Family News

Family News
Maintaining healthy lifestyle may reduce Covid risk – HIQA

A healthy weight, regular exercise, receiving enough vitamin D, moderating alcohol consumption and not smoking all have positive effects on health and may reduce the risk of poor Covid-19 outcomes, the Health Information & Quality Authority (HIQA) has said.

They examined 46 studies which focused on modifiable health related risk factors and found mixed results were reported. Drug interventions (vaccines excluded) and non-drug interventions were considered.

HIQA said that there was a lack of high-quality evidence to suggest that any of the examined interventions were effective at reducing the risk of Covid-19, adding that there was insufficient evidence on whether ivermectin or bamlanivimab can be used safely to prevent or reduce the severity of a Covid-19 case.

As a result, the health watchdog advised that such drugs should not be used outside of regulated clinical trials.


270 Irish candidates apply to join ESA

There are 270 applications from Irish candidates among more than 22,500 people who applied to become the European Space Agency’s (ESA) next astronauts.

During the last call the ESA put out for astronauts in 2008, the number of applicants who finalised their online application form was 8,413.

Between four and six astronauts will join the ESA workforce as permanent staff members, coupled with a reserve of up to 20 people who will not immediately be hired by the agency, but will remain with their current employers until a flight opportunity is identified for them.

ESA director general Josef Aschbacher said, “My first reaction is it is: ‘Stunning.’

“This is probably historic – having so many applications, for at the end, a handful of jobs.”

“I think it also shows that space is very high on the agenda of young people, it is a dream job – being an astronaut – and this is the best proof of what we have seen,” he added.

Report finds trust in media increased over past year

Trust in the news media has increased over the past year, according to the annual Reuters Digital News Report.

The report is sponsored by the Broadcast Authority of Ireland with analysis from researchers at Dublin City University, and it found that in general, the level of public trust in the news increased over the past year, while in Ireland, 53% of consumers expressed positive levels of trust in news media.

This compares with 37% for the UK, 37% for North America and 45% for the EU.

According to the report, RTÉ is the most trusted news source for Irish consumers, with 78% of respondents saying they trusted the service.

The authors of the report said the high level of trust is because of the central role the broadcaster has played during the pandemic.