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Proton Beam TherapyA 15-year-old boy with a rare brain tumour will today begin world leading treatment at the NHS’s new Proton Beam Therapy centre at The Christie hospital in Manchester.

Mason Kettley, from Angmering, West Sussex, was diagnosed with a brain tumour in October.

Proton Beam Therapy (PBT) is a specialist form of radiotherapy that targets cancers very precisely, increasing success rates and reducing side effects, which makes it an ideal treatment for certain cancers in children who are at risk of lasting damage to organs that are still growing. The state-of-the-art treatment is only available in a handful of countries around the world.

The Christie’s Proton Beam centre is the newest and most up to date centre in the world. Mason is currently still attending school and is in the middle of preparing for his GCSEs next year. His experiences as a patient have made him decide he would like to train as a doctor. Mason said: “I’m nervous about what is going to happen, but I’m also excited to start this treatment. I’m so grateful to all the doctors involved in my care and I’d love to do what they do one day – it will be my way of giving something back.”

NHS veterans serviceThousands more veterans who struggle with civilian life will benefit from new and expanded NHS services, including mental health support, as part of the NHS’ long term plan.

A new dedicated crisis service will provide intensive support to scores of the most vulnerable former soldiers, sailors and air men and women battling alcohol, drugs and mental health problems, NHS England chief executive Simon Stevens announced. It is part of a series of measures to ramp up bespoke services for veterans, backed by £10 million of investment, to ensure that specialist health support for veterans is available across the country.

The NHS will expand the new ‘Transition, Intervention and Liaison Service’ (TILS) and roll out veteran-friendly GP surgeries and hospitals as part of efforts to make sure those who have served their country get specialist help they deserve in every part of the health service. There are around 2.6 million veterans living in the UK and around one in 20 will suffer from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder. A smaller number will have severe and complex mental health needs. Intensive support will be available around the clock to help them throughout their use of NHS services and will help address rising demand for care.

european flagNew figures reveal that 26,000 EU nationals have left the NHS since 2016 with one hospital witnessing a 94% rise in departures in 2017.

The explosive new research has been carried out by anti-Brexit campaigners Best for Britain and uncover the devastating scale of EU nationals leaving vital public services since the Brexit vote.

In the biggest research project ever undertaken on EU nationals in the UK working in public services, Best for Britain issued Freedom of Information requests to over a thousand NHS trusts, universities, fire services, ambulance services, national parks, local councils and government departments - revealing a massive 40,000 EU nationals have left since the Brexit referendum.

The data shows the number of EU nationals leaving soared in the year after the referendum, suggesting Brexit is pushing vital public sector workers out of the UK. Across the public bodies who supplied data on EU nationals in their staff, there was a 15% jump between 2016 and 2017.

Empty waiting room chairsPatients will be able to book and change medical appointments online, receive text reminders and even access maps showing them where in a hospital they need to go through a digital patient tool set to be trialled in ten hospitals. The online portal, DrDoctor, is set to save the NHS tens of millions of pounds by slashing the number of missed appointments as well as making it easier and more convenient for patients to make and manage bookings. Patients can also fill in medical forms before they arrive using the system and receive appointment letters digitally. DrDoctor is already used in ten hospitals including Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust and Frimley Health NHS Trust and will soon be trialled in 11 more across the country as the NHS works to ensure every penny is spent wisely.

Hospitals using the tool are: saving up to £2m a year each by cutting missed appointments; are seeing the number of appointments where patients don’t turn up falling by almost a third and are cutting their postage costs by more than a quarter. The tool will be trialled at NHS sites specially selected to test the impact of DrDoctor across a variety of hospitals, from small specialist sites to large inner city hospitals, with plans for the pilot to be in place by March.

UK USAScience Minister Sam Gyimah MP met with leading academics and tech disruptors in Boston, Houston and Washington DC to announce a further research partnership in medical technology, and learn from the industry.

He also revealed plans to embark on a further fact-finding mission to Texas in November, accompanied with academics and business representatives from the UK’s life sciences sector. The party will set meetings with American colleagues, and “seek out opportunities for global innovation” by exploring how the UK can more easily infiltrate US markets.

“Science has no borders. By collaborating with our US colleagues, we are pooling our power to find the answers to the biggest science questions of today and making the most of the inventions of tomorrow,” Gyimah said.

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