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Health Check

Health-and-fitness • Technology

Health issues and medical breakthroughs from around the world.

Popular episodes

Covid cases across Europe

Nov 24 • 27:04
James Gallagher, BBC health and science correspondent, examines Covid case rates across Europe.

A report on a new study documenting the incidence of Typhoid in three capital cities - Blantyre, Malawi and Kathmandu, Nepal, for the first time - plus updated estimates in Dhaka, Bangladesh. Claudia discusses the role of antibiotic resistance and gets an update on a new vaccine ...

T-cell Covid protection before the pandemic

Nov 17 • 26:27
New research on how some people had a level of Covid immunity before the pandemic started. Blood samples showed hospital staff being monitored in the first wave already had protective ‘killer’ T-cells probably from exposure to other viruses related to the one that has swept the globe. The difference between antibodies to an infection and antibodies caused by a vaccine. And...

New antiviral pills to treat Covid

Nov 10 • 26:28
New antiviral pills to treat Covid are coming thick and fast. Pfizer have just announced their new antiviral Paxlovid in the same week UK’s MHRA was the first country in the world to approve Molnupiravir – Merck’s pill launched last month. So how do the two antivirals compare? And a report from the longest operating milk bank in North America. Since 1974, the Mothers’ Milk...

Hunt for rare resistance to SARS CoV-2

Nov 3 • 26:28
An International team of scientists has launched a global hunt for rare people who may be genetically resistant to SARS CoV-2 infection. Individuals who’ve been exposed to the virus living in families where everyone else in the household got infected, who repeatedly tested negative and didn’t mount an immune response. Claudia Hammond speaks to immunologist Evangelos Andrea...

Mix and match Covid vaccines

Oct 27 • 26:28
New evidence from Sweden and France on the benefits of mixing and matching doses of different types of Covid vaccine. The impact misinformation around treating Covid with Ivermectin is having on the Neglected Tropical diseases where the drug is known to work. And are oat and soy milks as nutritious as cow’s milk?

Presenter: Claudia Hammond
Producer: Erika Wright

(Picture: A...

New Covid vaccine

Oct 20 • 27:01
New Covid vaccine from Valneva produces stronger immune response when compared to AstraZeneca, the French company reports, with no severe cases of Covid-19 seen in either group. And new positive research on lateral flow tests.

Plus guest Graham Easton discusses the urgent need for teaching climate and environmental health in medical schools.

Presenter: Claudia Hammond
Produc...

Henrietta Lacks Legacy

Oct 13 • 26:27
Henrietta Lacks died in 1951 from a virulent cervical cancer. A sample of those cancer cells was taken at the time and the way they behave has changed medical science forever – contributing to everything from the polio vaccine to drugs for Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease. As the WHO give a posthumous award Claudia discusses how the Henrietta Lacks legacy raises issues ...

New antiviral Covid pill

Oct 6 • 28:42
Trials stopped early of a new Covid antiviral pill, Molnupiravir, as it may cut numbers of people in hospital by about a half. Claudia Hammond discusses the ethical questions of who should be given it. Plus Unicef report on findings about childhood mental health before and during the pandemic. And a new exhibition on the researchers and trial participants outwitting cancer...

Reducing mental health stigma

Sep 22 • 31:19
Many people have struggled with their mental health during the pandemic, but still don’t always feel free to discuss it, especially at work. Stigma remains a problem and discussing your difficulties at all is off-limits. For many years in England a campaign called Time To Change tried to change attitudes and the evidence from that and other initiatives was used to launch c...

Covid in Vietnam

Sep 15 • 27:46
In 2020 Vietnam ran a successful track and trace system, with very few coronavirus infections and for a long time no deaths at all, while other countries had thousands. In 2021 things haven’t gone so well and since July strict stay at home orders have been in place in some cities. Nga Pham, a journalist from BBC World News, and software engineer Kevin Vu talk about what li...

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