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#GPnews: Younger women at ‘highest mental health risk’

15:45 New figures have revealed that young women are the highest risk group for mental health problems, the BBC reports

According to new data released by NHS Digital, one in five women reported a common mental health disorder including depression and anxiety in 2014 – in contrast to one in eight men. 

The figures also revealed that women also have high rates of self-harm, post traumatic stress disorder and bipolar – while symptoms of anxiety and depression were almost three times as commonly reported by women aged 16-24 than men – 26% compared to 9%. 

14:05 Elsewhere today, NHS England has announced the launch of six mental health pilot sites across the country to ‘redesign services’, that it hopes will prevent patients being admitted to hospital ‘miles away from their homes’ – known as ‘out of area placements.’ 

From 1 October the sites will be aiming to reduce psychiatric hospital admissions and time spent in hospital, in a bid to put an end to adults and young people with mental health problems being sent for in-patient treatment far away from home.  

The pilot sites will be made up of NHS mental health trusts, independent sector and charitable organisations to effectively reorganise services in their area.  

12:15 Scottish health secretary Shona Robison has denied there is a GP recruitment crisis in Scotland, despite GP leaders warning that some GPs are now facing ‘inhumane workloads.’ 

Ms Robison, who was giving evidence yesterday to the Scottish parliament’s health committee, instead conceded that there was a ‘challenging’ shortage of GPs but refused to describe it as a crisis, The Times reports. 

But Dr Alan McDevitt, chair of the BMA’s Scottish GPC, told the committee earlier that there was a ‘major problem’ with recruiting new GPs, and it was starting to affect patient care. 

However, Ms Robison, who was pressed by the health committee on whether she accepted there was a crisis in general practice, responded adding: ‘No, I would characterise it as being very challenging. What I’m focused on is coming up with a range of solutions that get us to a point where people want to go into general practice, stay in general practice and work here in Scotland.’

10:52 A ‘controversial’ NHS calculator tells patients how much longer they could live by making lifestyle changes, reports the Telegraph.

The ‘Check your heart age’ calculator adds up the years a person could add to their life by quitting smoking, losing weight, or lowering blood pressure and cholesterol.

A previous version of the calculator had been criticised for checking people’s heart health without telling them what they could do improve it.

Try it out here

09:35 Common painkillers like ibuprofen may heighten the risk of heart failure in older people, according to a new study published in the BMJ.

Prof Peter Weissberg, medical director at the BHF, said: ’This large observational study reinforces previous research showing that some NSAIDs, a group of drugs commonly taken by patients with joint problems, increase the risk of developing heart failure.

’It has been known for some years now that such drugs need to be used with caution in patients with, or at high risk of, heart disease.

’This applies mostly to those who take them on a daily basis rather than only occasionally.

’Since heart and joint problems often coexist, particularly in the elderly, this study serves as a reminder to doctors to consider carefully how they prescribe NSAIDs, and to patients that they should only take the lowest effective dose for the shortest possible time.

’They should discuss their treatment with their GP if they have any concerns.’

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