The NHS Confederation gained widespread coverage of its report into how much the health service was spending on care for older patients.

However, papers were divided on whether to focus on the present gloomy situation or look to further storm clouds gathering in future.

The Times and the Daily Mail highlighted the £4m currently being spent each week on “elderly who block beds”, while the Daily Telegraph and the Financial Times chose to report that patients would see “severe” reductions in their care if a £2bn shortfall in funding for elderly care was not closed.

In addition, the Times gave coverage to the first ever audit of services for children with epilepsy which - like most audits of this kind - revealed “stark variations” in the quality of care provided.

The Telegraph, meanwhile, reported that doctors were exploiting what it described as a “24 hour retirement loophole” to avoid paying tax.

It said it had found more than 200 doctors who had avoided paying tax on their pensions by “retiring” for as little as one day and then returning to work.

The same paper also warned that the NHS was heading for a nurse shortage “disaster”, based on an investigation into cuts to nurse education places by HSJ’s sister title Nursing Times.

On a positive note, the Mail said that an “injection that allows damaged hearts to mend themselves”, and which could be given by paramedics, was being developed by scientists at Imperial College London.

Lastly, The Sunday Telegraph noted that former foreign secretary Jack Straw had revealed he had been treated for depression for 30 years, sparking praise for his honesty from mental health campaigners.