Flow unveils chatbot therapist to combat depression

A chatbot therapist to treat depression has launched as recent figures show that NHS patients seeking help with their mental health are waiting more than eight weeks to see a doctor after their first appointment.1 The chatbot therapist was developed by medical device company Flow, which in June launched a brain stimulation headset treatment for depression, the first and only medically approved at-home treatment of its kind in the UK and EU.

The chatbot therapist, called Flow, engages users with daily chat conversations and offers self-help techniques, mood tracking, curated videos, meditation and mental exercises. It helps users to learn why sleep, exercise, nutrition and meditation are the main pillars in recovering from depression – and gathers mood data to offer a personalised response modelled on behavioural therapy.

“I feel like I have a buddy who’s just chatting with me, no judgement, and forcing me to pace myself.”

Flow user

Watch Flow in action

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yx828P33GjI&feature=youtu.be

Available to download free on iOS, the chatbot therapist is based on the latest psychology and neuroscience research, and was developed by clinical psychologists and machine learning experts. An Android version will be available in October 2019.

Nearly one in four adults in the UK are affected by a mental illness.2 Suicide is the most common cause of death for men aged 20-49 years in England and Wales.3 The economic costs of mental illness in England is estimated at £105.2 billion annually.4 And one in three work sickness notes handed out by GPs are for mental health reasons, including depression.5

“Accessibility and early intervention in depression is crucial,” says Daniel Mansson, Clinical Psychologist, CEO and Co-Founder of Flow. “The ‘always-on’ source of therapy provided by Flow ensures people get the help they need as quickly as possible. Flow can provide anonymity without the fear of being judged by others. This is great as some people feel anxious when it comes to talking about their depression to another human.”

To maximise the chance of recovery, Flow can be used in conjunction with the Flow brain stimulation headset. Randomised controlled trials published in the New England Journal of Medicine and the British Journal of Psychiatry show that brain stimulation, of the type used in the Flow headset, had a similar impact to antidepressants but with fewer and less-severe side effects.6,7,8 The Flow headset retails at £399 and can be purchased here.

Flow joins a growing number of mental health chatbots, including Woebot and Wysa, which are playing an increasing role in the mental health landscape. Whilst Woebot and Wysa use a cognitive behavioural approach to change the way people think, Flow has one goal: to reduce clinical depression based on well-grounded science.

Flow is starting talks with the NHS to have its brain stimulation headset available on prescription. The company recently announced an investment of £1.2 million by Khosla Ventures to roll out its offering across Europe, introduce the Flow headset to healthcare clinics in the UK, and fund clinical studies.

More than a quarter of people who die from liver disease in hospital have no previous admission in the year before their death

New data released today at the largest conference for liver clinicians reveals that around 5,200 people die from liver disease in hospital in England each year. Of these, 30% of those have not had an admission in the year before death. On admission to hospital time is of the essence in saving these seriously ill patients. 1 in 4 of those who die do not survive more than 3 days and 43% do not survive a week.

These are people with advanced liver disease and many of their lives could have been saved if they had been diagnosed earlier in primary or secondary care and had been given advice on risk factors like alcohol and management of their liver disease.

The analysis is being presented at the British Association of Liver Disease annual conference in Glasgow. The data also reveals that these deaths occur in relatively young people. 60% of these patients are under 64 years of age and that one in five are under the age of 50.

Liver disease has increased by 400% since 1970 and it’s the biggest cause of death in those aged between 35-49 years old in the UK.[1]

This new data highlights the urgent need for improvements in early detection of the disease as most patients are being diagnosed too late in an emergency setting.

Professor Matthew Cramp, president at BASL, says: “Many people with liver disease are unaware that they have it because there are usually have no symptoms in the early stages.  Too often the first a patient knows about their liver disease is when they are admitted as an emergency to hospital with life threatening complications. Even with the doctors’ best efforts some patients are so ill that their life cannot be saved.”

“It’s vital that GPs and other healthcare professionals identify those at risk so that more patients are diagnosed at an early stage.”

The research used Office for National Statistics mortality data and Hospital Episode Statistics data supplied by NHS Digital. Other alarming facts highlighted by the research:

·         29.1% of the patients who died in hospital had no previous admission in the year

·         20.8% had only one previous admission in the year before they died

·         25.3% of those who die do not survive more than 3 days in hospital

·         43% of those who die do not survive more than a week in hospital.

