Winter Pressures

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Exclusive: NHS England spends millions to send patients private over winter

NHS England and Improvement have allocated millions of pounds to outsource elective and diagnostic work to the independent sector, in an attempt to keep waiting lists down during the winter, HSJ has learned.

A&E

Five trusts fail four-hour target in more than half of A&E cases

An unprecedented five trusts saw less than half of their accident and emergency attendances within four hours in December, HSJ analysis reveals.

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Official figures ‘deceptive’ on intensive care pressures, doctors warn

Intensive care units are under far greater pressure than is reflected by NHS England’s official data with many trusts already recording 100 per cent bed occupancy, specialty leaders have warned.

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Exclusive: Trial A&E target ‘driving completely the wrong behaviours’

A new accident and emergency target which could be introduced early next year is “driving completely the wrong behaviours”, senior clinicians have told HSJ.

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Mackey: Staff care about workload and belonging, not systems

The former NHS Improvement chief executive has said he cannot explain system working to staff as they “don’t care” and are more concerned about whether they have “enough colleagues to get through the workload of the day”.

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All major trusts miss four-hour target as performance plunges across NHS

Not one of the NHS’ major hospital trusts hit the four-hour 95 per cent standard in November as performance across core metrics plummeted to new lows in the face of record demand.

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Trusts told to offer pensions tax deal to senior clinicians

Trusts have been given the green light to offer a stop-gap “solution” to their senior clinicians which aims to tackle the pensions crisis gripping the health service.

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Norovirus closes 1,100 hospital beds as flu arrives early

Hospitals in England have been forced to close more than 1,100 hospital beds over the last week because of norovirus — almost double the number than during the same period last year.

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Children’s flu programme back on track after delays

Officials have restarted the distribution of a Flu vaccine for one million children following “concerning delays”.

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Exclusive: NHS scrambles funding to help hospitals with winter crisis

The health service is scrambling to provide additional funding to some hospitals to mitigate a crisis in emergency departments – despite the government not providing a formal “winter fund” this year – HSJ has learned.

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Pensions crisis ‘washing away’ medical students boost, says top doctor

The NHS pensions crisis has almost “washed away” the benefit from the government expanding medical trainee numbers and opening new medical schools, one of the UK’s top doctors has warned.

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NHSE moves closer to four-hour target overhaul

NHS England appears increasingly likely to recommend a major overhaul — and potential scrapping — of the four-hour accident and emergency target, statements issued today suggest.