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Robotics, microbiomes and global warming – this week’s Friday Five

High rates of substandard care homes

New research released by IPPR, found 23% of the 456,000 care home beds are in settings rated ‘inadequate’ or ‘requiring improvement’ by the Care Quality Commission. This means that good homes in areas with a high rate of substandard care homes are over-subscribed. In Newham, London and Manchester at least half of the beds were not good enough.

Read more on BBC News.

The NHS produces 5.4% of the UK’s greenhouse gases

The NHS produces higher emissions than the global average for healthcare and is responsible for 5.4% of the UK’s total carbon emissions. According to a report by the UN, the NHS’s emissions are not much lower than those for both aviation, and agriculture, forestry and land use in the UK. On Friday, NHS staff will join thousands of adults across the world in the global climate strike to raise awareness of the climate emergency.

Read more at The Guardian.

C-section babies may have weakened immune systems

A new study has found that babies born by caesarean section may have abnormal immune systems and be at greater risk of contracting bloodstream infections from hospital bugs. The seven-year study by scientists from University College London (UCL), the University of Birmingham, and the Wellcome Sanger Institute, supect that a misformed microbiome – the collection of bugs in the gut – might be to blame.

Read more on BBC News.

Brexit could hinder the UK’s success in robotic surgery

A study conducted by Imperial College London has suggested that robotic surgery is one of the technologies that key to future growth in the UK and international collaboration is key to that success.

However, the UK’s success in the field of robotic surgery could be hampered if the country loses its research partnerships with Europe after Brexit, according to the new study.

The study’s authors said there was a “consensus” that Brexit was likely to “undermine the UK’s status as a global leader in science and innovation”.



Quote of the week

“The state has abdicated its responsibility for providing care over recent decades. The private sector may have filled this gap but it consistently puts profits before people” said Harry Quilter-Pinner, a senior research fellow at the IPPR and co-author of the report that found 84% of care homes in England are owned by private firms.

Read more at The Guardian.

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