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News

October 2020

Listen to a short message from Donna Ockenden as Baby Loss Awareness Week 2020 commences

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September 2020

Birth restrictions lifted for in England 

NHS England has written to all maternity units telling them to start allowing partners to attend births and pregnancy scans despite the Covid19 pandemic. The new guidance was issued after the Royal College of Midwives criticised the ban that had been enforced, accusing NHS England of ‘dragging its feet’ on lifting the restrictions. Hospital trusts have been now been advised to implement ‘innovative’ measures to keep patients and staff safe. 

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September 2020

Transparent face masks for nurses to help them communicate with vulnerable 

The government has ordered 250 thousand clear face masks to help nurses communicate effectively with people who have learning disabilities, autism, dementia or hearing loss. Thousands of the masks will be delivered to NHS hospitals and social care providers in the UK in the coming weeks. Many patients rely on reading nurses faces to understand what is happening during care. 

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September 2020

New Covid-19 measures : Social gatherings of more than 6 people banned in England 

From the 14th September groups of more than 6 people are banned from meeting for social reasons both indoors and outdoors. The rule does not however apply to schools, weddings, funerals or organised team sports. Anyone breaking the new rule could face a £100 fine. Multiple offences could apply up to £3,200. 

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September 2020

More than 50% of nurses consider joining register permanently after pandemic. 

The Nursing and Midwifery Council (NMC) has published a snapshot analysis of its Covid-19 temporary register as of 2 July 2020. Emergency measures were introduced to meet demand at the start of the pandemic allowing former and overseas trained nurses and midwifery professionals to help in the UK response to Covid-19. 49 per cent of those who responded said that is was ‘possible’ or ‘highly likely’ that they would re-join the register permanently after the pandemic. 

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September 2020

North Wales health board urged to tackle massive patient backlog resulting from Covid crisis.

Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board recently announced that it plans to slowly reintroduce services that were put on hold due to Covid-19. The chief officer of the North Wales Community Health Council, Geoff Ryall-Harvey has reacted, saying it was ‘good news’ that the services were restarting but he has concerns that the scale of the waiting list could overwhelm the health board if it isn’t tackled efficiently. He has made a plea to health board bosses : “Do everything you can. Patients are depending on you.”

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September 2020

‘Hellish’ bullying culture at North Wales health board described by a whistleblower. 

Speech therapist Bethan Mair Williams claims staff at Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board (BCUHB) were harassed and treated inappropriately. The health board has been under special measures for the past 5 five years. Williams told the Newyddion news programme that the situation was so bad it would cause her to vomit before she started work. Adrian Thomas, from BCUHB, said the concerns were being taken seriously and an investigation had been commissioned.

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September 2020

Covid-19 mental health helpline for NHS staff draws thousands of calls.

NHS England reports that more than 2 thousand 500 people have contacted a mental health helpline set up to support NHS staff during the Covid-19 crisis. Any staff needing help can phone : 0300 131 7000 or text FRONTLINE to 85258 to access psychological support from volunteers. The service is being delivered by charities such as Hospice UK and the Samaritans. 

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September 2020

Public Health England unveils plans for supermarket and restaurant calorie reduction. 

The move by PHE forms part of the agency’s ongoing efforts to persuade the food industry to create products with less fat, salt and sugar to help improve peoples’ health. Cafes, fast food takeaways and restaurants are being asked to reduce the calories in the goods they sell by 20% by 2024. The targets are only voluntary. Anti-obesity campaigners have called for them to be made compulsory. 

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September 2020

Previously unpublished letters reveal Florence Nightingale’s father’s influence on her nursing approach. 

The “Lady with the Lamp” and pioneer of modern nursing, Florence Nightingale was herself encouraged to exercise regularly and take fresh air as part of a strict family regime. A letter from her father, William Nightingale has been unearthed, instructing his daughter to exercise for ten minutes before breakfast and for a further 20 minutes later in the day. The letter also insisted that she should spend an hour outdoors every day before dinner.

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