Published: 15/07/2004, Volume II3, No. 5914 Page

Looking back at the week's top stories - as reported by HSJ and its predecessor titles

From the Poor Law Officers' Journal, 15 July 1904

The Rev Samuel Trueman, MA, who had a brilliant University career, has died in the Chilton Union Workhouse, at Temple Cloud, near Bristol. The deceased graduated at St John's College, Cambridge, and was ordained in 1849. After holding curacies in Norfolk he became Headmaster of a School at Ormskirk, and was afterwards Rector of Nempnett, Somerset, for nearly thirty years. He relinquished the living in 1886, and a few years after, owing to reserves which left him penniless, he sought the assistance of the Poor Law, and became an inmate of Clutton Workhouse. He was buried at Nempnett.

From the Hospital and Social Service Journal, 16 July 1952

The mental health committee of the SouthWest Metropolitan Board have considered a report by the Regional Psychiatrist drawing attention to the blocking of beds by patients well enough to leave but lacking accommodation to which they could be discharged. It is considered that with a large proportion of the senile patients admitted, psychiatric breakdown would almost certainly been prevented had they been given welfare facilities at an earlier date.

From the Health Service Journal, 16 July 1994 Auditors this week criticised as 'unlawful' use of public money in a major privatisation drive.

The report says Trent regional health authority unlawfully guaranteed to supply work to firms employing former RHA staff. Between 1988 and 1992, it awarded them contracts totalling£7.5m without competition. Shadow health secretary David Blunkett said: 'The report highlights the effects of the government's dogma of privatisation and the dilemma it presents for senior management.'

IT Update: At least 60 trusts have applied to take part in the NHS Executive's latest idea to stimulate the development of hospital computers. The Electronic Patient Record project is a three-year research and development programme. The Executive's information management group said the research would 'feed into the development of the next generation of clinical systems, which will be widely available in seven to 10 years.