Archives for September 2000

WHAT NOT HOW SAY COUNCILS

Headlines, PublicNet: 25 September, 2000

There is concern that the Government is bringing in prescriptive bodies to manage joint health and social care – where modern partnerships are already working. The Local Government Association leaders have asked that health ministers to focus on what local and health authority partnerships have delivered and not the mechanism for delivery.The concern is that the NHS plan does not acknowledge that many health and local authorities have already integrated their health and social care services within existing legislation, prior to the flexibilities established in the Health Act 1999. The LGA wants the proposed new care trusts to be jointly owned and jointly directed by health and local authorities.

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FAIRER FUNDING FOR NHS IN SCOTLAND

Headlines, PublicNet: 25 September, 2000

Hospitals and health services in Scotland will see a fairer distribution of resources over the next five years – without any losing out. The Health Minister Susan Deacon has announced that new money will be injected into the NHS in Scotland to meet the findings of the Arbuthnott review – “Fair Shares For All” – on the fairer distribution of resources. That will enable investment in areas of need, without the need to siphon off money from those areas seen to be relatively better off.On average, all health boards will receive a 6.5 per cent cash increase – more than twice the rate of inflation. Some will receive further money to increase the investment in those areas which need it, such as Glasgow, for deprivation, and the Highlands, for tackling the delivery of care over remote areas. The 12 million pounds announced to meet with the recommendations of the Arbuthnott review come on top of a general announcement of funding levels for Scotland, which will see more that four hundred million pounds more money available for health spending in Scotland next year compared with this.

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LEADERSHIP FOR STRATEGIC CHANGE

Abstracts, PublicNet: 25 September, 2000

Landrum N E, Howell J P, Paris LLeadership & Organization Development Journal, (UK), 2000 Vol 21 No 3

Start page: 150. No of pages: 7

Points out that more must be known about the effectiveness of teams in designing and managing organization-wide strategic change as organizations move towards more democratic, team-based structures. Assesses the value of change led by a single, charismatic leader against change led by teams, and suggests that team-based change may be longer lasting and more responsive to future needs for change. Considers the type of organization that will support team-based change and proposes that organizations in which power is widely spread will be better suited to this, than those which emphasize charismatic leadership. Discusses if teams can block a charismatic leader in whom they have little confidence and concludes that they can do this. However, also believes that teams can enhance the efforts of a charismatic leader.

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NHS RECRUITMENT DRIVE ACCEPTS NEED FOR CHANGE

Headlines, PublicNet: 22 September, 2000

A major recruitment drive to attract people to work for the NHS in London and the South East is to focus on making the prospect more attractive. The thrust of the drive is focussed at changing the experience of the job as much as relying on a traditional advertising-based recruitment campaign.It will target the disincentives to work, such as lack of childcare and housing. An extra thirty million pounds is being injected into improved childcare. Every Trust is to have a child-care co-ordinator who will act as a parents’ advocate for flexible working patterns NHS managers have also been asked to consider making special efforts to retain staff who may have been planning to retire early.

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HAT MAKES A DIFFERENCE

Headlines, PublicNet: 22 September, 2000

The Stonebridge Housing Action Trust (HAT) in Harlesden, London has been making a real difference to child poverty. It has been praised for its parents’ programme, its learning centre, homework club and employment of local labour in the estate’s redevelopment.The HAT has been highlighted as one of the successful initiatives to bring down the number of children in homes where no one is in work, as revealed in the Government’s second annual report on poverty. In the three years to Spring 2000 the number of children living in households where no one is in work fell by more than 250,000.

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INNER CITY SCHOOLS IMPROVE FASTER

Headlines, PublicNet: 21 September, 2000

Key stage results announced by the DfEE show that inner city schools have made significant improvements in both English and maths. The results showed improvements across the country of 3 per cent in maths and 4 per cent in English, meaning that the Government is on target for its 2002 goals. 72 per cent of 11 year olds are reaching the expected standard in maths as are 75 per cent in English.Tower Hamlets in East London is the most improved Local Education Authority in the country with the highest percentage increase in the number of children achieving Key Stage 2 (Level 4) in both English and maths.

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TIGHT VETTING MAKES BETTER REGULATION

Headlines, PublicNet: 21 September, 2000

The Financial Services Authority (FSA) has been praised for the rigorous test it is applying to new regulation. The Cabinet Office is overseeing a move across Government to make regulation less burdensome, and its Minister Mo Mowlam has welcomed the authority’s approach to financial regulation.The FSA subjects new regulation to detailed cost/benefit analyses, risk assessments and consideration of the impact on small businesses. The FSA is seeking optimum regulatory efficiency by consolidating and harmonising the rules of the previous regulators which the FSA will replace.

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WHEN EVERYTHING ISN’T HALF ENOUGH – WORK LIFE BALANCE

Abstracts, PublicNet: 21 September, 2000

Wetlaufer SHarvard Business Review, (USA), Mar – Apr 2000 Vol 78 No 2

Start page: 28. No of pages: 7

Explores the need for a balanced personal approach to achieving work and life goals. Uses a fictitious case study of a high achiever from an underprivileged background who has built material and business success at the cost of personal isolation and subsequently comes to question the value of what he has achieved. Puts forward views from a psychiatrist, a psychoanalyst, a Silicon Valley based entrepreneur (who has moved away from the lifestyle described in the case) and a writer of books about personal growth. Advocates spending time reassessing priorities, re-establishing family links and making some conscious choices about goals and values in order to move forward with greater energy and enthusiasm. Emphasizes that this cannot be achieved in isolation and requires both professional and family involvement.

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DENTISTRY TO BE MODERNISED

Headlines, PublicNet: 20 September, 2000

NHS dentistry is to face a radical scale and polish in a hundred million-pound investment which the Government says will improve the quality of dental care and empower patients. The package, built out of the NHS Plan, aims to deliver the Prime Minister’s commitment to make NHS dentistry available again to all who need it.To combat existing problems patients can experience in finding an NHS dentist, health authorities will, for the first time, be able to commission contracts for dentistry locally, just as they can for other kinds of primary care. Patients will be able to use NHS Direct to find an NHS dentist, and are promised better and more easily accessible information about their dental treatment in the surgery, including itemised treatment plans and receipts, so that they can be sure exactly what treatment they are getting and whether it is being provided by the NHS or privately.

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FUNDAMENTAL REVIEW OF FINANCE

Headlines, PublicNet: 20 September, 2000

Greater flexibility for councils to borrow, more transparent education funding and new opportunities for business to invest in local communities are among the options set out in a new green paper on modernising local government finance. The green paper follows long-term lobbying by local government for greater freedom and flexibility in their finance choices.Local Government Minister Hilary Armstrong says that turning the paper into legislation would bring an end to the situation where councils have to get permission from central government every time they want to borrow to fund capital investment. It will also give back to councils some leverage over the business community. No longer responsible for setting the business rate, there is the opportunity to raise a supplementary business rate, in consultation with the business community. This would be linked to additional business services for the business community.

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