NHS financial crisis
- 0Oct 7, '11 by XB9S GuideI doubt that anyone would disagree that The National Health Service is suffering greatly under the financial pressures that are being placed on organisations. It seems to be in the news every day, hospitals declaring huge deficits and difficulty in meeting the financial requirments being asked of them. Pensions of all public service workers are being targeted which affects the vast majority of workers in healthcare.
Some of the headlines
GP practices offering private treatment options for patients who can no longer get minor surgery on the NHS
NI Nurses have agreed to strike- unheard of previously in the UK !!!!!!
The Royal College of Nursing have said if pension talks fail they will be seeking members opinions about industrial action
The NMC have issued their position on industrial action, reminding us of our professional accountability for patient safety
This has been heavily critisised by Unison, who have said it's a heavy handed message without consultation with the Unions , they issued a press release stating
“We believe the NMC’s impartiality has been seriously compromised. Neither their predecessor organisations, nor other regulators, have ever felt the need to issue such a stark and intimidatory warning when any previous industrial action has been taken.
There are some very difficult times ahead
- 0Oct 13, '11 by skylarkSadly I feel that this is not entirely a political issue, a huge part of the problem lies within the service itself.
Its top-heavy with management, and there are just to many short-sighted decisions being made, I think anyone who has worked int he UK in recent years can think of a hospital that had money spend on updating it, only to be closed within a couple of years. Certainly I can think of 3 straight away where I used to live, and its probably a pattern being repeated across the country.
What exactly do all the "project managers" do?
Apart from command huge salaries, it seems to be that they exist to fix things that ain't broke, and throw money at schemes that don't work.
One example - How many computer systems and new software systems are there in use now? And yet we still don't have joined-up access, between sites and services?
Still have to put stuff onto a CD rom and find a motorbike courier to take it across town.
A&Es still can't access GP records to get info when that lovely patient comes in and describes their meds as "white tablets, four of them, you know the ones . . . "
This is just one trivial example. I could list dozens more, but my point is that no matter how much money is thrown at the NHS by politicians, its bad housekeeping and lack of joined-up thinking is what will destroy it.
- 1Nov 9, '11 by skylarkCutbacks continue to undermine the service and destory morale.
Just this week, one London A&E has been cut back to a 12 hour day, shutting at night, and completely closed from December, and another is likely to close in April.
Does anyone care about the patients?
For those that will continue to turn up at night, not realising it is shut, the delay when searching for another hospital could be disastrous.
Hospitals that are already struggling to meet targets will be even more challenged when trying to absorb the workload of the newly closed A&E, (which btw was the one that they used to divert ambulances to when they were full).
Staff morale is already rockbottom, and just piling the pressure on is unlikely to fix that.
I think the only word that can be used now for the NHS is implode . . . . .
- 0Nov 10, '11 by XB9S GuideQuote from skylarkI've been surprised at the level of discontent on the RCN Facebook page at their response and the fact they are balloting after the day of actionI think the unions have been slow generally. Unison has made a lot of noise but has not been very pro-active in actually negotiating or supporting, and the RCN just seems to make vague "We will represent you" sounds. : (
- 1Nov 10, '11 by skylarkThere are a lot of decisions being made that just dont make sense.
One London hospital - closing A&E, unable to state if/where they can redeploy the nurses, but STILL advertising vacancies, and also actively recruiting in the Philippines, there are 70 new starters flying across at the start of December.
In Cambridge the first NHS hospital to be completely run by the private sector, I think its Huntingdon / Hinchingbrooke Hospital. Most hospitals have private input, such as hotel services, portering, linen, etc, and this year a lot of minor injury units have been taken over by a group called Care UK, but this is apparently the first hospital to be completely private.
Doesnt look good at all.
- 1Nov 11, '11 by skylarkIt seems that right across the country, A&Es are being divided up, and the minor side is being handed over to Care UK.
There have been problems in that they have a very specific criteria for the patients they will see, and therefore a larger proportion have been shifted to majors unnecessarily. Care UK runs a seperate computer system, so for example anyone requiring bloodwork or xrays has to go to majors, to get a hospital number for their investigations. They also refuse all drunks and also psych patients, which is some areas of London is a big part of the caseload!!
So minors gradually evolves into a GP walk-in centre, unable to manage injuries, and the work for majors piles up. Then after a while someone at the top of the food chain decides there are now too many breaches, the nurses are no good, majors is unsafe, and they close it down.
THen of course the next nearest A&E has to pick up the slack, then their breach numbers go up as they cannot admit to a full hospital, and there is nowhere to divert to. So they get investigated for the breaches, Care Uk gets brought in to "help", and so it starts over . . . . .
Maybe I'm a conspiracy theorist, but I'm seeing this pattern being repeated, and I'm wondering what its all about.