Tag Archives: bed

Coronavirus: Failure to answer a simple question about NHS cuts shows depth of Tory health betrayal

Gove: he always looks a little gobsmacked but his response to this question has to be seen.

It was a stroke of genius: a simple question from the press that skewered Michael Gove and NHS boss Simon Stevens over cuts to the health service since 2010.

Andy Woodcock, editor of The Independent, used a televised press conference to ask whether the government regretted cutting the number of NHS beds and failing to increase the number of nurses.

It was a valid question, because the NHS has lost more than 11,000 beds since 2010 as a result of Tory cuts and closures. Last I heard, private health providers were set to make £2.4 million per day by renting 8,000 beds to the public provider.

Why not just nationalise them, as has been done in other countries?

And Brexit alone has cost the UK 10,000 nurses since 2016.

You can watch the video on Skwawkbox to see the response – stunned silence from Gove and stumbling dissembling from Stevens.

This is exactly the kind of question that the press should have been asking the Tory governments of the last few years, but haven’t.

Better late than never, some might say.

Let’s just hope they keep it up.

Source: Video: simple question on the effect of NHS cuts leaves Gove gobsmacked and reduces NHS boss Stevens to gibberish | The SKWAWKBOX

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

Coronavirus: Hotel housing for rough sleepers – but how do B&B users self-isolate?

Endangered: People who sleep on the streets are more likely to catch coronavirus, and more likely to have respiratory conditions that make them vulnerable to serious harm if they do catch it.

This may strike fools as foolish but the wise will understand.

People who live on the streets are as likely to catch the coronavirus as anybody – more so, as they have no way of isolating themselves and the virus can be airborne.

They are more likely to have underlying health conditions including respiratory diseases, which could make the effect of coronavirus on them far more serious.

And if they remain on the streets, they are equally likely to transmit the virus to many more people.

Soup kitchens and day centres have been closing with little or no warning.

So the Mayor of London’s office is to be applauded for booking rooms with the Intercontinental Hotels Group to ensure that homeless people have space to self-isolate.

The Big Issue has taken its vendors off the streets; supporters will be asked to provide funding online for the duration of the crisis.

But there are concerns over families who have been placed in temporary accommodation like bed & breakfast establishments by councils that could not find permanent homes for them.

That’s a fault of Tory governments, of course; council houses have been sold off without enough cash being provided for replacements to be built.

And Tory policies are likely to have put people in need of accommodation in the first place – because of the Bedroom Tax or wage depression, or other policies that clamp down on the vulnerable.

So again we see that Tory short-sightedness has endangered people.

Source: Coronavirus UK: Rough sleepers will be housed in central London hotels | Metro News

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

Coronavirus UK: Are the Tories deliberately trying to increase the hysteria?

Only one element unifies the constant babble about coronavirus from the UK’s Tory government at the moment: it is contradictory, confusing and seems designed to increase hysteria, rather than reduce it.

For a start: what’s with the policy of drip-feeding information via individuals or single media sites, rather than broadcasting updates to everyone in regular press conferences and on the government website?

Today we see Matt Hancock – behind a paywall – on the Torygraph website, contradicting the government’s announcement last week that the Tories would be seeking to establish ‘herd immunity’ by allowing us all to be infected, thereby condemning the oldest and weakest of us to death.

Here is that article in full. The Telegraph‘s owners should be run out of the country for putting profit before lives:

That previous announcement was made by scientific advisor Patrick Vallance. His latest advice is in The Sun. I haven’t seen it because I won’t willingly visit that paper’s website and the physical copies are only good to be snapped up by people who need toilet paper as a result of the government-induced panic-buying we’ve all seen.

Robert Peston has been parrotting information he’s been given. Did he even know it was accurate before he repeated it? My understanding is no.

Is it, as Carole Cadwalladr suggests, an attempt to avoid these leaks being attributed to individual ministers who can then be questioned over the validity of their decisions?

Worse still is the claim that people attacking this strategy are “politicising” the corona crisis.

We had this after This Site pointed out the political implications of the Grenfell Tower inferno, back in 2017. I was vindicated, of course – Grenfell has been a scandal that has rumbled on to this very day.

