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?
Ninety-two doctors have been in the news recently over their decision to opt out of the government's plan to publish outcomes data for named consultants. But is publishing outcomes like this the right thing to do?
In his latest blog post, David Oliver argues that new NHS initiatives should be tested for a longer period of time in order to deliver better outcomes across the board.
Pressures on accident and emergency departments have hit the headlines recently. But what are the facts about A&E attendances?
With the urgent and emergency care system under severe pressure, Nigel Edwards looks at how the problems around increasing demand could be addressed.
Are the public’s views about the NHS – in particular their satisfaction with the NHS – shaped, influenced or, in some way, linked to support for or identification with political parties?
In his British Medical Journal data briefing, John Appleby examines trends in the number of hospital beds and wonders how low we can go.
Anna Dixon gives her thoughts on the Nuffield Trust's health and social care ratings review into whether there should be a summary rating for hospitals and other care providers.
While demands on accident and emergency departments have always received great attention, Robert Royce highlights that many are still struggling to cope.
While long-term trends in delayed transfers of care might be reducing, our latest quarterly monitoring report revealed some concerns from NHS finance directors. James Thompson explores the figures in his blog.