The Scalpel's Blog

A smattering of opinions on health policy and NHS news from National Health Executive’s most cutting and merciless reporter, ‘The Scalpel’.

Bringing together a daily dose of sarcasm and realism with an occasional spoonful of sugar, these pick-me-ups for the healthcare manager may prove bitter pills to swallow but keep the patient’s best interests at heart.

Interested in becoming a guest blogger? Email the editor.

Our Health Heroes: NHS awards ceremony unveils shortlist

18.10.17: With the NHS facing unprecedented demand and difficult working conditions, it’s incredible that the workforce across the country still delivers great care to patients every single day. Requiring care is never a pleasant experience, but hav...

Fight the flu: how can your organisation prepare for winter?

16.10.17: Danny Mortimer, chief executive of NHS Employers, urges health and care bodies to fight the consequences of a potential flu epidemic by getting involved with national campaigns throughout the cold season. The words “winter crisis&rdqu...

Supporting chief executives to build a better NHS

04.10.17: We can spend years nurturing and supporting leaders to develop and progress into a chief executive role, yet a report by the King’s Fund found that the average tenure is just 18 months. What’s making people think about moving on so s...

Ensuring quality in the new NHS

11.09.17: Dr Marion Andrews-Evans, member of the NHS Clinical Commissioners (NHSCC) Nurses Forum steering group and executive nurse & quality lead at NHS Gloucestershire CCG, sings the praises of CCG quality leads who are working in often unseen roles...

We need your Health Heroes!

21.08.17: We are once again delighted to be the official media partner for the Our Health Heroes Awards, working alongside Skills for Health to celebrate those in our healthcare workforce who go above and beyond the call of duty. It’s important...

Turbo-boosting STPs? It’s time we got serious about ‘partnership’

27.07.17: Merron Simpson, chief executive New NHS Alliance, argues we’re missing the point of what ‘partnership working’ truly means if we refuse to recruit help from those outside the health service. Jeremy Hunt and Simon Steven&rs...

Is it right to label antidepressants ‘a prescription for murder’?

26.07.17: As the stigma about mental health decreases and more come forward to be treated for various illnesses, the number of antidepressants that are prescribed to sufferers will be set to increase. But tonight, the BBC will air a documentary argui...

Why diversity and inclusion are critical to leading much-needed change in the NHS

12.07.17: Despite 30 years of investment, the equality and diversity agenda hasn’t moved forward at anywhere near the pace we would have liked. Indeed, many colleagues have lost sight of the value this work brings. Tracie Jolliff, head of inclusion...

Confed17 open its doors in Liverpool today

14.06.17: Confed 17, the major annual NHS Confederation conference, has kicked off today in ACC Liverpool, inviting in more than 1,000 health and care leaders to discuss and review the long-term demand patterns needed in the sector. Highlights of the...

Manchester emergency services praised as city unites against attack

24.05.17: Praise has been heaped on Manchester’s emergency services and wider community as the city came together around the worst terrorist attack in its history. On Monday evening a suicide bomber, who has been named as Salman Abedi, a Libyan...

End of life care planning: why it should be everyone’s concern

10.05.17: To mark Dying Matters Awareness Week (May 8-14), Michelle Brown, deputy head of department for healthcare practice at the University of Derby’s College of Health and Social Care, explains why everyone – young or old – should ma...

Labour’s pledge to raise wages for ‘underpaid and overworked’ NHS staff

26.04.17: Shadow health secretary Jonathan Ashworth will today outline a major campaign pledge to axe the NHS pay cap, saying that staff are “underpaid and overworked”. The change is predicted to cost the NHS around £1bn, however La...

NHS England expands commissioning for ‘game-changing’ stroke treatment

12.04.17: Stroke patients are set to benefit from the expansion of a ‘game changing’ treatment which has the capacity to decrease the risk of long-term disability and save the NHS millions in long-term health and social care costs. Treati...

Developing sustainability and transformation plans

29.03.17: Lisa Robertson, HFMA research manager, discusses the emerging governance arrangements being developed to support the delivery of sustainability and transformation plans (STPs). STPs are the current focus for those working in NHS finance. Th...

