It happens more regularly than the startled headlines suggest. An earthquake somewhere in England rattles the crockery and wakes up citizens in the middle of the night. Later, many miles away, we read our newspapers, shake our heads in that 'well I never' sort of way, and get on with our day. But something truly seismic … Continue reading Blog: £6bn health tremors in Greater Manchester shake up national debate
The Shard went up (officially). And the NHS Commissioning Board Draft Mandate came down from on high. All on the same day. Add the odd torrential downpour with its associated misery and these could be Biblical times. I have come to the conclusion that it is my fate to be locked away somewhere remote and with an intermittent … Continue reading The NHS Commissioning Board Draft Mandate and patients in health research
This is an extract from a talk I gave on Monday to the Faculty of Medical Sciences at the University of Newcastle. I tried to answer the following question: The life sciences are seen as fundamental to the nation’s health and to economic growth. But what is the public’s role in making this happen? The … Continue reading The life sciences, the public and the growth agenda…its not just about bums on seats
The Government last week launched a public consultation seeking views on the membership of Healthwatch England. Healthwatch England will be the 'consumers champion' under the NHS reforms. It will be what they call a 'statutory committee' of the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and is expected to be up and running by the autumn. Many, including … Continue reading Government consults on Healthwatch membership
On my train journey from Edinburgh this morning, I listened to a BBC Radio Scotland phone-in about the implications of Scottish independence. The intricacies of a possible de-coupling from the UK are fascinating - from the economy to people's pensions, to the NHS. I've yet to read an article written specifically about the pros and cons … Continue reading I’ve got a pile of irony to do tonight – from Scottish independence to NHS reform
A colleague of mine put up two slides at a meeting today which neatly encapsulated for me the key strategic - perhaps translational gap - in uk clinical research right now. On the demand side, the first showed the key results from the Association of Medical Research Charities (AMRC) commissioned MORI poll of public attitudes … Continue reading You cluster if you want to…the single most important translational gap in UK clinical research today
Goodness me the nation's health must be in peril if the Royal Colleges have kicked off their slippers and downed their pipes to emerge like Dad's Army into the affray about the NHS reforms. All seems to rest now on those of their number who reside in the Upper House. How peculiarly English but ultimately unsatisfactory … Continue reading Manning and crowd weigh in on NHS reforms at the eleventh hour
We are a nation that no longer knows when to put its rubbish bins out. So I reflected, as I dragged our two overflowing wheelie bins back to their usual place. To be fair to Bromley Council, it's not that they fail to pick-up our rubbish; just that no one can quite predict what sort … Continue reading NHS reforms to face a tough round of Peer review this autumn
The summer break has clearly done the Secretary of State for Health, Andrew Lansley, a world of good. From beating a lone path as the libertarian Claudius in the face of a centralised health service, he has resurfaced this week as the man for all seasons to launch a competition for the best ideas for … Continue reading From I Claudius to iLansley…phone apps in the new NHS
I suspect you have seen today's news bulletins covering Macmillan Cancer Support's report predicting a significant rise in the number of people who will get cancer. To quote the opening lines of their statement today: Cancer rates are increasing at such a rate that research shows 42% of people who die in this country will … Continue reading Rising cancer rates and the NHS reforms…plus NIHR and ‘impact’
I've got a sneaky feeling that Andrew Lansley might be going to Cornwall on holiday giveh his overtures to the region about how the new funding allocations for the NHS will no longer penalise the county. And this is how The Guardian reported Andrew Lansley's speech to the NHS Confederation yesterday.
Here's the BBC report on how the Health and Social Care Bill will now be scrutinised following the changes announced a few weeks ago. I think other reports have mentioned people's criticisms of it going back to the committee stage for only ten days in all.
To begin with, here's more on that Pfizer story about use of mobile phone technology etc in clinical trials. It seems to have piqued an interest among many of you anyway. Also on the subject of clinical trials, I was rather perplexed by this story running out of the NHS Confederation this morning. I'm delighted … Continue reading ‘Scroll down’ for clinical trials
A reminder that David Cameron will be making five pledges on the NHS in a 'keynote' expected this week (possibly tomorrow (Tuesday)). Things like..there will be no privatisation, and an end to waiting lists etc. The Economist's 'Leviathan' blog - which is always worth a look - takes a rather derogatory view of the Prime … Continue reading Cameron’s High Five
As a self-confessed member of the worried well, I ask that people think carefully before they throw strange words at me. Particularly on the day of a regular visit to my 'prescription-happy' doctor. A colleague asked me this morning how my interregnum was going. It sent me into a momentary panic. Is it treatable I … Continue reading Flying in the face of an interregnum
The word on the street is that the Coalition Government is going back to first principles in its review of the proposals in the Health and Social Care Bill. As each day passes, the 'natural break' begins to feel more like gardening leave for a piece of legislation that was supposed to be one of … Continue reading Back to First Principles with the NHS Reforms
It is International Clinical Trials Day today and The Cochrane Library has worked with the UK Medical Research Council's Network of Hubs for Trials Methodology Research to produce a set of new podcasts about clinical trials - well worth a listen. There was a conference in Vienna this morning organised by the European Clinical Research … Continue reading International clinical trials day and a bit of mopping-up
Welcome back to those of you who left the rest of us to run the country for two weeks. I must say that I spent the Bank Holiday weekend in a verily good mood having had a quick peek at the results of our annual member survey. This showed that 98% of our members say … Continue reading Public attitudes to science survey 2011
The NHS seems to be dominating my life this week. Quite apart from the news headlines, it has involved two visits to the doctors and a blood test so far ..but I am on the mend I am pleased to report. All I can say is, a 45 minute wait for a blood test and excellent … Continue reading Department of Health about to have a Field day taking calls, I believe.
I really would encourage you to read this morning's article in The Guardian about the impact of the NHS reforms on doctor expertise and research. Its the first article that I've seen thus far which really conveys the message about health research that AMRC has been trying to put across and on which we anticipate stepping up … Continue reading NHS reforms, research and 'localism'