The goal of social prescribing is to improve patients' health by providing them with a non-clinical intervention. Social prescribing aims to de-medicalise health conditions and support patients to take more control of their own health. It aims to treat patients - not illness.
In October 2016, a set of requirements for extended access was published. This was in response to the government's mandate to NHS England: "To ensure everyone has easier and more convenient access to GP services, including appointments at evenings and weekends."
A departmentalised and fragmented health service is inefficient. Information flows are weak and the patient experience suffers. Collaborative care (also known as integrated care and shared care) is a trend in healthcare reform. It can improve care in terms of quality, efficiency and the patient experience.
The number of patients needing help with their mental health is increasing. Closer working with mental health teams can reduce the pressure on GPs, and sharing medical records and diaries can make it easy to integrate these services.
A recent survey by Deloitte concluded that we're addicted to our phones. We've all seen the smartphone zombies who check in on their friends and take selfies at every opportunity. Let's not forget that our phones can save us time and enrich our professional lives too. There are many apps you can use on the move, seeing patients during your working day.
The new models of care in Scotland introduce collaborative care and multidisciplinary teams. A more extensive range of healthcare professionals will assess and treat patients. For safe and effective care, the whole team must use one set of electronic medical records.
We're heading towards a perfect storm. We're living longer, which means more of us live with at least one long-term condition. We're putting more demand on NHS services, but the NHS is under increasing pressure, and there is a shortage of GPs. The situation is not sustainable. Something has to change, and we must reimagine general practice.
The General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) came into effect on 25 May 2018. It offers protection and transparency around how organisations use personal data. How does this work within the context of healthcare? Do you need patient consent before you share medical records?
The NHS is changing. It has to if it is to offer sustainable care in the future. New models of care are emerging to meet our evolving healthcare needs:
Letham is a beautiful village in the heart of Angus, on the East coast of Scotland. It is a popular place to retire to, and almost 30% of the 3,100 people living there are over 66 years of age.