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Assisted dying: Doctors' group adopts neutral position

Assisted dying: Doctors' group adopts neutral position

Health
Hospital doctors have dropped their 13-year opposition to the concept of helping terminally ill patients die.Following a poll of its members, the Royal College of Physicians has now adopted a neutral stance on the issue of assisted dying.Some groups have spoken out against the change, saying a respected medical body's reputation has been damaged. Others called the decision "absurd".Under UK law, it is illegal to encourage or assist a suicide.Nearly 7,000 doctors voted in the online poll: 43% thought the college should oppose a change in the law 32% wanted the college to support a change 25% were neutral And the college has shifted to a neutral stance because neither side achieved a majority of 60%.However, a group of doctors opposed to any change in the ...
NHS 'no chance of training enough staff'

NHS 'no chance of training enough staff'

Health
The NHS in England has no chance of training enough GPs and nurses to solve the shortages it faces, experts say.A report by three leading think tanks predicts that in the next five years nurse shortages will double and GP gaps nearly treble, without radical action.The Nuffield Trust, Health Foundation and King's Fund says a combination of international recruitment, student grants and innovation is needed.But the government is insisting plans are in place to recruit more staff.What is the scale of the problem? It is already well documented that the NHS is short of staff.Current figures suggest there more than 30,000 extra nurses are needed and almost 3,000 GPs.The think tanks say on curre...
Instagram eating disorder content 'out of control'

Instagram eating disorder content 'out of control'

Health
Media playback is unsupported on your device Content on Instagram that encourages eating disorders is "spiralling out of control", psychiatrists have warned.A BBC investigation found children swapping graphic images of weight loss and advice on how to make their illnesses more extreme.Dr Jon Goldin, of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, said "vulnerable" people were finding peer groups online.Instagram says it does not allow content encouraging or promoting eating disorders and removes it when aware.In January, the case of 14-year-old Molly Russell, who took her own life after viewing self-harm images, led to widespread criticism of Instagram.After public pressure the platform owned by Facebook announced a wide-ranging review and committed to...
Potent cannabis increases risk of serious mental illness, says study

Potent cannabis increases risk of serious mental illness, says study

Health
Smoking potent 'skunk-like' cannabis increases your risk of serious mental illness, say researchers. They estimate around one in 10 new cases of psychosis may be associated with strong cannabis, based on their study of European cities and towns.In London and Amsterdam, where most of the cannabis that is sold is very strong, the risk could be much more, they say in The Lancet Psychiatry.Daily use of any cannabis also makes psychosis more likely, they found.Experts say people should be aware of the potential risks to health, even though the study is not definitive proof of harm. Lead researcher and psychiatrist Dr Marta Di Forti said: "If you decide to use high potency cannabis bear in mind there is this potential risk."Dr Adrian J...