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Health Visitor feature

Evening Standard feature about the work of health visitors, and how plans to recruit thousands more will have major impact on lives of families with young children. Dr Peter Carter is quoted saying: “It is well known that health visitors make a significant impact on the health of young children and families”. Evening Standard (P57).

New map shows undiagnosed dementia cases across the UK

Almost 600,000 people will have undiagnosed dementia in 2021, according to a new report. Figures from the Alzheimer's Society reveal just over 300,000 people are currently undiagnosed but this is predicted to almost double over the next decade.

BMA raises concerns about GP bonus system

The BMA has raised concerns that GPs will deny patients tests or make them wait until the next financial year for operations so they can keep their pay up by claiming they are not wasting money. Dr Laurence Buckman, Chairman of the BMA said such a scheme would be “disgracefully unethical” because it could see doctors lining their pockets while patients lose out.

NHS record on survival rates

A report from the House of Commons Public Accounts Committee has found that cancer care in the NHS still falls short of comparable European countries despite 10 years of investment and government initiatives. The report says too many people are dying of cancer in England within a year of diagnosis, usually because they do not seek help when they have symptoms or their GP does not recognise the disease.


Taking The Medicine

Editorial in The Times on the current health reforms and the possible closure of the Royal Brompton Hospital's paediatric services. The Times (p2) (subscription only)


Health Lottery

Media tycoon Richard Desmond yesterday launched the Health Lottery, a nationwide scheme that he claimed would generate £50m a year for charitable projects outside the funding of the National Health Service. The health lottery draw will take place live on Channel 5 and the games will be heavily promoted across his print titles, including Daily Express and the Daily Star.

Men ‘don’t know’ about prostate test

The Prostate Cancer Charity has warned that two-thirds of men at a raised risk of the disease do not know about a blood test described as the "first line of defence" against it. Under NHS guidelines, men over 50 have the right to ask for the prostate specific antigen (PSA) test, which can indicate prostate cancer, but a survey by the charity has found that a tenth of GPs "do not support this right", while a fifth "never talk about the PSA test with at-risk groups".

At least half of all men are infected with HPV

A new study published in the Lancet indicates that at least half of all men are infected with human papillomavirus (HPV), the sexually transmitted virus that can cause cancer in men and women. About 50 per cent of men in the study had HPV, six per cent of whom yearly contract a new HPV 16 infection. The Daily Telegraph (p.8).

Care homes to get gold star ratings

Care homes are to be invited to apply for a new excellence rating to allow residents to identify which are the best performers. The Care Quality Commission scheme aims to reward homes which provide a gold standard of care beyond the norm.

A third of care homes failing

The Daily Mail reports that one in three hospitals and nursing homes are not providing decent care for the elderly, according to spot checks by the Care Quality Commission. Inspectors warned ten institutions that conditions were so bad they could have their licences withdrawn.


Parliamentary Update


Protection of Freedoms Bill: Second Reading
Health Select Committee
Commissioning: further issues
Witnesses: Calum Paton, Professor of Health Policy, Keele University, Professor Paul Corrigan, Independent Consultant, Nigel Edwards, Acting Chief Executive NHS Confederation, and Stephen Hocking, Partner, Beachcroft LLP, Dr David Bennett, Interim Chief Executive, and Adrian Masters, Director of Strategy, Monitor, Dr Ron Singer, Medical Practitioners’ Union, and Dr Anna Dixon, Director of Policy, The King’s Fund

Public Accounts Select Committee
Health landscape review
Witnesses: Chris Ham, Chief Executive, The Kings Fund, Dr Clare Gerada, Chairman, Royal College of General Practitioners, Jill Watts, Chief Executive Officer, Ramsay Healthcare UK, Dr Shane Gordon, GP Commissioning Lead, NHS East of England National Co-Lead, GP Commissioning Federation, NHS Alliance Chief Executive, NE Essex GP Commissioning Group
Publication: Delivering the Cancer Reform Strategy
Health and Social Care Bill Committee
(10.30am & 4.00pm)

Localism Bill Committee
(10.30am & 4.00pm)
House of Lords
Grand Committee in the Moses Room Pensions Bill (Lords): Committee stage (Day 1)
Other business
Public Accounts Committee published report on Delivering the Cancer Reform Strategy
NICE issue draft guidance on drugs for non-Hodgkin's lymphoma
Health Minister Lord Howe visits GE Healthcare Global Quarters in Amersham
Health Minister Anne Milton visits Leatherhead Community Hospital
King’s Fund International Congress on Telehealth & Telecare in London (until 3 March) – speakers include: Care Services Minister Paul Burstow (tomorrow)