Victoria Macdonald on Health and Social Care

Our health and social care correspondent analyses a new-look NHS and how changes to the health service affect you.

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August 22, 2014 2 Comments

Why sorry can be the hardest word for doctors

Sorry. It is such a hard word to say. I know because I have a five-year-old and whenever I ask her to apologise for some misdemeanour the most I generally get is a muttered, begrudging apology with body language that says in reality, “No, I’m bloody not sorry but I know if I don’t say it I may get in bigger trouble.”

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August 21, 2014 4 Comments

Hep C drug that can cure – but is it too expensive?

There are some phone calls which brighten up your day. I have just had one of those. It was from Nils Nordal and he was phoning from his hospital bed in the Royal Free, north London.

July 24, 2014 No Comments

To end Aids, we must help the vulnerable, not arrest them

There is talk at Melbourne’s International Aids Conference of ending Aids by 2030. But this requires the political will to help drug users and sex workers, rather than criminalising them.

July 23, 2014 No Comments

HIV successes under threat from anti-gay crackdowns

There are fears that the fight against HIV is in danger as increasing numbers of countries introduce anti-gay laws. Health and Social Care Correspondent Victoria Macdonald reports from

July 22, 2014 1 Comment

A small but important step in the battle against HIV

Kick and kill is a rather brutal phrase for a scientific endeavour but it precisely describes attempts to seek out HIV and then destroy it.

July 19, 2014 2 Comments

HIV cure search – there’s now a feeling it WILL happen rather than it MIGHT happen

There was a time when the word ‘cure’ was never used in relation to HIV. It was thought to be too elusive, too unachievable. But something changed in the past decade.

MH17: ‘The extent of our loss is hard to comprehend’

The president of the International Aids Society delivered a heartfelt statement on the loss of six delegates in the destruction of Flight MH17, writes Victoria Macdonald.

July 18, 2014 2 Comments

MH17 senseless violence robs us of finest minds on HIV

At Melbourne Airport, there’s a welcome desk for delegates for the International Aids Conference. It is heartbreaking to know some will never arrive.

July 15, 2014 4 Comments

Why I feel a bit sorry for Andrew Lansley…

It’s not often that I feel sorry for a politician. But today I do feel a wee bit sorry for former Health Secretary Andrew Lansley, whose dreams of being EU commissioner have been crushed.

July 10, 2014 2 Comments

After years of austerity, NHS ‘could experience a funding crisis’

The clamour is growing for something to be done about the NHS – through extra taxes, paying to see your GP, reconfiguring services, better use of technologies, more care in the community.

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