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#GPnews: Leaving EU would ‘strangle NHS finances’

16:44 We want to hear your views..

jeremy hunt 280x280px

jeremy hunt 280x280px

The health secretary will unveil a new package of measures to take the pressures off general practice in the coming weeks.

What do you think it should include? Give us your feedback here

16:15 Elsewhere, a new study has found that women are 27% more likely to be prescribed antibiotics than men – which could risk ‘gender inequality of antibiotic prescribing’. 

Researchers also found that the amount of antibiotics received by women was also 25% higher than men.

Read Pulse’s full story here

14:45 Four former Labour party health secretaries have said that claims from those who are arguing to leave the EU, that exiting the Union would help the NHS by freeing the health service of burdensome immigration, is a ‘dangerous lie’, the Guardian reports. 

In a joint statement, Alan Milburn, Andy Burnham, Alan Johnson and Patricia Hewitt said that leaving the EU ‘will mean less money’ given to the NHS – because exiting the European Union would ‘damage finances’, subsequently ‘strangling NHS funding, with potentially frightening consequences for staffing, waiting times and levels of service care.’

11:35 Nearly half of UK adults admit to getting out of breath running for a bus and one-in-five say they can run just 100 metres before having to stop, reports Sky News.  

The findings come from a poll carried out by the British Heart Foundation, which said they were ‘concerning, and  paint a worrying picture abut the nation’s fitness levels’. 

It also found:

  • Just 47% thought they could run up to half a mile;
  • 29% of those who claimed to be able to run a mile said they had not done so for more than a decade.

10:36 NHS staff have today launched a legal challenge over the junior doctor contract, separate to the judicial review launched by the BMA on Thursday last week.

The group, which calls itself ‘Just Health’, has used a £100,000 pot raised via crowdfunding to instruct Bindmans LLP to challenge the Department of Health over the contract imposition. 

The BMA’s judicial review action is challenging whether the Government has acted lawfully on equality grounds, whereas Just Health is challenging the legality of the health secretary’s decision to impose the contract itself.

DH lawyers have been given seven days to respond to the challenge, which argues that: 

  • ‘The Secretary of State has no legal power to impose the junior doctors contract on the majority of doctors at all;
  • Though he could in theory impose it on the group working for NHS Trusts, a small proportion of the workforce, he can only do so after consulting with relevant parties – which he has not done;
  • Furthermore, the so-called ‘decision’ to impose is legally flawed, unreasonable and not rational for a number of reasons and will ultimately not achieve the desired effect.’

9:30 Good morning and welcome to the live blog – make sure you follow our live blog throughout the day to stay up to date with the most important health news relevant to GPs. 

Sarah Wollaston 300x300

The health select committee chair, and former GP, Dr Sarah Wollaston has attacked health secretary Jeremy Hunt’s ‘entirely unreasonable’ tactics in pursuit of an ‘unachievable’ seven-day NHS. 

Writing in the Guardian yesterday, Dr Wollaston, who is also a Tory MP, claimed Mr Hunt misrepresented evidence in a bid to win public support in the Government’s dispute with the BMA over the new junior doctor contract. 

Mr Hunt imposed a new junior doctor contract after negotiations with the BMA broke down – but Dr Wollaston said that the new contract will not solve the problem of the higher death rates among patients at the weekend. 

She said: ‘It was perfectly reasonable for the government to try to tackle the higher mortality at 30 days [after admission] for those admitted to hospital at weekends but entirely unreasonable to blunder on asserting that the new contract is the answer.’ .