UCD offers certificate in jabbing people randomly with pins

Via Buzz, an Irish Times opinion piece about Irish third level educational institutions offering new courses in sorcery (or its modern-day equivalent):

The Graduate Certificate in Healthcare (Acupuncture) at UCD is aimed at those with a primary degree in health care, eg medicine or physiotherapy. This is a part-time course delivered over one year. The programme “provides education in traditional Chinese medicine (TCM) that will equip the healthcare professional with the necessary skills to assess and treat a broad range of acute and chronic musculoskeletal conditions”.

This reflects extremely poorly on the Graduate School of Life Sciences, which offers the course. Perhaps worse than that, it also implies that some significant number of graduates coming out of UCD’s undergraduate courses in medicine are unable to distinguish real medicine from quackery. Otherwise there would be no-one going into this new program.

Maybe if UCD had turned down the road of pseudo-science sooner I could have gone straight from my theoretical physics degree into a postgraduate diploma in intelligent falling.

World’s First Lab-Engineered Organ Transplant

Woman given lab-engineered organ transplant – The Irish Times:

A woman has become the first person in the world to be given an entirely laboratory engineered organ in a landmark operation.

Claudia Castillo’s stem cells were used to create an artificial airway which replaced the bronchus to her left lung, which had collapsed after she suffered a serious tuberculosis infection.

Two things:

First, I don’t want anyone saying, “I’d give her a lab-engineered organ, if you know what I’m talking about!

Second, I think this technique is going to re-shape how we perform not only transplant operations but also cosmetic surgery, which is about adding things as much as it is about taking things away.