The Crisis Unfolds
The Crisis Unfolds
(Four years and eight months in the making but eventually the system collapses and it was all avoidable)
- A consultant relating to healthcare, care services, complex needs, rehabilitation, and disability issues such as living in the community, support services, accessible communities, social model of disability application, etc.;
- An owner of a care company that delivered services to many hundreds of people, employing thousands of staff across the North of England, delivering everything from basic care to people so that they could remain in their own homes, all the way to the other end of the spectrum of people needing dedicated nursing due to complex needs, all of which kept people out of hospital;
- Part of this organisational structure was to also have specialist nursing service in the community, allowing families to have back home the most significantly brain injured people who were left in a minimal conscious state, freeing up beds in the NHS;
- I have overseen the development of health care in prisons and secure units, reaching the dizzy heights of being a Governor 1 grade;
- I am a nurse and have been since the mid 1980’s although I no longer nurse as my career took a different direction as you can see, but my wonderful wife remains a dedicated member of the NHS as a nurse that has served thirty years in this capacity;
- I have a degenerative condition that has meant I have become a user of the NHS, healthcare, support services and community care;
So when I speak of the NHS and of social care, I speak with experience and some authority, far more that anyone in the Government’s Cabinet! I have a right to speak out, I have a duty to speak out, I have a professional opinion.
I watched yesterday the playground that is our televised Prime Minister’s Questions, and I am sick of the repeated defence that our NHS has more money, has more Doctors, has more Nurses, and has more beds, blah, blah, blah…. The Prime Minister and that useless Hunt failed to mention is that they have cut salaries in the NHS, demoralised the services, put so much pressure on the wonderful staff of the NHS that the system is on its knees. If someone gives you zero percent pay rise for the last four years, yet the Parliamentary privileged few cream off another twenty percent in basic pay rises for the last two years, how would you feel? Well that’s the truth relating to NHS employees and the illustrious Members of Parliament, and their bloody expenses have NEVER been higher, including seeing a doubling of the Champaign bill since 2010. Would you rather the NHS employees got the twenty percent or MPs, MPs that in many cases can’t even turn up to the debates? It is a valid question, as it should be one rule for all, but let’s not get onto the question of the Conservatives drive for equality that has poured petrol onto the fire of inequality.
The PM also failed to mention that the recently released figures sparking this debate on the NHS, in which we could all see plain and simple that this is the worst statistics for Accident and Emergency for ten years. But let us look at what was said by the PM a little closer:
“We have saved four point nine billion pounds and reduced the number of managers in the NHS” – but I thought you had made no cuts to the NHS, what you did do is reduce budgets to reflect this saving and ring fence the NHS budget since you came to power! So in reality the level of funding has reduced as all prices have gone up! Do you think heating costs have gone down for households across the UK? Well of course they haven’t, in real terms they have on average gone up by forty percent, apply this to the NHS and the need to heat wards, waiting rooms, GP surgery’s, operating theatres, etc. The increased bill is measured in billions (let’s not get onto the fact that petrol prices are down due to a halving in oil prices but yet the Energy Parasitic Companies haven’t cut their prices – exploiters and abusers making people choose between heating and food in far too many cases).
“How dare Labour use the NHS as a political football”, yet for four years and eight months the Coalition has constantly criticised Labour’s management of the NHS. The reality is, Cameron you jerk, that every political party uses the NHS in a political sense. It is this Government’s policies, this Tory led Coalition of calamity, that have brought us to this sorry state where senior Doctors are saying the NHS is close to collapse.
“We have a plan in place and need to stick to the plan” (both Cameron and Hunt have said this in the last forty-eight hours), and it is obvious to all that the plan is the same the Coalition (these Tories and Limp Dem enablers, who are paid by us to maintain our Welfare State of which the NHS is a part of) have used on other public services. We have seen the “plan” clearly used again and again:
- Step 1: Starve the Service of money so it can’t even keep up with price hikes in basics such as fuel/heating;
- Step 2: Demoralise the employees by, for example, not giving them a pay rise;
- Step 3: Cut back on specialist services so the organisation loses this expertise built up over some sixty years of the NHS;
- Step 4: Blame the opposition for the actions the Coalition is taking;
- Step 5: Really increase the pressure by closing possible solutions, help that eases the stresses of a system starting to fail;
- Step 6: During the above steps flood the media, via the positive relationships you have with the Newspaper Barons (probably because of failing to implement any real recommendation of the hugely expensive Leveson’s Enquiry), with stories of horror stories revolving round the same two themes. First the organisation’s in a crisis and unable to cope. Second, that it’s all the fault of Labour.
