Discussion Forums » Topic of the Month

Topic for April - The NHS

    • 94 posts
    March 19, 2018 2:10 PM GMT

    A big and important one to tackle in our April Pie and Pint meetings.

    What ideas do you have for improving the NHS or what topics do you think we should add to our agenda?

    • 21 posts
    May 9, 2018 10:52 AM BST

    This is a possible agenda which you may find a useful input to your own discussions.


    How do we compare with other countries?

    What are the current issues with the NHS?

    Service and Quality levels

    Staffing & Admin



    Bed blocking

    Access to GPs, GPs and Dietary advice, Preventative Medicine

    Medical advances, New treatments and associated costs – annual capability increases beyond inflation

    Vested interests – drug companies, unions/professional organisations


    Political football


    Do the media have a good or bad role in relation to the NHS?

    How are demands going to change?


    Population Growth – permanent and transitory (working and visiting)

    Integration of NHS and Social Care (especially elderly)

    What is good about the NHS?

    What is our long-term vision for the NHS and associated long-term strategy for the next 25 years?

    Our manifesto items

    Preventative Health & Fitness

    Technology and the NHS

    Service Levels



    Social Care

    Given that strategy what needs to happen in the short-term?


    Below are some relevant extracts from the current draft 21st century manifesto which you may like to take into account. 


    1. Creating A 21st Century NHS

    The effectiveness of the NHS and its cost is a huge on-going issue.  Increasing longevity, increasing ability to prolong life, and new innovative and costly treatments, all currently add further to the cost problem, at a rate well beyond normal inflation. The following are proposed:

    Visible long-term strategy so short-term decisions can be in context

    A Parallel Preventative Medicine NHS. Supported by personal monitoring technology. Initially paid for service but with schoolchildren free and associated free online service.

    Prioritisation and Deployment of Transformative Science and Technology. Rapid advancement and incentives for science and technology developments. Including Assistive Technology for Nurses and Doctors e.g. first step automated triage diagnosis. Cross-over with Elderly Social Care technologies mentioned above. Including Body to drive this across Hospitals, GPs and Care sector.

    Enablers of leaving hospital early to avoid bed blocking.  Including co-location of Hospitals and Nursing Homes built with automated building technologies with standardised purpose-designed modules. 

    National Insurance re-set and ring-fenced so that it is what was intended i.e. insurance against major set-backs in life: health problems, care costs, job loss, plus provision for old age i.e. retirement. Ability to pay extra for extra benefits.

    Cost Reduction Initiatives. The above all also contribute to cost reduction. Further possibilities are:

    • Prioritised Research and Treatment on 10 biggest cost areas to cut costs/help prevention through alternatives and technology. Prioritise what treatments to offer that can cure or prevent far worse

    • Foundations policy to encourage focus on Health and Social Care arena.

    • Limit scope of what is paid for by NHS. As part of rights and responsibilities a more specific demarcation of what state is responsible for around the average life and what individuals. have to choose. So that target is that everyone who works 40 hours a week can have a good life with enough to put money where the priorities are. Highly expensive individualised treatments only available privately until costs come down.

    • Any non-UK citizen must have health insurance to enter country/get on plane

    • Taxing the bad g. sugar tax

    • ‘Enterprise Arm’ for selling capability and services


    1. Making the Elderly Social Care System Functional

    As with most other policy areas in this manifesto, technology can play an enormous part in both the short and long term, so driving it forward is crucial and the Foundation Policy (described below) is particularly applicable. There are several strands of strategy required all with the aim of improving quality while reducing costs:

    • Preventative health and fitness initiatives. Reducing the need for care in the first place through preventative health and fitness initiatives to enable more healthy years (which are also relevant to the general NHS strategy).

    • Applying technology and robotics within Residential Care Homes and Nursing homes
      • Use of robotics and remote monitoring technology in Care Homes to take as much mundane work as possible from staff e.g. toileting, washing, getting out of bed, dressing, other routine tasks, so staff numbers can be reduced and they can focus on interaction.
      • Reduce cost of care home infrastructure by Automated construction of modular Care Homes off site with standardised layout and equipment to simplify robotics and maintenance and periodic replacement. Technology designed in – plug in modules etc.

    • Nursing Care integration with NHS care
      • All Residential Care technology and automated building modules applicable but extended to nursing assistant roles

    • Encouraging construction and marketing of Sheltered Accommodation and Retirement Villages with all above technology options, adding to their attraction as a means of ensuring independence

    • Extending ability to remain in one’s home. Extending the ability to stay in one’s home for much longer through use of technology e.g.
      • voice control of all home appliances from anywhere in the home
      • extended use of existing remote monitoring capability (falls, floods, gas etc)
      • personalised and remote health monitoring to give confidence and ensure action taken earlier if necessary
      • priority given to drugs and research that can prevent or delay problems or make problems manageable e.g. dementia delaying drugs
      • personal robotics to provide assistance e.g. bathing, toileting (extension of Care Home robotics see below)

    • Insurance based funding of Elderly Social Care. The need for Care is largely outside our control and is therefore a classic situation where an insurance based approach benefits everyone.

    Priority area for Foundations. Social Care to be one of priority areas for ‘Foundations’ strategy (see above)

    • 94 posts
    May 9, 2018 11:26 AM BST

    The Output of the Deep Thought Group Pie and Pint discussion this month detailing Issues and Ideas can be viewed at :


    If you want to view previous discussion outputs you can see them at: