Thursday, October 26, 2017

The Painfully Slow Death of Scotland’s NHS, inept Nicola Sturgeon placed her pal, Shona Robison in charge of Scotland’s flagship public service, and Shona Robison failed as health sec, she has failed marriage, how long must we suffer this fool in charge, Audit Scotland’s report is damning about the failure and lack of vision

Dear All

Since 2007 and before, the State of Scotland’s NHS has been going backwards, although the SNP under Alex Salmond and Nicola Sturgeon managed to cover it up, eventually the truth seeped out like pus out of an open wound.

Alex Salmond appointed unpopular Nicola Sturgeon as Health Sec and a smoke and mirrors operation was enacted to highlight a few targets while the rest of health system was falling apart. When the SNP dumped the government in 2012 to chase independence, this accelerated the process dramatically. The cracks which were opening up under Nicola Sturgeon only came to light as she was moved to be the face of independence.

Alex Neil’s tenure was short and unremarkable, he even fainted during an operation it was said, perhaps this was due to the sight of blood. When Sturgeon took over from Alex Salmond; the ‘clear out’ happened to replace old deadwood with new deadwood politicians running the departments of Health, Education and Justice.

Nicola Sturgeon decided to appoint her pal, Shona Robison as health sec, a woman who couldn’t run her own marriage to Stewart Hosie which saw her MP husband fire into younger flesh. Stewart Hosie picked up a bit of totty at Westminster who said she had trouble keeping her knickers on. This however wasn’t a medic problem due to sudden weight loss so Hosie couldn’t ask his wife to squeeze his new bird for an appointment.

As a failing health sec, Shona Robison clearly out of her depth continued to struggle on with the backing of failing First Minister Nicola Sturgeon, right across the board the NHS in Scotland was failing under Robison’s inept leadership. Now yet again, we are seeing the damning evidence as Audit Scotland publishes a report on NHS Scotland that warns 'quality of care' is under threat as budget cuts increase. We keep hearing from the SNP that Scotland is a rich country, but where is the money going, and more importantly why is there such bad leadership managing our health service?

It is to do with priorities; Government is used as a vehicle for promoting independence, and clueless ministers do the ‘day job’ as a part time job but still take a full whack of the ministerial salary. The concept of Government is beyond the SNP, things aren’t getting better despite the nationalist lies, they are getting worse, in Scotland, the pool of political talent can fit into a teacup, there is no ocean of talent or as Salmond once quipped ‘too many talented people’ in his government.

They are all shite!

What is supposed to be the flagship policy of NHS Scotland is struggling to maintain quality of care with patients waiting longer for treatment, targets missed and no improvement in the nation's health, so no change there then. One way to easy the pressure is to do preventative health measures such as exercise and control of weight, although not technically academic in the round, the best that we get is pamphlets at GP surgeries and fitness centres. Medics may know how the body works, the theory but the practice of a well rounded fit person keeping a body maintained is limited I would suggest.
Problems need to be address before they can develop but there isn’t joined up thinking, just joined up talking shops that produce paper and hot air and little else.

Fitness centres are an excellent way to nip things in the bud but aren’t utilised as they should be. How much could be saved and how much pressure could be taken off budgets if we had a healthier society developed.


In this day and age, we still see waste of resources by bed blocking which is a disgrace, the system isn’t slick enough, and we also see number of patients waiting more than 12 weeks for an outpatient appointment has soared four-fold since 2013. I had a hell of a time when I was seriously ill, I nearly died back in 2014 which I blogged on in the past. My experience was mirrored by others as chaos hit our over loaded service, 800 per cent delay for planned inpatient and day case treatments, appointments cancelled. The extent of failure is laid bare by the fact that seven out of the Scottish Government's eight priority targets were missed for the second year in a row in 2016/17. If you are unlucky to be in an A&E department, you are in for a long wait, the SNP can’t keep to the four-hour A&E target. If you have cancer the referral-to-treatment times are getting longer, and hit the treatment target time is just a dream.

BMA Scotland chair, Dr Peter Bennie, said:

“This latest report makes clear that it is getting harder and harder for the NHS in Scotland to cope with continued austerity. Demands on the NHS are increasing rapidly every year and sufficient resources are simply not being made available to meet the needs of patients.”

The idea that there has been unprecedented" savings of £387.4 million in 2016/17 - up 33 per cent on the previous year is a sick joke, health isn’t cheap, and for some people who end up in hospital, the outcome for them is final.

Cuts aren’t "unprecedented" savings, they are just a marker to explain why care is so limited and so bad, to do the job properly, staff need resources. In 2016/17, the health budget was a record £12.9 billion, 43 per cent of the total Scottish Government budget, a problem is a huge surge in operating costs as demand for healthcare increases.  

So, do we need a new model introduced?

I would say there is scope to explore change, certain things need a hospital setting but other things can and possibly should be delivered at GP level, and as we have seen we are 3,000 GPs short in Scotland, another SNP blunder.

Did you hear of Nicola Sturgeon announcing a recruitment drive?

Me neither.

Medicine, the teaching of students needs to be explained, with an unhealthy Scotland, it seems we have plenty of training material with coughs, scraps, broken bodies and cancer to service this industry.

Should we have a new medical school in Scotland?

I don’t know, I am asking the question, but questions is what should be getting asked, and on a repeat basis. It seems we are spending too much on agency staff, including locum doctors which have increased 79 per cent over five years to £171m.

Why hasn’t the SNP done anything about this?

How long must a problem continue in the SNP Government before it is fixed, this state of affairs smacks of incompetence, our NHS should be properly staffed at all times, and certainly not dependent on agency staff to the tune of £171m.

One solution to the continued crisis by Audit Scotland is that the Scottish Government should shift from one-year funding allocations to three to five year funding cycles.

It said:

“The lack of financial flexibility, with NHS boards required to break even at the end of each financial year, and lack of long-term planning are barriers to moving more care out of hospitals.”

Why hasn’t Shona Robison adopted this, a guess would be that she doesn’t get ‘cost over runs’ because things don’t stop being a problem because of the new budget year.

Caroline Gardner, Auditor General for Scotland, said:

"The NHS in Scotland marks its 70th anniversary next year, and there is widespread agreement that healthcare must be delivered differently if it is to withstand growing pressure on services. There is no simple solution, but these fundamental areas must be addressed if reform is to deliver the scale of transformation that's needed across the NHS."

We don’t have a reforming Scottish Government, we have a lame duck SNP Government with no focus other than independence, Shona Robison failed as health sec, she has failed marriage and she has no vision.

How long must we suffer this fool in charge?

Yours sincerely

George Laird
The Campaign for Human Rights at Glasgow University


Al C said...

As the old saying goes, 'You had one job'.

Anonymous said...

The Painfully Slow Death of Scotland. One day we get told we need more immigrants to fix the demographic situation, usual stuff like too many old folk, not enough young. The very next day we get told women in Scotland are to be allowed the abortion pill at home. We are ruled by lunatics.