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U.K.'s National Health Service bans fax machines

Old black and white photo of a fax machine
The U.K. thinks this is no way to run a health care system. Photo: Getty Images

Britain’s National Health Service does many things that would be unthinkable in the U.S., but this one may take the cake: It’s banning fax machines.

The big picture: NHS’ leadership has banned the purchase of new fax machines at NHS facilities, and wants to phase them out entirely by the spring of 2020, according to The Guardian. The country’s Royal College of Surgeons says there are about 8,000 fax machines still in use within the British health care system, a number it called “absurd.” Faxes still account for as much as 75% of all medical communication in the U.S., Vox reported earlier this year.

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