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Showing posts tagged with: NHS

Thousands pledge to 'do something different' for NHS

Thousands of people working across the NHS are doing something different to improve care as part of NHS Change Day.

Last year, 189,000 people took part by making a pledge online - and this year the aim is to get 500,000 pledges.

Dr Damian Rolandfounder of NHS Change Day

Pledges include a GP spending a day in a wheelchair to better understand disabled patients and a manager helping dementia patients eat their lunch.

Two doctors came up with the idea for NHS Change Day after attending an NHS leadership course.

The aim of the day is to encourage those working for the NHS - and those who use it - to make the NHS better by pledging to do something different.

Click here to read the rest of the article.

Posted by: on March 3rd, 2014 @ 11:46 AM

NHS told to streamline 'complicated' complaints process

The complaints system for the NHS in England is "hopelessly complicated" and needs an overhaul, according to the patients' watchdog.

Healthwatch England says more than 70 organisations are involved in dealing with complaints about the NHS and social care.

It wants the process to be simplified to ensure patients get more support.

NHS England says it is committed to improving how complaints are handled and is piloting a new approach.

Several inquiries have highlighted failings in the complaints systems for health and social care, and the dangers of failing to heed patients' concerns.

Now Healthwatch England's review of the complaints system - based on public responses to its survey - has discovered there are up to 75 different types of organisation involved in the process.

Initially, health and care providers - including hospitals, GP practices and care homes - or their commissioning bodies can be challenged.

Read more about this here.

Posted by: on March 20th, 2014 @ 08:37 AM

NHS fraud and error 'costing the UK £7bn a year'

Fraud is costing the NHS £5bn a year, with a further £2bn lost to errors, the former head of its anti-fraud section says.

The amount lost to fraud alone could pay for nearly 250,000 new nurses, a report seen by Panorama suggests.

The NHS must "get on with tackling the problem", said Jim Gee, co-author of the Portsmouth University study and ex-director of NHS Counter Fraud Services.

The Department of Health said it "did not recognise" the figures.

The amount estimated by Mr Gee, who led the NHS anti-fraud section for eight years, is 20 times that recorded in the government's annual fraud indicator report.

Full more details click here.

Posted by: on March 24th, 2014 @ 08:49 AM

Smoking bans cut asthma and premature births by 10%, study says

Laws banning smoking in public places have had a positive impact on child health, an international study in the Lancet suggests.

Researchers found a 10% reduction in premature births and severe childhood asthma attacks within a year of smoke-free laws being introduced.

A research team analysed 11 previous studies from North America and Europe.

The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists said smoking bans benefitted adults and children.

Click here to read the full article.

Posted by: on March 28th, 2014 @ 11:12 AM

Mental health patients forced to travel miles for care

A lack of beds is forcing mental health patients in England to seek treatment in other NHS facilities up to hundreds of miles away, BBC research has found.

The number of patients travelling to seek emergency treatment has more than doubled in two years - from 1,301 people in 2011-12 to 3,024 in 2013-14.

Earlier this year one patient was admitted to a deaf unit as no beds were available anywhere in the country.

Health minister Norman Lamb said out-of-area treatment was a "last resort".

The care and support minister added that it was "unacceptable" if patients had to travel "hundreds of miles" for treatment and said he was determined to drive up standards of care in the NHS.

To read more click here.

Posted by: on May 6th, 2014 @ 08:38 AM

NHS surgery 'age discrimination'

Age discrimination may be preventing older people from having access to vital surgery, a report suggests.

The Royal College of Surgeons and Age UK looked at surgery rates for six common procedures for English over-65s.

It found a wide variation in access to treatment depending on where people lived and a "worrying" difference between the over 65s and over 75s.

NHS England said it was committed to "ensuring older patients had equal access to treatment".

Click here to read more.

Posted by: on July 3rd, 2014 @ 09:34 AM

Leading health experts in NHS funding debate call

Leading figures from the health world are calling for a national debate on how the NHS in England is funded.

In a letter to The Times, they say challenges from an ageing population mean the system is "creaking at the seams" and cannot continue as it is.

Signatories include the heads of the Royal College of Physicians and Royal College of Nursing.

The BBC's health editor says the group feels future options may include higher taxes or charges for some treatment.

Without action an extra £30bn will be needed by 2020 to fund the NHS at current levels, their letter adds.

They are asking for a cross-party, independent conversation on the way forward for the "scope, provision and funding of health and social care".

To read the full article please click here.

