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Seven days in medicine: 31 October to 6 November 2018

BMJ 2018; 363 doi: https://doi.org/10.1136/bmj.k4686 (Published 08 November 2018) Cite this as: BMJ 2018;363:k4686

Waiting times

Cutting waits is a priority for 70% of UK adults

Meeting the 18 week target for accessing elective NHS treatment should be a priority, said seven in 10 respondents to a poll of 2060 British adults conducted by the research group ComRes. Over 530 000 people are currently waiting over 18 weeks for elective treatment, and this could reach a million by 2024. A coalition of health bodies, including the Royal College of Surgeons and the British Orthopaedic Association, called on the government to prioritise cutting waiting times for non-urgent treatment in the forthcoming NHS 10 year plan.

Digital pathology

Five new AI centres are due in 2019

The UK business secretary, Greg Clark, announced that five new centres of excellence for digital pathology and imaging, including radiology, will be developed in Leeds, Oxford, Coventry, Glasgow, and London. They will use advances in artificial intelligence to find ways to speed up diagnosis and improve patient outcomes. Clark said, “The innovation at these new centres will help diagnose disease earlier to give people more options when it comes to their treatment, and make reporting more efficient, freeing up time for our much admired NHS staff time to spend on direct patient care.” The centres, which will be based at universities and NHS facilities, are expected to be up and running during 2019.

FGM

Practice declines in Africa but rises in Asia

The prevalence of female genital mutilation (FGM) in girls fell from 71.4% in 1995 to 8% in 2016 in east Africa; from 58% in 1990 to 14% in 2015 in north Africa; and from 73.6% …

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