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A faulty production line


  • Practices 'could miss out on £760m' as NHS focuses on hospitals, claims RCGP

    sceptic's comment 07 Oct 2016 11:29am

    Why the hospitals always win?
    * a staggering 93% of the top NHSE managers are of hospital background
    * The BMA has been and always will be consultant-led
    * Most people working in hospitals belong to powerful trade unions - Unison, Unite, Alliance...
    * REAL Royal Colleges of hospital specialities are treated with respect by the Government, unlike the General Practice's hilarious counterpart.
    * Consultants have a respectable HSCA to represent them, unlike toothless LMCs who run with the hare and hunt with the hounds
    * Closing down a surgery is nothing to local MPs, but closing down a hospital spells their political death.
    (there is more, but time to update QOF)

  • Hospitals to receive £1.8bn to implement 'seven-day' NHS

    sceptic's comment 17 Dec 2015 11:22am

    It would have been a joke if it wasn't so tragic. The money is not enough even to cover the deficit.

    The NHS overspent by £930m in three months this year and is on course for an annual deficit of at least £2bn, in its worst financial crisis in a generation.

    Hospitals are spending more than their budgets as they struggle to cope with the “triple whammy” of growing demand for care, £2bn of unexpected staff costs and the service’s finances being the tightest for years.

    But 1.8b "gift" makes excellent 10 o'c News

  • Please BMJ, no more studies on the ‘weekend effect’

    sceptic's comment 28 Nov 2015 11:39am

    Nigel, you have indeed a valid point, but that must not divert us from the fact that the BMJ, under its current editor, has been courageous enough to expose scandalous conflicts of interests of elite GPs, wearing several hats and doing extremely well for themselves.

  • GPs ‘unfairly punished’ on funding, BMA tells DDRB

    sceptic's comment 20 Oct 2015 12:31pm

    "We are NOT proposing a specific figure for the 2016/17 pay award"
    Amazing! Our "leaders" are entering negotiations without putting forward how much is needed to keep general practice alive.

    But the BMA has always been a consultant-led organisation as their recent success with the consultants' contract has shown – they fought Jeremy Hunt tooth and nail and they burnt him.

    It's about time GPs form their own trade union to fight their corner, instead of listening to vacuous expressions of support and allegiance, unsupported by real conviction or action.

  • Joining a super-practice provides shelter from the current storm

    sceptic's comment 14 Oct 2015 4:18pm

    PULSE offers a stream of the similar, all full of vision and hope, but hardly any details on what really matters, namely CONTRACTS.
    Are they PMS, GMS or draw up individual contracts with NHSE?
    Do they include other primary care organisations like pharmacists and optometrists?
    Do they have separate budgets, over and above the national average?
    Do they offer BMA contracts to their sessional doctors, or have they introduced their own?
    These questions have been asked before, but it seems that no one is prepared to answer them. I wonder why.

  • GP practices' locum use surges 20% in a year

    sceptic's comment 09 Sep 2015 1:11pm

    to 11.51
    Very well, but where does this leave locums and salaried and their income.
    Will they be better off or worse off working for private companies?

  • GP receptionists 'need training to recognise stroke symptoms'

    sceptic's comment 29 Jun 2015 12:47pm

    Before they come out with their laughable aphorisms, they should descend from their cloud-cuckoo-land and spend a day with our receptionists and see what REAL work is like.
    The thought that as a taxpayer I contribute towards their wages is enough to give me a stroke. I must see one my ladies at the reception fast.

  • A letter to the next health secretary

    sceptic's comment 02 May 2015 7:15pm

    Nigel, one can safely say that you are the voice of the voiceless. The snag is that they, of whatever persuasion, only listen to "...special advisers...and civil servants massaging their ministerial ego" as you elegantly put it.

  • ‘GPs get a deliberately bad press’

    sceptic's comment 07 Mar 2015 11:58am

    I wonder if this is the same Dr Mark Porter reported in PULSE on 23rd September 2014:

    BMA chair: GPs' arguments for 11% share of funding are 'artificial'
    Exclusive A split in the BMA has emerged as the Labour party calls for more funding, with BMA chair Dr Mark Porter saying GPs should not be given a greater share of the NHS budget, Pulse can reveal.

  • Are NICE guidelines becoming a ‘laughing stock’?

    sceptic's comment 06 Mar 2015 3:47pm

    It looks as if NICE's ambition was not to supplement medical schools and training, but to replace them, especially when it came to treatment.
    Either it becomes modest, allowing some flexibility or it is an irrelevance.

  • Labour to 'toughen rules' on following NICE guidelines as part of 'wide-ranging review'

    sceptic's comment 02 Mar 2015 11:55am

    I've been twice in the auditorium when Mr Burnham was outlining his plans. Even Labour faithfuls found it scary. I bet he will never be a Health Secretary. Anyone?

