Solving Mental Health online
Figures have shown a huge rise in the amount of online appointments for mental health issues. The NHS’s new mental health scheme offers online therapy to those suffering with depression and anxiety. This comes after officials flagged the need for greater attention to mental health issues due to rising numbers of people suffering in the UK, and following Theresa May announced extra funding for digital mental health services in January.
There has been a significant rise in the number of appointments that are carried out over instant message and webcam through the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) scheme. Reports have also showed that a large number of assessments where therapists make a judgement on the best form of treatment for the patient are being conducted over the phone. Access to mental health services online is expected to grow as initiatives for Cognitive Behavioural Therapy apps are being put forward.
The focus on alternatives to face-to-face help has been criticised by some professionals who say that it removes the human level of interaction, which is something that many people suffering from mental health issues avoid. It has been suggested that webcam or messenger appointments work to distances patients further from human interaction, making them counter-productive
Despite the criticism, these alternative methods for helping those with mental health issues aim to make access easier for everyone. For example, many men do not seek help due to the stigma attached and therefore providing an alternative to face-to-face appointments hope to encourage more people to seek help. Offering a service whereby more individuals will come forward and begin to address their problems, is certainly a positive for tackling mental health in the UK.
How to retain talent in the NHS
Staffing issues in the NHS are at an all time high at the moment as external factors continue to cause disruption. To ensure that medical professionals remain committed and motivated in their roles they need to have the necessary resources, support and structures in place. A number of factors are being considered and managed within the medical workplace to help attract and retain talented medical professionals, from ensuring strong leadership to enhanced workforce planning.
Strong and compassionate leadership is more important than ever within the medical world. Outside pressures affecting workers have meant that performance targets have become more difficult to achieve along with increased stress and longer hours. It is unsurprising that a number of professionals are struggling under mounting pressure, however, more attention is being paid to care for medical staff. The kings Fund, for example, are managing a programme for developing compassionate leadership through mindulfness, and other steps are being taken to ensure that staff receive strong support in their roles.
Improved workforce planning is another area that will help to fill the skills gap and bring more talent in to the medical profession. As recruitment professionals, TNA Medical plays a key role in this by communicating with medical organisations and continuing our work to place talented medical professionals in the right roles. Continuing collaboration between staffing agencies and medical organisations for specific requirements and resources is essential to attracting and retaining staff in the medical world.
Ongoing training will also ensure that more medical professionals continue their roles in the UK. Individuals need constant support and training to ensure that they are confident and able in their positions of responsibility. TNA Medical professionals receive on-going training throughout their contracts with opportunities within all medical areas. Improving skills and offering progression is key to maintaining a strong medical workforce in the UK.
£2bn Extra for Social Care in the UK
Last week’s budget announcement has led to strong criticism of the government, with accusations that Phillip Hammond’s ‘shady’ reform plans are pushing the NHS towards privatisation.
Mr Hammond promised the NHS a total of £425 million over the next three years; however the way the budget funds are allocated is likely to lead to a vast amount of closures throughout the NHS hospitals, A&E and practises. According to these claims, the money that is supposedly being put towards the NHS is not affecting the areas needing it most, but to areas that no one has really heard of.
Most of the budget funding has focussed on the STP’s, which have received criticism since the government announced them in February. According to critics of the plan there is no structure in place to properly manage the funding and no clear representation or guideline for improvements.
Despite these claims the government has assured that they are a party for the NHS, as Mr Hammond announced a further £2bn for social care with an aim to ease pressures across healthcare services. £100m of that will be given to A&E departments to combat the issues of over-crowding, which the government has suggested is due to a large number of patients visiting hospitals where they could see a GP.
Critics are saying that this is not enough to bridge the huge funding gap in the NHS and tackle the numerous issues facing healthcare services today. Fortunately, more officials and professionals within healthcare services are stepping forward to have their say on government actions concerning the NHS. Having side-stepped the issue for too long, the government need to ensure strong communication with medical professionals to highlight the issues from the inside and target areas which are most in need.
Involving NHS Staff in STP is Vital to the Future of Health Care
A new report on Sustainability and Transformation plans was published by the King’s Fund this week, highlighting place-based plans and spending for particular areas of the Health and Social care. These plans bring the NHS together with local organisations and services to agree on the future direction of services in specific areas.
