Tag Archives: operation

Are bookies targeting disabled people?

Money: People who become disabled due to medical mess-ups get big compensation payments. Are bookies trying to get them to gamble it all away?

If bookmakers allowed one severely disabled man, feeding his gambling addiction until they had taken everything he had, how many others are getting the same treatment?

The Guardian is reporting that Ladbrokes Coral and Paddy Power are accused of fuelling Liam McCarron’s gambling addiction until he had squandered his compensation from a botched operation that left him severely disabled.

It is alleged that they helped him fill out betting slips as he frittered away his payout.

By the time he was eventually barred from gambling, his losses amounted to half a million pounds.

The firms say they didn’t do anything wrong.

But here’s the question:

How many other people with severe disabilities are losing their cash in the same way? And are they being targeted?

Source: Bookmakers ‘helped gambling addict squander injury compensation’ | Society | The Guardian

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Corbyn’s Labour can’t be blamed if Johnson uses Yellowhammer to launch a coup. Here’s why…

Jeremy Corbyn is not Boris Johnson: and he wouldn’t enable that man to start a dictatorship – unlike his forerunner Tony Blair.

Apparently it is possible for Boris Johnson to use Tony Blair’s Civil Contingencies Act to bypass democracy in the case of a “no deal” Brexit.

It seems some people – you know, media/Establishment types – want to use that connection to smear the current Labour Party as dictatorship-enablers, if it comes to that.

Fortunately, Beastrabban is around to put a stop to all that – at least for those who read his criminally-neglected site which you can find here.

He states that the CCA

allows the government to bypass parliament and over-ride existing legislation by having “a senior Minister of the Crown” issue “temporary emergency regulations”, valid for 30-day renewable stretches. It even enables habeas corpus to be over-ridden – as well as the Bill of Rights, the succession ot the monarchy, the five-year time limit on parliaments and the checks on a prime minister’s power to appoint an unlimited number of peers.

Compare this with the behaviour of the Nazis after the Reichstag fire in the 1930s:

[They declared] a state of emergency, and immediately seized power. In the following weeks the other parties and the trade unions were banned, Hitler declared Fuhrer, and the anti-Semitic legislation put in place. Jews, gypsies and political prisoners were rounded up and sent to the concentration camps.

But this cannot be used against the current Labour Party because it was passed by Tony Blair:

Blair was a Thatcherite, and his policies reflected the demands of the right-wing political and industrial elite. He ignored the party’s base in favour of political donors, who were allowed to shape government policy and even staff government departments. He obeyed the City’s demands for light financial regulation, listened to the same right-wing think tanks and private healthcare companies that influenced Peter Lilley and John MajorAnd he was also guided by the right-wing, Tory press, particularly Murdoch’s vile rags.

Since then, however, the leadership of the Labour party has changed. And Jeremy Corbyn has a very strong record of voting against the government, including Blair’s. If anyone can be trusted to block the operation of this pernicious legislation, it’s him.

If you want further information about the loyalties of Tony Blair…

Blair was also anti-democratic in that he tried to pass legislation establishing secret courts, in which the normal laws of evidence did not apply if the government decided that it was for reasons of national security. The press and public were to be excluded from these trials. Defendants and their counsel need not be told, contrary to natural justice, who their accuser was or what the evidence against them was.

But Blair was not alone in trying to pass this. When they got in, the Tory-Lib Dem coalition actually did it.

And the coalition also removed the right of habeas corpus.

So much for the Tories’ and Lib Dems’ concern to preserve  constitutional government and Britons’ historic civil liberties.

That pretty much puts the seal on Tony Blair’s loyalties – and on the reasons we should all ensure Boris Johnson never has a chance to invoke the CCA. Right?

Source: Johnson’s Yellowhammer Coup – Prepared by New Labour? | Beastrabban\’s Weblog

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Rip-off parasites urge Bristol GPs to push patients towards paid operations – accelerating plunge to privatisation

Emerson’s Green Treatment Centre is run by UKSH, owned by Care UK.

It’s bad enough that NHS patients across the UK are being told they can jump the queue for GP appointments by paying to see a private doctor instead.

