17:05 Health select committee chair Dr Sarah Wollaston has refused to hand out ‘misleading’ Vote Leave NHS leaflets, despite backing so called ‘Brexit’, according to The Independent.
The senior Tory MP and former GP said the Leave campaign should ‘stop treating the public like fools’ by claiming that leaving the EU would free-up £350m a week to spend on the NHS.
Dr Wollaston added: ‘There are legitimate concerns about pressures of population growth on housing, schools and certain areas of health provision but the current pre-occupation [with] exploiting the NHS, and its protected branding, to support the leave campaign’s argument on the EU is a cynical distortion which undermines the credibility of their other arguments.’
15:45 Most GPs think that moderate alcohol consumption is acceptable, unlike the Chief Medical Officers who recently said that there is no safe level of alcohol consumption.
A study from CAMRA (campaign for real ale) has found that 60% of 1,006 GPs surveyed disagreed with the CMOs’ statement that there was no safe level of alcohol consumption and 63% agreed that moderate alcohol could be part of a healthy lifestyle.
14:30 A judicial review examining the impact of the new junior doctor contract has been been ‘suspended’ while the new contract agreed between the BMA and the Government is being put to junior doctors.
The review, which was launched by campaign group Justice for Health in March, was to examine the impact the new junior doctor contract had on patient safety and the stability of the NHS, following its imposition by health secretary Jeremy Hunt.
But the BMA and the Government reached an agreement over some of the key areas of the contract in the long-running dispute, which will see trainees given enhanced payments for evening and weekend working.
This will be subject to a vote of junior doctors who are members of the BMA, who could still throw it out.
Justice for Health said that legal action would be suspended while the revised contract’s terms and conditions are published – but adds that it still believes Mr Hunt ‘acted unlawfully’ by initially imposing the contract in February.
⚖UPDATE: We’ve suspended our JR whilst we await the referendum result & remain ready to fight any future imposition. pic.twitter.com/sO0yBipcNB
— Justice for Health (@Justice4Health_) May 23, 2016
12:25 A vote to leave the EU could jeopardise the search for a cancer cure and slow down the access to new medicines, scientists and regulators have claimed.
The chairman of the Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency said that leaving the EU would result in Britain being unable to access rapid alerts warning of dangers in drugs and healthcare devices, The Telegraph reports.
Meanwhile, pharmaceutical companies, including GlaxoSmithKline, have weighed in on the debate, adding that leaving the EU could result in a lack of shared systems – meaning British patients would be faced with longer waits for drugs available on the continent.
Professor Patrick Vallance, president of pharmaceutical research and development for GlaxoSmithKline, said: ‘We are in an area of unprecedented upswing. There are cures coming along and the last thing anyone needs is regulatory uncertainty.
‘If you look at those countries that aren’t part of the EU, on average it takes longer to get new drugs approved.’
10:50 It also looks as though there will be big changes to the CQC’s inspection approach to hospitals, following the announcement of the regulator’s new five-year strategy.
The move to scale back the regularity of hospital inspections will also be mirrored in GP practices, after the publication of the NHS England’s GP Forward View confirmed that practices rated ‘good’ or ‘outstanding’ would only be inspected once every five years.
9:40 This morning we are leading on the CQC’s new five-year strategy and what it could mean for GPs.
In the regulator’s new outlook up until 2020, it has said that it intends to ramp up unannounced inspections of general practice in the next few years and will target practices which have received a number of reports of poor care.
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