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The University of Birmingham and Queen Elizabeth Hospital Birmingham, with support from the RCP HIU, are developing national data standards for recording alcohol and tobacco use in electronic patient records. Recording alcohol and tobacco use in health records is essential for identifying patients at high risk of future harm and for providing effective interventions.
The views of patients, carers, healthcare professionals, researchers, and clinical information system suppliers are currently being sought through two online surveys (one on alcohol and one on smoking) to inform the development of the proposed data standards to ensure that they are appropriate, acceptable, and implementable across the NHS.
Your views are important:
• To complete the alcohol survey please click > here
• To complete the tobacco survey please click > here
Closing date: 5pm, 17 February 2017
On Friday 20th January, Ian Murray MP, the Member of Parliament for Edinburgh South, visited Edinburgh Royal Infirmary’s Gastroenterology Ward to discuss the effects of excessive alcohol consumption as part of the Alcohol Health Alliance’s (AHA) ‘Day of Action’.
This national initiative, instigated with the British Association for the Study of the Liver, sees the AHA working with doctors to raise awareness of alcohol-related liver disease.
The local MP met with Consultant Gastroenterologist Dr Alastair MacGilchrist to discuss his work and the impact that alcohol-related disease has on the lives of many of his constituents, and they met a number of Dr MacGilchrist’s patients to see first-hand the effect of cheap alcohol consumption on individuals.
Speaking at the visit, Ian Murray MP said:
“From my conversations with Dr MacGilchrist today it is clear that excessive alcohol consumption is having a devastating impact on the lives of too many people in my constituency and across Scotland. The ready availability of cheap alcohol is a huge part of this, and tackling the low cost of alcohol, as well as discouraging excessive consumption, should both be priorities for the Government. I welcome the work of the Alcohol Health Alliance on this, and I hope that their Day of Action is successful in raising awareness in communities across the country”.
This webinar is for anyone who wants to understand the challenges to reduce liver disease.
By joining the webinar participants will:
Explore the variations in liver disease risk factors and outcomes
Learn about PHEs programmes of action on liver disease
Look at time series data to identify where variation has improved, stayed the same or got worse
Explore the stories behind the data
Have an opportunity to ask a question to the national team
The webinar* will be held on Thursday 26 January 2016 - 2:00pm and 3:00pm.
Registration is FREE for this event and if you have already expressed an interest in attending this webinar, then we will have your details on our system. If you have not registered, please do so > Here:
If you have any questions about registration, please contact Kerry.email@example.com .
*Webinar details will be sent out prior to the session
The Gilead UK and Ireland Fellowship Programme 2017 will open soon for grant applications in the therapy area of viral hepatitis. The aim of the programme is to support local innovation and best practice in patient care.
The programme invites applications from healthcare or allied professionals that:
1. Innovative local integrated initiatives to evaluate effectiveness of non-hospital based HCV treatment service models
2. Novel HCV care pathways using partnership models demonstrating measurable improvements in patient engagement
Projects which fall outside of this scope but which will add clinical value or which investigate an area of unmet need within viral hepatitis can also be submitted and will be reviewed for their merit.
The Gilead UK and Ireland Fellowship Programme started in 2009, and since its inception has supported over 150 projects in the areas of HIV, Viral Hepatitis, Respiratory, Invasive Fungal Disease and Oncology.
You can apply for a viral hepatitis grant by clicking > here .
Due to the current post holder having being elected as Chair of the British Viral Hepatitis Group (BVHG) the BVHG are seeking nominations / expressions of interest for the post of Secretary.
The British Viral Hepatitis Group aims to improve the management and study of patients with chronic viral liver disease, bringing together UK hepatologists, gastroenterologists, infectious disease physicians, virologists and interested epidemiologists.
BVHG Committee Secretary
The BVHG Secretary is elected by the BASL / BVHG membership to serve for a period of up to three year’s and may be re-elected once. The Secretary is responsible for running the administrative tasks pertaining to his/her function and will work closely with the BASL Secretariat, which is appointed by the BASL Governing Board.
