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NEWS IN BRIEF: Walk-in Centre Approved; New Boots Pharmacy; Commuters; Sugar Tax; E-cigarettes


17 Mar 2016

Plans to move Guildhall walk-in centre to hospital are approved

The changes, which start on July 1, will see the GP practice remain at Guildhall Walk until at least April 2017, the Portsmouth News reports.

But the walk-in facility will be moved to St Mary’s Hospital with only registered patients allowed to use the current walk-in service at the practice.

To help enhance the walk-in centre at St Mary’s, GPs will be on-hand between 8am and 8pm, joining nurses who are already based at the hospital.

The proposals will also see the current pharmacy-based urgent care services extended to treat more illnesses and injuries and serve more people.

New Boots pharmacy planned for Southend Hospital

A new Boots pharmacy is to open in Southend Hospital, the Southend Echo reports.

The hospital, in Prittlewell Chase, has announced plans to follow Basildon Hospital in signing up the pharmacy chain.

The Boots shop will work alongside the existing hospital pharmacy, and will be open to outpatients and visitors.

The hospital says Boots will offer shorter waiting times for patients, as medication will be handed over more quickly.

Commuters who shun car travel keep slimmer, study concludes

People who cycle, walk or catch the train or bus to work keep more weight off than commuters who travel by car, a large UK study has found, the BBC reports.

The results come from 150,000 UK adults aged 40 or older who agreed to be measured and weighed and fill in a survey about their typical journey to and from work.

Cycling came out as the best activity for staying trim, followed by walking. But even those who used public transport were leaner than car users.

Sugar tax: Osborne’s two-tier levy brings mixed response

George Osborne has responded to the growing clamour for tough action on obesity by announcing plans for a sugary soft drinks tax intended to make children healthier and cut the disease’s £5bn a year cost to the NHS, The Guardian reports.

The levy, which will start in April 2018, will put up the price of drinks such as Red Bull, Capri Sun, Sprite and several versions of cola.

The Treasury has not decided exactly how much extra they will force producers to charge for heavily sweetened drinks, but health campaigners want it to be 20%.

Companies that produce or import soft drinks with significant added sugar will have to pay one level of the tax for drinks containing at least 5g of sugar per 100ml and a higher rate for those with more than 8g per 100ml.

Plans to ban e-cigarettes in public places defeated

Plans to ban e-cigarettes for the first time in the UK in public places where children are present have been defeated, The Telegraph reports.

The landmark vote by the Welsh Assembly aimed to restrict the use of nicotine inhaling devices in public places such as schools,restaurants and on public transport.

But the contentious legislation was defeated by just one vote in the Senedd.

Opposition parties and even some health charities had strongly criticised the planned curb on e-cigarettes.


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