It aims to shift the way the NHS delivers its services, with this report focussed on integrated services being necessary to meet the changing needs of the population.
Government is seeing pressure from organisations in the UK over the involvement of NHS staff, Nurses and patients in planned reforms to the health and care system. The report stated that the Government should make increased investment for social care an urgent priority in order for the NHS to be able to meet its aims.
Those challenging the government also say that more attention is needed to ensure that STP’s are developed correctly and with the involvement of all NHS staff. The challenges need to be addressed head on to ensure the success of this immense transformation within the health care system.
There are 44 STP’s in place across areas of the UK, tackling issues including mental health and primary care. After strong lobbying from GP’s about the inclusion of their services, the latest report puts GP’s at the forefront of bringing together primary care, community services and social care. Yet other areas are now lacking the attention they require. Those working in mental health care have now said that not enough has been done to support mental health issues that are becoming more prevalent in society, with staff having been urged to lobby as GP’s did.
In order for these STP’s to work there needs to be strong communication between NHS Staff, nurses and patients as well as strong attention and recognition from the government. All will need to be involved in the reforms to ensure that the delivery of local health and social care is as streamlined and efficient as possible.
How to manage shift work
Every experienced Doctor and Nurse will be familiar with the challenges of irregular shift work that comes part and parcel of a medical career.
Out of all the shifts, the long nights cause the most anxiety amongst medical professionals. Whilst these become more bearable with experience, living nocturnally whilst on 12 hour shifts certainly never become easy.
It is important that nurses and doctors learn how to manage their mental and physical states whilst on a night shift, to ensure the safety of their patients and themselves.
Whilst loading up on sleep during the week is an option, it is never wholly realistic in the lead up to the weeklong night shift. Taking naps throughout the day in your bedroom, however, is important to make sure you rest your mind and body.
Organisation is also key, make sure all personal issues are taken care of before your shifts start, allowing you to fully rest, recuperate and sleep during the days away from the hospital.
Getting outside for exercise will help you to be more alert on shift and sleep better when resting, as will eating healthily and regularly.
Your eating habits are also extremely important on shift. Making sure you eat at regular meal times will help with your energy pattern throughout the shift. If you have time to nap, try and get in at least 10 minutes, and always remember to set your alarm.
Night shifts can be challenging, and during the first few days you are likely to have slower response times, this means getting support and help where necessary.
These small tips will help you to be more engaged and alert during your night shift, whilst preparing your mind and body for the challenge.
Need for Nurses in the NHS
Nurses are critical for the care of patients in the NHS, meaning a fall in numbers risks shortages of care in the future of the NHS. Nurses will always be an integral part of medical care, and their presence in the current climate is more important than ever.
Currently there are vast numbers of job openings for nurses across the UK, and this shortage in applicants will see an increasingly higher demand. Progression within the nursing profession is therefore critical and specialist training is paramount to quality of care across the medical profession.
A fall in University Nursing Applications and fewer numbers of European nurses in the UK due to Brexit, mean that nurses are in high demand.
University applications have seen a significant decrease across all subjects, with higher fees introduced and bursaries cut, yet nursing was the area hit the hardest by these numbers. From 2016 to 2017 the number of nursing applicants in the UK fell by 23%. Although the government has said that it expects the numbers to rise after the first year, The Royal College of Nursing has stated that the government needs to consider solutions.
Developing a Nursing Career with TNA Medical as an agency nurse offers unique security and benefits to develop a valuable nursing career. We pay above the industry average and provide on-going support to our nurses, to ensure the quality of care remains high and our nurses remain happy. TNA Medical has strong relationships with hospitals and practises across the UK, as well as a variety of nursing positions across the country. We take care of our nurses so that they can continue to provide infallible care across the medical profession.
Ongoing Training for Nurses and HCA’s with TNA Medical.
Becoming an agency nurse or HCA with TNA Medical comes with a number of unique benefits; from having your own personal consultant finding you the right positions, to receiving pay above the industry average. We are also dedicated to making sure that all of our medical professionals receive on-going training to maintain training records and work at the necessary level of qualifications.
