Overburdened NHS faces ‘winter of woe’, leading doctors warn

14/09/2017 Denis Campbell 0

Experts say official ‘bed blocking’ figures for England show hospitals would struggle to cope with a serious flu outbreak

Full hospitals mean the NHS is facing “a winter of woe”, leading doctors have warned, after official figures released on Thursday again showed the service struggling to cope with the growing demand for care.

A total of 181,692 bed days were lost in hospitals in England in July to “delayed transfers of care”, when patients are fit to leave but cannot be safely discharged.

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Ministers must admit that the health service can’t cope | Denis Campbell

12/09/2017 Denis Campbell 0

NHS bosses know the health service cannot meet demand and that patients are suffering, but won’t admit it

Is the NHS constitution still worth the paper it’s written on? It’s the nearest thing the health service has to tablets of stone. Its 15 pages enshrine the principles and values that should guide the conduct of the NHS in England. They say “the patient will be at the heart of everything the NHS does” and that, as a tax-funded service, decision-making should be transparent.

Sadly, on both counts, the deeds of a cash-strapped and understaffed service operating in a strange and volatile political environment are increasingly failing to match either the spirit or letter of those fine words.

Related: NHS patients waiting for hospital care top 4m for first time in a decade

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NHS warns of ‘dangerous’ beds shortage this winter

03/09/2017 Denis Campbell 0

More patients’ lives will be at risk because of long waiting periods, trusts say

Patients could die this winter because the NHS is alarmingly unprepared to deal with the surge of people who fall ill during the cold weather, hospital bosses warn today.

NHS Providers, which represents hospital trusts in England, fears lives could be lost because patients are being forced to spend long periods waiting in ambulances outside A&E, or on trolleys.

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The growing gulf in life expectancy shows how austerity has deepened inequalities

12/08/2017 Denis Campbell 0

The prime minister vowed to fight health injustice. These new figures must be a wake-up call

Public health experts sometimes rework the map of a city’s train or underground system to illustrate the wide differences in life expectancy between wealthy areas and poor ones. For example, every one of the eight stops travelled on the London tube’s Jubilee line east from Westminster, the heart of government, to post-industrial Canning Town in the East End counts for up to a year in diminished life expectancy.

In Glasgow, in the course of the seven-stop trip south-east from Jordanhill to Bridgeton, the average male life expectancy drops from 75.8 years to 61.9 years. In Newcastle upon Tyne, adults living near the airport can hope to remain free of disease and disability – to enjoy healthy life – until just before they turn 75. But a few miles east in Byker that enviable period typically ends before the official retirement age, at just 63.8 years.

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The growing gulf in life expectancy shows how austerity has deepened inequalities

12/08/2017 Denis Campbell 0

The prime minister vowed to fight health injustice. These new figures must be a wake-up call

Public health experts sometimes rework the map of a city’s train or underground system to illustrate the wide differences in life expectancy between wealthy areas and poor ones. For example, every one of the eight stops travelled on the London tube’s Jubilee line east from Westminster, the heart of government, to post-industrial Canning Town in the East End counts for up to a year in diminished life expectancy.

In Glasgow, in the course of the seven-stop trip south-east from Jordanhill to Bridgeton, the average male life expectancy drops from 75.8 years to 61.9 years. In Newcastle upon Tyne, adults living near the airport can hope to remain free of disease and disability – to enjoy healthy life – until just before they turn 75. But a few miles east in Byker that enviable period typically ends before the official retirement age, at just 63.8 years.

Continue reading…