Wednesday, 27 February 2013

NHS in Wales

Aneurin Bevan
Yesterday, Judith Phillips in the Daily Post was all gloom and doom about the NHS in Wales. She does say and I quote "but it seems we have now reached a crisis point where public confidence in those running the NHS in North Wales is at an all time low."

What utter bullshit - yes complete and utter drivel....

Now what do you mean I hear you ask - well lets start with her conclusion and I quote again "but throwing the responsibility for the level of care given by community hospitals onto families and county council social services departments, is in my opinion going to open up yet another can of worms."

Which does rather show she has no clue what she is talking about, that she does not realise that the family and the local council was an integral part of our care system as envisaged when the NHS was established in the very first place.

We should be proud of the NHS, of what it has achieved, but we need also to recognise that in changing times what was the remedy of yesteryear may not be the best use of the 'limited' resources available to us now.

And in reaching those decision as to the future shape of the NHS within Wales they should be based on clear cut clinical opinion, made in the best interest of all of us. Not may I add the straw sample of a deluded correspondent of the Daily Post.

Take community hospitals....lets be honest they have had their day, they are not really the answer to our needs. Let me go further.....the moment someone comes a patient at a community hospital is in reality a sign of failure somewhere else.

We should be truly proud of the welfare system this country has, think....we are all living longer thanks to welfare, we have less infant deaths thanks to welfare.....and just on the simple fact there are more of us, will mean welfare costs will go up.

Which brings me to being old.

Think about....if put simply you have the countries GDP and from that you need to pay for children, adults and pensioners. Are we really in a society that as children demanded to be feed, then when working moaned that everyone else wanted to be fed and in our retirement demand that we are fed again?

Personal responsibility, the ability to plan and care for oneself - that is the aim we all should have. And the majority of us will live full and independent lives.

But sometime along the road we may need assistance, and sometimes we may need care, and sometimes we might even need acute care as we wait for death. Death is inevitable, but it need not be in pain.

We have plenty of care homes, the private sector in the most provide a very good service, and sometimes for some people whom cannot look after themselves that is the best place for them to be.

However what of those with acute needs - such as dementia or alzheimers, what they need is specialised palliative care in purpose built nursing homes. And that is one thing we lack, sufficient nursing homes to care for those who need specialised care, even if just means providing respite for the caring family.

Nursing homes built with the dignity of the patient in mind, with single rooms and trained staff, where someone comes to die because we cared and not because we pushed them aside.

So here in part is my prescription for the NHS:
  • We need local doctor surgeries to be in modern buildings that offer a greater range of services to their patients.
  • We need more district nurses.
  • We need more paramedics.
  • We need more pharmacists, and a consulting room in every pharmacy.
  • We need more doctors
  • We need more palliative care nurses
Now up to now I hope you will see my list is mostly more people not more buildings, if we get the prevention right we would need less buildings so to speak.

But if we need to decide as to priorities in brick and mortar then that would be the need for more acute care nursing homes, to complement and build on the excellent work done by charities such as Marie Curie.

Now I know it wont be popular, but let's be clear beating about the bush...

......Community Hospitals are not the answer. know do try an keep up....

1 comment:

The Red Flag said...

I have to disagree. Community hospitals very much have a role I think - possibly it's the role that needs changing. Convalescence springs to mind for starters, another area would be bed-confining injuries that were non-life threatening and requiring a low level of clinical input. For example, I broke my leg very badly once. It was plated and screwed and I then had to spend a month bedridden while they waited for it all to settle down, stitches out, cast on. But for that month I required very very little in the way of clinical treatment. So, ideally I would have been rushed to a super-hospital, stabilised, surgery, settled, then moved to a community hospital closer to home.

Super hospitals, with a circle of community hospitals dispersed around them. The Community Hospitals basically being localised recovery wards for want of a better description.

You mention elderly. Part of the problem is we the public have not kept our side of the bargain. At the inception of the welfare state you worked till 65, retired and died 2-3 years later. Problem now is we aren't dying until 10 years later and we have only limited choices to redress that but to restore it we need to be working until our early 70's - but where will the jobs come from? For some bizarre reason most people think the economy will recover to pre-2008. They have yet to grasp that it isn't going to recover - it will decline further and for good and we are witnessing a massive transfer of wealth from the west to the east.