Health E-news Friday 9 October

Health E-News is a weekly update on policy and guidelines from organisations including NICE and individual Royal Medical Colleges, and news and views on health related subjects and research from trusted sources such as The King’s Fund, Cochrane, The Health Foundation, the NHS and the Department of Health and Social Care.

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COVID-19 guidance and policy

Announcement of forthcoming guideline on persistent effects of COVID-19

NICE, and the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN) have announced that they will work with the Royal College of General Practitioners (RCGP) to develop a guideline for the persistent effects of COVID-19, or long covid. The guideline will address, among other things, a formal definition of the disease, and how to identify on-going symptoms, which can include on-going shortness of breath, fatigue, heart, lung, kidney, neurological and musculoskeletal problems. It will also provide a definition of best practice investigation and treatment options to support the management of the condition. Publication is expected before the end of the year.

COVID-19 related news

Cochrane review on anticoagulants for people hospitalised with COVID-19

A recently published Cochrane review explores the use of prophylactic anticoagulants for those who are hospitalised with COVID-19, to see whether preventive use of anticoagulants reduced mortality or the need for respiratory support, compared with placebo or no anticoagulant treatment. The studies found for inclusion in the review were retrospective studies from hospitals in China, Italy, Spain and the USA, and the variance in reporting of results, along with incomplete reporting, means the review authors have low confidence in the current evidence. 22 ongoing studies on the topic, including 20 RCTs, were identified, and the review will be updated when results of these are published.

Other news

Cochrane brings together recent reviews relevant to nursing, midwifery and allied health

On the Evidently Cochrane blog this week, collections of recent Cochrane reviews have been brought together for several staff groups. The individual collections offer an overview of recent evidence relating to nursing, reviews relevant for allied health professionals, and for midwives. Each collection offers several different topics, provides a summary of the findings, and links to the full reviews.

Cancer Research UK publication on the early detection and diagnosis of cancer

Cancer Research UK have published the ‘Early Detection and Diagnosis of Cancer Roadmap’, a report which aims to help bring together the UK efforts in early detection and diagnosis of cancer. The document aims to define a shared vision amongst healthcare professionals, healthcare service commissioners, academia, research funders, patients and other stakeholder sectors, and makes recommendations for overcoming the existing challenges to progress in this area.

NHS Employers resources for World Mental Health Day

Ahead of World Mental Health Day on Saturday 10 October, NHS Employers have rounded up a range of resources relevant to mental health and wellbeing amongst the healthcare workforce. The resources include a toolkit developed in partnership with Mind, and a variety of resources relating to mental wellbeing throughout the ongoing pandemic, including some specific advice on mental health for those working from home.

International consensus statement on preventing opioid-related harm

An international multi-disciplinary consensus statement on the prevention of opioid-related harm in surgical patients has been published in Anaesthesia. The authors of the statement include anaesthetists, pain specialists, surgeons, a primary care physician, nurse and pharmacist from Australia, India, Italy, the Netherlands, the UK and the USA, selected on the basis of clinical or academic expertise. The statement offers guidance on the safe peri-operative use of opioids in adult surgical patients, and includes recommended strategies to reduce the potential harms of postoperative use of opioids.

Nuffield Trust report considers mental health nurse education

A report from the Nuffield Trust, commissioned by NHS Employers and the Mental Health Network, looks at ways more people might be attracted to apply to study mental health nursing, and considers the reasons why numbers are currently limited. ‘Laying foundations: Attitudes and access to mental health nurse education’, identifies five broad areas where efforts can be made to encourage and support an increased number of students in mental health nursing education. These include improving understanding of mental health nursing roles and mental health patients, and enabling access to courses across the country, from across the breadth of the population.

NICE guidance

Medtech innovation briefing

MIB229 AnaConDa-S for sedation with volatile anaesthetics in intensive care

NICE guideline

NG170 COVID-19 rapid guideline: cystic fibrosis Updated

NG183 Behaviour change: digital and mobile health interventions

Technology appraisal

TA652 Alpelisib with fulvestrant for treating hormone-receptor positive, HER2-negative, PIK3CA-positive advanced breast cancer (terminated appraisal)

NIHR alerts 

Working may improve quality of life for carers of people with dementia

A decision aid may help people with newly-diagnosed multiple sclerosis consider their options for treatment

People with anorectal melanoma may not benefit from radical surgery


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