Friday Five

Concerns about NHS decision making, sleep struggles and progress for a vaccine – this week’s Friday Five

More than half the UK population struggling with sleep during lockdown

A study carried out by Ipsos MORI and King’s College London involving 2,254 UK residents between the ages of 16 and 75, has shown that more than half of the population struggled with sleep during the lockdown.

As one might expected, sleep problems were more common in people facing financial hardship, while two in five reported having more vivid dreams than usual.

The research has prompted suggestions that knock on effects of the lack of sleep on peoples capacity to be resilient during the pandemic.

Read the full story in the BBC News.

Ibuprofen could now be used as a treatment for Covid-19

A team of scientists at London’s Guy’s and St Thomas’ hospital and King’s College are running a trial to see if ibuprofen could be used as a low-cost treatment for patients with Covid-19 and reduce the need for patient ventilation.

Recent studies in animals have suggested that the anti-inflammatory properties of ibuprofen might treat acute respiratory distress syndrome – one of the complications of severe coronavirus.

This may come as a surprise for some following earlier concerns early that ibuprofen could exacerbate symptoms – a theory that was quickly disproven in a review by the Commission on Human Medicines.

Read the full story in the BBC News.

 

Trust leaders urge ‘rapid return’ to local decision making

As NHS England prepares to set out the next steps on managing the  Covid-19 response, Trust leaders are calling to regain control over decisions.

Chris Hopson, Chief Executive of NHS providers, has said there is a nervousness among local leaders about how the current ‘level 4’ national incident status means that some decisions that are normally made at a local level are now being made nationally.

The move to ‘level four’ was taken on 30 January to allow the government to provide whatever resources the NHS would need to cope with coronavirus. However, there are now concerns that the current system “encourages people to splurge money on Covid” which won’t be sustainable long-term.

Read the full story in the HSJ.

Coronavirus vaccine on track for delivery by the end of the year

Speaking on yesterday’s BBC World at one, Professor Sir John Bell, said that research for the coronavirus vaccine has accelerated and could be available as early as the end of the year.

Now, the University of Oxford trial is expanding recruitment for volunteers across the country to assess how well people across a range of ages could be protected from Covid-19 by the new vaccine.

Professor Bell told the BBC: “It looks pretty safe. We’re optimistic everything’s on schedule.”


Quote of the week

Following the announcement that online GP provider Livi will be partnering with NHS 111, Juliet Bauer, Livi’s UK managing director said:

“It’s easy to imagine healthcare could be better. It’s easy to imagine that you really could have a lot of your healthcare needs solved in your pocket, but then you need the integrated experience.” 

Read the full story in the HSJ.