Archive for July, 2015


Wednesday, July 29th, 2015

Examples of how it works & who has used it with success


Henry Sapiecha

Young people opt for euthanasia drug as overall number of suicide deaths grows in Australia

Tuesday, July 14th, 2015

nebutol suicide substance image

More Australians are taking their own lives with a drug recommended by euthanasia groups, including people aged in their teens, 20s and 30s.

New data from the national coronial information system shows 120 people died by taking Nembutal – dubbed the “peaceful pill” – between July 2000 and December 2012.

The number of deaths from the drug reached a high of 24 in 2011, compared with nine in 2001. In 2012, there were 17 deaths. However, there may be more as the data obtained by Fairfax Media does not include cases before the coroner.

Voluntary euthanasia campaigners say the actual number of Nembutal deaths is even higher, as many deaths are not reported to the coroner and people who use the drug to take their lives take steps to make it look like the death is of natural causes.

The deaths included one person under the age of 20, 11 people in their 20s and 14 people in their 30s.

People aged over 60 made up more than half of the deaths in the same period.

There has also been the biggest increase in Nembutal deaths in this age group.

Euthanasia campaigner Philip Nitschke said the figures reflected that the drug was getting easier to obtain and was displacing some more violent methods.

He said the fact younger people were accessing the drug should be balanced against “the very large number of people who get immense comfort from knowing they have a safety net in place”.

Dr Nitschke said he was facing 12 complaints to the Medical Board of Australia over the involvement of his organisation, Exit International, in several deaths over the past decade.

Last week, the Northern Territory Supreme Court found the board acted unlawfully in using emergency powers to suspend Dr Nitschke’s medical licence.

The full case against him will be heard in November.

Dying with Dignity Victoria vice-president Rodney Syme said some of the deaths in younger age brackets could have involved people with incurable diseases who had obtained the drug.

“Intolerable and unrelievable suffering is not confined by age,” he said.

Dr Syme, who has been obtaining Nembutal for terminally ill patients for more than 20 years, said he once handed the drug to a 30-year-old woman with incurable brain cancer, although the woman never used it and died four years later in palliative care.

In Australia, Nembutal is used by vets to euthanise animals.

The coroner’s figures show that while in most cases the means of obtaining the drug were unknown, 20 people obtained the drug from overseas and 22 from a workplace.

Paul Russell of HOPE, an organisation devoted to preventing euthanasia and assisted suicide, said the data was concerning and something suicide prevention organisations should be heeding.

“We need to find more effective ways of helping people [who] are feeling desperate from going to these clandestine organisations,” he said.

Over the past 10 years, Australian Bureau of Statistics figures show there have been 2300 suicides a year on average, with people under 30 making up 22 per cent of all deaths.

For help or information, contact:

Lifeline 131 114

beyondblue 1300 224 636

SuicideLine 1300 651 251


Henry Sapiecha

LONG LIFE & HAPPINESS-A century on Earth: Centenarians share stories of life, love and lasting memories

Sunday, July 12th, 2015

These are the stories of a number of happy over 100 years of age people who have reached that magic milestone of 100years on this earth. Something must be going right for them…Read on..>

Joanna Barrett, 101


The happiest time of my life was when I got married to my husband. We met at a party. We did lots of lovely things together – we went scuba diving, we went riding on scooters and in motor cars and on horseback. I like going fast.

Joanna Barrett pictured scuba diving.


Joanna Barrett was born and raised in Glenelg, Adelaide. As a girl she enjoyed swimming and tennis. She met her husband Roderick at a party during one of his trips to South Australia from Melbourne for a motor race. They married in 1937 and moved to the Melbourne suburb of Hawthorn and Joanna became a mother during the war. Joanna volunteered by knitting socks and clothing for soldiers. She has always had a love for music, theatre and travel.

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Margaret McGeown, 100


I worked in Queen’s University in the Great Hall and we served the Queen, she had her lunch there. It was wonderful. I can’t explain it. We talked about it for hours after it. I couldn’t tell you what we served her.

Margaret McGeown pitcured with her husband, Bertie, while living in Northern Ireland.


Margaret McGeown was born in Northern Ireland in June 1915. As a young woman, her favourite thing to do was bake. She was 25 when she married her husband, Bertie, who worked on the Titanic in the Harland and Wolff shipyard in Belfast. They had four children and moved to Australia in the early 1970s. Only a couple of years later Bertie passed away suddenly from a heart condition. Margaret was born into a devout Protestant family and continues to go to church every Sunday. She said eating a banana every morning was one of her secrets to a long life.

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Millie Andrews, 100


The most successful moment of my life was getting the OAM medal, it was recognising my work done for children with disabilities. I got that on my 100th birthday.

Millie Andrews (centre) with children at Scope Chislon Centre.


