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Professionals readying themselves for 'Mad Friday', novovirus shuts wards and NSAIDS 'reduce risk of cancer'

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

Healthcare professionals and the police are preparing for ‘Mad Friday’: the beginning of one of the busiest weekends of the year when many people begin their Christmas holidays. The Telegraph reports that Bristol is among the cities most well-prepared for chaos, as it introduces its new ‘drunk tank’.

The £500,000 ‘mobile alcohol recovery centre’ is staffed by ambulance crews and equipped with eight beds, bucket seats with restraint straps, two showers, a sluice and pump room, and has been designed to let crews drop off patients instead of taking them to A&E. 

In the meantime, nine hospitals around the country have been forced to shut wards due to norovirus outbreaks, according to The Independent. Southampton General, Weston General in Weston-super-Mare, Hull Royal Infirmary, Diana Princess of Wales Hospital in Grimsby, James Paget Hospital in Great Yarmouth, Alexandra Hospital in Redditch, Warwickshire’s Ellen Badger Hospital and Royal Bournemouth have all been affected. Between 600,000 and a million people are thought to catch the ‘winter vomiting bug’ every year in Britain.

But there’s good news on the BBC for any aviators dismayed by yesterday’s news that pilots are more likely to develop to skin cancer: Australian researchers have found that regularly taking aspirin and ibuprofen may help protect against some forms of the disease.

The analysis published in the Journal of Investigative Dermatology yesterday showed that NSAIDS reduced the risk of squamous cell carcinoma by 18%. NSAIDS have also been linked to reduced risk of developing other cancers, including colon cancer.

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