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Welfare Reform on the Web (April 2004): National Health Service - Primary and Community Care

ASSISTANTS REQUIRED

A. Dix

Health Service Journal Vol. 114, Mar. 11th, 2004, p.26-27

The use of US-trained physician assistants is addressing a GP shortage in the West Midlands and is being extended to emergency care. Physician assistants are trained in general and first-contact medicine and undergo rigorous, regular re-certification. Birmingham University is evaluating the scheme with a view to UK-based training and accreditation.

BARRIERS TO UNDERSTANDING

N. Valios

Community Care, Mar. 4th-10th 2004, p.30-31

Deaf people face barriers in accessing healthcare including a shortage of sign language interpreters, lack of staff awareness, and low use of technology such as visual alert displays and loop systems.

CAN PCTS TAKE THE WEIGHT OF WANLESS?

N. Smith

Primary Care Report, vol.6, no.4, Mar.11th 2004, p.8-9

The Wanless report on improving the health of the nation recommends that local authorities and primary care trusts should work together to achieve local health promotion targets within national parameters and should be judged on their results. Article reports professionals' reactions.

LOCAL AUTHORITY SCRUTINY OF HEALTH: MAKING THE VIEWS OF THE COMMUNITY COUNT?

A.J. Coleman and C. Glendinning

Health Expectations, Vol. 7, 2004, p.29-39

The article reports results of a postal survey of all social service authorities in England (i.e. all those with lead responsibility for health scrutiny) conducted in 2002. It found that progress was being made in preparations for implementation of the new policy in 2003, and many authorities had already carried out pilot scrutiny exercises of local health provision. The survey highlighted the different approaches being taken to implementation of health scrutiny and the importance of support, in terms of resources, guidance and training, for overview and scrutiny to be successful.

MANAGING POOR PERFORMANCE IN PRIMARY CARE

J.I. Baeza

British Journal of Health Care Management, Vol. 10, 2004, p.78-81

Historically it has proven difficult to manage poor performance in primary care. The implementation of clinical governance provides a framework within which primary care organisations can potentially tackle this issue more effectively.

MENTAL HEALTH: HOW GLOBAL LESSONS CAN STIMULATE LOCAL SOLUTIONS

G. Meads and A. Wild

Primary Care Report, Vol. 6, Issue 3, 2004, p.14-16

Although countries such as Italy and Finland have effectively combined health and social services through primary care organisations, most, including the UK, are still struggling to do so. The article examines the factors which make integration work, summarising them in a simple formula. It concludes by looking at how this can be put into practice in the UK.

MORE THAN TECHNOLOGY AND ACCESS: PRIMARY CARE PATIENTS' VIEWS ON THE USE AND NON-USE OF HEALTH INFORMATION IN THE INTERNET AGE

A. Rogers and N. Mead

Health and Social Care in the Community, Vol. 12, 2004, p.102-110

The article explores the ways in which people use and perceive the utility of Internet information for managing their health and engaging with the health service system. Data was retrieved from two sets of interviews, the first with people who had used a free primary-care based Internet service and the second with selected respondents who had taken part in a survey of patient attitudes to using the Internet for health information. Results show that patients who avoid using the Internet to find health information do so because they cannot see the use or relevance of such information for managing their condition, and thus facilitating access to the Internet is not an end in itself.

NEW LAW 'PRICES YOUNG GPS OUT O FAMILY PRACTICE'

S. Lister

The Times, March 26th 2004, p.6

Young doctors will be forced out of family medicine under a new law that will inflate the cost of starting up as a GP, doctors' leaders said yesterday. Under the new legislation, a 56-year-old ban on the sale of "goodwill" in the NHS is to be done away with, giving investors the chance to trade on the worth of practice on top if its hard assets, such as buildings and equipment. The British Medical Association condemned the move which it said would favour wealthy commercial organisations over doctors wanting to buy into a practice.

PCTS IN TEES VALLEY WILL ALLOW MASS GP OPT-OUT

N. Smith

Primary Care Report, Vol. 6, Issue 3, 2004, p.1

Five primary care trusts in Tees Valley have teamed up with a deputising service to take over out-of-hours care for patients from April 1st. Almost 100% of GPs are expected to opt out of providing 24-hour cover and the PCTs hope that the initiative will boost GP retention and recruitment as well as improving out-of-hours care.

PCT RECRUITMENT CRISIS THREATENS PACE OF REFORMS

M. Pownall

Primary Care Report, Vol. 6, Issue 3, 2004, p.3

Primary care trusts are struggling to recruit not only GPs and nurses but also managers and financial staff, blocking delivery of key national targets.

QUALITY IN THE NEW GP CONTRACT: UNDERSTANDING, DESIGNING, PLANNING, ACHIEVING

D. Spooner

Oxford: Radcliffe, 2004

This book is targeted at those involved in the implementation of the new GMS contract (GPs, practice managers and practice nurses) and the modernisation of primary care. It reviews the issues around the relationship of clinical governance to quality in the new contract.

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