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Preventability is key in healthcare rationalisation, says RoSPA CEO Tom Mullarkey

Preventability must be at the heart of efforts to ease the rising pressure on healthcare services, says Tom Mullarkey, chief executive of RoSPA, in the charity’s latest Annual Review.

In the RoSPA Annual Review 2015/16, which is published today, he says: “If your business is prevention, you can hardly avoid the metric of intervention that is preventability.”

For children, for example, he sets out that 65 per cent of preventable deaths, 75 per cent of preventable hospital admissions and more than 90 per cent of preventable A&E attendances are caused by accidents. And across the population as a whole, accidents cause 65 per cent of preventable A&E attendances – about 7.5million.

Given the rising demands on healthcare services, he describes prioritisation as “the only way ahead”, and outlines RoSPA’s analytical tool, The Matrix, which enables local authority decision-makers to make an assessment of preventability across the full range of public health issues.

“The Matrix has now been tried by several local authorities leading to two incredible conclusions,” he says. “The first is that we are not, as a nation, spending our money optimally, to give our people the longest, healthiest lives. The second is that when we do the impact calculations more rationally, accident prevention becomes a major priority.”

RoSPA’s Annual Review 2015/16 describes the charity’s work towards its mission to save lives and reduce injuries. Among the highlights were 3.6 million views of RoSPA’s main website (www.rospa.com), which contains extensive advice and information on home, road, workplace, leisure and education safety, plus an additional 2.2 million views of RoSPA’s dedicated child car seats website (www.childcarseats.org.uk). Across England, the total number of families to benefit from a cleaning products safety campaign reached 250,000, while 15,000 Glasgow families received safety advice about liquid laundry capsules in 2015/16 alone.

The RoSPA Annual Review 2015/16 is available at www.rospa.com/annualreview/

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