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Help the Aged, care for the carers, and won’t somebody think of the children?

By Ellie Broughton

Our round-up of the health headlines on Thursday 12 May.

There are few days when the UK’s elderly, disabled and carer populations make the headlines, but today’s an exception. With disabled campaigners marching on London today in protest against service cuts, so it’s a good day for the papers to focus on the underrepresented.

Saga and Age UK have banded together to back the NHS reforms, the Daily Telegraph writes. The pensioners’ groups say the NHS and social care services will collapse unless the coalition Government’s health reforms are enacted because of the UK’s changing demographic.

Their calls come a day after a group of 42 senior GPs wrote in this paper that the Health and Social Care Bill would lead to ‘enormous benefits’ for ‘the most elderly, infirm and vulnerable in society’.

The story coincides with a report, mentioned in the Guardian, that carers save the country £119 billion a year.

Imelda Redmond, chief executive of the charity Carers UK, says the ageing population is making caring a fact of life for every family. But many carers are struggling with little or no help, or are facing cuts in the services and benefits they rely on.

‘Unless we urgently rethink how our society supports carers, we will see increasing numbers pushed to breaking point – forced out of work and into poverty, ill-health and isolation.’

Elsewhere, televised drug-taking has put the wind up the Times [link behind paywall] and the Daily Mail. Volunteers on a Channel Four will be shown experimenting with substances as part of a show called, ‘Drugs Live’. So?, replied DM readers, that’s nothing. You ought to bring the cameras down to my town centre on a Friday night…

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

Daily digest