NEWS: Poverty link ignored. . .Local government 'take-over'. . .Staff uphold standards. . .Improving communications. . .Labour cash boost slammed

The green paper on public health, The Health of the Nation, has been launched.But it omits figures showing the link between poor housing and poverty, which were in an earlier draft leaked to HSJ.Reaction to the document has centred on its omission of World Health Organisation targets for reducing health inequalities, which many HAs were already working towards.The green paper describes 16 potential targets, but proposes they be whittled down to 'five or six'.

Local government should be responsible for the NHS while the Department of Education takes over teaching hospitals, leftwing think-tank the Institute for Public Policy Research has proposed.Health authorities should be abolished and health revenue allocated to local authorities, it argues.'Earmarked funding for specific purposes would be neither necessary nor feasible, 'the IPPR claims.

Two-thirds of NHS staff feel they are upholding standards despite their managers, the most comprehensive survey ever of health service staff attitudes reveals.Results from 166,000 staff in 243 units show that just 34 per cent think their work aims are in line with their managers'.

The survey is part of a£4m two-year communications drive by the NHS Management Executive.Commenting on the findings, Dr John Roylance, chief executive of Bristol Royal Infirmary trust - where 60 per cent of staff took part - said: 'The drive has allowed us to see how we can integrate better communications in to the new structures'.

Health secretary WilliamWaldegrave has attacked Labour's health team for claiming it would boost NHS spending by£3bn to£4bn while its Treasury team has said it would only 'seek'to restore funding.But Mr Waldegrave admitted that 'more money would be needed for the NHS'.