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Archive for August, 2010

Top doctor Sir Ian Gilmore calls for drugs law review

Decriminalising drug use could drastically reduce crime and improve health, the outgoing president of the Royal College of Physicians has said. Sir Ian Gilmore said the laws on misuse of drugs should be reviewed and that their supply should be regulated. He had formed his view after seeing the problems caused by dirty needles and […]

NHS fails to curb lethal painkiller errors

Health workers made more than 1,300 mistakes involving the use of strong painkilling drugs in less than a year, resulting in at least three deaths and severe harm to two other patients. Nearly one in five dosage errors involving morphine, diamorphine and similar opiate drugs resulted in some harm to NHS patients. Figures released under […]

NHS £86m websites spend confusing

The NHS spends up to £86m a year on thousands of websites that are difficult to find, confusing for patients and which do not meet their needs, according to research commissioned for a Department of Health report. Research for the NHS Digital Communications Review, conducted by communications agency Precedent and leaked to the Health Service […]

Top GP condemns Britons for recklessly neglecting their health

Britain’s top GP has launched a scathing attack on widespread reckless public behaviour towards food, alcohol and cigarettes, which he claims is causing growing levels of disease and early death. In a dramatic intervention in the public health debate, Professor Steve Field criticises parents, mothers-to-be, the very overweight, smokers and drinkers for damaging their own […]

More than 300 NHS executives have a larger salary than the prime minister

An investigation found that 320 hospital, ambulance and health authority chiefs are paid more than David Cameron’s annual salary of £142,500. The report comes as the health service faces cuts to frontline services to reduce the deficit. Of those 58 are paid more than £200,000 a year. Financial experts described the salaries as “unsustainable”. The […]

Ministers accused of privatising NHS nursing agency

Ministers are considering ‘privatising’ an NHS agency that provides 50,000 nurses and other workers to the health service. An advert has been placed for private sector investment in NHS Professionals, a company owned by the Department of Health, which provides bank staff to fill shifts in the health service. Unions criticised the plan saying it […]

Pregnant women feel abandoned by NHS

The declining role of GPs in maternity care is leading to some pregnant women feeling “abandoned” by the system, a leading think-tank has claimed. Often expectant mothers do not know who to turn to if they suffer health problems during pregnancy, according to The King’s Fund. Although family doctors frequently know a woman’s medical history […]

Statins should be given out with hamburgers and fast food to reduce heart disease

McDonald’s, Burger King and other fast food outlets should offer diners free drugs to compensate for the risk of heart disease, cardiologists have proposed. If burger joints offered cholesterol-lowering statins, customers would offset the unhealthy effects of a cheeseburger and milkshake, according to researchers at Imperial College London. The pills could be placed beside the […]

Thousands of patients still forced to stay in mixed sex wards breaking labour’s promise

Tens of thousands of hospital patients were forced to be in mixed sex wards last year despite Labour promises that men and women would be separated, new figures suggest. The announcement came as the new coalition government revealed that men and women will no longer have to share facilities in English hospitals. More than eight […]

NHS facing £65bn mortgage bill for PFI

The NHS in England faces a total bill of £65bn for new hospitals built under the private finance initiative (PFI)- six times more than the buildings cost. Figures obtained by the BBC show that some NHS trusts are spending more than 10 percent of their turnover on the annual ”mortgage” repayments. Under PFI, private companies […]