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Patient Safety Learning

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  1. News Article
    The NHS will start publishing “hidden” figures on A&E waiting times following several leaks reported by The Independent. After unveiling its emergency care plan on Monday, NHS England confirmed it would release internal data each month - currently only made public once a year - showing how many people are waiting for longer than 12 hours after arriving at an emergency department. The Independent has published several leaks of this data, which shows that these waiting times can be up to five times higher than publicly available NHS figures. Official monthly figures only count the
  2. News Article
    The Covid-19 pandemic cannot continue being blamed for poor cancer care, a charity boss has said. Judi Rhys, of Tenovus Cancer Care, said urgent action was needed to save lives when more people than ever are living with cancer in Wales. It comes as the Wales Cancer Network publishes a three-year plan to improve cancer outcomes and patient experience. But the group's clinical director warned the immediate priority would be maintaining current services. Prof Tom Crosby, clinical director for Wales Cancer Network, which was tasked by Wales' health minister to draw up the impro
  3. News Article
    All three acute trusts in an integrated care system are failing to meet national requirements to tackle health inequalities after being overwhelmed by emergency and elective care pressures. A report by Devon Integrated Care Board found progress on addressing variation in poor health outcomes had “slipped due to capacity issues.” Both Royal Devon University Healthcare Foundation Trust and Torbay and South Devon FT were rated “red” for a lack of headway. All trusts were told by NHSE in 2021 to undertake a range of actions as part of work to reduce health inequalities during 2022-23.
  4. News Article
    A dementia home care agency spent as little as three and a half minutes on taxpayer-funded care visits and filed records claiming far more care was given, according to evidence seen by the Guardian. The hasty care was exposed by Susan Beswick’s family, who called it “totally inadequate”. They say they had been told visits to 78-year-old Beswick, who has Alzheimer’s disease, were supposed to last 30 or 45 minutes. Across nine visits this month, care workers formally logged close to six hours of care. But security cameras suggest they were in the house for under one hour 20 minutes – l
  5. News Article
    Six wards in a busy London Hospital, added at a cost of £24 billion during the pandemic, are lying empty because the builders did not install sprinklers. With the NHS in crisis, the Royal London Hospital in east London, has had to mothball the space, which is large enough to take 155 intensive care beds, while officials work out what to do with it. They have no patients in it since last May. Source: The Sunday Times, 29 January 2023 Shared by Shaun Lintern on Twitter
  6. News Article
    Parkinson’s patients are suffering from “devastating effects” as GPs have started to switch to cheaper drugs which have different release rates into the body. Parkinson’s UK put out a warning when a 65-year-old man who had been successfully managing the condition for 17 years suddenly needed help eating and getting dressed. This happened after his branded medication Sinemet was changed to a cheaper form of the drug. Barrie Smith - who comes from Birmingham - was left in pain, developed slow speech and experienced an uncontrolled tremor when his normal Sinemet medication was swit
  7. News Article
    Trusts are getting better at coping with industrial action and are still on track to hit the national target of eliminating the backlog of 78-week waiters, an NHS England director has told staff. Paul Doyle, NHS England’s programme director for elective recovery, said: “We continue to make really good progress [on elective recovery]… we are very much in the end game now of meeting the 78-week ambition for the end of March.” There have been concerns about the impact of recent strike action on eliminating the 78-week backlog, but Mr Doyle praised managers’ handling of the strikes and s
  8. News Article
    Artificial hip and knee joints that have to be removed after failing early are to be examined routinely to save the NHS £200million a year – and reduce unnecessary pain for patients in future. Less than 1 in 100 removed implants are examined to see why they failed, so surgeons don’t learn what went wrong or pick up on potential scandals. Consultant orthopaedic surgeon Raghavendra Sidaginamale, of North Tees and Hartlepool NHS Trust, said: "Most removed implants are put in the bin. A wealth of information goes down the drain." Now the NHS is setting up an Implants Analysis Servic
  9. News Article
    More than half a million patients a year will be treated in “hospitals at home” in an attempt to relieve pressure on A&E departments. Under the plans, elderly and frail patients who fall will be treated by video link, with ministers saying that a fifth of emergency admissions could be avoided with the right care. Health officials said the “virtual wards” would be backed up by £14 billion in extra spending on health and care services over the next two years, as the NHS tackles record backlogs, with seven million people on waiting lists. Rishi Sunak said the Urgent & Emerg
  10. News Article
    The National Crime Agency and Interpol has been drafted in by detectives investigating a junior doctor accused of multiple sexual assaults on children and adults in A&E departments. Last year, Staffordshire police began an investigation into a 35-year-old medic's work at two hospitals, the Royal Stoke University Hospital in Staffordshire and the Russells Hall Hospital in Dudley, West Midlands. Source: Sunday Times Shared by Shaun Lintern Tweet, 29 January 2023
  11. News Article
    Erik, a 26-year-old Seattle grocery clerk, who also has attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD), has been unable to get his medications filled for months now – and he’s worried he’ll lose the first full-time job he’s ever had. For people like Erik, ADHD medication is a prerequisite for basic functioning – and over the last year it’s become dramatically harder for patients like them to access care. Last October, the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) announced a shortage of Adderall, one of the most common stimulant medications for ADHD. In recent months, patients have reporte
