The public’s concerns about the NHS have been reflected in the political parties’ manifesto promises. But what do the promises add up to, and is the NHS safe in anyone’s hands?
The last data on NHS performance measures before the election, released this week, shows us what the incoming government will be inheriting. So what does it tell us?
National waiting time performance was meant to be back on track by the end of the year so, with the new waiting times data released by NHS England, how have things been?
It's hard to disagree with the principle that both costs and effects of treatments need to be weighed in order to make decisions about improving value for money and productivity. For a majority of the public however, this is not a principle they hold.
If population health is to be protected, funding for the NHS needs to be safeguarded, but other budgets – for housing, education and leisure facilities – are important too. When it comes to investing in public health measures, which interventions do the public favour?
After the 18-week waiting time target was breached earlier this year, Jeremy Hunt announced £250 million to bring it back under control. We review the latest data to see how successful this has been so far.
With hospital workloads increasing on all fronts, John Appleby takes a look at the key trends and data to explain what's going on.
How long is it reasonable to wait for treatment of depression after being referred by a GP? The results from the 2013 British Social Attitudes Survey are revealing and suggest that public expectations exceed current policy ambitions.
On the face of it, the CDF would seem perhaps to be a good thing, helping improve the quality of life for people at the end of their lives. But is it either a fair or efficient way for the NHS to spend its limited budget?
Over the past few years we have seen several high-profile failures of care in NHS acute hospitals in England, leading many in the system to question the ability of performance management and regulatory mechanisms to identify and act on poor performance.
If in 2013/14 the NHS struggled to maintain performance even with a recruitment round, the chances it can continue to do so with fewer, rather than more, staff look non-existent, says Richard Murray.
In The Commonwealth Fund's comparative study of health system performance in 11 countries, the UK ranks first across a range of measures covering quality, access and efficiency of care. But can rankings only tell us so much?
The last time the NHS fell into deficit it came to many as something of a surprise. This time – going by the responses in our latest quarterly monitoring report – it’s looking rather predictable.
With due credit to the hard work of NHS staff and the hours spent on planning, A&E performance this winter is better than it was last year. But why is this? Richard Murray takes a look at the figures in a data blog.
Whichever way you look at it, responding to Francis and the associated reports was going to be a challenging balancing act for the government.
In light of our September 2013 quarterly monitoring report, James Thompson investigates the reasons behind the recent decline in the NHS hospital and community health service workforce in England.
Published in the BMJ Quality and Safety today, a research project has examined how quality and safety is prioritised across the NHS in England. Michael West discusses the highlights of this work on the culture of care.
David Oliver looks at the direct and indirect costs associated with falls and fractures, and how we can disentangle these from the costs of the multiple morbidities people who fall often live with.
Can you change culture from Whitehall? Catherine Foot sets out six opportunities for the DH and NHS England to help them prioritise quality of care and safety for patients.
As the NHS now enters its 66th year, how far have we got towards Darzi's vision of clinical and organisational leaders collecting data on quality and using it to continuously improve care?