Sunak offers to fine NHS patients who miss appointments – but how will it help?

Last Updated: August 2, 2022By Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Rishi Sunak: Avaricious and ambitious.

Conservative – and therefore UK – leadership candidate Rishi Sunak has made an offer to help clear the NHS backlog. On the face of it, the plan has flaws:

Whataboutery aside, is there any merit in the idea? Probably not.

It seems that, like many Tory cruelties, it proposes an overly-simplistic solution to a complicated problem, that is more likely to make matters worse than help anybody at all:

According to Dr Patterson, above – and reading between the lines, what is actually needed is research to find out why these people are missing their appointments and help with the causes of their problems.

And Sunak is never likely to offer that.

It would cost money, rather than raising it.

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  1. PETE August 2, 2022 at 9:25 am - Reply


  2. nivekd August 2, 2022 at 9:32 am - Reply

    It’s a step along the way. The logic is not simply to have fines but rather to charge for appointments in the first place. In fact that’s well on its way. They have abolished a NATIONAL health service in England and replaced it with 42 local variants, the so-called integrated care systems (ICS). Already this morning Truss is supporting this postcode lottery health service by proposing regional cuts in nurses’ pay which is the main way the ICS will deal with their deficits – along with regional variations in the services offered, the buildings in which we are treated – AND which ones we have to pay for.

  3. Valerie Peverett August 2, 2022 at 9:57 am - Reply

    Don’t think the amount would put many people off.

  4. Hecuba August 2, 2022 at 11:14 am - Reply

    Sunak’s proposal to fine patients is just another money grabbing wheeze from the money obsessed fascist tories!

    The fascist tories will not enact any policy which would provide real help to patients who are finding it impossible to keep their GP appointments. This would cost public money and the fascist tories believe our public money is their private ‘money bank!’

  5. kateuk August 3, 2022 at 8:19 am - Reply

    The thin end of the wedge. First you fine for non attendance, then you charge for attending.

  6. El Dee August 4, 2022 at 1:47 am - Reply

    People like Lord Winston have been suggesting this for years despite being a Labour lord and never having been a GP. This is one of those policies that raises its head every so often and gets forgotten about because everyone thinks it’s a bad idea. I think it’s unlikely to go ahead now, not because they wouldn’t do it, but because those deciding on the next leadership won’t put Sunak in the position to enact it.

    Aside from any polling most of us thought it very unlikely that Sunak would get the votes. Racism in the Tory membership would prevent it and, having seen screenshots on Reddit from Tory groups, I can confirm there is open racist hostility to him very definitely based on his colour and heritage and not his policies..

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