TNA Medical offers training to candidates across a variety of skills and areas such as Health & Safety at Work, Control of Substances Hazardous to Health, Caldicott Principles, Fire Safety Awareness, Infection Control, Food Hygiene, Manual Handling, Basic Life Support, Safeguarding (children & adults), Conflict Management and Lone Working. We are committed to our candidates’ skill enhancement and want to ensure that our agency nurses and HCA’s have the experience and knowledge to help them feel confident and able in their selected roles.
These skills and qualifications are essential for the day to day operations of all medical professionals, and they are also critical for career progression. Being able to demonstrate willing and knowledge in specific training areas has the ability to enhance job prospects, making your career move faster.
At TNA Medical we are constantly looking to build on the services and training that we provide and therefore we consider any area our candidates require for training enhancement. We work with our Medical candidates to make sure that they have everything they need to excel in their specific positions so that we can provide a strong team of highly skilled candidates to the medical profession.
Crisis for the NHS?
The latest BBC News report to cover the NHS spoke of a leak in the system revealing an all-time high of patient admission. The report claims that the NHS is in a resource crisis and has been pushed to its limits over the Christmas period.
According to the BBC report, patients experienced extremely long waits in A&E as hospitals struggled with bed shortages. This came after Jeremy Hunt had laid out a four-hour target for A&E, something which he later said may have to be relaxed.
Yesterday Labour challenged the government on the issue of the NHS. Jeremy Corbyn stated that the government was not doing enough to address the issues with the NHS and said that the PM was ‘ignoring the views of medical experts’.
Janet Davies, chief executive of the Royal College of Nursing (RCN), had apparently stated that nurses, who wanted to give the best care they could to their patients, were told to discharge them early too free up beds.
Trusts are certainly struggling and this has nothing to do with the staff working on scene. In fact, what is needed is more great staff filling the NHS to provide the required service and care. Furthermore, more attention needs to be paid from the top in terms of budget allowances and resource management. Hospitals are in desperate need of qualified Doctors and Nurses who are dedicated to the Medical profession and will help the NHS services to maintain their levels of quality and commitment to patients.
Christmas in the Medical Profession
Doctors and Nurses are needed more than ever at Christmas. Not only is this the busiest time of year for hospitals, other medical sectors such as care and nursing homes are also in high demand as staff are needed 24/7 to ensure specialist care is available whenever necessary.
Nurses and Doctors work relentlessly over the Christmas period to ensure that people in need at this time of year receive the support they need. Medical staff are essential in this situation; not only do they provide the specialist medical support when needed, they also provide indispensible emotional support that many people are other without at this time of year.
Nurses provide essential care to the elderly and the unwell at Christmas. They are the ones who create a positive and supported environment and ensure that those under their care have the opportunity to enjoy Christmas in a comfortable environment with people around them.
It is an unfortunate fact that many elderly people in care homes and hospitals will not receive one visitor over the Christmas period, and many spend their Christmas day in care. It is the vital role of nurses within these settings to ensure that these people are cared for.
Throughout the UK, the medical world desperately needs more skilled nurses. This extremely rewarding profession is essential for all the people in need this Christmas and throughout the year to provide the vital medical and emotional support to those in need.
The NHS is in urgent need of qualified nurses
Nurses are integral to the NHS, their skills and expertise are vital to saving lives. However, NHS officials are coming under fire for ‘diluting’ medical staff and nursing teams with unqualified support staff.
As these support staff are not qualified medical professionals, they cannot provide the same level of care or competency as trained nurses. Hospitals in England now have the lowest amount of qualified nurses on the ward, and in some places care assistants actually outnumber nurses.
This shows the urgent need for qualified nurses in the UK, which means an increasingly high demand for those finishing their studies or coming back from time abroad. The NHS are said to be bringing in a new training plan for nurses next month under the job title ‘nursing associate’ where unqualified nurses will be able to train on the job. This is being established in an effort to secure more qualified nurses of a higher caliber with valuable skills and experience across hospitals in the UK.
Amongst cuts and budget issues surrounding the NHS at the moment, government officials are being called to think twice about changes and cuts made to NHS staff; they are the backbone to excellent care and improved services across the NHS. Replacing qualified professionals for untrained staff is a risk to patient wellbeing and should be the absolute last resort for the government.