Smoking cessation in secondary care: acute and maternity settings

Self-assessment framework for NHS acute trusts to develop local action to reduce smoking prevalence and the use of tobacco. | Public Health England

This self-assessment tool breaks down the NICE guidance into 4 areas:

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  • systems required to implement the guidance
  • communication required
  • training that will help staff to successfully implement the recommendations
  • treatments that should be available to support staff and service users

This self-assessment tool supports all of the recommendations applicable to acute services in the NICE guidelines on Smoking cessation in secondary care.

Public Health England has also developed a suite of resources including a self-assessment tool to support the implementation of NICE guidance in mental health settings.

NICE takes key role in new European project for faster access to Alzheimer’s disease drugs

Patients’ priorities will be brought to the fore in new Alzheimer’s project | NICE

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NICE is taking part in a European project to speed up the development of new drugs to treat Alzheimer’s disease.

The ROADMAP initiative aims to establish a sustainable platform for real world evidence generation on Alzheimer’s disease.

The new project provides a unique and game-changing opportunity to gather evidence from other sources, such as electronic health records, and discover what outcomes are important to patients and carers.

Alzheimer’s disease, and the different ways it presents and progresses in different people, poses a difficulty for traditional clinical trials which do not always provide answers decision makers such as NICE would be looking for when assessing new drugs to treat the disease.

Read the full news story here

NICE: Traditional under the tongue temperature-taking helps patients avoid hypothermia during surgery

Traditional under the tongue or armpit temperature-taking are among the recommended ways of monitoring a patient’s temperature to help avoid hypothermia during surgery, says NICE.

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The updated guideline on preventing and managing hypothermia during surgery also says that some familiar methods of taking a patient’s temperature – such as infrared ear thermometers and forehead strips – should not be used to measure the temperature in adults before, during or after surgery.

Hypothermia is classed as the body temperature dropping below 36.0°C – if this happens during surgery it can lead to the patient losing more blood, more chance of heart problems, and slower healing.  Normal body temperature is typically in a range between 36.5ºC and 37.5ºC.

Read the full overview here

Patients should be more involved in decisions about their care, says @NICEcomms

NICE | Published online: 19 September 2016

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Image source: NICE

A new collaborative, made up of the UK’s leading health care organisations including NICE, has set out plans that will help get patients more involved in decisions about their care.

Research has shown that when clinicians and health care professionals work together with their patient, more appropriate decisions are made about their care.

Called the ‘Shared Decision Making Collaborative’, the group of organisations made up of NICE, NHS England, the General Medical Council, professional bodies, patient organisations and universities, will work together to ensure shared decisions about care become a reality in everyday clinical practice.

A consensus statement and action plan outlines each organisation’s intentions and commitments to promote a move away from paternal medicine, so that care is delivered with the patient, not at the patient.

View the full statement here

Tackling falling child vaccination rates

vaccination-1215279_960_720NICE is developing priorities to help ensure unvaccinated children across the country get the protection they need.  In some areas of the country, fewer than 1 in 5 children are vaccinated against diseases such as polio and diphtheria. Experts have warned that unless uptake rates improve there is a risk of these diseases making a comeback.

Last year only a quarter of local authorities met World Health Organization targets to vaccinate 95% of children against measles, mumps and rubella.  A draft quality standard from NICE, out for consultation until 29 September, sets out how to drive up the number of under 19s who receive vaccinations.

New guidelines on anti-clotting drug could benefit thousands

The Guardian | Published online: 12th August

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Government advice suggests heart attack and stroke sufferers take 60mg of ticagrelor with aspirin to help prevent further cardiovascular events

New UK guidelines recommending treatment with an anti-clotting drug that prevents heart attacks and strokes looks likely to benefit thousands.

The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (Nice) has published draft guidance suggesting people who have had a heart attack should take 60mg of the drug ticagrelor with aspirin – a £2-per-day treatment – to reduce the risk of any further cardiovascular events.

Although a higher dose of the drug (around 90mg) is already prescribed to heart attack patients for 12 months, this new guidance recommends continuing with a lower dose for a further three years.

The anti-clotting drug is used by most UK centres because blood clots are responsible for causing heart attacks and strokes – and people who have already had one are at a higher risk of having another.

Heart attacks and strokes are caused by the buildup of fatty material in artery walls to form a plaque. If the plaque ruptures it can cause a blood clot which can block blood flow to heart muscles, causing a heart attack. If the clot dislodges it can travel in the bloodstream and block blood to the brain, causing a stroke.

Read the full news story here

HSJ Exclusive: NHS Improvement accused of ‘dismantling’ NICE safe staffing work

Litern, S. HSJ. Published online: 14 June 2016

  • NHS Improvement to revisit NICE safe staffing work on acute and maternity wards
  • Chief nursing officer had said NICE guidance would not be re-examined by NHS
  • Critics say move will confuse providers and risks undermining evidence based work
  • NHSI has eight “safe and sustainable staffing” committees

NHS Improvement has been accused of “undermining and dismantling” official safe staffing guidance after HSJ learned it is revisiting work already completed by NICE.

Senior sources close to the work at the regulator have told HSJ it is planning to publish safe staffing guidance for acute inpatient wards and maternity services – despite a pledge by NHS England’s chief nursing officer last year that this would not happen.

HSJ was told the action risks confusing hospitals and undermining the guidance published by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence following the Mid Staffordshire Foundation Trust public inquiry.

NHS England CNO Jane Cummings said in a letter to providers on 11 June 2015: “Nothing we are doing changes the NICE guidance that has already been issued… The next phase of the NHS’s role in this area is focusing on new care areas and will not involve going back on the guidance already published.”

Read the full news story here