Daily digest 16 June 2015

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Nurses miss patient having heart attack as vending machine blocks alarm

Nurses failed to respond when a patient had a heart attack on the operating table because a vending machine had been placed in front of a cardiac arrest alarm in a hospital staff room, it is claimed.

Failure to see the flashing lights resulted in a ‘serious breach of patient safety’, insisted a whistleblower at the Liverpool Heart and Chest Hospital, Merseyside.

As reported in the Daily Telegraph, the hospital said it ‘responded immediately when this was brought to our attention’.

The patient made a full recovery.

Read more on the Telegraph website

Universal jab could prevent all strains of flu

A robust ‘one-shot’ flu vaccine could be in sight after scientists discovered that almost half the adults in Britain have strong immune defences against the virus, the Times has reported.

Andrew Hayward, professor of epidemiology at University College London, and colleagues at universities around the world analysed the records of 1,400 unvaccinated English adults over four years.

They found that 43% of the participants had specialised immune cells that afforded protection against both seasonal flu and pandemic strains such as swine flu, a discovery which could lead to a powerful vaccine that stimulates these cells and teaches them to recognise a protein that lies at the heart of the influenza A viruses.

(£) Read more on the Times website

Chocolate reduces the risk of stroke and heart attack

Scientists say that regularly tucking into a few pieces of chocolate – even milk chocolate – may be good for us, the Daily Mail has reported.

A 12-year study of 21,000 Britons found that people who regularly ate chocolate – some of whom consumed up to 100g a day – were 11% less likely to have a heart attack, stroke or other cardiovascular problem than people who ate none at all.

Eating chocolate was also associated with a 25% reduced chance of dying with a heart problem.

Read more on the Mail Online website

Government has 'failed' NHS patients, say dentists

One in three NHS-listed dentists in England is refusing to take on any new NHS patients – and even those who offer appointments are making patients wait up to nine months, the Independent has reported.

The consumer group Which?, which carried out the investigation, said it was time for the Competition and Markets Authority to intervene to ensure dentists were complying with rules.

Dentists said the government had ‘failed’ NHS patients, with a complex payments system they said stops dentists from taking on extra patients as demand grows.

Read more on the Independent website

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