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NHS & Social Care: September 2015


New transport service for critically ill children

A new combined service called WATCh – Wales and West Acute Transport for Children – will retrieve children who are critically ill or injured and require paediatric intensive care from district general hospitals.

Wales’ Chief Medical Officer Dr Ruth Hussey to retire

Dr Ruth Hussey will retire next year after nearly four years as Wales’ Chief Medical Officer and Medical Director of NHS Wales.

Survival rates for heart disease improving in Wales

Heart disease survival rates are improving thanks to improved detection and the ban on smoking in public places, according to this report.

Investment in local health services is bringing care closer to people’s homes

An investment by the Welsh Government in local health services aims to help the NHS deliver more care closer to people’s homes and to reduce pressure on hospital services.

HIW health board and NHS trust reports

Healthcare Inspectorate Wales has published annual reports for each health board and NHS trust in Wales.

Creating a healthier, happier and fairer Wales

Public Health Wales has launched a plan setting out the work it will do over the next three years to create a healthier, happier and fairer Wales for everyone.

Chief Medical Officer calls on young people to have MenACWY vaccine

Young people are being encouraged to have the meningitis ACWY vaccinewhich has recently been introduced in Wales.

Prioritising emergency ambulance services

People who need immediate life-saving care will now receive the highest-priority response in the fastest time possible from the Welsh Ambulance Service.

Introduction of MenB Immunisation for Infants

The introduction of MenB immunisation will have a significant impact on reducing cases of meningitis and septicaemia and their complications in infants.

Drugs and alcohol resources

These free resources can be used to signpost people to various resources that will help in relation to drugs and alcohol misuse.

Reduction in deaths from drug misuse in Wales

According to data from ONS the number of deaths from drug misuse in Waleshave decreased by 16% in the last year.

Which way forward for Wales?

Without either an internal market or a command-and-control approach, Marcus Longley, Director of WIHSC, outlines some ideas in a blog for theNuffield Trust.

Public Health Wales' Strategic Plan

PHW's plan sets out seven priorities to achieve a healthier, happier and fairer Wales which will benefit individuals, families and communities.


Ambitions for palliative and end of life care

This national framework urges NHS organisations and local authorities to improve end of life care for people of all ages. 

Improving length of stay

This report by the Nuffield Trust is part of a larger project undertaken by Monitor which aims to find the best ways to improve quality of care across the health system. 

Measuring hospital performance

This CHE paper proposes a way to construct an overall measure of hospital performance that everybody would be happy with.

Seven-day working: the bigger picture

Nigel Edwards of the Nuffield Trust examines the evidence behind the policy and questions whether it should it be a priority at a time of constrained funding.

Culture assessment tool

This Kings fund assessment tool can be used on its own, or in combination with a wider programme of support, to develop cultures of high-quality, compassionate and continually improving care.

A&E delays: why did patients wait longer last winter?

This Monitor report shows that hospitals across England struggled to cope with the increase in admissions because of very high occupancy rates.

Scottish waiting times increase

The dramatic rise in Scottish waiting times continues unabated, according to the latest figures released by Information Services Division Scotland. (HSJ)

Youth social action in health and social care

This toolkit takes an inclusive and broad approach to social action and volunteering.

Homeless health needs audit toolkit

This toolkit provides a step by step guide to running a health needs audit of people experiencing homelessness in your area. 

Improving maternal and child nutrition

This NICE quality standard covers improving nutrition before, during and after pregnancy (up to a year after birth) for women who may become pregnant, and for babies and pre-school children. 

Patient safety implications of GP workload

This RCGP paper makes proposals for protecting the wellbeing of GPs to prevent them becoming too exhausted to provide safe care to their patients. 

Maternal care

This resource shows how a compassionate person-centred approach to care improves clinical outcomes and the health and wellbeing of vulnerable pregnant women, newborns and infants.

Improving CAMHS

Enough analysis: make real plans for young people's mental health services argues Karen Smith.

Fast tracking change in the NHS doesn't work

Writing in the HSJ, Roger Steer argues that if leaders think they can fast track complex changes they are being misled.

Power to the staff

The key to successful leadership can only occur from the bottom up, says Pete Thomond in the HSJ.

Chronic conditions: The best care comes from listening to patients

Tailored care can help lift the burden on frontline services and improve patients’ lives but only if their feedback is taken into account, Amy Tallett and colleagues write in the HSJ.


What you miss when you take notes on a laptop

Maggy McGloin: when you use a laptop to take notes, you don’t absorb new material well because typing resulats in verbatim, mechanical transcription.

Manging smart people

Rebecca Knight: add value to them, help them advance their careers, don’t meddle too much and seek opportunities to learn from them.