Why Grenfell survivors can’t begin to recover while painful limbo continues

21/08/2017 Alexandra Topping 0

Psychological support can be of little help to people who have no home or no body to mourn, psychiatrist Dr Lynne Jones says

The Old Chapel in the St Charles Centre for Health and Wellbeing in west London is no longer solely a place of worship. But for attendees of a workshop on how to support survivors of the Grenfell Tower fire, one of the carefully stencilled Beatitudes on the wall still resonates powerfully. “Blessed are those that mourn,” it reads. “For they shall be comforted.”

Whatever the beliefs of those attending the free Doctors of the World session, entitled “Grief, loss and disaster: how can we help?”, it is a maxim they are steadfastly trying to follow. But what soon becomes clear is that the path towards comfort for Grenfell survivors begins not with professional psychological assistance, but with sympathy and the provision of the essentials they have lost.

Related: After Grenfell: a carnival to remember

Related: Just 30% of Grenfell Tower fire funds have reached victims

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Connor Sparrowhawk: no risk assessments before teenager’s death, tribunal finds

Dr Valerie Murphy faces sanction after tribunal finds further failings over death of 18-year-old who drowned at NHS unit

A senior psychiatrist failed to carry out any risk assessments on an epileptic teenager before he had a seizure and drowned in a bath, a medical tribunal has found.

Dr Valerie Murphy was the lead clinician responsible for treating Connor Sparrowhawk, 18, who died in an NHS care unit in Oxford on 4 July 2013.

Related: ‘We never thought he wouldn’t come home’: why did our son, Connor Sparrowhawk, die?

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Imported pork from leading supermarkets may cause hepatitis

20/08/2017 Press Association 0

Sausages and ham sold at a leading supermarket may have infected British shoppers with a virus that can cause liver failure and death

Pork products sold at a leading supermarket may have infected British shoppers with a virus that can cause liver failure and death, it has emerged.

Researchers at Public Health England (PHE) probed the shopping habits of those infected with hepatitis E and found the consumption of ham and sausages from one store, identified only as “supermarket X”, was a recurring feature.

Related: Popularity of sushi has brought rise in parasitic infections, warn doctors

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UK scientists create world’s smallest surgical robot to start a hospital revolution

20/08/2017 Rachel Ellis 0

British-built Versius device will slash costs, improve patient recovery times and help speed up keyhole surgery

British scientists have developed the world’s smallest surgical robot which could transform everyday operations for tens of thousands of patients.

From a converted pig shed in the Cambridgeshire countryside, a team of 100 scientists and engineers have used low-cost technology originally developed for mobile phones and space industries to create the first robotic arm specifically designed to carry out keyhole surgery.

Related: The NHS saved me. As a scientist, I must help to save it | Stephen Hawking

Related: Meet Eva, the workplace robot that won’t necessarily steal your job

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School exclusion ‘linked to long-term mental health problems’ – study

19/08/2017 Jamie Doward 0

Research shows that exclusions can amplify pupils’ psychological distress and encourage behaviour it intends to punish

Excluding children from school may lead to long-term psychiatric problems and psychological distress, a major new study has shown.

The research by the University of Exeter also finds that poor mental health can lead to school exclusion.

Related: Can a new technique stem England’s rising tide of school exclusions?

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Jeremy Hunt accuses Stephen Hawking of ‘pernicious falsehood’ in NHS row

19/08/2017 Nicola Slawson 0

Health secretary reacts to physicist’s claim that the Conservatives are trying to implement US-style health insurance system

Jeremy Hunt has accused Stephen Hawking of a “pernicious” lie after the physicist said it seemed the Tories were steering the UK towards a US-style health insurance system.

Hours after the health secretary was criticised for claiming Hawking was wrong in the row about the government’s seven-day NHS plan, he leapt back into the fray with two tweets defending the Conservative party’s record on the health service.

