78 NHS trusts to receive new cancer screening machines

78 trusts will receive funding for new machines that will improve patient experience and lead to earlier diagnosis | via Department of Health and Social Care

The Rotherham NHS Foundation Trust is one of 78 trusts that will benefit from funding for new cancer testing and detection technology.  The new machines will improve screening and early diagnosis of cancer, and are part of the government’s commitment to ensure 55,000 more people survive cancer each year.

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Last month the Prime Minister announced the extra £200 million in funding for new cancer screening equipment. 78 trusts will receive funding over the next 2 years to replace, refurbish and upgrade:

  • CT and MRI scanners – bringing in alternatives with lower radiation levels
  • breast screening imaging and assessment equipment

Replacing and upgrading machines will improve efficiency by:

  • making them easier to use
  • being quicker to scan and construct images
  • reducing the need to re-scan

This new equipment also brings new capability, with many machines enabled for artificial intelligence (AI) so the NHS is ready for the challenges of the future.

Each trust has been allocated funding for new machines based on an assessment of local infrastructure and local population need. They will all contribute to the NHS Long Term Plan’s goal of catching three-quarters of all cancers earlier when they are easier to treat.

Full story at Department of Health and Social Care

See also: Full list of trusts that will receive funding.

Social care funding and mental health

Centre for Mental Health | September 2019 | Social care funding and mental health

The latest policy briefing from the Centre for Mental Health looks at what a fair and sustainable funding settlement for social care needs to look like in order to deliver parity of esteem for mental health and sufficient funding to support people of working age as well as those in later life.

In their latest briefing, the Centre for Mental Health look at what a fair and sustainable funding settlement for social care needs to look like in order to deliver equity of esteem for mental health and sufficient funding to support people of working age as well as those in later life.

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Social care funding and mental health
 reviews the current funding and provision of mental health social work for people of working age in England. It finds that mental health social work has a vital role in helping people to live independently and to secure their rights and dignity. Local authorities also support carers and commission advocacy services, including for people subject to the Mental Health Act

The briefing concludes that the new settlement for social care must therefore:
• Provide parity of esteem for mental health with other social service functions
• Secure fair funding for people of working age
• Resolve the confusion between health, housing and social care funding for people
with ongoing care needs
• Enable local councils to invest for the future in their workforce and their community(Source: Centre for Mental Health).

Social care funding and mental health

Download the briefing here 

What should be done to fix the crisis in social care?

This ‘long read’ sets out five messages for government about priorities and options for social care reform in England, based on an assessment of the evidence and analysis of the costs of reform.  It focuses primarily on changes to the funding system rather than other policy questions such as the relationship between the NHS and social care | The Health Foundation

This analysis from the Health Foundation sets out five priorities for the new government for social care:

  • To stabilise the current social care system, which is at risk of collapse. The Health Foundation estimates this would cost £4.4bn by 2023/24. In 2020/21, this would cost £1bn.
  • To protect individuals against unfair and catastrophic care costs. A range of approaches could be used here. The Health Foundation recommends a Dilnot-style model where the government can set the maximum amount individuals would be required to pay over their life time. An approach whereby the maximum cost was capped at £46,000 would cost government an additional £3.1bn per annum by 2023/24.
  • To increase eligibility and access to social care. To reinstate levels of access to 2010 levels would cost an additional £8.1bn, according to Health Foundation analysis.
  • To see the capped cost model as a flexible approach to reform. The principle of a cap on care costs was included in the 2014 Care Act and could be put in place without new legislation.
  • To explore a range of options for raising revenue. After a decade of austerity in public finances, cutting other services to pay for social care is not feasible or desirable. Increases in tax revenue is likely to be needed, although borrowing could also play a part.

Full detail: What should be done to fix the crisis in social care? Five priorities for government

See also: Press release: New government must act to end the shameful policy failure at the heart of adult social care

How Does UK Healthcare Spending Compare With Other Countries?

