South Devon Healthcare Foundation Trust launches internal investigation into its chief executive Paula Vasco-Knight after a tribunal last week found the trust covered up “nepotism” claims against her.
5.55pm South Devon Healthcare Foundation Trust has launched an internal investigation into its chief executive Paula Vasco-Knight after a tribunal last week found the trust covered up “nepotism” claims against her.
3.58pm NHS Employers and NHS England are accepting submissions for the “Kate Granger award for compassionate care”.
The awards are dedicated to the role played by compassion in providing high quality care, and are named after Kate Granger, who has blogged about her own experiences of care.
Submissions will be assessed by Dr Kate Granger and an NHS judging panel. You can find out more about the award, and how to make a submission (deadline 14 February), here.
2.44pm Cochrane, an international not-for-profit network dedicated to making research evidence useful for informing decisions about health, is making £2.5 million available over the next three years for anyone with a visionary idea that could help the organisation deliver its mission in the future.
2.22pm Andy Burnham and Jeremy Hunt have already spoken in the Commons debate. Mr Burnham said the government had “legislated for fragmentation” in the Health and Social Care Act 2012 and had introduced “market madeness” to the NHS.
In his response, Jeremy Hunt made an argument very similar to that put forward in a piece which Bill Morgan recently wrote for HSJ; namely that the Office for Fair Trading already had powers to enforce competition law under the Enterprise Act 2002.
2.14pm The House of Commons is currently debating competition in the NHS. You can follow the debate, which Andy Burnham brought to the House, here.
2.06pm A new approach to community services in Nottingham is changing the way care is delivered to older people and providing tangible social benefits, Stephen Upton and Adele Cresswell write for HSJ.
1.46pm Michael White’s latest politics column is now online. Michael discusses how with the care.data scheme, the “wholesome socialising of our trusted GP’s files for “approved research” intersects with fears for privacy and commercial exploitation”.
1.37pm Jeremy Hunt tried to appoint a former Conservative chief whip as chair of food regulator the Food Standards Agency last autumn but had to back down when ministers in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland objected, The Guardian reports.
11.57am A doctor was stabbed in the neck in an attack while he was working at a medical practice in West Bromwich, the Express and Star reports.
The GP was holding a surgery at Linkway Medical Practice when the assault happened. Patients said they saw him run from his room holding his neck.
Police said the doctor, in his 30s, was taken to hospital where he underwent surgery for a knife wound.
He has now been discharged from hospital and is expected to make a full recovery.
A 65-year-old man from Smethwick was due to appear before Sandwell magistrates today charged with wounding and possession of a weapon in a public place.
11.48am Sticking with the subject of mental health, social affairs writer Mary O’Hara argues in The Guardian that mental wellbeing needs to be tackled first before it can lead to care crisis.
“Barely a week goes by without another sign that mental health services are strained to breaking point as people turn to them in greater numbers and as beds and staff are cut,” she writes.
“This is serious stuff. Providing a safe and appropriate environment for people should be at the core of care. However, while the focus on crisis care is vital, so too are the less visible and less extreme aspects of facing life with mental health difficulties.”
11.47am A lot of health content in The Guardian today. The novelist Clare Allen writes that to achieve parity of esteem in mental health, there needs to be greater fuss made about spending cuts.
She argues: “Why is it that the NHS feels able to target mental health? Because they know there’ll be a lot less fuss than were they to cut funding for diabetes or cancer care. Let’s prove them wrong.”
11.38am The Guardian also reports on criticism made by the Care Quality Commission towards a privately run urgent care centre in Croydon run by Virgin Care.
The report describes how “patients were streamed for treatment by non-clinical reception staff. We were concerned that there was a risk of a patient with a serious illness or injury being wrongly streamed and their condition deteriorating. We were concerned that the streaming policy as carried out at the Croydon Urgent Care Centre could potentially put people at risk”.
11.34am Returning to the papers, The Guardian reports that nearly two thirds of adults in England are obese, according to data from Public Health England.
The data also identifies Copeland in Cumbria as having the highest number of overweight people in England, with 75.9 per cent classes as overweight or obese.
11.20am Patients are not being given clear enough information about what will happen to their personal health records under a new NHS data mining scheme, the Information Commissioner’s office has warned.
While patients have the right to opt out of having their information collected for the care.data scheme, Dawn Monaghan, strategic liaison group manager from the Information Commissioner’s office, raised concerns about what people were being told about the changes.
11.14am Over 800 patients suspected of having cancer could have had their diagnosis delayed because of an administrative error, a hospital trust has admitted.
West Hertfordshire Hospitals Trust said at least one person may have died as a result of the mistakes and 121 patients are still yet to have their case reviewed.
Between January 2010 and November 2013 patients who failed to turn up for their first appointment after being urgently referred for cancer tests were not always offered a second appointment and in some cases were discharged by the trust - in contravention of NHS guidelines.
11.10am Outsourcing firm Serco has insisted it remains committed to directly providing community care services after signing a deal with another care firm to advise it on its troubled Suffolk contract.
The Health and Social Care Information Centre is drawing up a technology strategy in a move predicted to put it on a collision course with NHS England, James Illman reports
10:57am NHS England has spent about £258m a year on GP services with no identifiable justification, a review has found.
PMS contracts, for which income is agreed locally, were introduced as an alternative to nationally agreed general medical services contracts in the late 1990s. About 45 per cent of all GP practices now have PMS contracts.
NHS England examined what practices were being paid for and identified what it described as a “PMS premium” − the amount that PMS practices are being paid over and above what they would receive if on a GMS contract.
The “good” impact, Alastair argues, is that “much more attention is being paid to the relationship between how an organisation operates and the quality of care it delivers”.
However, he says that in the year since the Francis report was published, national debate about the NHS has become “resolutely focused on the negative”, even though “there is no robust evidence NHS care overall is declining”. He warns that debate urgently needs “rebalancing”.
10.16am Continuing the Francis effect theme, Sarah Calkin has found clear evidence “that staff wellbeing and organisational culture are being taken more seriously by acute trust boards, one year after the Francis report was released”.
HSJ asked acute trusts about their approach to culture, patient safety and nursing − all major aspects of the report − and received freedom of information responses from 104 of them.
Over two thirds of respondents recruited staff based on their values as well as their competencies, in line with one of Mr Francis’s recommendations.
However, Sarah’s research also found that a quarter of trusts are allowing healthcare assistants to start work on the wards without undergoing any training for the job.
10.10am Turning through the papers today, The Daily Telegraph has a piece written by Jeremy Hunt. The health secretary, writing one year on from when Robert Francis QC published his report on Stafford Hospital, claims that a “Francis effect” has resulted in a “tangible shift in priorities in our hospitals”.
Mr Hunt says: “The NHS is crossing the Rubicon, with compassionate care starting to replace tick-box targets on boards and wards”.
9.50am HSJ is holding a webinar on competition at 12.30 today. Click here to join in later.
7.00am Hello and welcome to HSJ Live. We start things off with news that the Care Quality Commission has said it currently lacks the skills to deliver a new duty of “market oversight” of the adult social care sector.
HSJ’s Will Hazell reports that the regulator is likely to become responsible for monitoring a small number of “difficult to replace providers” from April 2015.