·         2,230 liver patients die each year in hospital in a week or less from admission, that is 43 patients per week or 6 patients every day.

·         The majority (60%) of those dying from liver disease in hospital are under the age of 64 and 20% are under the age of 50.

·         At least two-thirds of the patients who died with no previous admission in the year before death died from alcohol related liver disease

·         Patients admitted to hospitals with specialist liver services are more likely to be seen by a specialist in liver disease and be admitted to ITU

Professor Matthew Cramp, president at BASL, says: “Despite being young and very sick, many patients die from the disease without ever being seen or cared for by a specialist. Patients with life-threatening liver disease complications need to be recognised quickly when they arrive at hospital and should be seen by a specialist with knowledge of liver disease quickly and treated according to Guidelines.”

This study found that the chance of these patients being seen by a specialist (Gastroenterologist or hepatologist) and being admitted to ITU was higher if they were admitted to a hospital with specialist liver services.

Matthew Cramp adds: “Smaller hospitals should link with specialist hospitals to consult with experts or transfer patients if appropriate.”

Liver problems develop silently with no obvious symptoms in the early stages yet if caught early, the disease can be reversed through lifestyle changes.  More than 90% of liver disease is due to three main risk factors: obesity, alcohol and viral hepatitis.

Pamela Healy, Chief Executive, British Liver Trust said, “This research highlights the liver disease epidemic we are facing in the UK. While the data presented is based on England only, this is likely to reflect the situation with liver disease in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.”

To coincide with the BASL conference, The British Liver Trust’s Love Your Liver roadshow is at the University of Strathclyde today offering free liver health screening and scanning.

Pamela continues: “Helping people understand how to reduce their risk of liver damage is vital to address the increase in deaths from liver disease. Although the liver is remarkably resilient, if left too late damage is often irreversible. I would urge everyone who is unable to attend the roadshow to take our online screener on our website to see if they are at risk.”

Performance at Marie Curie raises awareness of challenges accessing health & social care when supporting loved ones with terminal illnesses & life limiting conditions

An award-winning playwright will be raising awareness of the challenges supporting a family member with a terminal illness when he brings his performance to the Marie Curie Hospice, West Midlands, this October.

In ‘Fighting For Life,’ Brian Daniels explores ways older people struggle with accessing social and health care support, by letting audiences peek into the lives, heartaches and good times experienced by the true story of ‘Jim’ and ‘Joan.’

James and Joan Findlay have been married for 62 years. Joan has dementia and, with their four adult children leading busy lives elsewhere, her principal carer is her husband, James.

When James is diagnosed with motor neurone disease, the family find themselves navigating a fractured health and social care system to get their parents the help they need and to keep them together to the end.

The inspiration for the play came from the Findlay Report (published in 2006), which was written with the support of the Findlay family after the death of their parents.

By putting together their experiences and recommendations for how things could improve, the family wanted to chart the issues around caring for the elderly – particularly the most vulnerable – and help other families to get better support than they did.

It is now 13 years since the Findlay family’s experience and yet the same challenges exist for people living with complex needs at the end of life.

The play will be performed on Tuesday 8th October, 2.30 – 4pm, at the hospice on Marsh Lane, Solihull.

Suzanne McArthur, Allied Healthcare Professional and Community Engagement Lead, said:

“We are excited to be hosting such a thought-provoking play on a subject many of us are likely to face in our lifetime. The play highlights the struggles one family faces in dealing with the challenges of supporting a loved one who is terminally ill through its unique approach to story-telling.

“Here at the Marie Curie Hospice, West Midlands, we offer the reassurance of specialist care and support, in a friendly, welcoming environment, for people living with a terminal illness and their loved ones – whether someone is staying in the hospice, being supported at home or just dropping into one of our support groups or cafés.”

The performance will be followed by afternoon tea and a panel discussion. Dr. Helen Findlay, one of James and Joan’s children who is a member of Marie Curie’s Expert Voice Panel, will be joined by local professionals and service users, who will discuss themes raised in the play including the future of end of life care.

For tickets or more information, please contact: Suzanne.McArthur@mariecurie.org.uk

Kaia Health Announces 8 Million in Funding Led by Optum Ventures

Kaia Health, a digital therapeutics company, today announced an $8 million funding round, the second significant investment this year. The infusion of capital is led by Optum Ventures.

