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Daily Digest 16 October 2009

Today's roundup of the GP and other health stories making the headlines - including views on the swine flu vaccine programme starting next week, and the painkilling power of patient expectation.

By Mia Kukathasan

Today's roundup of the GP and other health stories making the headlines - including views on the swine flu vaccine programme starting next week, and the painkilling power of patient expectation.

The swine flu vaccination programme is due to get underway next week, and all the papers announce this is slightly different ways. The Sun and the The Times note the death of a pregnant young woman, which they suggest could encourage the vulnerable to be vaccinated. The Independent and Mail mark the death toll in the UK passing 100. The Guardian meanwhile notes that the spike in cases, while short of an outrage surge, is concerning medics.

The Mail reports that some junior doctors will again be allowed to work more than 48 hours after concerns were raised that the European Working TIme Directive is jeopardising patient safety. Doctors at 38 trusts have been allowed to derogate from the rules.

Physiological evidence suggests the placebo effect is not all in the mind. The Times reports on what appears to be a direct effect from endorphins, naturally released in the body of a patient expecting their treatment to have an effect.

Children shouldn't take Calpol for some hours after receiving a vaccine, suggest research reported in the Telegraph. The effect paracetamol has - reducing the immune response - appears to reduce vaccine effectiveness.

Spotted a story we've missed? Let us know and we'll update the digest throughout the day...

Daily Digest

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