Department of Health

£5.45 billion budget for local public health services announced

A £5.45 billion two-year ring-fenced public health budget for local authorities has been announced by the Department of Health.

From April 2013, public health budgets will be protected for the first time, with local authorities taking the lead for improving the health of their local communities. This aims to drive local efforts to improve health and wellbeing by tackling the wider determinants of poor health.

It is claimed that funding is specifically targeted, for the first time, at those areas with the worst health outcomes.

£907m adult social care funding gap in London by 2018 predicted

The funding gap for providing adult social care in London will amount to £907m within five years, according to a new analysis by London Councils, supported by Ernst and Young.

A Case for Sustainable Funding for Adult Social Care sets out the severe financial challenges faced by London boroughs in their provision of adult social care. It highlights how councils are already taking action to narrow the funding gap by working more closely with the NHS, improving procurement and developing new ways to provide social care for older and disabled people.

Health Secretary announces funding for care homes and wards specially designed for people with dementia

Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt has announced dedicated funding to create care environments for people with dementia that help reduce anxiety and distress, and help people feel safe.

Up to £50mwill be available to NHS trusts and local authorities, working in partnership with care providers, to help tailor hospitals and care homes to the needs of people with dementia. The care providers involved will need to sign up to the Dementia Care and Support Compact, which commits them to providing first rate care and support for people with dementia and their families.

Department of Health latest Health & Social Care consultations

The Department of Health is currently consulting on a huge number of issues relating to the re-structuring of the NHS as a result of the Health & Social Care Act 2012; including joint strategic needs assessments and joint health and wellbeing strategies and also on the Social Care White Paper 'Caring for our future: Reforming Care and Support White Paper and Draft Bill'.

Government announces care and support reforms

The government has announced the biggest reform of the care and support system since 1948. While no new process of funding social care has been identified (especially the care of older people), the  White Papersets out a number of important changes to social care provision.

w: www.dh.gov.uk/health/2012/07/careandsupportbill/

‘Friends and family’ test aims to improve patient care and identify best performing hospitals

An NHS ‘friends and family’ test to improve patient care and identify the best performing hospitals in England has been announced by Prime Minister David Cameron.

From April 2013, patients will be asked a simple question: whether they would recommend hospital wards, accident and emergency units to a friend or relative based on their treatment.

Public health workforce consultation – deadline 29 June

A consultation has been launched to help identify and unlock the potential of the people who are responsible for improving the population’s health and wellbeing.

The public health workforce consultation is aimed at a wide audience, and the findings will be used to inform a new strategy for this group of staff.

The Local Government Association is encouraging councils to take part in the consultation.

The consultation was signposted in the public health document Healthy Lives, Healthy People: update and way forward.

Department of Health: Long-term conditions strategy consultation – deadline 15 June

This consultation is seeking views on the development of a cross-government long term conditions strategy which will set out a vision for how services such as health, social care, education, housing and others can work together to improve life chances and outcomes for people living with long term conditions.

To take part in the consultation go to: http://longtermconditions.dh.gov.uk/have-your-say/

Angela Rippon to kick start Prime Minister’s dementia challenge champion groups

A new group has been established to look at ways of challenging businesses and the public sector to improve the environment for people with dementia. Alzheimer’s Society Ambassador Angela Rippon and Alzheimer’s Society Chief Executive, Jeremy Hughes, will lead discussions on how to create communities that support people living with the condition.

NHS Bill is passed

Having passed its final parliamentary hurdle, the Health and Social Care bill is expected to become law within the next two weeks. The bill, which passes responsibility for commissioning of health services to groups of GPs and introduces elements of competition to healthcare competition has been hotly contested with many trades unions, professional bodies, patient groups and others opposing its introduction.

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