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National

Hospital food rankings 'make NHS more transparent'

Rankings of hospital care according to the quality of the food they serve will help improve the transparency of the NHS, the Health Secretary has said.

Speaking as the Department of Health launched a crackdown on hospital food, Jeremy Hunt said:

We are making the NHS more transparent, giving patients the power to compare food on wards and incentivising hospitals to raise their game.

Many hospitals are already offering excellent food to their patients and staff. But we want to know that all patients have nourishing and appetising food to help them get well faster and stay healthy, which is why we're introducing tough new mandatory standards for the first time ever.

– Jeremy Hunt

Read: Hospital rates food as '5 star'

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National

Your views: The state of NHS hospital food

Viewers have expressed mixed reactions over the state of food in the nation's NHS hospitals - ranging from outrage to disbelief of criticism over Britain's healthcare system.

Yes we pay taxes...it's food...don't like it don't eat it! There are thousands of people all over the world who are suffering without food for days and people still moan! It's not a 5 star restaurant!

– Viewer Michelle Cagnasso
Viewer Kim Griffiths described the food as 'nasty, tasteless slop'.
Viewer Kim Griffiths described the food as 'nasty, tasteless slop'. Credit: Kim Griffiths

I used to serve food up on the wards. Food looks fine, yet as soon as it's put in the heating trolley it goes all sloppy. Also the lack of help with giving out the food to patients mean that on big wards even the heating trolley doesn't keep food warm for all the patients.

– Viewer Rachael Parnham

While in hospital once, I stated I was vegetarian. For lunch I received a beef salad. I explained to the staff member handing out meals that I was vegetarian and asked if I could possibly have something without meat, and after being tutted and sighed at, was presented with a chicken salad and told to 'pick the salad from around the meat'.

– Viewer Sarah Owen

Read: Government vows crackdown on unacceptable hospital food

We'd like to hear your views on hospital food

It is claimed by www.hospitalfood.org.uk that these photos are examples of the types of meals being served in the country's hospitals. ITV News Tyne Tees is not able to independently verify them.

We'd like to hear your views on this issue. Contact us on Twitter @ITVTyneTees or on Facebook facebook.com/tynetees

Chips, it's claimed, are a frequent accompaniment
Chips, it's claimed, are a frequent accompaniment Credit: hospitalfood.org.uk
Cheesy pasta and chips
Cheesy pasta and chips Credit: hospitalfood.org.uk
Meat with mashed potato and roast potato
Meat with mashed potato and roast potato Credit: hospitalfood.org.uk
Hotpot
Hotpot Credit: hospitalfood.org.uk
National

New rules crack down on 'unacceptable' hospital food

New NHS rules will banish unacceptable food in hospitals - meaning sloppy mashed potato and soggy vegetables may become a thing of the past.

The Department of Health is aiming to improve the quality and nutritional value of hospital food.
The Department of Health is aiming to improve the quality and nutritional value of hospital food. Credit: Yui Mok/PA Wire

For the first time hospitals will have to meet mandatory food standards as part of a long-mooted drive to raise its standards of food across the country, the Department of Health (DoH) said.

They will also be ranked according to the quality of their food and will be required to meet legally-binding standards.

Patients will be screened for malnutrition and given personal food plans, while hospital staff will have to ensure patients get the help they need so that they can physically eat and drink.

Healthy diets will be promoted to staff and visitors in hospital canteens, and what they serve will have to meet Government recommendations on salt, sugar and saturated fats.

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Pardew claims Colback's move to Newcastle helped secure England call-up

Colback has impressed since joining Newcastle
Colback has impressed since joining Newcastle Credit: PA

Newcastle United manager Alan Pardew has said he is convinced Jack Colback's move from Sunderland to Newcastle was a key factor in his first England call-up.

The 24-year-old midfielder was a surprise inclusion in Roy Hodgson's squad for next month's friendly against Norway and the Euro 2016 qualifier in Switzerland just weeks after leaving Sunderland, where he had been since the age of 10.

Pardew believes the way Colback has negotiated his controversial switch from Wearside to Tyneside will not have gone unnoticed at Soho Square.

The 53-year-old said: "It's great for north-east football, because he did a lot of this [to earn his] call-up at Sunderland."

For more on this story, visit ITV Football.

Newcastle City Council bans 'to let' signs in Jesmond

'To let' signs in Jesmond

Newcastle City Council has banned 'to let' boards across the student areas of Jesmond, Heaton and Gosforth.

The ban is after years of complaints from residents who say it lowers the quality of the area and claim the signs affect house prices.

From January, any landlord or letting agent displaying boards without permission could face fines of up to £2,500.

Working with horses 'helps build communication skills'

Sarah Shearman, a renowned horse whisperer who runs a riding school in North Yorkshire is helping Japanese students to better their communication skills through working with animals.

The riding centre is run by mother and daughter, Sandra Kreutzer-Brett and Sarah Shearman, who are experts in reading the body language of horses and their riders.

Sarah says working with the animals can help build their confidence and self-esteem.

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