Skip to main content

Tory promises on NHS meaningless.



Some years ago now Prime Minister David Cameron assured voters that the NHS was 'safe' in Tory hands.  It was in 2006 in his speech bringing to end the Tory Party conference that year.  And here is the irony.  Not only did he say it would be safe in his hands but he also said this:

"When your family relies on the NHS all of the time - day after day, night after night - you know how precious it is.

"So, for me, it is not just a question of saying the NHS is safe in my hands - of course it will be. My family is so often in the hands of the NHS, so I want them to be safe there."

And then he promised this: "no more pointless and disruptive reorganisations". Instead, change would be "driven by the wishes and needs of NHS professionals and patients".

Fast forward to 2015 and his governments have imposed a pointless and disruptive reorganisation of the NHS and starved it of funding.  They have brought the NHS to crisis and with junior doctors hitting the streets in demonstrations. 

The crisis has been brought home by the revelation today that NHS trusts in England have accumulated almost £1 bn of deficit in just three months of the financial year.   The NHS is almost on its knees and on course for an annual deficit of £2 bn and the impact on the ground is devastating with  waiting time targets missed.  

Meanwhile the consequences of falling morale and difficulty in staffing levels has led to a soaring bill for agency and other temporary employees.

Today the BMA, the doctor's representative body has issued a stark warning that the NHS faces a crisis 'the like of which we have never seen' and highlighted the £22 bn funding gap and warned of the potential for a winter crisis stretching beyond that  with which the NHS is now able to cope.  

Dr Ian Wilson, BMA representative body chair, said:

“Despite what politicians claim, NHS funding has not kept up with rising patient demand and the increased cost of delivering care. The extra funding promised by the government is barely enough for the NHS to stand still. The result is a health service that is bucking at the seams, relying on emergency bailouts and with no real solution to the £22bn funding gap facing it.

“With winter just around the corner, there is a real risk to the quality of patient care as pressure on services and staff will only intensify.

“The government must wake up and take action. The NHS is renowned as the most efficient health service in the world1, but it cannot continue to do more with less. We need a long-term funding plan rather than a short-term fixes in order to secure the future of the NHS and stop it from lurching from one crisis to another.”

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Ian Duncan-Smith says he wants to make those on benefits 'better people'!

By any account, the government's austerity strategy is utilitarian. It justifies its approach by the presumed potential ends. It's objective is to cut the deficit, but it has also adopted another objective which is specifically targeted. It seeks to drive people off benefits and 'back to work'.  The two together are toxic to the poorest in society. Those least able to cope are the most affected by the cuts in benefits and the loss of services. It is the coupling of these two strategic aims that make their policies ethically questionable. For, by combining the two, slashing the value of benefits to make budget savings while also changing the benefits system, the highest burden falls on a specific group, those dependent on benefits. For the greater good of the majority, a minority group, those on benefits, are being sacrificed; sacrificed on the altar of austerity. And they are being sacrificed in part so that others may be spared. Utilitarian ethics considers the ba

The secret life of Giant Pandas

Giant pandas, Ailuropoda melanoleuca , have usually been regarded as solitary creatures, coming together only to mate; but recent studies have begun to reveal a secret social life for these enigmatic bears.  GPS tracking shows they cross each others path more often than previously thought, and spend time together.  What we don't know is what they are doing when together.  Photo by  Sid Balachandran  on  Unsplash For such large mammals, pandas have relatively small home ranges. Perhaps this is no surprise. Pandas feed almost exclusively on bamboo. The only real threat to pandas has come from humans. No wonder then that the panda is the symbol of the WWF.  Pandas communicate with one another through vocalization and scent marking. They spray urine, claw tree trunks and rub against objects to mark their paths, yet they do not appear to be territorial as individuals.  Pandas are 99% vegetarian, but, oddly, their digestive system is more typical of a carnivore. For the 1% of their diet

Work Capability Assessments cause suffering for the mentally ill

People suffering from mental health problems are often the most vulnerable when seeking help. Mental health can have a major impact on work, housing, relationships and finances. The Work Capability Assessments (WCA) thus present a particular challenge to those suffering mental illness.  The mentally ill also are often the least able to present their case. Staff involved in assessments lack sufficient expertise or training to understand mental health issues and how they affect capability. Because of  concerns that Work Capability Assessments will have a particularly detrimental effect on the mentally ill,  an  e-petition  on the government web site calls on the Department of Work and Pensions to exclude people with complex mental health problems such as paranoid schizophrenia and personality disorders. Problems with the WCA  have been highlighted in general by the fact that up to 78% of 'fit to work' decisions are  being overturned on appeal. It is all to the good that they