Inside Health

BBC Radio 4


Dr Mark Porter demystifies health issues, separating fact from fiction and bringing clarity to conflicting health advice, with the help of regular contributor GP Margaret McCartney


Care.data, Asthma, Acne rosacea, Pacemakers

July 12th, 2016

Episode 314 of 345 episodes

Care.data, the scheme to build an enormous database containing the medical records of all English patients has been scrapped. Dr Mark Porter investigates the fall-out following the cancellation of this expensive programme, which foundered on concerns about confidentiality and public and professional trust. Chair of the national EMIS user group and Sheffield GP Dr Geoff Schrecker and GP Dr Margaret McCartney discuss the scale of the failure of the care.data programme and outline what needs to happen in the future if valuable patient data is to be used for the public good. Twelve hundred adults and children die every year in the UK from asthma attacks, and these grim statistics have remained stubbornly consistent for decades. But there is light on the horizon as researchers in the field begin to stratify the disease; identifying patients with different types of asthma and treating them accordingly. Mark visits the Churchill Hospital in Oxford where some pioneering work has taken place to develop new diagnostic tests and new treatments. Ian Pavord, Professor of Respiratory Medicine at the Nuffield Department of Medicine, shows Mark the new FENO breath test for nitric oxide to test inflammation - soon to be available for use in general practice. Acne Rosacea is a debilitating and painful condition. It's characterised by redness, spots and inflammation on the face and affects both sexes but mainly women. Dr Bav Shergill of the British Association of Dermatologists discusses latest treatments. And the first in a new series dedicated to happy accidents that have altered modern medicine. First off, the pacemaker. Dr Margaret McCartney and Carl Heneghan, Professor of Evidence Based Medicine at the University of Oxford, tell the remarkable story of the serendipitous discovery of this life-saving device.

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