Failing hospitals fill up with apoplectic politicians

If ever there was an issue that could strike fear into the heart of a politician, no matter their affiliation, it has to be hospital closures. Today the RCN has jumped into the ring, batting about the old idea that some hospitals need to close. The idea may be aged but the action has been negligible because there is barely a politician in the land who hasn’t campaigned to keep their local hospital / maternity unit / bunion clinic open. They and the public remain cemented to their local bricks and mortar regardless of the onslaught of catastrophes such as Mid Staffs and the Oxford Children’s heart unit.

We have previously blogged here and here and here on the need to bring the NHS into the 21st century; to move care into the community; ensure procedures are safe and quality is high. We need a new narrative to communicate that care is best where it’s safest; that medicine and technology can come to you and quite frankly that hospitals are full of germs. Hospitals grew out of the word ‘hospitality’ – which we associate with good care in the home. This is where it needs to return and we, the public, need to allow that to happen.

About Julia Manning

Julia is a social pioneer, writer and campaigner. She studied visual science at City University and became a member of the College of Optometrists in 1991, later specialising in visual impairment and diabetes. During her career in optometry, she lectured at City University, was a visiting clinician at the Royal Free Hospital and worked with Primary Care Trusts. She ran a domiciliary practice across south London and was a Director of the UK Institute of Optometry. Julia formed 20/20Health in 2006. Becoming an expert in digital health solutions, she led on the NHS–USA Veterans’ Health Digital Health Exchange Programme and was co-founder of the Health Tech and You Awards with Axa PPP and the Design Museum. Her research interests are now in harnessing digital to improve personal health, and she is a PhD candidate in Human Computer Interaction (HCI) at UCL. She is also dedicated to creating a sustainable Whole School Wellbeing Community model for schools that builds relationships, discovers assets and develops life skills. She is a member of the Royal Society of Medicine’s Digital Health Council. Julia has shared 2020health's research widely in the media (BBC News, ITV, Channel 5 News, BBC 1′s The Big Questions & Victoria Derbyshire, BBC Radio 4 Today, PM and Woman's Hour, LBC) and has taken part in debates and contributed to BBC’s Newsnight, Panorama, You and Yours and ITV’s The Week.
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