The NHS Thread

rynner2

Great Old One
Joined
Aug 7, 2001
Messages
55,273
Likes
8,878
Points
284
Location
Under the moon
#1
There are always NHS stories coming along. A punchy one here for starters:
Nurses' leader: Blair's spin ruining NHS
By Laura Donnelly, Health Correspondent, Sunday Telegraph
Last Updated: 11:56pm BST 07/04/2007

The Prime Minister has allowed the NHS to plunge into crisis by becoming trapped in a "parallel universe of spin", according to the new head of the Royal College of Nursing.

In a blistering attack on the Government's running of the health service, Dr Peter Carter, the RCN general secretary, said cuts in jobs, services and training were catastrophic for the country and a "personal tragedy" for the Prime Minister.

Dr Carter, who will address his first RCN annual conference next week, said Tony Blair should admit Labour's administration of the NHS had gone "fundamentally wrong". He said Labour's track record on the health service was far worse than that of the Conservatives, even though Mr Blair had poured in record funds.

Dr Carter, a former hospital trust chief executive, told The Sunday Telegraph: "I have never seen so much money go into the health service and I have never seen so much money wasted.

"It is a tragedy. It must be a personal tragedy for Tony Blair. In the recesses of his mind, he must be saying: 'What the hell has gone wrong?'


"In the 1980s and '90s finance was extremely tight but you did not get the crisis we have seen in the last two years. Nurses are saying to us 'we ain't going to vote Labour'. They aren't saying who they will vote for, but it will be interesting to see what happens in the Scottish, Welsh and local elections."

He urged Mr Blair to "stop getting caught up in spin and a parallel universe, which only looks at the success stories, and acknowledge that this has gone fundamentally wrong".

A year ago, Patricia Hewitt, the Health Secretary, was forced to abandon her speech to the RCN congress after heckling and slow hand-claps from nurses angered by her opening claim that the NHS was enjoying its "best year ever".

Dr Carter said the college - which handed out placards to the nurses - was "not that smart" in the way it managed the event, although he insisted much of the anger was spontaneous. Describing Mrs Hewitt's comments as "very ill-advised", he said career politicians needed to be better briefed by senior civil servants, instead of relying on "here today, gone tomorrow policies".

This year, the RCN has not invited politicians from any party to take the stage. Dr Carter said the organisation was not prepared to be "duped", either by attempts from the Government to justify itself, or by promises from the opposition.

But he said he would welcome Gordon Brown, the Chancellor and probable successor to Mr Blair, if he increased the below-inflation pay deal for nurses now on offer. "I don't think I am going to get that call," he said.

Dr Carter said the college was "demoralised and disgusted" by the 2.5 per cent offer, which is staged so nurses get 1.9 per cent over the year. The RCN is consulting its members over its response.

However, he said job fears at the moment made it difficult for nurses to contemplate industrial action. Dr Carter said the waste under Labour began with the reorganisation of the NHS soon after the party gained power.

Millions were wasted on repeated changes to structures that had now almost reverted back to the position they were in 10 years ago, with money lavished on salaries, redundancies and creating offices.

Worse still, the replacement of 100 health authorities with more than 300 primary care trusts created more jobs than there were talented managers, leading to poor decision-making and a "frittering away of much of the Government's investment".


Government figures show 15,000 managers have been recruited since Labour came to power. Dr Carter, who ran an NHS mental health trust in London for 12 years, said he believed one manager in five was not up to the job, while about the same proportion of NHS organisations were not fit for purpose.

The number of nurses emigrating to find work had doubled to 8,000 since Labour came to power in 1997, and the number will continue to grow, he said.

The Government expects that Britain will be short of 14,000 nurses in three years' time, which will force the UK to poach replacements from some of the poorest parts of the world, Dr Carter said. Have your say on Labour's management of the NHS
http://tinyurl.com/2sa4x8
 

zarathustraspake

Ephemeral Spectre
Joined
Dec 15, 2005
Messages
339
Likes
0
Points
32
#2
I'll be qualifying as a mental health nurse this Autumn.

The jobs situation doesn't seem to be as bad in mental health as it is in general nursing, and I already have a job lined up for after I qualify (though in the private sector, not the NHS). But things don't look good for those about to qualify as registered general nurses.

