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Found 55 results
  1. Content Article
    Far from being a drain, equality, diversity and inclusion (EDI) is an investment that can improve workforce wellbeing and experience, and enhance service design and delivery. It also ensures patients are involved in designing care. NHS Confederation sought the views of healthcare leaders to understand their perspectives on the value of an EDI approach to tackling inequalities in the NHS. This briefing captures what they found and what leaders need as a result.
  2. Content Article
    Older people’s mental health has long been overlooked and poor mental health is often dismissed by health professionals as an ‘inevitable’ part of getting older. And despite NHS Talking Therapies having higher than average recovery rates among the over-65s, this service is less likely to be offered to older people. Commissioned by Age UK, this briefing from the Centre for Mental Health summarises evidence about the mental health of older people in England. It finds that ageist attitudes underpin a system that discriminates against older people, while fatalistic assumptions about what people can expect for their mental health in later life undermine the provision of effective support to promote wellbeing, prevent mental ill health and treat mental health difficulties. The briefing finds that while older people may possess many protective factors for good mental health, they face numerous risk factors, including poorer physical health, reduced mobility and, for some, poverty and racism. Tackling the risk factors and boosting protective factors can increase wellbeing in later life and either prevent or stop the escalation of mental health problems.
  3. Content Article
    This cohort study examined whether sociodemographic characteristics affected patient access to and use of patient health care portals during the Covid-19 pandemic. The authors found significant disparities in portal use by sex, age, multimorbidity and health literacy were found. While disparities by sex and age decreased and were no longer statistically significant by 2021, disparities by multimorbidity remained consistent throughout the pandemic and disparities by health literacy were exacerbated.
  4. Content Article
    This study in BMJ Open aimed to describe the experiences and opinions of GPs in England about patients having access to their full online GP health records. 400 registered GPs in England completed an online survey. The results revealed some key findings: 91% GPs believed a majority of patients would worry more. 85% said they though patients would find their GP records more confusing than helpful. 60% believed a majority of patients would find significant errors in their records. 70% believed patients would better remember their care plan. 60% said patients would feel more in control of their care. 89% believed they will/already spend more time addressing patients’ questions outside of consultations. 81% said that consultations will/already take significantly longer. 72% said they will be/already are less candid in their documentation after online records access. 62% believed patients having access to their records would increase their litigation.
  5. Content Article
    Using experiences of care from over 10 million people collected over the past ten years, Healthwatch England presents a bold vision for the NHS in 2030. In a new report, Healthwatch outlines what they think the NHS should be in six years and how it can get there. The vision calls for a focus on three key themes: Making the NHS easier to access and navigate. Tackling health inequalities.  Building a patient-centred culture. 
  6. Content Article
    This ethnographic study looked at five local Healthwatch organisations to determine the extent to which they have fulfilled their intended role of fostering co-creation in health and social care in England. The study results demonstrate clear activity and some tangible impacts that have been achieved towards the aim of cocreation. However, the authors also highlight that the positioning of these organisations as 'collaborative insiders' in local governance systems has limited the issues that have been prioritised in co-creative activities. This analysis suggests that the increasing promotion of ideas of co-production in English health and social care has resulted in fertile grounds for localised co-creation. However, the authors highlight that the areas Healthwatch focused on were ones where other agencies in the system recognised their limitations, and where they knew they needed help to avoid socially undesirable outcomes. As a result, the approaches taken to co-creation by Healthwatch were largely conservative and constrained. The authors state that, "Even though they were not explicitly ruled out-of-bounds, Healthwatch officers knew that to be considered legitimate and serious players in the governance of health and social care, they needed to be selective about which issues they brought to the table."
  7. Content Article
    In this Guardian opinion piece, John Harris looks at reports of people with severe eating disorders being discharged from NHS services in the East of England. He shares the stories of several patients who are desperate to recover from their eating disorders, but have been discharged from specialist services because they are not showing progress in recovery. The article looks at the growth of a narrative that suggests some patients should not be treated if their eating disorder has reached a very severe state and highlights the way that this may be affecting practice and posing a significant risk to patient safety.
  8. Content Article
    This report by the Patients Association analyses the opinions and experiences of diagnostic testing services of more than 1,000 NHS patients. It highlights that patients view diagnostics as a fundamental part of the NHS—and one that should be prioritised. Most respondents (93%) want testing capacity to be invested in over the coming years so that patients can receive tests and diagnosis more quickly. Patients place such importance on diagnostics that 60% would consider paying for the tests they need if they faced a long wait on the NHS.
