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Found 172 results
  1. News Article
    The NHS's "insufficient" critical care capacity has been laid bare by the pandemic, with the UK having one of the lowest number of beds per head in Europe, NHS Providers has said. The group, which represents trusts in England, is calling for a review of the health service's capacity. The UK has 7.3 critical care beds per 100,000 people, compared to Germany's 33.8 and the US's 34.3, analysis found. The government said it was investing £72bn in the next two years in the NHS. "The UK is towards the bottom of the European League table for critical care beds per head of populat
  2. News Article
    Hospitals across London are racing to tackle a backlog of tens of thousands of urgent operations that need to be carried out in the coming weeks to prevent patients dying or losing limbs, The Independent has learnt. The slow decline in Covid patient numbers means many hospitals across the capital are warning they will still be relying on extra staff, and “surge” beds opened at the height of the crisis, well into March. NHS bosses have been briefed that across the city there are about 15,000 priority two (P2) patients. These are classed as needing urgent surgery, including for cancer,
  3. News Article
    Staff at a Midlands hospital trust told regulators they had repeatedly raised safety concerns internally without action being taken. The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has downgraded maternity services at Worcestershire Acute Hospital from “good” to “requires improvement” following an inspection prompted by the whistleblowers’ concerns. Staff had reported “continuously escalating” staffing level concerns to senior managers, but said they got “no response”. Some said they were fearful of raising concerns internally. Whistleblowers also reported delays to induction of labour, with
  4. Content Article
    It’s been a really difficult time for all of us this past year. When I say ‘we’, I mean every single person on the planet. I am yet to find anyone who hasn’t had to deal with stress, mental health problems, anxiety, illness, disappointment or bereavement of some nature over the past year. Collectively, we are all going to need a period to heal. I fear that the healthcare system will have no time to heal and that we are only on the tip of what more there is to come. Not only has the healthcare system had to deal with a pandemic, we have had to deal with the consequences from that. The
  5. News Article
    Elective activity levels were significantly lower in January than were achieved before Christmas, according to provisional NHS data seen by HSJ. In the three weeks to 20 December, the NHS was reporting around 110,000 day cases and 18,000 ordinary admissions each week. But during January these totals dropped to around 85,000 day cases and 10,000 ordinary admissions per week. This equates to a reduction of 23% and 44%, respectively. Regions that were more severely impacted by the third wave of coronavirus saw steeper reductions as covid pressures forced staff working in routine care se
  6. News Article
    Maternity staff are facing extreme burnout during the pandemic as staff shortages and longer, busier shift patterns lead to the workforce becoming increasingly overwhelmed, healthcare leaders warned. Senior figures working in pregnancy services told The Independent healthcare professionals are working longer hours, covering extra shifts around the clock, and spending more time on call to compensate for increasing numbers of employees taking time off work after getting coronavirus. Staff say stress-related absences have reached “worryingly” high levels, with junior doctors and midwive
  7. News Article
    Dozens and potentially hundreds of urgent operations for children have been cancelled during the third wave of the covid pandemic, HSJ can reveal. There are also concerns that national guidance for prioritising surgery “disadvantages” young people. Several well placed sources told HSJ that urgent operations for children have been delayed in recent weeks because of covid pressures. This is because of a combination of staff being diverted to help with adults sick with covid, and space in children’s facilities — including intensive care — being taken over for adult covid care, as well a
  8. News Article
    Cancer services at large hospital trust have been at ‘catastrophic’ risk of being overwhelmed, after two of its hospital sites had to suspend life-saving cancer surgeries in the last month due to COVID-19. In its latest board papers Mid and South Essex Foundation Trust rated the “cancellation of cancer elective activity” at its highest risk level of 25 – which based on their own risk-scoring key is “catastrophic”. It said the expected consequences at this risk level include “permanent disability or death, serious irreversible health effects” and an “unacceptable… quality of service”.
