News

Seven days in medicine: 9-15 May 2018

BMJ 2018; 361 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.k2145 (Published 17 May 2018) Cite this as: BMJ 2018;361:k2145

Measles

England sees 440 cases this year

Public Health England advised the public to ensure that they have had two doses of the measles, mumps, and rubella (MMR) vaccine after 440 laboratory confirmed measles cases were seen around England from 1 January to 9 May 2018. The most cases were reported in London (164), the south east (86), West Midlands (78), the south west (42), and West Yorkshire (37). The increase in measles circulation is associated mainly with travel to and from Europe, which has large ongoing outbreaks. People aged over 15 who missed out on MMR vaccine when they were younger have been particularly affected, as well as some under-vaccinated communities.

Immigration

Using NHS data to check for illegal immigrants is curbed

The government announced that Home Office powers to access information about patients through a controversial data sharing arrangement with the NHS, to help officials locate people who have breached their right to remain in the UK, will be limited. This followed pressure from MPs, doctors’ groups, and health charities, who warned that the practice was deterring patients from seeking NHS care. The Home Office will be able to use the memorandum of understanding only to trace a person who is being considered for deportation or whose presence is considered non-conducive to the public good. (Full story doi:10.1136/bmj.k2115)

Drug pricing

Doctors helped Greek crime ring steal cancer drugs

Greek police arrested 21 people including doctors, nurses, and pharmacists, alleging that they stole cancer drugs from the public health system to sell for a large mark-up in Italy, Germany, and Switzerland. The scheme …

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