with NHL teams

When you get a new job, most bosses will give you a bit of time to get your feet wet. Sure, they may duck into your office to make sure everything is on the right track (“Did they finally get your phone extension hooked up?”), but for the most part there is a grace period. 

The same goes for NHL coaches. 

Seven teams entered this season with new coaches behind the bench, and until now, they have been relatively free from critique because you have to give them their own grace period. 

Now that we’ve passed the quarter-mark of the season, it’s time to duck into their offices to see how these guys are doing. 

Alain Vigneault (Philadelphia)

Last year at this point: 27 points

This year: 37 points

Point differential: +10

The City of Brotherly Love is the fifth stop for Vigneault and so far so good. The most notable change comes with how he gives out ice time; last year, both Claude Giroux and Sean Couturier averaged more than 20 minutes per game and were expected to carry the load offensively, which they did. 

Vigneault hasn’t put all his eggs into that basket. Travis Konecny has been given more than two minutes more per game and now leads the team in scoring with 27 points (he had 49 all of last season). Oskar Lindblom has also done well with more ice time, as he is almost half way to his point total from last season. 

Dave Tippett (Edmonton)

Six-foot-seven goaltender Mikko Koskinen has made things easier for Dave Tippett in his first year as Edmonton Oilers head coach. (Jason Franson/Canadian Press)

Last year at this point: 32 points

This year: 37 points

Point differential: +5

When Tippett was hired to fix the mess that is the Edmonton Oilers, he said, “Everybody talks about [captain Connor] McDavid and [fellow forward Leon] Draisaitl. There are more pieces here [than them]. There are good players to build on.”

Well, McDavid and Draisaitl have done their part, and when you throw James Neal into the mix, the trio have accounted for 57 per cent of the Oilers goals this season. 

But the real difference comes on special teams. 

Their ninth-ranked power play last year is now tops in the league at 32.5 per cent, while their penalty kill — an ugly 30th in the league last season — is currently second best overall.  

Joel Quenneville (Florida)

Last year at this point: 27 points

This year: 31 points

Point differential: +4

Five points may not seem like a lot, but the Panthers are a much-improved team. Then again, when you spend a boatload of money to get a three-time Stanley Cup champion coach, you expect some immediate results.

This one is so much more than X’s and O’s; Quenneville is the very definition of a players coach. Vincent Trocheck said earlier this month that it feels “different” this year because the team is playing with confidence. 

Sometimes a coach’s toughest job is changing the culture of a room. Quenneville is already ahead of schedule with that task.

WATCH | When NHL players ate pizza and smoked:

Players in the NHL are bigger, stronger, and faster than ever, but that wasn’t always the case. Rob Pizzo asked some former players about some unhealthy habits of the past that they witnessed. 2:05

D.J. Smith (Ottawa)

Last year at this point: 27 points

This year: 23 points

Point differential: -4

Going into this season, no team or coach had lower expectations than the Ottawa Senators. Their job was simple — lose hockey games to get a shot at the No. 1 overall pick. It would seem first-time head coach Smith didn’t get the memo. 

Any other team would have looked at a November schedule that consisted of 16 games in 29 days and 11 of them on the road as a good time to mail it in. 

The Sens won eight of their first 13 games. Ottawa fans don’t know whether to cheer for them to stop winning or enjoy the ride.

Todd McLellan (L.A. Kings)

Last year at this point: 21 points

This year: 24 points

Point differential: +3​​

McClellan knew the rebuild would probably be painful and it has been. Unlike Smith, the Kings are doing exactly what people expected they would do — lose. 

While McLellan has been juggling some young players around, we can’t evaluate his job for a couple years. 

Dallas Eakins (Anaheim)

Last year at this point: 31 points

This year: 28 points

Point differential: -3

Do the Ducks look different under Eakins than they did under Randy Carlyle? Yes. 

Has it resulted in more points? Nope. 

This team needed to score more goals and Eakins has preached a possession game, which (let me put my analytics hat on here for a second) has resulted in the team sitting sixth in “high-danger chances”. However, (removes analytics hat and puts on old-school stats hat), the team sits 20th in the league in goals per game. 

If this team can start capitalizing on those chances, Eakins will start getting more pats on the back. 

Ralph Krueger (Buffalo)

Last year at this point: 37 points

This year: 31 points

Point differential: -6

Perhaps no coach in the league took a weirder path to get a job than Krueger. 

He had been serving as the chairman of the Southampton Football Club in the English Premier League, but came back to the NHL to coach the Sabres. 

Buffalo shot out of the gate (9-2-1 in October), but have since crashed back to earth. Krueger has already had to give some tough love to guys like Rasmus Dahlin (he benched him for an entire third period against the Senators), and now has lost him for a while with a concussion.

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CBC | Sports News

‘New 18 now is 28′: How screens delay teens’ emotional maturity

The number of teens who went to emergency departments in Ontario for injuring or poisoning themselves doubled from 2009 to 2017 — a surprisingly sharp rise after falling, say Canadian health-care providers. They are calling for better ways to connect young people with mental health services.

