Mixed-sex wards are more complicated in mental health

Mental Health

What does the government really mean by abolishing mixed-sex wards? The difference may seem small, but in mental health it’s critical, says Clare Allan.

The subject of patients being treated on mixed-sex wards has been in the news again, with health secretary Alan Johnson making a renewed promise to eradicate them.And earlier this month, the shadow health secretary, Andrew Lansley, reported figures obtained under the Freedom of Information Act which reveal that many trusts are still failing to meet government guidelines on providing same-sex accommodation for patients.


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Young Foundation: Receding Tide – Understanding unmet needs in a harsher economic climate

Mental Health

A new report by the Young Foundation warns that the recession may have more impact on Britain’s psychological well-being as on material standards of living. While many are suffering materially, many families and communities are being harmed by greater stress and anxiety, in part caused by fear of job loss and financial worries. Research indicates that men exposed to major financial stress are three times more likely to suffer from debilitating levels of anxiety and depression, and women about two and a half times.

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Mental health and learning disabilities contract under fire from Adass

Health

A new standard contract for mental health and learning disability services in England will fail to adequately support integration between health and social care, sector leaders have warned.

The Standard NHS Contract for Mental Health and Learning Disabilities comes into effect in April for one year. It will create legally binding agreements between care providers and primary care trust and local authority commissioners, in order to commit them to specific policy objectives and ensure accountability. However, existing arrangements can continue until April 2010 where contracts are well-established.

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Drug watchdog to change cost guidelines

Health

The drugs watchdog Nice is to change the way it makes decisions on NHS treatments, bringing to an end decisions on care of terminally ill patients made solely on cost-efficiency grounds.

The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence announced yesterday it would be setting out new drug approval guidelines for “less common” illnesses on 2 January.

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