A new home for NHS Watch

We’ve moved NHS Watch over from its old location to here. We’ll be working on the setup of the site over the coming weeks and hope to start posting again soon.

In the meantime, we continue to publish our regular news updates at http://www.scoop.it/t/nhswatch

Come back and visit again.

The NHS Watch Team

NHS Staff Car Park Charges

We are carrying out some research into the costs of parking for NHS Staff at the places where they work.

We have heard some amazing amounts for staff car parking charges, sometimes more than what Patients are paying to visit their relatives.

We have had a number of comments passed to us so far, but we would like to hear from ‘you’ with your stories. Any information that you send to us will be treated in the strictest confidence, sources for our surveys are not revealed.

You can contact us by email to surveys [AT] nhswatch.info or by filling in the contact form in this website.

We look forward to receiving your feedback and we’ll publish a table of information in February 2014

Hospital Food – It’s all about perception.

hospital foodThere has been a number of media stories about Hospital Food over the past few days.

It seems strange to me that any of the NHS trusts that rates themselves happy with their own Hospital Food would do so without involving the patients in their surveys. Surely the people that have to eat the food are better positioned to comment than the managers that run the hospitals!

Only in the UK could you have a ridiculous state of affairs where there is a legal minimum for quality for food served in Schools and Prisons, yet not have one for the food served in the nations hospitals. I would have thought that managers would have understood that nutrition received during a hospital stay is as important as the cleanliness & hygiene standards of the hospital.

However, I am sure that the current government will spend a few more years thinking about this before we see any action to implement a minimum standard for Hospital Food.

3D Printing and Medicine – A perfect fit!

A great story appeared last week about a revolutionary way of creating casts for broken limbs which involves the use of one of the latest technologies to hit the open market, 3D printing.

New Zealand university graduate Jake Evill started to think that there was a better way to create a cast after his hand had been enclosed in a traditional cast following a fall. So he turned his attention to the latest technology of 3D printing for a solution.

3D Cast - Copyright - Wired.com

In this interview with Wired magazine he discusses the development stage of his idea and what the next steps might be for this revolutionary step in casts for broken bones.

Mashable also reported about the 3D-Cast and have this very interesting video about Jake Skill’s idea. Time and money will tell if this is the way forward and who knows, just as you can now have new teeth implants made while you wait at the dentist, the smelly and heavy plaster casts of old may soon be consigned to the history bin as you receive your new custom-fit 3D cast.

Sir David Nicholson – Still making headlines!

With his retirement now on the horizon, Sir David Nicholson continues to make headlines. At NHS Confederation conference in Liverpool yesterday has said he wants there to be a major review of NHS strategy including further closure of services and hospitals.

Some links covering this story include:

One comment about his leaving received from Alan Woolliscroft…

How is Nicholson able to retire next year, when he clearly has not reached sixty, and I assume his job is not being made redundant? Does he operate under a different set of rules to the rest of the public sector?

It seems that Sir David Nicholson is determined to make his feelings known right up to the end. That is until he is recruited into another government funded position as a consultant!

Bevan Prize for Health and Wellbeing

Although nominations have now closed (May 15th), The Bevan Foundation has announced that the Bevan Prize  for Health and Wellbeing will be awarded in recognition of an individual and group or organisation in any part of the UK who have made an outstanding contribution to health and wellbeing in their field in 2012, who promote the founding values of the National Health Service and work to ensure equality of access and equality of health outcomes.

The aim is to establish the Prize as an annual event to celebrate the values of the NHS. The Foundation is seeking nominees from a wide range of backgrounds. Nominees could include health care practitioners; voluntary and support groups; campaigners and activists; journalists, authors or bloggers; scientists, academics or researchers. The prize will be awarded this summer at an event in London on 1 July.

Information Sharing and the NHS

Dame Fiona Caldicott recently completed the report of her independent review of information sharing in the NHS.

The background behind the review was to see how the NHS needed to strike a balance between the protection of patient information and the use & sharing of information to improve patient care.

There have been a number of reactions to it’s initial findings, but this interesting report in last weeks Computing Magazine examines some of the background issues where existing (and some new) conflicts between the different departments operating under the NHS umbrella may still prevent a successful integrating of information. Not least of all with many Patients still not wanting to have their patient records shared around the NHS organisation.

With all of us very aware of the cost of the last NHS Programme for IT (NPfIT), let’s hope that any shift in policies & procedures required to implement any changes under Caldicott won’t run up yet another huge bill for tax payers with no perceived results

You can download a full copy of the Caldicott report here.

Nurses to train in basic care for a year

It would appear that the body of this story disappeared, so we have re-written again.

Under new government initiated changes to their training, nurses look likely that they will have to spend a year on wards to train on the feeding & washing patients before they can finally qualify as fully trained nurses, this is part of the government plans to ensure compassion in hospitals. This article covers some of the changes.

However, it has emerged that the standard training courses for nurses in the UK will not be extended beyond their current three years. How this squares with the extra year for the work on the wards is not clear yet.