Guest Editorials

This section features in-depth analysis of current NHS affairs and your reaction to them. Check back here regularly for the latest insights.

13

Jan

NHS Ombudsman Calls for Service Development Feedback | Ben Miller

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NHS Ombudsman Calls for Service Development Feedback

10

Jul

An Unwelcome Gift! | Dr Paul Lambden

Dr Paul Lambden makes a powerful case for clinical complaints to be viewed differently from system complaints - and reveals the risks posed by the current public mind-set.

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An Unwelcome Gift!

14

Apr

A Framework for Future Proofing | Nick Jones

'Study the past if you would divine the future'. Confucius.
The NHS past is littered with the bodies of less than successful IT projects and yet technology holds an increasingly important key to the future. In this latest blog from the Tomorrow's Leaders Network, Nick Jones interviews NHSE Digital Clinical Champion Dr Clive Prince to divine some digital wisdom about the future for the digital NHS.

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A Framework for Future Proofing

28

Feb

Sharing patient data – a medical necessity or a commercial exploitation | Maria Murray, Salix & Co

Salix's Maria Murray reviews the care.data controversy

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Sharing patient data – a medical necessity or a commercial exploitation

13

Feb

The Life of Brian | Angus Wrixon

There is a great deal more to Professor Sir Brian Jarman than hospital 'death rates', as Angus Wrixon discovered at our recent HealthChat event

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The Life of Brian

05

Feb

Dark Corners of the NHS No 32: A Dodgy Joint Venture | BE

In the last of the Dark Corners series for now, our Special correspondent highlights the pitfalls of rushed joint ventures. 'The intent was good but the implementation was flawed'. A common enough tale in the NHS and a fitting end to the Dark Corners series, at least for now.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 32: A Dodgy Joint Venture

04

Feb

Dark Corners of the NHS No 31: The Fastest Gynaecologist in the West | BE

'Oh, when will they ever learn', asked the late, great Pete Seeger ( in Where Have All The Flowers Gone?). Our Special Correspondent is not sure they have, 18 years later.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 31: The Fastest Gynaecologist in the West

04

Feb

The Impending Doom! | Krishna Kasaraneni

The workforce crisis in General Practice could have profound effects on the future of the NHS. In this exclusive editorial a GP trainee offers some robust views about the way forward.

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The Impending Doom!

30

Jan

Dark Corners of the NHS No 30: Ma Blackstone and the Private Wing | BE

On the theme of the old days being a different country, this fascinating tale from our Special Correspondent certainly shows how much has changed in the past 40 years. For better or worse? You be the judge.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 30: Ma Blackstone and the Private Wing

28

Jan

The NHS of the past was a foreign country: we did things differently there | Stephen Thornton

Not like it was in the old days? When I were a lad ...... Don't believe a word of it, says Stephen Thornton in this exclusive guest editorial, telling it like it really was.

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The NHS of the past was a foreign country: we did things differently there

27

Jan

The international attack on Beveridge-model health care (and the purpose of CCGs) | Dr Lucy Reynolds

Since we first published this powerful, explosive and revealing guest editorial, there has been a growing realisation that the international trade rules which are driving marketisation, the political collusion behind them and the lack of transparency for the general public are all likely to have a profound effect on the NHS. We republish the article today with some new material added.

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The international attack on Beveridge-model health care (and the purpose of CCGs)

24

Jan

Dark Corners of the NHS No 29: NHS prepares for DESERT STORM | BE

As the UK pulls troops out of Afghanistan, our Special Correspondent throws light on behind-the-scenes preparations for an earlier war.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 29:  NHS prepares for DESERT STORM

24

Jan

Have I got (good) news for you? | Jo Ward

The NHS seems to have become a regular 'whipping boy' for politicians and the media - but it doesn't work like that in other countries.

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Have I got (good) news for you?

22

Jan

Inject This into Places Where You Shouldn’t | Nicole Skeltys

Here's an idea for NHS Change Day - and one with a serious message about ambulance paramedics - that will knock yer socks off!

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Inject This into Places Where You Shouldn’t

22

Jan

Is this where we are heading? | Dr Lucy Reynolds

Back in November, Lucy Reynolds wrote a Guest Editorial about the impact the upcoming US-EU trade agreement is likely to have on the 'marketisation' of UK healthcare. Here, she highlights a potential real life example, with help from someone who works with the US healthcare system.

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Is this where we are heading?

19

Jan

“My work is done” is no mantra for modern-day healthcare | Professor Justin Waring

Discharge from hospital is not an end in itself, more the end of one phase of the patient's 'journey' and the beginning of the next. A comprehensive 2 year study led by Nottingham University's Business School has come up with findings of real significance to everyone involved in the process. Prof Waring sumarises the results for us in this fascinating and important editorial.

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“My work is done” is no mantra for modern-day healthcare

16

Jan

Dark Corners of the NHS No 28: Clostridium Difficile at Maidstone | BE

Some of the current problems besetting the NHS have been around longer than is comfortable. So, what can we learn from the past? In this case, it seems we have learned to focus on an important issue affecting patient safety but not necessarily how to deal with difficult situations when they arise.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 28: Clostridium Difficile at Maidstone

16

Jan

Respect .. give it a try | Dr Partha Kar

How people treat each other at work is a key issue in generating high quality outcomes and in job satisfaction. Hard on the heels of Sam Jones's blog yesterday, Partha Kar, in his own blog, looks at how lack of respect for colleagues may be a barrier to success.

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Respect .. give it a try

15

Jan

Honest Conversations | Samantha Jones

Now here is an idea whose time has surely come - people talking to each other, with honesty and realism. In this excellent, exclusive blog Sam Jones sets out some clear perspectives on what it takes to get it right for patients in a complex and challenging system.

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Honest Conversations

14

Jan

Even £3.7bn doesn’t buy NHS dentistry which is fit for purpose | Keith Hayes

Can it really be true that so much money buys only a service which is shot full of compromises and is not even available to all? Take a look at this and see for yourself.