The simple fact is that coronavirus is already political. As Grace Blakely points out here, people have already died as a result of political decisions and the only question is whether those decisions can reduce the toll.

At the moment, it seems that Boris Johnson and his government, by flip-flopping through the crisis, adopting one strategy for a couple of days and then denying it in favour of another, are doing everything they can to create chaos, boost hysteria and ramp up the human cost.

Consider South Korea, the country generally accepted to have got the best grip on the spread of coronavirus. Here’s Foreign Minister Kang Kyung-wha explaining to Andrew Marr that testing people for the virus is vital… followed by a tweet showing that the UK government has abandoned that vital testing:

Is this a death sentence for old and vulnerable people?

Oh – and apparently the old and vulnerable could be arrested if they don’t quarantine themselves:

So it seems we’re being faced with a situation in which the people most vulnerable to the virus are being told to hide themselves away from society for weeks at a time.

What happens then? Will we see government vans roaming our streets and suburbs, calling for you to “Bring out your dead”?

There will be a knock-on effect again food banks, most of which have already been harmed by the panic-buying spree:

So the “Bring out your dead” vans will remain gainfully employed, picking up the bodies of the underpaid workers whose wages the Tories have been sitting on for so many years.

Evidence is piling up to show that the National Health Service – weakened to a constant crisis point by 10 years of Tory underfunding – is simply unable to cope with the extra workload of thousands (if not millions) of COVID-19 patients. This is the opinion of the British Medical Association, as you can see here.

Already Hancock has admitted that the service doesn’t have enough ventilators:

So he’s trying to buy some more, or get manufacturers to make them:

But it’s an ill wind that blows no good to anybody: the Tories’ friends in private medicine are set to rake in £2.4 million every day, loaning out 8,000 beds to the NHS.

That’s more than 3,000 fewer beds than the Tories closed between 2010 and 2017 (I have yet to find figures leading up to the present day)!

Meanwhile, the crisis is revealing hard truths about ourselves:

There is only one conclusion to draw from the above: Don’t trust the Tory government. You’ll be putting your life in the hands of people who simply couldn’t care less.

I think it was Tim Fenton, on his Zelo Street blog, who said Boris Johnson, Dominic Cummings and their cronies simply aren’t equipped to provide information; they offer information warfare – strong on falsehood and misinformation. And they can’t seem to stop.

Call me a raging conspiracy theorist if you like, but the thought has crossed my mind that everything we’re experiencing right now could be a sign of Johnson putting those eugenics ideas into practise – you know, the ideas about cleaning the gene pool of weaknesses and impurities for which Andrew Sabisky had to resign his job as a government advisor. We have enough evidence to conclude that Johnson supports those views, as does Cummings.

So we can’t trust the government.

How about relying on something we’ve had a lot longer.

Where’s our common sense? People have had to cope with disease epidemics – of this very kind – for centuries. Why not go back to tried-and-trusted remedies, at least while the politicians and the medics try to sort themselves out?

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

Council spending on accommodation for homeless families is now EIGHT TIMES more than 10 years ago

Do you remember the Tory housing revolution back in the 1980s? I do.

Margaret Thatcher told us she wanted the UK to be a “nation of home-owners”, and I’m sure she also told us it would be cheaper on the nation as councils would no longer have to build and maintain social housing.

Nearly 40 years on, what has happened?

The UK is a nation in thrall to private landlords whose prices are unaffordable to most people – especially after more than nine years of Tory wage depression and benefit cuts.

Result: Councils spent nearly £100 million providing bed-and-breakfast accommodation for homeless households (it is their statutory duty).

That money could have been spent on council services instead. Next time you get angry at your council for failing to provide, put the blame on Mrs Thatcher!

Provision of social housing has always been the cheapest option for dealing with poverty and homelessness.

It cuts crime – both by and against people who don’t have homes, meaning our police forces are less stretched.

It cuts strain on the health service – there is less violent crime against the homeless, and there is less likelihood of homeless people falling prey to disease.

And it provides income to local authorities that otherwise have to pay out increasing amounts to private landlords to put a metaphorical sticking-plaster over this wound on our society.

