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Welcome to the Commissioning News online newsfeed. Here you’ll find all the latest research, news stories, policy updates and guidelines. View our other newsfeeds for more subject-specific news.

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GP Workload strain compromises patient safety

Unmanageable workload means GPs are struggling to provide safe care to patients, according to the results of a BMA survey.

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Image source: BMA

Findings from the recent survey of GPs in England highlight the alarming impact spiralling levels of demand are having on GPs, many of whom are increasingly unable to cope. Based on more than 5,000 responses, the survey found that 84 per cent of GPs report that unchecked and growing workload pressures are undermining their ability to provide safe and quality care. Of this figure, 57 per cent described their daily workloads as ‘unmanageable’ with a further 27 per cent saying that excessive pressures are directly impacting standards.

Read the full overview here

Read the full survey results here

Technology enabled care services

TSA, the industry body for technology enabled care, has published Putting people first: commissioning for connected care, homes and communities.

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This report looks at how the care technology sector supports health and social care commissioners to commission technology enabled care services that meet the growing and changing needs of the entire system.  One of the themes included in the report is that commissioners need to ensure the commissioning approach focuses on outcomes and not inputs.

Unmet need for health and social care: a growing problem?

There is a great deal of focus in the health and care system on measuring the quality of care being provided. But what about care that isn’t provided at all? | The King’s Fund Blog

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We have published several reports this year highlighting pressures in community-based services, including social care and district nursing. These pieces of research raised concerns about changes to the availability and quality of services as a result of rising demand and insufficient funding and staff numbers. The reports also raised concerns that these pressures might be leading to rising levels of unmet need.

Unmet need is difficult to define, and harder still to measure. This would be true in any setting, but particularly for services like district nursing that are delivered in people’s own homes. People who are not receiving district nursing care but would benefit from it, or those who are receiving some care but require more than they are currently getting, are often out of sight. There are no overcrowded waiting rooms or queues to bring this unmet need to light.

Read the full blog post here

A Structured Transition Program Among Young Adults With Type 1 Diabetes

Pyatak, E. et al. Journal of Adolescent Health. Published online: November 23 2016

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Purpose: We identified and treated young adults with type 1 diabetes who had been lost to follow-up during their transfer from pediatric to adult care, comparing their clinical, psychosocial, and health care utilization outcomes to participants receiving continuous care (CC) throughout the transition to adult care.

Conclusions: Our study suggests that, for young adults with a history of lapses in care, a structured transition program is effective in lowering A1C, reducing severe hypoglycemia and emergency department utilization, and improving uptake of routine diabetes care. Loss to follow-up and psychosocial concerns remain significant challenges in this population.

Read the full abstract here

Clinical commissioning groups will be rated on sepsis care

Wise, J. (2016) BMJ. 355:i6361

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Image source: Maurizio De Angelis – Wellcome Images // CC BY-NC-ND 4.0

Bruce Keogh, NHS England medical director, announced that a sepsis specific indicator will be included in the clinical commissioning group information and assessment framework alongside metrics on cancer, dementia, diabetes, mental health, learning disabilities, and maternity care.

Keogh made the announcement at the launch of a new public awareness campaign, led by Public Health England and the UK Sepsis Trust, which aims to help parents and carers of young children to recognise the symptoms of sepsis and to know when to seek urgent help.

A report into sepsis by the National Confidential Enquiry into Patient Outcome and Death, published last year, found that 45% of patients with sepsis who were admitted to hospital with no other obvious problem either died or were left with a disability.

Read the full article here

Changing risk behaviours and promoting cognitive health in older adults

A summary of reviews supporting the commissioning of interventions across a range of health behaviours for older adults. | Public Health England

This resource is intended for local authority and clinical commissioning groups to identify what types of interventions they should focus on to help the uptake and maintenance of healthy behaviours and promote cognitive health among older adults living in the community.

It is also intended for providers of lifestyle behaviour change programmes to support the development of evidence-informed prevention packages for older adults.

It is produced in a way that makes it accessible to public health managers and practitioners working in the public, private and third sector.

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Image source: http://www.gov.uk