RCGP opposed to law change in assisted dying
The RCGP will remain opposed to any change in the law on assisted dying, a consultation of its members has revealed.
In a consultation of more than 1700 members, 77 per cent who submitted individual responses to the consultation expressed the opinion that the College should remain opposed to a change in the law to permit assisted dying.
College members responded as individuals or through one of the RCGP devolved councils, one of the RCGP faculties or via a College committee or group.
Of the 28 RCGP bodies who took part, 20 reported a majority view against a change in the law.
The reasons put forward were that it would be detrimental to the doctor-patient relationship, it would put the more vulnerable groups in society at risk and it would move the focus away from investing in palliative care.
The decision to consult with members on this issue was made at the RCGP's governing council meeting in February 2013 as members' views might have changed and many new members had joined the College since 2005, when the position was last debated.
Frontline nursing and midwifery programme
The NHS Leadership Academy has announced it will support frontline nurses and midwives to help them to reflect on their strengths and how they do their job.
They will develop the skills needed for nurses and midwives through a mix of online learning and face-to-face workshops over a period of six months beginning across the country in April. Following that, more will start each month.
There are spaces for up to 5000 nurses. Recruitment on to the programme is on-going and places will be filled on a first come first served basis. Nurses must be at band 5, 6 or 7.
Nurses and midwives will be able to build on their confidence and their capability to have greater influence on care, the Academy said. The workshops aim to help them recognise what they do well and how they can improve, develop new skills and think about how their behaviour impacts those around them.
For more information visit http://www.leadershipacademy.nhs.uk
200 extra places for health visiting students
Health Education England (HEE) has commissioned 200 extra student health visiting places, in response to the recruitment challenges faced by the London area.
HEE worked with education providers to agree that three universities will take an extra cohort of 200 health visiting students between them. These students would need to start their course in March 2014 if they are to count towards 2015 goal.
Director of nursing at HEE, Lisa Bayliss-Pratt, wrote to directors of nursing across the country with a call to action to identify registered nurses or midwives in their organisation with an interest in becoming a health visitor. They were asked to identify which university staff may prefer to attend and to facilitate early release of those nurses successful in joining the March cohort.
The universities involved in the plan are the University of Surrey, the University of Greenwich and Anglia Ruskin University.
Social media connects nurses in PHE initiative
Last week Public Health England undertook a week of action to raise the awareness of health protection in nurses and midwives.
Each day had a different theme including TB and immunisation, and featured blog posts from the Department of Health and twitterchats.
Viv Bennett, director of nursing at PHE, said that the success of the week was based on the number of nurses that engaged on social media.
'A twitterchat on @WeNurses was a good example where 109 people participated in an hour's discussion but potentially we could have reached many more people, highlighting the exponential reach social media can have.
'We plan to have a further 'week of action' in June based on the theme of health and wellbeing.'
Male Breast Cancer
Obesity can increase male breast cancer risk
Obesity is associated with an increased breast cancer risk in men, results from aa study that collected data on male breast cancer from around the world have indicated.
The Male Breast Cancer Pooling Project brought together results from multiple studies and found that risk increased by about 30 per cent if men were obese.
A number of physical and hormone-related characteristics were also found to increase the risk. Klinefelter syndrome, the presence of an extra X chromosome in men, and gynecomastia, the presence of enlarged breast tissue in men, appeared to have an effect on risk separately from obesity.
The findings were published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute.
Crisis Care Concordat to improve crisis support
Emergency support for people in mental health crisis is set improve across the country as part of a new agreement between mental health trusts, paramedics and police.
It sets out how people should be treated if they suffer a mental health crisis and details how the emergency services should respond.
The Crisis Care Concordat has been signed by more than 20 national organisations to drive up the standards of care for people experiencing crisis.