I recently spent a training day with my final year counterparts in general nursing, and they all looked suicidal. They were all really worried about whether they'll get a job or not. I'm told the situation is even worse for those about to qualify as childrens nurses.

Sickening really. Imagine the cost to the taxpayer of three years spent training a nurse. Not to mention the heavy personal cost to that individual (personal stress, financial hardship while living on a pittance bursary for three years, debts accumulated), only for that person not to be able to work as a nurse when they qualify.

Hospital wards are crying out for more nurses, and the trusts can't recruit them because they're in deficit and don't have the money to hire new nurses. This does affect patients, because the lower the ratio of nurses to patients, the more likely the patients are to be at risk, and the more their nursing care suffers. That's when you start getting angry headlines about patients developing huge pressure sores because they haven't been turned, or becoming malnourished because nurses aren't paying sufficient attention to people who have difficulty eating.
 

OneWingedBird

Beloved of Ra
Joined
Aug 3, 2003
Messages
15,532
Likes
6,356
Points
284
#3
is mental health nursing really that much better?... i know strange things have happened in leeds with mental health support... a friend who's training as a psychiatric social worker says there's now no beds left in the city for voluntary admissions or pre-emptive admissions, and even people being sectioned are being released early to make space...

...the only things i've seen money spent on here, in that area, are the brand spanking new psych unit that's since been turned over to geriatric care, and the day hospital i attend got a nice new reception area built... before they sacked the receptionist... :?
 

zarathustraspake

Ephemeral Spectre
Joined
Dec 15, 2005
Messages
339
Likes
0
Points
32
#4
BlackRiverFalls said:
is mental health nursing really that much better?... i know strange things have happened in leeds with mental health support... a friend who's training as a psychiatric social worker says there's now no beds left in the city for voluntary admissions or pre-emptive admissions, and even people being sectioned are being released early to make space...
Things are better in mental health in terms of job availability for nurses, but psychiatric inpatient beds are at a distinct shortage across the NHS, with the result that the bulk of admissions are people who've been sectioned.

On the plus side, there's increasing availability of community-based mental health services such as Crisis Resolution Teams. These are what's described as a "ward on wheels" with psychiatrists, nurses, support workers etc driving around from patient to patient, assessing and treating people in their own homes.

Those sorts of services are useful for people who are having a short-term crisis such as a psychotic episode, but aren't actively being a risk to themselves or others, so can have their illness managed at home rather than going into hospital. Obviously the downside of such a service is that staff can't be around 24 hours a day.

I think overall we're moving towards a type of service where the kind of people who might have been in hospital voluntarily would now be treated by the Crisis Resolution Teams at home, with the remaining inpatient beds being reserved for those who really do need 24 hour support. But services remain patchy, and it's hard to expand them when the NHS deficits are biting.
 

OneWingedBird

Beloved of Ra
Joined
Aug 3, 2003
Messages
15,532
Likes
6,356
Points
284
#5
yeah, the crisis resolution teams are quite good for some things, had them visiting me for a few days the christmas before last after i went a bit mental and tried to turn myself in for being a serial killer :? my friend isn't that impressed with them though, as he feels they're being used too for people who would be better off in hospital... but as you say, beds are hard to come by these days...
 

mindalai

Abominable Snowman
Joined
Aug 27, 2005
Messages
798
Likes
22
Points
34
#6
It's all so short-sighted. Many student nurses I know that have just qualified or are about to qualify have zero chance of getting a job in the foreseeable future in this area, yet wards are chronically short staffed and are making up the shortfall by paying existing nurses to do agency shifts. It doesn't take much thought to see how pointless that is - paying nurses more money to do the same work when they're already tired out from working full time, while there's loads of highly educated nurses just desperate to get some experience. A lot of them will leave nursing or go and work in America and Australia and in a few years when something like 5-10% of the current workforce retires there'll be nobody to take their places. And the pay cut (dressed up as a below-inflation pay rise) that nurses are getting this year won't be helping matters. The NHS already relies on the goodwill of nurses (trust me, it would fall to bits if we all started working to rule) and undermining them like this is going to be disastrous.