Posted by: on July 7th, 2014 @ 09:15 AM

NHS to give patients cash to purchase their own healthcare

Billions of pounds of health service and town hall budgets are to be given to the most vulnerable patients to purchase health and social care services in the community, under plans unveiled by the NHS's new head.

The elderly, disabled children and those with serious mental illness or learning disabilities will from next April be offered individual pots of money to spend as they wish on health and social care services such as carers, physiotherapists and psychotherapy sessions.

Simon Stevens, NHS England's chief executive, said that it would help keep people out of hospital and ultimately save money, the Guardianreported.

Some patients' budgets will range from as little as a few hundred pounds, though most are likely to get more than £1,000, with a small number who have very complex needs receiving substantially more than that.

Patients receiving the funds would still get free GP and hospital care. Recipients will not automatically receive cash payments into their bank accounts but will control the budget, which will be provided after a care plan is agreed with their doctors.

To read the full article please click here.


Posted by: on July 10th, 2014 @ 10:31 AM

Build homes for elderly on NHS land, says MP

Surplus NHS land should be used to build dedicated housing for older people, a former care minister says.

Lib Dem MP Paul Burstow - who led a review of residential care for the think tank Demos - said retirement villages and adapted flats were needed as well as traditional care homes.

The review also suggested planning rules could be relaxed and discounted prices offered to encourage investment.

In return, care providers could be asked to contribute to council care.

This could be done by setting quotas for the proportion of the new complexes set aside for state-funded care.

The model mirrors the Section 106 laws currently used to ensure property developers build affordable housing.

About 450,000 people in England live in residential care homes, but the numbers living in adapted housing known as extra care apartments or retirement complexes are much smaller.

To read the full article, please click here.

Posted by: on September 3rd, 2014 @ 08:56 AM

End unfair split between NHS and council care, review says

A tale of two systems

NHSSocial care

Services: Hospitals, GPs, mental health care and ambulance crews

Services: Care homes, domiciliary care at home and day centres

Budget: £111bn (2013-14)

Budget: £17bn (2013-14)

Structure: Run by NHS England and 211 GP-led clinical commissioning groups

Structure: Overseen by 152 councils, but many services are provided by private care firms

Cost: Free at the point of need, but charges made for dentistry and prescriptions

Cost: Only those with assets under £23,250 get help from the state. The rest have to pay all their costs

Numbers helped: One million every 36 hours

Numbers helped: 1.3 million a year get some contribution to care

To read the full article please click here.

Posted by: on September 4th, 2014 @ 11:06 AM

Dementia patients 'face unfair care tax'

Dementia patients in the UK face a "care tax" because they are left to sort out much of the care they need themselves, experts say.

The Alzheimer's Society found that on average, the equivalent of £32,242 a year was spent on care per patient.

But the researchers said on average only a third - £10,784 - came from NHS or council funds, leaving a shortfall.

The charity said it was unfair as those with cancer or heart problems got their care free on the NHS.

To read the full article please click here.

Posted by: on September 10th, 2014 @ 08:45 AM

'Cuts forcing English councils to limit social care'

Almost 90% of councils in England no longer offer social care to people whose needs are ranked low to moderate, the Association of Directors of Adult Social Services (Adass) has said.

The group is warning cuts are making the care system "unsustainable".

The government says councils have been given an extra £1.1bn to help protect social care this year.

But charities say hundreds of thousands of people are struggling without help.

When someone applies for social care, their needs are determined as either critical, substantial, moderate or low.

In recent years the number of councils able to help those at the lower end of the scale has gone down as they struggle to balance their budgets.

To read more about this, please click here.

Posted by: on September 15th, 2014 @ 08:42 AM

Is it time for a mental health waiting target?

Waiting time targets have become synonymous with the NHS in England. They apply to everything from A&E units and ambulance calls outs to routine surgery and cancer treatment.

But it's not just an English phenomenon. Other countries in the UK have introduced their own.

The exception is mental health. It should come as no surprise - mental health care is often said to be the poor cousin of the NHS family. Figures show that the condition gets 11% of the budget, but accounts for 28% of the disease burden.

The result is that many people go without help. An estimated three quarters of people with a mental illness receive no treatment. For physical disorders, the rate is nearer a quarter.

To read the full article click here.

Posted by: on September 17th, 2014 @ 08:44 AM

NHS whistleblowing 'problems persist'

Whistleblowers still face real problems in speaking out in the health service - despite the push to create a more open culture, campaigners say.

