Does Cannabis use affect driving? - Is it Dangerous? ...more
Last week, the courts prevented a long-planned social enterprise from being created in Gloucestershire. The protaganist here wasn't Unison or the BMA but a 68 year old bloke who believed that such services ought to be kept in the NHS - and open to NHS providers to compete for.
Ahead of a verdict, the social enterprise has been pulled. Game over.
The net result of this will, of course, be a procurement exercise, the outcome of which might be well be not an NHS provider but a private sector one. This gentleman may rue the day he successfully stopped a social enterprise in its tracks.
So what does this mean for social enterprise and mutuals in public services?
It definitely brings EU competition law clearly into the frame when NHS bodies and Councils are looking at spin-outs. Competition law states fairly clearly that where there is a market for services - even when these are social or healthcare services - there should be open competition. ...more
Today's Times carries an article from me making a plea for politicians to realise the real challenges on health and social care, and make use of the imagination and innovation of our sector. Members who were at our AGM will have to forgive me for using the Catherine the Great quote!
When facing great political turmoil, Catherine the Great once said, "a great wind is blowing and that gives you either a headache or imagination". The current debate on the Health Bill has certainly given the Government a headache. But is our political class responding to the challenges facing our health and social care system with sufficient imagination?
When I was writing the report for the Government on choice and competition as part of the Health Bill's listening exercise, I was struck by the fact that there is a great deal more consensus on the challenges facing health and social care provision in this country than the furore over the Health Bill would ...more
Ashoka Changemakers will host its first World Day #SocEntSummit on Twitter, this International Women’s Day from 1 - 5 p.m. IST / 3:30 – 7:30 a.m. EST. Titled #ChangemakeHERS, this event celebrates womanhood with some of the most outstanding women social entrepreneurs from all over Asia. Save the date and spread the word!
Such is the level of debate on health reform that we seem not to be able to have a sensible exchange of views . It's all become playground shouting. You are either " in favour" of the Bill or you are "against" it, ( with the grave assumption that if you support the bill you probably also like spitting at your granny). So I'm caricatured in the Guardian, followed by a somewhat surprising tweet from Polly Toynbee as "supporting the Bill". Actually ACEVO does not have a position on the Bill as a whole; either supporting it or demanding it is killed. Members have very differing views on the multitude of different provisions within it.
But what is certain is that many ACEVO members look at the services provided by the NHS to their beneficiares (the mentally ill; the elderly; those dying in hospital beds) and think they could do better by those people. So I have strong views on choice , patients rights and the need for radical reform. And I use every opportunity I get to ...more
Editor's note: This post was written by Chloe Feinberg, knowledge consultant at Ashoka Changemakers®.
The idea of maintaining health is gaining ever more prominence and importance. Health maintenance is in some ways similar to health prevention, but is also quite different.
Preventive health is used to describe the many ways and opportunities to prevent the worsening of health or the development of disease. But what if a person is already sick? What about the individuals living with asthma, or who have high blood pressure?
“UnConference Room” Your Meeting with a Peaceful Banyan Tree
There are many images that come to mind when we think of Asia, from dragons to beautiful beaches, spanning varied cultures. One of my favorite views is that of the banyan tree, for it must be strongly grounded in the earth, which also allows its larger branches and leaves to provide overreaching shade.
It was under a banyan tree where the Buddha felt his calling to a new level of enlightenment. Under these same trees, Gujarati businessmen hold their meetings. It is even used as a place for political meetings: Recently in Malaysia, the state assembly met underneath the welcome atmosphere of the banyan tree. So for much of Asia, spirituality, entrepreneurship, politics are taking place right outdoors.
The banyan tree represents solidity, rootedness, and strength. At the same time, it also represents comfort, shade and welcome. It is a source of power, balanced with peace. It ...more