Headlines

Australia - Blueprint for Professional Aged Care Workforce Growth This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Australia’s professional aged care workforce is estimated to require one million workers by 2050. This report by the Aged Care Workforce Taskforce sets out a strategy to help the sector shift attitudes to caregiving careers and enhance quality of life for senior citizens.

Canada - More Canadians could benefit from palliative care This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Most Canadians (75%) want to die at home, and a new report by the Canadian Institute for Health Information (CIHI) reveals that people who access palliative home care services in their last year of life are 2.5 times more likely to do so. The data, published in Access to Palliative Care in Canada, also shows that early palliative care reduced the number of visits to intensive care and emergency department visits for terminally ill Canadians in their last month of life.

UK - New guidance to help NHS patients benefit from digital technology This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The National Health Service (NHS) has issued a new code of conduct for artificial intelligence (AI) and other data-driven technologies. The code encourages companies to adhere to a set of principles that will protect patient data and make sure only the best technologies are used by the NHS to bring real benefits to patients.

UK - Government response to the Health and Social Care Committee’s report on integrated care This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The UK government has issued a response to recommendations made by Parliament’s Health and Social Care Committee in its recent report on integrated care in the National Health Service (NHS). The response sets out how government intends to address the recommendations as part of its long-term plan for the NHS. This includes annual funding increases of an average 3.4% each year to 2023/24 and continued promotion of Sustainability and Transformation Plans, along with Integrated Care Providers responsible for both quality of care and health outcomes for a defined population. 

International - Lancet Commission Stresses Need for High-Quality Health Systems for SDGs This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The Lancet Global Health Commission (LGHC), a group of academics and policymakers from 18 countries, has published recommendations on ways to develop health systems capable of reaching sustainable development goals (SDGs). Health systems dedicated to high quality care that can respond to changing population needs are required to produce better health outcomes and greater social value.

Upcoming Events

Canada - Mental Health for All
This third edition of the Mental Health for All conference takes place in Montreal from October 22 to 24, 2018. The program, designed by service providers, front-line workers, researchers, funders, policy makers and people with lived experience of mental health problems, focuses on the future of community mental health. The agenda looks at upstream strategies to promote mental health in children and youth, remove stigma, and provide appropriate and prompt treatment for mental health problems.

Canada - Public health 2019
Public Health 2019 is a national forum where professionals, researchers and policy-makers come together to strengthen efforts to improve health and well-being. The conference will be held in Ottawa, from April 30 to May 2, 2019. The call for submissions for workshops, oral and poster presentations opens on September 20, and the deadline is November 1, 2018.

Reports and Issue Portfolios

Spain - Evolution of public hospitals expenditure by healthcare area in the Spanish National Health System: the determinants to pay attention to This hyperlink will open in a new window.
In Spain, hospitals represent the largest share of overall public healthcare expenditures, which is administered by Autonomous Communities. Hospital spending has increased at a faster than total spending since 2001. This study, published in BMC Health Services Research, finds that hospital spending increases relate mainly to utilization, and not price factors. It also finds significant variation between Accountable Communities in the devolved Spanish health system.

UK - Paying for Efficiency: Incentivising same-day discharges in the English NHS This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Since 2010, hospitals in the English National Health Service (NHS) have received more remuneration for same-day discharge patients than for overnight stays. This study analyzed data for patients treated for 191 same-day discharge conditions between 2006 and 2014. It finds that the payment policy had a statistically significant positive effect in about a third of conditions. Results were more mixed for emergency conditions.

UK - Private Provision of Publicly Funded Health Care: The Economics of Ownership This hyperlink will open in a new window.
The private ownership of organizations providing services to the public National Health Service (NHS) is controversial in the UK, especially with regard to private hospitals. The purpose of this paper is to provide a non-partisan view of the ‘ownership debate’ through the lens of economic value. The paper discusses the organization of production, theories of behaviour and motivation, and the role of incentives and payments.

UK - Valued care in mental health: Improving for excellence This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Mental health care in the UK is currently diffuse and decentralized. This study, undertaken in partnership with nine mental health organizations, proposes a national model, based on organizations' experience with improvement initiatives, to support the continuous improvement of services. The aim is to offer a practical resource that provides examples of good practice and co-production to be utilized across the entire delivery system.

USA - Access Management in Primary Care. Perspectives from an Expert Panel This hyperlink will open in a new window.
Undertaken by an expert panel of patients, providers, policymakers, purchasers, researchers, product makers and payers, this Rand Company report defines optimal access in primary healthcare organizations and identifies eight priorities for improving access. First among them is routinely evaluating the degree to which patient telephone calls are answered promptly and routed appropriately.

International - The role of the assistant practitioner in the clinical setting: a focus group study This hyperlink will open in a new window.
While assistant practitioners (APs) work in many clinical settings, they are sometimes underutilized because of poorly defined roles. Undertaken in the UK, this study organized focus groups of APs and registered nurses (RNs) to explore the issue. Results highlighted a blurring of boundaries between APs and RNs, with many tasks undertaken by both.

International - The private healthcare market and the sustainability of an innovative community nurses programme based on social entrepreneurship - CoNSENSo project This hyperlink will open in a new window.
CoNSENSo is a European Union (EU) project to develop a community nursing model to support active aging in Europe’s remote mountain areas. The sustainability of the approach relies on social entrepreneurship in the healthcare market. This research, undertaken in Italy’s Piedmont region, highlights conditions for successful implementation, and finds that the private supply of healthcare services can support active aging in mountain areas.

International - Private health insurance in Germany and Chile: two stories of co-existence, segmentation and conflict This hyperlink will open in a new window.
This study compares mixed public/private healthcare insurance systems in Germany and Chile. It finds that in both countries the choice of coverage has spurred private insurers to select for risks, which compromises equity of funding, heightens the financial risks of public insurers, and reduces incentives for private insurers to operate efficiently. Both countries have now committed to reforming their insurance systems to address these problems.