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Even £3.7bn doesn’t buy NHS dentistry which is fit for purpose

14

Jan

What is Management? | Michael Somerton

There are many definitions of management but rarely do we see reference to self management. Mike Somerton looks at the theory and the practice and shows how self management can add value for patients and job satisfaction for staff.

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What is Management?

12

Jan

Dark Corners of the NHS No 27: Food Poisoning at Stanley Royd Hospital | BE

Our Special Correspondent grubs around at the back of the fridge to bring you another lesson from the archives of NHS management, this time with a significant impact on NHS Crown Immunity

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 27: Food Poisoning at Stanley Royd Hospital

12

Jan

Mental Health and informal care: Maybe now, finally, we can start polishing our hidden gems | Professor Paul Crawford

The appointment of Lord Victor Adebowale as chair of the Parity of Esteem Board should bring some urgent focus to mental health. But it's only a start, as Prof Crawford explains in this exclusive editorial looking at the significant paradigm shifts which are really required.

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Mental Health and informal care: Maybe now, finally, we can start polishing our hidden gems

09

Jan

Whose NHS it is anyway? Practical Approaches to Patient and Public Involvement | Dr Brian Fisher

Here is a fabulous summary of approaches to patient and public involvement, with extensive references and links, from a man who knows more about it than most. A superb resource for everyone engaged in managing health services

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Whose NHS it is anyway? Practical Approaches to Patient and Public Involvement

07

Jan

A Health Lesson from History | Jaci Joyce

Started on your New Year diet? Not yet? Even if you are not going to, you must read this great story with a surprising twist, excellent links and a very timely punchline.

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A Health Lesson from History

03

Jan

Dark Corners of the NHS No 26: SMOKING – Dirty Games at the Ministry | BE

If your New Year resolution is to give up smoking you've got to read this. And for those of us planning to shed a few pounds, the parallels with the food industry are also quite striking. Our Special Correspondent does it again!

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 26: SMOKING – Dirty Games at the Ministry

03

Jan

NHS in England: market competition and health care | David Lawrence

The NHS used to be based on collaboration and co-operation; and now it is a partly marketised service. David Lawrence explains why this is really not good for our health.

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NHS in England: market competition and health care

03

Jan

Is there a democratic deficit in the NHS? | Roger Steer

The People's Inquiry into London's Health Services, the legal case over the proposed Lewisham closure, the Secretary of State's current proposal to change the law on reconfiguration all raise serious questions for public participation and democracy. In this very thoughtful and thought provoking editorial, Roger Steer explores the issues and suggests there is another way.

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Is there a democratic deficit in the NHS?

19

Dec

The NHS Ghost of Christmas Future | Nicole Skeltys

... if I stay out till quarter to three, would you lock the door?
Will you still need me will you still feed me, when I'm ..... 68??

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The NHS Ghost of Christmas Future

16

Dec

The Treasury’s Black Sheep—the NHS | Prof Nick Bosanquet

In this thought provoking editorial contribution, Nick Bosanquet argues that the Chancellor missed the opportunity in his autumn statement to define the role of the NHS in terms of supporting economic growth rather than as just a cost centre.

This article originally appeared in the Huffington Post on 10 December 2013 and is reproduced here with the author's kind permission.

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The Treasury’s Black Sheep—the NHS

15

Dec

Breaking the cycle | Adrian Stokes

Desperate time require desperate measures. As beds clog up and patient care could be compromised, one large acute Trust is taking a radical approach to breaking the vicious cycle. We wish them well and look forward to hearing of a successful outcome.

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Breaking the cycle

12

Dec

Dark Corners of the NHS No 25: The Bedford Bodies | BE

With winter upon us, be careful that those who have passed on don't come back and bite you in the rear. Our Special Correspondent pulls back the covers to reveal a dark tale with unexpected and far-reaching consequences

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 25: The Bedford Bodies

12

Dec

Make it happen | Dr Partha Kar

A powerful patient story - a call to action to CCGs - to be bold, to grab the opportunities - from a hospital consultant!

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Make it happen

10

Dec

Knowledge-brokering and closing the learning gap | Professor Justin Waring

The Francis Report pointed out that the methods hospitals use to capture and share information do not always work. In this important editorial contribution, using the results from an extensive observational study, Prof Waring describes ways in which improvement and innovation throughout healthcare can be significantly enhanced.

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Knowledge-brokering and closing the learning gap

08

Dec

The Modern Family Doctor and the Future of General Practice | Dr Peter Swinyard

In this exclusive editorial for nhsManagers.network, the Chairman of the Family Doctor Association explores one of the most fraught - and most important - issues in our current healthcare system.

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The Modern Family Doctor and the Future of General Practice

08

Dec

The Perfect Week | Mark Ellis

The NHS really is the most fabulous organisation. In the face of constant media negativity and very challenging times, it's still possible to achieve improved care and outcomes for patients, with a bit of focus and hard work. Read this and get your week off to a good start.

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The Perfect Week

04

Dec

People’s Inquiry into London’s NHS: Interim Feedback | Roger Steer

Whether or not you work in London, this is an absolute must read as it has lessons for the whole of the NHS. Roger Steer very helpfully provides an excellent and informative interim report on the People's Inquiry.

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People’s Inquiry into London’s NHS: Interim Feedback

02

Dec

Why let the facts get in the way of a good headline? (aka The Breakfast Blockers) | Nick Marcangelo

Fed up with Social Services delaying all your discharges? Fed up with bed blockers' Read this then maybe have a look in the mirror.

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Why let the facts get in the way of a good headline? (aka The Breakfast Blockers)

01

Dec

Dark Corners of the NHS No 24: Death In Restraint | BE

Here is a tragic story from the last decade which does not reflect well on the NHS at the time but which did lead to positive changes. Yet one wonders whether discrimination against BME patients has really reduced as much as we like to believe.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 24: Death In Restraint

29

Nov

The Hospital Inspector comes … or possibly not | A Nearly Applicant

An open letter to the Chief Inspector of Hospitals, Sir Mike Richards from a highly credible candidate, explaining why he won't be applying after all. You gotta read this.

