Health Service Journal, Vol. 114, June 3rd 2004, p.28-29
There is urgent need for reform in the care of acutely ill medical patients. Problems are being compounded by rising admissions, the reduction in junior doctors' hours and changes in training. The Royal College of Physicians is calling for care to be delivered in acute medical or assessment units by dedicated teams specialising in acute care.
Health Service Journal, Vol. 114, July 1st 2004, p.30-31
The NHS needs more incentives to take sustainable development to heart. Achievements by trusts are largely due to personal commitment and are not systematic. A centrally backed programme of sustainable development could save money and would benefit staff, patients and visitors.
C. Grace and B. Harris
Public Finance, May 21st-27th 2004, p.22-23
The NHS in Wales is performing poorly compared to England. This is due to inadequate primary care, ineffective demand management, and operational inefficiencies within the hospital sector. The article goes on to outline the steps needed to tackle these problems.
The Daily Telegraph, June 29th 2004, p.8
The health service stands accused of shameful exploitation for poaching doctors from overseas because it failed to produce enough of its own. James Johnson, the chairman of the council of the British Medical Association, said Britain still did not have enough doctors despite the 32,000 extra appointments since 1997.
The Times, June 28th 2004, p.2
Doctor's careers are being blighted by discrimination on grounds of race, gender, disability and sexual orientation, a report from the British Medical Association has found. The report, based on statistics and interviews with doctors, suggests that, despite NHS claims that it is an equal opportunity employer, 70 per cent of consultants are white, while 60 per cent of those on staff grades - those denied access to the consultant ladder - have qualifications from outside Britain.
K. Hoque, S. Davis and M. Humphreys
Public Administration, Vol. 82, 2004, p.355-375
The government hopes to encourage improved performance in NHS Trusts by promising "earned autonomy" for those attaining 3-star status. The article argues that this can only be achieved if Trust managers view such freedom both as desirable and realistic. Through a case study of the senior management team at the Delta Trust, a medium sized NHS hospital, it evaluates the extent to which senior management perceive themselves as autonomous and the factors that are likely to restrict the ability of the Trust to be able to operate more freely. These factors include the power and influence of medical professionals, the extent to which clinician managers have been inculcated with managerialist values, clinician managers' management skills and their commitment to the management role, and the extent to which Trust-level managers view autonomy as a desirable outcome. Results show that autonomy was frequently restricted by centrally dictated targets. Lack of managerial skills and conflicting professional interests also restricted the Trust's potential to operate more autonomously and few managers believed that greater freedom would allow services to be delivered more effectively. The article concludes that if the government's strategy is to be achieved, it must develop a greater appreciation of the challenges faced by senior Trust managers and the factors that restrict the ability of Trusts to operate more autonomously.
Health Service Journal, Vol. 114, July 1st 2004, p.16-18
Some of the factors which influence patient satisfaction are outside of the control of the NHS. These include population age, with older people being less demanding, and ethnic diversity, with homogeneous populations being easier to please. If their customer base is demanding, even efficient hospitals can score low on patient satisfaction.
London: Department of Health, 2004
This protocol is intended to help the three agencies:
J. Sherman and D. Charter
The Guardian, June 18th 2004, p.1
The Government is to fight the general election pledging to cut the time that people wait from seeing their GP to getting hospital treatment from a maximum of 13 months to 18 weeks by 2008.
N. Edwards (Ed.)
Health Service Journal, Vol. 114, June 24th 2004, p.47-54
The article looks at clinical negligence litigation, the pitfalls of employing staff from the expanded European Union, parental consent to the medical treatment of children and the correct way to handle staff stress.
Health Service Journal, Vol. 114, June 10th 2004, p.24-25
A report of an interview with Liberal Democrat health spokesman Paul Burstow, in which he calls for responsibility for health service commissioning to be transferred to local authorities. He argues that the Department of Health should focus on the task of improving public health. He also calls for the prohibition of smoking in public and the abolition of foundation trusts.
Health Service Journal, Vol.114, June 17th 2004, p.32-33
Domestic violence is a major public health problem but the NHS, particularly GPs has a poor reputation for dealing with it. There is a lack of evidence about what approaches work in the health service context. Screening programmes modestly increase disclosure of abuse, but few studies measure other outcomes. Healthcare professionals need to be alert to the possibility of domestic violence and trained in how to deal with it.
Health Service Journal, Vol. 114, June 3rd 2004, p.24-25
Report of an interview with people's peer Lord Adebowale in which he argues that statutory services are failing the most deprived communities. He calls for the state to commission bespoke services tailored to the needs of each community or estate from the voluntary sector.
P. Gray and S. Haywood-Giles
Health Service Journal, Vol. 114, June 24th 2004, p.32-33
The article shows how physiotherapy can offer a practical alternative to hospital-based orthopaedic treatment. Waiting times for orthopaedic surgery can be cut by reducing the number of unnecessary referrals. Physiotherapy-led services can also extend patient choice and reduce GP workload.
Department of Health
London: TSO, 2004, (Cm 6268)
The document set outs government plans for:
The Guardian, June 1st 2004, p.5
The Department of Health used bully-boy tactics to force local NHS trusts
to sign contracts with foreign healthcare corporations for treatment centres they did not need, according to the chairman of a primary care trust who lost his job for resisting the temptation.
Health Service Journal, Vol. 114, June 17th 2004, p.16-17
The new Healthcare Commission will be reviewing progress in reducing health inequalities. In its first year it will:
Financial Times June 11th 2004, p.18
Editorial congratulates the government on improving the patients' lot in both public and private sectors. By introducing overseas providers to run treatment centres for National Health Service patients, the paper believes the government has, at a stroke, transformed a significant chunk of the country's health care.
(See also The Times, June 11th 2004, p.4)
Workforce Directorate, Department of Health
London: Department of Health Publications, 2004
The document outlines the key equality and diversity challenges facing the medical workforce over the next five years, highlights good practice where it exists and seeks views from stakeholders on how best to tackle these issues. It focuses on improving access to medical education, removing career barriers and establishing open and equitable disciplinary systems.
National Audit Office
London: TSO, 2004 (House of Commons papers, session 2003/04: HC 364)
The paper finds that cancer survival and mortality rates are improving in England despite increasing incidence of cancer. Good practice is being introduced to build further on improvements in outcomes realised in the 1990s, but progress varies by cancer and locality.
The Independent, June 22nd 2004, p. 18
The Conservatives will today promise a bonfire of up to 700 NHS targets as they outline radical proposals aimed at giving more power to individual hospitals. Andrew Lansley, the shadow Health Secretary, will pledge to scrap all government central health targets, instead arguing that the power of patient choice will drive up health standards.
[Department of Health, 2004]
The report finds that:
Health Service Journal, Vol. 114, June 24th 2004, p.38-39
The advent of patient choice means that NHS bodies will have to pay more attention to reputation management and public relations using similar techniques to those employed by supermarkets such as Asda.