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Queen addresses ‘trying period’ as she opens Holyrood without Philip in historic first

Queen addresses 'trying period' as she opens Holyrood without Philip in historic first

The Queen headed to Holyrood this morning to take part in the opening of the Scottish Parliament. This ceremony was particularly important as it focused on celebrating local heroes who have walked the extra mile to help their community during the COVID-19 pandemic.  

But it was also poignant for the Queen, as today marks her first opening of Holyrood without Prince Philip at her side.

Speaking ahead of Her Majesty’s speech, Sky News’ Rhiannon Mills noted: “The Queen has attended every opening ceremony since 1999.

“This is the sixth session she will play a part in today.

“And I think for the 95-year-old monarch it will be wonderful to see that after 18 months where Covid has disrupted so much of the official work that she carries out today again we will see some of the pomp and ceremony you would expect for a similar event. 

“She will be accompanied today by Prince Charles and Camilla, known here in Scotland as the Duke and Duchess of Rothesay.

“On previous occasions, of course, she was joined by the Duke of Edinburgh, so I suspect there will be a poignancy to the fact that her husband, who passed away in April, is not at her side today.” 

Indeed, the monarch mentioned her beloved husband Prince Philip, who died on April 9 at Windsor Castle, during her speech. 

The Queen addressed MSPs, First Minister Nicola Sturgeon and Presiding Officer Alison Johnstone with a speech focused on the response to the pandemic, unity within Holyrood’s debate chamber and her love for Scotland.  

READ MORE: Royal wedding: Ceremony ‘like historical reenactment’

While speaking about her affection for the nation, she briefly recalled spending her summers at Balmoral with the late Duke. 

She said: “I have spoken before of my deep and abiding affection for this wonderful country and of the many happy memories Prince Philip and I always had of our time here.” 

For more than 70 years, the Queen and Prince Philip have spent several months during their summers together at Balmoral Castle. 

At Balmoral they would host guests and attend local events, including the Braemar Gathering.


And they spent a more relaxed time together, free of most of the royal protocol in use at Windsor Castle or Buckingham Palace.

In Scotland, the Duke of Edinburgh was known to handle the barbeque and while the Queen would do the washing up.

In the speech, Her Majesty also acknowledged how the coronavirus pandemic has been “trying” for the country.

After expressing her delight at being in Edinburgh, she congratulated the Scottish Government “for being able to mark this new session of Parliament in a safe and welcoming manner during what has been a very trying period”.

In her speech, the monarch also called the Scottish Parliament for unity, urging MSPs to work together for Scotland. 

She said: “Members of the Scottish Parliament, as we all step out from adverse and uncertain times, occasions such as this today provide an opportunity for hope and optimism.

“Marking this new session does indeed bring a sense of beginning and renewal.

“The Scottish Parliament has been at the heart of Scotland’s response to the pandemic, with people across this country looking for leadership and stewardship. 

“And I hope you will remain at the forefront as we move towards a phase of recovery.

“While some of you will have differences of opinion, I trust you will continue to work together.” 

She then encouraged MSPs to “draw inspiration from the founding principles of wisdom, justice, compassion and integrity”. 

Her Majesty added: “These words are a reminder of your responsibility to the people of Scotland and in the years ahead I hope you can reaffirm their importance to everything you do as a member of this parliament.” 

Read more here Daily Express :: Royal Feed

Don’t buy a caravan or campervan without taking crucial advice first – ‘test it’

Don't buy a caravan or campervan without taking crucial advice first - 'test it'

CARAVAN and campervan holidays have always been popular, but perhaps even more so as foreign holidays have been more difficult during the pandemic. Travel experts shared with Express.co.uk important tips to follow when buying a caravan or campervan.Don't buy a caravan or campervan without taking crucial advice first - 'test it'

Read more here Daily Express :: Travel News Feed

‘Wild camping is illegal’: Camper on how to do it without breaking the law – ‘really nice’

'Wild camping is illegal': Camper on how to do it without breaking the law - 'really nice'

CAMPING is a popular option for a UK holiday, and wild camping is gathering support too. However, it’s illegal to wild camp in most places in England and Wales. Express.co.uk spoke to Grace Kelly of Grace’s Adventures about the legal way to wild camp.'Wild camping is illegal': Camper on how to do it without breaking the law - 'really nice'

Read more here Daily Express :: Travel News Feed

One in three people globally imprisoned without trial, while overcrowding puts prisoners at risk of contracting COVID-19, says UNODC’s first global research on imprisonment

One in three people globally imprisoned without trial, while overcrowding puts prisoners at risk of contracting COVID-19, says UNODC’s first global research on imprisonment© Haidy Darwish

Vienna (Austria), 16 July 2021 – One in every three prisoners worldwide are held without a trial, which means that they have not been found guilty by any court of justice, according to the first global research data on prisons published by the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime.

The research brief, released ahead of Nelson Mandela International Day on 18 July, examines the long-term trends of imprisonment, stating that over the past two decades, between 2000 and 2019, the number of prisoners worldwide has increased by more than 25 per cent, with a global population growth of 21 per cent in the same period, with 11.7 million people incarcerated at the end of 2019. This is a population comparable in size to entire nations such as Bolivia, Burundi, Belgium, or Tunisia. 

