Archive for July, 2019

  • Qld couple warn of asbestos risk and grief

    Date: 2019.07.19 | Category: 韩国半永久纹眉 | Response: 0

    When martial arts champion Adam Sager went to a doctor complaining of a sharp pain under his ribs and fatigue, he was told it was probably because he was training too hard.

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    Less than a year later, the notorious asbestos-related cancer mesothelioma had claimed his life at the tender age of 25.

    Those harrowing months, involving a shock diagnosis and multiple hospital visits – and all the days since – are an ordeal his parents, Don and Julie Sager, don’t want another family to endure.

    That’s why the Brisbane couple have become advocates calling for do-it-yourself home renovators to ensure they have all the proper safety checks conducted on their home before starting.

    The Sagers bought their first home in Townsville in the early 1980s when Adam was a toddler and, to save money, sanded back the walls themselves to prepare for painting.

    They weren’t aware the walls contained asbestos and they weren’t aware of the risk facing themselves or their baby boy.

    Mrs Sager said when Adam was diagnosed with mesothelioma in 2006, they worked backwards to their first home to work out how he could have become exposed.

    “I was stunned and Don was devastated,” she said.

    Her husband said the realisation they inadvertently endangered their son was the driving force behind making other families aware of the risk.

    “It may not be you working with the material (that’s affected), it’s those around you, you have to be careful of – the innocent bystander,” Mr Sager said.

    He said he feared there could soon be an influx of people at risk of developing the disease as older asbestos-ridden homes deteriorate.

    “All the old homes now are due for renovation and everyone’s moving into homes and that’s the first thing they do is change things, so this is why we need to make sure everyone is aware,” Mr Sager said.

    The couple were joined by Queensland Employment Minister Grace Grace and rugby league great Trevor Gillmeister to spread the message as professional asbestos removalists and tradies on Thursday worked together to rid their home of asbestos.

    Mr Gillmeister, who became an asbestos awareness advocate after his dad died of mesothelioma, said although safety checks cost money, not getting one done could cost a life.

    “You’re a boofhead if you try to do things by yourself,” he said.

    “Investigate before you renovate.”

  • Sonic warns of fee hikes, service cuts

    Date: 2019.07.19 | Category: 韩国半永久纹眉 | Response: 0

    One of Australia’s largest pathology companies fears it may have to hike patient fees and slash services in the bush if the federal government cuts funding to the sector.

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    Sonic Healthcare, which also has a large radiology business and is the country’s biggest medical centres operator, says the proposed cuts will hurt its earnings and revenues.

    It warned it may be forced to introduce new or higher patient co-payments to a wider base of patients if the cuts go ahead.

    It could also reduce service levels, particularly in rural areas.

    “These proposed changes were announced without forewarning or consultation with the medical profession or relevant industry bodies,” Sonic said in a statement on Thursday.

    Under the planned cuts, announced as part of the government’s mid-year budget update on Tuesday, changes to bulk-billing from July 1 are expected to save the government $650 million over four years.

    Bulk-billing incentives will be removed for pathology services and reduced for magnetic resonance imaging services under the planned changes.

    Incentives for diagnostic imaging will also be aligned with GP services.

    Sonic estimates the funding cuts will slice $50 million off its annual revenues and drag underlying earnings down by between five and six per cent.

    Pathology Australia has warned that some patients may choose not to have essential pathology tests because of the extra cost that will be imposed on them.

    Sonic, which owns Douglass Hanly Moir Pathology in NSW and Melbourne Pathology, appears to be holding some hope that the planned cuts will be blocked by the Senate.

    “Sonic Healthcare will work with opposition parties, consumer groups and patients to oppose these measures, as we believe they are unreasonable for the profession and patients and will jeopardise service levels and good patient care,” the company said.

  • Caltex set for record 2015 profit

    Date: 2019.07.19 | Category: 韩国半永久纹眉 | Response: 0

    Caltex Australia has forecast a record profit for 2015 on the back of weak oil prices, strong refining margins and continuing increases in marketing profits.

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    The oil refiner and distributor expects to report full year net profit between $615 million and $635 million, topping analyst estimates.

    It had posted net profit of $493 million in 2014.

    Shares in the company surged on the news, jumping nearly 12 per cent to an intra-day high of $38.49. At the close, the stock still traded $2.05 higher at $36.50.

    Caltex said it had benefited from strong operating performance at its Lytton refinery in Brisbane, which is poised to deliver earnings before interest and tax of $400 million, an 83 per cent jump from the previous year.

    Refining margins are set to average $US16 per barrel in 2015, up from $12.42 a barrel in 2014.

    Caltex has significantly reduced its dependence on the refining business with the closure of its Sydney refinery in 2014.

    However, the plunge in crude oil prices from more than $US100 a barrel last year to less than $US40 currently, combined with its own improved operational performance has sharply boosted its results.

    The company expects earnings from its supply and marketing business to improve five per cent to $675 million, despite total volumes dropping five per cent from last year.