Kaia Health has developed a smartphone-based approach for managing a range of chronic conditions, with its leading product focused on musculoskeletal disorders (MSK) such as chronic back pain. The investment by Optum Ventures helps Kaia Health address the rising costs of treating MSK-related conditions, the difficulty patients have in accessing gold-standard treatment, and the need for innovative, scaleable and cost-effective technology solutions to confront this issue.

Kaia Health’s world-leading 2D motion tracking technology enables users to get real-time feedback on their exercise performance using their smartphone’s camera, which, when taken together with the platform’s psychological and eduction support, has been proven to outperform conventional therapy.

“The investment from Optum Ventures will allow us to explore integration opportunities throughout the complete patient treatment journey,” said Konstantin Mehl, Founder and CEO of Kaia Health. “We are proud to partner with Optum Ventures, a company at the forefront of improving healthcare.”

Optum Ventures’ investment will be used to accelerate sales growth in the U.S. healthcare market, extend the platform into other chronic indications and expand the supporting clinical evidence base.

“Kaia Health has taken a technology-led approach to create digital therapeutics that will make treatment more accessible to patients who need it,” said Heather Roxborough, Partner at Optum Ventures. “We believe Kaia Health’s digital therapeutic solutions will benefit those suffering from MSK disorders and are excited about its application in other indications.”

With three peer-reviewed clinical studies, including a randomized controlled trial recently published in NPJ Digital Medicine, Kaia Health has demonstrated its commitment to creating validated digital therapeutics and has additional clinical studies ongoing in the United States.

Project at Ulster University to develop new technology to combat heart failure receives Heart Research UK grant

A project at Ulster University aiming to develop a better way of powering mechanical heart pumps used to treat heart failure has received a grant of almost £250,000 from national charity Heart Research UK.

The Novel and Emerging Technologies (NET) grant has been awarded to Prof Omar Escalona and his team at Ulster University and at Craigavon Area Hospital (SHSCT) to develop an innovative wireless power solution for heart pumps used to support patients with heart failure.

Heart failure occurs when the heart is not able to pump enough blood around the body. Around 920,000 people in the UK are currently living with heart failure, and one-fifth of patients die within one year of diagnosis.

Whilst the only effective solution is a transplant, mechanical pumps known as left ventricular assist devices (LVADs) can support a failing heart.

LVADs significantly improve survival and quality of life in patients with advanced heart failure, and are increasingly used as a temporary bridge to transplantation or as permanent therapy.

However, the electric power is supplied to LVADs via a driveline cable through the skin which leads to a high incidence of infection.

The infection problem has prompted the development of wireless power transmission solutions for LVADs. However, the implanted energy receiver coil of these wireless systems causes heating in the tissues, leading to local skin and tissue damage.

Professor Escalona and his team are developing a new wireless system which transmits electromagnetic wave pulses of energy in a new way, meaning tissues can cool down between energy transmission pulses.

If successful, this could improve clinical outcomes and quality of life for heart failure patients and may accelerate a more widespread use of LVADs in the treatment of heart failure.

Prof Omar Escalona said: “This is an incredibly exciting project that really has the potential to improve outcomes for patients with heart failure who are a awaiting a heart transplant or who have been prescribed LVAD therapy for their heart condition.

“By reducing the risk of infection and local tissue damage, we hope to make LVADs a more viable option for patients, and see an increase in both their uptake and their therapeutic benefit.

“We are very grateful to Heart Research UK for appreciating our work at Ulster and supporting this research, and are looking forward to initiating the research project.

Kate Bratt-Farrar, Chief Executive at Heart Research UK, said: “We are delighted to be supporting Prof Escalona’s research, which has the potential to have a big impact on the lives of those living with heart failure.

“Our NET grants are all about backing new and innovative developments in medical technology that can quickly and efficiently translate into real patient benefits.

“The dedication we see from UK researchers is both encouraging and impressive and we at Heart Research UK are proud to be part of it.”

The £248,436 grant was awarded to Ulster University as part of Heart Research UK’s annual awards for research into the prevention, treatment and cure of heart disease.

In the last year, Heart Research UK has awarded more than £1.3 million in grants for medical research projects across the UK. To date, the charity has invested more than £25 million in medical research via its grants programme.

Healthcare Meets Electronics: Event Assesses the Opportunities

Registrations for the inaugural Healthcare Sensors Innovation event in Cambridge on 25-26 September is exceeding all expectations and nears venue capacity. The event is successfully bringing together the linchpins of the healthcare industry with the electronics industry to explore the opportunity in two specific areas: point of care diagnostics and continuous monitoring.

