WINGLIGHTS360 ON KICKSTARTER: Funding a new revolution in cycling safety

London – VIJAY SHAH

If you are a cyclist, or just happen to know someone who lives and breathes hi-viz, Lycra, and the wind through their hair while getting about on pedals and two wheels, you will know that cycling is a fun, adventurous and healthy sport. But like any sport, cycling comes with risks, and especially for urban cyclists, the roads of our cities are hazardous places where dangers can be unexpected.

 

On any road network, junctions pose the most danger for cyclists. According to the UK’s Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA), 75% of the 19,000 bicycle accidents a year in the country happen at junctions, where cyclists are forced to contend with often heavy traffic flows, large vehicles and blind spots. Many of these accidents are caused by drivers not spotting cyclists or being unaware of a cyclist making a turn at a crossroads. Today, a quarter of accidents involving cars and cycles are caused by drivers’ failure to judge cyclists’ paths, especially at night, where hand signals by cyclists may not be noticed by drivers. It is this type of statistic that has also discouraged many from taking up daily cycling. Whilst the number of commuters has increased by 144% over the last decade, 68% of non-cyclists still believe it is too dangerous to cycle on the roads, making cycle safety a key issue now more than ever.

Unlike cars, bikes have no way of indicating changes in direction, but a freshly minted technology startup dedicated to producing innovative cycling safety equipment has a solution to help reduce the large numbers of cycling injuries and deaths on Britain’s roads.

CYCL, a London-based cycling technology startup managed by co-founder and chief technology officer, Agostino Stilli, launched a revolutionary new product, WingLights, in 2015, with help from public donations raised via Kickstarter crowdfunding. This simple, yet ingenious, technology involves LED devices attached to the cyclist’s bicycle handlebars, which behave like the turn signals on motor vehicles. Designed to be lightweight, waterproof, shockproof and robust for outdoors use, the product was featured on the BBC programme ‘Dragons’ Den’ in 2017, where it was backed by dragon Nick Jenkins. The gadget was publicised on WIRED, Business Insider and Forbes, and was adopted as the ‘Future of Transport’ by the UK Government.

WingLights began to light the way for cycling safety innovation and in the three years since they were launched, CYCL has fitted 50,000 devices to bikes, including the entire delivery fleet at the British arm of  the takeaway restaurant chain Domino’s Pizza.

Three years after its launch, CYCL has returned to Kickstarter to raise money for the latest iteration of WingLights, inspired by the feedback left by the gadget’s users and the original project’s supporters from Kickstarter. One story in particular stuck out. A cyclist going for a coastal ride in Dorset lost both her front and back lights and retained visibility on her route only by tapping WingLights repeatedly for hours before getting home safely (the original WingLights switch off automatically after 45 seconds). There was a clear need for a steady light mode to provide constant visibility.

 

CYCL’s design team went back to the drawing board, developing an enhanced version of the WingLights with permanent white/red side light functions. They also added an improved utility function where all the cyclist needs to do is snap the gadget on the ends of the bike’s handlebars and switch on: one tap for flashing indicators, and a continuous hold for steady side lights.
The new version, WingLights360, also comes packed with a helpful selection of new key features to help keep cyclists safe. Constructed from CNC aluminium for strength and lack of bulk, the devices are attached to the handlebars using magnets, and when not in use, can be tucked away on the person as a handy keyring. Perfect for the commute, they are now USB rechargeable, with a 3 hours battery operation interval and can be charged in under 30 minutes. The product has already become hot property before its impending launch with Forbes magazine naming WingLights360 their Forbes’ Top Cycling Gadget for 2018.

CYCL is one of a breed of startups catering to previously unexplored and poorly catered-for technological markets and is highly passionate about improving cyclists’ safety on the roads. The firm’s co-founder, Luca, said: “We have created a product based on the concept that motor vehicles have white and red side lights. We wanted to recreate this for the bicycle market, to ensure cyclists’ positioning and intentions are clear to other road users”.

