Virgin Care Wins £700m Contract To Run 200 NHS And Social Care Services

Sir Richard Branson’s health firm, Virgin Care, has won a £700m contract to deliver 200 types of NHS and social care services to more than 200,000 people in Bath and north-east Somerset.

The contract, which was approved on Thursday, has sparked new fears about private health firms expanding their role in the provision of publicly funded health services.

Virgin Care has been handed the contract by both Bath and North East Somerset NHS clinical commissioning group and Conservative-led Bath and North East Somerset council. It is worth £70m a year for seven years and the contract includes an option to extend it by another three years at the same price.

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Training The Immune System To Naturally Fight Cancer Is Not New

Cancer is a devastating disease with roots in genetics, diet, environmental surroundings and sometimes what some see as random chaos. But another villain may also be at the helm when it comes to spreading cancer: the very ones who claim to be preventing it. Chemotherapy is a harsh treatment designed to kill both good and bad cancer cells. Extremely high cancer return percentages have led many to believe that the chemotherapy treatments spawn more cancer. Women with breast cancer commonly die from brain tumors. Were they predisposed through genetics or is chemotherapy tainted? That might be rhetorical.

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A Commotion in the Blood — Life, Death, And The Immune System By Stephen S Hall

acomossioninthebloodIt was in 1884 that a migrant house-painter in New York with a recurrent, aggressive cancer behind his ear — a four-inch ‘ugly, ominous bunch of grapes’ — underwent a fourth surgery to attempt to save his life, but the cancer was so large and invasive that the wound could not even be closed after the procedure. Left with an open crater in his neck and a virtual death sentence, the unfortunate man developed a raging skin infection that itself might have ended his life precipitously in those days before antibiotics. Instead, he survived the infection and a second one, and — to the astonishment of his surgeons — the cancerous ulcer healed and the malignancy disappeared. Read More

Big Sugar — Sweet, White And Deadly By Brian McKenna

The documentary about Big Sugar, from it’s early days with ties to slavery to modern times with it’s detrimental effects on the everglades and political ties. This is both part 1 and part 2. Written & Directed by: Brian McKenna, and produced by: Galafilm in 2005.

Raising Cane – A History of Big Sugar In South Florida

6,000 years ago, the Everglades were created when a receding ocean revealed a bare limestone plain that covered south Florida. Fed by heavy rainfall, subtropical plants made their home on the low nutrient soil. Rain falling across central Florida made its way to Lake Okeechobee, which frequently overflowed its southern boundaries, creating a slow moving ‘river of grass’ that once covered most of present-day Dade and Broward counties as well as the southern part of the state.

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Receptionists ‘Put People Off Seeing Doctor’

Receptionists quizzing patients about why they need to see their GP could be putting some sick people off visiting their surgery, a survey suggests.

Of almost 2,000 adults questioned for Cancer Research UK, four in 10 said they disliked having to discuss their ills with office staff in order to get an appointment.

Many were worried about making a fuss.

Experts say patients must be forceful and not take no for an answer if they have symptoms that need investigating.

The government says it is funding training to help receptionists learn how to be sensitive to patients’ needs.

Probing Questions

Receptionists are the first point of contact in primary care and it is their job to decide which patients should see the GP and how urgently.

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Student Nurse Reveals ‘Soul Destroying’ Realities Of Career In Open Letter

‘Words cannot express how miserable I was today and have been on so many occasions in the past. If anyone asked me advice on pursuing a career in nursing I would strongly advise against it. It is by far the worst decision I have ever made’

A student nurse’s post exposing the brutal realities of the nursing profession has gone viral, after they described being “soul destroyed” by exhausting work on low pay.

The nurse, who lives in Ireland and is a single parent, submitted their experience to the Facebook page ‘Support for Nurses, Midwives and Frontline Staff in Ireland’. They describe how they feel “on the brink of giving up” in the brutally honest insight to life for nurses.

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Greenpeace UK Petition | UK Government: Don’t Waste Billions Of £s On Nuclear Power

Greenpeace UK is asking people to Sign The Petition, asking the government to start investing in renewables, instead of wasting billions on Hinkle

UK Government: Don’t Waste Billions Of £s On Nuclear Power

Update, September 2016: The government has now approved Hinkley. But you can still sign the petition and we’ll keep you posted on how we can work together to stop the nuclear plant from being built.

Government plans to build a new nuclear power station at Hinkley Point in Somerset are shaping up to be a disaster. Hinkley’s already 8 years overdue. And by the time it’s finished it’ll be the most expensive object on earth.

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Student Doctor Numbers To Rise By 25%

The number of medical school places will increase by 25% from 2018 under plans to make England “self-sufficient” in training doctors.

The government’s plan will see an expansion in training places from 6,000 to 7,500 a year.

Ministers believe increasing the number of home-grown doctors will be essential given the ageing population.

There is also concern it will become more difficult to recruit doctors trained abroad in the future.

About a quarter of the medical workforce is trained outside the UK, but the impact of Brexit and a global shortage of doctors could make it harder to recruit so many in the future.

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Researchers Identify Fungus As A Key Factor In Crohn’s Disease

Scientists from Case Western Reserve University have identified a species of fungus that may play a key role in the development of Crohn’s disease, in a study published in the journal mBio.

“We already know that bacteria, in addition to genetic and dietary factors, play a major role in causing Crohn’s disease,” lead author Mahmoud Ghannoum said. “Essentially, patients with Crohn’s have abnormal immune responses to these bacteria, which inhabit the intestines of all people. While most researchers focus their investigations on these bacteria, few have examined the role of fungi, which are also present in everyone’s intestines.”

The study strengthens the evidence that a healthy microbiome – the billions of microorganisms that live naturally in and on the human body, particularly in the gut – plays a key role in regulating immune health and preventing inflammatory bowel disease (IBD).

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Privatisation Of The NHS: Professor Allyson Pollock

The Abolition Of The NHS In England

15 March, 2016

On Friday, the cross party NHS Bill returned to the Commons for its second reading. The Bill was filibustered by the Conservatives, and following only 17 minutes of debate, it was adjourned. The second reading is unlikely to continue.

Most people are probably unaware of what’s happening. But increasingly the market is invading. Virgin now has over 300 NHS contracts, and an active litigation department. They have successfully prevented commissioners in Hull from allowing local GPs to run primary care services, and are facing a legal challenge from the local trust in Kent to their £128 million contract because of concerns about patient and staff safety.

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