Honeyball’s Weekly Round Up


If the budget did one thing, it showed the Coalition Government in its true colours.  Now we know it’s a Tory Government in which the Lib-Dems appear to have very little say, I have decided it would be useful to do a weekly digest of some of the more iniquitous Tory actions during the past seven days plus anything else which seems interesting. 

Amid Wimbledon and World Cup fever, not to mention cricket, Andrew Lansley, the new Health Secretary quietly announced that he would cut patients right to see a family doctor within 48 hours as we all as dropping the 18 week waiting time target for hospital treatment.

Lansley says he is freeing the NHS from bureaucracy and targets that have no clinical justification. This will, it is claimed, help speed up the £850mn cuts that NHS managers are expected to make by 2014.

Monitoring it is essential to ensure that patients get the highest level of care and the earliest available opportunity. With no alternative in place I am concerned that we will return to the days when people waited for months, sometimes years for treatment, an appalling state of affairs which the Labour Government put a stop to.

I also read about Iain Duncan Smith’s announcement he would relocate the long-term unemployed to areas where there is greater opportunity for work. This is a tall order and I cannot see how this will work in reality. Is this just more rhetoric?

The Observer’s poll was an interesting read – it suggested support for the Lib-Dems had slumped because they backed the VAT increase. Surely this can’t be the only reason its voters are uprooting?  Conservative Government obviously does not suit Lib-Dem activists and voters.

One thought on “Honeyball’s Weekly Round Up

  1. I am not sure that it is fair to criticise Mr. Lansley for wanting to abolish the right of patients to see their GP within 48 hours.
    These targets are not always useful and in this case I think that it is better to leave the decision about who gets seen first to the GP him/herself. It would, for instance, be follish to put someone requiring tatoo removal before a patient with a serious and pressing need to be seen, just because the person with the tatoos had a right to be seen within 48 hours.
    This top down micromanagement is such a persistent and unwelcome feature of both New Labour and the EU.
    If asked whether I would prefer decisions about my position on a GP waiting list to be decided by the GP or by some remote politician in Westminster (who has probably been helping him/herself to the funds needed for medical tratments) the answer would of course be the GP.
    GPs are bright people who have passed loads of exams, they know their patients’ needs and they are far more trustworthy than politicians.
    The targets set for A&E patients were a total mess. Ambulance drivers left patients waiting in the Ambulance to delay the registered time of arrival so that when the figures were put together the hospital could be seen to be responding to patients within given time limits. This did not serve the needs of patients or save any money.
    The same could be said for the time limits on booking an appointment to see a GP. I remember well a member of my family needing an appointment being told that they could not make the appointment but they should ring back at a later given date to make the appointment (just to make sure that the target for the time between making the appointment and getting it were met) – what a mess, making an appointment to make an appointment. It reminded me of a rather bureaucratic organisation for which I used to work which had not just a meeting to schedule meetings but a meeting about the meeting about the meeting to schedule meetings.
    Another example of top down unecessary micro-management came to my attention today. I learned that the EU is now considering a ban on the sale of eggs buy the dozen. The economy and currency of the EU is in turmoil and they can find the time to worry about how many eggs should be in a box!
    Egg retailers and customers should be free to sell and buy eggs in whatever numbers they want. Why on earth should the EU interfer? Perhaps because they are pining for the days, or rather the years, 15 years in fact, that they took to work out what chocolate is.

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