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The Hospital Inspector comes … or possibly not

28

Nov

Nursing staff deja vu | Brian Mackley

The use of simple nurse to patient minimum numbers is not a helpful way to get the best care for patients. There are other tried and tested methodologies which have been used in the health service for years, as Brian Mackley reminds us in this exclusive and helpful editorial.

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Nursing staff deja vu

21

Nov

Whatever Happened to Good Old Population Planning? | Angela Nisbet

Restructuring is one thing, reforming another. Only by re-introducing whole population planning will the system be truly reformed, argues Angie Nisbet in this editorial for nhsManagers network

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Whatever Happened to Good Old Population Planning?

19

Nov

Reflections from a hospital ward | Anon

Our author, who prefers to remain anonymous has penned, in his own words, a 'comment and whinge' from his vantage point on an NHS hospital ward. Right after the Government's response on Francis, this is definitely worth a read.

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Reflections from a hospital ward

19

Nov

Competition lawyers trump the NHS | Trevor Cheeseman

Sir David Nicholson has raised the role of competition with the Health Select Committee and set off a few fireworks in the process, according to our commentator Trevor Cheeseman. This is explosive stuff.

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Competition lawyers trump the NHS

17

Nov

What’s wrong with English hospitals nowadays? | Dr Lucy Reynolds

In the wake of the recent revelations from Colchester Hospital and the news that they have now been put into 'special measures', Dr Reynolds sets out some very clear and challenging answers to her own question. This is a hard-hitting, informative and revealing editorial written exclusively for our website.

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What’s wrong with English hospitals nowadays?

13

Nov

Is NHS reconfiguration so bad? | Dr Marilyn Plant

Last week Roger Steer, in his article ‘Reconfiguring Health Services and the Law' argued that the NHS had yet to produce a convincing case in its favour. In an exclusive editorial, Dr Marilyn Plant argues strongly in the opposite direction.

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Is NHS reconfiguration so bad?

11

Nov

Echoes of the Bristol Child Heart Scandal at Colchester | Martin Young

Martin Young from Michelmores Solicitors explores whether the common thread linking the Bristol Heart scandal all those years ago and the current Colchester case is actually the role of whistle blowers; and whether whistle blowers, as a mechanism, need to be more integrated into the system.

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Echoes of the Bristol Child Heart Scandal at Colchester

11

Nov

Dark Corners of the NHS No 23: Normansfield Hospital | BE

Shining a light on this dark corner of NHS history, our Special Correspondent illuminates so many issues that resonate today. This story needs to be read by everyone connected with the health service, from front line staff to members of the Board.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 23: Normansfield Hospital

10

Nov

In the Boardroom: Hubris Syndrome | Professor Brian Edwards

In the latest of his occasional series, Prof Edwards examines a little reported but potentially significant personality issue which can substantially affect boardroom behaviour.

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In the Boardroom: Hubris Syndrome

06

Nov

Survive and Thrive | David Grant

If you want to know how critical the attitude of doctors and other health care professionals is to cancer patients, listen to a man who knows only too well, as he relates some of his first hand experiences..

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Survive and Thrive

06

Nov

Risk, Bullying and the Terror of Targets | Prof Chris Newdick

Another day, another story about a hospital mis-reporting against a target; this time cancer waits. Even if managers are cowed and bullied by government, why are clinicians so pliant? In this insightful analysis for nhsManagers.network, Chris Newdick suggests some powerful reasons.

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Risk, Bullying and the Terror of Targets

05

Nov

A&E – it’s also a marketing problem. | Ian Mills

The airwaves are once again full of stories about impending A&E doom this winter. Why so many people go to A&E instead of the alternatives seems to be baffling great minds across the land. But maybe there is a simple explanation after all
In this fascinating article for nhsManagers.network, Ian Mills explains the power of the A&E brand and the impact on our behaviour.

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A&E – it’s also a marketing problem.

03

Nov

Reconfiguring Health Services and the Law | Roger Steer

Reconfiguration of health services is a subject unlikely to go away any time soon. But where does the law stand and just how much rubbish is uttered in the name of quality and efficiency? Roger Steer looks at the evidence.

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Reconfiguring Health Services and the Law

31

Oct

Dark Corners of the NHS No 22: The Wessex Computer Scandal | BE

IT disasters in the public sector have become all too common. Our special correspondent reminds uf of where it all began for the NHS.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 22: The Wessex Computer Scandal

30

Oct

Hello my name is … | Samantha Jones

On the day Kate Granger completes her last clinical shift, we publish this insightful and moving blog from Sam Jones.

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Hello my name is …

29

Oct

Not Open or Transparent | Richard Bourne

Spurious 'commercial confidentiality' rules in procurement - ok? Oh no it's not. Time for a fight back says Richard Bourne.

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Not Open or Transparent

27

Oct

Simon says – ‘yes’! | Dr Jenny Simpson

We need Simon Stevens to succeed. Will we help him or hinder?

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Simon says – ‘yes’!

21

Oct

The Spirit of ’45 | Nicole Skeltys

If you have ever wondered how we got here from the original motivations that led to the birth of the NHS, read this exclusive blog from Nicole Skeltys - then send it to your MP, your manager, your Chief Executive, the man from the CQC, the woman from Monitor ....... and Simon Stevens.

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The Spirit of ’45

22

Oct

The Lure of Overseas Medical Treatment | Laurence Vick

Medical tourism is back in the news. In an article originally prepared for the Aesthetika clinic, Michelmores' Laurence Vick looks from the other end of the telescope and warns of the dangers of travelling abroad for surgery.