    While Caltex said the higher earnings flowed from its focus on premium fuel sales, the numbers will raise fresh accusations of price gouging by fuel retailers.

    Earlier this week, a quarterly report by Australia’s consumer watchdog found petroleum retail margins at their highest level since monitoring began in 2002, despite cheaper crude oil.

    Caltex said its net debt at December-end will be sharply lower at $420 million, on account of stronger second-half earnings, lower crude oil prices and a lower Australian dollar.It had reported net debt of $715 million at June-end.

    The cash-rich company has been under pressure from investors to either make acquisitions or return capital after major shareholder Chevron exited earlier this year.

  • BuildingIQ makes steady start to trading

    Date: 2019.07.19 | Category: 韩国半永久纹眉 | Response: 0

    BuildingIQ, which provides software to manage energy use in buildings, is looking to expand into Southeast Asia after successfully listing on the Australian share market.

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    BuildingIQ securities, which listed at $1.00 each, closed their first day of trading on Thursday at the same price, with about 2.8 million securities changing hands.

    The securities opened at $1.01 and traded between 99 cents and $1.03.

    BuildingIQ raised $20 million in its initial public offer of 20 million Chess Depository Interests (CDIs).

    That gave the company an initial market capitalisation of about $85 million.

    BuildingIQ, which conducts 75 to 80 per cent of its business in the United States and the rest in Australia, plans to use money raised in the float to expand into new international markets.

    “We want to increase our successful footprint in Australia and the US, but we also wish to expand geographically,” BuildingIQ chairman Alan Cameron said.

    “The board will be looking at various options with respect to that pretty quickly.”

    Mr Cameron declined to specify where other than to say “places in Southeast Asia”.

    BuildingIQ was founded in Sydney in 2009, and established itself in the United States in 2012. It has headquarters near San Francisco.

    Its software, which is based on technology developed by the CSIRO, predicts and manages heating, ventilating and air conditioning (HVAC) loads in large commercial buildings.

    The software, which is linked to a building’s energy management system, calculates optimal energy use and timing based on weather forecasts, energy prices, tenant comfort, building characteristics and demand.

    It then automatically instructs the building’s energy management system to make changes to heating and cooling operations.

    For example, a building can be cooled down between 4am and 6am when energy is cheap, and by the time people start arriving for work, the building should be at the optimal temperature.

    Mr Cameron said other energy management solutions require human intervention.

    Building IQ says its software has enabled owners and building managers to use less energy and cut HVAC energy costs by 10 to 25 per cent.

    The software is best suited to large commercial buildings with a single occupant, and there are more of those types of buildings in the US than in Australia.

    BuildingIQ’s software is used in more than 140 buildings, including office blocks, hospitals, universities, hotels, government facilities, utilities and casinos in Australia and the United States.

  • Drug/alcohol ‘binges’ lead to hospital

    Date: 2019.07.19 | Category: 韩国半永久纹眉 | Response: 0

    Almost one-tenth of hospital admissions for poisoning relates to recreational drug and alcohol use.

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    And males and people under 30 are at greatest risk, says a University of Sydney study published in Drug and Alcohol Dependence.

    “Recreational poisonings are events arising from the use of alcohol, illicit or prescribed drugs for recreational purposes, or to induce psychoactive effects,” says lead author Dr Kate Chitty.

    “They represent a significant and potentially lethal form of harm associated with drug use.”

    The report is based on the records of 13,805 patients, aged 18-98, collected between January 1996 and December 2013 using data from the Hunter Area Toxicology Service.

    The Hunter findings reflect general patterns of drug and alcohol use across the country, she added.

    The study found 1209, or 8.8 per cent of the admissions, were recreational poisonings.

    Non-recreational poisonings include deliberate attempts to self harm, accidentally taking too much medication or being bitten by a venomous animal.

    Compared to them, recreational drug poisonings were three times more likely to occur between 3am and 6am than 9am to 5pm.

    They were 40 to 60 per cent more likely to occur from Friday to Sunday compared to a Monday.

    Males were 2.8 times more likely to present to hospital for recreational drug poisonings than females and those aged less than 30 were 1.6 times more likely to present than those older.

    “The finding that peak recreational poisoning admissions occurred on Fridays and Saturdays reflects a binge culture, associated with weekday restraint and weekend excess of alcohol and recreational drugs,” Dr Chitty said.

    “That we see these patterns most commonly in young people highlights that these potentially life-threatening hospital admissions are not the result of years of drug abuse but are largely associated with binge behaviour considered normal by many of Australia’s youth.”

    Half the poisonings involved one class of drug, and the rest two or more substances.

    ADMISSIONS BY DRUG TYPE

    Stimulant 527

    Alcohol 495

    Opioids 334

    Sedative 292

    Hallucinogen 224

    Cannabis 97

    Non-narcotic 87

    Ecstasy 64

    Cocaine 21