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200 More MRI Scans Weekly to Tackle Waiting Times

Jul 10 2024 Share

An increase in the number of extra MRI scans performed each week by government hospitals in Malta will soon be implemented to significantly reduce waiting times. Currently, 375 additional scans are conducted weekly after normal operating hours. This number will be increased to 600 extra scans per week in the coming days, as announced in parliament by Health Minister Jo Etienne Abela.

These figures were shared by Minister Abela in response to a parliamentary question posed by PN MP Graziella Attard Previ. It was highlighted that funding for these extra MRI scans will be increased from €2.1 million to €3.8 million, enabling approximately 31,200 additional scans to be performed annually.

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It was stated by Abela that a drastic reduction in waiting times for these scans is expected within a year.

This announcement follows recent data, which revealed that over 15,750 individuals are currently on the waiting list for an MRI scan, double the number from six months ago. To further address this backlog, it was announced in January that an MRI scanner would be installed at St. Vincent De Paul Residence and another would be procured for Gozo General Hospital.

It was mentioned by Abela that the three MRI scanners at Mater Dei Hospital are operating nearly around the clock to meet the growing demand. The surge in demand for MRI imaging has been largely attributed to the increase in population.

Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) is recognized as a crucial non-invasive medical imaging technique that produces detailed images of the body’s organs and tissues. These scans are instrumental in diagnosing a wide range of conditions, including aneurysms, tumors, multiple sclerosis, spinal cord conditions, strokes, brain injuries, torn ligaments, muscle tears, arthritis, joint injuries, heart disease, blood clots, and various cancers. They are particularly valued for examining soft tissues such as the brain, spinal cord, muscles, ligaments, and internal organs.

The expansion of MRI scanning capacity aims to ensure that patients receive timely and accurate diagnoses, improving overall healthcare outcomes. The initiative by the government to increase the number of weekly MRI scans reflects a commitment to enhancing healthcare services and addressing the pressing needs of the population.

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Lionel Messi Held Baby Lamine Yamal

Jul 10 2024 Share

In 2007, a young Lionel Messi posed for photos with a baby in the dressing room of Camp Nou in Barcelona for a charity calendar photoshoot. Messi, then just 20 years old, was already making a name for himself and would go on to become arguably the greatest football player of all time. Little did anyone know that the baby in the photo would also make waves in international football less than 17 years later.

The baby, now known as Lamine Yamal, has become a rising star, taking the European Championships by storm. His goal against France in the semi-final on Tuesday is one that will be talked about for decades. At 16 years and 362 days old, the strike made him the youngest man to score in the tournament’s history.

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The long-forgotten photo of Messi and Yamal resurfaced after Yamal’s father posted it on Instagram last week with the caption: “The beginning of two legends.” The photos were taken by Joan Monfort, a freelance photographer for the Associated Press, who recalled the unusual circumstances of the shoot.

The shoot came about after UNICEF held a raffle in the town of Mataró, where Lamine’s family lived. “They signed up for the raffle to have their picture taken at Camp Nou with a Barça player. And they won the raffle,” Monfort told the Associated Press. The assignment was challenging, he said. “Messi is a pretty introverted guy, he’s shy,” Monfort explained. “He was coming out of the locker room and suddenly he finds himself in another locker room with a plastic tub full of water and a baby in it. It was complicated. He didn’t even know how to hold him at first.”

Despite the initial awkwardness, the photoshoot captured a moment that has now become iconic. Like Messi, Yamal went on to play for Barcelona, where he became the club’s youngest ever starter and goalscorer, as well as the youngest scorer in the Spanish league.

Mr. Monfort said it was only when the photo started going viral online last week that he realized the baby was Yamal. “It’s very exciting to be associated with something that has caused such a sensation,” he said. “To tell you the truth, it’s a very nice feeling.”

The rediscovered snapshots highlight the early connection between two football legends, marking the beginning of their incredible journeys in the world of football. As Messi continues to add to his legacy and Yamal carves out his own, this photo stands as a testament to the unpredictable and intertwined paths of greatness.

 

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England and Netherlands To Face Off Tonight

England and Netherlands To Face Off Tonight
Jul 10 2024 Share

England faces its toughest challenge yet in their quest to claim victory in the Euro 2024, as they prepare for an intense semi-final clash against the Netherlands tonight.

England have managed to toil through the tournament so far, edging nervously through the group stage with two draws and a win, Dramatic moments for the fans , such as Jude Bellingham’s spectacular 95th minute overhead kick to avoid elimination against Slovakia, have defined their performance in the competition. They again showed resilience by coming from behind to force penalties against Switzerland in the quarter-finals.

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Despite evident progress and a talented team, England supporters are apprehensive about another potentially nerve-wrecking match that could determine their spot in the final.

The Dutch squad, meantime, has also encountered difficulties; with a loss to Austria, they placed third in their group. In the round of 16, they defeated Romania with ease, but in the quarterfinals, they had to fight back against a resolute Turkey team.

The Dutch team, who weren’t thought to be strong competitors at beginning, are in their first European Championship semifinal in twenty years under Ronald Koeman’s direction. The comparatively easier side of the tournament draw has favoured both England and the Netherlands, paving the way for a much-anticipated matchup.

The Netherlands vs. England match is scheduled to begin at 8 p.m. BST tonight Wednesday, July 10, 2024.

Who do you think will win the match?

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Malta Among Worst Countries To Live As An Expat

Malta Among Worst Countries To Live As An Expat
Jul 10 2024 Share

An InterNations survey ranking the best and worst expat cities in 2023 has placed Malta in the 46th place – making it one of the ten worst cities for expats to move to.

Malta ranks just below New Zealand and just before Italy – with the full report highlighting car infrastructure (which ‘leaves a lot to be desired), and the ‘not always readily available’ public transportation.

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‘Nor is getting around on foot or by bicycle necessarily a safe and easy alternative’.

In terms of ‘Local Friendliness’, Malta placed in 33rd place, in 26th place for ‘ease of settling in’, in 22nd place for ‘finding friends’, and in 28th place for ‘culture and welcome.

Malta also placed in 41st place for both ‘salary and job security’ and ‘work culture & satisfaction.’

Malta also placed 39th for ‘career prospects’, and 40th for ‘working abroad.’

What do you make of this?

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