  9. Event
    This webinar will explore the findings from the Patients Association's Patient Experience of Diagnostics report and consider its recommendations. The panellists are: Professor Sir Mike Richards, who was the first National Cancer Director at the Department of Health Karen Stalbow, Head of Diagnostic Policy at NHS England Dr Ashton Harper, Head of Medical Affairs at Roche Diagnostics Ltd. Patients Association Chief Executive Rachel Power will chair the session and the panel will include patients. The webinar will be held on Zoom and is free to attend. Book your place.
  10. Content Article
    This blog by Healthwatch outlines research conducted by the organisation that shows the issues homeless people face accessing the health and social care they need. The research demonstrates that homeless people: have particular problems accessing GPs and other services. experience serious problems accessing NHS dentistry. may forgo care because of the costs of travelling to appointments. often feel judged by healthcare professionals and not well cared for. The blog also discusses the impact that integrated care systems could have in improving accessibility and quality of care for homeless people.
  11. News Article
    Online services for GPs across Surrey leave many patients feeling "helpless and lost", a new report says. Healthwatch Surrey said some patients felt "defeated" by online systems and that issues were worse in certain groups. This included people with English as a second language and those less confident with technology. Online services include booking appointments, requesting repeat prescriptions and viewing test results. Healthwatch Surrey, which gathers the views of local people on health and social care services in the county, said: "Confusion around the appointment booking process and a perception that appointments are hard, or even impossible, to book online is the issue people tell us most about." One Epsom and Ewell resident was asked by their surgery to book a blood test online. They told Healthwatch: "I tried but I couldn't understand how to do it and so I called back. "I'm in my 80s and I try to be as independent as I can, but some of these processes defeat me." Sam Botsford, contract manager at Healthwatch Surrey, said communication was key in ensuring patients knew how to use online services. She said: "People feel they're being pushed online, and that spans a range of different demographics. "It's really important for practices to identify the needs of their patients and how they can best meet those." Read full story Source: BBC News, 2 February 2024
  12. Content Article
    This study published in BMJ Quality & Safety identified factors acting as barriers or enablers to the process of healthcare consent for people with intellectual disability and to understand how to make this process equitable and accessible. The study found that multiple reasons contribute to poor consent practices for people with intellectual disability in current health systems. Recommendations include addressing health professionals’ attitudes and lack of education in informed consent with clinician training, the co-production of accessible information resources and further inclusive research into informed consent for people with intellectual disability. Related reading on the hub: Accessible patient information: a key element of informed consent
  13. Content Article
    This article in The Lancet looks at the need to prioritise palliative care and medications during armed conflict. The authors argue that the Israel–Hamas conflict amplifies the dire need for access to morphine and other essential palliative care medicines included on WHO's Model Lists of Essential Medicines in order to alleviate serious health-related suffering during humanitarian crises. They outline calls that the global palliative care community has made to the World Health Organization (WHO) and other aid organisations to: add adequate oral and injectable morphine and other pain-relieving medicines in humanitarian aid response packages ensure adequate essential medicine supplies for surgery and anaesthesia provide guidelines on the safe use of essential medicines and their distribution to all aid and health workers collaborate with receiving authorities to prevent removal of controlled medicines from emergency kits include paediatric essential medicine formulations for children. They argue that opioids and other essential palliative care medicines equip health workers with the means to relieve serious health-related suffering across clinical scenarios when curative or life-saving interventions are unavailable.
  14. Content Article
    This cross-sectional study in JAMIA Open aimed to identify concerns, barriers and facilitators impacting the use of patient portals by older patients, as well as desired features in future updates. The authors held two focus group discussions culminating in an anonymous survey completed by women who were 65 years and older receiving urogynaecology care in Northwest Ohio. The authors concluded that the lack of age-aligned medical access software and products may lead to worsening digital exclusion and disparities in healthcare. Portal application developers and healthcare systems must advance efforts that consider the needs of those who are older when designing patient portals.
  15. Content Article
    D-Coded is an online resource that presents easy-to-understand summaries of diabetes research studies. It aims to make the latest knowledge and developments accessible to people who don't have a medical or scientific background. In this blog, Jazz Sethi, Founder and Director of the Diabesties Foundation and part of the global team that developed D-Coded, discusses the need for the resource and outlines how it will help people living with diabetes to better understand and manage their condition.