- Step 7: Privatise parts of the organisation, the Public/Statutory service, OUR services, and make sure the contracts go to the very people bankrolling the Tory party. But tell the public we can get better value and better services with the efficiencies the private sector can offer. As a professional who has run private and public healthcare services, I know this is complete shite, the private sector cannot offer better services than the NHS. Corporations have one duty and that is to make money. In the case of healthcare the Tories and their corporate mates have effectively privatised illness, put a value on suffering, making money from sickness – IT IS SHAMEFUL!
- Step 8: In the specific case of the NHS there is a further step, if the Tories (aided by their enablers the lying Limp Dems) win the next election (not that they won the last one General Election). This step will be to speed up the privatisation of the Welfare State, NHS, Ambulance Service, GP’s, driving this Country’s healthcare into the American model, including the introduction of compulsory private health insurance – we are half way their already! Why else would they put in charge of the NHS an experienced healthcare manager, experienced derived not from the NHS but from the American model of private healthcare, driven by insurance companies, who are waiting in the wings to make billions from us.
But would they really do this to the NHS? Yes they would and Yes they are doing exactly what I have said, mainly because it makes millionaires into billionaires; it makes the venture capitalists more money than I could even dream of, trillions over the next generation who will grow up and just read about the NHS as a nice social experiment that was ended by the Tories after 60 years of dedicated care by some of the most wonderful healthcare staff in the world. But before I end and leave you with your own thoughts on whether you want an NHS or not, let’s just look quickly at why we are at crisis in Accident and Emergency Departments across the UK:
- Labour started this to be honest by foolishly renegotiating the GPs’ contracts and allowing them to step away from out-of-hours services. The patients lost all confidence in the new out-of-hours services after some terrible mistakes were made and splashed over the media. Yet this negatively was allowed to worsen, allowed to become engrained and people just don’t trust out-of-hours GP cover any more. So they look for other trusted services when in pain and afraid, and that is the A&E services. This could have been coped with but then the Coalition, the thieves of our State’s services took over with an agenda as I have detailed above;
- Then the Coalition decided that the best thing they can do is to close the walk-in centres that were taking some of the pressure off the NHS (created as a pressure valve in response to the peoples’ lack of trust in GP out-of-hours cover). Strange that, you would have thought the Coalition would have expanded walk-in centres to help ease the burden on the NHS, as they claim their “plan” will do. The only reason to shut walk-in centres was to make A&E crumble, the money saved by these closures doesn’t even cover the bill for increased agency cover needed as more and more Doctors and Nurses crumble under the pressure;
- In combination with this cut in available services, the Coalition reduce the Local Councils’ budgets by over thirty percent in real terms, in some cases (all of which are Labour controlled Councils funnily enough) by as much as forty percent. The amount of money available for care in the community and community services has equally been cut and therefore the hospitals are struggling to discharge people, there just isn’t the money out there to support people post hospital, so they can’t be discharged;
- Another fact that is not readily admitted, whilst they stay in hospital they are funded by the NHS, when they are discharge the majority of the time they are funded by the Council, so it is cheaper for the Council to say there isn’t the facility to support person ‘X’ post discharge;
- As part of this evidence there are three hundred thousand less people supported by services than in 2010, this is because service are effectively being rationed, so where are you going to discharge patients to, the beds remain blocked and A&E can’t admit people they need to as there are no spaces;
- This is in the context of the Coalition have openly said they have only made forty percent of the cuts needed, and Councils will bear the brunt of the next phase of cuts – God help us all;
- The Coalition openly lie about the number of beds, saying there are more now than ever before, it’s just not true. Where do you think the most admission to acute psychiatric inpatients comes from? Yep, they come from A&E, but the number of Acute Psychiatric beds has gone down by forty percent across the UK, and secure units places have been cut by over fifty percent. So people needing places within the psychiatric side of the NHS are having to be placed, in some cases, a hundred and sixty miles away from their family. There have been times over the past four years when there have been no beds available at all in psychiatric services, so nowhere to discharge people from A&E to;
This is utterly, totally, completely unacceptable and just stop lying to us, we are not stupid, we do know the truth, we are the people having to cope with the degradation of NHS services under the Tories, actively supported by their lapdogs the Limp Dems. For what they have done to the Welfare State and in particular the NHS I genuinely hope they rot in political obscurity, forever labelled in history as the Coalition that in four years wrecked what was started by the social visionaries Bevan and Attlee.
Sixty years in the making and on the verge of collapsing because of monetary greed, just basic greed! If you want the NHS to be saved you have a clear choice:
DON’T vote for the Tories;
DON’T vote for their lapdogs the lying Limp Dems;
Yours most sincerely
Smiling Cat Ventures (www.smilingcatventures.org)
Face Book: Disability in Business (www.facebook.com/DisabilityInBusiness)
Linked-In: Jonathan Wade (Innovative Minds at Work) (www.linkedin.com)