CYCL officially launched the WingLights360 fundraiser to the general public this past Tuesday (11 September 2018). You can donate to the fund at this Kickstarter page. Send enquiries to info@cycl.bike .

cycl.bike

 

SOURCES:

Agostino Stilli/CYCL.

“Compatibility” – CYCL/Indive ltd https://cycl.bike/compatibility/

IMAGE CREDITS:

CYCL

 

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SOCIAL HOUSING: British government launches report on tenant experiences, housing reforms

London – VIJAY SHAH

The UK Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) has unveiled a report detailing the experiences of people living in social housing and the inequalities and stigma they face as social tenants, HEM News Agency exclusively reports.

Ministers with the MHCLG, formerly the Department for Communities and Local Government, launched through their social media outlets a document, the ‘Social Housing Green Paper‘, as part of an ambition to tackle the widespread stigma against families and individuals residing in council-owned and housing association-owned properties and estates. The paper also highlights the government’s intention to give support to ‘thriving communities’ based around social housing in the United Kingdom.

 

The green paper forms part of the governmental open consultation on a ‘new deal for social housing’, which may signal a change of direction for the country’s ruling Conservatives, who have been castigated by liberal sections of British society for enacting policies that have targeted the welfare state , an attack on the poor and deprived, according to critics of government policy.

In it, the MHCLG has proposed ‘fundamental reforms’ in the social housing sector in order to benefit users, give greater rights and voices to renters and to re-balance the relationship between tenants and landlords, as the national housing crisis forces more and more to rent from private landlords and associations.

The paper also proposes changes to the controversial ‘Right to Buy’ policy. Instituted by the late prime minister, Margaret Thatcher, in the 1980s, this policy allowed council tenants to buy their rented homes direct from the council, but has been criticised for causing a explosion in sometimes exploitative buy-to-lets and reductions in the numbers of available social housing. One change put forward is to give local government bodies greater powers to replace homes purchased by former tenants.

The paper was released today on the UK government’s official online portal, along with a promotional video which summed up the main points of the consultation document.

SOURCES:

HEM Businesses, HEM News Agency, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/halfeatenmind/lists/hem-businesses

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Govt, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/mhclg

“Open consultation A new deal for social housing” – Ministry of Housing, Communities & Local Government/GOV.UK (14 August 2018) https://www.gov.uk/government/consultations/a-new-deal-for-social-housing

TODDLER ACID ATTACK: Worcester 3-year-old deliberately assaulted with chemical

Worcester – VIJAY SHAH via HARLEY TAMPLIN and Metro

A three-year-old child was the deliberately-targeted victim of a shocking acid attack in the English town of Worcester, leaving the boy with severe injuries, according to local police in a report published by online paper Metro today.

West Mercia police, say that the child was attacked intentionally, but as this was a breaking news story, there have so far been no details published as to the motive or circumstances of the attack. The horrific incident took place yesterday late afternoon while the child was with guardians at a Home Bargains store at the Shrub Hill Retail Park in Tallow Hill, a district of the normally peaceful town. The child was ferried to a local hospital with serious burns to his arms and face.

 

Police sources have released CCTV camera footage of three men in casual summer clothing they urgently need to speak to. The images can be found on the Metro article linked below this one.

Officers have arrested one suspect, a 39-year-old man from Wolverhampton on suspicion of conspiracy to commit grievous bodily harm and is now in police custody.

Chief Superintendent Mark Travis said: “At this time we are treating this as a deliberate attack on a three-year-old boy.”

‘The incident will rightly shock the local community and I would like to reassure local people that we are carrying out a thorough investigation to identify those responsible. ‘At this time, the motive for the attack is unclear.

‘Officers are working hard to establish exactly what happened and what the substance involved was.

‘The three men in the photo may have information vital to our investigation. I am sure someone will recognise them and I would urge anyone with information to contact us as a matter of urgency.”

