It was no great surprise that the papers went wild for the Tories' freedom of information 'revelation' that our hospitals are overrun with 'vermin'.

The tabloids and the Daily Mail led, detailing rats in hospitals and maggots in patients' slippers. Oh, and wasps' nests.

Bad news for hospitals, but it's not been all negative press for maggots this week, as it turns out they can also "help kill off MRSA bugs" (Daily Mirror). The Mail claimed that "the wound-cleaning power of fly larvae, or maggots, has been known for centuries". Presumably just not by other journalists.

Drug debate

In the days before the Olympics and the war in Georgia, health dominated the papers, with acres of negative coverage about the decision by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence not to recommend the use of four new drugs for kidney cancer.

Disgraced former MP, now media commentator - and apparently cancer expert - Neil Hamilton exemplified the tone of the coverage with his hard-hitting conclusion in the Sunday Express that "NICE should really be called NASTY" (I bet they've never heard that one before).

Managers were under fire too, following a report from the Rarer Cancers Forum on the variation in successful appeals to PCT exception panels. According to The Guardian, the investigation found that many of these "were dominated by managers, who lacked clinical experience of these complex areas of medicine". Or, as The Sun put it: "Patients had to beg with NHS bean-counters for high-cost cancer medication".