Change medical training, says King's Fund. . .Qa business services make loss. . .

Private insurance. . .Joint working takes off Teaching hospitals are no longer the most appropriate place for medical students to spend most of their time, claims the King's Fund Centre in a report which says changes in clinical practice mean teaching that has been traditionally centred around the bedside is proving harder to achieve.Shorter lengths of stay and the trend to see more patients in outpatient clinics are conflicting with students' needs to spend time examining and talking to patients.

government's waiting-list initiative, has announced first-year losses of£750,000 and shows debts of£4.3m due to be repaid within the next year.The company, formed through the privatisation of West Midlands regional health authority's computer services, played down the situation and said such a change 'does take time and is costly'.

Nearly 20 per cent of the population will be covered by private medical insurance by the year 2000, according to analysts Laing and Buisson.Such a group would be large enough to lobby for the right to opt out of the NHS, they say.Though 12 per cent are already insured, private healthcare remains the privilege of middle-aged professionals; by the end of the century many more middle and junior managers would be covered.

Joint planning between health and social care is developing strongly across the country, the Association of Metropolitan Authorities has found.It says social services departments are forging formal links for the first time with family health services authorities.But some local authorities have complained that FHSAs are overstretched, and the AMA is calling on the Department of Health for urgent guidance on the question of GPs charging fees for community care work.