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NHS waiting lists reached three million, gas workers to be trained to spot risk, and hospital doctors to be clearly identifiable

A round-up of the morning’s health news headlines on Friday 13 June.

The number of people waiting for NHS treatment has reached three million for the first time in six years, amid warnings that the growing demand for care means it could potentially start routinely missing key targets, the Guardian reports.

The most recent figures from NHS England show that in April a total of 2,993,108 patients were on the waiting list for treatment, supposedly within 18 weeks. However, the real total was more than three million because six hospital trusts failed to submit data due to computer problems.

Domestic gas workers should be trained to identify people who are at risk of dying of the cold in their homes, according to guidance from NICE reported in The Telegraph.

NICE said that more than 24,000 people die as a result of the cold each winter, three quarters of which are over the age of 75.

Elsewhere, the BBC reports that hospital patients in England should know which senior doctor is responsible for overseeing their treatment, according to guidelines being published. The names should be visible over or beside the bed of patients, and they should also know the details of the nurse who can answer questions, the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges advice says.

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