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PR and Med Ed news in brief

Our weekly round-up of PR and medical education stories.

Dental campaign success

Mouth Cancer Awareness Week 2004 was the most successful mouth cancer campaign ever said the British Dental Health Foundation. The campaign, supported by Denplan, raised awareness of the main risk factors of smoking, drinking alcohol to excess and poor diet. Using the tagline Conversation Killer it also emphasised the importance of early detection, which increases survival chances from 50 to 90 per cent. The three-year £1 million campaign will help to fund a professional education programme, as well as target high-risk communities such as the elderly and ethnic minorities, and integrate a specialist counsellor to the Foundation's Dental Helpline.

Liverpool beats obesity

A massive five-year drive to improve fitness in Liverpool is being launched this week with a record-breaking exercise session involving almost 1,000 schoolchildren. Liverpool - Active City is a partnership between the city council, the NHS and other local agencies which aims to improve the health and well being of every single resident over the next five years. The campaign aims to raise awareness of physical activities, encourage the use of green spaces and train NHS and council staff, volunteers and voluntary organisations to provide physical activities.

Sesame Street goes healthy

The children's programme Sesame Street is to educate its audience about the benefits of healthy eating. As part of the project, some of the show's favourite characters are getting nothing less than a makeover; Cookie Monster is going on a diet while Elmo has started professing a love for exercise. The producers of the show said each episode will now start with a health tip about nutrition, exercise, hygiene and rest. As part of the project, Cookie Monster, who used to sing that 'C is for cookie', will be telling viewers that biscuits are occasional treats. He now sings: 'A cookie is a sometimes food.'

Vitamin regulation laws invalid

Regulation laws to tighten up the sale of vitamin pills and health supplements were declared invalid last week. The interim advice, issued by a senior judge at the European Court of Justice in Luxembourg, found that the legislation failed to protect the rights of individuals and firms seeking to have products declared safe for sale. It was also scathing about the way the rules were drawn up, calling them ìas transparent as a black boxî. If the legal opinion is accepted by the full court, then much of the EU's Food Supplements Directive due to come into force in August may have to be rewritten.

2nd September 2008

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