16:25 A medical student also Tweeted earlier today her FOI response from NHS England to her request which asked: ‘on a typical Sunday or Bank Holiday, how many junior doctors would be expected to work?’
But NHS England claimed they didn’t know either…
— Noreen N (@Norzie_N) March 8, 2016
16:15 And as tomorrow’s 48-hour junior doctor strike looms, the deputy leader of a local Conservative association has defected to the Labour Party over the junior doctor contract imposition.
Upon switching political parties, Adam Nowacki, a deputy chairman of East Ham Conservatives, said health secretary Jeremy Hunt was ‘attacking some of the most hard-working people in the country’.
Mr Nowacki, whose wife is a junior doctor, was born to Polish parents who he said had fought dictatorship in their youth.
He told local paper Newham Recorder: ‘This is about principles for me. My wife is a junior doctor and so are many of my friends. They are being hurt by the government, so I can’t support the party anymore…
‘Poland used to be a communist country. It took lots of courage to fight and become a free country. What Mr Hunt has done is a move like a dictatorship, it’s like what my parents had to fight in the ‘50s and ‘60s.’
14:55 Ahead of the 48-hour junior doctor strike which kicks off at 8am tomorrow, the Department of Health has published a statement saying that ‘19,000 patient operations have been cancelled’ as a result of the BMA’s industrial action in February.
A spokesperson for DH said: ’Patients have so far seen more than 19,000 operations cancelled as a result of the BMA’s irresponsible and unjustified industrial action.
‘The new contract, 90% of which was agreed with the BMA, and endorsed by senior NHS leaders, is a very good deal for doctors and the NHS. It will mean an average 13.5% basic pay rise with a cap on the number of long shifts worked to improve safety. We urge junior doctors to look at the detail of the contract and the clear benefits it brings.’
12:05 Some mental health trusts have seen ‘no significant investment’ in psychiatric services for children despite government plans to radically overhaul provision, according to leading experts in the field.
Last year, the government pledged to invest £143m in improving children’s mental health services in England for the current financial year – which forms as part of a £1.25bn package of additional funding for the care of children suffering from mental health problems such as self-harm, depression and suicidal thoughts.
But Stephen Dalton, chief executive of the mental health network which represents NHS providers, has claimed there has still been cuts and little investment at a local level around some children’s mental health services, the BBC reports.
He added: ’Providers of mental health services and most importantly children and families are struggling to see the difference.
‘It doesn’t seem to have turned into posts on the front line. We are not hearing any reports of any significant investment at a local level around children’s services. Indeed, some services are still experiencing cuts in services.’
NHS England, however, has said it has given £75m from the £143m pot to CCGs – but some providers fear that this money could have been given to other services.
10:30 This morning we are leading on our exclusive story which reveals only one GP was able to immediately begin practising upon returning to England in the first six months of the simplified induction and refresher scheme.
Health Education England initially said that the scheme would speed up the process in which GPs with experience of working in the UK were placed back on the performers’ list upon returning to England from working abroad as a GP, cutting out bureaucracy.
HEE told Pulse it had been aware over the concerns of the programme and would be looking to see ‘if changes were needed’.
9:30 The Mail Online is reporting this morning that as few as 5% of errors relating to patient safety are ever reported – according to new research headed up by former health minister Lord Ara Darzi.
In the new research, health experts from Imperial College London claimed that the NHS system for reporting errors was not sensitive enough and required an overhaul.
They added that patients are at increasing risk of harm, with older people suffering more complex illnesses potentially leading to more errors, budget cuts putting staff under pressure and the increasing threat of simple infections becoming resistant to antibiotics.
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