*gets off soapbox*
 

Quake42

Warrior Princess
Joined
Feb 25, 2004
Messages
9,310
Likes
3,757
Points
219
#7
It's hard to understand what's going on... an acquaintance who is a junior doctor had terrible problems finding anywhere to work in London when her contract ran out. Her friends had the same problems and some went overseas. She ended up in a hospital in Oxford the redevelopment of which neglected to include anywhere for doctors to sit or even to hang their coats :roll:

At the same time doctors and other health professionals are being snapped up by city consultancy firms to work on large consulting projects for the NHS at several times the salary they could have expected if they had stayed in practice.

It's INSANE and it coincides with vast sums of money being poured into the NHS. Something is going very, very wrong.
 
A

Anonymous

Guest
#8
The 'government' want rid of the NHS. Private health care only. The plebs can fend for themselves. Society is being divided - even more. Viva La revolution.
 

OneWingedBird

Beloved of Ra
Joined
Aug 3, 2003
Messages
15,532
Likes
6,356
Points
284
#10
It's INSANE and it coincides with vast sums of money being poured into the NHS. Something is going very, very wrong.
i'm still curious about the income leeds primary care trust must have got from selling off High Royds to property developers... a mansion sized victorian listed building in 400acres of grounds... don't know how much they got for it, but the money certainly doesn't seem to have been pumped back into mental health care...
 

zarathustraspake

Ephemeral Spectre
Joined
Dec 15, 2005
Messages
339
Likes
0
Points
32
#11
mindalai said:
An article about mental health nursing from today's Observer: http://observer.guardian.co.uk/focus/st ... 54,00.html
Interesting article. One thing that comes across from the description of that acute unit is that it's suffering from a problem that's affecting acute psych wards across the NHS.

Although I think the introduction of Crisis Resolution Teams is overall a good thing, it means that with more mentally ill people having their crises managed in the community, that changes the mix of people who do get admitted to an acute ward. Essentially it means that those admitted are the illest of the ill, the maddest of the mad. That makes the ward more difficult to manage, let alone do anything therapeutic.

What needs to happen is for the ratio of nurses to patients to be increased on the acute wards, so that they can become safer and more therapeutic. At the moment I haven't seen much signs of that happening.
 

mindalai

Abominable Snowman
Joined
Aug 27, 2005
Messages
798
Likes
22
Points
34
#12
I think it'll be a long time before we see nurse/patient ratios improved anywhere thanks to the government obsession of making financial targets a priority over actual results or patient safety. I don't know much about mental health nursing but in acute medical nursing (where I work at least) the nurse:patient ratio is frequently 1:14, which is clearly inadequate.
 

ElishevaBarsabe

Abominable Snowman
Joined
Mar 19, 2002
Messages
792
Likes
31
Points
49
#13
Frobush said:
The 'government' want rid of the NHS. Private health care only. The plebs can fend for themselves.
I hope you all don't go back to the private health care model; that's where we are in the U.S., and it's dreadful. Were emergency care not legislated, we'd have the uninsured people dying in the streets (which was the case for a while). As it is now, the uninsured must go to emergency care for anything, which causes financial havoc for hospitals some of which are closing due to this problem.
 

escargot

Beloved of Ra
Joined
Aug 24, 2001
Messages
24,476
Likes
18,527
Points
309
#14
Yup. I am quite ridiculously proud of the NHS.

My parents are of an age where they can remember their parents having to think hard about taking a child to the doctor, because it was the 1930s and work was irregular. Feeding a family was hard enough without another bill on top. :(

The NHS sent me to college on a placement so I could get proper qualifications, after I'd had to leave school without them. 8)
 

beakboo

Abominable Snowman
Joined
Aug 14, 2006
Messages
637
Likes
28
Points
34
#15
I imagine a lot of families still have to think hard about going to the doctor now. A prescription costs more than a bottle of wine. :(
 

rynner2

Great Old One
Joined
Aug 7, 2001
Messages
55,273
Likes
8,878
Points
284
Location
Under the moon
#16
beakboo said:
I imagine a lot of families still have to think hard about going to the doctor now. A prescription costs more than a bottle of wine. :(
And doctors are getting more proactive about checking up on your health (especially as you get older).

You go in with a simple sore throat, say, and next thing you know they want samples of five bodily fluids, an ECG, blood pressure, a sonar scan, and probably a whole body MRI scan just to be safe! :shock:

I know I'm gonna die sometime - I just don't want the doc putting odds on it, like some macabre bookie!

