Foundation trusts seeking to maximise income from private patients have been dealt a blow this week by legal actions involving their regulator Monitor and the Charity Commission.

Hospitals say they have been hit by a 'frightening' shortage of locum staff because of changes to junior doctors' training.

Reducing health inequalities, cutting healthcare-acquired infections and planning for emergencies will be among the priorities for the health service in 2008.

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One of the sheep/goat divides in human nature is whether those in senior roles are pleasant and courteous to the apparently ordinary folk who serve them, writes Jenny Rogers.

Noel Plumridge explains how to go about choosing a GP.

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Media storms over postcode lotteries reveal the extraordinarily high standards demanded by the public. Jessica Allen argues that reform of PCTs is the best way to steer expectations and drive up service quality.

The latest specifications for housing patients in medium secure care clarify the rules and include welcome proposals to improve life in locked wards. Rebecca Norris reports.

Frontline staff will be able to devise their own strategies for spending more time with patients under productive ward. Alexis Nolan reports.

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