Daily digest May 22 2015

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Daily digest

Patients left to suffer as nurses fail to respond to call bells

Thousands of hospital patients are being left in pain and discomfort because nurses are not answering call bells, according to the care watchdog.

Only 13% of patients said they were attended to right away in the Care Quality Commission's latest national hospital inpatient survey, the Daily Mail has reported.

Six per cent said they waited more than five minutes after ringing their call bell, while 1% said it was not answered at all.

Read more on the Daily Mail website

Doctors admit giving pointless drugs

Four in five doctors admit that they have prescribed pointless treatments, citing a desire to get pushy patients off their backs as the main reason.

As reported in the Times, doctors confess to handing out antibiotics and ordering x-rays, tests and scans that patients did not need, in a poll that medical leaders say underlines the need for a cultural shift in medicine towards recognising that many expensive and risky treatments do not improve patients’ lives.

(£) Read more on the Times website

Prostate cancer ‘Rosetta stone’ paves way to targeted drugs 

A genetic study described by researchers as the Rosetta stone of prostate cancer could provide hope for men with advanced forms of the disease, the Guardian has reported.

British and US scientists who drew up the first comprehensive map of genetic mutations linked to different strains of prostate cancer found that almost 90% of the men whose DNA they studied carried potentially treatable defects.

The findings could lead to a range of personalised medicines that target specific gene defects, some of which are already in use or undergoing trials.

They also learned that 8% of the men were born with genetic faults that predisposed them to prostate cancer, strengthening the case for screening people with a family history of the disease.

Read more on the Guardian website