Weekend brief

Starting with a piece in today’s Telegraph, James Le Fanu reviews some of the recent reports questioning current wisdom such as eat less salt, take an aspirin a day and go for breast screening. In a nutshell he is saying the advice is too generalised – it applies to some people and not others. Also today, Norman Lamb is giving an airing to an idea that we have previously floated that patients should be charged for not turning up – in fact we anticipate that Foundation Trusts will put into place charges for no-shows in the future, maybe with an upfront booking fee refundable on attendance.

Andy Burnham previewed his attack theme for today’s health debate with a piece in the Guardian on Sunday highlighting that NHS hospitals will be allowed to use up to 49% of their capacity for private patients. There are several stories on memory but this one also in the Guardian allows you to test yours! Not before time the House of Commons Health Select Committee will be looking into the regulation, guidelines and practices of private cosmetic clinics. Finally we knew that many hospitals don’t check the standard of English spoken by nurses from abroad, now we know how many. According to the Mail 90% of NHS Trusts don’t check.

In Parliament this week, the Science and Technology  Committee report on Alcohol Guidelines are now available. The Treasury Select Committee published the Government’s response to its report into Private Finance Initiative (PFI) funding, alongside a short report commenting on recent progress and highlighting ongoing areas of concern. Also, today the Health Committee has its fifth oral evidence session on Social Care, taking evidence today from a number of key stakeholders on this challenging subject. 

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