Increasing rates of self-harm among teens in Canada, the U.S., Australia and Europe are a concern in part because those who deliberately harm themselves are at greater risk for repeated injury or for suicide.

In a study published this week in the Canadian Journal of Psychiatry, researchers looked at emergency department visits by those aged 13 to 17 in Ontario, based on national data from the Canadian Institute for Health Information.

“The number of kids who have at least one visit for self-harm in a given year basically doubled from 2009 to 2017 after it had been falling consistently from 2003 to 2009,” said William Gardner, a senior scientist at the CHEO Research Institute who holds a senior research chair in child and adolescent psychiatry at the University of Ottawa.

Specifically, the rates of self-harm visits rose from 1.8 per 1,000 in 2009 to 4.2 per 1,000 by 2017. Over the same period, mental health visits for anxiety and depression, for instance, increased from 13.5 per 1,000 to 24.1.

Both pose a huge and worsening strain on the mental-health system for young people, Gardner said.

‘The new 18 now is 28’ because there is a delay in the emotional and social awareness and maturation of adult skills, says Dr. Chris Wilkes. (CBC)

The big question is why. Gardner speculated on three potential reasons:

  • The launch of the iPhone in Canada in 2008 and rising smartphone use and engagement in social media.
  • The financial downturn in 2008 and its lingering damage through job losses and family instability.
  • A greater willingness to seek help after campaigns to reduce the stigma of mental illness.

Smartphones facilitated shifts in how people of all ages socialize.

We can do a better job of taking kids who show up in the emergency department with mental health problems and getting them into care in their community.—  William Gardner

“For a certain group of vulnerable adolescents, kids who are at risk for various social and psychological problems already, a lot of them describe the experience of constant exposure to social anxiety [and] to bullying by peers as very stressful, and so that could be the cause of some of these problems.”

For most people, Gardner believes, being online isn’t terribly harmful. 

In hospitals, decreasing stigma could also mean physicians who see a laceration on the arm now ask, “Did you cut yourself?” Previously, the question wasn’t asked, and the cut would be classified as an injury, Gardner said.

But emergency departments aren’t suited for teens needing continuing mental-health care.

“We can do a better job of taking kids who show up in the emergency department with mental health problems and getting them into care in their community.”

Continuing a long-standing pattern, the increases in self-harm and emergency visits were higher among females than males.

In focus groups, girls often complain of incessant pressure to present a perfect image on Instagram, as well as a greater willingness to seek out care than boys, Gardner said.

Boys’ aggression a ‘mental health problem’

The problems boys face tend to manifest differently, such as trouble controlling their anger.

“They will get involved in various kinds of aggressive and deviant activities that could lead them to trouble with the criminal justice system, and we don’t talk about those things as mental health problems but in many ways they are.”

The study was excellent in its portrayal of a dramatic increase in self-harm happening across Canada, said Dr. Chris Wilkes. He heads the child and adolescent psychiatry division at the University of Calgary and wasn’t involved in the research.

“What we say in the area of children’s mental health and adolescent psychiatry is that the new 18 now is 28 because there is a delay in the emotional and social awareness and maturation of adult skills.”

Read eyes, not screens

More adolescents are living at home longer, often glued to screens. Wilkes called it a paradox that people have never been more connected yet alone. Online connections are no replacement for learning to read another person’s eyes — in person.

“Emotional maturation takes time and it takes real experiences with relationships, and if you spend more and more time on screen time, you have less opportunities to practise these skills.”

More broadly, Wilkes said, poorer teen relationships with parents, relatives and friends may have combined with cultural shifts to greater materialism and narcissism. Learning delayed gratification is at risk of being lost. 

Wilkes called Calgary ahead of the curve in providing walk-in mental health services in the community, in addition to national resources such as Sen. Stan Kutcher’s teenmentalhealth.org.

On the front lines, school-based programs offer the best bang for the buck in prevention, he said.

“For every dollar you invest in early development you save $ 4 to $ 9 by reduced costs in education, justice, reduced mental health utilization and better employment prospects.”

The future lies in integrating mental health and emergency department services, family and community resource hubs, acute care at home and peer support, Wilkes said.

The teen research was funded by an unrestricted grant from the ScotiaBank Foundation.

Where to get help:

Canada Suicide Prevention Service: 1-833-456-4566 (phone) | 45645 (text) | crisisservicescanada.ca (chat).

In Quebec (French): Association québécoise de prévention du suicide: 1-866-APPELLE (1-866-277-3553).

Kids Help Phone: 1-800-668-6868 (phone), www.kidshelpphone.ca (live chat counselling).

Canadian Association for Suicide Prevention: Find a 24-hour crisis centre.

