New Blood Test to Help Diagnose Heart Conditions

The British Heart Foundation believes that a new test could play a major role in successfully diagnosing people with inherited heart conditions. It appears based on scientific research funded by the charity that assessing a specific group of genes enables researchers to reliably detect fundamental underlying difficulties. This latest research follows on the back of the death of Miles Frost, son of Sir David Frost, who died suddenly from a condition thought to have been inherited from his father. In... Readmore

Unique Blood-Brain Barrier Cancer Surgery is Successful

Canadian researchers have breached the human brain's protective layer in what could be a major cancer breakthrough. The innovative method utilised by the researchers was used in order to deliver cancer drugs. Scientists utilised miniscule gas-filled bubbles, which were injected into the bloodstream of patients. This enabled researchers involved in the study to create small, but permanent, holes in the blood-brain barrier. As clinical trials continue, around ten further patients will undergo the same... Readmore

Pioneering Stem Cell Donation Successfully Completed in Britain

The first UK stem cell donation from a donor using Next Generation Sequencing (NGS) has taken place. This operation has offered a lifeline to a patient suffering from cancer. NHS Blood and Transplant specialists have been working on NGS technology for some time, and British scientists can be considered pioneers in this technology. It is thought that more lives could be saved through reduced donor selection time in the future. UK clinicians have already sequenced to tissue type all bone marrow... Readmore

MRC and EPSRC make multi-million pound award to develop molecular pathology

A joint award of £16m to develop molecular pathology tests to help deliver stratified medicine in a wide range of disease areas has been made by the Medical Research Council (MRC) and the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC). In 2014, the MRC warned that while UK investment in stratified medicine reached nearly £200m in the last four years, the UK capacity for molecular pathology needed to be increased in order to capture the potential patient and economic benefits stratification... Readmore

Type 2 diabetes drug under investigation by EMA

The European Medicines Agency (EMA) has launched a review into the safety of Type 2 diabetes medicines called SGLT2 inhibitors. The review was requested by the European Commission following over a hundred cases of diabetic ketoacidosis (DKA) in patients treated with canagliflozin, dapagliflozin and empagliflozin - medicines known as SGLT2 inhibitors. The EMA says that patients who use these drugs should consult their doctor if they have any of the symptoms of DKA, which include excessive thirst,... Readmore

NICE recommends use of device to reduce catheter-related infections

The National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) has recommended the use of a device to hold catheters in place securely, which reduces the risk of catheter -related infections and could save the NHS up to £10m a year. The medical technology guidance advises using the 3M Tegaderm CHG IV securement dressing for critically-ill patients who need a central venous or arterial catheter in intensive care or high-dependency units. The evidence considered showed that the Tegaderm CHG dressing... Readmore

MHRA issues warning over potentially faulty needles

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) is asking people using steel cannula infusion sets to check them before and after use as the regulator believes there is a small risk of its needle breaking. The needles are part of infusion sets, manufactured by Unomedical, which are used in hospitals and by people at home for the infusion of medicine through an external pump. They are primarily used by patients with diabetes, Parkinson’s disease and for the treatment of chronic... Readmore

MHRA told it can lead global drive to improve public health

The Medicines and Healthcare products Regulatory Agency (MHRA) can do more to place the UK at the forefront of a global drive to improve public health, according to a new report. That’s the view of a new ‘Triennial Review’ of the agency which was tasked with investigating whether it remains fit for purpose and continues to deliver value for money for the UK taxpayer. “There are some interesting challenges ahead, both domestically and globally, but the review has validated that we are well... Readmore

Considering the role of community health services in new care models

Joined up models of care being developed by the NHS risk overlooking the full potential of community health services which are vital for their success according to a discussion paper launched today (Tuesday 21 July 2015). The paper – ‘The art of the possible – what role for community health services in reshaping care?’ - states that community services’ focus on whole person care makes them “ideally placed” to help lead and deliver new care models. Based on the views of community... Readmore

New report recommends six strategic priorities to boost cancer survival rates

A report published today (Sunday 19 July) by the Independent Cancer Taskforce recommends six strategic priorities to help the NHS achieve world-class cancer outcomes. The Taskforce’s cancer report outlines how an additional 30,000 patients every year could survive cancer for   10 years or more by 2020. Of these, around 11,000 would be through earlier diagnosis. The plan, which aims to make substantial improvements in cancer care in England, comes at a time when cancer cases are increasing.... Readmore

Focus by Hunt on a more human centred NHS is welcomed by senior healthcare figures

Today’s speech by health secretary Jeremy Hunt in which he called for a focus on the empowerment of NHS patients and staff, commitments to locally led change, more transparency and a culture of improvement rather than blame has been welcomed by senior healthcare figures. On the health secretary’s pledge to create a new body NHS Improvement, with a hosted team modelled on the air investigation branch in the air industry, Rob Webster, chief executive of the NHS Confederation, said: “The air industry’s... Readmore

Diabetes amputations reaches all-time high says new data

The number of diabetes-related amputations a week in England has reached an all-time record high of 135, according to new analysis by Diabetes UK. The figures, calculated using new Public Health England data, show that the annual number of diabetes-related amputations in England is now more than 7,000, compared to the previous figure of 6,677. This equates to seven more amputations each week. Yet, with good diabetes and footcare, up to 80 percent of these amputations can be avoided. To tackle... Readmore
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