The event addresses the needs and opportunities for faster diagnosis, remote monitoring and treatment and the opportunity for new revenue streams, alongside the progress of the enabling technologies including biosensors, flexible electronics, low power electronics and connectivity.

Attendees include pillars of the healthcare industry such as AstraZeneca, GSK, Baxter Healthcare, Boston Scientific, Smith & Nephew, W.L. Gore and LifeScan.

Uniquely these organizations are brought together with those in electronics and electronics materials, including Analog Devices, Philips, STMicroelectronics, Samsung, Sun Chemical, Maxim Integrated, Molex, Nissha, Henkel, and many others.

Nadia Tsao, Senior Technology Analyst who runs the Life Sciences research practice at IDTechEx, reports, “The success of this event is down to its focus on two core growth areas: continuous monitoring and point-of-care diagnostics. With aging populations, shortage of medical staff, and the need to rapidly diagnose and treat based on accurate measurement data, this event focuses on pragmatic applications of technology innovations that are occurring now, such as the $7.5 billion electronic skin patches market.”

The event will be held at Clare College, part of the University of Cambridge. Cambridge was selected for the event location due to the large number of healthcare and pharmaceutical companies in the area and many world leaders in electronics have significant development bases there.

Healthcare Sensor Innovations is market led and analyst driven, meaning that industry analysts IDTechEx have devised the event based on showcasing market challenges and needs and how they are being addressed. Learn more and register now at www.HealthcareSensorInnovations.com

IDTechEx guides your strategic business decisions through its Research, Consultancy and Event products, helping you profit from emerging technologies. For more information on IDTechEx Research and Consultancy contact info@IDTechEx.com or visit www.IDTechEx.com.

Wearables Accelerate Healing of Chronic Wounds

Though the human body has a tremendous capability to heal itself, wound healing can stall and create chronic non-healing wounds due to a variety of reasons such as ischemia, bacterial contamination, and chronic inflammation. IDTechEx Research have published a comprehensive report, “Advanced Wound Care Technologies 2020-2030”, explaining why the incidence of chronic wounds is set to rise drastically in the next 10 years, and how electronic devices and other emerging technologies can address this upcoming challenge.

Previously, IDTechEx Research have reported on several different roles that electronics can play in the wound care process, including even preventing wounds from forming in the first place. IDTechEx has also written about smart bandages as the future of wound care. These smart bandages will monitor wounds and deliver directed therapy. While these smart bandages are still in development and thus a few years away from commercialization (and several more years away from mass adoption), there are already electronic bandages that are in use today in the care of chronic wounds.

Pulsed Electromagnetic Field Therapy

One such example of an electronic bandage is the RecoveryRx from BioElectronics. The RecoveryRX is a small device with a loop within which pulsed electromagnetic field (PEMF) therapy is delivered. Though PEMF therapy is primarily used in pain relief, the device has been shown to promote wound healing and reduce wound pain. It can easily be incorporated into wound dressings. One of the proposed mechanisms of action for PEMF is the reduction of inflammation and swelling at the wound. This device received FDA market clearance in July 2019.

Oxygen Therapy

Oxygen is critical to the wound healing process, and many patients undergo hyperbaric oxygen therapy (HBOT) to treat their chronic wounds. High concentrations of oxygen can trigger the growth of new blood vessels and production of collagen, both key to the wound healing process. However, HBOT is costly and inconvenient to patients. Inotec AMD have developed the Natrox, a portable device that supplies a high concentration of oxygen directly to the wound bed via a patch. The device, about the size of a mobile phone, generates oxygen via electrolysis.

Negative Pressure Wound Therapy

Finally, and by far the most common form of electronic bandage that is in use today, is the ultraportable negative pressure wound therapy (NPWT) device. NPWT refers to the application of negative pressure on the wound, which may be supplied by wall suction in the hospital, reusable, portable units, or increasingly, disposable ultraportable devices that fit within the patient’s pocket. These devices typically consist of a pump that provides the negative pressure, and a small canister to collect the exudate from the wound. With these ultraportable devices, patients now have the freedom to walk around and perform their daily activities while receiving NPWT. By increasing focus on patient mobility, and speeding up discharge from care facilities, ultraportable NPWT devices deliver significant benefit to both the patient and the healthcare system. Major companies with ultraportable NPWT devices include Smith & Nephew, ConvaTec, and Acelity.