The Tory government response to this crisis (see below) is derisory; it wants councils to put themselves in debt in order to provide new housing, meaning they’ll be starved of even more cash.

There’s only one way to end the housing crisis – and that is regime change.

We need a radical change of government.

And we’ll get it soon, if enough people see past the anti-Corbyn propaganda and vote Labour.

Remember: Jeremy Corbyn is the only leader who said his ambition is “a home for everyone”.

Spending by councils on housing families in bed and breakfast accommodation has surged by 780 per cent in a decade, prompting renewed calls for urgent action to mitigate the housing crisis.

An analysis of official data by the Local Government Association (LGA) revealed cash-strapped local authorities had to spend £93.3m on B&Bs for homeless households last year, up from £10.6m in 2009-10.

Campaigners said families were “paying the ultimate price” for successive governments’ failure to build social homes, and urged ministers to adapt welfare reforms to protect families at risk of becoming homeless.

Councils only use bed and breakfasts as a last resort, but the continued loss of social housing was leaving many with no alternative in which to house homeless families, the LGA said.

There are currently 7,040 households in bed and breakfast accommodation – up from 2,450 a decade ago, an increase of 187 per cent.

A spokesperson for the Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government said: “Everyone should have somewhere safe to live and to support those most in need we have removed the borrowing cap, freeing up councils to double housing delivery to around 10,000 new social homes a year by 2021/22.

“We’ve also targeted funding to reduce the number of households in temporary accommodation and in two years we’ve helped councils to reduce the number of families in B&Bs for more than six weeks by 28 per cent.”

Source: Council spending on B&Bs for homeless families up 780% in a decade, figures show | The Independent

Have YOU donated to my crowdfunding appeal, raising funds to fight false libel claims by TV celebrities who should know better? These court cases cost a lot of money so every penny will help ensure that wealth doesn’t beat justice.

https://www.crowdjustice.com/case/mike-sivier-libel-fight/


Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

Universal Credit horror stories: ‘Benefit’ may be contributing to hospital bed-blocking

A motorcyclist who lost his leg and almost died in a horrific crash was told he was “not ill enough” to warrant a hospital visit to set up the benefits payments needed for him to return home.

Doctors said Steve Cruickshank was “lucky to be alive” after a collision between his Honda Firestorm and a van in the Guild Street area of Aberdeen in July.

He has been recovering in hospital since, as he suffered several serious injuries and had his right leg amputated.

But the ordeal was worsened following a string of delays in arranging the Universal Credit benefit payments he needs to adapt his property.

As the situation wore on he feared becoming a bed-blocker at Woodend Hospital, where he is receiving physiotherapy in the hopes of getting out next month with a prosthetic limb.

Read on: Amputee fears becoming hospital bed-blocker over benefits blunders | Press and Journal

Visit our JustGiving page to help Vox Political’s Mike Sivier fight anti-Semitism libels in court


Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

This baby died after her life-saving operation was cancelled three times due to a lack of beds

Iris Ann Day died after a life-saving operation was cancelled three times.

Is this the “good news of the National Health Service” that Theresa May was applauding at Prime Minister’s Questions on Wednesday (November 15)?

Jeremy Corbyn had pointed out that last week, the chief executive of NHS England, Simon Stevens, wrote: “The budget for the NHS next year is well short of what is currently needed.”

He said: “The A&E waiting time target has not been met for two years. The 62-day cancer waiting time target has not been met since 2015. So, again, can the Prime Minister spend the next week ensuring that the Budget does give sufficient funding to our NHS to meet our people’s needs?”

Mrs May responded scornfully:

“Yes, let us look at what Simon Stevens says about the national health service: ‘The quality of NHS care is demonstrably improving…Outcomes of care for most major conditions are dramatically better than three or five or ten years ago.’

“He said: ‘What’s been achieved in England over the past three years? More convenient access to primary care services…First steps to expand the primary care workforce…Highest cancer survival rates ever…Big expansion in cancer check-ups.’

“And: ‘Public satisfaction with hospital inpatients…at its highest for more than two decades.’

“That is the good news of our national health service.”