I think I might stick to a few simples from the local wise woman in future - seeing the doc is just too stressful! The good ol' days of "Take an aspirin and get some rest" are long gone under current GP guidelines and regulations. :evil:
 

Hot_Cross_Nun

Devoted Cultist
Joined
Nov 28, 2003
Messages
161
Likes
7
Points
34
#17
beakboo:
I imagine a lot of families still have to think hard about going to the doctor now. A prescription costs more than a bottle of wine. Sad
Yes, and that's bad. But not any more, if you live in Wales.

See http://www.wales.nhs.uk/page.cfm?pid=9586 , for example.
As from April 1st 2007 the NHS prescription charge in Wales will be abolished for people in Wales.
I really wish the Welsh Assembly will turn their sights on NHS dentistry next. The dentist treats my kids under the NHS scheme. So long as I stick very strictly to his check up regime. Plus they haven't needed any fillings yet (or anything expensive) due to Mr HCN or me standing over them morning and night making sure they brush their teeth, probably. Plus maybe we've been lucky. I do wonder if his attitude would be the same if they needed something expensive done.

But me - no. I was accepted originally as an NHS dental patient. But last year he changed his rules and now, if I want dental treatment, as far as I understand, I would have to pay £10 - £20+ each month in dental insurance. This covers something like two check-ups per annum, plus two fillings and provision for certain other treatment, depending on the level of cover you've purchased.

I refuse to spend £120+ per annum on two check-ups per year. My teeth haven't needed any treatment in the past 12 years. Apart from having my two top front teeth crowned - my natural teeth were chipped and uneven - a case of purely cosmetic dentistry which cost me a few hundred quid. I did not mind paying privately for this because the work had nothing to do with my health - it was vanity, and I saved up to have it done.

Can't you just ask to pay for whatever treatment you do actually need, when you need it, rather than paying to a regular plan? I haven't been bothered to ask him yet, because I've had no need to. I wouldn't mind that - pay as you go. It's the "insurance" I object to, the "pay every month for something you may not need" aspect. It feels to me like a rip-off.
 

escargot

Beloved of Ra
Joined
Aug 24, 2001
Messages
24,476
Likes
18,527
Points
309
#18
Prescription are not paid for by under-18s though so at least children can have consultations and meds free. That wasn't the case before the NHS.
 

Quake42

Warrior Princess
Joined
Feb 25, 2004
Messages
9,310
Likes
3,757
Points
219
#19
I refuse to spend £120+ per annum on two check-ups per year. My teeth haven't needed any treatment in the past 12 years. Apart from having my two top front teeth crowned - my natural teeth were chipped and uneven - a case of purely cosmetic dentistry which cost me a few hundred quid. I did not mind paying privately for this because the work had nothing to do with my health - it was vanity, and I saved up to have it done.

Can't you just ask to pay for whatever treatment you do actually need, when you need it, rather than paying to a regular plan? I haven't been bothered to ask him yet, because I've had no need to. I wouldn't mind that - pay as you go. It's the "insurance" I object to, the "pay every month for something you may not need" aspect. It feels to me like a rip-off.
Agreed. I'm currently not registered with a dentist for this very reason. My employer has an in-house dentist which I can see if I need treatment and just pay for that.

I've got strong teeth and don't even have any fillings and £120 a year for someone to poke around in my mouth for five minutes and say I'm fine seems ridiculous.

I'm not sure what can be done though... in the last 10-15 years dentists' earnings have skyrocketed and I don't think many of them will want to go back to NHS rates.
 

rynner2

Great Old One
Joined
Aug 7, 2001
Messages
55,273
Likes
8,878
Points
284
Location
Under the moon
#20
Hospital denies 'cover up' claim

A hospital in Cornwall has denied it tried to cover up the fact a patient had died from Clostridium Difficile.
The allegation was made by the widow of a man who contracted the bacterium at the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro.

Jim Roan, 50, was being treated for prostate cancer and pneumonia but his wife Jill said the death certificate mentioned only the prostate cancer.

A second certificate was issued, but the hospital has insisted the correct procedures were followed.

It has offered a verbal apology to the family for not properly explaining the situation.

Mrs Roan said when she questioned the cause of death on the original certificate the hospital contacted the coroner, who ordered a post-mortem examination.