But now the company running an NHS treatment centre in Bristol has decided to use it for profit as well as service, and is asking GPs in the city to push the service onto their patients.

This betrayal is exactly what we knew was coming; in line with ‘nudge’ theory, the profit-grubbers are nudging us into paying for private health care.

This would not be possible if the Conservative government had not spent the last seven years de-funding the NHS in order to worsen the service and push desperate patients into the arms of the rip-off merchants.

Yes – rip-off merchants. We are already paying for our health care. If the government is pushing us into paying for a profit-making company to provide a service we have already funded, that is a rip-off.

The sooner Labour gets back into office and strips out the parasites, the better.

GPs in Bristol have been given a shopping list of self-paid operations to offer their patients so they can avoid NHS waiting lists.

The operations, while freely available on the NHS, are also being offered by company Care UK for up to £9,000 at their Emersons Green treatment centre.

Care UK, owned by private equity firm Bridgepoint, are one of the largest care companies in the country. They already provide these services for free to patients on the NHS at Emersons Green but they say their new self-pay scheme will let those who can afford it get around “the pressure of growing waiting lists” and gives GPs “greater options to discuss with patients”.

But campaign groups and Bristol GPs have expressed their anger at being asked to recommend the paid procedures – one doctor called it “part of the dismantling of healthcare”.

Source: GPs in Bristol urged to encourage patients to pay to beat NHS waiting lists for routine operations – Bristol Post


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‘Establishment’ tried to block Heath paedophile inquiry, says police chief who ran it

The police chief has called for an investigation into claims of a child-sex ring being covered up by the establishment [Image: Craig Hibbert].

Wiltshire Chief Constable Mike Veale is to be praised for refusing to give in to ‘Establishment’ bullying.

He is calling for an inquiry into allegations that there is, or has been, a Westminster child sex ring – claiming that strenuous efforts have been made to undermine his inquiries regarding former prime minister Edward Heath.

This Writer would say that indicates an inquiry should go ahead at the earliest opportunity.  Wouldn’t you?

In his first major interview since the release of a report which said seven child abuse allegations against Sir Edward – including the rape of an 11-year-old boy – would warrant questioning the former Prime Minister under caution were he still alive, [Wiltshire Chief Constable Mike Veale has]

Called for a new inquiry to ‘lance the boil’ of ‘sinister’ claims that a Westminster child-sex ring was covered up by the Establishment;

Said he could have spent ‘two or three’ more years investigating Sir Edward if his officers had been allowed to dig deeper;

Attacked ‘sickening’ suggestions that the sexual abuse of ‘rent boys’ and those ravaged by drugs or alcohol was less serious than cases involving ‘wealthy people from Middle England’.

He says a ‘relentless campaign by the Establishment’ to undermine him over the Heath inquiry caused him ‘the most stress and soul-searching I’ve had in 30 years. There were some dark days’.

‘It can be quite sinister. I was told early on in Conifer, “You’ll lose your job, the Establishment will get you”. I’m not a conspiracy theorist. I don’t believe in Martians. I used to think, “What are these people on about?” ’

Asked if the Heath inquiry had changed his mind, Mr Veale replies in a flash: ‘Yes.’

Is he really suggesting allegations of a wider Westminster paedophile ring – dismissed as fantasy after a separate inquiry into ex-Home Secretary Leon Brittan and others collapsed – could be true? Each word of his reply is delivered as carefully and as slowly as a PC stalking a burglar.

‘If any, if even one bit of this [Conifer] is true, what did the Government know, the Civil Service, the security services? Those questions need to be answered.’

Source: Ted Heath police chief calls for a new inquiry into a Westminster child-sex ring ‘covered up’ by the Establishment


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NHS spends £600m a year fixing botched ops by private healthcare – and Hunt praises the privateers

Jeremy Hunt: He thinks the NHS is bad because it doesn't have marble foyers.

Jeremy Hunt: He thinks the NHS is bad because it doesn’t have marble foyers.

Why on Earth should the best healthcare system in the world seek “inspiration” from the worst?

