Daily digest October 2 2015

Missed the news? Read our summary of the latest health stories here

GPs being paid to cut patient referrals

Some doctors in England are being offered thousands of pounds to cut the number of patients being sent to hospital, an investigation has found.

GP practices are being paid to help local NHS groups limit the number of patient referrals and cut costs, the BBC News website reports.

Appointments affected include scans and consultations with specialists - including those for cancer patients. The British Medical Association said such incentives were 'misguided'.

The report said at least nine clinical commissioning groups were offering GP practices payments for hitting targets.

Read more on the BBC News website.

Taller people at greater risk of cancer

Tall people are more likely to get cancer, with the risk of some types of the disease increasing by as much as 30% for every four inches of height, a major new study has found.

The risk of cancer increases with height among both men and women, according to researchers in Sweden.

The Telegraph reports that researchers analysed the health of 5.5 million adults born between 1938 and 1991, with heights ranging from 3ft 3ins to 7ft 4ins.

They found that for every 10cm (four inch) increase in height, the risk of developing some form of cancer increased by 18% among women, and 11% among men.

Read more on the Telegraph website.

Going to bed late may make people fat, study finds

Going to bed late could be making people fatter, according to a new study.

Research published in the American journal Sleep suggests that going to bed later during the working week, as a teenager through to adulthood, is linked to an increase in body mass index (BMI) over time.

The Independent reports that the results highlight bedtimes as a potential target for weight management during adolescence and during the transition to adulthood.

Read more on the Independent website.

Breakthrough in male contraceptive pill

A male contraceptive pill is a step closer after scientists identified a protein key to male fertility.

Without it, sex is still possible – but pregnancy is not, Mail Online reports.

A study has been done involving mice but the Japanese scientists behind the breakthrough believe it could hold the key to the ‘long sought-after’ male pill.

Read more on the Mail Online website.

This is a free article for registered users

This article is not available as part of an institutional subscription. Why is this? You can register for free access.