Monday, 27 June 2011
Save It Or Cure It (Part Two).
Well, I have no particular desire to save it, and I'm pretty sure curing it is a lost hope, much like attempting to cure pancreatic cancer. The odds are stacked against it. All this 'bullshit' about the "the NHS belongs to the people" is rhetoric for consumption by the public to conceal the truth about a bureaucratic organisation, that is inefficient, uncaring and dedicated to maintaining the privileged position of the medical profession, no matter how poor or dangerous they are. It lacks any humanity, treating those who are old, pregnant, those with disabilities, mental and physical, and often the injured, with callousness and at best indifference. Legions have been sacrificed in the A&E departments, the long stay hospitals, the orthopod wards. It almost ceases to exist at weekends and holidays, except for the ill-paid and untrained nursing assistants, locum doctors and spotty FY1's and 2's. And yet it costs more and more despite this lack of care and consistent under achievement.
The scandals that have broken over the years, constantly fade from view and the NHS is consistently held up to be precious and worthy of merit despite the fact that the very existence of these appalling debacles in care indicates the lie this is. Every politician within the ranks of every party wants rid of it and they collude together to bring about it's demise and have done so since the turn of the century. The critics of reform are just 'spinning' for appearances sake. The reforms have to be done by stealth, and creeping Privatisation or 'Marketisation' are the tools. Yet this will change nothing, except of course to make it even more expensive than it is now. The same medic's will be working for Mammon as they did for God, wielding the same indifference, stupidity and sometimes open cruelty, as before.
Sentimental and complacent attitudes abound about the NHS on every side, taking no account of it's sheer inability to fulfill any of it's promises to treat people with care and with safety. On many occasions it has lied and certainly obfuscates interminably. Not only have Doctors been proven as liars they have been given a right to do so by the lack of any law that stops them (see will powells' story). The NHS and the Doctors constantly and callously reinforce prejudice's against a large parts of society who are undeserving of their venom. The overweight, those who stray beyond arbitrary and unproven limits on the consumption of fats, drink, meat, butter, salt et al. All are stigmatised, patronised, even dehumanised by the constant vilification of their lifestyles despite there being considerable evidence that following the dogma of the DoH is at least as dangerous as not doing and sometimes more so.
The Institutions of the State set up to oversee the NHS from the Complaints system, to the Health Care Commission to it's successor the Care Quality Commission have been singularly and spectacularly unable to curtail it's worst practises and expose it's failings. Quality and Care are in fact an anathema to the NHS which not only robs its patients of dignity but on a number of occasions actually takes their lives. The culprits rarely are found let alone brought to anything vaguely resembling ordure. Medicine is the only section of society where causing death does not automatically invite investigation and prosecution (well alright the Police as well).
Some may view this as extreme but if we are ever to curtail the power of Physicians and those who invest undeserved benevolence in them we need to be extreme. So let's start all over again. Right back from the basics of curing the sick and caring for those in distress and danger, to the best of your ability. Not just to the end of the shift, nights and weekends excluded, even if you do have a private clinic to get to, or you've got a speaking engagement for 'Pharma' in Berne. Give back to the patient the respect they deserve as the paymaster, and stand up and be counted on their side, instead of just taking the money.
So let us not Save It, or Cure It, just slip in the syringe driver of oblivion you are so fond of using and kill it!
Oh, and by the way, I want my money back!