  9. News Article
    Mental health services in England do not have the capacity to cope with the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on children, Anne Longfield, the children’s commissioner for England, has warned. Despite an expansion in the four years before the pandemic, the supply of treatment for child mental health problems was already falling well short of demand, with referrals rising 35%, but treatments only increasing by 4%, the watchdog said as she called for a “rocket boost” in funding. Longfield cited an NHS study before the latest national lockdown, which found one in six children had a prob
  10. News Article
    London’s largest acute trust has been accused of ‘emotional blackmail’ by suggesting junior doctors could do voluntary shifts in its ‘really short staffed’ critical care unit. In an email cascaded to all junior doctors at Whipps Cross Hospital, run by Barts Health Trust, hospital medical director Heather Noble said day and night shifts at another trust site, the Royal London Hospital, “really need cover”. She said doctors could work overtime through a “voluntary or paid shift”, and that if they made contact, should “state whether or not they want to be paid”. Doctors working at
  11. News Article
    There were 800 fewer cancer surgeries in the first two weeks of January than usually take place during the period, according to provisional data seen by HSJ. The bulk of this reduction came in London and the surrounding counties such as Essex, Bedfordshire, and Surrey. London and the south east have been severely hit by coronavirus pressures, causing widely reported mass cancellations of non-urgent elective surgery. However, the impact on cancer cases has, so far, been less clear. NHS England has insisted in the last week that urgent cancer cases should be given the same priorit
  12. News Article
    The chief executive of a small acute trust has described the “terrifying situation” faced by ambulance crews and hospital staff in trying to provide adequate emergency care as coronavirus threatens to overwhelm the local NHS services. Susan Gilby, of Countess of Chester Hospital Foundation Trust, told HSJ staff are seeing “tragic and potentially avoidable” instances where patients with COVID-19 have reached the emergency department too late. She suggested this is due to a combination of patients waiting too long to call 999, and then having to wait long periods for an ambulance to ar
  13. News Article
    NHS bosses have instructed hospitals to keep performing urgent cancer surgery despite Covid pressures, after a growing number cancelled procedures because they did not have enough intensive care beds or available staff. They have told England’s regional directors of cancer to ensure treatment of people who need cancer surgery within four weeks gets the same priority as care of patients who have Covid. The move was unveiled in a letter, obtained by HSJ, sent last Friday by Amanda Pritchard, the chief operating officer at NHS England and NHS Improvement. It was also signed by Cally Pal
  14. News Article
    A London hospital is being forced to send patients back to ambulances for treatment due to an ‘overwhelming’ number of Covid patients on ICU wards, according to a frontline doctor. The medic, who asked to remain anonymous, said A&E staff are "running" into waiting ambulances to treat patients there until space becomes available. He said: "It’s not the fault of the staff, but the sheer numbers are so unprecedented and being full like this means that you just have to do your best to adapt. But it’s not the standard (of care) I signed up to." "It’s extremely stressful for us to
  15. News Article
    Nearly a quarter of a million people have been waiting more than a year for operations and other hospital procedures, HSJ has learned. Official NHS England data for November, released on Thursday, showed 192,000 patients had been waiting for treatment for more than a year. However, figures leaked to HSJ of weekly data up to 3 January showed a steep increase to 223,000 patients — the highest reported so far throughout the COVID-19 pandemic and before. According to the leak, just under 4.2 million people are waiting for treatment, of which year-long waiters comprise 5.4%. The dat
  16. News Article
    Patients are missing out on potentially life-saving organ transplant surgery because hospital intensive care beds are filled by coronavirus patients, The Independent has learnt. Major organ transplant centres in London, as well as the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Birmingham and Addenbrooke’s Hospital in Cambridge, have been forced to close their doors to transplant cases because of a lack of beds, the increased risk to patients, and the need to redeploy doctors and nurses to the coronavirus front line. The impact on organ transplant services follows hundreds of urgent cancer operation
  17. News Article
