Malnourishment, alcohol and co-payments

Age UK on Monday brought out a report on malnourishment amongst the elderly in hospitals, and not being fed properly when they are there. The actual press release however talked about nurses thinking that a relative of their own who was malnourished could enter hospital and without this being picked up. This is a different issue of screening on admission rather than not eating properly as an in-patient.  Both are important and highlight the need for greater accountability from nurses themselves and weight to be an outcome indicator, rather that simply ticking the box of having a ‘system’ as referenced by the DH response.

Alcohol consumption is in the headlines today, with alcohol related deaths and admissions rising by 40% (in 10 years to 2009) and 65% (in 5 years) respectively. We don’t think anything is going to improve until prevention and repercussions are taken more seriously. This would include shortening licensing hours, increasing taxes on alcohol, fining repeat offenders notified by either the police or A&E or their parents if they are under 16.

And last week Alasdair Palmer highlighted in the Telegraph that there is an urgent need to sort out the issue of co-payments because even if you have paid for a drug privately, you can only receive it in separately from NHS care, which is often impossible. We’d like to come up with a workable solution, let us know if you’d like to be involved.

About Julia Manning

Julia is a social pioneer, writer and campaigner. She studied visual science at City University and became a member of the College of Optometrists in 1991, later specialising in visual impairment and diabetes. During her career in optometry, she lectured at City University, was a visiting clinician at the Royal Free Hospital and worked with Primary Care Trusts. She ran a domiciliary practice across south London and was a Director of the UK Institute of Optometry. Julia formed 20/20Health in 2006. Becoming an expert in digital health solutions, she led on the NHS–USA Veterans’ Health Digital Health Exchange Programme and was co-founder of the Health Tech and You Awards with Axa PPP and the Design Museum. Her research interests are now in harnessing digital to improve personal health, and she is a PhD candidate in Human Computer Interaction (HCI) at UCL. She is also dedicated to creating a sustainable Whole School Wellbeing Community model for schools that builds relationships, discovers assets and develops life skills. She is a member of the Royal Society of Medicine’s Digital Health Council. Julia has shared 2020health's research widely in the media (BBC News, ITV, Channel 5 News, BBC 1′s The Big Questions & Victoria Derbyshire, BBC Radio 4 Today, PM and Woman's Hour, LBC) and has taken part in debates and contributed to BBC’s Newsnight, Panorama, You and Yours and ITV’s The Week.
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