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NEWS IN BRIEF: Antibiotics; Health Inequalities; Wolverhampton CCG; Hospital Overspend; New Antibiotic


23 Nov 2015

Patients Association respond to antibiotics anxiety

Antibiotic resistance is a major cause of concern that could claim 10 million lives a year by 2050, the Patients Association has said.

Chief executive Katherine Murphy said: “We welcome the Government’s focus on antimicrobial resistance, but more must be done to address this global risk to patient safety.

“It requires a collaborative effort, which must put the patient at the heart of the agenda.”

Health inequalities prevail

The scale of inequalities in life expectance and healthy life expectancy across England has been revealed in a report released by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) and Public Health England (PHE).

The data shows that wide inequalities exist not only between the most and least deprived areas of the country but also between the most and least deprived areas within local councils across the country.

The report also concludes that there has been little change in this inequality over the last decade.

Professor John Newton, chief knowledge officer at Public Health England, said: “The findings reinforce the need to address health inequality through public health and prevention as all the evidence shows that the root causes of health inequalities like these lie largely outside the health service.”

Wolverhampton CCG driving integration

Wolverhampton CCG has signed an agreement with EMIS Health to jointly offer funding towards a software package to enable local community pharmacies and GPs to securely share patient information, Digital by Default News has reported.

The Pharmacy Access system is designed to streamline the ordering and auditing of repeat prescriptions.

Pharmacists will also be able to view key clinical data in the GP record, including adverse reactions and allergies, historically prescribed acute and repeat medications.

Ian Taylor, Managing Director of community pharmacy at EMIS Health said: “This is a timely project that supports the pharmacy profession’s desire to play a greater role in the care of patients, through secure and relevant access to patient information.”

Hospital overspend reaches £1.6bn

Hospitals have overspent by £1.6bn, new figures released by Monitor and the Trust Development Authority have revealed.

Anita Charlesworth, chief economist at the Health Foundation, comments: “The latest finance data point to the deepening financial crisis facing English NHS providers, with hospitals overspent by £1.6bn just six months in to the year.

“Four out of five trusts are now in deficit, driven by spiralling agency costs and problems discharging patients.

New antibiotic launched

A new antibiotic to treat complicated intra-abdominal and urinary tract infections, and acute pyelonephritis has been launched in the UK.

MSD (Merck & Co., Inc., Kenilworth, NJ, USA) has announced the availability of Zerbaxa®, a new intravenous antibiotic for the treatment of complicated intra-abdominal infections acute pyelonephritis and complicated urinary tract infections in hospital settings.

Professor David Livermore, professor in medical microbiology at University of East Anglia, said: “Ceftolozane/tazobactam is very important because it’s a new antibiotic that treats Gram-negative infections, where a lot of resistance problems are now accumulating.”


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