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David Cameron rides to the rescue, dentists get their come-uppance and of course – Beauty Candy



By Lilian Anekwe

Our roundup of health news headlines on Thursday 16 December.

If you were perturbed to read the expert analysis of the Government’s response to the consultation on its health white paper Pulse provided yesterday, this Daily Digest will bring you blessed relied.

Fear not, as none other than Prime Minister David Cameron himself has stepped in to allay your fears. When quizzed during Prime Minister’s Questions by a certain young Labour upstart, he said he was ‘confident’ he would deliver on his promise of year-on-year real terms increases in funding.

But, with the savvy only a politician possesses, he sensed this would not be enough to appease the good readers of the Daily Digest, so dispatched a spokesperson to The Times to assure everyone his guarantee ‘remains a guarantee’.

Possibly affronted by not having a spokesperson dispatched to their own offices, the Daily Telegraph huffily insists the NHS faces a funding cut in real terms, despite what the mystery spokesperson promised its rivals.

More than half of hospitals are failing to provide emergency surgery for children, The Times says, and the paper also carries a story on the accuracy of PSA testing could be improved by using genetic profiling.

‘Swine flu surge leaves 15 dead and 100 in intensive care’, The Independent says, darkly foretelling of potentially worse to come in its ominously grey pages.

It seems it’s dentists turn to have the screw turned on their previously lucrative contracts, according to the Daily Telegraph. Contracts that paid for the number of procedures carried out are to be ‘ripped up’ and replaced by a per-patient fee, to ‘encourage more preventative work’. And by ‘preventative work’ read turning patients with root canals away because they are less cost-effective to treat than those requiring routine check-ups. You read it here first.

The NHS has wasted £50m a year on expensive insulins that are no better than cheaper alternatives, the Telegraph says, and the Daily Mail wants us all to eat our five a day in order to save at least 33,000 lives a year.

And it also says that Beauty Candy, the first sweet designed to boost your looks, will go on sale next year. Presumably to avoid a crush the article has no details of where it will go on sale or at what cost, but a ‘sweet expert’ has already poured scorn on the concept, and claimed it wouldn’t work for toffee.

Spotted a story we’ve missed? Let us know, and we’ll update the digest throughout the day…

Daily Digest