CQC: Care Quality Commission (CQC) inspectors who visited 4 Seafarers Walk Home (owned by Community Integrated Care – CIC) located on Hayling Island, found that it was failing to meet 8 essential standards of quality & safety.
CQC: The owners of a care home at Congresbury in North Somerset have been told they must take action to ensure that people are protected from unsafe or inappropriate care. Inspectors from the Care Quality Commission (CQC) found that the Leonard Elms care home was failing to meet 6 of the essential standards of quality & safety. The home in Brinsea Road, Congresbury, provides nursing care for older people, some with dementia.
FSA: The Food Standards Agency has published a review of existing studies that explore how people manage food safety in their homes and what implications these behaviours could have on their health. It found that many people are failing to chill foods properly, aren’t following advice on food labels and aren’t sticking to simple hygiene practices that would help them avoid spreading harmful bacteria around their kitchens.
SFA: Research findings commissioned by the Skills Funding Agency show that the ‘FE Sector has come a long way in how lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender learners are treated in Further Education’.
DWP: Research published recently reports on a pilot programme under which JSA claimants with a skills need were required to attend training, or lose their benefits.
Defra: The true value of the UK’s wildlife & habitats has been revealed in 2 research reports published by Defra. The reports estimate the wildlife covered by the UK Biodiversity Action Plan and Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI) is worth approximately £1.5bn per year to the UK.
DWP: A report has been published by the Department for Work and Pensions which documents the evaluation of the Six Month Offer (6MO) including its 4 constituent support strands: volunteering; training; access to a Recruitment Subsidy; and support to become self- employed.
HPA: New estimates on the risk of developing some types of cancer after exposure to ionising radiation have been published by the Health Protection Agency's Advisory Group on Ionising Radiation (AGIR). AGIR reviewed the latest scientific evidence on the lifetime risks of developing 'solid cancers' – such as cancer of the breast, lung & colon cancer – following exposure to ionising radiation.
PC&PE: The industry-dominated Payments Council should ‘no longer have the unfettered power to decide the future of cheques, or other payment methods that directly affect millions of people’, the Treasury Select Committee says in a recent report.
The Payments Council announced on 12 July 2011 that cheques will continue for as long as customers need them and that the target for possible closure of the cheque clearing in 2018 had been cancelled. This followed pressure from the TSC which re-opened its inquiry into the Future of Cheques in April 2011.
DfT: Detailed information on specific speed camera sites has been published as part of the Government’s drive to increase transparency. So far 75 English local authorities have published some or all of their information showing accident and casualty rates as well as speeds at camera sites before & after the introduction of speed cameras.
All local authorities were asked to publish information about the effectiveness of their speed cameras as soon as practicable and provide a web link to this material by 20 July 2011. The remaining 72 authorities plan to publish their data in the next few weeks.
EC: Voters in all parts of Great Britain should expect to see consistent levels of service from Electoral Registration Officers (EROs), said the Electoral Commissionin a reportrecently, after intervening to address underperformance by 45 Electoral Registration Officers (EROs) who had consistently failed to meet performance standards.
ESRC: Reducing the risks of catching E. coli O157 in the countryside is everyone’s problem. That means we should all take responsibility - individual residents & visitors, as well as farmers & government - according to researchers working on the Research Council UK’s Rural Economy and Land Use Programme (RELU).
TUC: TUC General Secretary, Brendan Barber, has commented on the recent publication of a Health and Safety Executive (HSE) list citing the most 'bizarre' reasons that organisations have used 'safety' concerns to cancel activities or events in the past year.
CBI: The UK badly needs to invest in meeting the country’s need for improved infrastructure, to ensure that we don’t fall behind our competitors. With the public finances so constrained, much of the investment to maintain & build infrastructure will need to come from private finance. In a new report, Building Strong Foundations: Financing UK Infrastructure, the CBI puts forward a package of measures to boost infrastructure investment through effective public-private partnerships.
ScotGov: The responsibility of companies to help ensure their products are properly managed at the end of their lifecycles has been brought under the microscope in a report published by the Scottish Government.
Producers of items such as packaging, electronic equipment & vehicles could play a more effective role in the responsible management of these items at the end of their lifecycle, according to the new study. The report highlights how effective producer responsibility regimes can also drive waste prevention and reduction.
WWF: WWF expressed disappointment that the long-awaited Government response to the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) on their recommendations for reducing aviation emissions has shed little light on future aviation policy. Instead, their response ‘focussed on what the Government might do rather than what they will do’.
