14:23 Health secretary Jeremy Hunt is having a good 2017. He has more than doubled his support among Conservative supporters a recent poll by website Conservative Home shows. He had a net satisfaction rating of 29.7% in September and this had climbed to 66.3% by 31 December last year (credit to Patrick Leahy for spotting this).
— Patrick Leahy (@pmrleahy) January 4, 2017
13:00 Female doctors are better than their male counterparts – with lower mortality rates and fewer readmissions, a study has found.
The US study, which looked at four years of data and 1.5m hospital visits, suggested 32,000 lives could be saved if male doctors performed as well female doctors, reports the Independent.
The study published in JAMA Internal Medicine Journal said: ‘There is evidence that men and women may practice medicine differently.
‘Literature has shown that female physicians may be more likely to adhere to clinical guidelines, provide preventive care more often, use more patient-centred communication, perform as well or better on standardized examinations, and provide more psychosocial counselling to their patients than do their male peers.’
09:50 Thousands of patients are being forced to wait outside hospitals as staff struggle to cope with the busy first week of January, reports the Telegraph.
In London, 6,000 patients each week were being left in the back of ambulances in the winter crisis period. The report says this comes as NHS guidance now states that only patients suffering life-threatening emergencies should be treated in A&E.
Meanwhile, a spokesperson for South Central Ambulance Service confirmed to the paper that 20 of its ambulances were forced to queue outside Queen Alexandra Hospital in Portsmouth on Monday because of backups.
President of the Royal College of Emergency Medicine Taj Hassan said emergency departments were ’buckling under pressure’ with staff ‘working at the very limits of their abilities’.