  12. News Article
    The government’s target for England to become smoke-free by 2030 – which integrated care systems are expected to pursue – is being undermined by the unavailability of two smoking cessation medicines. The objective, set by government in 2019, is being taken forward by many ICSs, as they seek to prevent premature illness and death, and narrow health inequalities, with smoking rates normally higher in more deprived populations. However HSJ analysis of drug shortages revealed that the two cessation medicines are both currently unavailable for an extended period. Champix (varenicline
  13. Event
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    This Westminster Health Forum conference will focus on next steps for pharmacy services in healthcare delivery, and opportunities to develop the role of community pharmacy as part of the health service in England. It comes amidst proposals to increase prescribing powers for pharmacists and reform training to enable pharmacists to work as independent prescribers immediately following graduation, as well as the Health Secretary announcing additional pharmacy services within the Primary Care Recovery Plan, and also indicating that implementation of a Pharmacy First system in England is being
  14. News Article
    The NHS faces an alarming mass exodus of doctors and dental professionals, health chiefs have said, as a report reveals 4 in 10 are likely to quit over “intolerable” pressures. Intense workloads, rapidly soaring demand for urgent and emergency healthcare and the record high backlog of operations are causing burnout and exhaustion and straining relationships between medics and patients, according to the report by the Medical Defence Union (MDU), which provides legal support to about 200,000 doctors, dental professionals and other healthcare workers in the UK. In an MDU survey of more
  15. News Article
    Thousands of NHS staff across the UK are facing pay cuts because of a change in Covid sickness policy. Analysis by BBC Panorama suggests that between 5,000 and 10,000 NHS workers could be off sick with Long Covid. Unions are accusing the government of failing to support health staff who worked during the coronavirus pandemic. The government says the Covid-19 public inquiry will examine these issues when it begins taking evidence in May. Changes to special sick pay rules introduced during the pandemic mean that some NHS staff unable to work due to Long Covid may soon no long
  16. News Article
    A highly toxic chemical compound sold illegally in diet pills is to be reclassified as a poison, a government minister has said. Pills containing DNP, or 2,4-dinitrophenol, were responsible for the deaths of 32 young vulnerable adults, said campaigner Doug Shipsey. His daughter Bethany, from Worcester, died in 2017 after taking tablets containing the chemical. The deaths were down to a "collective failure of the UK government", he said. DNP is highly toxic and not intended for human consumption. An industrial chemical, it is sold illegally in diet pills as a fat-burning sub
  17. Content Article
    DHSC and NHS England's delivery plan A. Increase capacity, to help deal with increasing pressures on hospitals which see 19 in 20 beds currently occupied. 1. Dedicated funding of £1 billion will pay for additional capacity, including 5,000 new beds as part of the permanent bed base for next winter. 2. Over 800 new ambulances, including 100 specialist mental health ambulances, the majority of which will be on the road by next winter. 3. ‘Same day’ emergency care services will be in place across every hospital with a major emergency department, so patients avoid unnecessa
  18. News Article
    NHS England has revealed a new intervention regime, as it seeks to deliver on its new urgent and emergency care recovery plan. Systems will be placed in three “tiers of intervention”, with those systems deemed “off-target on delivery” being given “tier three intensive support” from NHSE, which will include on-the-ground planning, analytical and delivery capacity, “buddying” with leading systems and “targeted executive leadership”. The approach follows that which has been taken over the past year for elective and cancer care recovery. The urgent care plan, published by NHSE and
  19. News Article
    Thousands of extra hospital beds and hundreds of ambulances will be rolled out in England this year in a bid to tackle the long emergency care delays. The 5,000 new beds will boost capacity by 5%, while the ambulance fleet will increase by 10% with 800 new vehicles. Details of the £1bn investment will be set out later in a joint government and NHS England two-year blueprint. Questions have also been raised about how the extra resources will be staffed - 1 in 10 posts in the NHS is vacant. The government believes the measures, which will be introduced from April, will help t
  20. News Article
    The UK health department was forced to write down £14.9bn worth of personal protective equipment and other medical items, according to a report by the independent public spending watchdog, which also issued a scathing criticism of the UK Health Security Agency. The National Audit Office said that the Department for Health and Social Care did not complete an “effective programme of year-end stock counts” to assess the quality and quantity of coronavirus-related items, such as lateral flow tests. During the last two financial years, the DHSC reported nearly £15bn of write down costs as
  21. News Article
    Children came to “significant” harm due to chronically low staffing levels at scandal-hit mental health hospitals, whistleblowers have said. In a third exposé into allegations of poor care at private hospitals run by The Huntercombe Group, former employees have claimed that staffing levels were so low “every day” that patients were neglected, resulting in: Patients as young as 13 being force-fed while restrained. Left alone to self-harm instead of being supervised. Left to “wet themselves” because staff couldn’t supervise toilet visits. One staff member, Rebecca
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