A nod to Nelson Mandela on the eve of the G8 Dementia Summit (agenda published)

It is no surprise that, in death as in life, Nelson Mandela has caused us to gaze upon humanity with warmth and optimism. I am sure I am not alone in having taken a great deal of pleasure from reading the celebrations of his life and reflecting on how different tomorrow would look were it not … Continue reading A nod to Nelson Mandela on the eve of the G8 Dementia Summit (agenda published)

Lock up your charity CEO the Daily Telegraph is coming

The best advice I can give charity Boards of Trustees today is: lock up your chief executive because the Daily Telegraph is after them. The newspaper known for its successful probing of MP pay and expenses is now taking aim at charity CEOs. Specifically it has gone for the heads of the charities that make … Continue reading Lock up your charity CEO the Daily Telegraph is coming

Holby City leaves transplant facts behind in search of medical drama, but why?

Nine in ten of us watch the TV at least once a week. The living room is the place where we most like to sit in front of 'the box.' And the majority of the programmes we view constitute live television. So found OFCOM in its latest research of people's media habits published two weeks … Continue reading Holby City leaves transplant facts behind in search of medical drama, but why?

Blog: We have the public to thank for this week’s well-informed decisions in health research

We have had two pieces of good news about health research of patient benefit this week. First, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) issued new guidance saying that tamoxifen or raloxifene taken daily for five years can cut breast cancer risk by 40%.  This means women at risk of developing breast cancer have … Continue reading Blog: We have the public to thank for this week’s well-informed decisions in health research

From analogue to digital patients – or how to avoid being trapped in the ‘mash-up’

If I didn't know from all the media coverage that the digital switchover was taking place in London today, then I would only have to look over my back fence into Crystal Palace Park to see them preparing for the laser show tonight at the Crystal Palace Tower.  It explains the weeks of helicopters hovering … Continue reading From analogue to digital patients – or how to avoid being trapped in the ‘mash-up’

Obama goes troubleshooting on clinical trials

Is it me or does anyone else think that No 10 could have perhaps chosen more wisely its choice of title for the new army of individuals who David Cameron says will help 'trouble' families: 'troubleshooters' doesn't sound quite right? This only a week after No 10 made a complete hash of the 24 hours … Continue reading Obama goes troubleshooting on clinical trials

Some reflections on the vCJD blood test story

The BBC's Fergus Walsh wrote an excellent blog this week about the prototype blood test for vCJD (Variant Creutzfeldt-Jakob Disease). But there is another story implicit behind it that is worth telling - what has been achieved through the fortitude of patients and scientists working together in the face of insurmountable odds.  I can not do justice … Continue reading Some reflections on the vCJD blood test story

Cable and Willetts in show of dual support

I did warn you that things would really get going this week....and with two speeches in as many days you can be forgiven if you feel as if you have taken a left hook and then a right hook in quick succession. Science Minister, David Willetts, was on the stump at a Universities UK conference today.  He used … Continue reading Cable and Willetts in show of dual support

Andrew Lansley Speeches, Office for Life Sciences etc

For those just joining us....there is a brief report on Lansley's speech on the BMA conference website.  The headline is 'Lansley promises NHS power to doctors' and I feel almost compelled to put 'Discuss' after it.  The BMA piece details Lansley's 5 Ps or priorities for the NHS. Another piece running on the Press Association … Continue reading Andrew Lansley Speeches, Office for Life Sciences etc

NICE announcement on anti-TNF therapy

Today's guidelines by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) to widen access to anti-TNF drugs for the treatment of rheumatoid arthritis has been widely welcomed by patient groups and medical research charities such as Arthritis Research UK. Those digging further into the story may be interested to know that it was researchers … Continue reading NICE announcement on anti-TNF therapy

Universities and Research

A quick post in support of this week's campaign by Universities UK called 'What's the Big Idea?'  and highlighting 'the essential role of universities in the UK and their impact on the economy, culture, society, the environment and much more.' There is both a campaign website here, and a Facebook site with some fun celebrity stuff … Continue reading Universities and Research

The Budget

This being Budget day, I couldn't help but feel that the Chancellor of the Exchequer, Alastair Darling, must have woken this morning and felt some empathy with the dung beetle with whom he was sharing the news headlines.  Those who missed this particular item on the BBC will want to know that, after months of study, the … Continue reading The Budget

Not another article about partnership

The term 'partnership' is now scattered liberally through the narrative we all use for the way in which we work - either as organisations or as individuals.  The highly inventive among us occasionally substitute it with  'collaboration' or even the more arcane 'working together,' but partnership is in the ascendant in every sense. But I am beginning to … Continue reading Not another article about partnership