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Archive for January, 2008

MRSA spin row as NHS publishes new superbug figures

The labour government is within touching distance of hitting its MRSA target, but opposition parties have accused ministers of manipulating the data. Latest figures show there were 1,072 cases of the superbug in England from July to September last year. This approaches the target of half the 1,925 average quarterly 2003-4 figure, but ignores the […]

NHS is paying for immigrant baby boom

The NHS is spending £350m a year to provide maternity services for foreign-born mothers, £200m more than a decade ago, the BBC and Health Direct has found. Immigration has raised the birth rate so fast that some units have closed, so that midwives could be moved to areas of urgent need. A unit in Ascot, […]

Single sex wards are broken promise Lard Darzi a Health Minister warns

Lord Darzi believes that labour’s 2002 election manifesto to promise single sex NHS wards are impossible to achieve without considerable new investment. But Lord Darzi said the labour government was committed to single sex accommodation whereby wards are divided into male and female bays by fixed partitions. Labour promised to end mixed-sex accommodation in England […]

Cancer patient runs out of time in NHS drugs funding postcode lottery

A woman suffering from breast cancer has run out of time to benefit from a potentially life extending drug which the National Health Service (NHS) denied her, even though she was prepared to pay for it. Colette Mills has been told by doctors that in the four months since she asked for the drug the […]

Labour units failing to meet maternity guidelines

More than four in ten maternity units in England offer poor or below average care, a report by the healthcare watchdog concludes today. A similar proportion of hospitals fail to carry out proper ultrasound scans to check for problems affecting developing babies in the womb, the Healthcare Commission said. Official guidelines recommend that at least […]

Sacked NHS chief wins £75000 pay-off after C Diff scandal

The sacked chief executive of an NHS trust criticised for a host of outbreaks of Clostridium difficile is to get a £75,000 pay-off, it emerged today. Alan Johnson, the Health Secretary, had been critical of the decision to award Rose Gibb a pay-off of half of her annual salary when she left Maidstone and Tunbridge […]

Cancer patients fight to stop NHS withholding care

Cancer patients have launched a legal action to prevent the NHS from withdrawing care if they seek to improve their chances of recovery by paying privately for an additional drug. The patients say the NHS will be breaching their human rights if it withdraws the treatment they are receiving. Two of the patients, Colette Mills, […]

NHS pay system risks heart attacks in the south

Centralised pay settlements in the NHS are killing heart attack patients because hospitals cannot recruit sufficient skilled staff, according to leading economists. Wage controls under which nurses’ pay is set with relatively little extra for working in London or the south-east mean that hospitals in these high-cost areas struggle to recruit and retain staff, according […]

Major study on the NHS reveals over 17,000 unnecessary deaths a year

A statistical analysis of World Health Organisation data reveals that the poor performance of the NHS is causing 17,157 deaths per year and £34 billion of extra spending under Brown has made no difference to UK mortality. Using data from the World Health Organisation and statistical techniques pioneered in the British Medical Journal, the TaxPayers’ […]

Dr Foster health information service- call for new probe

MPs should consider reopening a probe into a contentious public private health data venture Dr Foster in the light of concerns raised by a senior official involved in the deal, the shadow health secretary said. Andrew Lansley told the Financial Times he would write to the Commons public accounts committee and the Department of Health […]