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Showing posts from 2016

STPs

This is the latest issue to hit the NHS and it is very worrying. I wrote this for the Huffington Post. Have a read and see what you think about STPs.....

http://www.huffingtonpost.co.uk/david-wrigley/stps-are-no-justification_b_13647056.html?


Could private top-up insurance help fund the NHS?

This article first appeared in the BMJ
Current tax revenues cannot maintain healthcare standards, writes Christopher Smallwood, but David Wrigley worries that introducing inequity sounds the death knell of a service free for all who need it Yes—Christopher Smallwood It is hardly controversial to suggest that standards of healthcare in the NHS are declining. A stream of recent reports has shown the strain the NHS is under, drawing attention to a near universal failure to meet the target of four hours’ waiting time in emergency departments,1 the longest waiting times for operations since 2007, and unprecedented staff shortages.  The principal cause of this lamentable state of affairs is unquestionably underfinancing of the system. In 2012-13, few trusts were in deficit but by 2015-16 the proportion had reached 85%.2 As the King’s Fund has said, we are “facing a health system buckling under the strain of huge financial pressures.”2 Current problems are set to intensify at an alarming rat…

A Quiet Time for the NHS

400 doctors recently gathered in Belfast for their annual meeting to discuss issues affecting the whole profession. It is a 4 day event and a very busy week discussing issues affecting everyone from medical students up to retired doctors covering medical politics as well as the professional, scientific aspects affecting our day to day work.
GPs were angry this year. Angry at how their branch of practice has seen yet more cuts to their budgets and angry with politicians who make out things are OK when those of us working on the front line of the NHS know it isn’t.
GP surgeries are closing across the country now. GPs can no longer keep going and are handing their keys back to NHS England. What a shocking indictment on our politicians when their policies and funding cuts bring about the closure of much loved and well respected community surgeries. Patients are the ones who lose out and once a surgery closes it will never come back again.
The workload in intolerable with upwards of 60-70 pa…

Thoughts from the Picket Line

I arrived at the picket line at Royal Lancaster Infirmary at 8am on Wednesday just as the photographer was arriving to take some pictures for his latest story. There is still significant media interest in the strikes - which are the first set of doctors strikes in 40 years.
The junior doctors had arrived and were getting their banners ready and it was fantastic to see some local teachers turn up to support our doctors. The rain didn’t dent our spirits and we spoke to many passers by who supported us and hundreds of cars honked their horns in support as they drive by.
As a GP I support our junior colleagues 100% in this fight for a safe and fair contract and what is in effect a fight for the NHS. I know they don’t want to be on strike but they have been forced into this by Cameron and Hunt who now see doctors as their enemy and are trying to crush them. A consultant came out to the picket line and brought coffee for us and I had a chat with him. He said the consultants were showing huge…