Can a comic a day keep the doctor away? GP Ian Williams thinks so

In these uncertain economic times there seems to be a growing nostalgia for the more simple things in life. Home baking and dressmaking is on the rise and many families are anticipating a less commercialised festive get together. Although some of this return to basics is undoubtedly driven by economic imperatives, anecdotal evidence seems to […]

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Mad, bad or simply sad: a medical humanities look at mental health legislation

Vincent Van Gogh. Self Portrait with Bandaged Ear, 1889. London, Courtauld Institute Gallery. http://www.nationalgallery.org.uk/cgi-bin/WebObjects.dll/CollectionPublisher.woa/wa/artistBiography?artistID=301 This month the Mental Health Act (MHA) 2007 came into force in England and Wales. This Act, which amends the MHA 1983, is just the latest in a series of Acts of Parliament that form part of an on-going search for […]

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The Birmingham Children’s Hospital: the day the silent scream got noisy

http://www.munch.museum.no/content.aspx?id=15 This week a leading national paper in the UK broke news  of what has been rightly called a medical scandal. They revealed the existence of a report into the systemic inadequacies of management systems at Birmingham Children’s Hospital. The impact of these failings on the standard of care provided by the hospital are now […]

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Abortion: Response to a Letter to The Times, 17th October 2008

In a letter published today in The Times Newspaper a group of Medical Law and Ethics academics call for the UK’s Abortion Act to be modernised. Whilst I welcome this contribution to the on-going debate about the provision of abortion services in the UK, I am concerned by the focus on the suggested paternalistic role of doctors […]

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World economic events:their implications for health

As I write, much of the information rich world is focussed on the precarious state of the highly interrelated global financial structures. For many others, the daily struggle to survive, coupled with lack of access to minute-to-minute updates about these unsettling events, means they remain unaware of the economic drama unfolding around the world. This, unfortunately, will […]

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“August: Osage County”, a play not to miss: London November 21, 2008 – January 21, 2009

There are some plays that leave you, quite literally, breathless with awe.  Osage County is one of them. At 3 hours and 20 minutes, this remarkable play is longer than average, and so it’s a tribute to the brilliance of the script, staging, direction and acting that it nevertheless rushes by. Watching Osage County in […]

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The high cost of going blind:patients allowed access to sight-saving drug

This week there was good news for patients in England with an age-related eye condition that leads to blindness. This week, long after a new and effective drug treatment for a relatively common condition called wet macular degeneration became commercially available, the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) ruled that it should be […]

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