An independent pathologist confirmed C. difficile as the main cause of death.

Mrs Roan believes the hospital was trying to mask the role of the infection.

She told BBC News: "As far as we're concerned, not only did Jim pick up C. difficile from the hospital while he was there, but it was this horrific cover up job and the hospital won't admit to anything."

Mr Roan, who was a chef, was told by an oncologist in 2005 that his condition was terminal and he had about two to three years to live.

"We accepted that," Mrs Road said. "But that's not what killed him - it was the C. diff and the hospital knew that.

"I don't even know who signed the first certificate because the hospital won't tell us anything."

Legal advice

Mrs Roan said she is seeking legal advice.

But the Royal Cornwall Hospitals Trust's medical director, Dr Rob Pitcher, said the correct procedures were followed.

He said the initial cause of death was written by a doctor and it had been necessary for a coroner to legally change the document.

"Death certificates are the responsibility of the doctors filling them out and they have to apply their clinical judgement.

"Obviously in this case, there was a discussion with the relatives and they were unhappy with what was on the death certificate.

"It is a legal document and we can't alter it ourselves in the hospital."

The second certificate states C. difficile as the primary cause of death, with pneumonia and the prostate cancer as contributory causes.

Central statistics

Dr Pitcher has offered Mrs Roan and her family an apology for the lack of information.

"I'm really sorry about that. Obviously they haven't had an adequate explanation of what happened around the death and the death certificate."

The trust said all cases of C. difficile have to be reported centrally and form part of the national statistics.

Recent data published by the Health Protection Agency showed about 7,000 inpatients had MRSA infections each year in England, whereas more than 50,000 inpatients aged 65 years and over had C. difficile infections.

The symptoms are usually mild, involving diarrhoea and stomach pains. But in severe cases it can cause inflammation of the bowel which can be life-threatening.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/england/cornwall/6540509.stm
A bit worrying, as this is where I had my recent operation (and I was there again today as an outpatient.)
 

rynner2

Great Old One
Joined
Aug 7, 2001
Messages
55,273
Likes
8,878
Points
284
Location
Under the moon
#21
Disgruntled doctors turn their backs on Labour
By Celia Hall, Medical Editor
Last Updated: 2:15am BST 13/04/2007

Only seven per cent of doctors would vote Labour if an election was called this year, compared to a quarter who voted Labour at the last election in 2005, according to a poll published yesterday.

In a dramatic swing of affiliation, 43 per cent of those questioned said they would vote Conservative in an election this year against 27 per cent in 2005.

Popularity of the Liberal Democrats declined from 20 per cent in 2005 to 15 per cent.

More than 1,440 doctors, mostly working in hospitals, responded to the poll run by Hospital Doctor magazine and the website Medix.

The survey showed that doctors' morale was at an "all time low" under the pressure of reforms, targets, deficits and the failure of a new system for appointing junior doctors to consultant training posts.

Dr Jonathan Fielden, the chairman of the British Medical Association's consultants' committee, said doctors felt they had not been listened to and had become frustrated. "Despite being told their initiatives carried risks and difficulties, the Government has often gone ahead anyway," he said.

When asked, "in whose hands do you believe the NHS would provide the best service", only five per cent said Labour under Tony Blair and with Patricia Hewitt as Health Secretary. Thirty per cent opted for the Conservatives under David Cameron with Andrew Lansley in the health job and 11 per cent preferred the Lib Dems under Sir Menzies Campbell with Norman Lamb at health. However, 54 per cent said they were "unsure".

The doctors were also asked, "would the NHS provide a better service under a Gordon Brown-led Government?" Six per cent said yes, 61 per cent said no and 32 per cent were not sure.

Comments were strongly anti-Labour. One said: "The Government doesn't have the first idea how to run a health service. They should leave doctors to get on with it instead of blaming them for their own inadequacies."

Another added: "The NHS has improved a lot under Labour, with shorter waiting times and a more comprehensive service, but I think that it has now lost direction."

Mr Lansley said: "The Labour Party is no longer the party of the NHS.

"Doctors at the heart of our services are not only suffering poor morale but have now lost confidence in Patricia Hewitt and Labour's stewardship of the NHS."

Mr Lamb said: "Under the Conservatives there was chronic under-funding that left the health service in a dire state. The charge against this Government is not under-funding but how the money has been spent."