SOURCES:

HEM Newsbreakers, HEM News Agency, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/halfeatenmind/lists/hem-newsbreakers

Metro, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/MetroUK

“Boy, 3, left with serious injuries after ‘deliberate’ acid attack” – Harley Tamplin, Metro/Associated Newspapers Limited (22 July 2018) https://metro.co.uk/2018/07/22/boy-3-seriously-injured-deliberate-acid-attack-7745481/?ito=twitter

IMAGE CREDIT:

“SO8555 : Shrub Hill Retail Park, Worcester” – Jaggery, geograph (29 July 2017) http://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/5491172 © Copyright Jaggery and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

‘LITTLE SCRATCHERS NURSERY’ – Parents complain after toddler son kicked from preschool for scratching classmates

Hull – VIJAY SHAH via ADAM SMITH and Metro

The family of a 2-year-old boy in the United Kingdom has lodged a formal protest after his nursery had him booted out for attacking other preschoolers, claiming that the suspension would ‘ruin his future’, tabloid news site and paper Metro reports.

Danny McKenzie-Love previously attended the Panda Nursery daycare centre in the east Yorkshire city of Hull, but he found himself without a place after nursery staff claimed he was assaulting other children by scratching their faces. He was suspended, although Panda Nursery have promised to let Danny back in if his behaviour improved.

 

According to Danny’s grandmother, Sharon Love, the trouble started soon after her grandson began attending the preschool. She told Metro: “He has only just turned two and we took him for half-an-hour over the Easter holidays and within that half an hour he scratched a bairn (child).

‘After the Easter break, he went back again and scratched another little girl’s face so her mother took her out of the nursery altogether. The day after he scratched another little girl and they suspended him for a week.”

After complaints from other parents about the little kid’s reign of scratchy terror, Panda Nursery’s directors ordered a meeting and told Sharon and Danny’s mother Charley that their child would no longer be allowed to attend as his behaviour was a threat to the other children. The grandmother however complained about the decision, stating that Danny had not been given a ‘fair chance’ and that the nursery was warned about his ‘tendencies’ to scratch the faces of other toddlers.

Sharon said: “He doesn’t swear or throw things – he is a really good bairn but now and then he will go for another child.’

She added: “Sometimes in the street we have got to watch him with other children. We haven’t got to the bottom of it and we don’t know what the problem is yet. ‘He has got challenging behaviour but they haven’t given him a chance. They haven’t worked with him and I am so disgusted. He has only just turned two and is only a baby but they have pretty much expelled him.”

A spokesman for the nursery, based at Marvell House in Cranbourne Street, said: “We take the safety and care of all the children in our nursery extremely seriously.

‘As a result of a number of incidents involving this child we were unfortunately left with no option but to suspend him until his behaviour improved, he has not been expelled and we said that once the behaviour issues had been addressed we would welcome him back to the nursery. ‘We explained that the risk of further incidents meant that we had to act formally to ensure we could continue to provide a safe and caring environment for all the children attending the nursery.”

SOURCES:

Metro, Facebook, Facebook Inc. https://www.facebook.com/MetroUK/

“Nursery kicks out boy, 2, for scratching other kids and his family is livid” – Adam Smith, Metro/Associated Newspapers Limited (28 April 2018) http://metro.co.uk/2018/04/28/nursery-kicks-out-boy-2-for-scratching-other-kids-and-his-family-is-livid-7506132/?ito=social

IMAGE CREDIT:

“Stand Child Red Looking Look Girl Naughty Little” – Max Pixel https://www.maxpixel.net/Stand-Child-Red-Looking-Look-Girl-Naughty-Little-474126

 

LONDON STABBING EPIDEMIC: Sixth teen attacked in just 1.5 hours

London – VIJAY SHAH via MARK HODGE, ALEX MATTHEWS and The Sun

Six teenagers were stabbed in the space of just ninety minutes as the UK capital of London experienced a wave of violence largely against young people, giving the city a higher murder rate than New York for the first time in modern history.

