Archives for March 14th, 2001

DILEMMAS IN UK HEALTH CARE

Book News, PublicNet: 14 March, 2001

By Carol KomaromyThis book considers the major dilemmas arising from funding, organization and delivery of health care in the United Kingdom. in 2000 and beyond. ‘Health care’ is given the widest possible definition – stepping beyond the health service to include social, community, educational and government initiatives – in an analysis of the constraints on and opportunities for improving the nation’s health. A number of contemporary themes are explored: the management of financial and human resources, the evaluation of health care, participation in health care decisions, divisions in health care labour, the impact of technological innovation, balancing the provision of hospital, primary and community care and demand for curative and preventive services.

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E-GOVERNMENT ON LINE TRANSACTION SERVICES TAKING SHAPE

Headlines, PublicNet: 14 March, 2001

Pathfinder services from the Inland Revenue and Customs and Excise are setting the model for online transaction processing. The early planning of e-government provided for a range of models for tax payment. They included private sector organizations, such as Accountants, handling transactions and either receiving a fee from the government department, or adding value to the service, for which the customer paid a fee. It is now clear that central departments prefer to keep the processing ‘in house’ and are reluctant to create a market opportunity for the private sector.Currently Inland Revenue provide online processing for ‘self assessment’ taxpayers and from April they will offer employers an online service for PAYE and tax credits. Customs and Excise will launch an online VAT service also from April. This follows a successful pilot launched in April 2000.

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MEASURES TO MAKE TEACHING MORE ATTRACTIVE

Headlines, PublicNet: 14 March, 2001

A package of measures has been launched to encourage the recruitment and retention of teachers. A 200 m pound budget will be allocated over the next three years to schools in in teacher shortage areas to be spent at local discretion. Other measures are aimed at reducing the administrative burden on teachers.The new funding will be targeted on schools in high cost or challenging areas, enabling headteachers to develop solutions such as: housing subsidies, childcare support, or travel costs, or make additional salary payments to improve recruitment and retention. There will also be a “welcome back” bonus for qualified teachers who have been out of teaching for more than a year and return to the profession between Easter and Christmas.

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