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The Lure of Overseas Medical Treatment

21

Oct

Dark Corners of the NHS No 21: An Honourable Resignation | BE

Ambulance services in the north east were in the news in the past few days, being bailed out by the Police apparently. This time, our Special Correspondent turns the clock back to 1996 and shines his light on some unhappy times at North Yorkshire Ambulance Service.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 21: An Honourable Resignation

18

Oct

I’m only a patient | Verite Reilly Collins

On Friday, Roy blogged about managers capturing and using real patient experiences. In an exclusive editorial for nhsManagers.network. Verite Reilly Collins suggests that if you want to save money, ask a patient. Sounds like a crazy idea. After all, what do patients know?

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I’m only a patient

16

Oct

The greatest challenge facing the NHS | Matthew Bryant

Improving care for the increasing number of frail older people is arguably the greatest challenge facing the NHS. In an exclusive editorial for nhsManagers network, Matthew Bryant looks at how one hospital in an area with a high proportion of elderly people is challenging some well established assumptions.

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The greatest challenge facing the NHS

15

Oct

Dark Corners of the NHS No. 20: London Ambulance Service | BE

When the Computer Aided Dispatch System went down, the balloon went up.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No. 20: London Ambulance Service

10

Oct

Letter from America October 2013 | Professor Brian Edwards

President Obama's healthcare reforms are the root cause of the Republican shut down of American public services. In his latest Letter from America, Brian Edwards brings us up to date with some insightful analysis.

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Letter from America October 2013

10

Oct

Arrogance, Ideology, Rewards and Inequalities in the NHS | Andy Spring

The people of this country deserve to have great health services that are the envy of the world, claims Andy Spring in this thoughtful editorial for nhsManagers.network. But are arrogance and ideology taking us increasingly in the wrong direction?

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Arrogance, Ideology, Rewards and Inequalities in the NHS

09

Oct

Search for a Chief Executive | Professor Brian Edwards

What should NHS England be looking for in its new Chief Executive. In an exclusive editorial for nhsManagers.network, Brian Edwards sets out his thinking.

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Search for a Chief Executive

06

Oct

Living in the aftermath | Dr Janet Williamson

What happens when you try to amalgamate 5 different quality focused organisations into one? How do you keep the best of each and create a functioning whole? Janet Williamson describes what's been going on.

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Living in the aftermath

06

Oct

Outside Looking In | Joanna Ward

We do still manage to recruit some fabulous people to our Graduate Management Training Scheme. In an exclusive blog for nhsManagers.network, Joanna Ward looks back at the NHS from her external placement. Do we like what we see in the mirror she is holding up?

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Outside Looking In

03

Oct

A Radical Care Pathway for ME/CFS | Nancy Blake

Much maligned and misunderstood, ME gets a radical makeover in this exclusive editorial for nhsManagers.network. But is this pathway really so radical? Perhaps only if you are a healthcare professional!

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A Radical Care Pathway for ME/CFS

02

Oct

Dark Corners of the NHS No 19: Thalidomide | BE

Thalidomide, originally marketed as a sleeping pill, caused a wide variety of birth defects when taken by pregnant women. . Our Special Correspondent shines his light on one of the best known and most tragic cases of inappropriate drug licensing.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 19: Thalidomide

01

Oct

A vacuum that must be filled | A response from the primary shop floor

The Prime Minister has announced that the Government will set up pilots of 8-8 working in primary care. But where will all the GPs come from? And how can they be afforded?
Our correspondent on the front line laments the weakness of the DH and the stranglehold of the BMA & Royal Colleges on medical training places; and claims this puts England in the worst position in Europe for access to qualified doctors.

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A vacuum that must be filled

01

Oct

Primary Care – Heart of the NHS | Phil Hawthorn

The NHS is very good at chasing the latest big idea and then falling over because its shoes are on the wrong feet! Getting the basics right is an essential prerequisite to creating the space for innovation and progress, argues Phil Hawthorn in this exclusive editorial.

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Primary Care – Heart of the NHS

30

Sep

Compellingly persuasive? | Ian Collacott

Flu vaccination for NHS staff - to compel or not to compel, that is the debate that is raging. Here, in an exclusive editorial for nhsManagers.net, Ian Collacott sets the debate in a wider and deeper perspective.

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Compellingly persuasive?

30

Sep

NHS Adult Audiology Services: the Mythical Beast | Dr Gareth Smith

How does Any Qualified Provider fit into the myriad other available commissioning tools, and crucially does it deliver - and for whom? Gareth Smith looks at it from the audiology perspective.

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NHS Adult Audiology Services: the Mythical Beast

27

Sep

A silo-free zone (aka Daisy’s Bootcamp Report) | Angus Wrixon

The recent nhsManagers.network 'bootcamp' with Dame Ruth Carnall and Roy Lilley provided some laughs, some great stories - and more than a little wisdom. Angus Wrixon from Salix Consulting tells the tale.

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A silo-free zone (aka Daisy’s Bootcamp Report)

26

Sep

Dark Corners of the NHS No 18: Industrial Action | BE

In the week when the Fire Brigades Union held a half day strike, memories of past industrial action in the NHS are stirred by our Special Correspondent.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 18: Industrial Action

26

Sep

HURRAH FOR HOME AND COMFORT | Lynn Young

'There is nothing like staying at home for real comfort', said Jane Austen. And for health and well-being, she might have added.

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HURRAH FOR HOME AND COMFORT

22

Sep

Dark Corners of the NHS 17: Dr John Bodkin Adams | BE

Oooh, this is a juicy one! Our Special Correspondent opens the Police files and sees dark deeds and a criminal trial, in another chapter in our fabulous Dark Corners series.

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Dark Corners of the NHS 17: Dr John Bodkin Adams

19

Sep

‘Vorsprung durch technik’ – a new motto for the NHS? | Jenny Kay

Are there still things the NHS can learn from the motor industry? Jenny Kay went to the Audi plant at Neckarsulm to find out.

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‘Vorsprung durch technik’ – a new motto for the NHS?

