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    SCOTLAND AHEAD OF THE UK ON BUILDING NEW HOMES

    SNP Housing Minister, Kevin Stewart said the following while commenting on Social Security and Equalities in the Scottish Parliament, SCN reports:"These figures demonstrate Scotland's strong position when it comes to building new homes- leading the UK with the highest housebuilding rate."The SNP in government is building more homes per head of population than England by some 14% and more homes...

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    HEALTHY DIETS FOR CARE HOMES

    Joanna Cox, a manager of Chandos Lodge, said:"Food is a huge factor in our residents' lives and we want to ensure the meals we provide not only satisfy their tastes but benefit their health."Healthy eating is vital to keeping well in later life. The right spices are proven to improve longevity and well-being, while meals that are high in nutritional value help to protect cognitive functions as we...

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    DO HEALTH AND SOCIAL CARE SERVICES NEED INTEGRATION?

    Although, many integration initiatives have been introduced across the NHS; For example, vanguard sites to the prime minister's Challenge Fund and integrated care pioneers- many involving GP practices.The report accepts that evidence on the success of health and social care integration is still being produced, but it says 'all the signs' are that integrated care can better meet the needs of an...

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    LANDLORDS DIVIDED ON HOW TO VOTE IN EU REFERENDUM

    The findings show that landlords are evenly split, with 35% intending to vote leave and 35% intending to vote to remain, reports Housing Excellence.According to Richard Lambert, the NLA's Chief Executive:"Landlords, much like the rest of the British public, are divided on how they will vote in the EU referendum which means the decision looks to go down the wire."The Remain and Leave campaigns...

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    Highest records of working families since 1996

    Research has also shown that parents of young children, who were part of a couple, were almost twice as likely to be in a job. In comparison to older mothers, young mothers under 24 were only half as likely to be in work.The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said the biggest increase has been among single parent families with dependent children.Other data showed that just over half of the two...

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    What percentage of people have mental disorders in the UK?

    Percentage of adults suffering from common mental disorders:Prevalence of common mental disorders:Women (19.7%) are significantly more likely to experience common mental health disorders than men (12.5%), with the exception of obsessive compulsive disorders and panic disorders.The Time to Change campaign aims to help people to understand that mental health problems are not experienced by a small...

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    Safe Tweets, safe Twitter

    Twitter is one of the most popular platforms where users across the globe collectively contribute 500 million Tweets every day. However, it can sometimes be inevitable that you come across content that can be seen as abusive, harassment and generally violating the safeguarding rules of the Internet. The Twitter Support group want to make it safer and easier to report offensive content. They are...

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    Google Creates System to Eradicate Child Abuse Images

    Pressure was on the company to do something about the problem after it emerged that men convicted of murdering Tia Sharp, aged 12, and April Jones, aged 5, had been viewing the indecent images online before hand.The new system will use new technology to allow search engines to track images of children being raped and abused, so they can be immediately wiped in bulk from the internet and will be...

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    How Councils Can Improve Home Care

    Read the full article at Community Care.Southwark council has agreed in principle to Unison's ethical home care charter and is working with local providers to find out how they could raise pay and conditions for this group of staff.So often when the subject of pay and conditions for home care workers is raised, providers, councils and central government officers go on the offensive,...

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    Man Aged 83 is First Reported Assisted Suicide for Dementia

    Reported @ BBC News | Health on 31/5/13He was assessed as mentally competent to make the decision at the centre in Switzerland, as he was only in the first stages of the disease.He did not want to suffer as the neurodegenerative disease developed and did not want his family to see him suffer.Although there have been other cases of people with dementia, this is the first time the details have been...

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    Direct Payments to Private Landlords In Return for Regulation

    Private rented housing: improving standards for all says that in return, they would receive benefits such as moving people for social housing in to the private sector, and housing benefits could be paid directly to the landlords; this is how it currently works but is changing under the new method of direct payments which has landlords worried they will not receive their rent payments.The paper...

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    A Disabled Woman Dies following NHS Mistakes

    A series of mistakes from two NHS organisations is found to have contributed to the death of a young woman with physical and learning disabilities, the NHS ombudsman has concluded in a highly critical report that has highlighted the issue of prejudicial attitudes leading to poor care for such vulnerable patients.The report, by NHS ombudsman Dame Julie Mellor, finds that Tina Papalabropoulos,...