Those words ring hollow now.

And what will Mrs May do, now that we know she was talking utter claptrap at PMQs?

I’ll tell you: Absolutely nothing.

She couldn’t care less about a poor person’s dead baby.

A six-month-old baby girl suffering from a heart defect died after a life-saving operation was cancelled three times due to a lack of beds, an inquest heard.

Iris Ann Day was born with Down Syndrome and an atrio-ventricular septal defect – a hole in her heart which causes blood to flow around it.

The condition was discovered when her mother Hannah was 36 weeks pregnant, when doctors said she would need surgery at around three months old.

It was arranged under the care of Evelina London Children’s Hospital but put back on three occasions – once because of a lack of beds at the hospital’s intensive care unit.

Iris died on December 2 2016, just hours after her parents were told she was “stable and settled”.

Source: 6-month-old baby died after life-saving operation cancelled 3 times due to lack of beds | The London Economic


Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

Winter is coming: Battle lines are drawn in the NHS

Staff in the A&E department of Birmingham’s Queen Elizabeth hospital [Image: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images].

Does anybody seriously believe the National Health Service is ready for the winter onslaught on its services, while it continues to be run by Conservatives?

If so, think again. Already the news hacks are laying out the territory on which the service’s next battle for credibility will be fought.

Read:

The NHS is deep into planning for what many worry will be an even tougher winter than last year.

Improvements are being outweighed by a combination of increasing risks and NHS trusts are worried that they do not have enough staff, beds and other services to manage the risk to patient safety this winter.

They point to several factors: the relentless rises we are seeing in demand on A&E and other key services; growing staff shortages; and greater financial pressure, which means trusts are less able to afford the extra capacity they urgently need. The relentless rise in demand has also meant that some “escalation” beds – put in place as a winter contingency – are still in use even during the summer. Despite all the effort at local and national level, performance against the four-hour A&E standard is no better at this point than it was last year. The reality at the frontline is that winter never really went away.

But, perhaps most important of all, the government’s plan that the NHS would consistently benefit from the £1bn of extra support for social care – trying to get a double benefit from the same pot of money – has not worked.

Source: The NHS needs more money now or the country will face another winter of discontent | Chris Hopson | Opinion | The Guardian

Read:

Chris Hopson, chief executive of NHS Providers, said: “Last winter the health service came under pressure as never before. This winter could be worse.”

Mr Hopson said feedback from his members showed that delays in discharging patients, and workforce shortages, were hampering their efforts.

He pointed out that the NHS budget had increased by only 1.3% this year compared to a 5% rise in demand.

He said the Office of Budget Responsibility had estimated that the NHS would still have a £15bn funding shortfall by 2020.

Mr Hopson said: “There’s a bit of a myth running around that somehow if the NHS could be that bit more efficient or a lot more productive we wouldn’t need to put this extra money in.

“Of course we should find more productivity and efficiency, but it’s not going to close anything like that size of gap.”

The call for more money comes ahead of a meeting of NHS leaders and Prime Minister Theresa May, which is expected to take place next week.

Source: The worst is yet to come for the NHS – hospital chiefs | BBC News


Here are four ways to be sure you’re among the first to know what’s going on.

1) Register with us by clicking on ‘Subscribe’ (in the left margin). You can then receive notifications of every new article that is posted here.

2) Follow VP on Twitter @VoxPolitical

3) Like the Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/VoxPolitical/

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

4) You could even make Vox Political your homepage at http://voxpoliticalonline.com

And do share with your family and friends – so they don’t miss out!

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

Vox Political readers overwhelmingly reject plan to send NHS patients to private hospitals

zyourhealthruined

The results are in – and they could not be more decisive.

Yesterday (November 26), This Writer reported on a plan to send NHS patients in England to private hospitals for operations. I pointed out that the NHS currently spends £600 million a year correcting botched private operations and questioned the wisdom of paying private capital, possibly to drain even more money from the public service through incompetence.

Then I asked two questions: Is it safe to hand NHS operations over to private health companies? and Is it safe to discharge patients from hospital early, in order to free up beds?

After nearly 26 hours, the results are beyond question.

