Headlines

Australia - New school-based program to support children’s mental health This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Australia's government is launching a $98.6 million school-based mental health program to give teachers the tools to help students manage their mental health. The program will be rolled out in 6,000 schools and 2,000 early learning services in 2019. Teachers will have access to extensive online materials on mental health and suicide prevention.

Canada - Ontario’s health care system under increased strain This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Many parts of Ontario’s health care system are under increased strain, according to Measuring Up 2018, Health Quality Ontario’s 12th yearly report on the performance of the province’s health system. The report’s key findings emphasize the backlog in different parts of the health system, underscoring the hospital overcrowding issue.

UK - Health Secretary launches 'Prevention is better than cure' vision This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The Department of Health and Social Care has published its vision for future approaches to prevention. Plans include halving childhood obesity; increasing mental health services for pregnant women; offering whole-genome sequencing to cancer patients; and diagnosing 75% of cancers at stages 1 and 2. Predictive prevention approaches will use digital technology to offer targeted health advice.

International - Declaration of Astana charts course to achieve universal health coverage, 40 years since declaration on primary health care in Alma-Ata This hyperlink will open in a new window.
On October 26, 2018, at a WHO conference in Astana, Kazakhstan, 150 countries agreed to a new global commitment to primary health care for all. The Declaration of Astana reaffirms a historic 1978 declaration in which world leaders first committed to primary healthcare at a WHO conference in the Kazakh city of Alma-Ata.

International - Stopping antimicrobial resistance would cost just USD 2 per person a year This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Superbug infections could cost the lives of millions unless more is done to stem antibiotic resistance. According to this OECD report, three out of four such deaths could be avoided by spending $2 US per person a year on measures such as hand-washing and delaying prescription of antibiotics. Resistance is increasing most rapidly in low-income countries.

Upcoming Events

Italy - XXXVIth International Congress on Law and Mental Health
This conference takes place July 22 to 26, 2019, in Rome. A pre-conference session on 'Medical Complicity'' takes place on July 21. Presentations will explore access to justice, facets of addiction, mass violence, crisis intervention, and much more. The call for abstract submissions is now open.

Ireland - 2nd European Conference of Health Education and Research 2019
The International Network for Health Workforce Education is holding this conference in Dublin on January 9 and 10, 2019. The conference promotes interdisciplinary co-operation and critical understanding of the latest research in the field of health workforce education, training and development. The event will bring together researchers, educators, trainers and policy makers from around the world.

Reports and Issue Portfolios

Australia - Barriers and enablers of patient and family centred care in an Australian acute care hospital: Perspectives of health managers This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Undertaken in an acute care public hospital in Sydney, Australia, this study explores barriers and enablers affecting patient and family-centred care. The authors interviewed 15 health managers in medicine, nursing, allied health and non-clinical services. Participants agreed that key enablers included leadership focus, supportive formal structures, and positive staff relations. Key barriers were staffing, resource and environmental constraints, along with unsupportive staff attitudes.

Canada - The Establishment of Ontario's Local Health Integration Networks: A Conflation of Regionalization with Integration of Health Services This hyperlink will open in a new window.
In 2006, the province of Ontario introduced health services regionalization with the establishment of Local Health Integration Networks (LHINs). While LHINs were designed to integrate services, this article argues that an implicit objective may have been to shift accountability away from the provincial government by increasing bureaucracy and limiting stakeholder input. To date, there has been no robust evaluation of the LHINs' impact on service integration.

Canada - Comparing Performance of Universal Health Care Countries, 2018 This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This Fraser Institute study compares the cost and performance of 28 universal healthcare systems in OECD countries. It suggests that Canada has one of the OECD's most expensive systems, with an overall performance that is only modest to poor in terms of access, availability of resources and quality of clinical performance.

Canada - Assessment of scalability of evidence-based innovations in community-based primary health care: a cross-sectional study This hyperlink will open in a new window.
In 2013, the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (CIHR) funded 12 community-based primary healthcare teams to develop evidence-based innovations focused on access to care and chronic disease management. This study explores the scalability of the resulting innovations, which varied from health interventions to methodological improvements. It concludes that scalability varied widely among the innovations.

Denmark - Implementing Integrated Care - Lessons from the Odense Integrated Care Trial This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Creating coordination between healthcare sectors is a challenge, and decision makers often replicate models across countries and settings. An example of this is the translation of a London, UK integrated care pilot into a large-scale trial that took place in the Danish city of Odense from 2013-2016, where it produced poor results. This article highlights findings from an evaluation of the project and discusses lessons learned.

Europe - EXPH (EXpert Panel on effective ways of investing in Health), Opinion on Assessing the impact of digital transformation of health services This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Offering the views of a European Union (EU)-commissioned expert panel, this document analyzes the impact of the digital transformation of health service. It establishes evaluation parameters, categories and methodologies, while analyzing government decision-making and implementation. The document discusses data sources and broader considerations (cybersecurity, privacy, and market power), and provides detailed recommendations.

UK - Improving access and continuity in general practice: practical and policy lessons This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This report for the National Health Service (NHS) investigates the impact of improved access on continuity of care in general practice and makes a number of policy and organizational recommendations. The authors show that a wide range of improved outcomes are associated with continuity of care, and use survey results to demonstrate its added value for general practitioners.

Sweden - Effects of a multifaceted intervention QI program to improve ICU performance This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Inadequate intensive care unit (ICU) clinical performance and outcome data were the impetus for this Swedish quality improvement (QI) project. It addressed work processes and issues of competence utilization by forming multi-disciplinary teams (physicians, nurses and physiotherapists) with training in scientific production management and value streaming approaches. A seven-year follow up period revealed reduced ICU length of stay and mortality, as well as improved cost-effectiveness.

UK - Understanding the Performance and Potential of Specialist Hospitals This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The National Health Service (NHS) is considering expanding its network of specialist hospitals, a policy shift applauded in this research, which finds that specialist hospitals are innovation leaders that improve quality standards, attract highly-qualified staff and deliver better outcomes. The authors make recommendations concerning the acceleration of innovation adoption and spread, along with lessons learned for non-specialist hospitals and the NHS overall.