Tag Archives: GP

No ‘unsustainable’ pressure on the NHS? Then why are GPs threatening to strike?

Sajid Javid: behind the smug smile there appears to be no intelligence at all.

The following tweets appeared next to each other on my timeline:

It’s just more evidence that Sajid Javid was lying when he said pressure on the NHS due to Covid-19 was “not unsustainable” – as if we needed it, after Stephen Powis contradicted him during his own press conference on Wednesday:

GPs are under severe pressure due to the ongoing Covid-19 crisis – worsened by the government’s refusal to take action to reduce infections, in the face of increases past 50,000 a day and the worst death rate since March.

But Health Secretary Sajid Javid wants to compel them to hold face-to-face appointments with anybody who wants one – and is threatening to publicly humiliate surgeries that don’t meet targets he imposes.

As a result,

GPs in England are threatening industrial action in protest at the government’s attempt to force them to see any patient who wants a face-to-face appointment.

The British Medical Association’s GPs committee voted unanimously to reject the plan by the health secretary, Sajid Javid.

The doctors’ union has decided to hold a ballot on possible industrial action, which could result in family doctors at the 6,600 practices in England reducing the work they undertake.

So Javid’s interference is likely to make it less possible to see a GP personally. What a stupid way to run a health service.

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Javid announces scheme to blame GPs for lack of face-to-face appointments

Smug: Javid’s new scheme won’t do enough to help GPs cope with demand for face-to-face appointments – but he’ll be able to use it to blame them when they don’t.

The Tory Health Secretary has announced funding to “help” GPs arrange more face-to-face appointments with patients, in response to complaints from the public.

But there are huge problems with the scheme – of course there are; it’s a Tory plan to divert blame for short-changing the NHS onto people working in the service and away from themselves.

So before you watch the video clip, read Jonathan Ashworth’s comment – and then the  response below:

So it’s not enough money to make a real difference in each GP practice, and the cash is taken from existing budgets, meaning some other part of the NHS will lose out. Robbing Peter to pay Paul, as the saying goes.

And there’s no acknowledgement of the reasons GPs are under pressure in the first place – all connected to Tory deprivation:

So the Tory governments of 2010 onward cut funding, closed GP practices, and put people off training as doctors.

The Tories knew there was a lack of manpower in GP surgeries since at least 2016.

There are nearly 2,000 fewer GPs than six years ago and the Tory plan will do nothing to change this.

He is setting up your local GP surgery to take the blame for future failures.

And of course he is denying it (because he has already been challenged):

Strangely, despite the BBC’s tweet, none of Javid’s comments in the article address the issue. Perhaps it was mentioned in a previous draft and edited out by a Tory in the Corporation’s hierarchy?

Still, we can all see what’s going on:

Here’s a snapshot of the current situation that Javid’s scheme is unlikely to help:

And this is telling: if Javid’s scheme is so good, why has he cried off speaking at the annual conference of the Royal College of GPs?

Some of us may have satirical fun with it…

… but in context this is shocking hypocrisy from the Tories. Here’s David Shepherd to explain:

It’s a very good question. But it’s just another one that the Tories won’t answer.

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GP practice opts ALL patients out of NHS data giveaway. Ask yours to do the same

Here’s an interesting message, publicised by a civil servant at the Department of Health:

You’ll be aware that the Tories had been planning to pass private details of your mental and sexual health, criminal records, smoking and drinking habits to profiteers without telling you.

They had created a scam scheme in which they would hand over the medical histories of more than 55 million NHS England patients to profit-making organisations – unless the patients opted out.

But they never actually bothered to tell anybody what they were doing.

Instead, people found out through sites like this one – and kicked up such an outcry that the government announced it was delaying the data upload from the beginning of July to the beginning of September.

Announcing the delay, Health Minister Jo Churchill said ministers would use the extra time to “talk to doctors, patients and charities to strengthen the plan… and ensure data is accessed securely”.

I have no idea whether any of this has actually happened.