To learn more about other uses of electronic skin patches, please refer to the IDTechEx Research report: “Electronic Skin Patches 2019-2029”. To find out more about Life Sciences research available from IDTechEx visit www.IDTechEx.com/LifeSci or to connect with others on this topic, IDTechEx Events is hosting: Healthcare Sensor Innovations 2019 Conference on 25 – 26 September 2019 in Cambridge, UK. Please visit www.IDTechEx.com/Cambridge.

IDTechEx guides your strategic business decisions through its Research, Consultancy and Event products, helping you profit from emerging technologies. For more information on IDTechEx Research and Consultancy contact research@IDTechEx.com or visit www.IDTechEx.com.

First medically approved back pain app in EU and UK aims to end the nationwide epidemic of back pain in UK offices

London, UK – Bad posture among UK office employees is a nationwide epidemic. Sitting at desks all day, slouching over computers and a general sedentary lifestyle has led one in five Brits to give up their job or reduce hours because of their condition1. Experts behind Kaia, the first and only medically approved back pain app in the EU and UK, want to end the nationwide epidemic of back pain in UK offices, and claim that a few simple changes in the workplace can help to reduce the risk.

‘Epidemic levels‘

According to WHO, back pain is the leading global cause of disability worldwide.2 Meanwhile, in the UK, an estimated one-third of the adult population are affected by back issues each year.3 And according to the Office for National Statistics, back pain accounts for almost 31 million days of work lost annually costing the UK economy £14 billion a year.4 In another study, 63% in higher managerial jobs attributed their back pain to bad posture, and took more days off sick for back pain than any other type of employee.

The Kaia back pain app was developed by digital therapy company Kaia Health in conjunction with physiotherapists, orthopaedic surgeons and clinical psychologists. The app offers video exercises with education, physiotherapy and psychological strategies. Users can chat online with a physiotherapist or sports scientist for motivation and exercise-related questions.

Video: Kaia back pain app unveils 10 exercises to relieve back pain at work:

http://ow.ly/SWcq30pomaN

Sedentary office occupations can cause back pain as a result of inactivity between back muscles and the spine – but this is not the only factor. A combination of high workload, posture, job dissatisfaction or fear over termination can increase the occurrence of back pain at work.

In an independent clinical study published recently in NPJ Digital Medicine, patients using Kaia reported significantly lower pain levels compared to the control group treated with physiotherapy and online education.

A few simple changes can help to reduce the risk of back pain in the workplace. These include:

●        Walk and talk during phone calls

●        Take a break from the screen every 30 minutes for at least two minutes

●        Exercise regularly at your desk including arm stretches and neck rolls

●        Walk over to and talk with a colleague rather than emailing them

●        Arrange a workplace assessment to optimise the seating position and workstation

●        Meditate for 10 minutes. Be mindful of the influence workplace stress and strain has

●        Sit correctly with your thighs at right angles to your body or sloping slightly down

Stephan Huber, Chief Medical Officer at Kaia Health, says: at Kaia says: “The core problem is our modern, sedentary working life. We’re hunched at desks all day and this puts a strain on our back. We’re encouraging UK employers to adopt a holistic approach to tackling back pain in and out of the workplace – this could include increased access to exercise and relaxation like the Kaia app offers. Implementing these measures systematically for workers could lead to a more active way of dealing with the condition – and this will help to alleviate back pain and reduce the strain on the NHS.”

Kaia can be downloaded via the App Store and Google Play with a 7-day free-trial.

Strengthening Allied Health Professionals’ contribution to health and wellbeing

An Allied Health Professions Director from NHS Grampian has accepted the position of Visiting Professor at Robert Gordon University (RGU) to collaboratively support changes in healthcare delivery to meet the challenges of an ageing population.

Delivering the integrated healthcare models of tomorrow will mean that training for Allied Health Professionals (AHPs), such as Physiotherapists, Dietitians and Occupational Therapists, will have an increased focus on prevention, early intervention and becoming first point of contact practitioners.

The appointment of Susan Carr, NHS Grampian’s Director of Allied Health Professions and Public Protection, as Visiting Professor deepens the collaborative development of RGU’s demand-led teaching and research in line with the workforce needs of the sector.

