Wednesday, 11 January 2012
Monday, 9 January 2012
For the day, all advertising space on the Pink News website and email newsletter will be donated to the Peter Tatchell Foundation, which promotes and protects human rights in the UK and globally. The foundation will use the estimated 300,000 spots (of varying sizes and locations) to raise awareness of its campaigns and to recruit new donors.
Thursday, 5 January 2012
David Cameron has ordered health and social care services to be brought together in order to benefit patients in a move which government advisers are calling the NHS's most urgent overhaul. At the moment, health and social care – the help given mainly to old or disabled patients to help them continue to live at home rather than in hospital or nursing homes – are different systems in England. Cameron made integration one of his five "personal NHS guarantees" last year.
NHS medical treatment and domiciliary support, which is provided mainly by local councils, are usually not joined-up. However, Cameron has told the health secretary, Andrew Lansley, to drive through changes that health policy experts claim will make life more convenient for patients, improve care and save the NHS money. The changes will lead to some hospitals closing, warned the pro-integration NHS Confederation, which represents hospitals and other major NHS employers.
The prime minister has been persuaded by senior doctors and Downing Street health advisers that, without integration, the NHS could become unsustainable due to rises in the number of patients with long-term health conditions such as obesity, diabetes and breathing problems. The first move towards creating joined-up services is likely to see Lansley tell the NHS that it has to give integration the same priority that keeping waiting lists under control has had for the last decade.
That new target is the key recommendation of a new report on integrating care by the King's Fund and Nuffield Trust health think-tank's, whose chief executives both advise Downing Street. They want the introduction of "a clear, ambitious and measurable goal to improve the experience of patients and service users, and to be delivered by a defined date. This goal would serve a similar purpose to the aim of delivering a maximum waiting time of 18 weeks for patients receiving hospital care."