NHS will miss targets on foreign patient cost payments

The government is expected to fall well short of its target of recovering £500m a year from overseas visitors treated in NHS hospitals in England. The Department of Health has “refined” to £346m its target for 2017-18, says the National Audit Office. Some £289m was paid in 2015-16; £73m in

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The NHS- how big should the National Health Service be?

The National Health Service was founded in 1948 with 144,000  health professionals. In less than seven decades that figure has risen tenfold to over 1.4 million staff across the UK. But with all the political parties promising more health workers in the coming years -just how many doctors, nurses, porters,

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Hospital charges to rise for non EU patients

Visitors from outside the EU who receive treatment in NHS hospitals in England are now charged 150% of the cost. The charges however only apply to non EU citizens settling in the UK for longer than six months. The new rules from the Department of Health came into force on

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Cancer patients not referred to specialists by GPs

Thousands of people who go on to be diagnosed with cancer were not referred to a specialists by their GP. NHS England data from around 4,000 GP practices suggests symptoms were picked up in other ways, for example by accident and emergency departments. The NHS said not all cancer patients

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Food poverty is now a health emergency

Food poverty in the UK has now become such a big problem that it should be seen as a public health emergency according to a group of health experts. In a letter to the British Medical Journal, six leading public health figures warned poor nutrition could lead to a host

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NHS 111 health direct number- 1 in 8 calls unanswered

One in eight calls to the NHS’s new non emergency health direct phone number are going unanswered, amid reports people are having to wait over half an hour.Ministers want 111 to be the only number people need to call in England, “if you urgently need medical help or advice but

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Exercise should be standard part of cancer care

All patients getting cancer treatment should be told to do two and a half hours of physical exercise every week, says a report by Macmillan Cancer Support. Being advised to rest and take it easy after treatment is an outdated view the charity says. Research shows that exercise can reduce

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