Saturday, 9 April 2011

Cameron's NHS debacle grinds on

Cameron must know how much he has misjudged the NHS reform plans when Norman Tebbit objects to them for going to far.

In an article for the Mirror, Tebbit - a former chairman of a charity supporting a hospital actively involved in medical training - highlights the dangers of private sector cherry-picking on the viability of NHS hospitals:

"One problem is that within the NHS there are teaching hospitals, often centres of excellence, which apart from treating patients, also have the responsibility of training doctors and nurses. That all takes time and costs money. Private hospitals are under no obligation to do training and do not have to carry those costs... Even worse for the teaching hospitals, if the private hospitals can hoover up all the straightforward routine surgery, like hip joint replacement, where can the young surgeons gain the experience which would allow them to move on to more difficult surgery?...Another problem for the NHS hospitals is that they cannot refuse to treat patients. Whether it is a drunken fool with a cut face from a street brawl, or a young mother with cancer or a heart attack, no one can be turned away, but the private hospital can pick and choose."

This reflects an earlier piece he wrote for the Telegraph, in which he concluded:

The question that many must be asking is how - when it was clear from a very early stage that these reforms would be hugely controversial and unpopular - Cameron managed to so woefully misjudge the situation?


Anthony Wells, over at UK Polling Report, has detailed analysis of the latest YouGov poll. One startling statistic is that only 3% of voters think that the government should continue with their reforms as they currently stand - including only 5% of Conservative voters.

1 comment:

  1. There is a reason that private hospitals are present in the UK - It's obvious - The NHS is a shambles