The With Friends Like These… Award
Last year health secretary Jeremy Hunt was the proud recipient of the ‘Paul Dacre Award for Endearing Himself to GPs’. Refusing to rest on his laurels, he has done it again. He told Pulse in March he had ‘no problem with GPs being well paid’, then weeks later approved a measly 0.28% funding rise. He promised £5 per patient funding to support vulnerable patients, but conveniently forgot to mandate that NHS England provide it to everyone. His backing for Pulse’s Stop Practice Closures campaign surprised many, not least those who believe he has done nothing to ease the pressures being heaped on general practice. All in all, a worthy winner.
Runner-up Former NHS chief executive David Nicholson, who was forced to apologise after retweeting a parody of the film Downfall – depicting the last days of Adolf Hitler – with subtitles changed to show IT lead Tim Kelsey’s reaction to the furore over his care.data scheme.