This briefing provides an analysis of UK health care spending relative to comparable countries, such as the G7 group of large developed economies or member nations of the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) | Office for National Statistics

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It finds that the UK spent an average of £2,989 per person on health care in 2017 which is the median for OECD countries. However, of the G7 group of large, developed economies, UK healthcare spending per person was the second-lowest, with the highest spenders being France (£3,737), Germany (£4,432) and the United States (£7,736).

Other key findings:

  • As a percentage of GDP, UK healthcare spending fell from 9.8% in 2013 to 9.6% in 2017, while healthcare spending as a percentage of GDP rose for four of the remaining six G7 countries.
  • The UK’s publicly funded NHS-based health system contributes to the UK having one of the highest shares of publicly funded healthcare (79%) in the OECD.
  • In 2017, the UK spent the equivalent of £560 per person on health-related long-term care, which was less than most other northern or western European countries, but a similar amount to France (£569) and Canada (£556).

Full document: How does UK healthcare spending compare with other countries?
An analysis of UK healthcare spending relative to comparable countries, using data produced to the international definitions of the System of Health Accounts.

A chink of light? Tackling the under-funding of social care

NHS Confederation | August 2019 | A chink of light? Tackling the under-funding of social care

A new briefing released by Health for Care a coalition, led by the NHS Confederation, a coalition of 15 national health organisations, calls on the government to deliver a sustainable social care system in England, backed up by a long-term financial settlement. NHS Confederation looks to identify the factors that have been placing a strain on adult social care in recent years and what the future pressures could be. This briefing analyses the anticipated adult social care funding gap in 2019/20, concluding that to maintain the status quo, the cash injection required is between £1.1 billion and £2.5 billion (Source: NHS Confederation).

The briefing is available from NHS Confederation 

See also:

NHS Confederation Largest public petition of its kind calls on Prime Minister to end the crisis in care

PM announces extra £1.8 billion for NHS frontline services

The Department of Health and Social Care et al |August 2019| PM announces extra £1.8 billion for NHS frontline services

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has confirmed a new £1.8 billion NHS cash injection to help improve patient care. The PM announced the 20 hospitals set to share £850 million of new funding to upgrade outdated facilities and equipment – helping improve patient care and ultimately save more lives.

The £1.8 billion funding is in addition to the extra £33.9 billion, in cash terms, the NHS is set to receive every year by 2023/24 through the Long Term Plan agreed last year. Over £1 billion of this will be spent this year, meaning an annual increase in the NHS’s capital budget of 30% .

Among the beneficiaries are:

South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw Integrated Care System – which will receive a £57.5 million for primary Care investment across South Yorkshire and Bassetlaw.

Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust – £12 million to provide a single Laboratory Information Management System across West Yorkshire and Harrogate, covering all pathology disciplines (Source: The Department of Health and Social Care)

In the news:

BBC News Is NHS buildings boost all it seems?

Cancer Research UK funding tops half a billion pounds

Cancer Research UK raised £540m in fundraising income in the last financial year, an increase of 2 per cent over the previous year, in one of its most successful fundraising years so far.

This increase was in part thanks to more money raised from legacy donations, Race for Life and Stand Up To Cancer, which all raised more than the previous year.  And an additional £2m was raised via Facebook charitable giving, an innovative new fundraising platform that launched towards the end of the year.

Total income for the year was £672m, an increase of 6% on the previous year, which includes fundraising income as well as £125m income from charitable activities – the largest amount ever received, which will be reinvested in research.

Key achievements outlined in Cancer Research UK’s annual report and accounts,  include:

  • Securing a strong commitment to early cancer diagnosis in the NHS Long Term Plan.
  • Three new international Grand Challenge teams awarded £20m each over the next five years, to solve long-standing mysteries in cancer research
  • Launching the Cancer Research UK City of London Centre, a £14m investment to create a world-leading cancer therapeutics research hub.
  • Launching a new Brain Tumour Award funding scheme, to accelerate progress in research on brain tumours.

Full press release at Cancer Research UK