Oct 30 2012 By Cheryl Mullin
13 killed in US after storms hit
At least 13 people have been killed in the US and millions are without power after Superstorm Sandy slammed into the New Jersey coastline and hurled a record-breaking 13ft surge of seawater at New York City.
Sandy knocked out power to at least 5.7 million people across the east of the country and New York’s main utility company said large sections of Manhattan had been plunged into darkness by the storm, with 250,000 customers without power as water pressed into the island from three sides.
The 13 deaths were reported in New Jersey, New York, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and Connecticut.
4,000 cancer patients overdiagnosed
BREAST cancer screening leads to thousands of women undergoing unnecessary treatment despite saving lives, according to an independent review.
The official study found that as many as 4,000 women in Britain receive therapy for non-life threatening forms of the disease every year because of overdiagnosis. But it revealed that about 1,300 lives are saved by mammography.
The NHS Breast Cancer Screening Programme was launched in the UK in 1988 and invites all women aged between 50 and 70 to screening every three years.
Welfare reform ‘may hit households’
WORK and Pensions Secretary Iain Duncan Smith’s welfare reforms intended to encourage claimants to find work could in fact leave many households worse off, a think-tank warned today.
The Joseph Rowntree Foundation (JRF) questioned whether computer systems at the Department for Work and Pensions would be able to cope with the introduction of the new universal credit, which is due to replace a raft of out-of-work benefits from October 2013.
It warned that the overall effect of Mr Duncan Smith’s benefit changes would be to add to the complexity of a benefits system which they were supposed to simplify.
Health department ‘inventing rules’
THERE is real concern that NHS organisations will go bankrupt under the new arrangements being brought in by the Government’s health reforms but ministers have failed to make clear what they will do if it happens, a parliamentary report has warned.
The House of Commons Public Accounts Committee said it appeared the Department of Health was “inventing rules and processes on the hoof” to deal with hospital trusts which get into financial difficulties, rather than establishing a robust protocol for action.
Ministers were unable to provide the committee with reassurance that financial problems will not damage the quality of care or access experienced by patients of troubled trusts, at a time when the service is already struggling to find £20 billion-worth of cuts and implement the reform programme, said PAC chair Margaret Hodge.
Royal Mail to create 1,000 jobs
ROYAL Mail has announced a £75 million investment programme for its UK express parcels business, creating 1,000 jobs.
The expansion is part of Royal Mail Group’s strategy to grow its parcels businesses in the UK and overseas.
In the last reported financial year, its parcels businesses accounted for almost half of the group’s revenues, excluding the Post Office, and online retailing is expected to continue increasing.