The message to Mr Thomas makes it clear that the government hasn’t been talking to patients, despite the assurance that it would.

It also suggests very strongly that whatever the government has been doing, it has made a liar of Ms Churchill.

So the action taken by his GP practice to opt all patients out seems entirely appropriate and I would urge anybody in England who has not received any communication about the plan from the government to contact your own GP practice and ask for it to do the same.

It’s what I’d be doing if I lived in England.

Friendly advice: This is important. Do it now – and don’t rely on anyone else to do it for you.

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GP surgeries are being privatised by the Tories. Do you really want your healthcare dictated by profit?


Doctors’ surgeries across the UK are being bought up and run for profit by private firms – including at least one from the United States.

American health insurance giant Centene has just taken over 49 NHS GP practices. In the last few years, they have bought NHS surgeries in Nottingham, Basingstoke, Milton Keynes, and Leeds. Yours could be next.

Centene appears to be a “bad actor” too – described by the Daily Mail as “profit greedy”.

In 2018, the company took control of a group of surgeries in Essex, including the historic Osler House surgery, founded in 1955. Soon after, Osler House was closed, leaving thousands of residents without a GP within 40 minutes’ drive from their house.

Healthcare provision doesn’t matter to them, you see. Their only concern is their profit.

In the US, Centene has been sued by thousands of people who bought insurance from them. Court papers showed that those people had “difficulty finding — in many cases cannot find — medical providers”.

Campaigning group We Own It said: “Your own local GP surgery or the local GP surgery your friends and family depend on may not be affected today. But if this takeover goes ahead, your GP surgery is not safe.

“Our local Clinical Commissioning Groups – the bodies that make local healthcare decisions in every area – can stop this.”

The group is urging you to sign a petition calling for an end to Boris Johnson’s privatisation of GP services, and for you to urge your family, friends and colleagues to sign it too. Will you?

The petition is here.

The choice is yours.

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Coronavirus – a small victory: NHS hospitals and GPs are warned against blanket ‘Do Not Revive’ policies

What some health workers wanted to prevent: a vulnerable elderly person using a ventilator while being treated for coronavirus.

This is a step in the right direction.

GP surgeries in south Wales and Brighton have both been reported to have issued letters telling multiple patients that their health conditions make them unlikely to be treated with a ventilator if they contract the coronavirus.

The letters advise that patients sign “Do Not Attempt Resuscitation” orders – in effect, their own death warrants.

But now, England’s chief nurse Ruth May and NHS England’s medical director Stephen Powis have told hospitals, GPs and NHS managers not to issue such letters.

This Site has already reported on a statement by the British Medical Association, Care Quality Commission and others, warning that blanket approaches are wrong.

And the Independent reports (see below) that legal advice shows such an approach would be unlawful.

The joint letter states: “The NHS constitution is clear that we should deliver care and support in a way that achieves dignity and compassion for each and every person we serve. We should be cognisant of the principle of equity of access for those who could benefit from treatment escalation, and the principle of support for autonomy for those who want to be involved in decisions.

“Even under pressure we strive for the delivery of personalised care and high standards of patient experience.”

So that’s that – we should hope.

Anybody who persists in foisting such alternative death warrants on vulnerable people should face the force of the law from now on.

Source: Coronavirus: England’s chief nurse and top doctor warn hospitals and GPs against imposing blanket do not resuscitate orders | The Independent

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Coronavirus discrimination: surgery asks chronically sick and disabled patients to refuse treatment

People with serious health conditions and disabilities who are registered with a GP surgery in Wales had a nasty surprise in the post.

The surgery sent them a letter saying if they caught the coronavirus, the best thing for them to do would be to reject treatment and wait for death – and it asked them to sign a form confirming it.

Llynfi Surgery, in Llynfi Road, Maesteg, sent the letter to patients with serious health conditions such as incurable cancer, motor neurone disease, and untreatable heart and lung conditions, on March 27.

It comes as further confirmation that people with disabilities will suffer adverse discrimination in the coronavirus crisis – that government guidance is to abandon them.