No less than 97.14 per cent of respondents – 714 of you – rejected the plan for private health to carry out operations. Only 12 people – 1.56 per cent of respondents – thought it would be safe.

And 95.35 per cent of respondents – 615 of you – said patients should not be discharged early. Just seven people – 1.08 per cent of respondents – thought sending patients home early would be safe.

I should add that, while the results are not scientific in that the respondents are not known to be a representative sample of UK citizens, efforts were made to publicise the poll to people with a wide range of political views.

Considering the emphatic nature of the response, This Writer will communicate it to the Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt. It will be interesting to see how he justifies a policy that has hardly any support at all among the public.

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

POLL: Is it safe to hand NHS operations over to private healthcare?

NHS bosses have told hospitals to pass some scheduled surgery to the private sector, it has been reported [Image: Dominic Lipinski/PA].

NHS bosses have told hospitals to pass some scheduled surgery to the private sector, it has been reported [Image: Dominic Lipinski/PA].

I think this is the stupidest idea yet, in a long list of boneheaded ideas that Tories have had about the National Health Service in England. I suspect Jeremy Hunt is behind it.

(It has to be a Tory idea, doesn’t it? No NHS professional in their right mind would make such a suggestion? Or do you know otherwise? If so, please name names in the comment column.)

It is only a matter of days since This Writer pointed out that the National Health Service takes 6,000 patients per year from private hospitals, in order to put right botched operations.

The cost of this corrective surgery is £100,000 each time, meaning the public purse is paying £600 million every year to put right botched private operations.

And we’re told the NHS will pay private providers – handsomely – for what may be a wholly sub-standard service.

Only yesterday, a good friend of mine told me about a relative of his who had a hysterectomy at a private hospital – because the waiting list for it on the NHS was too long.

She started complaining of pain immediately after the operation and was eventually admitted to an NHS hospital for an emergency corrective operation – in which doctors found a rolled-up cloth had been left in her abdomen.

If that is the kind of treatment a paying patient can expect from private healthcare, what can NHS patients expect?

Not only that, but we’re being told that thousands of patients will be discharged to relieve the demand for hospital beds; this clearly indicates that they will be sent home too soon.

If I were one of the patients affected, or a member of their family, I would want to see the evidence supporting any such discharge. What support will be in place for them after they are removed from the hospital setting and how quickly can they expect help if complications arise?

There seems to be no information about that.

So it is time for another couple of POLLS!

Here’s the first:

And here’s the second:

I’ll publish the initial results in 24 hours’ time – around 2pm on November 27.

Hospitals have been told to discharge thousands of patients and pass some scheduled surgery to private organisations to reduce pressure ahead of a potential winter crisis, it was reported.Leaked memos also revealed that managers have been banned from declaring black alerts, the highest level, when hospital services are unable to cope with demand, the Daily Telegraph said.

The newspaper claimed instructions were sent by NHS England and the regulator NHS Improvement last month to reduce the levels of bed occupancy in hospitals, which are the most crowded they have ever been ahead of winter.

In the three months to the end of September, 89.1% of acute and general beds were full, compared with 87% last year, prompting the order for hospital trusts to take the drastic measures.

The goal is to reduce occupancy levels down to the recommended safe limit of 85% from December 19 to January 16, the Telegraph said.

Source: Send patients to private sector to avert winter crisis, hospitals told | Society | The Guardian

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook

Government policies have led to huge rise in malnutrition – again

‘Poverty is causing vulnerable people … to go hungry and undernourished,’ shadow health secretary says [Image: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images].

‘Poverty is causing vulnerable people … to go hungry and undernourished,’ shadow health secretary says [Image: Christopher Furlong/Getty Images].

This is a perennial – one of those stories that comes back to haunt us every year.

When I covered it last year, we were being told that 43 hospital trusts had recorded more than 2,000 malnutrition cases, we were told that parents were going hungry in order to feed their children.

But there are more than 43 NHS trusts and, if we take the figures at face value, then the average hospital stay of 22 or 23 days means more than 8,200 people may have been treated for malnutrition in 2015-16.