Tabloid newspaper The Sun reported that six youths were stabbed in just 1 1/2 hours yesterday, including a boy of just 13 years of age, who was left fighting for his life. The wave of stabbings began with a man in his twenties being attacked in the east London district of Walthamstow, The Sun stated.

 

The stabbing of the 20-something happened on Friday lunchtime. Then at 5.30 pm local time, a 15-year-old was stabbed in East India Dock Road in the Poplar area of east London, followed by three males, two aged just fifteen, attacked in Grove Road, Mile End thirty minutes later. Then at exactly 6.57 pm, the thirteen-year-old was stabbed in Newham, east London, and was quickly taken to hospital by ambulance where he is in a ‘critical condition’. Then ten minutes later, another teenage male was stabbed in Ealing Broadway, west London, taking Friday’s toll of casualties to seven in the space of a handful of hours, according to Sun reporters.

In Ealing Broadway, a witness told The Sun Online how they chanced upon one of yesterday’s stabbing victims lying in a pool of his own blood. The woman, who wished to remain anonymous, said: “Before I saw him, I heard a commotion as I approached but thought nothing of it.

“But then when I got there I saw a young male lying with blood visibly on his chest.

“And when I spoke to another witness, she said she saw three men fighting and two of them ran off after the chap had been stabbed three times.

“She said he had been stabbed once in the heart, or chest area, once in the stomach and once in the upper thigh.

“He didn’t move at all. It was really eerie. He was just very still for the whole time I was there.”

She added: “Youngsters don’t see the value in life at the moment.”

In Walthamstow, where the stabbing spree kicked off, police and ambulance crews and vehicles were reported to be ‘swarming’ over the site of the incident. Locals took to social media network Twitter to give their accounts and shock at the senseless violence. 

One witness said: “Another Stabbing on my road in Walthamstow. This is getting out of hand.

Another resident added: “Good lord, another stabbing in Walthamstow. Stay safe if you’re in London these next few days, very scary.

A spokesman for the Metropolitan Police said: “Officers and LAS attended the location.

“The victim – believed to be aged in his 20s – has been taken to hospital.

“We await an update as to his condition.”

The wave of stabbings and shootings in London over the past few weeks saw an innocent young woman, Tanesha Melbourne-Blake, aged only 17, gunned down by unknown assailants while chatting with a group of friends outside near her home in Tottenham, north London. She was believed to have been caught in the crossfire of a gangland feud between rival gangs in Tottenham and the neighbouring Wood Green, a phenomenon the British media had referred to as ‘postcode wars’.

Last Monday, Amaan Shakoor, aged 16, was shot dead after a gunman blasted him in the face outside a leisure centre in Walthamstow in a gangland killing. Friends believed he was the victim of mistaken identity. Also yesterday, Israel Ogunsola, eighteen years, was stabbed near his home in Homerton, east London. He was believed to have been friends with Tanesha Melbourne-Blake.

Scotland Yard said it is currently investigating 55 suspected murders since the beginning of 2018 – including the deaths of two children whose bodies were found in Sussex.

The Met police and London Mayor Sadiq Khan are under increasing pressure to put an end to the bloodshed after eight murder probes were launched in London in January, 15 in February and 22 in March.

SOURCES:

Sherrie Bachell via Facebook.

“BLOODY SPREE London knife crime worsens – Seven stabbed including SIX in 90 minutes as boy aged just THIRTEEN left fighting for his life” – Mark Hodge and Alex Matthews, The Sun/News UK/News Group Newspapers Limited (6 April 2018) https://www.thesun.co.uk/news/5981153/mile-end-stabbing-attack-walthamstow-london-latest/

IMAGE CREDIT:

“Scotland Police Cordon” – Michel Curi, Flickr (22 December 2014) https://www.flickr.com/photos/119886413@N05/16056676866

BLUE PASSPORTS: British PM urged to explain passport decision to UK workers

London – VIJAY SHAH via PA/Aol

The British prime minister Theresa May has been urged to explain her government’s decision to provisionally award the printing of the UK’s post-Brexit passports to a French firm, reported AOL via news agency Press Association.