19

Sep

Dark Corners of the NHS No 16: Trouble in Bath | BE

Think it's tough being an NHS Manager these days? It was ever thus, as our Special Correspondent reveals in this 10 year old tale of trouble and strife

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 16: Trouble in Bath

17

Sep

The Porter’s Tale – when listening is not enough. | Jaci Joyce

Sometimes there is just too much pomposity in NHS staff hierarchies. Leadership is needed at every level, not just the top.

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The Porter’s Tale – when listening is not enough.

17

Sep

Two Simple Ideas | Nerys Cadvan-Jones

Very often, the simplest things make the biggest difference. Here are two simple things the NHS could do to save money and aid patients' recovery

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Two Simple Ideas

15

Sep

Why HSMR May be Dangerous to Your Health | Richard Bourne

Why bother with HSMR at all? The arguments rage back and forth. In an exclusive editorial for nhsManagers.network, Richard Bourne tries to see through the fog.

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Why HSMR May be Dangerous to Your Health

14

Sep

UK vs USA Hospital Death Rates | Prof Brian Jarman

Brian Jarman has been in the news again, this time raising questions about the differences in mortality rates between UK and US hospitals. In this exclusive editorial, Professor Jarman goes beyond the headlines and explains the figures, the caveats and his motivations.

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UK vs USA Hospital Death Rates

12

Sep

Letter from Europe: Orphan Drugs and Rare Diseases | Professor Brian Edwards

In the first of an occasional series about the EU, Prof Edwards offers some fascinating insights on the important role the EU plays in rare diseases and orphan drugs. Who knew (apart from the French)?

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Letter from Europe: Orphan Drugs and Rare Diseases

10

Sep

The Friends and Family test – moving the debate forward | Toby Knightley-Day

Given the controversy around the Friends and Family Test, can it become a useful tool to aid transparency and quality improvement? Writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, one of the people behind its design offers some great advice.

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The Friends and Family test – moving the debate forward

10

Sep

Leadership of what and for whom? | Annabelle Mark

To all those graduating from the NHS Management Scheme and anyone else moving into a leadership role, Annabelle Mark offers some timely and sound advice.

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Leadership of what and for whom?

08

Sep

Personal Health Budgets – Freedom or Fetters | Julie Reay

Personal budgets in healthcare can be liberating, but bring unforeseen challenges too, as Julie Reay explains in this fascinating and personal editorial for nhsManagers.network

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Personal Health Budgets – Freedom or Fetters

08

Sep

Operation Onion: | Samantha Jones

Sam Jones's personal reflections on Operation Onion, written exclusively for nhsManagers.network, show how a relentless focus on patients and a consistent approach to taking action are played out daily, rather than being a simple but meaningless mantra.

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Operation Onion:

05

Sep

Dark Corners of the NHS No 15: Guy’s Hospital | BE

Another peek into a dark corner of the past by our Special Correspondent reveals some pretty incompetent management.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 15: Guy’s Hospital

05

Sep

All Chiefs and No Indians? | Jaci Joyce

Leadership from the front line? Leadership from patients? In this exclusive editorial, there is revolutionary talk afoot.

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All Chiefs and No Indians?

03

Sep

Well, are we less compassionate? | Lynn Young

There's no room for complacency but really, was there ever a golden age of compassion? Nurse and regular contributor Lynn Young has a different take on the prevailing zeitgeist.

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Well, are we less compassionate?

02

Sep

Sustainable Health Care | Isobel Braithwaite

The health challenges of climate change are likely to be significant - not in some distant time but within the working lives of many, if not most of our readers. Writing for nhsManagers.network, Isobel Braithwaite challenges us to think and act differently

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Sustainable Health Care

01

Sep

Three Monday Mornings | Dr Jenny Simpson

Monday mornings not your favourite time of the week? Read this story of fabulous leadership and fabulous care; and think again.

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Three Monday Mornings

01

Sep

Beware Zombies in the Land of the CCG | Andrew Craig

Extending life support for the zombies that are CSUs is a proposal too far; and in the wrong direction at that,argues Andrew Craig in this exclusive editorial.

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Beware Zombies in the Land of the CCG

29

Aug

A new GP model: revolution or evolution? | Glen Burley

Instead of a new employment model for GPs, it may be better to look at a completely different payment model, to incentivise changed behaviours, argues Glen Burley in this exclusive article for nhsManagers.

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A new GP model: revolution or evolution?

27

Aug

Dark Corners of the NHS No.14: Management culture in NHS Lothian | BE

Shining his light on another dark corner of the recent past, our Special Correspondent sees parallels with the Stafford story.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No.14: Management culture in NHS Lothian

27

Aug

Leadership and the front line | Chris Lake

Contrary to the prevailing media attitude, the NHS is magnificent, says Chris Lake. Here he describes a very personal experience of just how magnificent - and what happens when staff have the space to do the very best they can.

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Leadership and the front line

25

Aug

Managing Change in the NHS | Richard Biurne

Managing change in the NHS has always been messy. Richard Bourne gets to the nub of it.

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Managing Change in the NHS

21

Aug

Registered Nurse Patient Ratios (RNPRs): so important, so contentious | Professor Jennifer Hunt

We expect our clinical care to be evidence based so why is there such reluctance to implement substantial evidence of the impact of Registered Nurse staffing on important outcomes? Writing exclusively for us, Jenny Hunt comprehensively presents the evidence and makes the case.

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Registered Nurse Patient Ratios (RNPRs): so important, so contentious

21

Aug

The District Nursing workforce is part of the solution – but only if there are enough of them | Crystal Oldman

In this exclusive and authoritative article the Chief Executive of the Queen's Nursing Institute adds a powerful community perspective to the critique of nursing numbers.

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The District Nursing workforce is part of the solution – but only if there are enough of them

20

Aug

General Practice at tipping point | Dr Clare Gerada

Writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, Dr Clare Gerada, Chair of the RCGP Council, claims that general practice has reached the point where only more resources will save the day.

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General Practice at tipping point

18

Aug

The Friends and Family Test – lets just get on with it! | Janet Butterworth

There are really only 5 things you need to know to make it work, says Janet Butterworth

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The Friends and Family Test – lets just get on with it!

