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PR news in brief

Our weekly round up of PR and medical education stories.

Britons' cancer ignorance

Britons are unaware that diet, alcohol and weight are all factors that can influence the risk of contracting cancer says a new study. Commissioned by Cancer Research UK, the research suggests that at least half of all cases of cancer could be prevented. But Cancer Research UK says that the message has not got through to the public. The survey results reveal much confusion about what increases the risk of cancer. Of the 4,000 people questioned, 66 per cent were unaware that being overweight increases the risk of some cancers, with 67 per cent not knowing that a diet low in fruit and vegetables could increase their chance of getting the disease.

Public selects self-help books

Doctors are warning patients that while self-help books can be helpful, people should seek advice if they have health concerns. This follows the news this week that people are increasingly turning to self-help books says Amazon.co.uk. The online retailers predicts that the number of sales will continue to grow after GPs in Devon unveiled a scheme to prescribe patients with depression self-help books instead of pills. Amazon books' editor Fiona Buckland said: ìIt seems that many people are turning to these books as trusted companions to help them in 2005.î

Patients call for information

More than half of patients with chronic conditions in the UK are concerned that they do not know enough about their disease and its treatments to confidently manage them says a new study. The research  revealed that 49 per cent of them expressed concern that a lack of knowledge might be worsening their condition and that when patients do receive health information, 49 per cent make pro-active changes in their behaviour. Of those that do change their behaviour, 77 per cent of them report a positive impact on their health.

Diabetes guidance kit launch

A practical resource kit has been launched with a view to implementing UK diabetes guidance. National guidance on diabetes: a practical resource kit is an interactive CD Rom providing practical information and advice on how to implement the recommendations in the National Service Framework for Diabetes for England and Wales, the Scottish Diabetes Framework, and the Northern Ireland Taskforce for Diabetes Framework. Featuring a case study section, there are video comments from GPs, specialist nurses and managers who are already implementing the guidance. The kit also contains a set of questions and answers and a range of downloadable tools - including patient leaflets and protocols.

2nd September 2008

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