At the end of 2019 — the latest year data is available — there were around 152 prisoners for every 100,000 population. While Northern America, Sub-Saharan Africa and Eastern Europe have experienced a long-term decrease in imprisonment rates of up to 27 per cent, other regions and countries, such as Latin America and Australia and New Zealand, have seen growth over the last two decades of up to 68 per cent.

At 93 per cent, most of the persons detained in prison globally are men. Over the past two decades, however, the number of women in prisons has increased at a faster pace, with an increase of 33 per cent versus 25 per cent for men. 

As guardian of the UN Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners – the so-called Nelson Mandela Rules — UNODC also looked at data on overcrowding in prisons. While the rates vary substantially across regions, in roughly half of all countries with available data, prison systems are operating at more than 100 per cent of their intended capacity.

The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically shifted attention towards the issue of prison overcrowding. According to a global analysis of Government and open sources, as of May 2021, nearly 550,000 prisoners in 122 countries have become infected with COVID-19, with close to 4,000 fatalities in prisons in 47 countries. 

In response to the pandemic, some prisons limited recreation, work opportunities, and visitation rights, all essential components of rehabilitation programmes. With prevention measures often difficult to implement in prisons, especially when they are overcrowded, some countries meanwhile opted to release, at least temporarily, large numbers of people in custody, particularly remand prisoners and those convicted of non-violent offences.

Since March 2020, at least 700,000 persons around the globe – or roughly 6 per cent of the estimated global prison population – have been authorized or considered eligible for release through emergency release mechanisms adopted by 119 Member States. 

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This post originally posted here The European Times News

NASCAR at New Hampshire: Starting order, pole for Sunday’s race without qualifying

NASCAR at New Hampshire: Starting order, pole for Sunday's race without qualifying

The starting lineup for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway was set by applying the statistical formula NASCAR is using for the majority of the series’ races in 2021.

Drivers’ starting positions for the Foxwoods Resort Casino 301 (3 p.m. ET; NBCSN, TSN, PRN, SiriusXM NASCAR Radio) were based on four factors:

  • Driver’s finishing position from the previous race (25 percent)
  • Car owner’s finishing position from the previous race (25 percent)
  • Team owner points ranking (35 percent)
  • Fastest lap from the previous race (15 percent)

NASCAR is conducting qualifying and practice for just eight Cup Series races in the 2021 season. The remaining sessions will be held at the Indianapolis Motor Speedway road course in August and at Phoenix for the season-ending Championship 4 race in November.

Below is the starting lineup, which was set without qualifying, for Sunday’s NASCAR Cup Series race on New Hampshire Motor Speedway’s 1.058-mile oval.

MORE: Watch Sunday’s NASCAR race live with fuboTV (free 7-day trial)

Who won the pole for the NASCAR race at New Hampshire?

Kyle Busch, who has won three times at New Hampshire in the Cup Series, will be on the pole for Sunday’s race. This is his first pole win of the season. He finished second to his brother, Kurt Busch, last weekend at Atlanta and his Joe Gibbs Racing No. 18 Toyota team is third in the point standings after 21 races.

To his outside on the front row will be JGR teammate Martin Truex Jr., whose No. 19 team is seventh in the standings. Truex came home third at Atlanta. 

The second row will feature the Chevrolets of defending series champion Chase Elliott (third) and Kurt Busch (fourth).

Series points leader Denny Hamlin will start sixth. The driver of the JGR No. 11 car is still seeking his first win of the year. 

NASCAR starting lineup at New Hampshire

NASCAR used a mathematical formula to set the starting lineup for Sunday’s race at New Hampshire Motor Speedway, the Foxwoods Casino Resort 301. Thirty-seven cars were entered for the race.

Start pos. Driver Car No. Team
1 Kyle Busch 18 Joe Gibbs Racing
2 Martin Truex Jr. 19 Joe Gibbs Racing
3 Chase Elliott 9 Hendrick Motorsports
4 Kurt Busch 1 Chip Ganassi Racing
5 Alex Bowman 48 Hendrick Motorsports
6 Denny Hamlin 11 Joe Gibbs Racing
7 Ryan Blaney 12 Team Penske
8 Tyler Reddick 8 Richard Childress Racing
9 Christopher Bell 20 Joe Gibbs Racing
10 Kyle Larson 5 Hendrick Motorsports
11 Brad Keselowski 2 Team Penske
12 Kevin Harvick 4 Stewart-Haas Racing
13 Austin Dillon 3 Richard Childress Racing
14 Matt DiBenedetto 21 Wood Brothers Racing
15 Joey Logano 22 Team Penske
16 William Byron 24 Hendrick Motorsports
17 Chris Buescher 17 Roush Fenway Racing
18 Bubba Wallace 23 23XI Racing
19 Chase Briscoe 14 Stewart-Haas Racing
20 Ross Chastain 42 Chip Ganassi Racing
21 Cole Custer 41 Stewart-Haas Racing
22 Aric Almirola 10 Stewart-Haas Racing
23 Michael McDowell 34 Front Row Motorsports
24 Erik Jones 43 Richard Petty Motorsports
25 Ryan Preece 37 JTG Daugherty Racing
26 Corey LaJoie 7 Spire Motorsports
27 Anthony Alfredo 38 Front Row Motorsports
28 Ryan Newman 6 Roush Fenway Racing
29 Ricky Stenhouse Jr. 47 JTG Daugherty Racing
30 Justin Haley 77 Spire Motorsports
31 Daniel Suarez 99 Trackhouse Racing Team
32 BJ McLeod 78 Live Fast Motorsports
33 Garrett Smithley 53 Rick Ware Racing
34 Cody Ware 51 Petty Ware Racing
35 Josh Bilicki 52 Rick Ware Racing
36 Quin Houff 00 StarCom Racing
37 James Davison 15 Rick Ware Racing

