A&E, TIME person of the year, marriage equality
A&E waits over four hours double; TIME names the "silence-breakers" as person of the year; Marriage equality becomes legal in Australia (Photos: Getty Images)

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Today's headlines 07/12

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By Kuba Shand-Baptiste on

Number of patients waiting more than four hours for A&E doubles

More than three million people who required accident and emergency services had to wait for over four hours in the past year – a 120 per cent increase since 2012-2013. According to the BBC, Northern Ireland saw the worst performance with only 75 per cent of A&E patients seen within four hours in the year 2016-17. England, on the other hand, had a 155% increase – the largest increase in the UK – in the amount of people waiting longer than four hours.
BBC News

Donald Trump sparks protests around the world over Israel capital stance

President Trump’s decision to recognise Jerusalem as the capital of Israel and move the US embassy to the city has been met with worldwide criticism from Arabs, world leaders and the United Nations alike. In response to the news, UN secretary-general António Guterres said that he had “consistently spoken out against any unilateral measures that would jeopardize the prospect of peace for Israelis and Palestinians.” Others also chimed in to highlight the political repercussions of supporting one state over the other, with Theresa May calling Trump’s position on the matter unhelpful where sustaining “peace in the region” was concerned.  
Reuters

Silence-breakers named as TIME person of the year

Time magazine has named the “silence-breakers” – women and men who came forward to expose perpetrators of sexual violence – as its 2017 person of the year. Among the women honoured are #MeToo movement founder, Tarana Burke; actor Alyssa Milano, and other survivors including employees who filed suits against New York City’s Plaza Hotel for failing to act on sexual assault. The article features in-depth profiles of a number of accusers who came forward publicly, as well as those who wish to remain anonymous. Time’s editor-in-chief called the #MeToo movement the “fastest-moving social change we’ve seen in decades”.

Time

Vaginal mesh regulation deemed inadequate

Medical experts have called the regulation of vaginal mesh products “inadequate” in a British Medical Journal report. The experts found that of 61 devices that had received marketing clearance, all had been modelled on two existing products that had received approval in 1985 and 1996, respectively, while no clinical trial data was uncovered for any of the devices. Pushing for the mandatory use of clinical trials for gaining “marketing authorisation of implantable devices”, the authors of the report said: “Changes in design should have alerted regulators to important differences in the technological characteristics of the mesh that should have negated the use of equivalence."
Sky News

Australia legalises same-sex marriage

Australia has passed a historic cross-party bill legislating marriage equality. The bill passed in the house of representatives today, with fewer than five MPs voting "no" to pass the legislation. MPs gave a standing ovation on the announcement of the passing of marriage equality, with some breaking out into song. Australian prime minister Malcolm Turnbull said of the news: “We’ve voted today for equality, for love, it’s time for more marriages, more commitment, more love, more respect.”

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A&E waits over four hours double; TIME names the "silence-breakers" as person of the year; Marriage equality becomes legal in Australia (Photos: Getty Images)
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