BMJ 1997; 315 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.315.7117.1244 (Published 08 November 1997) Cite this as: BMJ 1997;315:1244

Half the children in institutions for blind people in Africa are there because they have never had basic tests of refraction, says an editorial in the Medical Journal of Australia (1997;167:351-2). Some are reading braille by seeing the dots up close rather than feeling them. Worldwide, says the article, the most common treatment needed for poor vision is refraction and the provision of spectacles.

Minerva quite likes steak tartare, so she read with interest a report of salmonella food poisoning in Wisconsin that was traced to eating raw minced beef. The authors seemed horrified at the idea of eating raw meat (Epidemiology and Infection 1997;119:127-34) and blamed the victims for following customs that had been brought over as a tradition from Europe. The real blame seemed to lie with the butcher.

Not only are the professional classes less likely than manual workers to have heart attacks, but they also recover better. This is the conclusion of a study of 2145 men aged 29–69 admitted to hospital with acute myocardial infarction (Annals of Internal Medicine 1997;127:518-25). Follow up one year later showed that 72% of the professionals but only 57% …

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