Mildred Andrews was born in the Melbourne suburb of Williamstown and lived there for 90 years. As a young woman she began working in the woollen mill in Yarraville, where she made the two-hour round trip on foot to and from work every day. During the war she made khaki for the soldiers while her husband Jack served in the Navy. After having her daughter Susan, she began helping a friend look after her baby who had cerebral palsy. What started with one baby soon turned into eight, and commenced more than 30 years of tireless volunteer work and fundraising for the organisation she founded, Scope Chislon Centre, formerly known as the Footscray Spastic Children’s Centre. She was awarded an Order of Australia medal from Governor General Peter Cosgrove this year. She said she felt blessed to be alive at 100.

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Ron Bennett, 102


I was mad about my wife. I first saw her on the tram and my heart was racing. She was beautiful. She and her twin sister used to pose for Myer. We used to sit in the back seat of the car and cuddle for hours.

Ron Bennett pictured with his wife Isabelle on their honeymoon at Lorne, Victoria.


Ron Bennett grew up in the Melbourne suburb of St Kilda and was one of six boys. Ron served in the Second World War in Egypt, Syria, Lebanon and Greece with the 2/5 Battalion, marrying his wife Isabelle while he returned to Australia on leave. They had four children and lived in Ringwood, Gippsland, Sorrento and later in Brighton. After the war Ron went on to work in the wool and clothing industry as a tax agent, and then went on to help run his family’s tea and coffee business until the age of 90. His wife Isabelle passed away three years ago at the age of 93. He puts his longevity down to only mildly drinking and no smoking.

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Florence Smith, 100


My happiest moment in life was when they told me in St Vincent’s Hospital that I was able to go home after about eight weeks of near-death. I had pneumonia and pleurisy, I had an abscess in the lung. I was only in my 20s, and here I am in my hundreds.

Florence Smith

Florence Smith grew up in the gold mining town of Gaffneys Creek, near Victoria’s alpine region. She moved to Melbourne as a teenager to live with an aunty and began working in a fruit shop and enjoyed going to dances. She then started working as a cleaner and waitress in various hotels and guest houses. At the age of 20 she married her husband and had three children, setting up their family home in Coburg where she has lived for most of her life. She said staying away from alcohol was the biggest lesson life had taught her.

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Mabel Handasyde, 100


I wouldn’t change anything. I don’t think I’d do anything that I didn’t do, I don’t think I did anything that I shouldn’t have done. If I died tonight, I’d be satisfied.

A young portrait of Mabel Handasyde that was a gift to her husband.


Mabel Handasyde grew up in Mount Evelyn, north-east of Melbourne, before moving to the city as a teenager. Knitting and dancing were her favourite things to do when she was a young woman. She worked at Harbig’s flower factory in Hawthorn for 40 years, where she arranged flowers. It was there that she met her husband Frederick, who she married in 1939. She said good living and good food had kept her g

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Roy Pedder, 100


The most successful moment of my life was the day I started my suspension business. While we struggled to eat in the first few years, it gradually got bigger and bigger and bigger and we became quite famous. I was 93 or 94 when I finished up.

Roy Pedder pictured third from left with his brothers in country Victoria.


Roy Pedder grew up in Piangil in country Victoria where his father sank dams for soldier settlers. They later moved to near Mildura to farm wheat. After the family lost the farm, Roy, then in his early 20s, and his brother travelled across Victoria on their push bikes, working in fruit picking and mail boat delivery. They then snuck onto The Ghan and headed to the Northern Territory, where Roy worked in gold mining and on the rails. He was in Tennant Creek when the war broke

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Stella Shaw, 100


Once I no longer had a husband, I was rushed by a number of men who felt that I was going to need their services, and I didn’t fancy any of them. I had only ever really known one man, Chester. He was my one love and he was wonderful.

Stella Shaw pictured with her husband on their wedding day.


Born in Bondi, Stella’s father Harry Thompson was a cycling champion and master builder. During the Great Depression, Stella was pulled out of boarding school because her father’s family building business was almost sent broke, and in the meantime they survived by farming chooks. In her teens and early 20s, Stella travelled the world and saw Mussolini speak in Rome. She was in England helping to assemble gas masks when the radio announcement declaring war

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Jean Forster, 101


I loved to dance. My brother and I used to love going to the football and we had a penny to spend. I had a lovely life. I don’t worry about anything, what’s the use in worrying? It doesn’t get you anywhere.

Jean Forster in Sydney, 1941.

jean-forster-1941-data image

Born in Carlton, one of seven children, Jean had a twin brother named Eric and had another set of twins amongst her siblings. A mad supporter of Essendon Football Club, she went to school with club legend Dick Reynolds. She went on to work as a dress maker and had one child with her first husband. She later married her second husband, Reg, and had another three children, setting up their family home in Ormond. When Reg retired they travelled the world together.
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Henry Sapiecha


Saturday, July 11th, 2015

The Fata Failure gets life for deceiving & killing cancer patients in a USA clinic

Dr Farid Fata has been jailed for 45 years image

Read the full story here >>Alpha_Dista_Icon_57

How Alasdair Wilkins lost 45kg just by walking

Wednesday, July 8th, 2015

Alasdair walked briskly for an hour on the treadmill everyday for a year image

ALASDAIR Wilkins lost 45kg in a year without having to nibble on kale salads or battle through spin classes in expensive Lycra. He reckons his weight loss “secret” is actually “pretty dumb”.

