The first three-parent babies could be born by 2015 after the government set out new draft regulations which will allow donor DNA from a second mother to be implanted into a defective egg.
A debate is being held in Westminster about the UK becoming the first country in the world to legalise babies with three biological parents. The controversial IVF technique has never been tried before.
Scientists in Newcastle are pushing for the technique to made legal. But critics say it's completely unethical and would be a step too far for the human race.
Helen Ford reports on one woman who lost seven children to genetic illness, and is in favour of the change:
A controversial technique that could see babies born to three biological parents is being debated at Westminster.
Scientists at Newcastle University want the IVF treatment to be legalised to prevent rare genetic illnesses. But critics say the procedure would be completely unethical.
Colin Hart at The Christian Institute and Professor Doug Turnbull at Newcastle University voice the arguments against and for the treatment:
Scientists and religious groups have clashed over proposals for three-parent IVF, which are being debated in Westminster later today.
"If we're going to allow parents to chose what sort of genes their children have, that's a massive Rubicon and that's such a big Rubicon that in every other country this is not legal."
"This research is about providing women who carry a specific sort of genetic disease reproductive choice. We already have ability for some genetic diseases to select on specific embryos."
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A controversial technique that could see babies born to three biological parents is being debated at Westminster later.
Scientists at Newcastle university want the IVF treatment to be legalised to prevent rare genetic illnesses. However, critics say the procedure would be completely unethical.
Findings released by the Health and Social Care Information Centre show the numbers of children in Stockton, Middlesbrough and other parts of the region needing dental work are among the highest in the country.
Kamini Shah, a Consultant in Dental Public Health, has spoken of what Public Health England plan to do to counteract the growing issue:
It's a bold new move to try to improve the standard of food in our hospitals.
As part of a national campaign to raise the quality of meals, the government has said hospitals will have to meet set requirements to provide healthy and nutritious meals for patients.
Dan Ashby reports:
Want to see how your local hospital's food standards have rated compared to the rest of the UK?
The NHS has published an interactive map from a report on the quality of food in the nation's hospitals.
The map shows how hospitals have performed according to food indicators. NHS officials said that the food ratings systems was set up to give patients the "widest possible range of information".
The Government is enforcing new minimum standards for hospital meals after what campaigners say has been years of soggy and unhealthy dishes.
Patients will be "screened" on arrival over their nutritional needs and offered a better selection of well-cooked meals.
The Government wants to see freshly prepared and healthier meals, which is why they brought in these minimum standards.
Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Gateshead already prepares 1,400 meals a day for their patients, which is what the Government want to see more of, as well as meals like fish served twice a week and less salt in potatoes and rice.
Ian Stafford, at Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Gateshead, says they welcome the new higher standards.
Rankings of hospital care according to the quality of the food they serve will help improve the transparency of the NHS, the Health Secretary has said.
Speaking as the Department of Health launched a crackdown on hospital food, Jeremy Hunt said:
We are making the NHS more transparent, giving patients the power to compare food on wards and incentivising hospitals to raise their game.
Many hospitals are already offering excellent food to their patients and staff. But we want to know that all patients have nourishing and appetising food to help them get well faster and stay healthy, which is why we're introducing tough new mandatory standards for the first time ever.