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Found 522 results
  1. News Article
    Death rates from cancer in the US have fallen by 32% over the three decades from 1991 to 2019, according to the American Cancer Society. The decline is thanks to prevention, screening, early diagnosis and treatment of common cancers, including lung and breast cancer. The drop has meant 3.5m fewer deaths. However, cancers are still the second leading cause of death in the US, after heart disease. In 1991, the cancer death rate was 215 per 100,000 people and in 2019 it dropped to 146 per 100,000 people. Lung cancer, of which there are 230,000more cases each year, kills the most patients, 350 per day. But people are being diagnosed sooner, and technological advancements have increased the survival rate by three years. The report also examined racial and economic disparities in cancer outcomes. The Covid-19 pandemic added to already existing difficulties for marginalised groups to get cancer screenings and treatment. For nearly every type of cancer, white people have a higher survival rate than black people. Black women with breast cancer face a 41% higher death rate than white women. Read full story Source: BBC News, 12 January 2023
  2. News Article
    Prostate cancer patients across the UK face a “postcode lottery” of care, a charity has warned, with men in Scotland almost three times more likely to be diagnosed at a late stage compared with men in London. Prostate Cancer UK said the proportion diagnosed when the disease may be too advanced to treat varied hugely depending on where patients lived. Health leaders called the findings “shocking”. In Scotland, more than a third (35%) of men are only diagnosed when the disease is classed as stage 4, meaning the cancer has spread to another part of the body – known as metastatic cancer. In London, the figure is 12.5%. Chiara De Biase, director of support and influencing at Prostate Cancer UK, said, "We can’t say for sure what’s behind this gap in diagnosis, but it’s clear that men are more likely to be diagnosed at an earlier stage in areas with higher rates of PSA blood testing. That means the key way to tackle this is by raising awareness – especially in places like Scotland which are worst-affected." Read full story Source: The Guardian, 12 January 2023
  3. News Article
    Black patients wait up to six months longer for an organ transplant than the general population, new NHS data shows. The best match comes from someone of the same ethnicity - but only 2% of donors in 2021/22 were black, while black people are 4% of the population. Black families are also less likely to agree to organ donation than white families, the figures show. The NHS says there's an "urgent need" for more people from ethnic minorities to donate. Winnie Andango from NHS Blood and Transplant said, "Black people wait longer because there's less people coming forward to give their organs from their ethnic group. During covid, so many patients were suspended but those have been added back onto the list, and that means if we had less organs for this ethnic minority group, we have even less right now." Health Minister Neil O'Brien said: "We need more people, especially those from black and Asian heritage, to register their organ donation decision and share it with their family so loved ones can follow their wishes." Read full story Source: BBC News, 12 January 2023
  4. Content Article
    Sarah's tips for women when speaking to medical professionals Know your body and come prepared Equip yourself with evidence and knowledge Rule out the worst-case scenarios Bring back-up Treat it like a collaboration Try to understand the challenges your doctor faces
  5. Content Article
    Key points Rural and remote areas experienced problems that differentiate them from their more urban counterparts even before the Covid-19 pandemic. However, the pandemic has both exacerbated some of these challenges, as well as thrown up new ones. Covid-19 has had a more detrimental effect on hospital waiting times in rural and remote trusts than for trusts in more urban areas. In April 2020, the proportion of patients seen for their first consultant appointment for cancer fell by two-thirds (66%) in rural trusts compared with April 2019, whereas a decrease of 59% was seen in trusts located in more urban areas. Activity has fallen particularly dramatically in rural areas. Emergency admissions in April to June 2020 fell by 57% in rural trusts compared with the year before, while they fell by 45% elsewhere. The level of referral for talking therapies – via the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) programme – in rural areas was below half the level in April 2020 than it was a year before. The pandemic has exacerbated workforce issues in remote trusts. Remote trusts spend more on temporary staff (8% of their staffing budget) compared with other areas (6%). While the number of hospital and community health staff increased by 7% nationally in the year to June 2020, the workforce of remote trusts grew by only 5% over the same period. The underlying financial position of rural and remote services was worse than the position of more urban trusts before the pandemic started, and the pandemic may well have exacerbated this. Remote trusts’ debt was equivalent to more than half (56%) of their annual operating income in 2018/19. Remote trusts also typically do not seem to get their fair share of additional funding that goes into the NHS.