The letter states that people with these conditions are “unlikely to be offered hospital admission” if they become unwell with coronavirus and “certainly will not be offered a ventilator bed”.

It continued: “We would therefore like to complete a DNACPR form for you which we can share with the OOH [out of hours] GP services and which will mean that in the event of a sudden deterioration in your condition because of a Covid-19 infection or disease progression the emergency services will not be called and resuscitation attempts to restart your heart or breathing will not be attempted.”

Going on, it suggested that the “best option” for patients is to stay at home to be cared for by their family with “ongoing support from ourselves and community nursing services”.

It listed “benefits” to signing the DNACPR form:

  • “Your GP and more importantly your friends and family will know not to call 999”;
  • “Scarce ambulance resources can be targeted to the young and fit who have chance of surviving the infection”, and;
  • “The risk of transmitting the virus to friends, family and emergency responders from CPR (even chest compression alone) is very high. By having a DNACPR form in place you protect your family and emergency responders from this additional risk”.

The final line reads: “We will not abandon you but we need to be frank and realistic about what the next few months holds for all of us.”

Wales Online reported on this scandalous correspondence, saying that the local health board had contacted patients who were upset by the letter, to apologise and “answer any concerns”.

And both the Welsh Assembly member and MP have issued a joint statement saying this was “not a standard letter” and the board is working with the surgery “to offer compassionate and sound advice in the very best traditions of our health service”.

You’ll notice that there isn’t a single line in these comments that contradicts the suggestions in the letter.

If anything, it seems the authorities have simply been embarrassed that it has stated the facts about government guidance on long-term sick and disabled patients who contract the coronavirus in a blunt way.

The affair seems to be confirmation that the government is indeed using the coronavirus to cull “useless eaters”, in line with the eugenics beliefs of Boris Johnson and Dominic Cummings, and the Nazi-style persecution of people with long-term health issues that has been carried out by successive Conservative governments over the last decade.

Source: Surgery asks sickest patients to sign ‘do not attempt CPR’ form if they get Covid-19 – Wales Online

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Tories use coronavirus to put barrier between patients and NHS care

Future predicted: The 1980s drama Max Headroom featured a TV doctor who examined patients by video link. In the pilot we were treated to the sight of a patient dropping his trousers in readiness to show off his anal pustule. This seems to be the future that Matt Hancock is planning for the NHS – especially after he gave Amazon free access to all your medical information (I’m not sure if this is the patient from that show but it’s as close to that scene as I’m going! Note the “does not vote” label at the bottom).

The Conservatives have been trying to stop people actually going to see a doctor for years and now they’re using coronavirus to force it on us.

They want us to hold all our appointments by telephone or over the internet.

What an absolutely moronic idea. Only an imbecile would suggest that it was an improvement.

Matt Hancock said a current “digital-first” rollout will be extended across the country wherever “clinically and practically possible”.

He told MPs: “We’re taking steps of course to improve access by making sure people can access primary care in the best possible way.”

Draw your own conclusions about Mr Hancock!

This Writer is reminded of the pilot of Max Headroom (the SF drama, not the comedy video-jockey show) in which people use home video cameras to show their symptoms to a TV doctor.

In the show we’re treated to the sight of a man starting to drop his trousers in order to show the world his “anal pustule”. Charming.

But we live in a country that has aired Embarrassing Bodies, so one imagines that this is the sort of thing that has emboldened Mr Hancock.

As far as I’m concerned, we might as well look up our symptoms on Google. The result will be about as reliable.

In other words, I reckon this policy is a plan for preventable deaths (only affecting poor people, of course) and possibly even for the eruption of another epidemic; remote GPs aren’t going to recognise all the symptoms in the course of a brief call.

And how much are these calls going to cost the patient? The NHS is supposed to be free at the point of use!

Ultimately, we can see this as a transparent attempt to push the NHS closer to privatisation.

