Talk Evidence - GP data, excess mortality and FDA approval

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In this Talk Evidence, Helen Macdonald, Joe Ross and Duncan Jarvies discuss what's going on in the world of EBM. Firstly, a while ago on the podcast, we concluded that excess mortality would be the best way to measure the impact of the pandemic - and now a new paper looks at different country's excess mortalitites over the past year. We're joined by author Nazrul Islam Physician-Epidemiologist at the University of Oxford (and a research editor for The BMJ) to talk about why comparisons may still not be sensible. Read the full research here - https://www.bmj.com/content/373/bmj.n1137 The Delta variant is dominating headlines, and infections in the UK now - but until recently the Alpha one was ascendent, and new research has helped characterise how the mortality rate of that variant differed from previous viruses. We discuss how that research was done. Read the full research - https://www.bmj.com/content/372/bmj.n579 GP data in the UK - the planned cut-off for granting access to your GP data for researchers has been extended, but there are still a lot of questions remaining. Helen has tried to find out some basic answers, and is still confused. Finally, the FDA has approved a new drug for treatment of dementia - and researchers (and the FDA's own panel of experts) are up in arms. Joe Ross tells us why he thinks the decision was the wrong one, and why patients may be harmed because of it.

https://edition.cnn.com/2021/06/17/opinions/biogen-alzheimers-drug-opinion-ramachandra-ross/index.html

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