Public Services and the Welfare State

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    Why social science can help us to better understand organisational change in healthcare

Why social science can help us to better understand organisational change in healthcare

Lorelei Jones, Alec Fraser, and Ellen Stewart write that while the literature of large‐scale healthcare reform is dominated by competing forms of knowledge, social science in particular can offer new insights.

Major changes to the way clinical services are organised keep happening, despite a lack of evidence that it improves anything. Health services research often excludes important dimensions, such as politics […]

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    Pounds for Patients? The weak regulatory approach to financial incentives in UK healthcare

Pounds for Patients? The weak regulatory approach to financial incentives in UK healthcare

David Rowland writes that, although financial incentives have the potential to result in overtreatment and unnecessary interventions, the UK rules governing them are weak. He illustrates this point by comparing the regulatory approaches of the UK and the US.

The US healthcare system is plagued with fraud, with an estimated $272 billion lost to fraudulent practices each year. Much of […]

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    Corporate care home collapse and ‘light touch’ regulation: a repeating cycle of failure

Corporate care home collapse and ‘light touch’ regulation: a repeating cycle of failure

In light of the care home chain Four Seasons going into administration David Rowland looks at the failure of the regime designed to prevent such situations, as well as the cause of the collapse. He concludes that the rights of hedge funds and private equity investors to extract profit from the care home sector are given priority than the […]

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    How involved is the public in changes affecting the devolved NHS?

How involved is the public in changes affecting the devolved NHS?

Ellen Stewart, Angelo Ercia, Scott Greer, and Peter Donnelly compare how the public is involved in major service changes across the UK’s four health systems. They find some clear differences between the four systems’ processes, including the extent of central government oversight and guidance.

Of the issues that have dogged health politics since the creation of the NHS, the closure […]

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    Becoming ‘prevention ninjas’: Rethinking leadership and political will in preventive health

Becoming ‘prevention ninjas’: Rethinking leadership and political will in preventive health

John Boswell, Paul Cairney, and Emily St Denny examine agencies with responsibility for preventive health policy in Australia, New Zealand, and England. They find that building and maintaining legitimacy for such agencies may come at the expense of quick progress or radical action in service of the prevention agenda.

Most public health advocates bemoan the current balance of resources in […]

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    Double discrimination: the economic gap between disabled women and the rest of the population

Double discrimination: the economic gap between disabled women and the rest of the population

In the UK, gender policies tend to ignore the needs of disabled women, and disability policies tend to have a gender-blind approach, write Eun Jung Kim, Susan L. Parish, and Tina Skinner. They provide new evidence on the elevated marginalisation experienced by disabled women and call for policies with a more intersectional approach.

In 2018, approximately 14 million individuals, or […]

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    Transforming employment support for individuals with disabilities and health conditions

Transforming employment support for individuals with disabilities and health conditions

The UK’s recent Improving Lives Green Paper offers a window of opportunity for much-needed change in health-related unemployment. Its proposed reforms, however, are inadequate, writes Adam Whitworth. He highlights the central role of capacity, conditionality, and connectivity in bringing about genuine change.

Health-related unemployment and sickness absence are key challenges in the UK, as in many nations. At 32%, the […]

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    Are non-custodial sentences a credible and cost-effective substitute to incarceration?

Are non-custodial sentences a credible and cost-effective substitute to incarceration?

Nick Cowen, Siddhartha Bandyopadhyay, and Juste Abramovaite analyse the effects of custodial and non-custodial sentences on recorded crime in England and Wales. Their results suggest that non-custodial sentences can be an effective alternative to custody when it comes to reducing property crime but their effect is less consistent when looking at violent crime.

As the criminal justice system struggles with […]