The UK plans to change the colour of its passport to dark blue from the current maroon once it leaves the European Union (EU) next year. Supporters of the withdrawal, dubbed ‘Brexit’ have called for a new passport design that reflects ‘Britishness’, but have been angered by the Government’s choice of awarding the tender for the new travel documents to the French-Dutch security printers Gemalto, rather than continuing their current contract with Basingstoke-based company De La Rue. Gemalto offered the cheapest price for the tender, which will only involve producing the blank passport books and biometric chips.

 

The CEO of De La Rue had earlier this week expressed scorn at the tender award, saying the PM should explain herself in person to the printery’s workers in the north-east of England. Martin Sutherland said that it was “disappointing and surprising” that the blue passport so championed heavily by Leave supporters as an ‘icon of British identity’ would be printed outside the country, in France.

Home Office ministers however said that the tendering process has not been finalised and that De La Rue would have the right to appeal the interim decision to award passport manufacturing to Gemalto.

Mr Sutherland said: “I think we have heard over the last few weeks and months ministers more than happy to come on the media and talk about the blue passports and the fact that the blue passport is an icon of British identity.

“Now this icon of British identity is going to be manufactured in France.”

Sutherland said his firm had been producing passports for the UK for the last ten years “without a single hiccup” but had been “undercut on price” and would appeal against the decision.

Referring to the factory employees of De La Rue’s printing unit in Gateshead, he said: “I’m going to have to go and face those workers, look at them in the whites of the eyes and try and explain to them why the British government thinks it’s a sensible decision to buy French passports not British passports.”

He added: “I would actually like to invite Theresa May or Amber Rudd (the British home secretary) to come to my factory and explain to my dedicated workforce why they think this is a sensible decision to offshore the manufacture of a British icon.”

Mr Sutherland said that his firm was “not allowed to compete for the French passport contract”.

Tory MP Sir Bill Cash, chairman of the Commons European Scrutiny Committee, branded the decision “completely wrong and unnecessary”.

Sir Bill said: “I think it is incongruous to say the least. It is completely unnecessary and it is symbolically completely wrong.

“Whatever the conditions which led to the decision in terms of pricing, the fact is that this is a symbolic event.”

Former cabinet minister Priti Patel told The Sun, a UK tabloid newspaper: “This should be a moment that we should be celebrating. The return of our iconic blue passport will re-establish the British identity.

“But to be putting the job in the hands of the French is simply astonishing. It is a national humiliation.

“I would urge Amber Rudd and the Government to look again at the powers they have to see what they can do.”

Liberal Democrat Brexit spokesman Tom Brake told the Press Association: “The blue passport saga is turning into a farce.”

A Home Office spokeswoman said: “We are running a fair and open competition to ensure that the new contract delivers a high quality and secure product and offers the best value for money for customers.

“All passports will continue to be personalised with the holder’s details in the United Kingdom, meaning that no personal data will leave the UK.

“We do not require passports to be manufactured in the UK. A proportion of blank passport books are currently manufactured overseas, and there are no security or operational reasons why this would not continue.”

SOURCES:

Facebook, Facebook Inc. https://www.facebook.com/

“May urged to explain passport decision to British workers” – Press Association via Aol. (22 March 2018) https://www.aol.co.uk/news/2018/03/22/may-urged-to-explain-passport-decision-to-british-workers/?ncid=webmail

IMAGE CREDIT:

“Fly Away Home” – King Huang, Flickr (12 January 2009) https://www.flickr.com/photos/kinghuang/3193491202

 

 

POST-BREXIT UBS: Banking giant to move London jobs to Europe amidst uncertainty

London – VIJAY SHAH via KALYEENA MAKORTOFF and Independent

The uncertainty about the political and economic ramifications of the United Kingdom’s exit from the European Union next year have set European businesses with operations in the UK on edge in the past year. Now Swiss banking giant UBS is the latest bank to doubt its ongoing presence in Britain after the withdrawal, with UK newspaper The Independent reporting recently that the bank is planning to move jobs from London to Germany.

