Health and Wellbeing Policy News 7th-13th August 2016

There's a fuller list of the health and wellbeing policy news items for the current quarter here, but some of the more significant items of the week are:

08 August 2016
The 'troubled families' programme has had no discernible effect on unemployment, truancy or criminality,  according to an unpublished evaluation report, a senior civil servant has told BBC's Newsnight programme.  The report is by an independent consultancy, Ecorys, which examined data from 56 local authorities.  The £1.3bn scheme has had two phases, the first to help 120,000 families at a cost of £400m and the second a further 400,000 families at a cost of £900m.  A previous assessment said that 117,000 families had been 'turned around', saving £1.2bn.
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/aug/08/13bn-troubled-families-scheme-has-had-no-discernible-impact

11 August 2016
The NHS monthly performance figures show targets still being missed in England, with delayed discharges 23% higher than the same month last year. 59% of the delays were due to the NHS, 32% social care and 7.9% joint.  The proportion of those seen in A&E within four hours rose slightly from 90.2% in May to 90.5%, although for just hospital A&Es the figure was 85.8%.  It was the busiest June on record, with A&E attendances up by 2.1% on the same month last year and emergency admissions 4.7% higher.  The ambulance target for responding to the most serious cases within eight minutes was missed for the 13th month in a row, at 69% compared to the target of 75%.  NHS Providers Chief Executive Chris Hopson said that the NHS cannot cope on its existing funding levels.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-37044278
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/aug/11/nhs-england-misses-key-targets-june
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/aug/11/british-medical-association-call-for-action-on-bed-blocking
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3734619/NHS-meltdown-continues-E-departments-busier-bed-blocking-hits-record-high.html
http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/health-news/ae-staffing-crisis-level-nhs-hospitals-miss-waiting-times-a7185186.html
https://www.nhsproviders.org/news-blogs/news/time-for-a-reality-check-about-what-the-nhs-can-deliver
https://www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/combined-performance-summary/

11 August 2016
Almost 9 in 10 GPs and other practice staff find their work life stressful, with a third feeling that admitting to being overly stressed would make them seem less capable to their colleagues, according to a survey of 1,004 practice staff, including 111 GPs as well as practice nurses and practice managers, by Dods Research for Mind.  Over half (54%) of GPs and other staff said that workplace stress had affected their physically health and 21% said it had led them to develop a mental health problem.  While 88% of primary care workers found their work life stressful, the equivalent figure for for the wider UK workforce is only 56%.
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/aug/11/nine-in-10-gp-practice-staff-work-life-stressful-poll-mind
http://www.pulsetoday.co.uk/your-practice/battling-burnout/more-than-half-of-gps-and-practice-staff-suffer-stress-related-physical-illness/20032489.article
(Rgn) http://www.nursingtimes.net/7009885.article
http://www.mind.org.uk/news-campaigns/news/mind-finds-worrying-levels-of-stress-among-primary-care-staff/.V674-IWpheU

12 August 2016
The Junior Doctors' Committee of the BMA has asked its full council to authorise more industrial action from early September, saying that ministers have failed to address concerns about the contract which the Government is imposing from October after its rejection by 58% of relevant BMA members.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-37056306
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/aug/12/junior-doctors-consider-further-strikes-in-contract-dispute
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-3735544/Junior-doctors-set-mount-strikes-rejecting-Health-Secretary-Jeremy-Hunt-s-proposed-contract.html

10 August 2016
The supply of A&E doctors is not keeping up with demand, according to the Royal College of Emergency Medicine.  The United Lincolnshire hospitals NHS trust has said it may need to close A&E wards at night because of the shortage of emergency doctors.  There have also been problems at the North Middlesex hospital.  NHS Providers said there is not enough money for the NHS to provide what it is being asked for.
https://www.theguardian.com/society/2016/aug/10/hospital-a-and-e-crisis-shortage-emergency-doctors
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-lincolnshire-37026000
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/health/article-3732894/It-s-crunch-time-NHS-Financial-crisis-means-hospitals-face-dilemma-slashing-services-like-E-offering-worse-care.html

10 August 2016
Sustainability and transformation plans are not being made public and are even being kept from GPs' representatives, Pulse Magazine reports.  The magazine asked all of the 44 areas to share their plans and all refused.
http://www.pulsetoday.co.uk/home/finance-and-practice-life-news/gps-excluded-from-consultations-over-secret-plans-for-general-practice/20032477.article

10 August 2016
The two week referral target for psychosis is not being fully implemented by a quarter of CCGs, according to responses from 170 of the 209 CCGs to a Liberal Democrat freedom of information request.  Of those responding, 23% said they had only applied the target to 14-35 year olds.  The target, which applies to 14-65 year olds experiencing their first experience of psychosis, was introduced in April 2016.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-37022701
(11/08/16) Official statistics on 'early intervention in psychosis waiting times': https://www.england.nhs.uk/statistics/statistical-work-areas/eip-waiting-times/

11 August 2016
More than a third (34%) of female students have mental health problems, compared to a fifth (19%) of male undergraduates, according to a survey by YouGov of 1,061 students.  Overall, 27% of students had a mental health problem.  For LGBT students the figure was 45%.  Of those with mental health difficulties, 47% say they have difficulty completing some daily tasks.  The most common mental health problems are depression (77%) and anxiety (74%).  The next most common is eating disorders, at 14%.
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/education-37037532
https://yougov.co.uk/news/2016/08/09/quarter-britains-students-are-afflicted-mental-hea/

12 August 2016
A third of trusts warned by NHS Improvement of their 'excess pay growth' had been told by the CQC within the previous year to increase staffing, according to an analysis by the HSJ of CQC reports.  The highlighting of high pay growth was made in the context of the 'reset' aimed at reducing costs, although NHSI have since acknowledged that there may be good reasons for the increases.  Of the 63 providers identified as having a high pay bill, 32 had had CQC inspection reports within the previous year and in 22 of these they were told to improve staffing levels either across the organisation or within specific departments.
(Rgn) http://www.nursingtimes.net/7009930.article

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