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It’s not a good day to get sick

It’s not a good day to get sick

As everyone knows, 2 August is not a good day to get sick. Hospitals are in chaos, and patients are worried about undertrained, inexperienced and bewildered healthcare staff looking after them.

This chaos means that mortality rates are worryingly high. Mistakes will be happening throughout the day, but they are systemic issues – the young healthcare professionals cannot be blamed for these.

The state of the hospitals today means that patients can expect long waiting times. (I’m almost in awe of the audacity of the Prime Minister stating that the strikes are to blame for long waiting lists.)

This pandemonium is not limited to hospitals, of course. GPs are telling me that they are experiencing levels akin to winter pressures, and we are in the middle of summer.

They are reluctant to refer to hospitals today, knowing that their patients are unlikely to get the care they need. Their referrals might be received by staff who don’t have the capacity to make the best clinical decision.

We reported that one quarter of GPs now have private medical insurance, and it was striking that none of the media coverage was negative. They all simply understood why GPs felt they had to do this. After all, who today would trust the NHS to do its job properly?

So yes, today – like every other day – is a bad day to get sick. Oh, apparently it is also the day new doctors start.

Jaimie Kaffash is editor of Pulse. Follow him on Twitter @jkaffash or email him at



Please note, only GPs are permitted to add comments to articles

David Church 2 August, 2023 9:54 pm

New Junior doctor handover should be on a weekend, for all sorts of reasons.
It is just that NHS management would not consider it.

Gary Parkes 3 August, 2023 6:39 am

I heard first hand from a “junior doctor” (qualified 13 years and has speciality CCT but still called junior- but that is an issue for another day) who entered yet the black “Wednesday chaos “ of yet another change of hospital who told me :
1. IT gave them yet another new “ must use” email address(the Trust don’t use the standard!
2. Admin got the spelling of their name wrong so all the user names and email are wrong – so no access to any IT systems including -records, prescribing , investigations etc.
3. They have to use their own mobile phone to communicate around the hospital but mobile reception is rubbish unless you have wifi enabled telephone smart phone. Oh and the official Wifi does not show up on a normal wifi turn on search.
4. The person giving the orientation only knew they were doing it 5 minutes before the session was to begin so it was garbled and cobbled together.
5. BTW in hospital you have to do new mandatory training (on line) at every place and for that of course you need the user name and password which couldn’t be corrected because IT was too busy
6. Oh and to add insult to chaotic injury the name badge (correct name this time) showed wrong title and wrong specialty.
There must be a very special recruitment process for selecting management and administrators in the NHS.

David jenkins 3 August, 2023 12:46 pm

when are joe public going to be made aware of the fact that it is nhs MANAGERS that are responsible for nearly all the mess ?

surely there is something we, as a profession, could be doing to show that all the fault that the managers blurt out whenever there is some disaster or mishap, is actually caused by bad, inept, people at the management end ?

just a thought…………….

Cameron Wilson 3 August, 2023 2:33 pm

Whole thing needs broken up. Far too big and unwieldy. No ownership and all which that brings. Compare that to the ultra efficient GP Practice! All those who think big is best, PCN proponents for example should take note. Look what happened to the UK car industry when all those iconic names became BLC!!

Cameron Wilson 3 August, 2023 2:36 pm

Leyland motors!!

Some Bloke 6 August, 2023 1:15 pm

Not a good country to get sick in. Any day.