Episode

Inside Health

BBC Radio 4

Health

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

Website

Prescription charges, HPV vaccine, tattoos, cycle helmets

April 3rd, 2012

Episode 82 of 329 episodes

Should prescriptions be free for everyone? They already are in Wales, Northern Ireland and Scotland - so why aren't they in England? The BMA says the current list of exemptions is unfair and outdated - but there are no government plans to scrap the charges for the 10% of people who have to pay for them. And as the vaccination campaign for young girls against the virus which causes cervical cancer and genital warts gains momentum - are boys losing out? Uptake of the vaccine among teenage girls in the UK is high - but there are no plans to extend the programme to boys - despite plans to do so in Australia and the United States. There are confusing statistics surrounding the debate over the use of bicycle helmets for both adults and children. Some research points to helmets encouraging car drivers to give cyclists less space in traffic. Up to a third of children in another study said wearing a helmet would put them off cycling in the first place - bad news for parents concerned about childhood obesity. GP Margaret McCartney uses her own risk analysis to work out how to keep herself safe and fit. Producer: Paula McGrath.

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