Risk of acute attack for asthma patients More than a third of people with asthma are at high risk of a potentially fatal asthma attack, with many unaware of the fact, according to a survey of 30,000 asthma patients. Record number of nurses become QNs A record number of nurses have been awarded the Queen's Nurse (QN) title at a ceremony in London, marking the 125th year of the Queen's Nursing Institute. Labour pledges to end means tests for terminally-ill people Means testing that prevents some terminally-ill patients from receiving free social care would be ended if the Labour party were in power, shadow health secretary Andy Burnham has pledged Dementia Challenge urges partnership Promoting joint working between primary and secondary care and reducing inappropriate use of antipsychotic medication for dementia patients are core objectives of the Prime Minister's Dementia Challenge, ministers have confirmed. Learning disability nurses lack direction Recommendations aimed at bolstering learning disability nursing have been have been set out by the four UK chief nursing officers (CNOs) Health unions divided over pensions strike The three largest nursing unions are divided over whether to take further action over proposed changes to public sector pensions. NHS Direct nurses protest against 111 Nurses working for NHS Direct in the south west of England have staged a 'work in' protest against government plans to roll out the NHS 111 non-emergency hotline, which is expected to employ fewer nurses. Unannounced CQC visits for home care The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has begun a 'special programme' of 250 unannounced inspections of home care agency services. Exclusive: Community nursing strategy will not set workforce targets A government strategy for community nursing is unlikely to include a target for increasing the number of district nurses, despite RCN warnings that the discipline is in danger of dying out, the minister for public health has said. Practices must check nurses' NMC registration General practice partners across the UK are being reminded of their responsibility to ensure the nurses they employ are registered with the NMC. Health secretary: you cannot do commissioning without nurses Health secretary Andrew Lansley has pledged to 'take every opportunity' to encourage clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) to help nurses achieve real influence in commissioning. Wales facing measles outbreak Parents across North Wales are being urged to ensure that their children are up to date with both doses of the MMR vaccination following an increase in the number of measles cases across Gwynedd. No further strikes on pensions - Unison The Unison union says it has no mandate to take further industrial action over pension plans after around half of members participating in a ballot voted to accept government proposals. Leading supermarkets encourage unhealthy eating Asda, Morrisons and Iceland display junk food on four out of five checkouts, making them the 'worst offenders' for undermining parents' efforts to feed their children healthily, according to the Children's Food Campaign. Malaria cases among South Asia travellers up 22% Malaria cases among travellers returning from the Indian-subcontinent increased by 22 per cent last year, despite an overall decrease in total Malaria cases. Locally-negotiated pay for nurses Nationally-agreed NHS pay scales may be replaced with a new system of local negotiation. Localising pay spells the end for NHS - Burnham Paying nurses different salaries depending on where in the country they work would punish the poorest areas and entrench regional inequality, the Labour Party has said. Plant sterols lower cholesterol levels Plant sterols are effective in lowering cholesterol and triglyceride levels as part of positive diet and lifestyle changes, research has shown. Leadership academy supports CCG nurses A national research centre has been launched to help equip nurses to become more effective leaders. Pause the roll-out of NHS 111, urge unions Nursing leaders are calling for a pause in the roll-out of the NHS 111, warning that a lack of qualified nurses working on the telephone helpline will undermine patient care. Clear inequalities in health visitor access Children who live in Scotland's most deprived areas are less likely to be seen by a health visitor than those in privileged areas, according to research. Practice boundary pilots get underway Pilots to abolish general practice boundaries in three parts of England begin at the end of April. South Wales practice nurses win award for reducing COPD hospital admissions A team of 55 practice nurses has scooped the top prize at a national nursing awards ceremony for a project that has slashed the rate of COPD emergency hospital admissions in South Wales. EXCLUSIVE: Majority of nurses willing to work with CCGs Around 60 per cent of primary care and community nurses are willing to work with their local clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) to implement the government's health reforms, despite many initially opposing the changes. NMC slammed as 'confused' and 'dysfunctional' in interim review The NMC is confused about its primary purpose, distracted by its ambitions for expansion, and lacks a long-term financial strategy, the body charged with reviewing the nursing regulator has said.