15

Aug

The problem of saying the obvious | Roger Steer

Challenging the status quo and heavy weight vested interests seems to be a challenge for politicians and journalists. Roger Steer, writing exclusively for nhsManagers.net, goes where others fear to tread in search of the Holy Grail of hospital quality.

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The problem of saying the obvious

15

Aug

Letter from America: Merger Mania | Professor Brian Edwards

Hospitals across America are being swept up in the biggest wave of mergers since the 1990’s. In his second Letter from America for readers of nhsManagers.network, Prof Edwards examines some potential lessons for the UK.

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Letter from America: Merger Mania

13

Aug

Complaints: creating a win-win | Sara Harvey

You can see complaints as a process to be managed; or you can create a win-win. A Practice Manager in East Anglia shows us the way. We need to clone her and her approach!

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Complaints: creating a win-win

12

Aug

The mysterious case of the disappearing deaths | Dr Rod Jones

Dr Rod Jones, writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, looks further into this seriously important topic.

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The mysterious case of the disappearing deaths

11

Aug

Dark Corners of the NHS No. 13: Fiddling the Figures | BE

If you ever wondered where the culture of fear and hitting targets at all costs came from, this is a great place to start looking. No. 13 in the series from our Special Correspondent was not so lucky for some

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Dark Corners of the NHS No. 13: Fiddling the Figures

08

Aug

New money: Postgraduate Medical Training in England | Jaci Joyce

Writing exclusively for us here at nhsManagers.network, Jaci Joyce traces the recent history of postgraduate medical education funding and sketches a possible parallel with the Keogh Report

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New money: Postgraduate Medical Training in England

06

Aug

Dark Corners of the NHS No. 12: Purchasing the Read Codes | BE

Our Special Correspondent with an eye for a juicy tale from the past examines a different sort of procurement

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Dark Corners of the NHS No. 12: Purchasing the Read Codes

04

Aug

The Courage of Carers | Lynn Young

The story of Jacky Ashley has inspired Lynn Young to remember the plight and courage of carers

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The Courage of Carers

31

Jul

Boardroom Briefing: If it don’t work don’t commission it! | Professor Brian Edwards

Taking lessons from the USA does not always come easily in the UK but this excellent and informative advice for Boards from Brian Edwards is too important to ignore.

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Boardroom Briefing: If it don’t work don’t commission it!

30

Jul

Dark Corners of the NHS No. 11: Tayside and the Kilshaw Inquiry | BE

Scotland has not been immune from it's own scandals, as this latest chapter in our fascinating Dark Corners series demonstrates.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No. 11: Tayside and the Kilshaw Inquiry

30

Jul

The use of video telephony at home and in care homes can provide increased efficiency for practitioners and better quality for people | Adam Hoare

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The use of video telephony at home and in care homes can provide increased efficiency for practitioners and better quality for people

29

Jul

Dr Up-to-date or Dr Deadwood? How can you tell? | Prof John Spiers

Everyone is looking for new and radical approaches to take the NHS forward.. In this exclusive, must-read contribution, John Spiers offers a wide ranging analysis and his own radical solutions.

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Dr Up-to-date or Dr Deadwood? How can you tell?

28

Jul

SHINE | Henrietta Hughes, NHS England

It's the first anniversary of the 2012 Olympic Games – what is the legacy for the NHS?

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SHINE

28

Jul

Cutting the £30bn NHS funding gap | Cormac Tobin

Cormac Tobin, CEO of Lloydspharmacy and Celesio suggests radical redesign is the key to unlocking the savings

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Cutting the £30bn NHS funding gap

26

Jul

Hidden Complexity in A&E Trends in England/Increase in deaths in 2012 | Dr Rod Jones

Rod Jones appears to have uncovered some extraordinary trends in emergency medical admissions and deaths

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Hidden Complexity in A&E Trends in England/Increase in deaths in 2012

24

Jul

The relationship between information and the leadership and management of the NHS | Andy Harris

Lengthy but hugely insightful article into the forces at play in information provision for NHS leadership. This fascinating perspective is well worth a read. Cuppa builders and a hobnob time.

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The relationship between information and the leadership and management of the NHS

23

Jul

UK Blood Products Ltd sold to US Private Equity firm | Paul Warburton

Government assurances that the NHS would not be privatised did not extend, it seems, to the privatisation of NHS public assets. Writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, Paul Warburton explains.

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UK Blood Products Ltd sold to US Private Equity firm

21

Jul

Involving Members in staff recruitment | Emma Dickens

Many Foundation Trusts struggle to find ways of making the most of their Membership base. Putting aside the old approaches to 'engagement', Leeds Community Trust have found a way of involving Members that is real, meaningful and rewarding for everyone.

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Involving Members in staff recruitment

19

Jul

One More Ambition – A Keogh Through the Community | Lynn Young

Lynn Young applauds the Keogh report and asks for the same approach to be taken with community care.

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One More Ambition – A Keogh Through the Community

16

Jul

Boardroom Briefing – The Politics of Health | Professor Brian Edwards

What should do Boards do whilst politicians argue and dither about what to do next with the NHS?

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Boardroom Briefing – The Politics of Health

16

Jul

Delivering Public Value Through Procurement | Alan Turrell, Head of Contracting & Procurement, NHS Walsall

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Delivering Public Value Through Procurement

15

Jul

Save £1bn on Pharmacy with bold commissioning! | Peter Magirr, Head of Medicines Management, NHS Sheffield CCG

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Save £1bn on Pharmacy with bold commissioning!

