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Seven days in medicine: 11-17 May

BMJ 2016; 353 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.i2786 (Published 19 May 2016) Cite this as: BMJ 2016;353:i2786

General practice

Computer error may have led to incorrect statins

Thousands of patients in England may have incorrectly been given statins or taken off them after a fault found in the digital QRISK2 calculator in SystmOne, which assesses cardiovascular risk and is run by the software company TPP. The Medicines and Healthcare Products Regulatory Agency launched an investigation and warned that a third of GP surgeries may have been affected. It told practices to contact patients who may have had an inaccurate risk assessment and warned them not to run the calculator “until further notice.” Practices can still use the QRISK2-2016 calculator at www.qrisk.org.

NHS

Filling gaps in NHS workforce

Extending the skills of England’s NHS support staff, such as healthcare assistants, is the best way to build capacity in the health service workforce, said the Nuffield Trust think tank.1 Evidence has shown that support workers can provide good quality, patient focused care and can reduce the workload of more highly qualified staff. Also, nurses, pharmacists, physiotherapists, and paramedics can be trained to manage the growing burden of chronic disease more effectively, and nurses with advanced training, such as a masters degree, can help to fill …

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