Saturday, 4 August 2007
The 'ambitious innovative' MTAS
This is the picture that the BBC attempted to portray this evening on Newsnight, a report fronted by an Economics editor that woefully failed to get to grips with the real issues regarding MTAS and MMC. Junior doctors were unfairly portrayed as spoilt brats who had no right to expect to be treated humanely by their masterful employer, the NHS.
The illogical statements of Jim Johnson 'vascular surgeon', which claimed that crushing the hopes of thousands by forcing them into demoralising service grade posts would improve the service, beggared belief. While the spiteful Alan Maynard again showed his utter failure to understand anything about how to provide a good quality health service by hinting that doctors were simply too expensive now; I wonder if the patients would be happy to hear that the government thinks it is now too expensive to provide a high quality service run by doctors?
The program was a shoddy attempt at journalism concocted by a broadcaster which has consistently failed to get its head around these complex issues. How Channel 4 have shown them how it should be done over recent weeks. The patronising and insulting tone adopted by the aristocratic BBC journalists did appear more than a little hypocritical given their own secure careers, careers which they have forged by attacking easy targets such as junior doctors. It made me laugh that they portrayed us as a 'powerful' group, while our union the BMA were painted as a militant band; events this year have shown that we are far from 'powerful' and that the BMA are more of a damp squib than a militant mob.
The worst thing was that this BBC report failed to capture any of the human element of this disaster, by trying to portray the oppressed as spoilt and and powerful, they had only succeeded in making themselves appear as callous agents of the state. It is very sad that we have almost become so numb that all the upsetting stories do not have the impact that they should anymore. I sit and think that I should be sadder, or angrier, but the emotional tap has run pretty much dry. I have been left resentful and bitter, not a pleasant combination I know.
I find it hard to take in just how many people's hopes, dreams, lives, careers have been left in tatters thanks to this year's shambles. I think of close friends who I know have been let down and then I start to feel less numb, I can still empathise after all. But when it comes to trying to add up just how many doctors have been let down so very badly, I hit a brick wall, I cannot imagine so much neglectful destruction in one go.
So many have been left unemployed and shattered, so many have been moved miles from their homes, so many have had offers withdrawn, so many have been treated with disdain and scorn by various agents of the state, so many have been left in a state of depressed apathy that they so do not deserve to have to experience.
It is too much to imagine, would we be able to cope if we could imagine so much human suffering on such a scale? We must not forget this betrayal, if any of us make it higher up the chain of command we should always remember how this felt, there should be no excuse for treating people with so little respect.
The BBC thinks things have been 'overdone'. I am embarrassed for them that they are so happy to belittle the betrayal of a generation of hard working caring professionals in such a way. The government's admission that a high quality NHS run by properly trained doctors is just too costly is not newsworthy in the eyes of the BBC. But then I just a spolit junior doctor who happens to want to be trained to a high level so that I can do my job well in the future, what's so wrong with that?