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Doctor agency charges still 'egregious', calls for 20% sugar tax and a drug to live to 120

A round-up of the morning’s health news headlines

Hospitals could spend ‘£11,000’ on locum doctors over bank holidays, the Telegraph reports.

The Government recently introduced a ‘complex’ set of rules capping NHS spend with locum agencies but an investigation shows they have not banned the most ‘egregious’ payments, the paper says.

An agency can charge a hospital £3,733 for one 24-hour shift, including time on call, because the rules are ‘so generous’, the investigation showed.

A health select committee report on childhood obesity has recommended that the Government introduces a 20% sugar tax, reports the Guardian.

It said: ’A sugary drinks tax is an essential part of a wider package of measures to tackle childhood obesity.’

The Government is due to reveal its own strategy for how to tackle growing rates of childhood obesity shortly.

Common diabetes drug metformin could soon be trialled on healthy people, reports the Daily Mail - which further claims it could make them live to 120 years old.

American regulators have given the go-ahead for the first trials next year, with scientists believing it could stave of degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s.

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