News from NHS Networks: 15 March 2013

Patient Information Conference in its eighth year

The government’s information strategy asserts that “access to good quality information… is an important health and care service in its own right”. It is a powerful statement, but what does it mean and how do we deliver?

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Regulations on procurement, patient choice and competition

The regulations laid last month have been amended in light of concerns expressed by GPs and others.

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Interim arrangements for NHS CB number two

The NHS Commissioning Board has announced interim arrangements for the post of chief operating officer and deputy chief executive.

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Mental health panel issues new guides

Advice and support for commissioners.

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The patient online: the road map

This guidance from RCGP supports GP practices to provide online access for patients.

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New network launched for rehabilitation professionals

A new network has been launched to bring together all qualified rehabilitation workers in the UK.

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New operating model for the commissioning of offender health care

The NHS Commissioning Board (NHS CB) has published the single operating model for the commissioning of offender health services.

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Bulletin for proposed CCGs: 7 March 2013

Latest CCG bulletin from the NHS Commissioning Board.

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Resources to improve research information for patients

Resource pack to help NHS trusts raise awareness of clinical research among patients and carers, and deliver on the NHS constitution commitment to provide research information supporting patient choice.

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Best practice for managing medicines shortages in secondary care

These standards provide advice to NHS hospitals in England in managing medicines shortages at local level to minimise any risks to patients through delays to treatment.

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Chief medical officer warns over antibiotics

The second volume of the CMO’s annual report covers the threat of antimicrobial resistance and infectious diseases.

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GP-led groups ready to take charge of NHS budgets in every community in England

NHS Commissioning Board establishes fourth and final wave of clinical commissioning groups.

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March issue of Commissioning Excellence

Commissioning support needs to be focused on transformation not on transactions, according to Bob Ricketts, the man in charge of commissioning support at the NHS CB.

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What’s worrying your CCG?

CCGs have no shortage of challenges as they prepare to take the reins on 1 April. Initial responses to the survey point to predictable concerns about the financial pressures on CCGs but some more surprisingly relaxed attitudes in other areas – about the ability to engage with other organisations, for example.

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Healthy phone apps

The NHS Commissioning Board has launched a library of apps to help people manage their health.

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England to host international initiative for mental health leadership in 2014

Norman Lamb, minister of state for care services has accepted an invitation for England to host the 2014 exchange.

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CQC second care update

Care for people with dementia is not meeting their needs as services are struggling to cope, according to the latest care update from Care Quality Commission.

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Patient and public engagement: still an aspiration?

Engaging with patients and public is vital if NHS and social care organisations are to achieve outcomes, improve quality of services and strengthen bonds with local communities.

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Local Healthwatch regulations explained

Document to help local Healthwatch audiences understand the legal requirements that have been set out in regulations.

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Commissioning an integrated footcare pathway

Key recommendations for CCGs to help reduce diabetic amputations by 50%.

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New book by Ben Goldacre: Bad Pharma

A extract from The Economist: Q&A with Ben Goldacre whose previous book Bad Science is included in our library stock.
“ALONG with lawyers, estate agents and journalists, the pharmaceutical industry occupies an unenviable position near the bottom of the public’s affections. Ask people why, though, and they may find the reasons for their disdain hard to pin down.

Ben Goldacre, a British doctor and author, knows exactly what is wrong. “Medicine is broken,” he declares in his new book, “Bad Pharma”, before cataloguing the ways in which secrecy and laziness keep doctors ignorant about just what the drugs they prescribe are doing to their patients. Pharmaceutical firms routinely bury unflattering trial results and publish only the good ones. Those trials are run on unrepresentative patients, with dodgy statistical analysis, and then pushed on doctors with advertising budgets that are often bigger than those of the firms’ research-and-development arms.”

Opioid prescribing for cancer pain

Opioid prescribing for cancer pain during the last 3 months of life: associated factors and 9-year trends in a nationwide United Kingdom cohort study

Posted: 10 Dec 2012 12:00 AM PST

Source: Journal of Clinical Oncology

Purpose: To determine time trends and characteristics associated with opioid analgesic prescribing to patients with cancer who are approaching the end of life.

Patients and Methods: This population-based cohort study used data on 29,825 patients diagnosed with five common cancers – lung (34.2%), colorectal (19.9%), female breast (21.6%), prostate (19.1%) and head and neck (5.2%) – in the United Kingdom General Practice Research Database (GPRD) who died between 2000 and 2008.  Opioid prescription rates in the last 3 months of life were described.  Characteristics associated with opioid prescribing were investigated by using generalised estimation equation models. Results: In the last 3 months of life, 43.6% (95% CI, 43.0% to 44.2%) of patients received at least one prescription of opioids: morphine (33.4%; 95% CI, 32.8% to 33.9%), diamorphine (11.6%; 95% CI, 11.2% to 11.9%) and fentanyl family (10.2%; 95% CI, 9.8% to 10.5%).  Over time, prescription rates …