Sky News claimed 55% of the NHS budget is spent on over 85s – the REAL amount is VERY different

A Sky News article claimed that 55% of all NHS spending went on people 85+:

An independent fact-checking charity decided to research this claim.

Sky News told them it calculated the figures based on data published by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS), but the IFS told us they don’t recognise these figures. They have asked Sky for more information.

Other figures the charity has seen from the IFS suggest that the proportion of health spending across the UK (rather than just the NHS budget) which goes to those aged 85 and over is likely to be around 10% by 2021/22.

The Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) told them it wasn’t familiar with the figures used by Sky News, but did provide them with other information.

When compared to a 30 year-old, spending across the UK on health (not just the NHS) for an 85 year-old is projected to be 5.6 times higher in 2021/22, and twice as much for a 65 year-old. That’s taking account of the fact that not all people of those ages will necessarily need to use health care.

But that doesn’t mean that 85 year-olds will require 5.6 times as much of the budget as 30 year-olds, because there are fewer people at that age.

Using population projections for 2021 we can see that those aged 85 and over are projected to make up just 3% of the population of the UK. Those aged between 65 and 84 made up 16% and those aged 30-64 made up 45%.

Based on this, 10% of health spending across the UK would go to those over the age of 85 by 2021/22, 32% would go to those aged 65 to 84 and 35% would go to those between the age of 30 and 64.

“‘Britain’s fearless and independent Press is one of the foundations of democracy and must be protected’: Minister’s call to save print media as 300 local papers shut”

Owl says: Well, some local papers might be fearless and independent- but others are fearful and political toadies – naming no names …!

“Britain’s ‘fearless and independent’ Press is one of the ‘foundations’ of democracy and must be protected, the Culture Secretary has warned.

Matt Hancock has spoken out in defence of journalism as figures released today reveal that more than 300 local and regional titles have closed since 2007 – meaning some large towns are left without a local newspaper.

There are also 25 per cent fewer full-time journalism jobs than there were in 2007, while a quarter of all regional and local publications have closed. …

… The figures released today are part of a report conducted by research group Mediatique and commissioned by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

It found that the newspaper industry has been under ‘sustained threat’ for the past decade – with print advertising slashed in half since 2007.

The Mediatique report found that the ‘dramatic changes’ in revenue and number of publications had been fuelled by shifts in consumer behaviour – and the reliance on devices such as phones and tablets.

Figures by Mediatique revealed that there were 1,303 regional and local newspapers in 2007 compared with 982 in 2017.”

It’s going to take more than a yew tree branch to ward off evil at EDDC new HQ!

And who at EDDC was responsible for this press release that gives the (totally erroneous) impression that the sale of Knowle is 100% financing the new HQ?

“A yew tree branch has been placed on top of East Devon District Council’s new HQ to “ward off evil spirits”.

The topping out ceremony took place at Blackdown House in Honiton, which will be the council’s new home by January 2019.

As part of the ceremony, a yew tree branch was attached to the highest point of the building.

The ceremony was completed by council chairman Andrew Moulding and leader Ian Thomas. A council spokesman said it was “an age-old tradition”.

The authority plans to move from its current HQ in Sidmouth to Blackdown House in December 2018. The move will be financed by selling the property to Pegasus Life Ltd for £7.5m, which will turn it into a 113-apartment assisted-living community. …”

Why the Grenfell Tower fire happened – by a survivor

““Every single link in this chain is going to be found to be rotten and cancerous,” Daffern [the survivor who had lived there for 16 years and predicted the tragedy in his blog] said.

“The government didn’t implement the inquest recommendations after the Lakanal House fire where six people died in 2009. Had they done that Grenfell wouldn’t have happened. RBKC failed to carry out scrutiny of the TMO.

“The way the TMO [Tenant Management Organisation] operated, the handling of the contracts, the construction, through to the building regs, the materials that were used, the consultation process.”

When asked what links these failures, he said: “Greed, lack of respect, lack of humanity. It is the opposite of everything it should be. This is housing as a commodity to be exploited. It is not only in RBKC [Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea], it is what housing has become.”

Council auditors forced to audit!

Nowhere in this report is the question asked: how come internal and external auditors failed to spot this before it was too late?

“Auditors say that the quality and transparency of financial reporting at Northamptonshire County Council has prevented effective decision making.

In its interim audit report for the 2017–18 financial year, KPMG says that finance reports to the council’s cabinet are a barrier to proper financial governance.

The report follows intense scrutiny of the council’s financial problems which led to the issuing of a section 114 notice earlier in the year followed by the appointment of commissioners by central government to run the council.

KPMG said: “We reviewed the authority’s financial reports submitted to cabinet in 2017–18.

“We note that the reports are unclear and lack details, including in the accompanying appendices.”

In particular, it said, the council reports a forecast outturn variance of nil, despite this being the position after accounting for one-off measures.
This, it said, clouds the authority’s underlying performance.

“The full position can only be ascertained by piecing detailed outturns of individual directorates; even so, the inconsistency in reporting within each individual directorates makes this a very difficult exercise,” the report said.

KPMG said the budget report does not provide members with a clear view of the variances and overspends within each directorate.

“The narrative is often vague and written in dense management speak; the style does not promote clarity of reporting. This style of reporting is consistent across all directorates,” its report concluded.

The auditors criticised the authority for describing slippages in its savings plans as “budget delivery pressures”, language they said was “vague and does not truly reflect the issue”.

The report went on to criticise inconsistencies within budget books submitted by budget holders to the finance business partner teams.

These books, it said, allow the authority to keep track of expenditure and challenge overspends and underspends as necessary.

KPMG said: “In some cases it was clear that variances to the budget have been investigated as the budget books contained comments to support this.

“These variances were reported in the quarterly finance reports. In other cases there was very little detail in the budget books to support large variances, and in some cases these variances were not reported in the quarterly finance reports.” …

When is a not worker a worker?

A friend of mine has lost his job at RBS a month or so back. Has to sign on every other week, but is not unemployed as long as he proves that he is looking for work. He has to ‘work’ 16 hrs a week looking for work to get his NI paid. But he’s not unemployed; he’s just not working.”

Comment at:

Government non-expert “independent” expert refuses to ban combustible cladding used in Grenfell Tower

“Dame Judith Hackitt proved yesterday that appointing ‘independent’ experts is no guarantee that difficult policy areas can be somehow magically be set free from politics. She started off badly yesterday and it was downhill all the way afterwards. On the Today programme she struggled to explain why her review had failed to recommend an outright ban on combustible cladding. That was followed by an almost comical U-turn, saying that perhaps she should have recommended a ban. Then Housing Secretary James Brokenshire announced he would consult on a ban. It was not a coincidence that the panicked responses came after David Lammy, who has a moral authority ministers cannot ignore these days, declared the review a ‘whitewash’.

But things looked even worse later, when she told reporters “I am not an expert on Grenfell” and “has not looked into the details” of the fire that killed 71 people. With a Whitehallese worthy of Sir Humphrey Appleby, she declared her review was instead “triggered by the discovery that there were many other buildings that were not safe”. That’s true, but to say also that “my review was not triggered by the tragedy at Grenfell” was just plain daft.

On Question Time last night housing minister Dominic Raab said: “I’m sorry it’s taken so long” [to respond to Grenfell]. Meanwhile, a new report says four million homes are needed to solve the UK’s ‘epic’ housing crisis. Brokenshire needs to get a handle on his new brief rather quickly.”

Source: Huffington Post