Improving air quality across England

Councils should do more to enforce no vehicle idling outside schools, hospitals, and care homes, to protect the vulnerable from the harmful effects of air pollution and improve air quality across England. | NICE | Public Health England | via OnMedica

exhaust-517799_1920

Joint guidance issued today from NICE and Public Health England (PHE) suggests bylaws to enforce engine switch-off while cars are stationary could help protect the vulnerable from the harmful effects of air pollution.

Air pollution is harmful to everyone, but some people are more at risk than others, it says: children and young teens and older people are more susceptible, as are those with respiratory conditions or heart problems. PHE estimate long-term exposure to particulate air pollution has ‘an effect equivalent to’ around 25,000 deaths a year in England, making air pollution the largest environmental risk linked to deaths every year. The health impact of air pollution caused by human activities in the UK is thought to cost between £8.5 and £18.6 billion a year.

Full story at OnMedica

Download the guidance: Air pollution: outdoor air quality and health

Start active, stay active

The Department of Health has produced a series of infographics as part of it’s ‘Start active, stay active’ series explaining the physical activity required to achieve general health benefits for different age ranges.

forest-662427_1920The following infographics relate to the report by the UK’s 4 Chief Medical Officers for the NHS, local authorities and a range of other organisations designing services to promote physical activity.

Physical activity for pregnant women

Physical activity benefits for babies and children (birth-5 years old)

Physical activity for children and young people (5-18 years old)

Physical activity benefits infographic for adults and older people

National child measurement programme operational guidance

Guidance for local commissioners, providers and schools on running the national child measurement programme (NCMP) as part of the government’s commitment to tackling the public health challenge of excess weight.

tape-measure-2406650_1920 (1)

 

The publication of the Childhood Obesity Plan: A Plan for Action, in August 2016 shows that tackling child obesity is a priority for the Government. The plan aims to significantly reduce England’s rate of childhood obesity within the next ten years. Most local authorities have also identified addressing childhood obesity as a key issue in their health and wellbeing strategies, and reducing obesity is prioritised in many Sustainability and Transformation Plans.

The NCMP is key to monitoring the progress of the Government’s Childhood Obesity Plan. It provides the data for the Public Health Outcomes Framework indicators on “excess weight in children aged four to five years and ten to 11 years.” Because the data is valid at local level, it can also be used to inform the development and monitoring of local childhood obesity strategies.

National child measurement programme operational guidance

National child measurement programme: information for schools

Adult weight management

Public Health England has published guidance to support the commissioning and delivery of tier 2 adult weight management services.

This guidance supports commissioners and providers of tier 2 adult weight management services, including:

  • local authorities (LAs)
  • clinical commissioning groups (CCGs)
  • NHS institutions

The guidance is published under the following categories: following categories:

Commission and provide

Adult weight management services: commission and provide

Weight management services: insights into user experiences

Interventions

Data collection

Preventing tooth decay in children under five

This professional resource from Public Health England outlines how health professionals, councils and partners can help prevent tooth decay in children under 5 as part of ensuring every child has the best start in life.

The guidance covers the following areas:

  • Scale of the problem
  • Risk factors for tooth decay
  • How to prevent tooth decay
  • Effective interventions for improving dental health
Preventing decay

Image Source: http://www.gov.uk

Guidelines aim to help identify and treat stroke in children

New guidelines on recognising and managing stroke in children have been launched by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health and the Stroke Association to help prevent the potential damage that can occur if symptoms go unrecognised.

Every year around 400 children in the UK have a stroke, and many are left with severe physical and mental impairments.

The guidelines say that most children experiencing a stroke will have similar symptoms to adults—specifically, weakness of the face and on one side of the body and difficulty with speech. Less commonly, childhood strokes may present with seizures or fits affecting one part of the body or, rarely, a new onset sudden severe headache, the guidelines say, adding that many children will have non-specific signs of illness, such as a decrease in consciousness level or vomiting.

The guidelines also highlight a lack of evidence in terms of treating childhood stroke. In a foreword to the guidelines Tony Rudd, professor of stroke medicine at King’s College, London and national clinical director for stroke at NHS England, says that the first edition of the guideline was published 12 years ago and that one of its main findings was the lack of research into stroke in childhood.

Full document: Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health, Stroke Association. Stroke in childhood: clinical guideline for diagnosis, management and rehabilitation. May 2017.

Updated confidentiality guidance comes into force for doctors

From 25th April 2017 all doctors practising medicine in the UK will be expected to follow revised, expanded and restructured ethical guidance on confidentiality | GMC

confidentiality GMC

Image source: GMC

Confidentiality: good practice in handling patient information has been updated following an extensive consultation exercise, and is now more explicit than previously published guidance about working with patients. It now clarifies:

  • The circumstances in which doctors can rely on implied consent to share patient information for direct care.
  • The importance of sharing information for direct care, recognising the multi-disciplinary and multi-agency context doctors work in.
  • The significant role that those close to a patient can play in providing support and care, and the importance of acknowledging that role.
  • The public protection responsibilities of doctors, including when to make disclosures in the public interest.

The full guidance is available here