Health & Care workforce strategy

This draft strategy sets out the current workforce landscape, what has been achieved since 2012, and describes an approach to shaping the face of the NHS and social care workforce for the next two decades |  Health Education England

Facing the Facts, Shaping the Future – a health and care workforce strategy for England to 2027 considers the outputs of major workforce plans for the priorities laid out in the Five Year Forward View – cancer, mental health, maternity, primary and community care and urgent and emergency care.

The consultation starts 13 December 2017 and finishes on Friday March 23, 2018.
To take part in the consultation, click on the website link below and complete the survey.
consultation.hee.nhs.uk

Related: Health Foundation responds to new workforce strategy

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What does the Autumn Budget mean for the NHS and social care?

In the budget this week, the Chancellor committed around £2 billion extra for the NHS next year. Nigel Edwards of the Nuffield Trust said this will bring respite for patients and staff, but is only around half of what’s needed.

In a Q&A about the budget, Tom Moberly, The BMJ’s UK editor, met with John Appleby (Nuffield Trust), Anita Charlesworth (Health Foundation) and Siva Anandaciva (King’s Fund) to discuss what it all means for the NHS and social care. You can watch the discussion below:

See also: Autumn Budget 2017: what it means for health and social care | The Kings Fund | Nuffield Trust | The Health Foundation

 

 

Spending constraints associated with a higher than expected number of deaths

Study published in the British Medical Journal suggests cuts to public funding of health and social care since 2010 could be linked to almost 120,000 excess deaths in England | BMJ | OnMedica

The study reports that between 2010 and 2014, the NHS in England had a real-term annual increase in funding of 1.3%, despite rising patient demand and healthcare costs. Real-term spend on social care has fallen by 1.19% every year during the same period.

Researchers compared actual death rates for 2011 to 2014 with those that would be expected, based on trends before spending cuts came into play, and taking account of national and economic factors, such as unemployment rates and pensions.

The researchers’ analysis of the data showed that between 2001 and 2010, deaths in England fell by an average of 0.77% every year, but rose by an average of 0.87% every year between 2011 and 2014.

The spending restraints were associated with 45,368 higher than expected numbers of deaths between 2010 and 2014 compared with equivalent trends before 2010.

Full reference: Watkins J. et al. |  Effects of health and social care spending constraints on mortality in England: a time trend analysis | BMJ Open 2017

Related: Excess deaths could be linked to health spending cuts

How will our future relationship with the EU shape the NHS?

This briefing from the Nuffield Trust explores five key areas where the deals the UK government reaches with the EU – or lack of them – will impact upon health and social care.

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The report argues that an exit deal will be needed to make sure:

  • The rights of tens of thousands of EU doctors and nurses are guaranteed, minimising the chances of an exodus making already concerning staff shortages across the NHS worse;
  • A sudden legal vacuum does not risk supplies of already approved medicines, and human substances like blood plasma;
  • Expat pensioners who access healthcare under EU schemes do not feel forced to return, potentially requiring up to £500 million more in annual spending, and 1000 extra hospital beds;
  • British patients do not face slower access to life saving drugs, and British and European taxpayers do not have to pay more for duplicate regulation in medicines.

Full briefing: How will our future relationship with the EU shape the NHS?

Improving healthcare access for people with learning disabilities

Guidance for social care staff on how to help people with learning disabilities get better access to medical services to improve their health | Public Health England

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The health charter for social care and accompanying guidance provide information about the steps organisations and providers can take to improve the health and wellbeing of the people they support. There are practical tips as well as links to further information and useful resources.

There is also a self-assessment tool to enable organisations signed up to the health charter to measure progress and develop an action plan for improvements.

The series of short information sheets show social care staff how they can help people with learning disabilities to get better access to health services.

The documents can be accessed via Public Health England

Funding social care

The Voluntary Organisations Disability Group has published True costs: why we cannot ignore the failure in social care funding.  This report sets out the pressures facing voluntary sector organisations supporting disabled people.  It identifies the three key challenges as an increasing demand for services; rising costs of providing services and workforce recruitment and retention problems.

A systems approach to health and care design

A more holistic or ‘joined-up’  systems approach to health and social care provision could help  transform the way these essential services are delivered and address the needs of a changing patient population | Royal College of Physicians

The Royal Academy of Engineering, the Academy of Medical Sciences and the Royal College of Physicians have published Engineering better care: a systems approach to health and care design and continuous improvement.

This report explores how an engineering approach could be applied in health and social care to develop systems that meet the needs of patients, carers and NHS staff.  It presents a framework to support ongoing work in service design and improvement in health and care.  It found that more widespread application of a rigorous systems approach to health and care improvement, has the potential to have a transformative effect on health and care.

Full document: Engineering better care: a systems approach to health and care design and continuous improvement.