12

Jul

The Spanish are not only good at football | Dr Ian Trimble

Radical change is needed if the NHS is to survive, according to everyone from the Health Secretary down. But change to what? Writing exclusively for this site, Dr Ian Trimble gives us a fascinating insight into aspects of the Spanish healthcare system that might have powerful lessons for the future of the NHS

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The Spanish are not only good at football

09

Jul

Nurses DO Care | Claire Docherty

A first year student nurse tells of her shock and dismay at the stories of the NHS in the media. Claire Docherty sends a powerful message to all of us about what it means to be a nurse in the NHS

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Nurses DO Care

07

Jul

Letter from Europe | Our Special Correspondent

Not everything about Europe is bad. Our Special Correspondent keeps us up to date on some of the most interesting developments affecting the health service.

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Letter from Europe

03

Jul

Dark Corners of the NHS No.10: PIP Implants Scandal | BE

A very recent scandal exposed the burgeoning cosmetic surgery industry as relatively unregulated and in need a bit of repair of its own. Another fascinating peep behind the headlines by our special correspondent.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No.10: PIP Implants Scandal

02

Jul

An International Workforce | Lynn Young

Lynn Young celebrates the caring contribution of those born outside the UK and suggests we can afford to be generous in return. Controversial? Quite possibly, for some people, it is.

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An International Workforce

01

Jul

Dark Corners of the NHS No. 9: Cancer Screening | BE

In another fascinating tale, our Special Correspondent looks back 16 years to an unhappy episode in the history of cancer screening

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Dark Corners of the NHS No. 9: Cancer Screening

29

Jun

In The Board Room: This time the financial crisis is really serious | Professor Brian Edwards

In the latest of our series on key Board Room challenges, Brian Edwards makes the case for Boards to get their radical act together fast, in response to the Chancellor's financial review. This is a must read for every Board member, whether CCG or Trust.

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In The Board Room: This time the financial crisis is really serious

29

Jun

Clinical Performance Data: Some Thoughts | Professor John Spiers

Writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, John Spiers, in a no-holds-barred exposition, laments the power of vested interests such as the medical profession to undermine legitimate democratic processes.

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Clinical Performance Data: Some Thoughts

25

Jun

CCGs defensible decision making under threat | Andrew Craig

Are CSUs already beginning to undermine the ability of CCGs to engage in 'defensible decision making'? Writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, Andrew Craig examines the trends and challenges us to act before it is too late

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CCGs defensible decision making under threat

25

Jun

Operation Onion: Leadership and peeling away the layers | Samantha Jones

It's easy for staff to slip into accepting things as they are, rather than focusing on how much better things could be. Operation Onion peels back more layers and shows the value and necessity of sustained effort

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Operation Onion: Leadership and peeling away the layers

23

Jun

Dark Corners of the NHS No. 8: A Regulator’s Dilemma | BE

In a highly topical look back at the genesis of the original Mid Staffs Report, our Special Correspondent reveals a back room dilemma that, had it been resolved differently, could have changed the course of recent NHS history.

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Dark Corners of the NHS No. 8: A Regulator’s Dilemma

21

Jun

Public Interest Disclosures and the Law | Our man with the inside knowledge

Too many people hide behind the Data Protection Act including, it seems, the CQC. The Information Commissioner is not impressed. Our man with the inside knowledge explains why.

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Public Interest Disclosures and the Law

26

May

Letter from America | Professor Brian Edwards

Health news from across the 'pond'

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Letter from America

16

Jun

My Mum and the simple questions | Paula Higson

'Is my hospital safe?'. This is the question on many patients' lips. Taking publicly available data and writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, Paula Higson has created a simple but very telling dashboard to prompt Trust Boards to ask the key questions. Tell us what you think.

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My Mum and the simple questions

16

Jun

If music be the food of love, then play on | Lynn Young

Learning about dementia first hand from her mother, Lynn Young shares her very personal experiences with us and shows us the value of music

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If music be the food of love, then play on

11

Jun

Dark Corners of th NHS No. 7: Industrial Action | BE

Way back in the early 1970's, the NHS had not seen any serious industrial action. When it did happen, it was pretty dramatic. Our special correspondent sheds some light.

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Dark Corners of th NHS No. 7: Industrial Action

10

Jun

Let’s Change Assumptions on Pharmacies Too | Mark Griffiths

Pharmacies are for coughs and colds, plasters, bandages and hair gel, right? With CCGs under pressure to make health care delivery more cost effective, Mark Griffiths challenges us to think otherwise

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Let’s Change Assumptions on Pharmacies Too

09

Jun

HURRAH FOR 24 HOURS IN A&E | Lynn Young

The Channel 4 series about King's College Hospital A&E has been a huge success. Everyone we know is hooked. In this exclusive review for nhsManagers.network, Lynn Young shares some of her thoughts about why it as been so good to watch.

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HURRAH FOR 24 HOURS IN A&E

09

Jun

NHS CHARM Offensive | Marie Hoyle

'It costs nothing to be polite' my old Mum used to say. So what would happen if we took that a step further and had a proper CHARM offensive? With her original and clear approach, Marie Hoyle shows us how a few simple changes could make a big difference for others and for ourselves

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NHS CHARM Offensive

09

Jun

The Hot One | Sarah Hollington

With a very personal take on commissioning, Sarah Hollington shares some secrets, tries to get beyond the rhetoric on urgent care and asks the not-so-stupid 'dumb' question.

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The Hot One

05

Jun

Nicholson: The Departure of a Chief Executive | Professor Brian Edwards

Last week, Sir David Nicholson announced he will retire next year. Writing exclusively for nhsmanagers.network, In this typically well informed and insightful editorial, Brian Edwards offers his thoughts on how history might view the departing NHS Chief Executive.

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Nicholson: The Departure of a Chief Executive

05

Jun

The Thrill of the Open Road | David Dalton

Everyone agrees the NHS has to change. But do provider CEOs have the ambition, courage and leadership to make the radical changes needed to solve tomorrow's problems rather than yesterday's, asks David Dalton in a no-punches-pulled editorial for nhsmanagers.network

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The Thrill of the Open Road

04

Jun

Dark Corners of the NHS No 6: Dr Harold Shipman | BE

The infamous case of Dr Harold Shipman is revisited by our Special Correspondent, lest we forget. It led to changes at the GMC - didn't it?