“Basically, I just went to the gym and I walked. On a treadmill, uphill, at a brisk pace, for about an hour every day — and I do mean every day,” he wrote in a piece for Vox, which has been shared almost 10,000 times and attracted hundreds of comments.

The 27-year-old masters student weighed 129kg just 12 months ago. Alasdair was freelancing, he’d just moved out of his parents’ house (and away from their well-stocked fridge) and had lots of free time on his hands. It was the perfect time to lose weight.

“Like a lot of people who struggle with their weight, I was intimidated by the gym,” he told “But there was one machine I could use without the help of a personal trainer and that was the treadmill. So I just started there because it’s the easiest.”

He exercised solo everyday while watching Netflix on his iPad and the weight gradually started to come off.

Alasdair before he lost the weight.image

Alasdair before he lost the weight.

“I couldn’t jog. I would get out of breath just walking 8km/hr. Now I can do 12km/hr. Maybe this wasn’t the optimum way to work out, but it was the best way for me to get better and feel better about myself,” he said.

“I just found something that I enjoyed doing and that worked for me. When people say, ‘I love working out’, I always thought that was such a crazy ridiculous thing to say, because I couldn’t imagine thinking like that.

“What works for some won’t work for others. The big mistake people make is assuming that there is one right way for everyone to lose weight. It varies from person to person.”

Alasdair said his self esteem started to improve after losing 9kg.

“If you’re overweight or trying to lose weight, I think it’s really important to realise you don’t need to lose all of it immediately to feel better about yourself.

“Around the 27kg mark, that was when a lot of the very tightly held self loathing just started to unravel. When you’ve had low self esteem for such a long time, you don’t necessarily feel like you’re getting a lot of traction in your life.

“I didn’t lose 100 pounds because I have amazing willpower. There’s 26 years of evidence to show that I have very mediocre willpower. I just found a routine that I actually enjoyed and stuck with it.”

Alasdair says he didn’t change his diet too much.image

Alasdair says he didn’t change his diet too much.

Alasdair wrote that he didn’t adjust his diet — just ate smaller portions.

“It was a lot easier for me to hop on a treadmill than to cut portions, at least at first. So I just ignored the (frequently contradictory) mountains of literature on the best way to lose weight and just focused on finding a way that worked for me,” he wrote.

At the close of his piece, Alasdair makes an interesting observation about the difference between how overweight men and women are perceived.

“An advantage I had, both while being fat and while losing weight was that as a man, I could live in a space largely free of judgments.

“I can think of only two occasions in my entire life where I was made to feel self conscious about my weight, and neither was particularly mean-spirited.

“I received less criticism at 100 pounds [45kg] overweight in my entire life than a woman 10 pounds overweight does in, what, a month? A week? A day?”

Alasdair says he is amazed at the response his article has received. He’s been inundated with emails and tweets from people sharing their weight struggles.

“It’s great how they’ve found the piece really meaningful and it’s inspired them to get out there and do something about it.”

Cancer treatment centre to be fast tracked in Hervey Bay Qld Australia

Wednesday, July 1st, 2015

emergency ward hb hospital qld image

HERVEY Bay will soon be home to one of Australia’s most advanced cancer care facilities which is expected to fast track cancer treatment.

A cutting-edge plan for cancer care services in the Wide Bay will accelerate cancer detection and treatment, and offer patients a clear pathway for the course of their illness.

The Cancer Care Strategic Plan 2015-2018 will deliver a rapid response to any high suspicion of cancer,  make use of 26 new cancer care chairs in two new facilities and employ more specialists, surgeons and nurses.

Two new cancer care facilities costing a total of $35 million – one at Hervey Bay Hospital and one in Bundaberg – will bring cancer care operations under one roof and enable better communication between treatment partners, including video links to some of Australia’s top specialists.

WBHHS Chief Executive Adrian Pennington has hailed the WBHHS Cancer Care Strategic Plan 2015-208 as one of the most ambitious and forward-thinking in the nation.

“This is the most advanced cancer care strategic plan I’ve seen since coming to Australia,” Mr Pennington said.

Under the plan, in cases where there is a high suspicion of cancer, patients will have their first specialist appointment within 14 days under a “red referral” system.

The plan also aspires to deliver services where patients with a confirmed cancer diagnosis will have their first cancer treatment or other management within 30 days of the decision to treat.

Three urologists are expected to be appointed by the end of 2015, giving local access to further specialist services and offering earlier detection and treatment of prostate cancer and four medical oncologists have been recruited by WBHHS, with the last of these expected to have taken up the role by February 2016.

An interventional gastroenterologist is already in place in Maryborough, allowing rapid endoscopy, which increases the potential for early detection of cancers.

A prostate cancer support nurse has also been appointed, adding to the existing team of cancer care coordinators, including specialist breast cancer support.


Henry Sapiecha