Sunday, 25 July 2010

NHS 'Axe' Falls On The Wrong Necks

The Sunday Telegraph reports that the NHS has drawn up plans for 'sweeping cuts to services, resulting in restrictions on the most basic treatment for the sick and elderly.'
"The Sunday Telegraph found the details of hundreds of cuts buried in obscure appendices to lengthy policy and strategy documents published by trusts. In most cases, local communities appear to be unaware of the plans."
Perhaps the first place the axe should fall is on the necks of unnecessary administration staff, including those who seem to spend their time producing lengthy policy and strategy documents.

One of the biggest headaches that the NHS faces is that of care for the elderly, with one in five of the population being over 65 come 2026 - so reports Joan Bakewell in a comment piece in the same newspaper. She adds: "When it comes to the problems of old age, people are not stupid: they are fully capable of thinking ahead about how to pay for their care. Sadly, governments can rarely say the same." and with that last sentence, therein lies the problem. One is reminded of the words uttered by Ronald Reagan: "In this present crisis, government is not the solution to our problem; government is the problem." in that the NHS becomes a 'political football' kicked from one political ideology to another and back again  by, it seems, people who have no idea what they are doing or trying to achieve.

Some further words of Reagan's bear repetition: "It is my intention to curb the size and influence of the Federal establishment and to demand recognition of the distinction between the powers granted to the Federal Government and those reserved to the States or to the people." If Cameron really did intend to devolve power, he would actually implement the principle Reagan proposed and not introduce 'top-down' - and thereby centrally controlled - ideas like The Big Society.

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