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Author Archives: Brian Fisher

This is a discussion document not agreed policy. The rationale for international trade is clear. No country can be self-sufficient in everything it requires, whether this is because of the geographical distribution of natural resources, climatic constraints on agriculture, or the benefits that come with concentration of particular types of expertise. However, it is important that this trade takes place in ways that bring benefits for all concerned. Unfortunately, this is not the case with many existing global and regional trade agreements. Too often, they are designed in ways that allow the powerful to exploit the powerless, whether by exploiting […]
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This is a discussion document not agreed policy. A new unified care system that combines health and defined social care components and specialised housing, having local democratic input from the Local Authorities with the Public Health Director having that role in an expanded Public Health organization with the NHCS and in the LA, to ensure the tightest of possible joint working. Social care will be offered on the basis of assessed need, free at the point of use, and funded from progressive taxation. Devolved administrations will have the freedom to develop their policies and approaches independently within this context. Universities […]
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This is a discussion document not agreed policy. A Health and Care Service The bringing together of our separate health and social care systems so that they become one unified care system driven by the political values and professional / organisational principles that underpin the NHS. Organising resources to meet the medical and social needs of people so that organisational and professional barriers that might hinder the giving of care are kept to a minimum (or even removed totally). It sees the need for care as sitting within the wider social context which individuals and families inhabit. Marketisation/privatisation We support […]
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This is a discussion document not agreed policy. 1. Purpose 1.1.This paper supports the bringing together of our separate health and social care systems to become one unified care system driven by the political values and professional / organisational principles that underpin the NHS. 1.2. The political values are: a system with national standards; funded largely from progressive taxation1; delivered by locally accountable bodies that rely on committed staff many of whom have professional training and professionally established responsibilities; is evidence based; relies on the notion of “co-production” between service users and professional staff – people playing an active role […]
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This is a discussion document not agreed policy. The SHA is concerned that general practice under the Tories may go the way of dentistry and optometry. The SHA aims to eliminate the private sector except in exceptional and transient circumstances. The SHA wants to see improved access to primary care for both acute and chronic care. We are keen to maintain continuing personal care. This will require significant increased funding for clinicians in primary care. The government’s proposals are too little, too late. They have resulted in immense frustration with GPs threatening industrial action for the first time. The SHA […]
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This is a discussion document not agreed policy. Mental Health services are “overwhelmed” by soaring demand according to a report by the body representing community, ambulance and hospital service providers, NHS Providers (July 2017, ref 1). Demand has increased by 5-10% over the last 3-4 years, but by 30-40% for children and young people. Patients are facing long delays to access mental health care, and people too often receive inadequate treatment. The numbers of people in need of specialist post-trauma mental health services has escalated dramatically following recent terrorist and civilian disasters. These intractable problems are the result of the […]
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The election showed that people across the country welcomed a left-leaning set of policies. The financial crisis and the right-wing’s austerity response to it has left the country poorer and more unequal both financially and socially. By offering a comprehensive manifesto that showed a practical route towards more investment in the country, its institutions and its people, Corbyn and McDonnell have broken the assumptions of Labour Party policy-making since 1997. Political conversation in the UK has moved so far to the right in the last 20 years that social democratic polices commonplace across Europe are seen by the media as […]
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Fulfilment of repeated high level commitments to ‘parity of esteem’ for mental health, and urgent implementation of proposals set out in the cross-agency ‘Five Year Forward View for Mental Health‘ (Feb 2017), including: parity of funding for prevention of, treatment services and related social care for, and research into mental ill-health treatments including psychological alternatives to medication; and funding to get research findings into clinical practice more quickly; a new integrated National Service Framework for Mental Health, urgent review and reinstatement of national standards for mental health service provision, including for access to services; greatly enhanced services for children and young people with mental […]
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The Next Step To Privatisation? They Aren’t Accountable, They Don’t Seem To Offer Better Care And They Are Not Really Organisations. The biggest ever NHS tender for £6bn over 10 years was launched recently for a Local Care Organisation – a single provider for all “out of hospital” health and care services for 600,000 people in Manchester. The contract will be let by a partnership between the council and a new single Clinical Commissioning Group. This is the latest variant of an ACO – we shall be seeing more of them over the next few years. What are Accountable Care […]
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Addressing the social determinants of health is an important foundation for the health and wellbeing of our citizens. The fundamentals of life such as access to clean water and safe waste disposal; housing which provides enough space, clean air and efficient heating; education to achieve universal literacy and numeracy; jobs that protect health and ensure adequate income; and an environment which promotes healthy transport, green spaces and public amenities should all be assessed and developed as a holistic approach to public health. Local and national democratically accountable governments need to hold these strategic responsibilities and be supported by public health […]
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The NHS march on 4 March is an opportunity for us all to show our opposition to government policy on the NHS and social care. I don’t need to dwell in detail on the devastating impact on the NHS of the government’s continuing austerity. Hospital beds running dangerously hot – as more bed cuts are planned. Hospital discharges delayed and many that do take place resulting in chaotic, unco-ordinated support. Social care slashed to the extent that elderly, vulnerable people are no longer receiving vital support – and reports that the chancellor will refuse to offer relief. A recent paper by McKee […]
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PATIENT: “I’ve been in hospital for weeks… All the hospital staff have been great and very caring. I need to be back in my own home. I’ve been blind since birth and I usually have care workers who visit me at home.” COUNCIL: “Unfortunately, the agencies we commission to provide care across the borough tell us that they simply do not have the capacity to provide the service….” (R. MacDonald Oldham Chronicle 5/10) SOCIAL WORKER: “Our Director of Social services has told us last week that we have no financial ….  LD services are always seen as the ones eating […]
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