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Evening News Hit with Loughlin Patrick for 14 February 2023

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Loughlin Patrick brings you the latest from Minds in Tune.

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Medication Access

Treatment for people with narcolepsy could become more accessible after a U.S. court settlement came into force this year.

The agreement between Jazz Pharmaceuticals and competing firm Hikma has enabled a generic version of popular medication Xyrem to be marketed for the first time.

Sleep Health Foundation CEO Moira Junge has welcomed the news.

“I mean usually an approved generic drug means the cost drops,” Junge told SYN News, “so this is obviously very promising for the Australian public.”

Xyrem isn’t subsidised by the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme and must be imported by patients at a cost of $1,500 per month.

Housing Pledge

State Housing Minister Colin Brooks has announced a $50 million investment in housing projects to tackle youth homelessness in Victoria.

Melbourne and regional communities including Wangaratta will see 130 homes built as part of the investment.

The homes will support young people leaving out of home care through integration with education and employment services.

Out of home care advocate Ruby Sait welcomes the news.

“I’m a young person from Wangaratta who’s experienced out of home care and youth homelessness,” Sait told SYN News.

“I began advocating for young people in similar situations because everyone should have a safe place to live, and I’m so excited to hear the Victorian government is investing to make sure that’s possible.”

People aged 15 to 24 make up over 16 per cent of Victoria’s homeless population.

Health Research

A new mental health body chaired by former Federal Health Minister Greg Hunt has met for the first time yesterday.

The Turner Institute for Brain and Mental Health Advisory Council informs major research and community outreach priorities.

Director Professor Kim Cornish says the council will enable the institute to better serve young people.

“Being able to, for example, develop clinics and places that adolescents and youth can go about ADHD symptoms,” Cornish told SYN News.

“So there’s plenty of programs at the Turner Institute which is very much about understanding how we can really help resources in our youth and in adults under 20 years of age.”

The institute is currently running a ‘Living Lab’ study tracking the mental health of thousands of people in Melbourne’s south east.

Reviving Music

The Federal Government has announced a National Cultural Policy to revive Australia’s arts industry following Covid impacts.

The landmark policy includes $1 million in funding for music industry crisis relief, mental health and first nations support programs.

Busker Samantha Lloyd says the investment is a welcome change after a lack of support during the worst of the pandemic.

“We have a bit of a problem at the moment,” Lloyd told SYN News, “because a lot of musicians offered their time for free to help out with charity and services.”

“I feel like that is still expected and obviously we have bills to pay as well.”

The plan will be implemented over the course of five years.

Who’s Charting

The Kid Laroi’s ‘Love Again has risen to number one in ARIA’s Local Music Chart after debuting at number two last week. The Indigenous artist’s song portrays a very dynamic relationship.

Flume and Dean Lewis follow in the second and third spots.

For more updates, follow @synmedia on the socials, or visit syn.org.au.

Loughlin Patrick

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