This site is intended for health professionals only

#GPnews: Gove pledges £100m a week extra for the NHS

17:00 We finish off the week with the RCGP’s announcement of its new chair. Dr Helen Stokes-Lampard has won the race to replace Professor Maureen Baker when her two-year term is up this November.

Don’t forget where you heard it first!

14:57 Justice secretary, Leave EU campaigner and Prime Minister hopeful Michael Gove has pledged ‘at least £100m a week’ extra for the NHS.

Launching his candidacy for the Conservative Party leadership in a speech today, Mr Gove said that should he be voted in as leader, the Leave campaign’s promises on more funding for the NHS ‘will be delivered’.

He said: ‘The promise to use the money we currently send to Brussels and invest it instead on the priorities of the British people, principally in the NHS… With my leadership, it will be delivered. I stand by the promises that we made…

‘I will put my heart and soul into making sure that the care your son or daughter or mum or dad receives is the same I would want for my own family. Which is why I will take all the steps necessary to give the NHS at least another £100million per week by 2020.’

The eagle-eyed will note that is £250m less than what the Leave campaign had said it would spend on the NHS, but maybe he is hoping no one will mind?

Should anyone like to find out more of what Mr Gove had to say, the Spectator has helpfully published the whole speech.

14:02 Scientists have warned couples who use smartphone apps as a contraceptive method that they could be putting themselves at risk of unplanned pregnancy.

Researchers tested a range of apps, finding a majority were not accurate enough to completely protect against pregnancy, reports the Independent.

The researchers, from Georgetown University School of Medicine, said: ‘Of those reviewed, 30 apps predict days of fertility for the user and 10 do not. Only six apps had either a perfect score on accuracy or no false negatives (days of fertility classified as infertile).’

They recommended that for those going down this route, they should choose their app carefully.

12:17 Dr Margaret McCartney, RCGP council member and a GP in Glasgow, is presenting a programme on the history of general practice on BBC Radio 4 next week.

In the blurb for the two-episode programme Farewell Doctor Finlay, the BBC says Dr McCartney will tell ‘the story of general practice in the UK from the surgeon-apothecaries of the 18th century to the troubled early years of the NHS’.

A highlight includes looking back at a time in the early 20th century when ‘GPs could “prescribe money” in the form of benefits to sick and injured men’.

11:08 For the first time, the number of people over 55 diagnosed with skin cancer in the UK has topped 10,000 in one year (2014).

Cancer Research UK said the rates of malignant melanoma had increased by 155% in 20 years, when there were just 3,100 cases a year.

The charity said this was likely ‘linked to the “sun, sea and sangria” generation who benefited from the cheap package holiday boom dating from the 1960s, and the desire to have tanned skin even at the expense of sunburn’.

9:30 Official figures have shown that alcohol-related deaths have increased 4% in a year and 13% in a decade.

The Health and Social Care Information Centre found:

  • In 2014/15 there were 1.1 million estimated admissions where an alcohol-related disease, injury or condition was the primary reason for admission or a secondary diagnosis. This is 3% more than 2013/14.
  • In 2014, there were 6,831 deaths which were related to the consumption of alcohol. This is an increase of 4% on 2013 and an increase of 13% on 2004.
  • There were 333 thousand estimated admissions where an alcohol-related disease, injury or condition was the primary diagnosis or there was an alcohol-related external cause. This is similar to 2013/14 and 32% higher than 2004/05.

Izzi Seccombe, who holds its community wellbeing portfolio at the Local Government Association, told the Guardian: ’Despite drinking comparatively little, older people consume alcohol far more often. These figures warn of the dangers of regular drinking over a long period of time and the impact this can have on the body of an older person, which is less able to handle the same level of alcohol as in previous years.’