STRENGTH IN NUMBERS

Strength in Numbers dedicated to my late mother Kay

NHS is failing patients, cancer charities warn after life-saving drugs are dropped

An alliance of cancer charities has condemned the system for allocating life-saving drugs in the NHS as a failure after the decision to pull the plug on funding for 25 separate treatments. In a letter to The Telegraph, the heads of 15 cancer charities described the announcement last week as a “knee-jerk” reaction to save money, which would leave thousands of sufferers facing uncertainty – and do nothing to solve the problem of funding new treatments. But they disclose that talks are getting under way between the Government, the pharmaceutical industry and charities to design a new system to help the NHS cope with demand.

An estimated 8,000 cancer patients a year could have their lives cut short following the decision to scale back funding from April. It came after the Cancer Drugs Fund, set up by the Coalition in 2011 following a Conservative election manifesto pledge that treatments should no longer be denied on grounds of cost, announced it is on course to overspend its £280 million budget.

Click on the link to read more

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/nhs/11354200/NHS-is-failing-patients-cancer-charities-warn-after-life-saving-drugs-are-dropped.html

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First new antibiotic in 30 years discovered in major breakthrough

The first new antibiotic to be discovered in nearly 30 years has been hailed as a ‘paradigm shift’ in the fight against the growing resistance to drugs. Teixobactin has been found to treat many common bacterial infections such as tuberculosis, septicaemia and C. diff, and could be available within five years. But more importantly it could pave the way for a new generation of antibiotics because of the way it was discovered. Scientists have always believed that the soil was teeming with new and potent antibiotics because bacteria have developed novel ways to fight off other microbes. But 99 per cent of microbes will not grow in laboratory conditions leaving researchers frustrated that they could not get to the life-saving natural drugs.

Now a team from Northeastern University in Boston, Massachusetts, have discovered a way of using an electronic chip to grow the microbes in the soil and then isolate their antibiotic chemical compounds

Click on the link to read more

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/science/science-news/11331174/First-new-antibiotic-in-30-years-discovered-in-major-breakthrough.html

antibiotics_2997553b Teixobactin has been found to treat many common bacterial infections such as tuberculosis

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