It should not. The only reason Jeremy Hunt is making that claim is, he’s so deeply involved with private health he probably needs a paid doctor to help screw him into his underwear in the morning.

His claim that there are diminishing resources (read: funds) for the NHS makes sense only in the context of his belief that health should be a profit-making industry.

But the instant you start clawing back money in search of that profit, you start harming service users. We have evidence of this from the past four years of Tory cuts and sell-offs.

Let’s look at this “revered” Mayo clinic, with its marble foyers. Marble foyers? Clearly this organisation is charging a fortune for its services and investing the money, not in clinical care, but in cosmetic augmentations.

There’s no room in the NHS for that kind of nonsense.

And Hunt wants us to believe that these fabled marble foyers have something to do with “quality and safety”?

He needs proper medical care to bring him to his senses.

The fact is that quality and safety were built into the NHS, right up until his forerunner, Andrew Lansley, passed a law to gut the service and hand its vital organs over to the privateers – and their marble foyers.

Quality and safety are part of the NHS right now – except in areas Mr Hunt has decided to starve of funds, because he wants people to think publicly-funded health provision isn’t as good as that provided by an expensive firm of profit-making money-grubbers with marble foyers.

Oh, and it may interest you to know that Mr Hunt used his King’s Fund speech to complain about the cost of cleaning up patients who are left with infections or complications after operations – around £100,000.

But who, exactly, hands over 6,000 patients per year to the NHS for this expensive service (that’s a cost of £600 million)?

That’s right – firms of profit-making money-grubbers. So much for quality and safety.

I don’t know if they all have marble foyers, but they certainly do all have contracts provided by Mr Jeremy Hunt.

The NHS should look to the USA for inspiration in its battle to meet demand with diminishing resources, health secretary Jeremy Hunt has said.

Speaking at the King’s Fund’s annual conference on Wednesday, he said the Government had not been given enough credit for its investment in the health service during difficult economic times, and challenged managers and staff to make savings by ‘thinking about quality and safety not as an optional extra’.

Mr Hunt said the NHS could learn these lessons from institutions such as the revered Mayo Clinic, which runs 20 hospitals in the USA.

He asked: ‘What does this clinic that Arab kings visit with its amazing marble foyers have that is at all relevant to us? One of the reasons it has marble foyers is they have created so much value by making quality their business strategy.

‘The way we unlock the resources we really need because of the pressures on the NHS is by thinking about quality and safety not as an optional extra but as an intrinsic business strategy.’

Source: BMA – Learn from US clinics and their ‘marble foyers’, says health secretary

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Is this the kind of NHS hip replacement operation that Lord Carter thinks is too pricey?

Earlier today, Vox Political reported that Labour’s Lord Carter had claimed some hip operations were “costing more than double the amount that they should, with some expensive replacements not lasting as long as cheaper ones”.

A quick stroll through the Internet has now turned up an example of the kind of operation it is likely he meant – and, don’t be surprised, it’s by a private healthcare company.

The report is a few years old (from 2012) but there’s no reason to believe standards have improved at all. Here’s what the Daily Mail had to say about one person’s experience:

Mrs Collett had been sent to the Haslar Hospital in Portsmouth, under a contract agreed between the NHS and Netcare, a South African health company.

When she came round from the surgery, she was shocked to be told she’d suffered a third-degree burn to her foot, which was scorched almost to the bone.

But worse was to come. She was also in constant pain from her hip replacement.

Within two months, it dislocated twice.

Mrs Collett says a GP told her the prosthesis in her leg was too short and was also loose because insufficient cement had been used to fix it.

The Mail reckoned 17 per cent of hip replacements were being carried out privately in 2012. It seems doubtful that this number has fallen in the years since.

Private healthcare is now monitored by the Care Quality Commission – but that organisation has itself come under fire for failings of its own.

A report by the Centre for Health and the Public Interest, dated August 2014, states very clearly that the NHS is gambling with patients’ health every time it passes them on to the private sector:

The same requirements to report incidents do not apply to private providers as they do to the NHS, which in itself makes it hard to monitor how safe or otherwise private services are. Information about clinical negligence claims against private providers are not publicly available, as they are in the NHS.

