Saturday, 30 March 2019

HSA recalls 3 brands of high-blood pressure medicine used by 137,000 patients

Three brands of high-blood pressure medicine used by about 137,000 patients in Singapore have been recalled by the Health Sciences Authority (HSA) as they contain nitrosamine impurity above internationally acceptable levels.

The affected losartan medicine – Losartas, Losagen and Hyperten – contain trace amounts of N-nitroso-Nmethyl-4-aminobutyric acid (NMBA), an environmental contaminant also found in food or the environment in very minute amount, said the authority on Thursday (28 March). The announcement comes after HSA completed its tests and reviews for the affected brands on 21 March.

While there is “no immediate health risk” associated with taking the affected medicine, exposure to nitrosamines at high quantities over a long-term period may potentially increase the risk of cancer, said the HSA.


Forum: Employers should treat foreign workers with dignity

Singapore's dependence on foreign workers has become irreversible. Without construction workers from Malaysia, Myanmar, China, India and Sri Lanka, our construction industry would come to a standstill. And domestic helpers from the Philippines, Indonesia and Myanmar also play an important role in our households.

These workers enter and work in Singapore legally, often forced by circumstances to come here so that their family back home can enjoy a better life.

Coming here is not easy. I have worked with many construction workers who told me they have to raise, on average, $5,000 to pay an agent for their journey here. I employ a maid, and it is a similar story, with agent fees deducted from her monthly salary.

We hear quite frequently of cases of delayed salary and maid abuse. I appeal to employers of construction workers and of maids to treat them with dignity and respect.

Some of the stories of maid abuse that have been reported, such as physical abuse and starvation, are inhumane. Have some compassion and be more gracious towards fellow human beings, regardless of their race or nationality.

Neo Poh Goon


St John's Island, Pulau Hantu cleared of asbestos: SLA

All asbestos removal works on St John’s Island and Pulau Hantu have been completed, the Singapore Land Authority (SLA) announced on Friday (Mar 29).

SLA has since completed all asbestos removal works on St John’s Island and Pulau Hantu, and both islands will be fully reopened to the public.

The former St John’s Island Campsite and Holiday Bungalow have been renamed as the St John’s Island Lodge and overnight accommodation facilities will be reopened to the public on Jun 1, SLA said, adding that bookings are available for the St John’s Island Lodge “to increase access and encourage visitorship to the island”.

Kusu Island was cleared of asbestos last September and has been reopened to the public, SLA said in its press release on Friday.