I believe that in the fullness of time we will look back at these months of uncertainty and see it as a short diversion from the grand task in hand.

In times of stress and change, it's pretty self-evident that leadership and continuity of service are perhaps the hardest things to achieve. As a general principle, it's always the general in charge who is getting it wrong, according to popular analysis.

Outside critics often have a pop at management, as though everyone in a position of power and influence has lost his or her sense of reason. May I remind some of those critics of an observation made by King George II who, when told that General James Wolfe, the hero of Quebec, was insane, replied: 'Oh, he's mad is he? Then I wish he would bite some of my other generals.'

It was a witty retort, and one which we might all digest. There may be a sense of uncertainty around, with snipers and malcontents making the job even tougher. However, in these difficult circumstances that we find ourselves in, leadership of the right calibre, and staff with a sense of commitment, can still make an immense difference to people's lives.

Let us keep faith with what we are trying to achieve for our patients out there. Let us also recognise our successes. Let us celebrate them, and perhaps above all, let us keep a sense of purpose.

Maybe that looks hard to achieve when so many of us found ourselves in that cohort of NHS senior employees who had to go through the process of applying for new posts. It was a long, demanding, and sometimes wearying process that involved being interviewed, assessed and matched into new jobs. Then, the 'special ones' - to borrow the tongue-in-cheek phrase coined by Chelsea's Jose Mourinho - had to get on with setting up the new organisations, and be judged as to our fitness for purpose.

But 'tough' as it all seems, let us keep a sense of perspective: most of us still have a job, and a big job still to do. I know also that my so-called problems are as nothing compared to the little Ethiopian girl who turned up in Lancashire with her mother seeking asylum and safe refuge just a couple of weeks ago. This bright-as-a-button child doesn't even know where her father and sisters are, yet she's battling away and bravely getting to grips with her changed circumstances.

As for those of us getting to grips with our 'changed circumstances' in the NHS, I believe that in the fullness of time we will look back at these months of uncertainty and see it as a short diversion from the grand task in hand. There is much to do, and PCTs like ours are trying valiantly to get on with doing it.

Coping and dealing with change has been a regular feature over the past few years or so, but like many other PCTs, ours in East Lancashire have managed to deliver more and better services, with new ways of providing them, while also establishing both legally binding and informal partnerships and agreements to help the process along. In common with others, we have achieved financial balance, while still delivering vital services, and handling changes in structure every few years or so. It's a way of life, really. You just have to deal with it and carry on.

Yet according to 'information' being reported on, the NHS as a whole might appear to be in melt-down. There again, as Karl Von Clausewitz observed way back in 1832: 'The greater part of information obtained is contradictory, a still greater part is false, and by far the greatest part is of doubtful character.' Maybe, in a funny sort of way, that should spur us on to see us through this period of change.