The BVHG is commissioned by the BASL Governing Board to:
• a) promote research and the exchange of scientific information concerning viral hepatitis;
• b) foster multicentre scientific studies pertaining to viral hepatitis within the UK;
• c) promote education of physicians, surgeons, clinical nurse specialists and scientists with regard to viral hepatitides and their management;
• d) Promote interaction between clinical disciplines to promote good care of patients and foster research and clinical trials.
Candidates wishing to be considered for election will require one BASL member to propose them and a second BASL member to confirm their suitability for the role in writing.
Please email Judy Hawksworth at the BASL Secretariat Judith@execbs.com with your nominations by 17:00 on Friday 6th January 2017. Following this time candidate statements will be requested and voting will take place if necessary.
If you require any further information about this role please contact Dr Ahmed Elsharkawy at Ahmed.ElSharkawy@uhb.nhs.uk or contact Judy Hawksworth as above.
Responding to the release on 14 December 2016 of the 2015 Health Survey for England, Professor Sir Ian Gilmore, chair of the Alcohol Health Alliance UK, said:
"We welcome the continuing downward trend in children aged 8-15 being exposed to alcohol.
However, the figures for adults are worrying as they reveal that in 2015, 31% of men and 16% of women in England drank more than the current low risk weekly guideline of 14 units a week spread out across 4-5 days.
Drinking above the low risk guideline places people at increased risk of illnesses like heart disease, liver disease and cancer.
The most recent UK guidelines on low-risk drinking, and the reasons behind them, have simply not been communicated adequately. The government needs to ensure the public are aware of the current drinking guidelines, as well as the harms associated with alcohol. The public have the right to know, so they can make informed choices about their drinking.
The government should communicate the risks in two ways.
Firstly, the government should develop mass media campaigns outlining the risks. These could include TV and radio advertisements, social media campaigns, and messages on public transport.
Second, the government should introduce mandatory labelling of all alcoholic products, containing clear and legible health information about the harms associated with drinking."
HCV Action has produced a new resource, aimed at helping commissioners and service providers better understand hepatitis C treatment pathways.
The Hepatitis C Commissioning Toolkit, an update to the original toolkit published in September 2013, sets out key commissioning responsibilities, with the intention of bringing clarity to an often highly fragmented commissioning landscape.
In a foreword to the toolkit, Dr Steve Ryder, chairman of HCV Action and Consultant Hepatologist at, Nottingham University Hospitals NHS Trust, said: “With new treatments becoming available that can cure upwards of 95% of people, we now have the opportunity to eliminate this preventable and curable virus. “Commissioners have a major role to play. It is no exaggeration to say that commissioners, whether based in local authorities, CCGs or NHS England, will decide whether nor not we capitalise on the opportunity we now have to tackle this costly virus and ultimately eliminate it.”
To find out more > click here.
On 6th December the APPG on Alcohol Harm has launched its report on the Impact of alcohol on the emergency services.
The Frontline Battle report Download Alcohol Health Alliance The Frontline Battle.pdf reveals the full extent of the pressures and dangers alcohol related problems place on our emergency services and the impact this has on the staff who serve on the frontline.
As part of the Inquiry, the group of parliamentarians took evidence from police officers, fire crew and paramedics, and also collected written evidence.
A press release can be found below:
Abused, attacked and over stretched - Parliamentary report lays bare the impact of alcohol on our emergency services
At an event in Parliament on Tuesday 6th December a report from the All Party Parliamentary Group on Alcohol Harm revealed the full extent of the pressures and dangers alcohol related problems place on our front line emergency services.
The group of parliamentarians took evidence from police officers, fire crew and paramedics, and also collected written evidence, including extensive surveys of emergency service staff across England. Findings in the report include:
• Over 50% of police officers report that alcohol related incidents make up the majority of their workload.
