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Jersey spend £18m on free prescriptions

Jersey's healthcare system funded more than £18m worth of free prescriptions last year.

Social security spent £18.8m on 1.9 million prescriptions in 2014.

Earlier this year the Social Security Minister Susi Pinel said free prescription charges were under review as part of possible cutbacks.

The figures were tweeted by the States of Jersey with the 'hashtag' #understandthespend.

Jersey surgeon: opt-out donor system not sole answer

Neil MacLachlan, a surgeon at Jersey General Hospital, says introducing an opt-out organ donor system is not the sole answer for the Channel Islands.

It comes as Wales became the first UK country to bring in the system today.

Islanders on the organ donation register

Mr MacLachlan says that raising public awareness and encouraging people to talk to their families about accepting organ donation, to make it normal practice, would also help the cause.

He explained that some islanders may be concerned about the opt-out scheme, but the current opt-in system makes donating an organ a 'gift' that can help grieving families.

He added that if it becomes a States controlled system, it might take away from that.


Simpson and England pull out of World Team Championships

England's Chris Simpson playing during the AJ Bell World Squash Championships

England have joined a number of other nations in pulling out of the World Squash Team Championships in Egypt amid security concerns.

It comes after France, Germany, Finland, Canada and the USA have also decided to withdraw.

It means Guernsey's Chris Simpson, who had been picked by England, will not make his debut in the competition.

Following the release of security plans for the event and subsequently a comprehensive report from independent security advisers, we have concluded that there is an inherent risk that has not been mitigated to an acceptable level.

We are extremely disappointed to be withdrawing, but the safety of our players and support staff remains our only priority and, at this time, we have real concerns.

– Keir Worth, England Squash CEO

Jersey FA: New Muratti sponsorship is a life saver

Hepburns Insurance become official sponsors of the Muratti

The President of the Jersey Football Association has told ITV News securing a new sponsor for the Muratti is a "life saver" for the competition.

Hepburns Insurance have signed up for the next three years.

Phil Austin said, with costs increasing every year, it is becoming increasingly difficult to make the Muratti financially viable so the new deal is vital.

We're finding now, to keep the Muratti going, it's become very, very expensive. The travel between the islands is very, very expensive and certainly the finances of all three football associations - Jersey, Guernsey, Alderney - was stretched to the limit last year so to get a sponsor come in, like Hepburns have, is a life saver for this competition.

– Phil Austin, President Jersey Football Association

The sponsorship will incorporate the 100th Muratti which takes place in Jersey next year.


Deputy Anne Pryke tells care inquiry Children's Services structure was 'woolly'

Deputy Anne Pryke

Deputy Anne Pryke was quizzed on her involvement in children’s services during her tenure and the state of child care facilities in the island, by the Jersey Care Inquiry today.

The Deputy said ‘The buildings themselves were in poor states but nothing told her otherwise that children in care weren’t getting the best possible service.’

When speaking about the structure of Children’s Services she said ‘I couldn’t grasp it, it was very woolly.’

The panel asked about measures put in place following the Williamson report into children’s care and recommendations to implement a Children’s Minister.

Deputy Pryke spoke of her opposition to the introduction of specific Children’s Minister, but would rather an Assistant Minister be put in place who would have a focus on the welfare of children.

Prior to becoming a politician she has worked in care, at Jersey Hospice and was later involved in working on the forerunner of the Yes project – drop in centre and support.

Chief Minister: Jersey will NOT take refugees

Chief Minister Ian Gorst

Jersey's Chief Minister has said the island will not take in any Syrian refugees.

Senator Ian Gorst explained that Jersey could pass a law to allow refugees to come to the island, but it would create a 'risk' meaning other refugees could request shelter here as well.

He made the Statement during the States assembly this morning.

Senator Gorst said he welcomes the need to make a 'valuable contribution' to the issue and pointed out that Jersey has already provided £1m to aid agencies.

Cash grants are currently being provided and warm clothing is being supplied to those in need.

The decision not to let refugees into Jersey comes after the States liaised with the UK Home Office.

New Assistant Treasury Minister

New Assistant Treasury and Resources Minister John Refault

Constable John Refault has been appointed Assistant Minister for Treasury and Resources .

He will serve alongside the current Assistant Minister Deputy Eddie Noel.

The Treasury and Resources Minister, Senator Alan Maclean, said the new appointment will work well with Constable Refault's existing role of Assistant Minister for Health and Social Services while the departments work together on the new hospital.

His (Constable Refault's) broad-based abilities mean that I have no hesitation in choosing him to be an Assistant Minister and I am delighted he has accepted my invitation to join us at this critical time.

– Senator Maclean, Treasury and Resources Minister

Constable Refault describes the move back to a dual Minister as 'challenging' but says it will give him an opportunity to use more of his experience and knowledge.

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