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#GPnews: Government to fund abortions for Northern Irish women in England

14:10 Chancellor Philip Hammond has announced that the Government intends to fund abortions in England for women from Northern Ireland, the BBC reports.

It comes after a campaign from more that 50 MPs who backed a call for Northern Irish women to have abortions for free in England – they currently have to pay.

In Northern Ireland, abortions are only allowed if a woman’s life is at risk or there is a permanent or serious risk to her physical or mental health.

10:30 A Swedish study has found that remote-controlled, flying drones with an inbuilt defibrillator can reach patients experiencing cardiac arrest four times faster than an ambulance.

Chances of survival in cardiac arrest decrease by 10% for every minute the individual goes without CPR and researchers at the Karolinska Institute in Sweden are testing to see if drones can boost survival rates.

The BBC reports that the operator who took the 999 call can provide instructions over the phone on how to operate the defibrillator and early trials have shown they can beat paramedics to the scene.

9:30 The Conservatives and the DUP defeated a bill in the House of Commons to remove the 1% public sector pay cap by a majority of 14 votes.

Labour announced on Wednesday it was forcing a House of Commons vote to end the 1% cap on public sector pay rises.

Labour’s shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth said that the NHS is ‘10,000’ GPs short and urged fellow MPs to ‘vote with their conscience’ to end the ‘hugely damaging’ cap.

However, despite support from Conservative MPs, the vote was passed with all of them voting to retain the cap.

Dr Sarah Wollaston, a GP and chair of the Commons health select committee, voted to retain the cap. However, in a blog post, she said: ’It is time in my view for pay restraint to be loosened but that cannot be done without a clear plan for how it will be funded.’

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