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Dark Corners of the NHS No 6: Dr Harold Shipman

03

Jun

Public Opinion is a Many Splendored Thing | Lynn Young

The public need to be reassured that the NHS is as safe at weekends as during the week. Surely we can work out how to do that, asks Lynn Young

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Public Opinion is a Many Splendored Thing

30

May

Into The Community We Must Go | Lynn Young

So, more care in the community says Jeremy Hunt. Here we go again. But is there any better chance of success this time round? Lynn Young asks some pertinent questions

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Into The Community We Must Go

07

May

The New Procurement Regulations | Prof Chris Newdick

Do CCGs have to tender for everything or do they not? Writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, Prof Chris Newdick illuminates and clarifies a very confused position

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The New Procurement Regulations

23

May

We can’t go on meeting like this ……. | Valerie Isles

Valerie Isles gives us a fascinating and informative review of the Nuffield Trust conference (jointly with the IFS) entitled ‘Competition for Care : understanding the NHS market and role of independent providers’. A must read.

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We can’t go on meeting like this …….

22

May

Get Thee to a Care Home | Lynn Young

Personal experience often changes your perceptions, sometime quite starkly. Here, writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, former RCN Adviser Lynn Young describes just such an experience

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Get Thee to a Care Home

20

May

Dark Corners of the NHS No. 4: Problems at Ashworth Special Hospital | BE

Our Special Correspondent shines a light on another dark chapter in the history of the NHS. Not for the first time, nor the last, positive changes arise from the darkest of events

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Dark Corners of the NHS No. 4: Problems at Ashworth Special Hospital

19

May

This Thing Called Nursing | Lynn Young

Get nursing right and you get patient care right. In an exclusive contribution to the debate on minimum staffing levels for nursing, Lynn Young looks at how her own attitudes have changed and what the future might look like.

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This Thing Called Nursing

19

May

Good and Better, Not Right and Wrong | Dr Martin Farrier

Mortality data offers comparison of health care provision. It’s a cornerstone of the Mid Staffs inquiry, but should it ever be a load-bearing keystone? Martin Farrier challenges some of our assumptions.

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Good and Better, Not Right and Wrong

16

May

Avoidable Deaths | Richard Bourne

HSMR or SHMI or RAMI may or may not show something meaningful but what it shows is still unclear, says Richard Bourne. He thinks there may not be as many avoidable deaths as we are often led to believe.

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Avoidable Deaths

14

May

Not many complaints are investigated | Prof Brian Jarman

The number of written complaints about hospital services is increasing but the proportion of formally investigated by the Ombudsman remains very low. Writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, Professor Brian Jarman highlights the need to consider the implications for Boards and our ability to spot emerging quality issues.

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Not many complaints are investigated

08

May

Brave Commissioning | Graham Atkinson

Writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network Graham Atkinson, in the first of a new series on commissioning, asks if there are enough brave commissioners out there to really make the difference.

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Brave Commissioning

06

May

Out in the Open | Dr Paul Lambden

In this thought provoking article, the author of our Medicine for Managers series examines the role of the GP appointment system and whether there are better alternatives for managing demand.

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Out in the Open

26

Apr

In the Boardroom – Whistle Blower: Hero or Whinger? | Professor Brian Edwards

In the latest edition of our series on challenges for the Boardroom, Professor Brian Edwards looks at the dilemmas posed for the Board when the whistle blower calls time on patient safety.

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In the Boardroom – Whistle Blower: Hero or Whinger?

13

Apr

Dementia: The Magic Serum | Dr Charles Alessi

Writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, Dr Charles Alessi opens our eyes to the magic serum for dementia. Remember, you read it here first ...

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Dementia: The Magic Serum

15

Apr

Talk Time | Samantha Jones

When you strip away the management theories, the business speak, what are you left with? People talking to each other; and that's all there is. Sam Jones and her team talk - and listen - to staff. What better way to provide leadership?

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Talk Time

07

Apr

Francis 2: the RCN responds to the Government’s proposals | Dr Peter Carter

Writing exclusively for nhsManagers.network, the RCN Chief Executive questions whether the Government's response to the Francis Report has any relevance or value when it comes to recruiting and retaining well motivated nursing staff.

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Francis 2: the RCN responds to the Government’s proposals

29

Mar

It’s a Sad State of Affairs | Dr Clare Gerada

Writing exclusively for nhsmanagers.network, Dr Clare Gerada, Chair of the Council of the RCGP, laments the need for a Duty of Candour

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It’s a Sad State of Affairs

29

Mar

Operation Onion | Samantha Jones

Sometimes a simple approach can be transformational. The Chief Executive of West Herts Hospital Trust sets out on a mission to peel away the layers and empower people to act, in the interests of patients and staff

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Operation Onion

25

Mar

Slaying the myths: a layman’s guide to mortality rates | Prof B Jarman/Prof B Edwards

In this fascinating and revealing interview, Professor Brian Edwards asks some very important questions and gets defininitive answers from international expert Professor Brian Jarman

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Slaying the myths: a layman’s guide to mortality rates

22

Mar

The New NHS Landscape – We’re all in it together | Alison Stephens

In this thoughtful article Alison Stephens of The Health Consultancy looks at complexity and chaos; their relevance to the current NHS reforms and the need for us all to 'walk the walk' as well as 'talk the talk'.

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The New NHS Landscape – We’re all in it together

22

Mar

Not Breaking Enough Boundaries | Andrew Craig

Is the NHS Alliance's new 'manifesto' as radical as it needs to be? Nowhere near radical enough, thinks Andrew Craig, as he shows us what a true primary care led NHS might look like.

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Not Breaking Enough Boundaries

11

Mar

In the Boardroom – the NHS Constitution & Criminal Liability | Professor Brian Edwards

Professor Brian Edwards lifts the lid on the legal implications of the NHS Constitution for you if you sit in a board room.

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In the Boardroom – the NHS Constitution & Criminal Liability
NHS Managers