Promoting whistleblowing was a key recommendation of the public inquiry into the Stafford Hospital scandal.

A number of steps have since been taken in England, but Patients First warned that a "culture of fear" still existed.

It has produced a dossier of 70 cases, highlighting problems like bullying and mismanagement of complaints.

The document is being handed in as part of Patients First's submission to an independent review of whistleblowing, which was set up by the Department of Health in England and is being led by Sir Robert Francis, who was in charge of the Stafford public inquiry.

To read the full article please click here

Posted by: on September 22nd, 2014 @ 08:53 AM

Heart disease warning factors 'missed by many adults'

While a third of people are worried about getting dementia or cancer, only 2% are afraid of coronary heart disease, a survey by the British Heart Foundation has found.

And one in ten adults confessed to not knowing how to look after their hearts.

Coronary heart disease (CHD) is responsible for about 74,000 deaths in the UK each year.

About one in five men and one in eight women die from the condition.

To read the full article please click here.

Posted by: on September 29th, 2014 @ 09:43 AM
Tagged with: health healthcare NHS

Cancer gene test 'would save lives'

Genetic screening of tumours would save lives and would be cost-effective for the NHS, a new study has confirmed.

Lynch syndrome raises the risk of developing cancer, particularly bowel cancer and womb and ovarian cancers.

Teenager Stephen Sutton, who raised millions of pounds for cancer research, had a family history of the syndrome.

"This is a way of improving the health of people with Lynch syndrome who currently don't know they have it," said Dr Tristan Snowsill of the Medical School - University of Exeter.

To read the full article click here.

Posted by: on October 1st, 2014 @ 09:19 AM

NHS and social care 'at breaking point', medics and charities warn

The NHS and social care services are "at breaking point", a group of leading medical groups and charities have said.

Writing in the Independent, they said the NHS had been through its "longest and most damaging budget squeeze" ever.

The letter says patient care and staff morale have suffered, adding: "Things cannot go on like this."

It is addressed to the leaders of the Conservatives, Labour and the Liberal Democrats - all three parties have made major NHS pledges in recent days.

Leading figures from the British Medical Association, the Royal College of Nursing, the Royal College of Midwives, the Alzheimer's Society, the Teenage Cancer Trust and the Faculty of Public Health are among those who have signed the letter.

To read the full article, please click here.

Posted by: on October 6th, 2014 @ 08:59 AM

NHS needs extra cash and overhaul, say health bosses

Drastic changes to services and extra money is needed if the NHS in England is not to suffer, health bosses say.

A five-year plan for the NHS - unveiled by six national bodies - once again highlighted that an annual £30bn shortfall would open up by 2020.

It said changes, such as GP practices offering hospital services, would help to plug a large chunk of the gap.

But health chiefs said the NHS would still need above inflation rises of 1.5% over the coming years.

That works out at an extra £8bn a year above inflation by 2020. The current budget stands at £100bn a year.

But the plan - called the NHS Forward View - said this would only be enough if the health service became more efficient.

To achieve this, the plan called for a rethink about the way services were delivered.

To read more click here.

Posted by: on October 23rd, 2014 @ 10:59 AM

More wonderful feedback for Routes Healthcare!

"Dear Routes - I phoned you and am emailing you to give praise where it is certainly due to the Routes Healthcare lady who supported Judith throughout the session.  In my experience, I see many support workers with learners in the classroom and in my opinion, the Routes Healthcare lady was one of the exceptional ones you don’t come across very often and a credit to your organisation.  She listened to Judith constantly, assisted her with prompts when necessary, encouraged her to stretch herself and do more work and all this in an appropriate tone and manner which was lovely to observe.  The Routes Healthcare lady made the experience for Judith worthwhile and meaningful and I commend her for her skills and caring attitude.

I hope she attends with Judith again because it was obvious that the partnership worked very well."

- Tutor at NHS Mental Health Trust

Posted by: on November 11st, 2014 @ 2:49 PM

Huddles 'help children's hospital care'

It's good to talk, we're always told. And now child health expert Dr Peter Lachman says "huddles" - informal meetings of hospital staff - are a simple way of improving children's hospital care.

A lot can be said for good communication - it's a simple art which if done properly can build and maintain strong relationships, improve efficiency and most of all, improve outcomes.

Done badly, it can cause uncertainty and confusion.

In healthcare, good communication is essential if we are to ensure best practice and offer patients, regardless of postcode, access to safe, high quality care at the earliest opportunity.

To read more please click here.

