NHS 10-year plan launched in bid to save 500000 lives

Desiree Burns
January 8, 2019

The General Medical Council (GMC) suggested the United Kingdom should consider migrant workers in future workforce planning after a poll revealed many doctors were considering quitting the NHS or cutting their hours because they felt stressed or overburdened.

This is imperative for effective future planning given the ageing population and the fact that doctors are treating patients with more complex needs, though we await further detail on how this will be delivered'.

"This will mean a step change in the recruitment of worldwide nurses to work in the NHS and we expect that over the next five years this will increase nurse supplies by several thousand a year", the document says, adding that a workforce plan will be published this year.

The NHS Long Term Plan, which covers the next decade, will outline precisely how the health service will spend the extra funding promised by the prime minister in June past year.

The report - which is long on buzzwords and short on substance - also referenced the use of artificial intelligence to aid decision-support, the use of predictive tools to support the development of local health services, and linking genomic "and other data" to support the development of new treatments.

GPs, mental health and community care are expected to receive the biggest funding increases, as plans look to decrease the reliance on hospitals (which now use around half of the £114bn frontline budget).

It includes 10 priorities and 10 milestones for digital healthcare, with the broad promise that at the end of the next decade, there will be "an NHS where digital access to services is widespread". "We are completely committed to supporting NHS organisations on all aspects of this journey from technical education, to integrating new technology into services and care pathways to the design of highly usable and accessible patient-facing solutions".

Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers, which represents hospital and ambulance trusts, said: The funding settlement - while welcome - does little more than cover rising costs and demand.

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Up to 500,000 lives could be saved under plans for the NHS in England over the next decade, health chiefs claim.

She said that the new technologies would be introduced as part of a 10-year plan, with Baroness Dido Harding, the former CEO of internet service provider (ISP) TalkTalk played a key part in aspects of that plan. They will have greater flexibility in their work, be supported by the latest technology that works for them, and be helped more with their own mental health and wellbeing. "Dame Donna Kinnair, acting chief executive and general secretary of the RCN, called on NHS England and the government to "urgently address" [these] chronic shortages to make the plan the success it deserves to be".

In its long-awaited long-term plan, published today, the commissioning body said it aims to "make greater use of community pharmacists' skills and opportunities to engage patients".

There's a focus to reduce health inequalities in care across England.

It is welcome too that the government is recognising that patient mental health conditions deserve to have the same access and quality standards as those with physical health problems, which the BMA has long called for.

The NHS added that it will become the first health service in the world to offer whole genome sequencing for children with cancer and young people who have a rare genetic disorder, in addition to adults suffering from certain rare conditions or specific cancers.

The health service will take a more active role in helping people to cut their risk factors: stopping smoking, losing weight and reducing alcohol intake. It is vital we have the right staff in the right places to provide care, and they need the right facilities to do so.

Our Long Term Plan will ensure the NHS continues to be there, free at the point of use, based on clinical need, not ability to pay, better resourced with more staff.

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