NHS

Danfox Davies : The Genetic Grinch Scenario

(or How Gene Patent Trolls Stole Your Food)

This article is made of a few different parts. The first is a hypothetical dystopian scenario, but one very much rooted in our lives and perfectly possible trajectories of trends. Company names and product names mentioned are used only as EXAMPLES in that part of the article, and no bias or prediction of actual corporate actions or combinations is intended. The fact that I have to say this makes some of my point for me.

The second deals with the present in the USA, and places the reader in the position of an American plains arable farmer, finishing with a mild dipping of toes into conspiracy conjecture.

The third compares the direction of the GMO food industry with that of pharmaceutical firms and puts it against the backdrop of TTIP/TPP/TISA negotiation.

The fourth explains more reasons why banning GMOs will not help.

The fifth is to say you should decide what you CAN do, and makes suggestions.

YOU WOULDN'T STEAL A LUNCH

Confidential Healthcare Data to be shared with Pharmacists

Monday, 10 August, 2015 - 23:15

In what is effectively a forerunner to the controversial Care.data project from NHS England Pharmacies (including of course Boots, Tesco and Superdrug) will now have access to patient’s confidential data (the so called 'Summary Care Record'). This is being rolled out across England following a pilot scheme in 140 pharmacies where almost 2000 patient’s records were accessed.

Second Class English

Craig Burrows's picture

UK overseas charity workers no longer qualify for free National Health Service (NHS) in England but do in Wales, Scotland & Northern Ireland! Us English are second Class Citizens in the UK! The Queen may well award you an MBE etc. but you would end up selling it to pay medical bills. English charity workers worldwide are doing great work often paid very little. How many English citizens will now be forced to return home or not volunteer in the first place? 

When Scotland, Northern Ireland & Wales have legislative bodies that vote on domestic policies, England does not. How come we allow MPs from the other nations to vote on English only issues? From tuition fees to the NHS the English subsidise the rest. Devolved power has dis-empowered the English. Our political system is broken & I see none of the main parties wanting to fix it with anything more than a band aid. If you live in England you will probably end up paying for the band aid & then paying again for it again for Scotland, Northern Ireland & Wales! 

 

FAQ's - Where do You stand on the NHS?

I frankly cannot understand how any government, indeed anyone who cares about our society, could push for anything less than a national, universal and well funded, accountable health system.

I've followed the debate on changes to how healthcare should be delivered, since I became interested in politics. I've always been worried that the kind of stories we hear about from countries with mixed models, or insurance systems linked to employers could become a reality here if we don't stick to our principles on a publicly owned and accessible NHS.

I have a young family and thanks to the NHS, I know I can take my children to my GP or hospital and have any issue dealt with quickly, professionally and without having to worry about how much it will cost.

Manchester £6bn NHS budget: Osborne's power shift labelled ‘arse about face’

Greater Manchester will be the first region in the UK to be handed full control of its £6billion health and social care budget.

Chancellor George Osborne arrived at Manchester Town Hall this morning to unveil the ‘groundbreaking’ plans which will see the local authorities given power over every penny spent on local health services.

Friday, 27 February, 2015 - 15:00

NHS - Calling for a minor change in Policy..

When it comes to policy on the NHS, I am proud to be a member of the Pirate Party; we have been clear about our commitment to the NHS, and clear what we think could be done to make it better. 
I should be clear; the party has said that it wants to bring outsourced services back into the NHS:

"We all trust the NHS with our lives. In return for that trust, the NHS should ensure that it is using the funds apportioned to it as effectively as possible, even when an effective service isn't the cheapest option."

"All the skills to deliver healthcare from start to finish, from cleaning to surgery and from transport to transplants, should be available within the NHS."

NHS: Big Brother Knows Best, Your Decisions Mean Nothing.

Danfox Davies's picture

In yet another act sure to increase the speed of George Orwell's rotations in his grave, the NHS has decided that the opt-out forms I pointed out to many of you a year ago are not worth the paper they are printed on or emails they are sent in. Because, you see, you might have not understood fully the implications of opting out of your data being shared with private companies.  

George Walkden : Clinical trials and tribulations: a role for Europe

It’s hard to imagine a better fairy-tale villain than a big pharma company. There’s something undeniably sinister about these vast, faceless titans with their unfathomable methods and international reach; so much so that it’s sometimes an effort to remember that, actually, they’re the ones who develop and mass-produce the drugs we use to stay alive. For that we owe them thanks – but let’s not get sentimental about it. These companies are still companies, and they have their own agendas and priorities, which often end up in conflict with those of the average mortal.

One instance of this conflict is the pharma companies’ vice-like grip, via patents, on the production of newly-developed drugs. This can put heavy financial pressure on health services, particularly in developing countries. Another conflict, which is the focus of this article, involves the publication of clinical trial data. Clinical trials are carried out on a massive scale as part of the process of bringing a new drug onto the market: the trials are meant to determine whether the drug is effective and safe, and whether patients would benefit from being prescribed it.

The problem, as Ben Goldacre clearly demonstrates in his excellent book Bad Pharma, is that the decision whether or not to publish the results of a given trial is determined by factors that are anything but scientific. Most worryingly, there is a strong bias towards publishing only positive results: if a trial’s results are negative, or inconclusive, there is a much higher likelihood that they will be stuffed into someone’s desk drawer and never see the light of day. This isn’t a problem that’s unique to industry-sponsored studies, but it certainly seems to be much worse there: a 2006 review found that 78% of industry-sponsored studies showed positive results for the drug in question, while only 48% of independently-funded studies came up with a favourable outcome. Hardly surprising given that pharma companies stand to gain from presenting their drug in the best possible light, but deeply worrying.

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