Most pernicious falsehood from Stephen Hawking is idea govt wants US-style insurance system.Is it 2 much to ask him to look at evidence? 1/2

NHS under Cons has seen more money,more docs and more nurses than ever in history.Those with private med insurance DOWN 9.4% since 2009! 2/2

Stephen Hawking is brilliant physicist but wrong on lack of evidence 4 weekend effect.2015 Fremantle study most comprehensive ever 1/2

And whatever entrenched opposition,no responsible health sec could ignore it if you want NHS 2 be safest health service in world as I do 2/2

Related: The NHS saved me. As a scientist, I must help to save it | Stephen Hawking

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The NHS saved me. As a scientist, I must help to save it | Stephen Hawking

18/08/2017 Stephen Hawking 0

The crisis in the health service has been created by politicians who want to privatise it – when public opinion, and the evidence, point in the opposite direction

Like many people, I have personal experience of the NHS. In my case, medical care, personal life and scientific life are all intertwined. I have received a large amount of high-quality NHS treatment and would not be here today if it were not for the service.

The care I have received since being diagnosed with motor neurone disease as a student in 1962 has enabled me to live my life as I want, and to contribute to major advances in our understanding of the universe. In July I celebrated my 75th birthday with an international science conference in Cambridge. I still have a full-time job as director of research at the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology and, with two colleagues, am soon to publish another scientific paper on quantum black holes.

Related: Stephen Hawking blames Tory politicians for damaging NHS

When public figures abuse scientific argument to justify policies, it debases scientific culture

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Stephen Hawking blames Tory politicians for damaging NHS

Exclusive: Physicist criticises ministers over funding cuts, privatisation and pay caps before address revealing his reliance on health service

Stephen Hawking has accused ministers of damaging the NHS, blaming the Conservatives in a passionate and sustained attack for slashing funding, weakening the health service though privatisation, demoralising staff by curbing pay and cutting social care support.

The renowned 75-year-old physicist was speaking to promote an address he will give on Saturday outlining how he owes his long life and achievements to the NHS care he received, and setting out his fears for a service he believes is being turned into “a US-style insurance system”.

Related: The NHS saved me. As a scientist, I must help to save it | Stephen Hawking

Stephen Hawking is brilliant physicist but wrong on lack of evidence 4 weekend effect.2015 Fremantle study most comprehensive ever 1/2

And whatever entrenched opposition,no responsible health sec could ignore it if you want NHS 2 be safest health service in world as I do 2/2

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Hate hearing someone eat? It could be misophonia – or plain old misanthropy | Nicholas Lezard

18/08/2017 Nicholas Lezard 0

I think misophonia – a phobia of sounds – is perhaps as much an existential condition as a physiological one. For me it’s worse the morning after a few drinks

For some time I lived with someone who did not like the way I breathed. Apparently I do not breathe regularly; I hold it in and release it, as if I am perpetually in suspense, or on the alert for some calamity. (This seems about right.) For some time, I assumed that this was simply a building frustration with the fact that I was breathing at all: but it turns out she may well have had misophonia, a condition whose sufferers are tipped into rage by sounds like other people eating, clicking a biro, or, indeed, breathing. Researchers at Newcastle University bunged volunteers into an MRI scanner, played recordings of “trigger sounds” and watched the misophones’ brains light up in outrage.

Well, we’ve all been there. That, though, is the problem. And although I am no scientist, or at least unable to get my hands on an MRI scanner in order to verify their results, I would suspect that the condition is more flexible than these good scientists are leading us to believe. Indeed, it was in order to quash scientific scepticism about the condition’s existence that the experiment was performed in the first place.

One does not have to be misophonic, for instance, to be distressed by the sound of someone playing music on their phone

Related: Crisps, keyboards, pens​ – how do you treat an unusual phobia?

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Newcastle hospitals chief sacked for gross misconduct

17/08/2017 Press Association 0

Sir Leonard Fenwick, longest-serving NHS chief executive, dismissed after inquiry into claims of inappropriate behaviour

The longest-serving NHS hospital boss has been sacked for gross misconduct and is being investigated by the service’s internal anti-fraud police.

Sir Leonard Fenwick was dismissed by the board of Newcastle upon Tyne hospitals foundation trust after 39 years for misconduct involving “inappropriate behaviour, use of resources and a range of governance issues”.

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Now NHS cuts are stripping basic medicines from the poor | Polly Toynbee

17/08/2017 Polly Toynbee 0

The government tries to deny cuts exist. But some hapless GPs are being forced to stop providing everyday medications to those unable to pay for them

The retreat of the health service is stealthy and haphazard, as a creeping postcode lottery of cuts gradually erodes the “national” in NHS. IVF, hip and knee operations are being cut back randomly in some regions. In some places patients can only get one cataract fixed: seeing with one eye is enough.