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This post originally posted here usnews

Reduced-Dose CT Detects Cancer Without Missing Nodules

Reduced-dose computed tomography (CT) can safely be used to detect lung metastasis in pediatric patients with various cancers without sacrificing diagnostic accuracy, a study published in the American Journal of Roentgenology concludes.

The study, in which 92% of lung nodules in pediatric patients were detected with reduced-dose CT (0.3 mSv mean effective dose), involved 78 children (44 males) with a mean age of 15 who had diagnoses such as Ewing sarcoma and osteosarcoma. Patients first underwent standard chest CT (1.8 mSv) followed by a chest CT with an 83% dose decrease. A total of 45 patients (58%) had 162 total lung nodules with a mean size of 3.4 mm.

Reduced-Dose CT Detects Cancer Without Missing Nodules

Three radiologists blind-reviewed the CT examinations, and one radiologist conducted a subsequent review to match lung nodules between standard- and reduced-dose CT examinations. The sensitivity of reduced-dose CT for nodules ranged from 63%-77%, and the specificity ranged from 80%-90% across the three radiologists.

The results point to the potential for increasing the use of reduced-dose CT, according to Andrew Trout, MD, the study’s senior author and an associate professor of radiology and pediatrics at Cincinnati Children’s Hospital, Cincinnati, Ohio.

“In pediatric radiology, we try to reduce dose as it relates to radiation, but we are also trying to balance optimizing the dose with optimizing image quality,” explained Trout. “We don’t want to reduce the dose so low that the exam is not interpretable.”

Trout noted that in clinical practice patients and even clinicians will sometimes choose a chest x-ray over a chest CT because of concerns of exposure to radiation. “There is some hesitancy in some areas to use CT,” he said. “This [reduced dose CT] gives us another tool where we can say that this is about the [same] dose as just a couple of chest x-rays. Patients, parents, and even providers have an idea in their mind that CT is bad because it is a high-dose examination. They sometimes choose an x-ray over a CT scan because of concerns of the radiation dose associated with standard CT.”

Trout explained he and co-investigators chose lung nodules because they are very challenging to identify. “They are very small in size (1 to 2 mm),” said Trout. “If we can prove it in this case, that opens the door to wider use of it in cases where it is appropriate.”

One population that would benefit from reduced-dose CT is children with genetic disorders that make them particularly susceptible to radiation exposure. Another population of patients suitable for reduced-dose CT examinations would be follow-up cases.

“There are some situations where the follow-up examinations have switched over to chest x-ray,” said Trout. “I know that as a radiologist, I can’t detect lung nodules from a chest x-ray as well as I can from a CT scan.”

Trout noted the study is limited by its sample size, the fact that it is a single-center investigation, and that it did not completely reflect “real-world” practice where sedation may have to be used in pediatric patients. He underlined that the study findings do not support the notion that reduced-dose CT can be employed to detect soft tissues in the center of the chest.

“While it may work for lung nodules, we don’t know if it will work for soft tissue lesions in the center of the chest,” said Trout. “The dose reduction will create more difficulties for reading soft tissues in the center of the chest such as the heart. The loss of image quality will be greater.”

Daria Manos, MD, a professor of diagnostic radiology at Dalhousie University in Halifax, Canada, and president of the Canadian Society of Thoracic Radiology, described the study as very carefully designed and one that will be practice-changing.

“They have shown that when the purpose of a CT is to look for lung nodules, we can safely reduce radiation dose,” said Manos, who was not involved in the study. “This is a beautiful example of how we should be further reducing our radiation dose, particularly in children. All of us should be looking at our CT protocols and trying to modify our techniques to reduce the radiation dose as much as we can.”

The use of ultra low-dose CT will decrease cumulative exposure to radiation over the long-term, said Manos. “It’s important to remember that these pediatric oncology patients will often have many CT scans over their lifetime,” she said. “Every reduction in radiation is impactful.”

Manos and Trout have disclosed no relevant financial relationships.

AJR Am J Roentgenol. Published online July 7, 2021. Abstract

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This post originally posted here Medscape Medical News