Skip to main content

Broken pledges and the crisis in the NHS

There was the fanfare, not exactly trumpets, but soothing, calming, reassuring...reassuring. The date is Monday January 4th 2010. A week is a long time in politics, three years is an age, so we may not remember; and if we do we may be inclined to ask so what, who believed them anyway?

It was the day Mr Cameron, launched the Tory party's draft manifesto for the NHS. It was that speech in which the then Leader of the Opposition pledged there would be no top down reorganisation of the NHS. It  was also a speech in which he said the Tories would not make the sick pay for the debt crisis.

Three years on we have major top down reorganisation, £20 billion cuts in NHS funding through 'efficiency savings' which all health bodies including the BMA say have pushed the NHS to a crisis point. NHS England inform us that unless funding levels are increased the NHS in England is heading for a shortfall of £30 billion by 2020. That translates into real cuts that will affect the ability of the NHS to meet patients needs.

In making his pledge David Cameron said that "With the Conservatives there will be no more of the tiresome, meddlesome, top-down re-structures that have dominated the last decade of the NHS." This pledge was reiterated as part of the Coalition agreement.  The Liberal Democrats and the Tories have reneged on this pledge; they have failed to listen to the concerns of leading bodies representing health care professionals; they have failed to listen to the concerns of patient bodies.

Privatised provision has created a problem for commissioning bodies with many serving on the new bodies being potentially compromised through pecuniary interest. This problem is of great concern to the doctors organisation the British Medical Association. The potential for diverting funds from 'in-house' services provided by the NHS is also a concern leading to more private provision as the in-house service is allowed to deteriorate. 

It is no surprise that coupled with creeping privatisation of provision the issue of payment at the point of delivery is brought into question for initially some services. The divisive question is raised, why should the taxpayer pay for your therapy, hearing aids, or whatever it is? It is the same kind of divisive question applied to the changes in welfare provision. The attack on universal benefits turns to an attack on universal health care provision. Let's not say we cannot heed the warning signs. 

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Prioritising people in nursing care.

There has been in recent years concern that care in the NHS has not been sufficiently 'patient centred', or responsive to the needs of the patient on a case basis. It has been felt in care that it as been the patient who has had to adapt to the regime of care, rather than the other way around. Putting patients at the centre of care means being responsive to their needs and supporting them through the process of health care delivery.  Patients should not become identikit sausages in a production line. The nurses body, the Nursing and Midwifery Council has responded to this challenge with a revised code of practice reflection get changes in health and social care since the previous code was published in 2008. The Code describes the professional standards of practice and behaviour for nurses and midwives. Four themes describe what nurses and midwives are expected to do: prioritise people practise effectively preserve safety, and promote professionalism and trust. The

The internet trails of Ants

Ants share, and they are built to do just that.  They walk and talk to cooperate in all they do.  Ants have two stomachs, with the second one set aside for storing food to be shared with other ants.  Ants get pretty intimate when meeting each other.  The ants kiss, but this kiss isn't any ordinary kind of kiss. Instead, they regurgitate food and exchange it with one another.  By sharing saliva and food,  ants communicate.  Each ant colony has a unique smell, so members recognize each other and sniff out intruders. In addition, all ants can produce pheromones, which are scent chemicals used for communication and to make trails. Ants are problem solvers.  We may recall the problems puzzles we were given as children. We look to see if the pieces will fit.  Jiz saw puzzles are much the same but with many contextual factors. First, the picture tells a story. Then, once we know what the image might be, it becomes easier to see which pieces to look for.  Ants lay down trails. Just as we f

The Thin End account of COVID Lockdown