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Readers' letters

Letters to Health Service Journal's editor.
  • Exclusive: Service hit by staff 'exodus' after CCG transfers contract to Circle

    21-Dec-2014 11:37 pm

    I am not involved in this but I wonder if the dermatology dept had got too big for its boots and was providing the service it wanted, not what the patients, CCG and hospital wanted. We certainly still see this in neurology where there are still chin-stroking grand round expeditions to wards with multiple professors and consultants, but try to get an acute opinion... In this context Circle is just providing the vehicle for change. If it has to source a few locums at 200k pa then in the context of the bigger project, that is reasonable while they recruit more permanent staff who will do the job needed.

  • NHS England to trial employing pharmacists in A&E

    21-Dec-2014 11:11 pm

    The debate about anonymity often comes up but the fact is that anyone posting on here cares enough to spend their own money on a HSJ subscription to understand the NHS monster. That gives all posts, even the ranty ones, a good degree of legitimacy. I post anonymously because despite being objectively successful, bullying is rife in the NHS. The businessman Sir Christopher Bland found that the amount of backbiting, in-fighting and general skulduggery in an organisation is in direct proportion to the nobility of its goals. (He was Chairman at the Hammersmith amongst many other things).

  • Exclusive: Top hospital chief criticises 'out of area' referrals move

    21-Dec-2014 9:02 pm

    The NHS is not a true market and thus falls over when market principles are applied. I am part of an excellent General Practice. We offer 'do todays work today' we can only do this for a limited number of patients and thus we have a highly restricted practice area. If we cannot limit our list size then our care would deteriorate, as we are not allowed to introduce, let alone increase, our charges.

  • Emergency care fines strengthened to encourage 'radical transformation'

    21-Dec-2014 7:55 pm

    Fines don't work, when will folks learn. My staff are busting a gut to get patients seen safely and as quickly as possible and giving us extra money or taking money from us will not make any difference whatsoever

  • Pharmacists as care givers can make the forward view come true

    21-Dec-2014 6:13 pm

    Thank you 4.27. I appear to have upset another doctor on a related thread. This doesn't seem to've been explained properly, which may be part of the problem. No, we don't do the things I listed routinely. This is because the national pharmacy contract pays community pharmacies by items dispensed rather than any particular service, although we did have a similar model to general practice for "enhanced" services, like offering chlamydia screening kits (but not testing or treating) and providing emergency contraception. Sadly, most of the time, we just call out someone's name, check their address and hand over a bag. Or take a bag someone brings in for incineration without asking why they're not taking something, or checking with their GP. Or let a patient leave our hospital pharmacy with a new bag, without checking that they know how to take what's in it. We need to do our jobs better and that means working with the professionals in ED, acute care, the community and in care homes. With you, to your decisions and under your leadership. We can only give patients a better understanding of their medicines that you've prescribed for a condition you've diagnosed if you allow us to work with you and show us where and how we can do better. Thank you for your reply.

  • Planning guidance: NHS England sets out next steps for realising forward view

    21-Dec-2014 1:32 pm

    All well and good to say the guidance/next steps is rubbish - so what would you do?

  • 'He's not the Messiah but...': HSJ's Christmas cover

    20-Dec-2014 9:25 pm

    Yes no doubt it will bring out the same religious nutters that condemned 'Life of Brian' without even seeing the film.

  • NHS England says CCGs must increase mental health spend

    20-Dec-2014 7:14 pm

    Remember please, this is guidance. How will this be policed. The HSCA 12 establishes an accountability framework that makes the relationship between CCGs and NHSE clear. The latter has been reluctant to use this authority. We were also told that CCGs plans for MH spend, would be closely scrutinised last Autumn to see that appropriate spend on MH was intended for 15-16. Is this the completion of that circle? Surely not; otherwise would not the amount of under-investment have been identified. This guidance sets a target date of 2020. We mustn't forget next year is an election year, with all sorts of jiggery-pokery being justified by the need to 'balance the books. So, perhaps, one cheer is justified just now.

  • Exclusive: Better care fund investment returns 'wildly unrealistic', analysis finds

    20-Dec-2014 1:30 pm

    Yet another half baked idea that will fall the same was as CQUIN QUIP Darze, etc etc.....

  • Vacancy crisis: It's too tough in the NHS top jobs

    20-Dec-2014 12:37 pm

    Much as I agree with 13-Dec-2014 10:13 Am, there is a major omission in his/her list of the usual suspects (politicians etc). Although not a manager, I have worked closely as a clinician with NHS management at various levels since 2006. What struck me the most was the "dog eats dog" attitude, especially from utterly incompetent senior management towards highly capable middle management they found a threat. Some of those (usually ennobled) “leaders” jumped on the Lansley’s reform to settle some old scores and they replaced platinum grade administrators with blundering amateurs who would not have qualified for Band 3 six years ago. I believe that Simon Stevens is a strong enough character not to fear charismatic managers but apply their talents to improving patient welfare.

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