NHS seeks views on proposed new standards for cancer

The NHS has launched a consultation on proposed new standards for cancer.

It says the changes, developed with clinical leaders, will help diagnose more cancers earlier and save more lives.

They aim to simplify and update cancer standards, based on the recommendations of the Independent Cancer Taskforce.

Cancer currently has nine separate performance standards, with different targets covering different routes into the system, for example, screening or a GP referral.

The new plan proposes ensuring patients have the same opportunity for faster diagnosis and treatment.

Patients, clinicians and the public are asked to share their views on the standards by 6 April.

NHS England

Study: Debunking misinformation in social media conversations

A new study aims to examine the impact of 'back and forth' exchanges on social media between false claims and debunking attempts.

Authors say research on debunking has shown properly designed corrections can mitigate the impact of misinformation.

However, little is known about the impact of correction in prolonged social media debates. 

Researchers tested competing predictions on people’s attitudes toward masks in public during the early days of the pandemic.

They found, while initial debunking generally improved attitudes and intentions, this improvement was washed out by further exposure to false claims and debunking attempts.

They concluded health professionals and science advocates face an underappreciated challenge in attempting to debunk misinformation on social media. 

Although engaging in extended debates appears necessary, more research is needed to address the unintended consequences of such engagement.


HSJ Awards 2022 open for entries

The HSJ Awards 2022 are now open for entries, with 25 awards and three new categories.

New categories this year are:

  • Covid Vaccination Programme Award,
  • Innovation and Improvement in Reducing Healthcare Inequalities Award
  • Performance Recovery Award

Good luck to all our members who are entering this year's awards.

HSJ Awards

Putting patients at the heart of tech innovation

In this article, Rachel Power, chief executive of PIF member Patients Association, discusses the importance of collaboration with patients.

She says working with patients is the only way innovation in healthcare technologies can make a substantial impact to the patient pathway and healthcare systems.

Rachel also discusses the work of the Patient Coalition for AI, Data and Digital Tech in Health, of which PIF is a member.

Business & Industry

Misinformation game-based learning platform

The World Health Organization has collaborated with game-based learning platform Kahoot! to develop a collection designed to strengthen critical media literacy skills.

It is hoped the games will help learners of all ages better navigate misinformation.

There are currently four short quizzes available to play:

  • What is "Misinformation"?
  • The Red Flags of Misinformation
  • The Importance of the Source – How to Become a Fact Checker
  • What Can I Do About Misinformation?


Call for evidence to support people with acquired brain injuries

People whose lives have been affected by acquired brain injuries (ABI) are being invited to share their experiences and give ideas on how to improve the care and support available.

The Government is asking people to come forward with their views on how to ensure a better quality of life for those who have experienced brain damage after birth.

The request for engagement is going out to those with ABI, their families, healthcare professionals and charities over the next 12 weeks.

A new programme board will look to publish a strategy to reduce the amount of injuries sustained while also improving the experiences of those with acquired brain injuries.

Views are also being sought on extending the strategy to include other neurological conditions.


Consultation: NICE draft guidance does not recommend pembrolizumab

Draft guidance by NICE  does not recommend pembrolizumab plus chemotherapy for treating triple negative breast cancer that has spread to other parts of the body.

Outlining its decision, NICE said the evidence showed pembrolizumab plus chemotherapy is more effective than paclitaxel or nab-paclitaxel, although the long-term benefit is uncertain. 

There was no trial data directly comparing pembrolizumab plus chemotherapy with atezolizumab plus chemotherapy, another targeted treatment which NICE already recommends.

Therefore, the cost-effectiveness estimates are higher than NICE normally considers an acceptable use of NHS resources.  

The draft guidance is open for public consultation until 29 March.


Podcast: Addressing women's health inequalities 

In this podcast, Helen McKenna speaks with Professor Dame Lesley Regan and Dr Janine Austin Clayton about women’s health journeys from start to finish. 

They explore why women can struggle to get medical professionals to listen to them and the impact this has on diagnosis and treatment, as well as the mental and physical effects on women themselves.

The King's Fund

Multiple long-term conditions should not be a barrier to hip replacement surgery

New research published by the National Institute for Health Research (NIHR) says having multiple long-term conditions should not prevent people with osteoarthritis having hip replacements. 

It found the surgery improved quality of life and complication rates were generally low. 

Despite this, the study found that fewer than half of those with hip osteoarthritis had hip replacement surgery.

In severe cases of osteoarthritis, hip replacement surgery is recommended. 

However, surgery might be delayed, or even ruled out, if the person has other existing health conditions. 

Researchers say this is not based on evidence as no previous research has explored whether people with multiple long-term conditions have worse outcomes than others after this procedure.


Webinar: Educating and engaging patients through digital storytelling

An upcoming webinar will outline the evidence for digital storytelling to reach and motivate patients not yet engaged.

Amy Waterman, PhD, will also discuss how digital storytelling is being used with prospective kidney donors.

The webinar takes place from 5pm on 30 March. Click on the link below to register.