Wells, N.

August 1981

Absence from work stems from a variety of sources including industrial action, lateness and ill-health. Of these the latter is by far the most significant cause of lost working time: in 1978/79 there were 371 million days of absence due to certified incapacity, contrasting sharply with the contemporaneous loss of just over 15 million days arising from industrial injuries or prescribed diseases and the 9.4 million working days absorbed by industrial stoppages in the calendar year 1978.

Taylor, D.

July 1981

Following a proposal originally made by the representative of the Libyan Arab Jamahiriya, the General Assembly of the United Nations decided late in 1976 that 1981 should be proclaimed the International Year of the Disabled Persons (IYDP). The UN’s intended aims for the year to include increasing global awareness of the abilities and the needs of disabled people; encouraging their fuller integration into their communities; improving preventative services; and stimulating ‘more positive’ attitudes generally.

December 1980

The annual number of NHS prescriptions dispensed by chemist and appliance contractors in the United Kingdom is falling after a seven year period of expansion. As Figure 1 shows, the overall total grew between 1972 and 1978 at an annual average rate of 3 per cent (approximately 9 million prescriptions). It peaked in 1978 at 378 million. This figure, which represented a net gain of 154 million prescriptions or 69 per cent over 1949, was the highest in NHS history.

Teeling Smith, G.

November 1980

The risks from untreated high blood pressure at even mildly elevated levels are well documented in quantitative terms. American insurance companies have since the interwar years required a blood pressure reading from their prospective clients, and figures derived from their analysis of mortality rates according to initial blood pressure, based on a single reading, are shown in Table 1 (Society of Actuaries 1959).

May 1981

In Europe, as in other developed countries, health expenditures have recently been rising proportionately faster than national wealth. Between 1960 and 1978 the percentage of gross national product spent on health care in the European Community rose from about 4.1 per cent to 7.3 per cent.

Laing, W.

April 1980

The United Kingdom’s performance in the treatment of End Stage Renal Failure reflects, in microcosm, many of the strengths and weaknesses of the National Health Service. On the one hand, UK practice is almost certainly more cost-effective than that of any other country. It has been achieved in this instance by concentration on transplantation and on home rather than hospital dialysis. On the other hand, because of lack of resources, facilities for the most expensive modes of treatment are in considerably shorter supply than in comparable countries.

December 1979

This OHE Briefing illustrates some of the difficulties inherent in making accurate international and international comparisons with regard to perinatal mortality, the most sensitive widely collected measure of fetal and maternal wellbeing. It also discusses some of the phenomena which cause, or are closely associated with, danger to life and/or health before and shortly after birth.

September 1979

In the richer nations of Europe and North America the gaining of control over the common infectious illnesses was a long, gradual process. It was initiated by improvements in the diet available to the mass of the people, coupled with public health measures like the provision of clean water supplies and adequate sanitation. Subsequently the attack was driven home by advances in both curative and preventive medicine. Amongst the most significant of these were the development of effective and safe immunising techniques.

November 1978

On each day in 1976 in England and Wales approximately forty-one people died and thousands more were either severely or slightly injured as a result of accidents. Such occurrences generate substantial social and economic costs which are borne not only by accident victims themselves but also by their relatives and the community as a whole. A growing appreciation of the extent of these burdens and of the potential for preventing a significant proportion of accidental injuries and fatalities has in recent years drawn much public and professional attention to the problem.

October 1978

In 1978 the cost of the National Health Service in the United Kingdom will rise, to an estimated record level of £8,000 million. Even when adjusted for the falling value of the pound this means that the NHS costs three times as much as when it was first established. However, public spending in other sectors like education has risen to a similar degree and in the past decade the outlay in the NHS has remained constant at about 10 per cent of all public expenditure, less debt interest.


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