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    NHS under "colossal strain"

    The strain being put on the NHS is affecting front line staff and patients the hardest as 16% of hospitals have inadequate numbers of staff.Dr Peter Carter, chief executive of the RCN, has said that nurses are being put under unacceptable pressure as numbers are cut.He says the government need to see that cutting the level of staff will affect the quality of NHS service.Dr Peter Carter, chief...

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    94% of Budget Cuts to Hit Women

     98% of people who lose out on child benefit cuts are women, they are also 65% of those affected by public sector pay restraint, 80% of those affected by the housing benefit cap, 60% by the council tax benefit real-terms cut, and 78% by cuts to tax credits.Nearly 94% of the cuts to household budgets this year will directly hit women, new figures revealed last night.Cuts to child benefit and tax...

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    Refugee Charity Used to Fraud Millions

    The Charity Commission published its inquiry into the housing association last Thursday and detailed the ‘appalling abuse' by staff and trustees.The case involved 1,800 fraudulent payments, fictitious invoices, ghost employees and charity money being paid to individuals at the charity, their family members or companies connected to them.While it was set up to provide housing support to...

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    Labour MP Comments on the Welfare Vote

    Ian Mearns MP said he voted against the government's jobseekers (back-to-work schemes) bill on Tuesday because he thought the unemployed were already suffering enough from benefit sanction decisions made by the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP). The fast-tracked bill, which seeks to overturn the outcome of a court appeal ruling on the Poundland case, is expected to be passed into law...

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    Rumours of problems with G4S for asylum seekers

    The Independent, Tuesday 19/3/13In a leaked email seen by The Independent, the executive revealed that one of the firm's subcontractors has already resigned because it is not up to the task, while two others have "expressed concerns" about being able to provide the requisite services to G4S for the UK Borders Agency (UKBA).The email, first revealed by the Open Democracy network, comes...

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    Legal Action Taken over Deaths due to Poor Care

    Parents also allege that important reports were suppressed in the run-up to the local NHS trust achieving foundation trust status in March 2010.The trust said there was "no denying" families were let down in the past.The hospital is at the centre of the scandal which is now the subject of a number of investigations including a police inquiry.Since June 2011, a team of 15 detectives have been...

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    Jeremy Hunt Criticises NHS

    He said while there is a concerted effort to tackle failing hospitals, there should also be a focus on "mediocrity". Mr Hunt's comments come a month after the problems at Stafford Hospital were laid bare.The final report of the public inquiry into the scandal, published at the start of February, attacked the way the system protected corporate self-interest rather than putting patients first....

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    Campaign to Protect Whistleblowers

    Nursing Times is petitioning the Department of Health to improve protection for nurses that blow the whistle over patient safety concerns, as part of our new Speak Out Safely campaign.The "Protection for Whistleblowers" e-petition was launched on the government's website yesterday, and is supported by many staff who have already sufferedIt follows the report released by Robert Francis, who made...

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    Ageing Population will impact social services

    Next month a Lords committee will reveal the results of its investigation into the growth of the section of society above retirement age. Its chair, Lord Filkin, warned that the NHS, social care, public spending and the rest of society face dramatic change as a result. The committee has been told:• Half of those born after 2007 can expect to live to over 100.• Between 2010 and 2030 the number...

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    Vulnerable jobseekers in work programme ignored

    Providers privately admit they are focusing resources on the "easy customers" who are more likely to generate a fee, and sidelining jobless clients who require more time and investment to become ready for work, a process known as "creaming and parking," the study says.It concludes that the quality of services offered to jobseekers is being undermined because the design of the Work...

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    Ending social housing joint tenancy

    Via: Inside HousingIn a key case in 1991 involving a cohabiting couple, Hammersmith & Fulham Council v Monk, the House of Lords found that Ms Powell had the right unilaterally to end the joint tenancy of a flat she shared with Kenneth John Monk, by serving the council with notice to quit.In the recent case Sims v Dacorum Council, Michael Sims faced a similar situation. He argued that the...

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    What is the best way to change the welfare system?

    The British welfare state is undergoing a period of dramatic reform. While bringing down the overall cost of welfare is politically popular and enjoys a broad consensus among leading policy makers it carries inherent risks.There are major problems with the UK welfare state that demand solutions:In order to sustain and rebuild public support for a welfare settlement, the Government must find...

