...a blog by Richard Flowers

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Day 2590: What's Up Doc?


I guess that the trade union for doctors, the BMA (Bona Medical Appliances), were really JOLLY GLAD that the Archpillock of Canterbury decided to go so dramatically OFF PISTE, as all the loud coverage of HIM has enabled them to sneak out a quick backing down with very little press attention.

This is – I should hope – going to see some resolution to the long running DISPUTE about longer opening hours. It would make a whole lot more sense for people IN work to be able to visit their doctor without having to take time OFF work to do so. Because faced with the choice most people choose to skip the doctor rather than the office, unless they're REALLY ill. Which means a lot of preventative medicine goes undone.

I think that doctors actually recognise this and would like to come to an agreement – not that they do themselves any favours protesting "too much" that everything is lovely and 800% of patients love their opening hours. But both the BMA and the government are being pig-headed.

Basically, the Labour gave doctors squillions of pounds for doing stuff they were doing already, so now they are behaving truculently to try and get some FACE back.

Not that the doctors didn't DESERVE paying for doing all those little extras; you can't run the health service forever on the charity of doctors (despite what Mr Balloon might think).

Meanwhile the BMA respond with SCARY stories about this being the government attempting to privatise the health service.

Result: loggerheads. And the editor of the Lancet starts accusing the BMA of not representing doctors properly.

Being the Labour, the government decides to IMPOSE a centralised solution, and Health Secretary Postman Pat writes to GPs directly

to give them their orders.

Of course, micro-managing EVERY GP's surgery in the country from No. 79 Whitehall is the sort of bonkers plan only a Labour Minister could come up with. And it's why you end up with these stupid head-butting contests where the centralised union and the centralised ministry end up eyeball to equally-ugly eyeball.

And it is the PATIENTS who get forgotten in the middle of all this – which is why it is so important to restore a sense of balance and put patients back in charge.

No comments: