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Presentation by Dr Simon Duffy (@simonjduffy) of the Centre for Welfare Reform (@CforWR) for discussion by the Socialist Health Association on 18th June 2016, Birmingham Old SHA Policy • Free social care should be introduced progressively starting with those with greatest needs, such as those with disabilities. • The SHA will campaign against cuts in Social Care. • Additional funding for social care is necessary to raise the quality and professionalize the workforce, with decent pay and conditions. • Public provision of (social) care services should be greatly increased. • Integration will bring longer term savings, but the initial net additional cost has to be met through progressive […]
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I have now begun my fifth week working in Finland. Although there are many differences between England and Finland there is certainly one shared problem – competitive tendering. This problem began in Finland in 2007, after Finland introduced a law on tendering which applied EU procurement principles to health and social care. This means that Finnish municipalities must tender and re-tender services regardless of the views of the people who use those services. So people and families find that their support provider is being replaced, without their agreement. This policy is supposed to encourage markets, choice, competition and innovation. But […]
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Personal budgets are in the headlines after Pulse published research based on FOI requests to CCGs.  The headline on BBC’s Today programme was “Treats instead of Treatments” and the line promoted by Pulse was that Personal Health Budgets (PHBs) lead to inappropriate ‘non-evidenced based’ spending by the NHS. The examples provided included a summer house, a Wii Fit consul, an iRobot, holidays, horse-riding, music lessons and a sat nav device; or as Pulse put it in their scare headline: “NHS allows patients to splash cash on holidays, summer houses and Wii Fits.” Interestingly this shock headline generated the most intense […]
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What is the best we can hope for from the new Government – whoever is in charge? I have three hopes. First, greater commitment to the real purpose of the NHS – equity. Second, less structural reform, and more real innovation. Third, the emergence of alternative voices and perspectives – from communities, from the groups facing disadvantage and from the professions themselves. Overall I would like the NHS to see itself as a community – not as an organisation – a community that takes social justice seriously. In A Better Plan for the NHS, Health and Care Ed Miliband and […]
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