Newspaper headlines: 'NHS Airbnb' and 'remainer universities'

By BBC News

Image source, PA

The suggestion that the NHS could start paying people £50 a night to look after hospital patients who are recovering from surgery is the lead story for The Guardian, The Times and The Daily Mirror. Writing in the Mirror, the shadow minister for social care, Barbara Keeley, thinks the proposal is "terrifying" as there are "clear safety risks" if patients are forced to accept this "cut-price" care.

The paper agrees, arguing that the initiative is a "sticking plaster" for an NHS close to collapse, when what is needed is a national care service to operate alongside the health service.

Image source, House of Commons

Labour's suspension of the MP for Sheffield Hallam, Jared O'Mara following the emergence of racist, sexist and homophobic comments he made online more than a decade ago is widely welcomed, but several papers are critical of the time taken to reach the decision.

The Times suggests parliament "should not miss him too much" as he is the only MP elected in June not to have spoken in the Commons. While the Sun argues it is "a disgrace" that Labour bosses knew about his antics more than a month ago "but chose to do nothing".

The Reaction website questions how such a "clearly unsuitable candidate" could be selected by Labour in the first place. It says supporters of Jeremy Corbyn seized the opportunity to back him when the initial candidate was forced to rule himself out after just starting a new job.

Arguing that Mr O'Mara "is just the tip of the Corbynista iceberg", it says Labour "has become cultish, and now values loyalty to the hard left more than suitability and capability".

The lead story in the Daily Mail highlights what it describes as a "string of examples" of senior figures at universities speaking out in favour of the European Union. It believes it's a "troubling insight" into the extent of anti-Brexit bias at universities, following the row about a Conservative MP who asked professors for details of their courses on the UK's departure from the EU.

The Daily Telegraph agrees, using its editorial to urge lecturers to turn their minds to mapping out Britain's post-EU future, instead of telling their students how they think the decision is wrong.

The political editor of the Spectator, James Forsyth, believes that political meddling is putting the independence of universities at risk. He claims the political class is "remarkably unappreciative" of the fact that Britain's universities are some of the best in the world, and says "too many" MPs want to interfere in ways that would undermine the institutions.

He argues that if universities want to safeguard themselves against meddling politicians, "then the way to do that is to go fully private".

Image source, Norman Scott/National Trust Images

A number of papers highlight a study which claims red squirrels infected with leprosy may have brought the disease to medieval England along Viking trading routes.

The lead researcher has told the Daily Mail this would explain why leprosy was endemic in coastal areas of East Anglia earlier than it was in other parts of Britain. The Daily Telegraph isn't convinced, noting that we are happy to blame rats for plague, "but red squirrels have such a good press that even now it is hard to see them as bringers of zoonotic disease".

The Scottish government is expected to announce that it will allow women to take the abortion pill at home, according to the Buzzfeed website.

Current rules dictate that the drug misoprostol must be administered and taken in a registered clinical setting. A leading gynaecologist has told the website that Holyrood is set to announce a revision of the licensing of misoprostol in Scotland, describing the move as a "huge step forward".

Buzzfeed says a spokesperson for NHS Health Scotland has confirmed that an announcement on the licensing of misoprostol is "imminent".