This site is intended for health professionals only

IVF tourism, over-50s sex alert and being lonely kills you

By Ian Quinn

Our roundup of health news headlines on Tuesday 14 September.

The Pope’s impending visit to the UK seems to have sparked a rash of stories about contraception, sexual health and fertility treatment .

The Independent sets the tone with a report on a global survey of fertility treatment revealing at least 10,000 people go abroad each year to seek help to have a baby because the laws are too restrictive in their home country or the cost of treatment is too high.

The move, which comes after Pulse revealed how some trusts in England were scrapping IVF funding amid the financial meltdown, and features a warning to IVF tourists that no other field of medicine has such wide differences in clinical practice.

Experts at the World Congress on Fertility in Munich will today announce a code of practice on cross-border care, to be published by the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology and the International Federation of Fertility Societies later this year.

Meanwhile, in a story almost as off-putting as Lady Gaga’s bacon dress, the Times reports how the Saga generation are putting themselves at risk of a wave of STIs.

It says over-50 divorcees, back dating again after years of marriage, are often oblivious to safe sex messages, with the Family Planning Association warning GPs to consider launching specific services aimed at older people.

The FPA says the timing of the campaign in the same week as the Papal visit was a ‘pure coincidence’.

Better surely to put it about in your old age than to wither on the vine completely though, with the Daily Mail and the Telegraph featuring research findings suggesting people surrounded by family and friends and 50% less likely to die early compared with those with no social life.

For those really desperate to spice up their old age, the Mail has news that Jane Fonda has brought out a new fitness workout video, despite recently having undergone knee replacement surgery, in a bid to keep pensioners in shape.

Fortunately for them, it looks unlikely to be anything like as energetic as the original 1980s version, which would have been enough to send them in the same direction as those Billy no-mate loners in no time at all.

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

Daily digest Daily digest