WWF is also uncomfortable with the Government’s projected heavy reliance on aviation biofuels. It is likely that there will be a limit on the amount of available sustainable biofuels that we can use and, therefore, they should not be viewed as a silver bullet in reducing emissions. WWF said that it is also disappointing that the Government’s analysis is so negative regarding the potential for videoconferencing to reduce levels of flying & emissions, despite WWF’s strong evidence to the contrary.
ScotGov: Scotland is in a stronger position to deal effectively with any outbreak of foot & mouth disease (FMD) in the future. That was the finding of a progress report, published recently, following Professor Jim Scudamore's review of how Scotland responded to the FMD outbreak of 2007.
The publication highlights that 31 of the 52 recommendations accepted by ScotGov have already been met or are under regular review. Due to the need to continually update contingency planning the remaining recommendations require a programme of on-going work.
CLG: New research, based on interviews with developers and the latest information about environmental technologies, shows the overall extra costs of building new homes to standards set in the Code for Sustainable Homes is falling year on year. For homes built to Code level 3 standards, average extra costs have fallen by almost three quarters in the last 3 years - falling from £4,458 in 2008 to £1,128 in 2010.
ScotGov: A list of achievements & advances for Scotland in the 100 days since the re-election of Alex Salmond as First Minister by the Scottish Parliament in May 2011 has been published.
ScotGov: A new study report, supported by the Scottish Government, has been delivered to help the Maldives
develop the country's potential for marine energy with the ambition of becoming the first carbon neutral State by 2020.
Press release & links
Demos: A study of over 15,000 children by the think tank Demos shows parenting style is one of the most important and statistically reliable influences on whether a child will drink responsibly in adolescence and adulthood. Demos found that ‘tough love’ parenting, combining consistent warmth and discipline, was the most effective parenting style to prevent unhealthy relationships with alcohol right into the mid-thirties age range.
Press release & links
CIPD: The auto-enrolment of workers into workplace pension schemes is the biggest reform to pensions for a century. The extent of the Government’s communication challenge is highlighted by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development’s (CIPD) Employee Outlook: Focus on Pay and Pensions survey, where over half (53%) of
workers state that they are totally unaware of the reforms.
The survey reveals that the auto-enrolment pension reforms – which are due to come into effect in October 2012 – will have the greatest impact on the private & voluntary sectors, with 46% & 42% respectively stating awareness.
Press release & links
Civitas: The Coalition Government is failing to realise productivity gains that are crucial for protecting the quality of NHS services, according to a new Civitas report. Andrew Lansley ‘has wasted time by trying to force through wholesale changes to health commissioning, reforms which are now widely accepted as unworkable. But the Government could save millions of pounds by focusing commissioner attention on reconfiguring specialist services that have been inefficiently managed for years’.
Commissioning London's HIV Services uses the case study of HIV care in
London to show how specific health services could be reformed without the costly overhaul of NHS commissioning as a whole. Unless these genuine savings through increased productivity are made, patients will face poorer health services with longer waits as budget cuts begin to bite.
Press release & links
PC&PE: The current priority given to preventing HIV & AIDS in the is ‘woefully inadequate’ and a new priority must be given to prevention policies if the epidemic is to be stemmed, says a Lords Select Committee in a new report. The report says that the numbers accessing care have trebled since 2000 and that HIV & AIDS remains one of the most serious public health issues confronting the Government.
Press release & links ~ Related HPA press release
IfG: Andrew Adonis has written to communities minister, Eric Pickles saying that ‘elected mayors have huge potential to drive growth in the economy but only if they are given sufficient powers’. The letter comes a week before the Localism Bill enters the final stages of its passage through Parliament.
Press release & links
PC&PE: The Commons Public Accounts Committee has published a report examining lessons from the private finance initiative (PFI) and other projects. Speaking on the publication of the report, the Rt Hon Margaret Hodge MP, Chair of the CPA, said: “… But while PFI has delivered many new public buildings and services that might not otherwise have been built, it is far from clear that it has provided value for money. At present, PFI looks like a better deal for the private sector than for the taxpayer”.
Press release & links ~ CBI comment
TUC: TUC General Secretary, Brendan Barber, has commented on the gender pay gap report published recently by the Chartered Management Institute.
Press release & links ~ Home Office comment
Ofsted: There is no reason why good practice in safeguarding & promoting children’s welfare should not be a feature of every school, according to an Ofsted report. The report found that the measures put in place by the best schools to keep children safe could be replicated by every school.
The report ‘Safeguarding in schools: best practice’ distils the features of exceptionally good practice in safeguarding in schools where safeguarding was judged to be outstanding between September 2009 and July 2010.
Press release & links