Victoria Macdonald on Health and Social Care

Our health and social care correspondent analyses a new-look NHS and how changes to the health service affect you.

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July 20, 2015 1 Comment

The ‘revolving door of care': unsafe hospital discharges

The homeless, older people, those with mental health conditions.  These are the patients whose voices we rarely hear.  Even when it goes wrong and the NHS lets them down.

But for the past year, Healthwatch England, which is the body representing patients, has been conducting an inquiry into unsafe hospital discharge.  And Channel 4 News has been following them as they gathered evidence and helping record some of their stories.

We spoke to Rory MacKenna in the subway below the Strand in London.  He was sent back out on to the streets from hospital after breaking his ribs and puncturing his lungs.

In our second film we spoke to mothers who had been sent home after giving birth despite having all the symptoms of severe postnatal psychosis or depression.

And finally we filmed with Lily and Frank Roberts.  The hospital sent him home in a cab without warning his wife.  He’d had his third stroke and was clearly unwell.  Several days later he had to be readmitted.

They call it the revolving door of admissions.  They are sent home too soon and then have to be readmitted.  It costs the NHS and it harms the patients.  And according to the final report that harm can be fatal.

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July 16, 2015 8 Comments

Ambulance crisis: why taxis are filling the cracks in the system

An investigation by Channel 4 News has revealed that hard-pressed ambulance trusts are increasingly relying on taxis to take patients to hospital even in an emergency.

June 18, 2015 No Comments

New duty of candour legislation creates ‘two-tier health system’

New rules obliging the NHS to report when something has gone wrong, are not to be applied to private clinics and GPs, warns a patients’ charity.

June 17, 2015 1 Comment

IVF with donor eggs: the emotional, physical and financial strain

After years of failed fertility treatment, my consultant said I should think about egg donation. I was 45 by that stage.

June 4, 2015 1 Comment

A&E waiting times: will monthly reports make a difference?

Changes to A&E waiting times and targets are much easier to understand, but probably not that easy for hospitals to make it happen.

June 3, 2015 4 Comments

NHS: time for the regulators to sort out health care

Simon Stevens was reiterating his belief there is a need to look for local rather than nationally-imposed solutions. That one size does not fit all – especially in the health service.

May 21, 2015 9 Comments

NHS England accused of interference over hepatitis C drug

NHS England officials have been accused of trying to interfere with the appraisal of a new drug for hepatitis C sufferers due to their concerns overs its cost.

May 7, 2015 5 Comments

#NotGuilty giving courage to speak out about sexual assault

‘Amelia’, not her real name, was attacked six months ago in Oxford – but she did not tell the police. What helped her was a letter written in the Cherwell – Oxford’s

May 3, 2015 4 Comments

Who Cares: the play that puts the NHS under the knife in the election

The debate around the future of the NHS has inspired a play at the Royal Court that raises key questions about the health service. But have parties missed the chance to hear what voters want?

April 21, 2015 3 Comments

Hunt, Lamb, Burnham – and an NHS ménage à trois

There’s the married couple, Jeremy Hunt and Norman Lamb. Then a third person, Andy Burnham, comes a long to spice things up. That’s what today’s #healthdebate looked like.

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