Andy Burnham, a health minister, responded: "Hospital doctors have seen their NHS salaries grow significantly, they have had their hours of work reduced but they have had to meet targets so that waiting times for patients are reduced."
http://tinyurl.com/2jgwfx
(Table showing details on page.)
 

rynner2

Great Old One
Joined
Aug 7, 2001
Messages
55,273
Likes
8,878
Points
284
Location
Under the moon
#22
The same poll was reported on yesterday in the Guardian, but concentrating on Doctors' morale rather than their voting intentions... ;)
Two-thirds of doctors say that medicine is a bad career choice

John Carvel, social affairs editor
Thursday April 12, 2007
The Guardian

Doctors' morale has sunk to an all-time low, with more than two-thirds saying they would no longer recommend a career in medicine to friends or family, a poll reveals today.
A survey of more than 1,400 GPs and hospital doctors found 69% believe their morale has fallen in the past year. Nearly two-thirds blamed their increased pessimism on the extra workload created by government targets and the NHS reform programme.

Nearly half said they were unhappy about a hospital reorganisation which is switching specialist care to regional centres and passing more routine work to GPs and neighbourhood clinics.

The survey was commissioned by Hospital Doctor magazine and carried out by the medical pollster Medix. It found only 2% of doctors described their level of morale as "excellent", with 54% saying it was "poor" or "terrible". The proportion unwilling to recommend people to join the profession was 69%.

Stephen Campion, chief executive of the Hospital Consultants and Specialists Association, said: "Traditionally, many doctors have followed in their parents' footsteps and increasingly we are hearing doctors saying they wished they hadn't recommended a career in medicine to their children.

"This is indicative of the extreme frustration and low morale hospital doctors are feeling."

The Department of Health said the findings conflicted with the Healthcare Commission's more comprehensive NHS staff survey, which showed 73.3% of medical staff in acute hospitals were generally satisfied.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/uk_news/story ... 22,00.html
Can't seem to find the complete Poll results online, only various newspaper reports.
 

ArthurASCII

Justified & Ancient
Joined
Feb 26, 2002
Messages
1,541
Likes
19
Points
69
#23
Two-thirds of doctors say that medicine is a bad career choice
My heart bleeds for the poor little lambs.

Perhaps they should walk a few miles in the shoes of my daughter, a Health Care Assistant who works for an absolute pittance, and spends much of her time up to her elbows in grief and suffering, cleaning up and caring for the terminally ill (that's when she's not being harassed by arrogant, rude doctors of course).
 

ted_bloody_maul

Justified & Ancient
Joined
May 23, 2003
Messages
4,589
Likes
5
Points
69
#24
I must say I can't muster much sympathy for the doctors. They're tremendously well paid and with regards to their workload, of the GP's at least - I'd have thought they were doing less now that they don't seem to do home visits.
 

Peripart

Antediluvian
Joined
Aug 1, 2005
Messages
5,465
Likes
2,722
Points
219
#25
ArthurASCII said:
Two-thirds of doctors say that medicine is a bad career choice
My heart bleeds for the poor little lambs.

Perhaps they should walk a few miles in the shoes of my daughter, a Health Care Assistant who works for an absolute pittance, and spends much of her time up to her elbows in grief and suffering, cleaning up and caring for the terminally ill (that's when she's not being harassed by arrogant, rude doctors of course).
I second that, Arthur. My partner also works as an HCA, having returned to work after many years away from nursing. She knows (and cares) more than most of the supposedly higher-qualified nurses she works with, many of whom have been imported from countries where, through no fault of their own, the training is frankly not up to our standards.

The pay of an HCA, even in a BUPA hospital, is shamefully close to the legal minimum wage, while doctors and administrators bitch about how tough their lives are. I'll happily concede that doctors have an incredibly tough job, but badly-off there are not.
 

mindalai

Abominable Snowman
Joined
Aug 27, 2005
Messages
798
Likes
22
Points
34
#26
It's not as easy to be a doctor as people think. Unless they're quite senior they really don't get paid that much. A junior doctor gets paid less than a lot of nurses do and they have a huge amount of pressure and responsibility, not to mention verbal and physical abuse on a daily basis. And they're not all arrogant and rude. Some of the nicest, kindest and hardest working people I know are doctors.