  • GP surgeries set to receive £1bn windfall

    sceptic's comment 01 Dec 2014 10:11am

    "Modernise" what? Buildings? Equipment? IT? Furniture? Receptionists' uniform? And how "modernising" will solve the recruitment problem?

  • 'Confused and opaque' NHS England insufficiently accountable to the public, says MP report

    sceptic's comment 11 Nov 2014 10:24am

    'Confused and opaque NHSE" - it certainly is:

    Simon Stevens addressing GPs five weeks ago:
    ...should we back the arrangements that now exist in Northumberland and Newcastle where you could say that single organisation like a hospital could also provide list-based general practice on the same terms as GPs?

    Ian Dodge, National Director, yesterday:
    NHSE Board paper 111406, Commissioning Strategy:
    Item 5. Co-commissioning could potentially lead to a range of benefits for the public and patients, including:
    • Improved access to primary care and wider out-of-hospitals services, with more services available closer to home;
    • High quality out-of-hospitals care

    Mike Bewick, NHSE deputy medical director and ex-GP, last week:
    Up-skilled GPs, “specialist generalist” or “hospitalists” as the Americans call them, could be working across hospital and community settings to reduce the cost of running the acute beds and improve care continuity.

    What are our BMA & RCGP "leaders" doing about it?
    (polite answers only please)

  • GP antibiotic prescribing under the microscope

    sceptic's comment 29 Oct 2014 1:56pm

    Very strange that the main culprit is not mentioned - FARMING.
    Most antibiotics are not used in this country to save life – nearly 50% of all antibiotics are used in farming, primarily in intensive livestock production to compensate for crowded and unnatural conditions on factory farms. Most pigs, poultry and dairy cows receive antibiotics routinely, whether or not they are unwell, and in recent years entirely new E.coli and MRSA superbugs have become major problems.

    Farm animal use contributes significantly towards resistance, and for some infections it is the main source. But then, who dares upset the farmers in Britain, GP-bashing is so much easier.

  • BMA chair: GPs' arguments for 11% share of funding are 'artificial'

    sceptic's comment 24 Sep 2014 5:14pm

    His CV reads:
    "Dr Mark Porter is a CONSULTANT anaesthetist at the University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire (UHCW) NHS Trust.
    His previous roles in the BMA have included being the chair of the CONSULTANTS Committee from 2009-2012."

    For 32 years I keep asking myself: When will GPs realise that the BMA is a consultant-led organisation?

  • Doctors who harm patients to face tougher sanctions, GMC proposes

    sceptic's comment 24 Aug 2014 2:07pm

    I have just received an invitation from the BMA, yes, the British Medical Association, OUR TRADE UNION(!), to attend a meeting on behalf of GMC.
    It reads : The General Medical Council is consulting on the actions we can take against doctors who don't meet professional standards and we'd like to hear from you, attend this event and have your say!

    I suggested that the BMA also organises another one at Albert Hall to tell the GMC what we think of it.

    But the scary power of the GMC is shown by the stream of ANONYMOUS comments.

  • Submit your questions for Dr Charles Alessi

    sceptic's comment 19 Jun 2014 1:57pm

    GPs are already working to full capacity. Could Dr Alessi advise us how to cope with the additional workload of :
    1. Diverting patients to our surgeries from A&Es, Walking-in and Urgent Care centres.
    2. Obliging with NICE guidelines, NHSE guidelines, Joint British Societies guidelines and all the others incorporated into QOF, LES etc.
    3. Health checks
    4. Open all hours
    5. Recruitment crisis
    That's enough (ed)

  • Government's £3.8bn integrated care fund 'lacks credibility', reports claim

    sceptic's comment 08 May 2014 5:46pm

    Hi Alex,
    Last year, Mr Lamb chose 14 "pioneers" out of hundreds of candidates to lead a "quiet revolution," to use the Minister's words. He identified them as "real leaders" in driving integration.
    Any news on the pioneers' performance so far and their fate?

  • Pulse's survey results

    sceptic's comment 27 Feb 2014 11:10am

    The first in the queue mystery caller (anon 12.03 pm) asking us to be brave whilst he remains incognito reminds me of a colonel who was urging his troops to charge using a loudspeaker, well out of harm's way.

    One wonders - Is (s)he a CCG member protecting privileges and lucrative salary? Petrified of CCG's "corrective" measures? Fearful of a dictatorial senior partner? Other?
    Go on dear colleague, be brave and show us your face.

  • GPs to manage millions more patients on statins as NICE halves primary prevention threshold to 10%

    sceptic's comment 12 Feb 2014 10:19pm

    I presume NICE members have signed a "no conflict of interest" declaration. Have they?