Sunday, 21 November 2010

Another hit to health reform.

It's been nearly a week without a post, many apologies for that, it's not that I've been particularly busy but just that I didn't feel like posting. So for the return I thought it's time to revisit my old favourite subject... How much of an idiot Andrew Lansley is and his attempts to break down the NHS.

You probably won't have noticed it in the news, (good news about the NHS never seems to be given a lot of airtime or print space) but yet again the NHS has been found to be one of the best health care systems in the world. This time for its access to healthcare and in terms of efficiency. You'd never believe it from all the hype you hear about over-paid executives from the right-wing press, but yes, the NHS is one of the most efficient systems with its money.

So, after news like that you'd expect maybe a well done for all the hard work from the health secretary right? Maybe a little pride in one of the nations favourite and best-performing institutions? No sir, not from Andrew Lansley. All you got from him was moaning about how bad the NHS performed in other areas (with some very dubious claims) and an insistence that only his reforms could help mend the system. I really don't get why this man is in charge of something he clearly loathes.

No-one ever claimed the NHS is perfect, because no health care system in the world is perfect. But to just brush off any praise and insist on focussing purely on negatives is a ridiculous stance for a man in charge of our health.

And now onto the latest in a long series of high profile criticisms of his planned reforms, which I've previously wrote about not once, or even twice, but a fair few times now. (I can't help it if people keep adding their names to the 'Andrew Lansley is an idiot' fan club)

The new head of the Royal College of GPs, a distinguished doctor who has helped massively improve health in deprived areas, has herself come out against the reforms, saying (amongst other more detailed criticisms) that:

"I think it is the end of the NHS as we currently know it, which is a national, unified health service, with central policies and central planning, in the way that (Aneurin) Bevan imagined."

Bearing in mind that his plans are supposed to be about giving GPs the power they so desperately crave to help patients without the interference of 'evil' PCTs, isn't a bit bizarre to Lansley that the RCGP and its leader have both now come out with damning attacks? What will it take for him to see that he is in fact a lunatic with a plan that no-one wants?

There is negligible support within the health care profession for these reforms. The fact that Lansley promised no more 'top-down reorganisations' seems to have been lost in the carnage of the multitude of other broken coalition promises, with Lansley's plans being the mother of all top-down reorganisations. It could cost over £3bn on a risky reorganisation at a time when the NHS is being told to save money, it makes no sense whatsoever.

It makes me sad that someone so stupid can be in such a position of power over something the country and I love so much. If Cameron has even one brain cell to share out amongst the cabinet, please lend it to Lansley for a while.

Edit: This seriously annoyed me when I read it just after originally posting. The current chief executive has said that any staff who oppose the reorganisation should offer their resignations as they will be a 'drag' on the health service in transition. Absolutely outrageous. I'd suggest the only person who should be offering their resignation any time soon is David Nicholson for such an arrogant statement which shows such disdain for the opinions of those working in the NHS.

He has to go, it's that simple. You cannot insult the personal views of so many of your workforce, suggesting they leave for disagreeing with you and expect to remain in a job.

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