• Surveys find that over 80% of police officers had been assaulted by people who had been drinking, and of those more than 20% had been assaulted six or more times.
• 59% of female police officers and 33% of male officers report sexual assault or harassment while on duty.
Ambulance and A&E departments:
• Over 70% of all attendances at A&E departments are alcohol related at weekends.
• Drunken patients regularly cause significant problems for clinical staff and other patients, with clinicians reporting that they face aggression, violence and being personally assaulted by drunken patients.
• On average alcohol related fires cost almost five times as much as other fires, and are more likely to involve fatalities.
• Fire and rescue services now rescue more people from road traffic collisions than from house fires, with drink driving a continuing problem.
The group of Parliamentarians were also told that alcohol puts a significant and damaging strain on our emergency services, and that many of these incidents were avoidable if the right action was taken.
See the report introduction for quotes from emergency service personnel – Download Alcohol Health Alliance The Frontline Battle.pdf
Fiona Bruce MP, Chair of the All Party Parliamentary Group on Alcohol Harm, said: “It should be wholly unacceptable to hear of an A&E consultant being kicked in the face, medical staff having TV’s thrown at them, or female police officers being sexually assaulted. And it’s not just emergency staff who suffer; as this report describes many other people are impacted too, from taxpayers who foot the bill, to patients who can’t be seen promptly, or worse, those innocent people killed in avoidable drunk driving accidents.”
“Urgent action, as described in this report, is needed from Government at the highest level in order to address this.”
Steve Irving, Executive Officer of the Association of Ambulance Chief Executives, said: “The ambulance service attends too many patients suffering from alcohol-related injuries or illnesses, many of which would not occur without the consumption of excess alcohol. This takes valuable resources away from patients who may be seriously ill so it is clear that more widespread safe drinking, in moderation, would significantly relieve the pressure on ambulance services and the wider health economy, especially emergency departments of local hospitals.”
“ The ambulance service also attends many alcohol-related road traffic collisions each year, some of which result in death and serious injury to members of the public. This is why AACE is actually in favour of ultimately lowering the drink driving limit to zero.”
Amongst others, the report recommendations include:
• A Government-led, cross-departmental National Strategy, to engage all of the appropriate Government Departments on a strategic level.
• Lowering the drink drive limit in England and Wales from 80mg alcohol/100ml blood to 50mg/100ml. This would reduce drink driving fatalities by at least 10%, and is supported by many motoring and roads safety charities, as well as 77% of the British public.
• Reducing the affordability of cheap and high-strength alcohol, by introducing a minimum unit price (MUP) for alcohol, and reinstating the alcohol duty escalator in order to ensure the tax system both addresses alcohol harm, and incentivises the development and sale of lower strength products.
Alcohol Concern provides the secretariat for the All Party Parliamentary Group on Alcohol Harm and welcomes the recommendations made by the report.
Joanna Simons, Chief Executive of Alcohol Concern, said: “The costs of alcohol harm to the UK are huge, not only in terms on lives lost but also through the significant impact on society and our emergency services. Alcohol costs us all, even when we’re not buying alcohol ourselves.”
“What this report highlights is the enormous pressure our emergency service staff face every day. We need the UK Government to act and take steps to implement the report’s recommendations, including lowering the drink drive limit and tackling cheap and high-strength alcohol, which we know will work in reducing alcohol-related harms and ease the strain on frontline staff.”
The report provides a full list of recommendations – Download Alcohol Health Alliance The Frontline Battle.pdf
For more information, please contact: Office of Fiona Bruce MP: firstname.lastname@example.org / Tel: 0207 219 2969
(1) Institute of Alcohol Studies. Drink driving factsheet
(2) Allsop R, (2015)., ‘Saving Lives by Lowering the Legal Drink-Drive Limit’. PACTS
In October the Hepatitis C Coalition, Public Health England and Local Government Association held a workshop on ‘Testing Times: Maintaining and Improving Public Health Testing Services.’
To view a report of the event click > here.