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    Cuts to benefits for wealthier claimants

     HM Revenue & Customs has written to one in 10 families with dependent children warning them that they will lose some or all of their child benefit from January 7.Families where one parent earns more than £50,000 will lose some of the benefit while those on more than £60,000 will see the payments withdrawn altogether.Child benefit is worth £20.30 a week for the first child and...

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    Cracks begin to appears in NHS

    The King's Fund review raised concern about A&E waits and finances but has said overall performance was holding up well.The think tank analysed published data on performance, including waiting times, patient surveys and safety reports.It found that on many measures performance was being maintained and in areas such as reducing the use of mixed-sex accommodation and infection control standards...

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    New ways to measure child poverty

    A new range of indicators will be introduced including family stability, worklessness and educational achievement. Duncan Smith, in a joint move with the schools minister, David Laws, will say the new measures better reflect the reality of poverty today. He will stress the most recent figures, showing that since the coalition was formed in 2010, 300,000 children had moved out of relative income...

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    Cuts to housing benefits making it difficult to foster

    It has been estimated that fostering services need to recruit a further 7,100 foster families in the next 12 months to keep up with the growing number of children in need of a home.At a time when the numbers of children in the care of the state are at a 15-year high, the Shadow Children's Minister said:I believe that foster carers need more and more consistent, support.  For too long the ...

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    Health is being affected more in poorer areas

    The places with the highest death rates were areas around Manchester and Liverpool, parts of Yorkshire, around Birmingham, and deprived boroughs of London..Deaths from cardiovascular disease (CVD) have more than halved across England overall, however the rates for men and women aged 65 or older, the decline was smaller in the most deprived communities, which has meant that the gap between the...

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    Poll shows worsening opinion of NHS reforms

    Seven in ten mentioned either of these changes meant services would get worse.The public was split over the outlook for the NHS, with 35% saying they thought things would get better and 32% making a bleak prognosis for the NHS over the next few years.Some 43% said they expected the Government's reforms to make things worse, compared with 38% in last December's survey.The number of people who...

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    "Removing NHS management contributes to lack of expertise"

    But he told delegates at a Westminster Health Forum seminar yesterday that the NHS management resource had probably been stripped back ‘too much' and that there was ‘despondency' in some CCGs about the challenge ahead.His comments come after commissioning leaders said that CCGs may need up to five years to become successful, and following gloomy warnings from the BMA chair, Dr Mark...

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    Police cells over used to detain mentally ill people

    Nathan Constable (pseudonym) - Community Care Thursday 18 October 2012The chief inspector of prisons has found that most police forces are "dissatisfied" with Mental Health Act assessment services during evenings and weekends. He also warned that police cells are being overused as places of safety for people detained under the Mental Health Act by police.On many occasions I've had an ...

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    Blind Man Tasered After Policeman Mistakes his Stick for a Samurai Sword

    Police had earlier been dispatched after reports of a man roaming around Chorley town centre in Lancs armed with a sword.A patrolman spotted stroke victim Mr Farmer walking down the street using his white stick to get around and wrongly assumed he was the swordsman.Mr Farmer said he has made a formal complaint and is pursuing legal action against Lancashire Police which has apologised...

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    "More welfare cuts will not reduce people's dependency on the state"

    There were no big surprises in the welfare cuts proposals made by George Osborne and Iain Duncan Smith today. The core intentions seem pretty clear:The recent British Social Attitudes survey showed that these kinds of cuts may well be in line with public opinion as views have hardened towards perceived 'benefits scrounger'.However, the proposals are driven by more than this. They reflect a set...

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    Hundreds of council job losses due to additional budget cuts

    Council officers warned job losses are expected to be in the ‘high hundreds' as every service faces cut backs, despite the authority having already shed 1,300 jobs over the past two years.Chief executive, John Mothersole, said:This time next year we will be cutting into the bone of services in this city. It's not a political statement, it's a logical one.These are probably the toughest time...

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    "Cuts will limit disabled people's independence"

    The government is planning to close the independent living fund (ILF) - which supplements the funding of independent living support for 19,000 of the most severely disabled people - and transfer the money to local authorities, where the needs of older people are already putting services under increasing strain. This combination of challenges to social care services is set to have a...

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    Study shows benefit cuts affect on Scottish communities

    Unemployment looms over Scotland as almost 2000 more Scots are to be consigned to the dole.The statistics have been drawn up by experts at Strathclyde University's Fraser of Allander Institute, in a study requested by Glasgow City Council to work out exactly what the swingeing cuts would mean in the real world.More than £50million in wages wasted - and £114.8million in benefits taken out of...

