Bowel cancer deaths drop by a third in 20 years

The rate of people dying from bowel cancer in the UK has plummeted by more than 30 per cent in the last 20 years | Cancer Research UK 

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Image source: CRUK 

Bowel cancer was responsible for 38 deaths per 100,000 people in 1995, falling to 26 deaths per 100,000 people by 2015. The drop in rates, taking into account changing population figures, equates to a decrease in bowel cancer deaths from 17,600 in 1995 to 15,800 in 2015.

Experts believe better treatment lies behind the dramatic drop in deaths. Improved public awareness among both patients and doctors, the bowel screening programme, may also be playing a part.

Read the full blog post here

Next stage of childhood obesity plan

Public Health England (PHE) announces plans to consider the evidence, set guidelines and closely monitor progress on calorie reduction.

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One year on from the publication of the childhood obesity plan, Public Health England has announced it will consider the evidence on children’s calorie consumption and set the ambition for the calorie reduction programme to remove excess calories from the foods children consume the most.  Ready meals, pizzas, burgers, savoury snacks and sandwiches are the kinds of foods likely to be included in the programme.

In addition, the Department of Health has announced £5 million of funding for a new Obesity Policy Research Unit to provide resources for long term research into childhood obesity.  Also, the Obesity Health Alliance has published a report card assessing progress during the first year of the childhood obesity plan.

 

Delayed transfers of care

The rise of delayed transfers of care | NHS Providers

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Delayed transfers of care, where patients are ready to go home or be transferred to another setting but are unable to do so, are widely recognised as one of the most significant pressures and risks in the NHS. They are bad for both patients, as they might lead to longer stays than is necessary, and for NHS trusts, as they reduce capacity available across the system to admit, move or discharge patients.

This NHS Providers briefing sets out analysis of what is happening on the ground, and where the increases in delayed transfers of care are occurring.

View the briefing here

Mental health commissioning

Progress through partnership: involvement of people with lived experience of mental illness in CCG commissioning | Rethink Mental Health Illness

This report summarises responses from a Freedom of Information request to identify the extent to which a co-production approach has so far been used or intended to be used by CCGs in mental health commissioning. It indicates that 15% of CCGs who responded had used a co-production approach at least once in mental health commissioning.

The report includes examples of CCGs involving people in the design of services and makes recommendations to both NHS England and CCGs.

Full report available here

Variation in access to healthcare

The Medical Technology Group has published The north–south NHS divide: how where you are not what you need dictates your care.

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Image source: http://www.mtg.org.uk

This report examines CCG indicators to find how effective CCGs are at giving patients access to medical technology.  Providing each CCG with a grading based on how they scored in comparison to other CCGs, the report finds wide variation in access between the north and south of England and argues that CCG performance against access indicators should be clearer to patients.

Additional link: The Medical Technology Group press release

Bridging The Health Care Gap Through Telehealth

This case study looks at two telehealth models in Mexico and the U.S. targeting low- to middle-income parts of the population | Commonwealth Fund

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In many developing nations, the public health system is unable to meet demand for services, driving people to seek costly services in the private sector. Telehealth can expand access to care while, in some cases, reducing unnecessary use of services, such as immediate acute care for non–health emergencies.

Using a call centre as the point of access, these models have reduced unnecessary use of services and supported patient navigation of local health services.

North-South health divide bigger than ever

Dying early (under age 75) is 20% more likely in northern compared with southern England according to research led by The University of Manchester

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The study uncovers a North-South divide in deaths among middle aged adults, which has been rising since the mid-90s and is now at alarming levels:

  • 49% more deaths among 35-44 year olds in the North in 2015
  • 29% more deaths among 25-34 year olds in the North in 2015

The team shows that a sharp increase in premature deaths among middle aged adults in the North first emerged in the mid-90s, increasingly quickly but consistently until the end of the study period in 2015.