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Archive for 'Health Direct'

Number of long waiting hospital operations rise by 163%

The number of people facing “long waits” for hospital treatment in England has more than doubled in the past four years, figures show. Patients needing routine care such as knee and hip replacements are meant to be treated in 18 weeks under NHS rules. But the numbers waiting longer than that now top 350,000 – […]

Calls for tougher smoking and junk food rules in hospitals

There are calls for more to be done to stop people smoking at hospitals and promote healthy living. Health boards say they are powerless to enforce smoking bans on their grounds as they are not yet backed up by law. BMA Cymru said a decision had to be made on whether hospitals were “places of […]

Doctors warn over cancer op cancellations amid NHS “pressure”

Senior doctors say they are concerned about the number of cancer patients having their operations cancelled amid “tremendous pressure” facing the NHS in England this winter. Ian Eardley, from the Royal College of Surgeons, said a shortage of beds was one of the causes. Such surgery is usually protected under treatment time guidelines, he added. […]

GPs urged to commit to seven day service or lose funding

The government wants surgeries to open between 08:00 and 20:00, seven days a week, unless they can prove the demand is not there. Some GPs in England have been warned they could lose extra funding if they fail to meet their commitments to keeping surgeries open for longer. It said many patients were going to […]

NHS rejects claims of ‘humanitarian crisis’ in England’s hospitals

The NHS has disputed claims from the Red Cross that there is a “humanitarian crisis” in its hospitals in England. One of NHS England’s specialist directors said he thought the service was not “at that point” of crisis, but admitted demand was higher than ever. The Red Cross helps some hospitals with patient transport and […]

Ambulances too slow to reach 999 calls

Ambulance services are struggling to reach seriously ill and injured patients quickly enough after rising demand has left the system over-stretched. Ambulance services are struggling to reach seriously ill and injured patients quickly enough after rising demand has left the system over-stretched. Patients with life-threatening conditions – like cardiac arrests – are meant to be […]

Thousands miss out on stroke treatment

About 9,000 stroke patients a year are missing out on a treatment that can prevent disability following a stroke, say UK experts. In the UK, nearly 90,000 people each year are admitted to hospital following a stroke. Clot retrieval can restore blood flow to the brain, preventing some lasting damage, but currently only 600 patients […]

NHS will miss targets on foreign patient cost payments

The government is expected to fall well short of its target of recovering £500m a year from overseas visitors treated in NHS hospitals in England. The Department of Health has “refined” to £346m its target for 2017-18, says the National Audit Office. Some £289m was paid in 2015-16; £73m in 2012-13. A new “surcharge” for […]

Implant register launched to safeguard patients

A register of patients in England with breast and other cosmetic implants has been set up to allow them to be traced in the event of any safety concerns. The move comes after faulty Poly Implant ProthËse (PIP) silicone breast implants were recalled in 2010, affecting thousands of women. The inclusion of individual patients’ details […]

DVLA making unfair health driving licence decisions

The Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) is not making fair decisions about medical fitness-to-drive cases, a report has suggested. The Parliamentary and Health Service Ombudsman’s report found “major failings” in eight drivers’ cases. It said people’s lives had been put on hold for years because of flawed decision-making and poor communication. The DVLA said […]