Patients themselves have fewer rights in the private sector. Whilst there is a general requirement to operate a complaints procedure, unlike the NHS complaints procedure, those used by private providers afford no statutory rights to the complainant and there is no recourse to the Health Service Ombudsman in the case of private care. There is no statutory requirement to provide for independent advice and support with complaints which is the case with the NHS. Consequently it is much harder to hold a private provider to account.

Even taking legal action for clinical negligence against a private provider is more problematic than with the NHS, where everything is overseen by the NHS Litigation Authority. A claimant against a private provider can be faced with complications over whether it is the hospital or the individual surgeon or sub-contractor who is liable.

All too often, in addition to the patient who is harmed through no fault of their own, it is the NHS which ends up picking up the pieces (and the tab) when things go wrong in private healthcare.

Worse still, the Conservative Government is clearly complicit in this failure of care:

Bizarrely, as recently as [2014] the Government passed the Care Act, which exempted providers of privately funded care from the new criminal offence for providing false or misleading information to the regulators. As if this could only happen in a publicly run service.

So, if you’re an NHS patient sent to a private hospital for a hip replacement, you could come out in worse condition than you went in, with very little ability to gain financial redress or even to have the mistake corrected – and this is the way the government wants it.

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‘Pillock’ BBC reporter’s duff NHS question makes Miliband’s day

All smiles: "We will hear people with respect," said Mr Miliband - but he couldn't hide his enjoyment of Norman Smith's error of judgement.

All smiles: “We will hear people with respect,” said Mr Miliband – but he couldn’t hide his enjoyment of Norman Smith’s error of judgement.

Norman Smith, the BBC’s assistant political editor, may have cause to regret very deeply his line of questioning to Ed Miliband yesterday.

It was one of those occasions when the BBC’s adoption of the Conservative Party’s narrative on almost every political story simply couldn’t stand up – and that’s why Norman was shouted down.

Mr Miliband was launching the Labour Party’s general election campaign at Salford’s Lowry Theatre when Mr Smith ventured his unwise question. Considering the factual evidence of recent weeks, it may be possible that he was ordered to ask the following by one of his Tory bosses within the corporation. He said: “You have attacked the Tories for going negative in this campaign already over this publication of the dossier about your spending commitments but haven’t you gone negative over the NHS? Because you are saying that it will be unrecognisable in five years’ time and yet Mr Cameron has pledged to ringfence the NHS budget, announced that £2bn has been promised and there has been no winter crisis, so aren’t you …”

The reaction was – well, see for yourself. The look on Ed’s face at the claim that there has been no winter crisis is priceless:

http://youtu.be/lPBL_2DctEY

The hubbub following the BBC reporter’s claims included someone with a northern accent advising him to go back to London – and another audience member called him “a pillock”.

Mr Miliband, clearly enjoying the moment, defused the growing anger with a raised hand: “We will hear people with respect … particularly Norman.”

Then he said: “The difference is between fact and falsehood.

“You should talk to people in the NHS, Norman, because they will genuinely say to you with an edge in their voice ‘Where are things going to be in five years’ time, what kind of NHS are we going to have?’

“I met a young doctor a few months ago who had just qualified and he said to me ‘You know you have got to have a plan, you know you have got to sort this out because I want the NHS to be actually there when I’m a doctor.’

“I think there is real fear about the fact that we transformed the NHS in government, it’s already gone backwards. If you are proposing as a party to go back to 1930s levels of public spending as a share of national income – as you were one of the first people to point out – then I think there is real fear about what that means for the NHS and other vital public services.”

Just to clarify why Mr Miliband was surprised to hear there was no winter crisis, here’s just one example of a situation Mr Smith seemed to think didn’t happen, from the middle of last month, as reported by – surprise! – the BBC.

Additional (January 6): Today the BBC is reporting that the English NHS (along with those in the other UK countries) has recorded its worst failure to meet Accident and Emergency waiting time targets since they were introduced in 2004 – despite those targets having been reduced when the Tory-led Coalition Government came into office. The graph accompanying the article is particularly damning.

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