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Extra cash and a brave new vision

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This week’s personal blog is so hot off the press that the paper with the Right Hon. Alan Johnson’s speech printed on it is still warm to the touch. Yesterday Adorable Alan made his statement to the House of Commons on health and social care.
His speech started with the anticipated boast – 1 million more operations each year, 100 new hospitals, reduced waiting times and lower mortality rates, particularly for cancer and cardio vascular diseases.

He went on to talk about the Darzi interim report which spells out a vision for world-class health and healthcare in England. This is important to note: Mr Johnson can speak only for England now that political devolution is firmly embedded within the UK.

Via the comprehensive spending review, extra cash is going into the NHS to help realise this brave new vision for healthcare.

But community nurses are bound, like me, to be more interested in what the plans are for primary care and how they are likely to be affected by reform and change.

A hundred new general practices are promised in the 25 per cent of PCTs which happen to serve the most poor of areas, with a remit of going all out to prevent illness as much as treating it. Diseases happening as a result of poor lifestyles have to be successfully confronted if the nation’s health is to see reduced morbidity and mortality.

Another promise is that half of all surgeries will be open at weekends and evenings, allowing the working population easier access to practices.

10 October was also mental health day, so I hope you all enjoyed an upbeat one and this blog comes with my best wishes for you all to enjoy excellent and robust mental health. Having suffered from two miserable attacks of depression in recent years I know very well how important mental health is. It looks as if the opportunities for us to have best possible mental health are about to improve as by 2010 new psychological therapies will, apparently, be widely available.

And, do not worry if you are soon to be treated in a hospital - a major ‘clean up’ is also on the way in the hope that hospital-acquired infections will become a wonderfully rare thing.

It is good to write about promising news – but successful implementation will be the best news of all.

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