  16. Content Article
    Healthcare Inspectorate Wales (HIW) is the independent inspectorate of the NHS and regulator of independent healthcare in Wales. The findings of their Annual report outline the sustained pressure on healthcare services across Wales, highlighting risks relating to emergency care, staffing concerns, poor patient flow and the accessibility of appointments. It sets out how the HIW carried out their functions across Wales, seeking assurance on the quality and safety of healthcare through a range of activities. This includes inspections and review work in the NHS, and regulatory assurance work in the independent healthcare sector. The report provides a summary of what HW's work has found, the main challenges within healthcare across Wales, and HIW's view on areas of national and local concern.
  17. Content Article
    This study in the Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities aimed to  share rich detail of the emotional and physical impact on children and young people with intellectual disabilities of attending hospital, from their own and their parent's perspective. The authors found that the multiple and compounding layers of complexity surrounding hospital care of children and young people with intellectual disabilities resulted in challenges associated with loss of familiarity and routine, undergoing procedures, managing sensory overload, managing pain and having a lack of safety awareness. They concluded that an individualised approach to care is needed to overcome these issues.
  18. Content Article
    A new report published by Carers Scotland shows the devasting impact the health and social care crisis is having on the health of Scotland’s 800,000 unpaid carers. 
  19. Content Article
    TrialResults.com present the results of completed clinical trials in an easy to understand format. The site allows you to search for clinical trials related to different areas and conditions, and filter results by country and sponsor. You can they view and download a Plain English summary of each trial. It was set up by TrialAssure, a global company committed to clinical trial and human health data transparency for the entire pharmaceutical industry.
  20. Content Article
    A service providing bilingual medication information is helping to reduce healthcare inequalities and medical errors. Pharmacies across London are benefitting from the support of Written Medicine; a service providing bilingual dispensing labels in patients’ language of choice.
  21. Content Article
    The Health Equity Network (HEN) aims to build momentum for health equity across the UK. It provides an opportunity for organisations, community and voluntary groups and individuals to share their work on health equity and to engage across the country with others with the same interests. This is the report of HEN's first annual conference held on 5 October in Birmingham. The report includes links to videos of key speakers from the conference and bullet points detailing their input. It also includes brief summaries of the breakout sessions and a summary of feedback from attendees.
  22. News Article
    The Gaza Strip’s health-care system stands on the brink of collapse as bombings damage hospitals and ambulances and as generators run out of fuel, highlighting how quality medical care is a casualty of war. Dire scenarios await Gaza’s medical professionals. They face dwindling basic resources such as power, water and anesthesia, compelling doctors to confront wrenching decisions on whose lives to save. The growing humanitarian crisis is plunging health-care workers into the critical emergency planning that follows both human-made and natural disasters — assessing staffing and other resources, managing existing health needs on top of gruesome new ones, and looking out for their own welfare. “When we are in a disaster setting or conflict, we usually have more patients than resources. We have to be very creative to be able to provide the best care for the most number of people,” said Lindsey Ryan Martin, who is director of global disaster response and humanitarian action at Massachusetts General Hospital in Boston and has been monitoring the situation in Gaza. The health-care crisis extends beyond Tuesday’s deadly blast at al-Ahli Hospital in Gaza City. Aid organizations say the war continues to imperil an already beleaguered health-care system. Gaza’s Health Ministry said five hospitals were out of service as of Thursday and an additional 14 health facilities have closed because they lack fuel and electricity. Read full story Source: The Washington Post, 19 October 2023
  23. Content Article
    The benefits of giving patients a central role in developing healthcare solutions have been widely demonstrated, but meaningful engagement is still far too rare, particularly in digital healthcare. In this blog for World Patient Safety Day 2023, Clive Flashman, Chief Digital Officer at Patient Safety Learning, looks at the benefits and barriers to engaging patients in developing digital healthcare solutions. He looks at why healthcare innovators struggle to include patients at an early stage of development and suggests some ways that NHS England could help facilitate coproduction through its existing patient engagement and innovation structures.
  24. Content Article
    Sometimes groups of patients who may not engage easily with healthcare services are labelled 'hard to reach'. This graphic by artist Sonia Sparkles highlights that there are barriers in healthcare that can prevent different groups accessing services—ranging from physical access needs to lack of cultural appreciation. These barriers are often created by healthcare staff and organisations who, when designing services, fail to consider the diverse nature of the population their services are for. A wide range of graphics relating to patient safety, healthcare and quality improvement is available on the Sonia Sparkles website.
  25. Content Article
    In this BMJ article, Anna Tylor describes the assumptions she faces as someone who is visually impaired, and how healthcare professionals can make information accessible for blind and partially sighted people.
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