    NHS England has asked hospitals across the country to open hundreds more intensive care beds so they can take in patients from the hardest hit areas, to prevent those patches having to ration access. A letter sent to dozens of acute trusts today by NHS England asks them to enact their “maximum surge” for critical care from tomorrow, opening up hundreds of beds, which will rely on them redeploying staff and cancelling more planned care. The letter is to trusts in the Midlands but HSJ understands a similar approach is being taken in the other regions where critical care is not currentl
  18. News Article
    Private hospitals are ‘pushing back’ on requests from NHS trusts to send them more NHS patients, following a change to the national contract with the independent sector, and amid high pressure from COVID-19. Manchester University Foundation Trust, one of the largest NHS providers, has reported difficulties in accessing capacity at its local Spire, BMI and Ramsay hospitals this month. It comes as the NHS is facing “unthinkable” pressures from coronavirus patients, with dozens of hospitals on the brink of being overwhelmed. Throughout most of 2020, the bulk of private providers in
  19. News Article
    More than 1,000 people needing urgent cancer surgery in London have no date for their treatment, HSJ can reveal. A document leaked to HSJ showed that, at the end of last week, more than 1,000 of London’s cancer surgery patients without an appointment date were defined as P2 (priority two), meaning they needed to be seen within four weeks or risk their condition worsening. The report seen by HSJ also showed more than 300 P2 patients had their surgery postponed in the past week, a statistic NHS England London has so far refused to disclose. Hospitals in the capital are facing thei
  20. News Article
    More than a third of critical care units in the East of England are either at or have exceeded their maximum surge capacity, information leaked to HSJ reveals, and all but one are above their normal capacity. Data from the region’s critical care network shows that as of 11 January, seven of the region’s 19 critical care units were either at 100% of, or had exceeded, what is known as ”maximum safe surge” capacity. This represents the limit of safe care, mostly based on available staffing levels. The units have opened more beds, but they require dilution of normal staffing levels. Acro
  21. News Article
    NHS England has told hospitals in the Midlands to further dilute their staffing ratios so critical care capacity can be doubled, HSJ has learned. In a letter sent on 9 January to the boards of all trusts in the region, national leaders said they needed to “dilute nursing ratios beyond the current ask of 1:2” to achieve the significant increase in capacity. In November, all trusts in England were told they could dilute staffing ratios in critical care from the standard one nurse to one patient ratio, to one nurse to two patients. Informal reports from around the country suggest some t
  22. News Article
    A hospital's oxygen supply has "reached a critical situation" due to rising numbers of COVID-19 infections. A document shared with the BBC showed Southend Hospital has had to reduce the amount it uses to treat patients. It said the target range for oxygen levels that should be in patients' blood had been cut from 92% to a baseline of 88-92%. Hospital managing director, Yvonne Blucher, said it was "working to manage" the situation. "We are experiencing high demand for oxygen because of rising numbers of inpatients with Covid-19 and we are working to manage this," she said. R
  23. News Article
    The Becker's Clinical Leadership & Infection Control editorial team chose the top 10 patient safety issues for healthcare leaders to prioritise in 2021, presented below in no particular order, based on news, study findings and trends reported in the past year. COVID-19 Healthcare staffing shortages Missed and delayed diagnoses Drug and medicine supply shortages Low vaccination coverage and disease resurgance Clinical burnout Health equity Healthcare-associated infections Surgical mistakes Standardising safety efforts. Read ful
  24. News Article
    Hospital chiefs in the South West have warned the region will not avoid the extreme pressures felt by other parts of the NHS amid rapidly rising numbers of COVID-19 inpatients. The region was the least affected area of England during the pandemic’s first wave, but the medical director of two acute trusts yesterday predicted a “tidal wave” of COVID-19 coming to the West Country. Adrian Harris, medical director at Royal Devon and Exeter Foundation Trust and Northern Devon Healthcare Trust (NDHT), said the region faced an “absolute crisis” and individual trusts would be “hanging on by t
  25. News Article
    Patients calling NHS 111 in London could face a 30-hour wait before being admitted to a hospital bed, the capital’s ambulance service has warned. Slides presented by London Ambulance Service Trust at a webinar with NHS London this week showed “category three” patients faced long delays at all stages of the process. The length of each stage was said to be as follows: having calls answered at 111 centres (20 mins); the “revalidation” of the call before it is passed to 999 (two hours); 10 to 12 hour waits for an ambulance; and similar waits in emergency departments before being admitted
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