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My plea to NHS England – stop torturing us with illusions of help



I realise I have visited this subject before, but I don’t care – because the paragraph I am about to highlight a) Deserves highlighting and b) Makes me want to punch someone in the face. It’s an extract from NHS England’s invitation to N.E. Staffordshire practices to get involved with the programme of ‘Ten high impact actions’ designed to free up GP time.

Just sod off and stop torturing us with illusions of help

This is what it says:  ‘This is an excellent opportunity for all practices to benefit from a specially tailored programme designed to support and enable them to make changes, which will improve efficiency, release time and aid future sustainability’. Let me just arrange this word-salad into its key parts: ‘Opportunity/benefit/support/enable/improve/future’. So any tangible outcome is about six steps removed from what’s originally on offer. Which leaves you wondering what the frigging frig this is all about and why you should bother to read any further.

If you do, you’ll discover that those ‘high impact’ ideas include group consultations, matching capacity and demand, personal resilience, touch-typing/speed reading, practice based navigators and, get this, ‘leadership of change, process improvement and rapid cycle management’.

Look chaps, if you really are blind to the irony of pretending to save 10% of GP time by forcing us to wade through this jargon-riddled, patronising, sloganeering, mindless and meaningless bullshit, then I shall enjoy the irony of poking your eyes out.

This is now the norm with NHS communications purporting to help/support general practice. So I have a plea to whoever actually drafts them. If you have real, solid, constructive ideas to convey, then please articulate them, simply and clearly. And if you don’t, then just sod off and stop torturing us with illusions of help. In the interim, the only high impact you’ve induced is the one involving my frontal bones and my desk.