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Archive for September, 2008

Drugs classification should be scrapped, experts say

A leading think tank has called for the labour Government’s system of drugs classification to be scrapped. The UK Drugs Policy Commission says classifying illegal drugs on a “danger scale” of classes A, B or C needs to be overhauled because they do not affect drug use. The news comes ahead of a meeting this […]

Private companies get access to millions of NHS medical records

The confidential medical records of millions of NHS patients could be handed over to private companies under controversial plans being drawn up by labour ministers. Patients’ postcodes, medical conditions and treatments – and in some circumstances, their names – could be passed on to third parties without their consent. The labour Government is considering giving […]

NHS appoints new IT supremos

The health department has finally appointed replacements for Richard Granger, the National Health Service’s IT supremo, some six months after his departure as head of Connecting for Health, the white elephant health service programme that aims to create an electronic patient record system. Christine Connolly, previously chief information officer at Cadbury Schweppes and head of […]

Midwives deal with three births at once, says expert

Midwives are “overworked and overstretched”, sometimes caring for three women in labour at the same time, according an expert. Since 2001 there has been a 16 per cent rise in birthrates yet there are vacancies for midwives in every part of the country, according to the Royal College of Midwives. The labour Government has pledged […]

Harmful mistakes of sex education in school

Judged by its results – sex education has been an utter failure. The increase in sex education here in recent years has coincided with an explosion of unwanted pregnancies and sexually transmitted disease (STD) far worse than anywhere else in Europe. Since the labour government’s teenage pregnancy strategy was introduced in 1999, the number of […]

Lady Archer backs patients in row over top-up drugs

Lady Archer has backed demands for patients to be allowed to pay for additional medicines without losing their NHS care by releasing a survey showing that more than 80% of patients at the trust she chairs back the change. The survey, of more than 800 patients, shows that 82% of NHS patients back the right […]

Labour U Turn on medical data- NPfIT medical records a step closer

After another labour U turn the national electronic record of patients’ health (NPfIT) looks finally on the cards – five years late – after the NHS IT programme on Thursday changed the way patients will give their consent to the system. Providing a brief, summary electronic patient record has been a key driver for the […]

Cancer patient with months to live wins court order for last-chance drug on NHS

A cancer patient has won a legal battle against the NHS to be given a drug that doctors say could prolong his life by up to three years. Colin Ross, 55, of Horsham, West Sussex, has multiple myeloma, a cancer of the blood cells, and was not expected to survive to see Christmas unless he […]

The King’s Fund- labour’s NHS top up payments strategy is untenable

The King’s Fund believes the current policy and practice on top-ups, which prohibits people from privately purchasing drugs not available on the health service while continuing a course of NHS care, is untenable. There are areas of the NHS where there is inconsistency over patient charging, such as optical care and dental care, and current […]

Average NHS dentist earns six-figure salary

The average Health Service dentist received a 13 per cent pay rise last year, official figures shows this week. That means they now earn more than £100,000 on average without any increase in their NHS workload. Last night, patients groups blamed the labour Government for “botching” a contract that allows dentists to make more money […]