Experts call for new focus on physical activity

November 7, 2014

Source: BBC News Health

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Date of publication: October 2014

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: The effects of inactivity are linked to heart disease, cancer and diabetes. Many people are failing to meet the recommended level of 150 minutes of moderate activity per week. This report focuses on a community-based competition called ‘Beat the Street’ to challenge inactivity. It is based mainly in primary schools but also encourages participation from GP surgeries, local clubs and businesses. The GP who devised this scheme says that 10% more people meet the recommended level of activity after Beat the Street, and 22% of people who were physically inactive before the scheme have become more active.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.


Chest pain symptom scoring can improve the quality of referrals

November 4, 2014

Source: BMJ Quality Improvement Reports

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Date of publication: October 2014

Publication type: Case study

In a nutshell: GPs need to identify patients who are presenting with either possible or typical angina problems and refer them for specialist assessment to a Rapid Access Chest Pain Clinic (RACPC). However, there is a possibility that GPs may be cautiously over-diagnosing angina. This study incorporated chest pain symptom scoring in to the referral form, which resulted in improved GP discrimination of chest pain and fewer avoidable referrals.

Length of publication: 5 pages

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement: Barking and Havering NHS Trust


Laying money on the line leads to healthier food choices over time

January 9, 2014

Source: The Association for Psychological Science

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Date of publication: 6th January 2014

Publication type: Press Release

In a nutshell: A study in South Africa involving over 6,500 families has found that the participants were more likely to choose healthy options in the supermarket if they risked losing their monthly healthy food discount. Some of the households enrolled in the programme volunteered to commit to a target of increasing their healthy food purchases by 5% over six months, using the possible loss of their monthly discount as a motivational tool. Other households chose not to risk their cash-back discount. At the end of the study, only the families who had risked their credit card cash-back increased their healthy food purchases.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement: The abstract of the original research can be found in the journal Psychological Science.


‘Physical literacy’ programme for Scottish schools

August 9, 2013

Source: The Scotsman

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Date of publication: 21st July 2013

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: Every local authority in Scotland is planning to introduce the ‘Better Movers and Thinkers’ initiative in schools next term. This ‘physical literacy’ programme is based on a training model used by Olympic athletes and football players. It has been used in Canadian and Australian schools, and a pilot scheme in North Lanarkshire recorded improvements in behaviour and attendance and had a positive effect on girls in particular.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.


Superheart to the rescue

October 10, 2012

Source: The Lancet, 2012, 380 (9848), p. 1122

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Date of publication: September 2012

Publication type: Editorial

In a nutshell: 29th September 2012 was World Heart Day, and the focus this year was on prevention of heart disease in women and children. As part of World Heart Day, the cartoon character ‘Superheart’ was created to appeal to children aged between 7 and 10. This superhero plays football rather than computer games and chases away fast food and fizzy drinks. A report called ‘F as in Fat: how obesity threatens America’s future’ predicts that the number of new cases of coronary heart disease and stroke could increase ten times by 2020 and then double again by 2030. Preventive interventions to change behaviour in children and adolescents are therefore important for improving heart health.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement: World Health Federation


Telehealth trial shows early success

January 13, 2012

Source: Department of Health

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Date of publication: December 2011

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: The Whole System Demonstrator (WSD) programme was established in 2008 to evaluate the clinical and cost effectiveness of telehealth, and focused on heart disease, COPD and diabetes. It was the largest randomised controlled trial of telehealth in the world, covering three sites in the UK and 238 GP practices. This news item contains a link to the headline findings of the WSD programme, which were published on 5th December 2011 and show that telehealth can help to plan care for people with long-term conditions.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.


Development of a tool to improve the quality of decision making in atrial fibrillation

November 10, 2011

Source: BMC Medical Informatics and Decision Making, 2011, 11 (59)

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Date of publication: October 2011

Publication type: Clinical innovations

In a nutshell: A decision support tool in primary care to be used for patients with non-valvular atrial fibrillation. The tool helps in the consideration of various treatment options, and presents individualised risk estimates for stroke and bleeding.

Length of publication: 10 pages

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.


A review of telehealth in Scotland

November 10, 2011

Source: The King’s Fund Information & Library Service

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Date of publication: October 2011

Publication type: Report

In a nutshell: Telehealth has the potential to provide NHS services more efficiently. This report looks at how the NHS in Scotland is using various technologies such as mobile phones, video-conferencing and self-monitoring equipment. The report gives some examples of cardiology services which have used video-conferencing.

Length of publication: 34 pages

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.


The “Million Hearts” Initiative – preventing heart attacks and strokes

October 12, 2011

Source: New England Journal of Medicine, 2011, 365 (13) p. e27

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Date of publication: September 2011

Publication type: Journal article

In a nutshell: The Million Hearts Initiative has been launched by US government agencies working with a broad range of private sector partners. Their aim is to prevent one million heart attacks and strokes over the next five years. They plan to do this by implementing effective and inexpensive clinical and community innovations and initiatives. Interventions will involve areas such as aspirin use, cholesterol management, improving nutrition and reducing smoking.

Length of publication: 4 pages

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.


NHS Bristol uses phones for telehealth

September 11, 2011

Source: Ehealth Insider

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Date of publication: July 2011

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: NHS Bristol is delivering a new telehealth service to patients with long-term conditions. 600 patients will be given smartphones loaded with a health application. The data produced will be encrypted and sent to community staff, helping them to decide whether a face-to-face consultation is necessary. It is hoped that the use of new technology will improve the quality of patient care and reduce the cost burden on the health system.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.

Acknowledgement: NHS Bristol


£10 million boost for Scottish telehealth

April 11, 2011

Source: E-Health Insider

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Date of publication: March 2011

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: The Scottish government has announced that it is to invest more than £10 million in a new pilot involving 10,000 older people, including those with long-term conditions, and the use of healthcare technology.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.


iPhone app ‘detects arrhythmia’

September 14, 2010

Source: Healthcare Republic

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Date of publication: August 2010

Publication type: News item

In a nutshell: The charity Arrhythmia Alliance, has launched an iPhone application called ‘Know Your Pulse’, which aims to detect signs of cardiac arrhythmia and therefore improve diagnosis. Users record their own pulse reading over 30 seconds and are then advised on whether they are suffering from an irregular or unusually fast or slow heartbeat. The Arrhythmia Alliance campaign aims to raise awareness of arrhythmia, and also remind healthcare professionals of the importance of conducting regular pulse checks during routine patient check-ups.

Length of publication: 1 webpage

Some important notes: Please contact your local NHS library if you cannot access the full text. Follow this link to find your local NHS library.