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The Health Minister for Wales, Lesley Griffiths, has only been in the job since May this year. But she has now pledged to take the flak for the huge number of changes that are coming to the health service.
The Public Health Wales conference was the platform for her impassioned speech. She promised to improve the maternity care that is currently available for women, and also described the two stage plan that was aimed at changing and improving the NHS.
She also pointed out the gap between the rich and the poor …

Headline, NHS General News »

money for compensation

The UK is virtually the only country in Europe to decide that a new pill to combat Multiple Sclerosis (MS) simply costs too much.
The drug, fingolimod, which was given preliminary marketing approval by EU drugs regulators in January of this year, has been branded as “not a cost effective use of NHS resources” by the National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE).
Current treatment for MS – known as interferon therapy – is administered by injection, either in hospital or by the patient themselves at home.  But this new pill …

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MRSA (methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureu) cases are now at a record low – according to the latest data from the Health Protection Agency (HPA).
25 acute NHS trusts have now been free from any outbreaks of the superbug MRSA for the past twelve months.  Taking all the NHS trusts in England into account, there were less than 100 infections reported in any given month of last year.
Incidents of another superbug, Clostridium difficile (C. diff) are also down by 16 per cent from the previous year – from 2,001 to 1,681 across England’s …

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Sir Richard Thompson, the president of the Royal College of Physicians, has spoken out at the state of the NHS and its waiting lists, as they get ever longer in various parts of the country.
He said recently that “the apparent rise in waiting lists is both worrying for patients and evidence of an underlying cause – the increasing pressures on the NHS in general.”
Official data from the NHS shows that waiting lists have got longer since the new coalition government came to power last year. Sir Richard went on to …

NHS Reform News »

houses of parliament

In his speech to the NHS Confederation conference in Manchester, Andrew Lansley called on NHS managers to “regain the momentum” on restructuring the health service, following changes to the health and social care bill.
“The pause is over. It’s now time to act,” he stated.
Lansley described the listening exercise as “an unusual step”, but said the bill has been improved as a result of pause, which was carried out by the Future Forum group led by Professor Steve Field. The health secretary also said the pause had helped the government to …

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The Information Commissioner Christopher Graham has issued a stark warning over the security of patient records and data, after a range of incidents resulting in lost confidential data.
The Chief Executive of the NHS, Sir David Nicholson, has been called to a meeting with Mr Graham to focus on finding ways to eradicate the problem. Mr Graham has already stated that fines of as much as half a million pounds will be imposed on hospitals and trusts that lose patient information.
Christopher Graham has said that “the health service holds some of …

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money for compensation

Some hospital services will not receive taxpayer bail outs when faced with financial difficulties according to the Department of Health.
In their response to last weeks NHS Future Forum report on reform plans, they stated that “poor quality” departments would not be “propped up with subsidies,” anymore as they announce that competition could be important to improving services.
Currently, if an organisation is struggling financially they can receive payments from the government as a ‘bailout,’ and services that are extinguished tend to be so due to “service configurations” as oppose to being …

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NHS reforms could create the “greatest quango in the sky” unless GP’s are quick to take on the responsibility for commissioning care for their patients, according to Sir David Nicholson, Chief Executive of the NHS.
Now that the 2013 deadline for GP take over of commissioning has been relaxed, there are growing concerns that many localities will be in a continual state of planning which could affect patient care.
Sir David writes that reforms could result in the continuing “planning blight” that has affected the health service since changes were announced. “This …

Headline, NHS Reform News »

houses of parliament

The Tories have had to assure fellow party members that the diluting of changes within the NHS reform bill has not crossed the Tory red lines, despite Lib Dems claiming it a victory in their favour.
The Government is set to accept a heavily amended version of the original Health Reforms Bill but Lansley stressed that core principles remain in place.
Changes are set to include;

Ensuring Monitor, the health service regulator, does not promote competition.
The widening of membership to GP led consortium’s to ensure, “effective multi-professional involvement in the design and commissioning …

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Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg has threatened to veto plans for NHS reform unless they are altered. After their astonishing landslide in the recent elections, Nick Clegg intends to act on pleas to give the Liberal Democrats more say within government stating, “the message I’ve heard on the doorstep is people want to hear a louder Liberal Democrat voice in Government. It’s already very loud inside Government, we’ve got to make sure that people hear it outside Government.”
Clegg made clear his first battle will be over Health Secretary Andrew Lansley’s …