Posted by: on December 2nd, 2014 @ 09:34 AM

NHS choices health news predictions for 2015!

A few days ago we looked at The Guardian’s health news predictions for 2014 to see how accurate, or not, they turned out to be. Of course, it's easy to criticise the work of others (which is pretty much Behind the Headlines’ raison d'être). But we are brave enough to put our money where our mouth is; so here are our own health and medical news predictions for 2015.

To read the predictions click here.

Posted by: on January 5th, 2015 @ 1:02 PM
Tagged with: Great Britain NHS

NHS plan to achieve earlier cancer diagnosis and save lives

Patients are to be given the option to refer themselves for cancer tests, as part of an NHS England bid to diagnose an extra 10% of people early.

It said it would start testing new ways of speeding up diagnosis, including offering patients the option to book appointments directly with a hospital or testing unit ahead of seeing a GP.

The body will also fund further trials of a pioneering form of radiotherapy.

Currently, around 25% of cancer diagnoses are made too late.

The plans are part of a drive to improve cancer survival rates in England, which are below the European average, especially for people over 75.

To read more about this please click here.

Posted by: on January 12nd, 2015 @ 09:49 AM

NHS England issues cold weather alert

NHS England has issued a cold weather alert for the next seven days, warning the public that services could be disrupted and asking vulnerable patients to take extra care.

On its website it says there is a 70% probability of severe cold weather and icy conditions between Monday and Sunday in some regions.

Cold weather increases the risk of heart attacks, strokes and flu.

People can also slip and injure themselves in the ice and snow.

Prolonged periods of cold weather can be dangerous, especially for the very young, very old or those with chronic diseases.

The Met Office says on its website: "After a mild start to Monday colder conditions will gradually spread southeastwards across England today and overnight. Showers will follow, these becoming wintry, even to lower levels at times overnight and also through Tuesday.

"At low levels any snowfall accumulations will be slight, compared to more significant accumulations over higher ground. Icy stretches are also likely to form on untreated surfaces from Monday night, especially across northern England.

"The colder conditions with wintry showers will persist through to Sunday, apart for a milder period Wednesday night when very wet and very windy conditions move east across England. There is some uncertainty for the weekend, but less cold conditions may spread to southern parts for Saturday and Sunday."

To read the full article click here.

Posted by: on January 13th, 2015 @ 08:59 AM
Tagged with: Common Cold NHS

NHS satisfaction 'risen significantly'

Public satisfaction with the NHS has "risen significantly", according to analysis of the influential British Social Attitudes survey.

Of nearly 2,000 people surveyed, 65% were "very" or "quite" satisfied with the NHS.

It is the second highest recorded level, and outright "dissatisfaction" is at an all-time low of 15%.

A BBC/Populus poll this week suggested the NHS was the most important issue ahead of the general election, in May.

The British Social Attitudes survey, conducted by NatCen Social Research, took place in the autumn, well before the widely reported problems in A&E this winter.

It showed public satisfaction at 65% compared with 60% in 2013.

The analysis of the data, by the King's Fund health think tank, showed:

  • GPs had the highest level of satisfaction, although the figure of 71% is the lowest recorded
  • Satisfaction in A&E stood at 58% and at 69% in out-patient services
  • With dentists the figure was 54%
  • Meanwhile, just 31% were happy with social care services


To read the full article please click here.

Posted by: on January 30th, 2015 @ 11:18 AM

Mental health budgets 'still being cut despite pledge'

Despite government assurances they would be funded on a par with physical healthcare, mental health trusts in England are still having their budgets cut, figures suggest.

Posted by: Sharon Tither on October 14th, 2016 @ 7:36 PM

Eat hot meals to beat winter cold - NHS

Eating hot meals and keeping active are effective ways for the over-65s and those with health issues to cope with winter, say public health bodies.

Posted by: Sharon Tither on November 8th, 2016 @ 8:03 PM
Tagged with: cold flu health NHS winter

NHS £8bn budget plan 'not enough', say hospital bosses

Patients in England will see rising waiting times, rationing and cuts in the number of staff unless the NHS gets more money, health bosses say.

Posted by: Sharon Tither on November 20th, 2016 @ 7:50 PM

Charity calls for NHS staff to have mandatory policies to identify carers

It should be compulsory for NHS staff to identify and support carers, Carers UK has said in a new report highlighting the risks to carers who do not self-identify as such.

Posted by: Sharon Tither on November 28th, 2016 @ 8:07 PM
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