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Archive for November, 2010

Andrew Lansley- an open, transparent NHS is a safer National Health Service

The health secretary Andrew Lansley explains why Dr Foster’s Hospital Guide should be welcomed by patients and NHS professionals. In the first speech I delivered as health secretary, I made one thing perfectly clear: we need a cultural shift in the NHS: from a culture responsive mainly to orders from the top down to one […]

NHS hospitals where high death rates are failing the National Health Service patients

Nineteen hospital trusts were exposed as having alarmingly high death rates in a major report that also reveals how hundreds of people are dying needlessly because of substandard NHS care. The Dr Foster hospital guide, which the Observer published exclusively yesterday, disclosed that tens of thousands of patients were harmed in hospital last year when […]

Maternity postcode lottery revealed in NHS figures

Midwives have criticised the postcode lottery in maternity care after official NHS figures revealed caesarean rates are twice as high in some hospitals as others. In some cases even neighbouring hospitals have widely varying rates of caesarean section, revealing that it is not necessarily down to the characteristics of the local population. The proportion of […]

Cancer patients abandoned after treatment

The number of cancer patients being admitted to hospital through accident and emergency has doubled in less than a decade amid claims they are being “abandoned” after receiving treatment. Such admissions are meant to be “the exception” but the number has increased from 70,000 in 2000/01 to 140,000 in 2008/09, according to the National Audit […]

GP appointments could be booked via central call centre

Patients could be forced to make doctors’ appointments through remote call centres under an efficiency drive to save the NHS £600 million. A report commissioned by the Department of Health says GPs’ administrative support teams should be radically altered to cut costs. The plan would involve centralising appointment bookings through a national call centre, clearing […]

Ministers broke midwife pledge claims RCM

The Royal College of Midwives (RCM) has accused the government of backing down on a pre-election pledge to increase midwife numbers in England. It says mothers and babies will suffer unless the 3,000 extra midwives it says were promised are delivered by 2014. RCM general secretary Cathy Warwick told its annual conference there are too […]

Breast examinations- call to extend screenings

Annual breat screening for women in their 40s with a family history of breast cancer may save lives, research suggests. The NHS breast screening programme currently offers mammograms to women aged between 50 and 70. But UK researchers say a pilot study suggests regular mammograms should be given to younger women who have relatives with […]

Major NHS websites suffer lack of awareness

A new study to better understand what prevents people from using information technology to help them manage their health and care has found that few people have even heard of the three major NHS health information websites. The study commissioned by Connecting for Health, looked at how social groups who may be excluded from electronic […]

Emergency patients let down by labour targets, say surgeons

Emergency patients are being let down by the health service because managers are more concerned with meeting targets by treating those with appointments, the heads of Royal Colleges warn. In a letter to The Daily Telegraph, some of the country’s most senior doctors say they are “deeply frustrated” at the low priority given to Accident […]

Statin increase will save lives

Raising the dose of cholesterol lowering statin drugs could prevent many more heart attacks and strokes, say researchers. UK and Australian teams compared a standard statin treatment with a more intensive therapy, publishing results in the Lancet medical journal. They concluded that higher doses cut heart attacks and deaths by 13%. Experts warned that a […]