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Conference Season

It's the conference season in health and social care- as providers, commissioners, people who use services, carers and others gather together in different venues across the country to learn from each other, pick up good ideas and hopefully be inspired to do something different back at base....

Care Home Open Day

The third Care Home Open Day took place on Friday 19 June – an annual opportunity to strengthen links between homes and the local community, celebrate good care and recognise the contribution of countless dedicated staff and managers across the country. From tea parties to sing-a-longs; barbecues...

Good guys sometimes get the gongs

Among the high profile celebrities on the Queen’s Birthday Honours List, there were some real gems for us to applaud. Whether you approve or not of the honours system, it still is the major game in town for a public opportunity to say thank you and well done to people who have given great service...

Wit and wisdom

Singer Peggy Seeger is 80 next week and is celebrating this milestone by touring with her sons to sell-out crowds across the country. I was there on Saturday at the Queen Elizabeth Hall and what a wonderful night it was. As feisty as ever, funny and insightful her beautiful voice and chatty...

Improvement top tips

On Friday I was speaking at a conference focusing on breaking down the barriers between health and social care to promote integration. Under the banner of #AllTogetherNow, the joint organisers Care England and the Royal College of Nursing had assembled an impressive array of speakers. The morning...

A night in Berlin

A strange thing happened to me at the weekend. I was in Berlin walking home with a group of friends after a lovely evening. A very drunk young man fell over as we passed by, got up and started hurling abuse at us- in pretty good English. Like the rest of the group I tried to avoid and ignore him...

Dementia and dying

Awareness weeks are like buses- you wait a while and then three come along at once! Last week was Mental Health Awareness Week and this week we have Dementia Awareness Week and Dying Matters Awareness Week. All really important topics for those of us interested in adult social care and the...

Mental health awareness

This week is Mental Health Awareness Week (#MHAW15). I know that some find the parade of special days, weeks and months a bit tiresome and wonder how much impact they have. I am firmly in the camp, though, that welcomes the opportunity to focus on a specific topic, raise the profile and share...

Social care vote

So after all the discussion and mayhem, we're finally here – the week of Election Day. I blogged recently about the importance of people using and working in social care services making sure they were registered to vote. What a fantastic response there was. One of the great things about social...

Inspection matters

Inspection as a way to support improvement in health and social care has been taking a bit of a battering. John Burton writing in the Guardian Social Care Network claimed “After 50 years in the sector, I know the CQC rarely improves social care.” It was also reported that the Danish government were...

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