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    Young Women Refused Entry to a Bus for being Epileptic

    When it comes to rank unreasonableness, he's not alone. In recent years, we've had a model refused entry for being too tall, pensioners wrongly ordered off and a nine-year-old and a 14-year-old ejected for being a few pence short. In separate incidents, two mums were kicked off: one, who was heavily pregnant, for being accompanied by a noisy child, the other for breastfeeding. Most awfully, a...

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    Homeless people are likely to die thirty years earlier than the national average

    The charity for single homeless people is calling on the National Health Service to help prevent high mortality among the homeless after finding the average age of death in the homeless population is 47 compared with 77 in the general population.The research, Homelessness Kills, is believed to be the first review of mortality amongst homeless people and also found homeless people are 20 times...

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    Should service users have an entitlement to social work?

     The UK government is seeking to extend the frontiers of choice and control in adult social care beyond direct the direct provision of support to assessment. Its recent White Paper proposed the creation of a market in assessment provision, enabling people who appear to have community care needs to be assessed by organisations other than the council, such as user-led organisations or emerging...

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    Government signals national rollout of personal budgets with £1.5m cash injection

    The funding will see the project through from this autumn until April 2013, when the NHS Commissioning Board will take responsibility for further rollout of the scheme via CCGs.Norman Lamb, care and support minister, announced the funding this week, saying it would be made available subject to results from the pilot programme involving 60 PCTs, due to conclude this autumn.But the GPC said...

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    How can social care tackle its image problem?

    But ask the vast majority of the 1.8 million people that work in the care sector, cumulatively the country's biggest employer, and you'll get a much more positive response.Why does the sector find it such a struggle to, even if it's just on the odd occasion, lift its head above the parapet?Whether it's a prospectus for a care home, a training guide for care workers or a government policy...

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    Northamptonshire social care services "at risk from cuts"

    External auditors KPMG said some groups providing services could be forced to close if council funding was withdrawn.The county council said its priority was to protect vulnerable people but charity Age Concern said it was worried about the future.Currently, £265m is spent on the services from a £1bn council budget.The authority said it would need to make savings of more than £27m from the...

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    Report slams treatment of Gypsies in Scotland

    Source: Inside Housing   ...

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    Competition from Private Sector could save over £20bn

    According to a report by CBI, opening up more services to competition could save the public sector a total of £22.6bn.The organisation said 73% of school catering is still handled by the public sector, along with 98% of social housing management.It added opening up the social housing management market could save £675m and a further £190m could be saved in improving waste management.The chair...

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    Paul Burstow accuses Treasury of blocking social care reforms

    A Liberal Democrat former minister has accused the Treasury of blocking reforms of the social care system.Paul Burstow, the former care services minister who lost his job in the recent cabinet reshuffle, questioned the coalition's political will to push through funding changes deemed by charities and campaigners to be urgently needed.He blamed George Osborne's department for delaying a...

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    DWP Announce Closure of Another Remploy site

    Earlier this year Remploy announced 36 of its 54 factories across the UK, which have provided employment for disabled people since the Second World War, were at risk of closure following the withdrawal of government funding.But hopes of a rescue for the Edinburgh factory were raised when the government said in July that it was one of nine sites where there had been interest from an outside bidder...

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    Community Care Blog: When whistleblowing and mental health stigma collided

    By Andy McNicoll @ Community CareTwo topics that ministers at the Department of Health have trumpeted their commitment to in recent times are better protection for staff who blow the whistle on poor care and the need to end discrimination against people experiencing mental health issues.This week failures in both areas collided in a staggering fashion at a hearing of the Commons Health Committee...

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    Threats to Strike in Public Sector after Pension Shake-up

    The controversial changes have caused upset among trade unions, but the publication of the Public Service Pensions Bill today will see the government make good on its plans to end final-salary schemes for hundreds of thousands of civil servants, and force employees to work longer in order to receive full pensions.The government has pledged that public sector pensions will still be the ‘very...

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    World First: Blind Woman Gains Partial Sight with Bionic Eye

    Dianne Ashworth was fitted with a prototype bionic eye in May at Australia's Royal Victorian Eye and Ear Hospital, which was switched on in June.Researchers have revealed the device can restore mild vision, allowing patients to make out major contrasts and edges such as light and dark objects for the first time.The bionic eye was designed, built and tested by the Bionic Vision Australia, a...

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