Related: Leak shows ‘devastating’ impact of planned NHS cuts in London

The ban on all over-the-counter medicines comes with a screed of cant about the importance of promoting ‘self-care’

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Sexual health shake-up in south-west London unsafe, experts say

Cost-cutting plans in three boroughs will lead to more STIs, HIV and unintended pregnancies, senior doctors warn

Senior doctors have warned that a major shake-up of sexual health services in three London boroughs will lead to more unintended pregnancies and sexually transmitted infections.

As concerns grow about the funding of sexual health services across England, 14 experts in the field at St George’s hospital in south-west London have written to NHS and local council leaders branding the money-saving changes “unsafe, unworkable and unsustainable”.

Related: Government cuts ‘leave sexual health services at tipping point’

Related: Cases of syphilis hit highest level in England since 1949

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UK needs 71,000 more care home places in eight years, study predicts

15/08/2017 Sarah Marsh 0

Britain faces a worsening social care crisis with people living longer but with substantial care needs, researchers say

An extra 71,000 care home spaces are needed in the next eight years to cope with Britain’s soaring demand as people living longer face more health problems, a study has found.

New research predicts there will be an additional 353,000 older people with complex needs by 2025, requiring tens of thousands more beds.

Related: What are your experiences of care homes in the UK?

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Drug-related deaths in Scotland more than double in 10 years

15/08/2017 Damien Gayle 0

Calls for Holyrood to go it alone and reform law after data shows rate of death two and half times that of UK as a whole

More than twice as many people are dying from drug use in Scotland than a decade ago, according to figures that show the country’s rate of drug-related deaths is two and a half times that of the UK as a whole.

A total of 867 people in Scotland died after using illegal or prescription drugs in 2016, 23% more than a year earlier, and 106% more than in 2006, figures from National Records of Scotland show. Heroin and opioids were implicated in 88% of those deaths.

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Charlie Gard parents set up foundation with £1.3m of donations

15/08/2017 Nadia Khomami 0

Charlie Gard Foundation, named for boy who died after long legal battle, will aim to help other children with rare illnesses

The parents of Charlie Gard, the 11-month-old boy who died last month after a long legal battle, have said they will use £1.3m donated by well-wishers to set up a foundation in their son’s name to help other children with rare diseases.

Chris Gard and Connie Yates announced their decision on a fundraising website. After the couple appealed for cash to cover his medical bills on the GoFundMe page more than six months ago, they received donations from more than 84,000 people.

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Charlie Gard parents set up foundation with £1.3m of donations

15/08/2017 Nadia Khomami 0

Charlie Gard Foundation, named for boy who died after long legal battle, will aim to help other children with rare illnesses

The parents of Charlie Gard, the 11-month-old boy who died last month after a long legal battle, have said they will use £1.3m donated by well-wishers to set up a foundation in their son’s name to help other children with rare diseases.

Chris Gard and Connie Yates announced their decision on a fundraising website. After the couple appealed for cash to cover his medical bills on the GoFundMe page more than six months ago, they received donations from more than 84,000 people.

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Gender dysphoria patients deserve better treatment than I can give them | Zara Aziz

15/08/2017 Zara Aziz 0

GPs don’t have the time or the expertise to provide the holistic treatment that transgender patients require. Proper services are required urgently

Gender identity clinics have seen a huge demand for services in recent years. Waits can vary from 12 to 18 months in most cases, but can extend to three years in some parts of the country. It is estimated that about 1% of the population is transgender, although some believe this figure to be higher. Many have a higher incidence of mental health problems, such as depression and anxiety.

Those waiting months for their first appointment can resort to buying unverified hormonal treatments on the black market, seeing private specialists (often online) or looking for support and prescriptions from their GP. Private specialists can reassure them that their GP will prescribe and monitor their treatments. This leads to some difficult conversations with patients.

Patients are faced with conflicting messages. The profession, too, remains uneasy and unsupported

Related: The Tories are on the right side of the transgender debate | Matthew d’Ancona

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