News Item: Taking Medicine Safely

Basic Competence :
Comprehend the `News Item` text and its generic stuctures.
Indicator :
1. Identify the general idea and the main ideas.
2. Answer the questions concerning the specific information, detail information and discourse marker.
3. Identify the generic stuctures of the `News Item` text.
Hello everybody! Welcome to join the English program. Well, now you are going to read a `News Item` text and the title is `Taking Medicine Safely`. The reading skills you will learn including finding main ideas, looking for specific information and detailed information, and recorgnizing the generic structure of the text. By the end of this program, you must be able to understand them all. Hopefully you can identify the features of the `News Item` text.

Before you read a news item text, the steps you must study are the following general features of the text below.
  • The Purpose of the text
    The news item text informs readers of daily newspapers about events of the day which are regraded as newsworthy or important. Newspapers need to make the news are readable as possible in order to attract as many readers as possible. More readers means more money from advertisers and wider circulation of the newspapers. News stories especially the one published in the afternoon newspapaers-often make the events of the day dramatic or as sensational as they can order to make more people buy them.
  • Schematic structure or generic stucture of the text :
    • News worthy events
    • Background events
    • Sources
  • Language features
    • Short, telegraphic information about story summarized in one sentence headline, e.g.: Medicine for children.
    • Use of material or action processes to retell story, e.g.: `are being invited`, `is commissioning`, `set up`, etc.
    • Use of projecting verbal processes in `source` stage, e.g.: `Recent studies suggested ...", `Professor Tom Walley says ...`, `Professor Sally Davies says ..." etc.
    • Focus on circumstantial meanings (especially in Newsworthy events` stage), e.g.: `search into medicine for children ...`, `into areas as part of ...`, `in the Prescribing Research Group at ...` etc.
    • Often dramatic use of participant structure-especially in the thematic position, e.g.: `Researchers are being invited ...`, `The program is commissioning ...`. `The program set up ...`, `the Department of Health`s pediatric medicines strategy which aims ...` etc.
The Model `News Item` text
B. Modeling of a News Item Text
Read the text below then answer questions below!

(In research spotlight, 25 August 2005)
News Worthy Events
Researches are being invited to submit ideas for research into medicines or children as part of new initiative by the Health Technology Assessment (HTA) programme. The programme is commissioning a portfolio of research projects into the area as part of its work with the newly created Medicines for Children Research Network (MCRN), set up to target the development of safe and effective medicines for the treatment of youngsters aged newborn to 18.
Back ground Events
"Recent studies suggest that in the UK more than half of medicines prescribed for babies in neonatal intensive care are unlicensed or off-label, and up to quarter of all medicines prescribed in pediatric inpatient care fall into this category, "says Professor Tom Walley, Director of the HTA programme and Professor of Clinical Pharmacology in the Prescribing Research Group at the Department of Pharmacology and Therapeutics, University of Liverpool. "The MCRN has been set up to investigate safe and appropriate medicines for children, and the HTA programme is delighted to be supporting the new network to help address the largely neglected area."
The HTA programme intends to commission a variety of research projects (including primary, secondary and methological designs) to help support the new network, with investigators from all disciplines invited to bid for research work in the area.
"This is the lastest step in the Department of Health`s pediatric medicines strategy which aims to improves children`s health through the development of children`s medicines," says Professor Sally Davies, Head of Research & Development at the Department of Health. " Currently, most medicines are designed and tested in adults, so healthcare professionals must use their skill and judgment when prescribing medicines for children, We want to see safer and more effective treatments designed specifically for children. Research commissioned and funded through the Health Technology Assessment programme, and coordinated through the Medicines for Children Research Network, is vital in achieving this." (
Reading Comprehension
Reading for gist (the main idea) and the information :
  • The general idea is the topic of the text which is discussed generally for the whole paragraph.
  • The topic sentence of a paragraph contains the main idea.
    The main idea can be the first sentences of a paragraph or in the last sentence of a paragraph, or somewhere in the middle of paragraph or stated implicitly.
  • The specific information is the information which is stated explicitly in the text.
  • The detailed information is the information which is given in detail to support the main idea in the text.

Read the following text carefully then answer the questions!
United States (December 8, 2004), the pharmacist of National Instute of Medical Services said that patients should get prescriptions refilled early enough so they won`t run out of medicines. Running out could cause problems with his medicine schedules. The pharmacist also reminded them checking expiration dates and discard any medicines that out-of-date.
Some medication must be stored in the proper place. Keeping a check list of all prescription and over-the-counter medications are very important. For each medicine, the doctor told the patients to mark the amount they take, the time of day they take the medicine, and the medicine should be taken with food.
Another important thing is that patients must review their medicine record to the doctor whenever their doctor prescribes new medicines. Their doctor may have new information that might be important than them. The Doctor also said that their patients should have their health care provider write down advice and instruction for taking the medicine.
Finally, the doctor insisted that the pharmacist be a good source of information about patients` medications. In addition, the pharmacist keeps records of all the prescriptions the patients get filled at the drug store. The pharmacist always helps them select non-prescription medications.

Read the text carefully then answer the questions. Type the cross on the letter A, B, C, D, or E as your correct answer!

Dr. Tim Bowker, 50, is consultant cardiologist at St. Mary`s Hostipal in Paddington, London, and a lecturer in cardiovascular medicine at Imperial Colledge, London.
He is not overweight and he is not on a diet but he cycles or walks most places, which he thinks goes a long way towards keeping him fit. He would always take the stairs rather that a lift. He certainly doesn`t spend hours vegetating in front of a television.
He is not a big eater. He tends to go out at lunch time and buy two sandwiches and fruit, one for them and one for his evening meal letter. He lives alone but he`s got into the habit of convenient foods. He`s more likely to go for bread and cheese and apples.
He thinks a lot of people underestimate the amount of food they eat. He gets patients who waddle in and say: "I just don`t know where the weight is coming from, doctor. I don`t eat a lot". Well, maybe they don`t but it`s coming from somewhere.
Since working for the BHF, he`s stopped adding salt to anything. It pushed up his blood pressure and leads to hardening of the arteries. He probably doesn`t drink quite enough alcohol. The research showed that drinking in moderation has a beneficial effect on his heart, but he probably only has one or two units a week.
As he gets into his 50s, he`ll have his blood preassure and cholesterol checked from time to time. He`ll always keep in mind the factors that most effect how likely you to die of heart disease-apart from age and gender. He said that there are smoking, diabetes, high blood pressure and cholesterol levels. At the moment his reading on all these factors make him low risk. He intended to keep things that way.