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Water cooler moment

Copperfield thinks things can't get worse, until an urgent email from his PCT arrives.

Ah... bless. Here's the gist of a ‘priority e-mail' from the desk of the PCT Muppet in charge of Primary Care Innovation and Development.

‘We're drowning in A&E. We've experienced multiple breaches of our four hour access target. Far too many patients have turned up complaining of diarrhoea and/or vomiting. Please could GPs stop sending them.'

This from the bloke whose proposed cuts to my PMS contract payments and plans to impose as yet undefined ‘key performance indicators' that must be met to avoid further cuts have prompted a 17.5% reduction in my monthly drawings in anticipation of bad times to come.

Not only that, in an effort to protect my younger partners (and to improve the chances that there will in fact be a practice for them to inherit when us old duffers move on) we've given up our entitlement to sabbatical leave, reduced our annual leave quota by five days, pooled our education payments and even now, no word of a lie, there's a bloke going around repossessing the building's water coolers.

So, a message to The Man who proposals will leave me substantially poorer, distinctly stressed and very thirsty in the upcoming summer.

No GP with their brain plugged in would refer uncomplicated winter vomiting bugs to Casualty. So it's going to be difficult to stop doing something that I'm not doing in the first place. However, I'm seriously considering sending them in now just out of spite.

Frankly I don't give a monkey's whether he hits his targets or not. That's his problem. But he can stop bothering me and the rest of the GPs who he was so keen to ride roughshod over during the laughably termed ‘PMS contract consultation'. To paraphrase the "Chance" card he can Fuck Off – Go Directly to Fuck Off – Do not pass 'GO' – Do not collect 200 more Fuck Offs (oh alright then... he can have them with my compliments ).

One thing though, I'll agree not to bad mouth him around the water cooler. So long as he knows that I would if I could.