As talks between Britain’s prime minister Theresa May and the European Commission see trade deals and negotiations complicated and rejected left and right, UBS has said it expects to merge its British arm with its Germany-based European facility before the Brexit deadline of 29th March, 2019.

 

Many of the senior staff in London will be transferred to positions in Europe, mainly in Frankfurt, with the ‘lack of a Brexit transition deal’ being the main reason, causing considerable headache for UBS senior executives worried about possible fallout to the UK’s finance industry, of which UBS is a major player.

The move will mostly affect staff who serve Europe-based clients as well as those working in the bank’s central risk management and support services, which will be centralised in Frankfurt.

​UBS said its plans would be put in motion “in the absence of adequate transition relief being agreed and passed into law by the United Kingdom and the European Union”.

“The nature of the UK’s future relationship with the EU remains unclear,” UBS said.

“Any future limitations on providing financial services into the EU from our UK operations could require us to make potentially significant changes to our operations in the UK and the EU, and to our legal structure.”

It added: “We further anticipate that some staff would be relocated as a result.”

Many in the UK financial industry had been hoping for the maintenance of ‘passporting rights’ which allow UK and mainland European institutions to operate seamlessly in each other’s territory with few restrictions, but the dithering in the Brexit negotiations casts doubts in any future interconnectivity between the two.

UBS had not formally stated how many jobs will move from Britain, but the Independent has stated that the number will be in the region of 200. The bank does plan to keep its UK wealth management, asset management and non-EEA investment bank business in the country, where it employs around 5,000 people, mainly in London.

“The timing and extent of the actions we take may vary considerably depending on regulatory requirements and the nature of any transition or successor agreements with the EU,” UBS said.

UBS follows in the wake of several other international finance leaders who are re-orienting themselves towards the Continent in the aftermath of Brexit. German firm Deutsche Bank plans to also move staff, possibly in the hundreds, out of London, while HSBC will relocate 1,000 jobs to France. Another thousand jobs will go with JP Morgan, which plans to beef up its European operations, while American heavyweights Goldman Sachs and Morgan Stanley may also move staff across various EU locations, according to the newspaper.

SOURCES:

Sonel BC.

BritCits, Facebook, Facebook Inc. https://www.facebook.com/britcits1/

“Brexit: UBS to move London jobs to Europe as lack of transition deal forces ‘significant changes’ ” – Kalyeena Makortoff, Independent (10 March 2018) http://www.independent.co.uk/news/business/news/brexit-ubs-london-staff-move-europe-transition-deal-investment-bank-a8247516.html

IMAGE CREDIT:

“London’s financial district” – Michael Duxbury, Flickr (18 September 2011) https://www.flickr.com/photos/michaelduxbury/6159853445

NORTHERN IRELAND AFTER BREXIT: Residents to be able to keep EU membership

Belfast – VIJAY SHAH via JON STONE and Independent

As both the Brexit talks in Brussels and the situation over the status of the border between Northern Ireland and the Irish Republic dominates political news in the U.K., the negotiation teams of the two sides have made a concession for residents of Northern Ireland, whereby they can still be EU citizens after Brexit is finalised in two years’ time, the Independent reported recently.

 

UK citizens born in the province will be able to continue their EU membership thanks to a deal struck by British prime minister Theresa May on Friday morning. The deal is a further continuation of an older agreement between the UK and EU whereby Northern Irish residents can apply for a Irish Republic passport. Even after the UK’s withdrawal, this agreement will be allowed to continue, meaning a Northern Ireland-born person can adopt Irish citizenship and therefore take advantage of border-free travel with the EU, as the southern part of Ireland is remaining within the union.

“Both Parties acknowledge that the 1998 Agreement recognises the birth right of all the people of Northern Ireland to choose to be Irish or British or both and be accepted as such,” the joint text agreed by the two sides stated in quotes published by the Independent.

