Monthly Archives: March 2013

The 2011 revision of the global strategy for the diagnosis, managment and prevention of COPD (GOLD) – why and what?

Vestbo, J. et al. The Clinical Respiratory Journal, 2012; 6(4): 208-214

The Global Initiative for Chronic Obstructive Lung Disease (GOLD) has published a strategy for diagnosis and for management of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) since 2001 and this has formed the basis for numerous national and regional guidelines.OBJECTIVES: We describe the background for the 2011 revision of the GOLD document.METHODS: The GOLD document is updated annually and revised every 5 years based on published research as well as an evaluation by an expert panel of how to best formulate and disseminate knowledge on COPD.RESULTS: The GOLD 2011 revision states that spirometry is required for making a clinical diagnosis of COPD. At the same time, the document has less emphasis on spirometric evaluation of disease severity and launches a combined assessment taking symptoms, spirometry and history of exacerbations into account. This is matched with initial treatment for COPD where smoking cessation, pulmonary rehabilitation and physical activity in general are given high priority followed by pharmacologic treatment guided by the novel assessment scheme. Comorbidities are often present in COPD and the GOLD 2011 revision gives some guidance in how to manage these as well as how to manage COPD in the presence of comorbidities.CONCLUSION: A more clinically oriented
GOLD document will hopefully improve assessment and management of COPD.

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Coverage of Jade Goody’s cervical cancer in UK newspapers: a missed opportunity for health promotion?

Hilton, S. et al. BMC Public Health, 2010; 10(368)

It has been claimed that publicity surrounding popular celebrity Jade
Goody’s experience of cervical cancer will raise awareness about the disease. This study examines the content of newspaper articles covering her illness to consider whether ‘mobilising information’ which could encourage women to adopt risk-reducing and health promoting behaviours has been included.METHODS: Content analysis of 15 national newspapers published between August 2008 and April 2009FINDINGS: In the extensive
coverage of Goody’s illness (527 articles in the 7 months of study) few newspaper articles included information that might make women more aware of the signs and symptoms or risk factors for the disease, or discussed the role of the human papilloma virus (HPV) and the recently introduced HPV vaccination programme to reduce the future incidence of cervical cancer. For example, less than 5% of articles mentioned well-known risk-factors
for cervical cancer and less than 8% gave any information about HPV. The ‘human interest’ aspects of Goody’s illness (her treatment, the spread of her disease in later months, her wedding, and her preparations for her children’s future) were more extensively covered.CONCLUSIONS: Newspaper coverage of Goody’s illness has tended not to include factual or educational information that could mobilise or inform women, or help them to recognise early symptoms. However, the focus on personal tragedy may encourage women to be receptive to HPV vaccination or screening if her story acts as a
reminder that cervical cancer can be a devastating and fatal disease in the longer term.

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District action on public health: how district councils contribute towards the new health and wellbeing agenda in local government

By District Councils’ Network (2013)

This report explores the district contribution to the new public health system in England. It demonstrates the sector’s impact across the wider determinants of health improvement and health protection, and provides essential information for public health stakeholders including best practice case studies of service delivery and public health collaboration in two-tier areas.

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Public Health England’s organisational structure

By Public Health England (2013)

PHE has finalised its organisational structure in advance of taking on its full range of responsibilities on the 1st April 2013.  Appointments to the PHE national executive have also now been completed.

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Local tobacco control profiles for England

By Public Health England (February 2013)

These profiles provides a snapshot of the extent of tobacco use, tobacco related harm, and measures being taken to reduce this harm at a local level. They are designed to help local government and health services to assess the effect of tobacco use on their local populations. They aim to inform commissioning and planning decisions to tackle tobacco use and improve the health of local communities.

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Working with schizophrenia: pathways to employment, recovery and inclusion

By The Work Foundation (February 2013)

This report examines the impact of schizophrenia on an individual’s ability to enter or remain in the labour market, outlining how such barriers can be addressed by policymakers, employers, and healthcare professionals as well as those with the condition and their carers. 

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Making it better? Assuring high-quality care in the NHS

By NHS Confederation (February 2013)

This paper aims to start a debate, leading to concrete proposals on how to tackle issues around standards of patient care as raised in the Francis report. It seeks to find ways of reinforcing both organisational and individual accountability for delivering and improving the quality of NHS patient care.

Click here to view this briefing paper