New draft recommendations for the care of acute medical emergencies

This draft guideline includes recommendations for the organisation and delivery of emergency and acute medical care | NHS Networks

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Image source: USW-UniLife – Flickr // CC BY-NC-SA 2.0

It includes recommendations for practice and for research. Recommendations are included on:

  • first points of contact with emergency and acute care services
  • alternatives to hospital care
  • opening hours and locations of acute care services
  • services within hospitals
  • ward rounds, transfers and discharges
  • monitoring and managing hospital bed capacity.

Who is it for?

  • Commissioners and providers of health and social care.
  • Health and social care practitioners.
  • People with or at risk of a medical emergency or acute illness, and their families and carers.

Read the full draft here

Patient and service-provider perspectives for treating primary care complaints in urgent care settings

An investigation into why patients chose to attend two, nurse-led, minor injury units (MIUs) to access primary healthcare services rather than attend their GP practice | International Emergency Nursing

Highlights:

  • Patients with non-urgent conditions are increasingly attending urgent care providers in the UK.
  • Consumerist notions of choice and expediency influence healthcare decision making.
  • Patients seem to be acting rationally in response to healthcare policy promises.
  • Providing treatment establishes precedent and expectation for future care.
  • Co-located primary care, working alongside ENP services, offer benefits for local communities.

Full reference: Sturgeon, D. (2017) Convenience, quality and choice: Patient and service-provider perspectives for treating primary care complaints in urgent care settings. International Emergency Nursing. Published online: 26 June 2017

A & E performance: The view of NHS Providers

Following recent media coverage of NHS accident and emergency department performance, NHS Providers has published NHS Providers view on NHS A&E performance and linked media coverage

This briefing sets out facts about current A&E performance without underplaying the real pressures facing providers.

The briefing hihghlights the following:

  • Very few trusts are performing well, as measured by meeting the seeing 95% of A&E patients within the four-hour standard. We expect overall NHS performance for last week against the standard to be between 70 and 80%.
  • The vast majority of trusts are coping with the demand, in terms of avoiding persistently long trolley and 12-hour waits but some are struggling to do so.
  • There is a small number of trusts who are failing to cope with the demand and who have seen persistently large trolley and 12-hour waits. These tend to have lasted for short periods as corrective management action kicks in. Clearly, any incident of unavoidable harm is unacceptable and trusts are doing all they can to avoid them.

Read the full briefing here

Areas of NHS will implode this winter, expert warns

Parts of the NHS “will implode” this winter, an expert has warned, as new figures show falling A&E performance over the past few months. | The Guardian

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Dr Mark Holland, the president of the Society for Acute Medicine, said the days when summer used to provide a respite for busy emergency departments had gone, and instead the NHS faced an “eternal winter”.

The NHS was “on its knees” and a major increase in hospital admissions due to flu or the sickness bug norovirus could lead to collapse, he added.

Holland spoke out as new figures show that waiting times in A&E units in England this summer have been worse than for most winters stretching back more than a decade.

One in 10 patients waited more than four hours in A&E during June, July and August – worse than any winter in the past 12 years bar one, analysis by the BBC showed. Only last winter marked a worse performance since the target was launched in 2004.

Related: The King’s Fund responds to latest NHS performance statistics

Improving urgent care for older people

An independent commission has called for a fundamental change to the way care for older people is designed and delivered, so that care is tailored around individuals rather than institutions.

In a new report, the Commission on Improving Urgent Care for Older People outlines eight key principles the health and care sector can adopt to improve urgent care for older people.

These are:

  1. Start with care driven by the person’s needs and goals.
  2. Have a greater focus on proactive care.
  3. Allow local leaders the space to build relationships and sustainable solutions to the challenges they face.
  4. Care coordination that offers older people a single point of contact to guide older people through an often complex system.
  5. Make greater use of multi-disciplinary teams.
  6. Ensure workforce, training and care skills reflect the care needs of older people today.
  7. Enable leadership to support staff to innovate and make a difference.
  8. The way that NHS outcomes and performance is measured needs to allow local leaders to focus on individual needs, delivered by the whole health and care system.

The report includes case studies and examples of best practice from schemes across the country designed to improve care for older people.

Full report: Growing old together: Sharing new ways to support older people