“The people of Northern Ireland who are Irish citizens will continue to enjoy rights as EU citizens, including where they reside in Northern Ireland.”

The EU Commission have also suggested that Irish citizens from both sides of the border resident in the province should also be able to continue enjoying their rights as EU citizens post-Brexit. The deal is part of a breakthrough in recent talks, which hit a stumbling block over the question of the Irish border. The UK and EU will now move on to discussing future trade agreements.

SOURCES:

Cindy Chak.

I LOVE MY ‘FOREIGN’ SPOUSE: defend the rights of cross-border couples., Facebook, Facebook Inc. https://www.facebook.com/groups/139807999382936/

“Brexit: Northern Irish will be able to remain EU citizens under deal” – Jon Stone, Independent (8 December 2017) http://www.independent.co.uk/news/uk/politics/brexit-northern-ireland-keep-eu-citizenship-irish-border-a8099176.html

IMAGE CREDIT:

“Tuesday: my Irish passport arrived” – Sarah-Rose, Flickr (20 March 2012) https://www.flickr.com/photos/oh_darling/6999195061

EHI LIVE 2017: Two days left until leading healthcare event

Birmingham – VIJAY SHAH

People in the world of healthcare technology are eagerly awaiting the arrival of ehi LIVE 2017 in just two day’s time, as the UK’s leading get-together for experts and users of digital healthcare gets ready at Hall 1 of the NEC Arena in Birmingham on the 31st October and 1st November 2017.

 

ehi LIVE, an event which aims to bridge the gap between medical technology, clinicians and their patients, is a yearly occurrence and is organised by international exhibitions agency Informa Life Sciences Exhibitions. ehi LIVE will look at key developments in the digital healthcare field, such as hospital record keeping, cybersecurity, healthcare innovations and new methods of bringing technology into patient-doctor interactions. The event also plays host to a special ‘Knowledge Hub’ which features experts in the fields of digital health and cyber security, offering their thoughts on the latest developments and concepts such as the cloud, wearables, informatics, ‘big data’ and social media, and how these can benefit patients, doctors, nurses and healthcare providers such as the NHS.

ehi LIVE will host nine individual conferences within the event, alongside an exhibition with a lineup of 150 companies and providers in healthcare. An expected total of more than 4,000 attendees are expected to visit the event over the two days. There will also be a late night drinks bash and an awards ceremony.

Key speakers taking the stand at ehi LIVE 2017 include Will Smart, the chief information officer of NHS England; Claire Murdoch, the National Mental Health Director, also from the English NHS, alongside their colleague Dr. Robert Varnam, head of general practice development. Also speaking will be Prof. Daniel Ray (data director and informatics professor at NHS Digital in Leeds) and Paul Park, a CCIO at Oxfordshire CCG. Exhibitors include Elsevier, Fujifilm, Hospedia, HP, IBM Watson Health and LG Electronics, among many others in household names and new entrants in the digital healthcare field.

DISCLAIMER: The author of this article is employed by Informa.

SOURCES:

“Informa Accounts” – HEM News Agency, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/halfeatenmind/lists/informa-accounts

ehi Live 2017, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/EHILive

“ehi LIVE, UK’s largest ehealth exhibition 31Oct- 1Nov 2017, Birmingham” – ehi Live/Informa Life Sciences Exhibitions/Informa https://www.ehilive.co.uk/en/home.html

“EXHIBITOR LIST” – ehi Live/Informa Life Sciences Exhibitions/Informa https://www.ehilive.co.uk/en/exhibit/exhibitor-directory.html

IMAGE CREDIT:

ehi Live 2017, Twitter, Twitter Inc. https://twitter.com/EHILive

 

CAMBRIDGE PREGNANCY CITIZENSHIP DEMAND: NHS compels UK woman with Polish surname to prove her residence

Cambridge – VIJAY SHAH via NICOLE MORLEY and Metro

A British-born pregnant woman who changed her surname to her husband’s Polish-origin one was forced by a hospital to prove her citizenship or be refused ante-natal care under the National Health Service (NHS), online news site Metro.co.uk (Metro) reported yesterday.

