If we want to keep an NHS ‘free at the point of delivery’, WE have to fight for this.
It is no use expecting ‘them’ to sort out the NHS’s problems. It belongs to us – and as ‘our’ service it is up to us to suggest where the cuts come. Whatever you believe, there are going to be massive cuts, whichever party gets in. So look around, suggest where the cuts can come – and I will pass on sensible suggestions.
Here are some ideas. Do send more:
Being a realistic cynic, before the mad Consultants, Ministers and Uncle Tom Cobley are allowed to set up their ‘cost-cutting exercises’, perhaps we can all come up with ideas for saving money without the stupidity of cutting doctors, nurses, technicians etc.
LATEST SUGGESTION : before the PCT/NHS outsources services, get Staff to discuss these. One area has outsourced its Ambulance service to a private company. Fine in theory; in practice it meant a 101 year old patient was told at 3pm she could go home from A & E. Sister told her daughter bad news was there wasn’t an Ambulance available until 3 AM – twelve hours wait! Sister used her contacts, found there was an Ambulance going to another village 2 miles from the patient’s home, and arranged with the Ambulance crew to take two patients. She got stick from the dispatcher – obviously cross that his company had lost a lucrative journey fee. Staff could have pointed out that this could happen, and something could have been negotiated in the contract.
1. One patient suggests for starters that some of the staff must know where savings could be made, and there should be rewards for suggestions if taken up.
2. These same staff should be consulted where and when the NHS feels there is a need for change. Currently, expensive outside Consultants are bought in – if these were ditched – this could save the NHS millions. Professor Steve Field, Chair of Royal College of General Practictioners, says NHS spending on external consultants is a ‘scandal’, telling his audience of around 1,000 GPs that the money should be reinvested in services.
3. How many Ambulances have to turn back because someone has forgotten to put the patients’ notes in with them? This happened to a friend being transferred between a South London and a North London Hospital. Setting off at 11pm, the Ambulance finally arrived at its destination around 2.30 AM, having had to turn back for the notes. I dread to think what the overtime bill was for that mistake. So why not tape a notice HAVE YOU GOT THE PATIENTS’ NOTES? inside Ambulance doors, to act as a simple reminder.
4. Private hospitals work their radiotherapy units 12 hours a day. The NHS one near me works 8 hours a day. Radiotherapy machinery is a huge capital cost – so surely it is more efficient to keep this machinery working 12 hours a day, and overheads and capital replacement costs could be saved if the machinery was working longer hours? And patients wouldn’t have to wait so long for an appointment.
5. And why is Friday the signal for theatres, physio depts., etc. to close down at mid-day? Patients still need treatment, and again, private hospitals are often open until 8 pm.
Nurses, doctors, technicians, physios etc. and patients – you must have simple ideas that would save money and stop the need to employ outside Consultants. Send these to email@example.com – either anonymously, or if you want to be acknowledged put your name at the end of the email.
And I will even send it on to the appropriate department with the suggestion that this is deserving of a monetary reward.