  6. News Article
    The Conservatives have been accused of “failing women” as analysis reveals gynaecology waiting times have trebled in the past decade, with more than 540,000 waiting for NHS care. NHS England data shows that in October 2012, the average waiting time to see a gynaecologist was 4.8 weeks. By October 2022, the most recent month for which figures are available, that figure had increased by 225% to 15.6 weeks. Many of the conditions experienced by women waiting to see a gynaecologist are progressive. Left untreated, they can need more complex or invasive surgery. Thousands are living in extreme pain as a result of the long waits, doctors, health experts and charities told the Guardian. The figures reveal that 38,231 women have been waiting more than a year. Ten years ago there were 15 women in England waiting longer than 12 months – and no one waiting two years. Today, 69 women have been waiting more than 24 months. Dr Ranee Thakar, the president of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists, said: “This new analysis adds to our own research that gynaecology waiting lists were outstripping other specialities long before the pandemic, and they continue to grow rapidly. “Shockingly, the fact we can now track this pattern back 10 years, shows how long overdue action is to address the unequal growth in waiting lists.” Thakar added: “Women’s health has been consistently deprioritised. Gynaecology waiting times are currently the longest we’ve seen since waiting list targets were introduced, leaving thousands of women with symptoms including extreme pain, heavy menstrual bleeding and incontinence.” Read full story Source: The Guardian, 19 December 2022
  7. Event
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    The Covid-19 pandemic has laid bare deep-seated health inequalities and the issue is now at the forefront of the minds of people across the health and care system, as they seek to develop strategies aimed at reducing health inequalities at a regional, integrated care system (ICS) and place level. This conference will bring together individuals and teams developing health inequalities strategies. We will discuss the need for universal action at a population health level and targeted action to address issues affecting people facing the worst health outcomes, showing how these two approaches interlink. The conference will also explore opportunities across health and care to tackle health inequalities and learn from local and international leaders about how they are overcoming the challenges of turning evidence into action to make a difference to health inequalities. Register
  8. News Article
    Autistic people in England who do not also have a learning disability are approximately 51% more likely to die in a single year compared to the general population, according to a leaked document which estimates the mortality rate for the first time. According to an internal NHS England document, seen by HSJ, the standardised mortality rate between April 2020 and March 2021 was 16.6 deaths per 10,000 for people with autism and no learning disability compared to 11 deaths per 10,000 for the general population. NHSE also determined life expectancy for this group to be 75 years – 5.4 years less than the general population. Dominic Slowie, former national clinical director for learning disability, told HSJ that because of the different ways autism presents itself, it can be difficult to pinpoint causes of premature mortality. “In some cases, people with autism who are severely disabled and can’t communicate their needs in a conventional way are going to have premature mortality for the same reasons that people with a learning disability do, because people do not really understand the level of their need or do not investigate their need in a reasonably adjusted way,” he said. “While, if someone is presenting atypically in their communication, we mustn’t make presumptions – we must make reasonable adjustments to ensure they are investigated and diagnosed in the same way.” Read full story (paywalled) Source: HSJ, 13 December 2022
  9. Content Article
    Key points The study found successful strategies are typically associated with a concert of activities that simultaneously ensure sufficient supply of health care, manage demand and optimise the conditions within the health care system itself. In England in the 2000s, a number of activities were associated with reduced waiting times. These activities were concentrated within the categories of increasing supply and optimising conditions within the health care system itself to achieve the goal of an 18‑week referral to treatment target by 2008. These activities were underpinned by a bigger idea about what the health service as a whole should look and feel like, and incorporated how waiting times are brought down as much as what activities might be used. For the experts interviewed, the achievement of the 18 weeks target was made possible as a result of: valuing and investing in people working in the NHS; a clear, central vision and goal for waiting and an ambition that those working within health care felt equipped to take on; cultivating relationships and leadership at all levels of the health care system; accountability, incentives and targeted support to encourage performance against waiting times targets and other measures of quality of care; and seizing the momentum of wider NHS reform. Whereas the improvement in waiting times performance of nearly 20 years ago took place in a very different political and economic context, the research highlighted not only hope but opportunities to reduce waiting times in the present day: by addressing shortages of health care staff and physical resources urgently; by working with integrated care systems in the spirit of prevention, collaboration, inclusion and community‑based models of care; and by aligning a vision for the health services with a plan that brings staff, patients and the public along on the journey to get there.
  10. Event
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    Tackling inequalities is of vital importance to improving health outcomes. Join top experts from healthcare, science and policy at this full-day conference, in partnership with NHS England. Taking place at the Royal Society of Medicine in Central London, you’ll connect with the latest research and thinking on health inequalities, including at a networking event in the evening. The conference will include key speakers and panel sessions in the morning. The panels will focus on the importance of the key clinical areas outlined in the Core20PLUS5 approach and the role of national organisations in reducing healthcare inequalities. In the afternoon there will be expert sessions, focusing on the five clinical areas of health inequalities and a session on prevention. These will be delivered by senior leads from NHS England and specialist leads from the Royal Society of Medicine. This is a unique opportunity to network over drinks and a complimentary lunch with leaders in the tackling inequalities space, and specialists within the Core20PLUS5 medical sections. Keynote speakers: Dr Bola Owolabi, Director, Health Inequalities at NHS England Professor Sir Michael Marmot, Professor of Epidemiology at University College London, Director of the UCL Institute of Health Equity Register
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