News in Brief


I Hate Mondays

A&E departments see 4,000 patients per hour on Monday mornings – twice the typical number of hourly attendances during the rest of the week. The 2011-12 data published by the Health and Social Care Information Centre (HSCIC) show that A&E departments in England typically deal with about 4,000 cases per hour between 10-12pm on Monday mornings. A total of 17.6 million patients were seen in 2011-12, up from 16.2 million the previous year.

GMC Chair first to revalidate

Professor Sir Peter Rubin, Chair of the GMC, has become the first UK doctor to revalidate. Speaking of his revalidation he said: “I am delighted to be the first doctor in the UK to revalidate … I’ve had a number of patient and colleague feedbacks over the last few years and they’ve been helpful – partly in reaffirming all the things I do well and also in identifying what I can do better; none of us is perfect.” Professor Rubin is a Consultant Physician and Professor of Therapeutics at Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust.

Savvy Scottish GPs

Spending on drugs by GPs in Scotland fell by 11 per cent in real terms between 2004 and 2011, despite the volume of prescriptions rising by a third during that time, according to a report by Audit Scotland. This amounts to almost a £1 billion saving a year. It also suggests there is scope for further improvements and potential to save up to £26 million a year without affecting patient care.

No gifts please

Doctors who graduate from medical schools with an active policy on restricting gifts from the pharmaceutical industry are less likely to prescribe new drugs over existing alternatives, according to a study published in the BMJ. The study of 14 medical schools with an active gift restriction policy found they more readily prescribed three newly marketed psychotropic compared to a control group.