Local authorities will continue to commission public health services

Review recommends that councils and the NHS work more closely to co-commission public health services, including health visiting and school nursing | Department of Health and Social Care

The review, conducted by the Department of Health and Social Care, recommends that the NHS work much more closely with local authorities on public health so that commissioning is more joined-up and prevention is embedded into a wider range of health services.

As part of the NHS Long Term Plan, the government committed to reviewing commissioning arrangements for some local authority-commissioned public health services.

Health and Social Care Secretary Matt Hancock confirmed that the departmental review found that local authorities take an active and efficient approach to commissioning services. He also praised local councils for their work in commissioning public health services and confirmed they will continue to lead on this important work.

He acknowledged that many local authorities have taken steps to improve and modernise the services they commission, including through digital delivery, such as online STI testing.

Full story at Department of Health and Social Care

 

Free course: The NHS Explained: How the Health System in England Really Works

Future Learn | The NHS Explained: How the Health System in England Really Works

The National Health Service (NHS) is a source of British national pride placed above the BBC, the British Olympic team, and the Royal Family. It affects the lives of millions of people.

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Image source: futurelearn.com

But have you ever wondered how many people it takes to keep a nation healthy? Or how much money it costs to run the NHS? Or why hospital waiting times are always in the headlines?

This course will help you understand what keeps the fifth largest employer in the world running. You’ll explore the challenges facing the system, and how to ensure the NHS is fit for the future.

Topics covered:

  • How the NHS in England is structured
  • How different services work together to deliver health care in the NHS
  • How funding flows through the system
  • How well the NHS is doing
  • How performance is measured in the NHS
  • Future challenges facing the NHS and how the system is changing in response to this (Source: Future Learn )

Requires registration with Future Learn

Full details available from Future Learn 

Who decides the price and availability of NHS medicines?

Centre for Health and the Public Interest | March 2019 | Who decides the price and availability of NHS medicines?

Who decides the price and availability of NHS medicines? is a briefing from the  Centre for Health and the Public Interest. The release summarises the key forces determining the price and availability of new medicines in the NHS. It explains the tension between pharmaceutical companies, purchasers (e.g. the NHS), and patients’ representative groups.

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Image source: chpi.org

 

Who decides the price and availability of NHS medicines?

Who decides the price and availability of NHS medicines? [Press release]

Public satisfaction with the NHS and social care in 2018

Since 1983, NatCen Social Research’s British Social Attitudes survey has asked members of the public in England, Scotland and Wales about their views on the NHS and health and care issues more generally.  Alongside the Nuffield Trust, in this publication the King’s Fund  explores the findings from the 2018 survey.

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

The BSA is a ‘gold standard’ survey and is conducted the same way every year, with the data provideing a rich time trend going back to 1983. This adds a depth and context to the findings that no other measure of NHS satisfaction provides. As a result, when satisfaction changes in the BSA, we are as confident as we can be that it reflects a genuine change in public attitudes.

Key findings

Satisfaction with the NHS overall in 2018

  • Public satisfaction with the NHS overall continued to fall in 2018. Overall satisfaction was 53 per cent – a 3 percentage point drop from the previous year and the lowest level since 2007.
  • Older people were more satisfied than younger people: 61 per cent of those aged 65 and over were satisfied with the NHS compared to 51 per cent of those aged 18–64.
  • Satisfaction levels also differed between supporters of different political parties: 58 per cent of supporters of the Conservative party were satisfied compared to 51 per cent of supporters of the Labour party.
  • The four main reasons people gave for being satisfied with the NHS overall were: the quality of care; the fact that the NHS is free at the point of use; the range of services and treatments available; and the attitudes and behaviour of NHS staff.
  • The four main reasons people gave for being dissatisfied with the NHS overall were: long waiting times; staff shortages; a lack of funding; and money being wasted.

Full detail at The King’s Fund

Full publication: Public satisfaction with the NHS and social care in 2018: Results from the British Social Attitudes survey

See also:

Beyond the high fence

NHS England |February 2019 | Beyond the high fence from the unheard voices of  people with a learning disability, autism or both

Beyond the high fence from the unheard voices of  people with a learning disability, autism or both is a joint publication by NHS England and Pathways Associates. It was co-produced with people with a learning disability and autistic people who are, or have been, in hospital and offers their views on what more needs to happen to improve quality of care and support people to make a successful return to their communities (Source: NHS England).

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Image source: england.nhs.uk

Beyond the high fence from the unheard voices of  people with a learning disability, autism or both

NHS Long Term Plan: “Advances in technology mean outpatients appointment are not the fastest or most accurate way to provide specialist advice”

NHS  | January 2019 | NHS Long Term Plan

The NHS’ 10 year plan outlines how a third or outpatients appointments may be reduced as the current model is “outdated and unsustainable”.

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Outpatients traditionally serve at least three purposes, and in each case there are
opportunities for redesign. An outpatient appointment can provide: advice and diagnosis for a patient and their GP; follow-up review after a hospital procedure; and ongoing specialist input into a long-term condition. Technology means an outpatient appointment is often no longer the fastest or most accurate way of providing specialist advice on diagnosis or ongoing patient care. 

The plan describes  the traditional model of outpatient care as being “outdated  and unsustainable”.  It outlines its intention to  redesign services so that over the next five years patients will be able to avoid up to a third of face-to-face outpatient visits, removing the need for up to 30 million outpatient visits a year.

The document also includes a case study of Tower Hamlets  Chronic Kidney Disease e-Clinics where a single pathway from primary to secondary care with rapid
access to specialist advice provided by consultant led e-clinics have transformed the way the way this care is delivered.

Four reasons are cited as enabling these technology-driven shifts:

 

  1. They are already happening
    in parts of the NHS, so this is clearly ‘the art of the possible’.
  2. There is strong patient ‘pull’ for these new ways of accessing services, freeing-up staff time for those people who can’t or
    prefer not to.
  3. The hardware to support ‘mobile health’ is already in most people’s pockets –
    in the form of their smart phone – and the connection software is increasingly available for the NHS to credential from third party providers.
  4. The Long Term Plan provides dedicated funding to capitalise on these opportunities

Read the NHS Long Term Plan at the NHS Long Term Plan website  (Source: NHS Long Term Plan)

See also:

OnMedica | Number of outpatients appointments to be cut