Susan said: “The very nature of an ageing population means that there is an increasing demand for Allied Health Professionals who have a very important role in keeping people active, independent, living at home and enjoying life. We also have to be aware that as people get older they can become frail and vulnerable, and this is where a good understanding of the public protection aspect comes in.

“RGU has always been proactive in this area. There’s a high level of expertise at the university, and it’s about finding ways we can work together to continuously improve that. The better we support students coming out of university, the better equipped they are to do their job and support that wider public protection role.”

The Full Review of the Shortage Occupation List in May, by the Migration Advisory Committee, highlights the healthcare challenges the UK faces, including an ageing population and an increase in young adults living with disabilities. The Scottish Government’s Active and Independent Living Programme outlines how AHPs have a key role in supporting Scotland through these challenges by transforming the way AHPs work with the public to co-create health and wellbeing.

RGU will work with Susan and NHS Grampian to provide quality placement opportunities alongside NHS staff and a curriculum collaboratively designed to meet the challenges of the industry. The collaboration will also support students’ contribution to the multi-agency public protection agenda to keep children, young people and adults safe from harm and give them the confidence to help those in vulnerable situations.

Head of The School of Health Sciences at RGU, Dawn Mitchell, said: “We’ve worked closely with Susan and her team over a number of years, and this partnership and collaboration has helped to shape the development of our Allied Health Professions’ educational portfolio.

“Offering the position of Visiting Professor recognises Susan’s extensive experience and influence, and her commitment to RGU’s School of Health Sciences.”

Susan takes a lead role in working with the Scottish Government, NHS Education for Scotland and practice colleagues through key membership in the national Allied Health Professions Directors’ group. Through close collaboration with RGU, Susan uses this influence to help policy makers and service providers gain awareness and increase support for the educational developments being created in response to rising demand for AHPs.

93-year-old surgeon shares ‘Tales of the Operating Theatre’

A 93-year-old surgeon who joined the NHS in its first month has launched a new book bringing to life significant medical moments from throughout history and his 71 years in practice.

Professor Harold Ellis CBE launched the book entitled Tales of the Operating Theatre and other essays’, as part of the AfPP annual Residential Conference held in York on 10 August 2019.  

Based on a collection of Ellis’ previously written journal papers, including the popular Surgical Firsts, The Name Behind the Instrument and Notable Women, the book comprises first-hand accounts of some of the most remarkable moments in medical history.

From Horatio Nelson’s famous amputation through to the introduction of anaesthesia and Marie Curie’s discovery of radium, the easy-to-read book will appeal to everyone, regardless of their association with the perioperative environment.

Gina Graydon, editorial assistant at AfPP who has been helping Harold with the publishing of his book said: “Professor Ellis has been writing for the AfPP Journal of Perioperative Practice for over 20 years and never fails to deliver a well written and interesting paper.

“We decided to provide him with the practical support required to release a book so that those outside of the operating theatre professions could enjoy his stories.”

“He really is a remarkable character, and this really comes to light throughout the entirety of his book.”

Professor Ellis, who was awarded a CBE for his services to surgery in 1987, first qualified in medicine at the University of Oxford in 1948, the very year and month that the National Health Service came into existence.

After spending two years training as a house surgeon in Oxford, he went on to practice as a graded surgical specialist in the Royal Army Medical Corps until 1952.

Immersing himself in a surgical career on his return, he spent the next eight years working as a senior registrar before founding the academic surgical unit at Westminster Medical school in 1960, where he practiced as a professor of surgery until his retirement in 1989.

Refusing to let go of his dedication to the healthcare system, he took on the position of clinical anatomist at Kings College London in 1993 and still remains in the position today.

In the final chapter of his book, Professor Ellis talks of his impressive career and how his views of the NHS have changed over the last seven decades.

“I have to confess that at the start of NHS, I barely even noticed it, but I later realised it’s importance and the benefits it brought.

“I became very proud that the United Kingdom pioneered this universal health scheme, free at the point of entry and not dependent on the patient’s bank balance, but this soon became an issue.

“But there was no way that anyone in those exciting early days of the NHS could have possibly foreseen that over the years, there would be spiralling costs as medical and surgical care became more sophisticated and expensive.

“As far as I’m concerned, the National Health Service holds a special place in the hearts of the British Public as well as in the hearts of all its employees.”

Professor Ellis’ book is already proving to be popular with over 100 copies sold at the launch event.

To purchase a copy, please email orders@afpp.org.uk or call 01423 881300.