Now the claim is that elderly people are the largest affected group, due to the loss of meals on wheels services in many local authority areas.

Personally, I think this phenomenon deserves far greater scrutiny than the Department of Health seems willing to give it.

161127-malnutrition-stats

Doesn’t anyone find it suspicious that hospital admissions for malnutrition started to rise in the year that Employment and Support Allowance, with its accompanying – and cruel – Work Capability Assessment test, was introduced?

We are seeing a huge rise in malnutrition due to Conservative Government policy, causing a preventable demand for hospital beds and putting a preventable strain on the National Health Service.

Any government worth a bean would take action to halt any increase in malnutrition among its citizens – especially if there was even the slightest suggestion that it was a political policy that had caused it.

The Conservative Party seems to revel in the ill-health it is causing.

You’ll recall that, when the Tories were considering re-defining poverty, their chosen indicators were “entrenched worklessness, family breakdown, problem debt, and drug and alcohol dependency”. Malnutrition was nowhere to be seen on their list and therefore would not have been measured or included in poverty statistics.

But then, it isn’t included in the figures now.

Tory policies have necessitated the loss of meals on wheels services in areas where the local council can no longer afford them. Tory policies have ensured that poor families do not have enough money to pay for a roof over their heads and food for every family member. Tory policies have increased the harshness of ESA decisions while cutting the amount payable.

Tory policies are cutting the number of NHS beds available to patients and the quality of the service they receive.

Can anybody offer a reasonable excuse for their reluctance to change those policies?

The number of hospital beds in England taken up by patients being treated for malnutrition has almost trebled over the last 10 years, in what charities say shows the “genuinely shocking” extent of hunger and poor diet.

Official figures reveal that people with malnutrition accounted for 184,528 hospital bed days last year, a huge rise on 65,048 in 2006-07. The sharp increase is adding to the pressures on hospitals, which are already struggling with record levels of overcrowding.

The Department of Health figures showed that the number of bed days accounted for by someone with a primary or secondary diagnosis of malnutrition rose from 128,361 in 2010-11, the year the coalition came to power, to 184,528 last year – a 61% rise over five years.

Figures are not available for exactly how many patients accounted for the 184,528 bed days last year, but information supplied to Ashworth by the House of Commons library shows that 57% of the patients were women and that 42% were over-65s.

Such patients only account for one in 256 of all hospital bed days, or 0.4% of the 47.3m total, but the financial cost is considerable as each bed costs the NHS an average of £400 a day to staff and given the condition each spell in hospital lasts an average of 22 to 23 days.

Critics have said the upward trend is a result of rising poverty, deep cutbacks in recent years to meals on wheels services for the elderly and inadequate social care support, especially for older people.

Freedom of information requests submitted to local councils in England early last year by the then shadow care minister Liz Kendall found that 220,000 fewer people were receiving meals on wheels in late 2014 than in 2010, a fall of 63%.

Research by the National Association of Care Catering found that only 48% of local councils still provided meals on wheels, compared to 66% in 2014. Only 17% of councils in the north-west of England still do so, and 91% of providers expect the provision to fall further in the next year.

Jonathan Ashworth, the shadow health secretary, unearthed the figures in a response to a recent parliamentary question submitted to the health minister Nicola Blackwood.

“These figures paint a grim picture of Britain under the Conservatives,” he said. “Real poverty is causing vulnerable people, particularly the elderly, to go hungry and undernourished so much so that they end up in hospital.”

Source: Huge rise in hospital beds in England taken up by people with malnutrition | Society | The Guardian

Join the Vox Political Facebook page.

If you have appreciated this article, don’t forget to share it using the buttons at the bottom of this page. Politics is about everybody – so let’s try to get everybody involved!

Vox Political needs your help!
If you want to support this site
(
but don’t want to give your money to advertisers)
you can make a one-off donation here:

Donate Button with Credit Cards

Buy Vox Political books so we can continue
fighting for the facts.


The Livingstone Presumption is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

Health Warning: Government! is now available
in either print or eBook format here:

HWG PrintHWG eBook

The first collection, Strong Words and Hard Times,
is still available in either print or eBook format here:

SWAHTprint SWAHTeBook