The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) have published the results of a consultation with nurses and midwives on how nursing can participate in the digital transformation of health care. The RCN argue that until the NHS takes full advantage of the expertise and views of nurses – the largest single staff group in the health service – it won’t be able to realise all the benefits digital technology can bring for patients and staff.
The Royal Pharmaceutical Society have produced a consultation document on polypharmacy. The report considers problematic polypharmacy and outlines the size of the challenge, highlights good practice and makes recommendations to tackle the problem. The draft professional guidance is open for consultation until 28 August 2018.
The General Medical Council (GMC) have published the initial findings of their National Training Survey. The survey is a UK-wide poll of more than 70,000 doctors in training and doctors who act as trainers. For this report new questions were added that highlight the extent of burnout amongst doctors in training and trainers. Despite this the majority of trainees remain satisfied with their overall educational experience.
The GMC have also published a report looking at the reasons, motivations and experiences of doctors who choose to take a break during their training. The report found the three main reasons for taking a break in training were the doctors’ health and wellbeing – including their work-life balance – uncertainty about their choice of specialty and career direction, and dissatisfaction with their training environment.
The International Longevity Centre – UK (a think tank, part of the International Longevity Centre Global Alliance) have produced an economic analysis of the English flu vaccination programme. The report presents findings from a new economic model of the costs and benefits from flu vaccination in England using recent efficacy data. It introduces a conservative, static model which provides a partial cost-benefit analysis of vaccination under various scenarios. Amongst the findings it is reported that the flu vaccination averts between 180,000 and 626,000 cases of influenza per year in England and costs £50,610 per death averted.
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) have published a paper on ‘Understanding well-being inequalities: who has the poorest well-being?‘. The paper presents an analysis of the characteristics and circumstances associated with the poorest life satisfaction, feeling the things done in life are worthwhile, happiness and anxiety in the UK, from 2014 to 2016.
NHS England have launched a consultation on a programme to reduce the delivery of clinically ineffective interventions. The consultation document has been published by NHS England, NHS Clinical Commissioners, the Academy of Medical Royal Colleges, NHS Improvement and the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence. The proposal is to reduce the volume of procedures performed for seventeen specific types of intervention. Amongst the interventions included in the proposal are interventions for snoring, knee arthroscopy for osteoarthritis, haemorrhoid surgery and varicose vein surgery.
The National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) has launched 13 Policy Research Units to undertake research to inform decision-making by government and arms-length bodies. The units are intended to provide a long-term resource for policy research and a rapid-response service to provide evidence for emerging policy needs. The new units are backed by £65 million investment over five years and will begin work in January 2019.
The Centre for Health Economics (CHE) is leading two of the units: the ‘Economic Methods of Evaluation in Health and Social Care Interventions’ and the ‘Economics of Health Systems and Interface with Social Care’, along with partners at the University of Sheffield and the LSE.