I agree that HCAs get far less than they deserve though. A good HCA is worth more than gold. I certainly wouldn't do what they do for the money they get.
 

rynner2

Great Old One
Joined
Aug 7, 2001
Messages
55,273
Likes
8,878
Points
284
Location
Under the moon
#27
Another poll, more bad news:
NHS 'will not be free in future'

The NHS is unlikely to be free at the point of use within 10 years, according to doctors.
A British Medical Association poll of 964 young GPs and hospital doctors found 61% thought some patients would have to pay for some treatment by 2017.

Four in five said it was also likely the health service would be providing fewer services.

All three main political parties have ruled out bringing in a form of charging in the short-term.

The doctors questioned were members of the BMA's Junior Members Forum, which effectively represents the top doctors of the future as it includes doctors who have graduated within the last 12 years and also students.

The poll also revealed that 94% thought the role of the private sector would continue to grow.

A total of 48% of those questioned said they envisaged they would have left the NHS within 10 years, with only a third (35%) of those saying that would be through choice.

Forum chairman Dr Andrew Thomson said it was time to have a debate about the future of the NHS because of pressures from the ageing population and new and ever more expensive drugs.

"We are likely to see demand on health increase with more older people and this is at a time when there will be more drugs coming on to the market," he said.

"It is clear we need to discuss how the NHS responds. It will either do less or will require more money.

"Our members are not saying they are for or against charging, just that we feel it needs to be discussed.

"We will be the ones making the decisions in the future and implementing changes so we want to know what the public, profession and political parties think."

Options

Various options have been put forward, including asking patients to contribute towards the cost of some minor treatments, such as varicose veins, or excluding them from NHS care altogether.

There has also been suggestions that an NHS tax could be introduced to help pay for the extra demands on the health service.

Dr Thomson said his members were not expressing a favour for any one option, but he suggested patients may well be ready for a change in the system.

BMA policy is still that the NHS should be free at the point of need, although the issue is likely to be discussed at the doctors' annual conference, which sets policy, later this year.

But a spokeswoman for the Patients Association said: "I think it is an important principle that where care is needed it is free.

"We would not be in favour of patients paying for care where doctors say it is necessary."

http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/health/6551607.stm
 

rynner2

Great Old One
Joined
Aug 7, 2001
Messages
55,273
Likes
8,878
Points
284
Location
Under the moon
#28
Hospital ‘orders’ reuse of sheets :shock:
Jack Malvern

Cleaners at an NHS hospital have been told to turn over dirty bed sheets rather than use clean linen. Good Hope Hospital in Birmingham advised its staff to “top and tail” used sheets to cut the £500,000 annual laundry bill.

Posters instructing staff that this procedure would save 0.275 pence for every sheet re-used were pinned on cupboards and doors leading to the A&E and maternity departments. A health worker said that new patients were being given the same sheets as the previous occupant.

A hospital spokesman denied the practice. He said the posters had been issued three years ago but had since been removed. John Baron, Tory shadow health minister, described it as a concern given that MRSA was such a problem in hospitals. Good Hope recorded 36 cases from April last year to January.

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/u ... 652467.ece
Any front-line confirmation of this?
 

escargot

Beloved of Ra
Joined
Aug 24, 2001
Messages
24,476
Likes
18,527
Points
309
#29
I worked as a HCA for years. It is indeed hard, menial work, with the added perk of being treated like dirt by certain more qualified staff. :(

However, it is satisfying to work so closely with patients. They are normally grateful for the care they get and it is always a pleasure to help support their anxious relations. :)
 

OneWingedBird

Beloved of Ra
Joined
Aug 3, 2003
Messages
15,532
Likes
6,356
Points
284
#30
dunno, but when i was a patient at High Royds hospital for a couple of months at the end of 2002, several times i was given sheets to try myself with after bathing, as they'd run out of towels!

A junior doctor gets paid less than a lot of nurses do and they have a huge amount of pressure and responsibility, not to mention verbal and physical abuse on a daily basis.
out of curiosity, do they still make jumior doctors do those 20% shitf type things? i never realised how the govt got away with treating junior doctors so badly until a friend who was one explained it to me... he said they had shifts where they were only supposed to be working a % of the time, so only got a pro rata % pay, when in fact they ended up working most or all of it...
 
Top