Emma Szewczak-Harris from Chesterton, a suburb of Cambridge, who is eight months pregnant, was asked to prove she was a British citizen by a letter sent from the city’s Addenbrooke Hospital, despite her still retaining her maiden name in her double-barrelled surname and having a typically English first name. The mother-to-be told Metro that the letter and actions of Addenbrooke Hospital made her feel a ‘second-class citizen’, and that it was a ‘disgrace’, especially given the fact that Szewczak-Harris was not asked for residency proof in previous appointments.

 

Szewczak-Harris said: “I’ve absolutely no idea why I received it other than my surname,

‘As I’m pregnant, I’m going to the hospital a lot at the moment, but no one has at any point asked for my credentials which – as a born and bred Brit – are completely sound.

So I’m stumped and angry that women in my condition, who are anxious enough as it is, should be made to worry about their access to care.’

After 26 years of living in the country and using the NHS, I’ve never had my identity policed until now,’ 

‘Am I going to go into labour and then be denied treatment?”

The letter, which was seen and shared by Metro, told Szewczak-Harris that she had failed to provide documents at her last appointment proving that she was entitled to free NHS treatment as an expectant mother, before giving a list of suitable proofs of identity and residence. It was dated October 12 and was issued by Cambridge University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. Furthermore, the letter demanded Szewczak-Harris supply the necessary documentation by a deadline of October 30, 2017.

A hospital spokesperson said the letter had been sent out as part of a ‘pilot scheme’ aimed at preventing patients from abroad taking advantage of NHS treatment for free and that the hospital had a policy of asking non-emergency maternal care patients to bring proof of residence with them to appointments.

A Cambridge University Hospitals spokesman said: “The Department of Health has asked the trust to pilot a scheme to allow us to better monitor and collect payment from overseas patients who are not eligible for free NHS treatment.

‘This brings us into line with national NHS guidelines and how many other trusts operate.

‘From August 1, 2017 all non-emergency patients in maternity and urology have been asked in their appointment letters to provide two forms of identification when they attend – one to prove identity and one as proof of residence. Once you have provided this information you will not be asked again.

‘If a patient is not eligible for free NHS care, they will be charged for any treatment we give to them and, from October 23, there is a statutory requirement to withhold treatment where clinical staff assess if this routine aspect of their care can wait until they return to their home country.”

Szewczak-Harris said she was not going to reply to the letter.

“What are they going to do? I’m entitled to that,” she said. “My husband is very angry about it. He has faced this kind of thing before but as someone who works in medicine on the Addenbrooke’s site, he’s horrified about it. This makes us feel like second-class citizens.”

Hospitals in England may be required to check the residency and immigration status of all patients who use their services from October 23 (tomorrow) according to campaign group Docs Not Cops. The controversial ruling on English NHS trusts could mean people unable to prove their nationality would have to pay for treatment upfront. The rule is a sign of the UK Conservative government’s hardening stance on immigration and in particular, government fears of ‘health tourists’ from outside the UK coming to the country to help themselves to free treatment.

SOURCES:

Renata Soares Barros.

We Are #StopBrexit – We Are The 48%, Facebook, Facebook Inc. https://www.facebook.com/groups/1586336064998120/

“Pregnant Brit forced to prove nationality by NHS after taking Polish husband’s name” – Nicole Morley, Metro/Associated Newspapers Limited (21 October 2017) http://metro.co.uk/2017/10/21/pregnant-woman-denied-nhs-treatment-after-taking-polish-husbands-name-7016266/amp/

IMAGE CREDIT:

“February 5, 2010 – Paperwork” – Caitlin Childs, Flickr (5 February 2010) https://www.flickr.com/photos/nerdcoregirl/4335907588