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Big solutions from Bill Gates, and electric pants

Hotch Potch | 10:32 UK time, Tuesday, 16 October 2012

Ouch's Hotch Potch mosaic

Let's call today Solutions Tuesday, shall we?

Wouldn't it be great to have Bill Gates' job? The philanthropist, chairman and co-founder of software giant Microsoft, has spent the last few years trying to solve huge world problems from education to energy and health.

In 2011 Afghanistan had a "large outbreak" of polio and Gates has set his mind to eliminating the disease - a significant challenge in an area of conflict.

Last week on his official blog he posted A Great Meeting on Polio with Afghani Officials where he said he feels they are "on the right track" to curing polio in the country, which he believes important in fighting the disease worldwide.

Oh to be a multi multi billionaire able to solve big problems at a stroke (or three) and for everyone to want to listen to you.

Another big disability related problem that could have a solution is reported on the BBC Health pages this morning and it all surrounds the wearing of electric pants. It sounds like something straight out of Saturday Night Fever but can you guess what this 'special' underwear might help with? Clue: it's not incontinence, it's not a timely winter warmer for the nether-regions and it's not an aid to flying.

It's a possible solution to the age-old issue of pressure sores. The painfulness and significance to an individual is perhaps not widely appreciated. And once you've got one, it's a devil to get rid of and could leave you flat on your front for months in bad cases. Many have speculated actor Christopher Reeve died of complications stemming from a pressure sore he had at the time.

Paraplegics, I'm told, routinely check their hips and bottom in a mirror in the mornings and at night. So, if your disabled pal or colleague tells you they've got a pink patch on their behind, it's a big deal.

Prevention, then, is better than a cure and these amazing grundies - as I believe some people call them - jolt you with electricity to make your muscles contract and mimic a movement, or fidget, which people with feeling in that area would naturally do without thinking, or what you might do whilst asleep. The pants are being trialled presently.

Read: the stages of a pressure sore

Would you wear electric pants? What disability issue would you solve if you were a jet-setting philanthropist? Tell us below or on our social media.



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