It will only take a few tragedies for the Tories to claim that the public health system isn’t working and commercial interests could carry out the duty much more responsibly (even though that has proved not to be the case in every single privatisation ever carried out by a Tory government).

Contemptible.

Source: Coronavirus: GP appointments to be held digitally where possible ‘with immediate effect’ – Mirror Online

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The new Tory government has imposed Nazi-style persecution of disabled people – on its very first day

Arbet macht frei: Boris Johnson’s policy for people with physical and mental disabilities is stolen from the Nazis.

This is how it’s going to be.

The Conservative government has started as it means to go on – by smashing the right of sick and disabled people to have sick notes signed by their doctors.

Claimants of sickness and disability benefits are now no longer permitted to decide for themselves whether the outcome of Work Capability Assessments should be shared with their doctor.

The DWP can now send letters to doctors, telling them not to sign patients’ sick notes if they have been found “fit for work”.

The new regulation overturns an option not to report the outcome of WCAs to GPs that was only included on the ESA50 claim form on December 5, after the Information Commissioner warned that omitting the option contravened data protection rules.

This is an example of the de-humanisation process that minorities undergo when they are to be persecuted by a malicious and despotic national government.

The Nazis took away the rights of Jews, for example.

Note that people are routinely found fit for work when their physical and/or mental health shows that they are not. This is therefore a move to override medical evidence, with only one logical purpose:

In order to inflict further and deeper harm on people who are already injured or ill.

People who voted Conservative are reminded that this is what they wanted.

It is a policy that follows the words of tinpot despot Boris Johnson earlier this year; he said working harder would help people with mental health disorders.

Fine words from a man who has never done a hard day’s work in his life!

This Writer will refrain from commenting on the crackpot Con-man’s mental condition.

Source: Tories use first day back to attack the disabled | Morning Star

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General election 2019: Tory pledge to boost GP numbers is baloney

Jeremy Corbyn is right on this – as he is on most aspects of politics.

Let’s all remember that Matt Hancock tweeted a claim that 1,000 new doctors had joined the NHS – and then quietly deleted it after the UK Statistics Authority pointed out that it was a lie.

In fact, according to The Independent, the situation is actually worse than when the Tories pledged to add 5,000 extra doctors, including trainees, to the GP workforce in 2015.

The newspaper has said that the September workforce figures show 5,460 places to be filled – an increase of 460 vacancies.

And now Mr Hancock reckons his party can get 6,000 more doctors into the NHS by 2024-25?

You’d have to be sick to believe him.

The Tories say they will deliver 6,000 more doctors in general practice in England by 2024-25 to increase patient appointments, if they win the election.

They claim they will reach that target through additional doctors working and training in surgeries, international recruitment and better retention.

However, Health Secretary Matt Hancock said a previous Tory pledge to recruit 5,000 GPs by 2020 had not been met.

Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said: “You can’t trust the Tories on the NHS.”

Source: General election 2019: Tory pledge to boost GP numbers – BBC News

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Tory election lies: Matt Hancock falsely claimed 1,100 more GPs had joined the NHS

Matt Hancock: Fanfare the falsehood, then quietly retract it later. Is that the plan?

Tory election tactics 2019:

1. Make a wildly extravagant claim.

2. Wait for it to be disproved.

3. Quietly delete the claim, hoping that more people will have believed it than seen it isn’t true.

This is what Matt Hancock has done.

His original tweet – last week – raised outrage from doctors and health groups who pointed out that the number of qualified doctors has fallen.

The UK Statistics Office intervened after receiving complaints.

Now Mr Hancock has deleted the tweet.

Where’s the public apology and retraction?

According to The Independent, the situation is actually worse than when the Tories pledged to add 5,000 extra doctors, including trainees, to the GP workforce in 2015.

The newspaper has said that the September workforce figures show 5,460 places to be filled – an increase of 460 vacancies.

As far as Mr Hancock is concerned, how much more wrong could he be?

Source: Health Secretary Matt Hancock deletes ‘1,000 more GPs’ claim after statistics watchdog censure | The Independent