Having watched bits of the Election debates and various interviews on TV in recent weeks, I can conclusively say that health and the NHS has been generally ignored and when talked about, the real issues have been completely skated over. All three major parties seem unable to talk about making any cuts, this is ridiculous given the amount of money being wasted on various crackpots schemes in the NHS.
We have billions being thrown away on the pursuit of the internal market when it clearly doesn't work. We have numerous layers of administrators who are not needed such as the PCTs and the SHAs, these bureaucratic layers actually spend a lot of money trying to avoid doing work rather than actually funding the front line services. We have numerous QUANGOs doing sod all of use and we have billions being wasted paying for ridiculous PFI schemes that are often run by the banks owned by the tax payer, this is beyond farcical.
There has been no open honest debate about this waste and this inefficiency, the politicians are too afraid to talk of the NHS, it is a political hot potato. The market needs to be dismantled, the way health care is funded needs to be radically simplified and transformed from the current overcomplicated shambles it is.
Gordon Brown's comments have been beneath contempt. Not only have Labour been sending out misleading leaflets to cancer patients in the most abhorrent of circumstances, but they pretend that scrapping their stupid top down targets would be the end of the world for patients, this is clearly not the case. Gordon Brown has been pretending that targets are the key for patients, actually a lot of the scientific research shows that targets are probably doing a lot more harm than good.
Targets are a waste of time. It is the capacity of front line services that is key, not the centralised targets imposed by the ignorant and uneducated bureaucrats. The 2-week cancer target is a great example of this, without extra capacity the 2-week target will arguably worsen outcomes as it will allow cunning patients a way of jumping the queue in a way that overrides clinical priority.
The old system in which referrals were overseen by the expert clinicians was far better, clinical priority was far better served. The same is true for the ridiculous 18 week surgery targets, a blanket rule such as this helps no one, it leads to ridiculous tactics in fiddling the paperwork to make money, while if capacity is not increased then no one is better off. Some people need their operations urgently, others are happy to wait for a year, lumping everyone in the same box is just plain stupid.
Targets are just one of the ways in which this corrupt abhorrent regime have tried to control the NHS from the top in a way that has not helped the majority of patients. The government's paranoid desire for complete control helps no one, it results in a system in which cooperation is dead, fear and intimidation rule. Clinical priority is now decided by medically ignorant managers and not the highly trained doctors, taking the expertise out of the prioritisation of treatment has been a massive backwards step. This government has empowered idiots because they are easier to control and rule. Gordon Brown is a liar or he does not understand the NHS, the targets need to be scrapped, we need power to be handed back to the clinicians and we need a massive cull in the layers of managers who do nothing more than obstructing patient care. And after all if those in charge think everything is so much better, why are they trying to hide the public from reality?