Archives for December 16th, 2002

GRANT WILL REWARD PLANNERS WHO MEET PERFORMANCE TARGETS

Headlines, PublicNet: 16 December, 2002

Local councils which deal quickly with planning applications will get more money from the government under a scheme announced by the Planning Minister Jeff Rooker.He said new figures show the speed with which authorities process applications is improving, but only slowly, and a number of authorities are lagging behind. Announcing the money for the performance scheme Lord Rooker said councils had to play their part in delivering thriving communities. “I am pleased to see 90 authorities are on our improvers list and 23 are meeting all three of our tough targets. These authorities are giving their communities the service they deserve,” he said.

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ANALYSIS OF CLINICAL RISK COULD HELP END BLAME CULTURE

Headlines, PublicNet: 16 December, 2002

A discussion document published today looks at ways in which doctors, managers, the government and patients can understand and reduce clinical risks in health care and improve the safety of patients.The BMA paper, ‘Patient Safety and Clinical Risk’, puts forward a new model for addressing risk. It accepts that risk can never be completely eradicated but says the health service will be under increasing pressure to ensure that avoidable problems are minimised.

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DECENTRALIZING THE CIVIL SERVICE

Book News, PublicNet: 16 December, 2002

RAW Rhodes, P Carmichael, J McMillan and A Massey.This book assesses the UK’s changing civil service in the wake of two decades of public sector management reforms and New Labour’s constitutional reform programme, most notably devolution to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The authors explore two controversial propositions. First they ask if Britain is moving from the unitary, strong executive of the ‘Westminster’ model to a differentiated policy characterized by institutional fragmentation. Second, they consider whether an unintended consequence of recent changes is a ‘hollowing out of the state’. Is the British executive losing functions downwards to devolved governments and special purpose bodies and outwards to regional offices and agencies with a resulting loss of central capacity.

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