You might not notice it just yet, but the UK has become the latest country to introduce plain, standardised packaging of cigarettes, along with Australia and France. The switch follows a landmark 'yes' vote in the House of Commons just over a year ago that saw MPs from all parties take a stand against tobacco marketing. And following a final failed legal challenge tobacco companies are no longer allowed to manufacture glitzy packs that evidence shows act as a 'silent salesman' to children. Here's how packs will change:
If the government wants to improve patient access it should invest in this; in allowing community pharmacies to help, instead of closing 'potentially' a quarter of them. Instead of being forced to go to your GP you can walk in to the pharmacist with no appointment and be seen, in most cases, immediately.
The low number of black and mixed race people signed to the UK stem cell register is sadly a reoccurring pattern. For example, the number of black or mixed race individuals who are active blood donors across England and North Wales is less than 1%.
Remaining alcohol free for a month is an achievement, which deserves to be rewarded, but compensatory drinking is not what Dry January is trying to advocate. A healthy attitude towards consumption (not necessarily total abstinence) is something which should be practiced during every month of the year to reap lasting health benefits.
Europe is facing an obesity crisis of epidemic proportions, one that threatens to overwhelm the EU's already struggling economies and place a tremendous burden on its healthcare systems. Data from the World Health Organisation (WHO) indicates that the proportion of those who are overweight or obese will rise substantially in the EU over the next decade if the issue is not tackled.
The news last month that a single NHS Trust failed to investigate the unexpected deaths of more than 1,000 people since 2011 (as revealed in a report ...
Mr Hunt dilutes this goodwill at his peril. He has transgressed the first rule of being a Health Secretary and its high time he remembered it. First, do no harm.
Earlier this month I gave a speech highlighting the need for a revolution in long term care at the Economic Ministry in Warsaw. The building brough...
It's just not good enough to hide behind the taboos - we get the idea from well known advertisements (for example, those that promote periods as a beautiful blue liquid) that it's all, well, just a bit TOO scary. But this attitude, this inability to really look squarely at womanhood and say 'yes, we have PERIODS, we bleed', it comes at a pretty huge cost.
The Assisted Dying Bill seeks to establish the principle that terminally ill people can be afforded choice and dignity whilst reducing suffering for dying people who want to control how and when they die. It merits support from all sides.
People who are able to make decisions for themselves already have the right to do so in all other aspects of their healthcare. Campaigners argue that to refuse access to assisted dying is to deny our fundamental right to self determination. Parliament has a duty however, to balance the rights of the individual against the wider impact on others and to consider the unintended harms as well as the benefits.
I always had a very basic view of how infectious diseases work: our bodies are normally clean and free of 'bad bugs', then we touch a door handle with all of those brightly coloured rods on it (as beautifully demonstrated in those Dettol adverts) , then we get ill. But is it really as simple as this?
Traditional health and adjacent business will be affected, shaped and in some case redefined. We all stand to win from this revolution which could make ageing a lot more fun than it is for many older adults today. The future really is in our hands.
Every year, three million children are exposed to second hand smoke in a car. And every week, 200 of these children are made so unwell that they have to visit their GP with health complaints that are entirely preventable.
Over the 40 years that I have been a doctor I have noticed that 'textbook' presentations of disease are becoming rarer. For example we have all come across stories of the healthiest of people succumbing to heart attacks whilst on the squash court. The same applies to cancer.
It has not yet been a month since the General Election and only a week has passed since the Queen's speech. Yet the reality of things to come under a Conservative majority government is already clear and it's the future of our NHS that concerns me the most.