It seems GP's are allowing themselves to be used by DWP to pursue its punitive welfare to work policies. Islington CCG are piloting Maximus/DWP employment coaches in six surgeries. This is a trend that will corrode people's trust in their GP's. Do you not get it? This is institutionalised violence against people who need our support and care, perpetrated in the name of an ideology of scroungers, the work-shy, the welfare-dependent. These are the policies of a sick society - if we continue to passively go along with it.
Is it a good idea - in principle as well as in terms of more pressure on GP's? Getting people "back to work" is currently a pretty toxic policy theme of this government, championed by Ian Duncan Smith and the DWP. Are GP's going to get involved, however indirectly, in the pressure to declare benefit claimants fit for work? How are patients already experiencing the punitive regime of WCA, sanctioning, being berated by the press as 'scroungers' - how might they feel about their GP joining the 'get to work' hoo-ha? As a psychotherapist I'm already really concerned about the psychological coercion built into Jobcentre work programmes. Are we going to see GP practices providing another plank in the government's campaign to demonise (sorry, help) physically and mentally disabled people with the "you should be working/work is good for you" stick?
It will only be campaigns like SOS and SPClosures that will rescue the NHS from neoliberalist policies - Tory or Labour, in my humble opinion!
Isn't the Government's long game to privatise General Practice, piece by piece? To have GPs working for Virgin and co on a VERY different contract?
Steve - I could not agree more. And there is growing opposition from many psychiatrists to the exponential growth of diagnosis (DSM5) and treatment programmes to match. For example - http://dxsummit.org
One of the problems with IAPT is that it has tended to drive longer-term non-CBT psychological therapies out of the NHS. Many therapists working in private practice are offering free and very-low fee psychotherapy to some of their clients. We always have to some degree. A group of us are now working on a national network to encourage colleagues to offer more free therapy in response to growing demand and failing supply for people on low incomes - see freepsychotherapynetwork.com
Oooops! - Miliband p.p. broadcast on NHA? I wish. NHS of course.
I certainly care about the well-being of my GPs and their practice in Tower Hamlets. They do a brilliant job. As a "talking-therapy" psychotherapist, I have watched NHS psychotherapy services virtually wiped out over the last few years - under Labour as well the Coalition.
What is still hard to get across is that there is an ideological thrust behind the processes that are presented and received as piecemeal 'problems with the NHS'. I despair when Miliband does a party political broadcast on the NHA and doesn't use the P word - privatisation.