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CBC | Health News

Sharon Osbourne Opens Up About Plans to Get a ‘New Face’: ‘My Next Surgery Is Booked’

Sharon Osbourne Opens Up About Plans to Get a ‘New Face’: ‘My Next Surgery Is Booked’ | Entertainment Tonight

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AMD Launches ‘New’ RX 580 With Fewer Stream Processors

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AMD has quietly launched a new version of the RX 580 with fewer stream processors and slightly lower boost clocks. The new Radeon RX 580 2048SP has, as the name implies, just 2,048 stream processors down from the 2,304 in the full version of the card. It’s not unusual for GPU manufacturers to fill out their product lines with a handful of country-specific or OEM parts created for specific markets, but AMD is splitting a rather thin hair here.

The RX 580 2048SP isn’t really an RX 580SEEAMAZON_ET_135 See Amazon ET commerce at all. It’s memory clock, GPU clock, and the number of stream processors all mark this as an RX 570, with only the tiny core clock adjustment to bring the chip’s performance up a whisker. A 3 percent clock boost isn’t going to do much for overall performance, particularly considering the reduced number of SPs. As far as we know, this chip is headed for the Chinese markets, not the West, though that could theoretically change.


It’s not unheard of for manufacturers to make subdivisions like this, as mentioned above. Back when Nvidia launched its Tesla line of GPUs (GT200, not its line of HPC accelerators and add-in boards), it quickly realized it had miscalculated. The GTX 280 and GTX 260 both got substantial price cuts just weeks after launch once AMD’s HD 4870 and HD 4850 proved to be faster and far better priced. In addition, Nvidia introduced a “GeForce 260 Core 216” edition of the GeForce GTX 260 (the original flavor had just 192 cores).

And AMD has been down this road before with Polaris. Last year, it permitted OEMs to sell RX 560 cards with just 892 cores, as opposed to the 1,024 standard. AMD’s justification for this has been that offering more flexible solutions helps OEMs sell more graphics cards to their customers at specific price points. Sure. That’s the reason companies subdivide markets in the first place. If the only GPUs you sold were priced at $ 100 and $ 1,000, you’d wind up missing an awful lot of buyers.

What people tend to take issue with is the branding, which AMD is presumably trying to head off with its 2048SP. In this case, however, it feels a bit disingenuous. Back when Nvidia built the Core 216, it was upgrading the GPU it had previously offered and introducing price cuts at the same time. The RX 580 2048SP is an RX 570 for all intents and purposes. A 3 percent boost clock improvement isn’t enough to justify a new brand or model number, but if AMD did want to introduce one, a part number like RX 575 would distinguish this card from the RX 580. Best of all, from an accuracy perspective, would be to call this an RX 570+ or something equivalent.


Switching topics slightly, we’ve seen a lot of action in the GPU market of late, with Nvidia’s Turing refresh, but we’ve seen relatively little from Team Red. There are rumors of a Polaris refresh cycle still to come this year (we haven’t heard more on that topic yet) and AMD is on track to launch its 7nm Vega as far as we know. I’ve seen some readers asking if I thought AMD had an opportunity to bring 7nm Vega to the consumer market to compete with Pascal or Turing. Looking at the performance of the RTX 2070, I think the signs still point more towards a “no,” than a yes. While Vega 64 is reasonably good competition for the GTX 1080, a 7nm Vega would need to deliver a 20-25 percent performance improvement to really carve a niche for itself. That kind of jump would put it between the RTX 2070 and RTX 2080 (or, if you prefer, between the GTX 1080 and GTX 1080 Ti). But pushing Vega performance up 20-25 percent would likely take a clock jump of equivalent size, putting the card’s clock speed between 1850 – 1930MHz.

There have been rumors that most of AMD’s engineering staff were pulled off Vega to work on Ryzen and that the design suffered for it, but AMD would have had to truly screw the pooch to leave a problem that big sitting in their GPU design. And such a problem would need to exist for Vega’s clock speed to suddenly skyrocket in such fashion, with a corresponding drop in power consumption at every clock speed. We’re not going to say it’s impossible for AMD to whip a vastly improved Vega out of its back pocket and wow everyone, but the company has given no sign of such a coup. We would expect a 7nm Vega to outperform its 14nm counterpart and to draw less power doing it, but something would have to have gone catastrophically wrong to give AMD a clock jump that huge.

To put this in perspective, when AMD moved from 28nm Fury to 14nm Vega, it was able to increase clocks by 1.18x. Boosting them by 1.2 – 1.25x more would mean AMD found a way to squeeze even more performance out of its GCN design than it got when it moved from 28nm planar to 14nm FinFET transistors. The jump from 14nm to 7nm doesn’t provide as much performance as the 28nm – 14nm shift, making this unlikely.

Now Read: Report: AMD Built Navi for Sony PS5, Delayed Vega to Do It, Does AMD’s Graphics Division Have an Identity Problem?, and AMD Demos 7nm Vega for Machine Intelligence at Computex

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