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  • Mid Staffs neglect is widespread says Hunt
  • Move care for older people out of hospitals, says Nicholson
  • Analysis of human capital initiatives
  • Soubry’s sugary cereal gaffe
  • Care UK anticipates expansion of private sector role in NHS
  • Reduction on asthma-related child hospital admissions following smoking ban

5.21pm @kayewiggins tweets: “Another gem from public health minister Anna Soubry: “One bowl of sugary cereal isn’t going to do any harm if you have it once a year.”

4.28pm Hospital staff in Norfolk who drive 4x4 vehicles are changing shifts to the times with the worst staff shortages because they are better able to get through the snow to work, Nursing Times has reported (registration required). Norfolk Community Health and Care Trust chief Michael Scott praised the “determination and spirit” of his staff.

4.23pm Our sister title Nursing Times is reporting how the Royal College of Midwives has said the baby boom has pushed maternity services in the UK to a “crucial tipping point” (registration required), with midwives under intense strain and hospitals struggling to cope. In a report to be published in parliament on Tuesday, the RCM will warn that an extra 5,000 midwives were needed in England alone to deal with the highest birth rate in 40 years.

4.21pm HSJ has published a blog by Blair McPherson considering if it is harder for senior managers to be honest and open about the decisions they are making about redundancies, closures and outsourcing in an era of budget cuts, league tables and performance targets.

2.06pm: A reader comments anonymously on our story about patient leaders’ concerns about CCG lay members and patient engagement: “If any one thing will create the seeds of the next structural reorganisation it is the destruction of the governance model which has existed in the NHS for decades… How long before the Secretary of State intervenes to reimpose a majority of NEDs on Boards, and independent appointment panels?”

12.46pm The NHS Commissioning Board has added some appointments to its website, including Greater Manchester PCT cluster chief nurse Hilary Garratt as the commissioning board’s director of nursing, commissioning and health Improvement.

12.44pm Patient leaders have raised concerns about the experience and skills of lay people who have been appointed to clinical commissioning groups. The report by consultancies the Moore Adamson Craig Partnership and InHealth Associates said: “Some CCGs provided them with contracts specifying remuneration, others with expenses and others with nothing at all.”

12.39pm We have also interviewed the man in charge of councils’ bid to improve care for people with learning disability, including moves to take people out of long-stay hospitals.

12.38pm The relatively wealthy south-east and London are the main gainers in the revision of public health budgets, research by HSJ’s sister title Local Government Chronicle reveals. Read HSJ’s version of the story here.

11.44am @ProfSteveField tweets: “Next legislation should ban smoking in publicly owned spaces, including pavements.”

11.33am HSJ’s @ShaunLintern tweets, in response to Sir David Nicholson’s call for care for people with dementia to be moved out of hospital: “How many times have we heard the call for more community services? - Nicholson says more community focused care needed.”

11.29am Former chief medical officer @DonaldsonLiam tweets: “Now time for action on smoking in cars while children on board.” He was responding to this BBC story saying how admissions of children with asthma to hospital fell following the smoking ban.

10.44am The Daily Mirror has picked up HSJ’s story about the length of time it took managers at Barts and the London Trust to take criminal records checks of staff. The Mirror’s story is here.

10.38am The Financial Times is reporting that private healthcare company Care UK is gearing up for “significant expansion of the private sector’s role in the health service” with the acquisition of independent sector treatment centre provider UK Specialist Hospitals. The newspaper sites sources “familiar with the industry” as saying that Care UK will pay between £55m and £70m for the group.

10:32am The kind of neglect that disgraced Mid Staffordshire Foundation Trust exists across the NHS, health secretary Jeremy Hunt has told the Guardian. Speaking ahead of the Francis report, expected in the coming weeks, Mr Hunt said the problems could be even more widespread in the health system than he had previously acknowledged and predicted “a huge debate in the next few months following Francis about how we return all parts of the NHS to its core values of care and compassion”.

9.54am Care for older people needs a fundamental shift towards caring for them in the community rather than hospitals that are “very bad places”, the chief executive of the NHS Commissioning Board has said. Sir David Nicholson likened the situation facing older people in hospitals to the “national scandals” of the 1960s and 1970s surrounding the care of mental health patients.

7.58am: Good morning, are attempts to change behaviour at work value for money? Deneise Dadd reports on how trusts across the NHS have been implementing various human capital initiatives to improve the quality of healthcare for its older patients.