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Struggling hospitals facing 'huge tragedy'

Struggling hospitals facing 'huge tragedy'

Health
Patients are at risk in overcrowded hospitals as the NHS struggles to cope with the deluge of patients seen in recent weeks, a senior doctor has said.Prof Suzanne Mason, from the Royal College of Emergency Medicine, described it as a "huge tragedy".Reports have emerged of patients facing long waits for treatment and being stuck on trolleys in corridors and of ambulances left queuing outside A&E.NHS bosses have responded by cancelling non-urgent care en masse.Tens of thousands of operations, treatments and appointments have been put off for the rest of January as hospitals have tried to ease some of the pressure.But Prof Mason said the move was "too little too late" as hospitals simply had no beds free and these treatments would have had to be cancelled anyway.She added: "Patient safety...
Bird pulled from brink of extinction facing poisoning threat

Bird pulled from brink of extinction facing poisoning threat

Science
The red kite has become more common in the UK in the past 30 years, thanks to conservation schemes.But, while numbers of the birds of prey are on the rise, scientists say human factors threaten to derail progress.Post-mortem tests on wild red kites found many had been poisoned by lead shot, rat poison or pesticides.The study, published in the European Journal of Wildlife Research, suggests poisoning of red kites may be slowing their rate of recovery in England.Dr Jenny Jaffe of the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), who worked on the study, said birds of prey, and especially scavengers, would eat animals that contained lead shot, leading to lead poisoning.''That can be changed by changing the shot gun cartridges to non lead, which a lot of countries do,'' she told BBC News. ''And, there i...
The huge challenges facing Zimbabwe's next leader

The huge challenges facing Zimbabwe's next leader

World
To get under the skin of the problems facing the incoming Zimbabwean president, you need to get out of the big cities and into rural areas where the bulk of the population live.Many eke out an existence in this economically crippled nation. People like Olivia Mshunga, who lives as the youngest of three generations on a small piece of land in Domboshava.Planting ground nuts in the sandy soil, she wants President-designate Emmerson Mnangagwa to lift her out of subsistence farming.She says: "We are struggling for a long time, no money, no jobs in Zimbabwe, so we want to change our life."Video:Mnangagwa promises 'new democracy'Her next door neighbour Viola Shamuyarira has similar hopes, while Ms Shamuyarira's 18-year-old daughter Yardley just wants a better wheelchair so she can get a job as a...
Moody's: Energy-rich Qatar facing economic risks

Moody's: Energy-rich Qatar facing economic risks

Business
Aug. 8 (UPI) -- Qatar's finances remains exposed to risks associated with lingering regional disputes and declining oil-related revenues, Moody's Investors Service said.Saudi Arabia in June led a coalition of Middle East countries in severing ties with Qatar, adding a layer of geopolitical risk to the global energy market. Saudi Arabia is the largest oil producer in the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries, Qatar is a leading natural gas supplier and the Persian Gulf is a choke point for the flow of energy supplies from the region.The countries accused Qatar of supporting terrorist networks and called on the nation to downgrade its relations with the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt and close its al-Jazeera media outlet, among other things.The ratings agency said it lowered its outlook...
Texas energy sector facing slight headwinds

Texas energy sector facing slight headwinds

Business
July 24 (UPI) -- Strong job growth in Texas was apparent, though some energy sector indicators are still presenting headwinds, the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas said.A report from the Federal Reserve Bank of Dallas found job growth in the state was 3.6 percent and the overall forecast for the year was 2.8 percent, an upward revision from 2.6 expected in its last forecast."Strong job growth in June and a rebound in the leading index pushed the job forecast to its highest level this year," Keith R. Phillips, the fed's assistant vice president, said in a statement. "Growth in the second quarter was 2.8 percent, the fastest we have seen since the end of 2014."The report found indicators from the energy sector were acting negatively on overall prospects, though new exploration and production i...