The future of clinical commissioning

13.03.17: Dr Graham Jackson, co-chair of NHS Clinical Commissioners (NHSCC) and chair of NHS Aylesbury Vale CCG, discusses the changing landscape facing commissioners.  Since they were set up more than three years ago, CCGs have demonstrated a g...

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latest healthcare news

MPs to consider doubling penalty for NHS worker assault

19/10/2017MPs to consider doubling penalty for NHS worker assault

A Private Members’ Bill which would increase sentences for people found guilty of assaults on emergency workers will be discussed on Friday... more >
DH opens £15m fund for mental health crisis care

19/10/2017DH opens £15m fund for mental health crisis care

The Department of Health has announced a new £15m fund to help people in danger of having a mental health crisis. The ‘Beyond Pl... more >
Government has ‘no choice’ but to spend on hospitals

19/10/2017Government has ‘no choice’ but to spend on hospitals

The government must urgently put more funds into hospitals in the Autumn Budget, a new study has suggested. The Autumn 2017 Performance Trac... more >

editor's comment

25/09/2017A hotbed of innovation

This edition of NHE comes hot on the heels of this year’s NHS Expo which, once again, proved to be a huge success at Manchester Central. A number of announcements were made during the event, with the health secretary naming the second wave of NHS digital pioneers, or ‘fast followers’, which follow the initial global digital e... read more >

last word

The Refugee Doctor Initiative

The Refugee Doctor Initiative

Terry John, co-chair of the BMA & BDA Refugee Doctors and Dentists Liaison Group and chair of the union’s international committee, talks about a brilliant initiative that is proving mutually beneficial for overseas doctors and NHS patients alike. People say that once you’re a doctor, you’re always a doctor. Unfortuna... more > more last word articles >

the scalpel's daily blog

Our Health Heroes: NHS awards ceremony unveils shortlist

18/10/2017Our Health Heroes: NHS awards ceremony unveils shortlist

With the NHS facing unprecedented demand and difficult working conditions, it’s incredible that the workforce across the country still delivers great care to patients every single day. Requiring care is never a pleasant experience, but having a brilliant member of staff look after can make a huge difference to a quick recovery. For ... more >
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Make doing the right thing easy

11/10/2017Make doing the right thing easy

Kay Currie, professor of Nursing & Applied Healthcare Research, ‘Safeguarding Health through Infection Prevention’ (SHIP) researc... more >
STAR: an innovative app for speech therapy

11/10/2017STAR: an innovative app for speech therapy

Dr Stuart Cunningham, a senior lecturer in Human Communication Sciences at the University of Sheffield, on a new app set to support speech and la... more >
The value of health creation

11/10/2017The value of health creation

Dr Brian Fisher, vice chair of the New NHS Alliance, outlines the many benefits of investing in health creation. We live in one of the riche... more >
Developing a new type of think tank

11/10/2017Developing a new type of think tank

James Roach of the National Collaborative Group explains how the new and unique think tank is moving from rhetoric to action in order to help del... more >

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interviews

Tackling infection prevention locally

04/10/2017Tackling infection prevention locally

Dr Emma Burnett, a lecturer and researcher in infection prevention at the University of Dundee’s School of Nursing and Midwifery and a boar... more >
Scan4Safety: benefits across the whole supply chain

02/10/2017Scan4Safety: benefits across the whole supply chain

NHE interviews Gillian Fox, head of eProcurement (Scan4Safety) programme at NHS Supply Chain. How has the Scan4Safety initiative evolved sin... more >
Simon Stevens: A hunger for innovation

25/09/2017Simon Stevens: A hunger for innovation

Simon Stevens, chief executive of NHS England, knows that the health service is already a world leader when it comes to medical advances – ... more >
Improving care at the touch of a screen

08/08/2017Improving care at the touch of a screen

When it comes to dementia, having a calm and safe environment can have a substantial impact on a patient’s quality of life. NHE’s Jos... more >