We need a revolution in health but now it’s down to the public and patients.
The politicians have given in to the unions and the professionals have now to demonstrate that patients really are at the heart of that they do. The NHS is unsustainable as it is, and the bureaucracy is set to get worse. Professionals and leaders know both these facts. Yet if there is a reluctance from them to meet the needs of patients, improve the patient experience and be responsive to the public then this must expose them to greater scrutiny. The public wants choice and reassurance about quality and safety. While there is a sentimental attachment to the NHS, Mid Staffs et al show that this reassurance is fragile and there is a dire need for individual accountability and regulators with power.
The public are realistic about the fact we can’t afford everything but also that current spending is wasteful in the extreme. Whilst they are happy for GPs to be in the driving seat of designing and delivering care, they will not be reassured by the complexity of the new management systems and the red-tape that will restrict their GP’s freedom. It will eventually sink in that the unions (and some professionals and civil servants) are hell-bent on destroying choice and preventing the inclusion of entrepreneurs and businesses that have historically driven quality, efficiency, innovation and boosted the economy.
Monopolies maintain mediocrity and misuse. We hope that this realisation will be sooner rather than later and that a patient’s revolution will deliver the urgent reforms that will ensure we have the healthcare we need for the rest of the 21st century.