Wednesday, 28 March 2012

Where did the NHS Confederation appear from ?........and why ?

Wonders will never cease ! The NHS Confederation - ooooh, I like the sound of that - there's posh. I wonder if they have a Starship ?  If they did , it certainly couldn't be called 'Enterprise' because that would imply 'Bold Undertakings' and , unfortunately, the only suitable, or appropriate word for the NHS' undertakings is unfathonable, because no one can get to the bottom of anything they are undertaking at present.

First we have a recession, and David Francis of the Universally Inept Health Board says that they have to save £20m this fiscal year.  Next, the figure is increased to £80m, on its' way to the last figure published - £100m.  Now the Director of 'The Confederation', Dr George Findlay reports that the NHS has already saved £300m this year ! So, this explains his agreement with the outburst from GP, Dr Jessop that the NHS doesn't have the resources to meet current need.  Lies, Damn Lies and Statistics - which is is it I wonder ?  Could it be that the £300m saving is correct, which would certainly explain why resources have been so savagely slashed ?  Of course, this isn't the first time we've heard this complaint from GPs.  Their own represesentative body, the BMA have frequently complained that their are not enough beds, surgical, or Intensive care resources to meet current need - to say nothing about the disaster that is Midwife Led services or Women's services in general.

Even trying to be positive, we must welcome the new hospital in Ystrad Mynach, even though it hasn't got an A & E Department.  Of course beds will be lost at Caerphilly Miner's hospital, even though the bed units at Ystrad are supposed to be self-sufficient, as befits any new Starship, of course.  And we mustn't forget the 'ring-fenced' £80m for the new Mental Health Inpatient unit to be built at Llandough, that will replace beds at Barry, St David's, Hamadryad, Whitchurch and the Llanfair Unit ( cost £7.155m only ). And we must be realistic, in these times of austerity, that the numbers of beds at this expensive new unit will not even number half the total of those being closed....oh dear ! But we can at least be reassured that the new Elderly Mentally Infirm Unit is built and will be open sometime this year.....or next.  These 82 new beds are a tad short of the 191 that have been cut, but - with a targeted maximum stay of 42 days - the old dears won't be allowed to clutter up the new unit for long. Nope - it's that phrase again - 'Care In The Community' that will benefit from increased funding ( unspecified as yet......) with locations absolutely everywhere - except where they're most needed. So that's the plan, in a nutshell; close hospitals, centralise all services, provide less beds and surgical facilities in inaccessible locations - for most of the population of Wales at least - and dump the patients back into the community.

Ah, but this is where the Great Sayer of Sooths, Tony Jewell makes his devestating ( but still unsubstantiated ) point that 94 % of the population are living unhealthy lifestyles - Bingo - there it is then, isn't it ? - We are all making ourselves ill, therefore we are all responsible for making ourselves better, aren't we ??  At least we can take some satisfaction from knowing that all these newly created senior posts will have sufficient resources to look after each other and keep themselves in their highly paid part-time jobs.
Don't you feel better now ?????   No ? - wonders will never cease !   R.W.

Wednesday, 21 March 2012


Further Information :

I have had no direct reply from Ms.Hutt , but from an underling who told me by email that my query had now been passed on to the Minister for Social Services and that I would would be having a reply shortly.

To date -March 21st I have had none.
My original email was sent directly to Jane Hutt 11/03/12

Tuesday, 13 March 2012


I so agree with Lynette Spragg's comments re: the patronising way in which members of the public using NHS services, 'health professionals' are treated, in spite of the fact that we pay their salaries.

While suffering from depression myself and having to undergo, 'treatment' I was repeatedly addressed by a junior female doctor as, "Honey" despite numerous requests not to be addressed in that patronising way. To me it illustrates  the 'them and us' scenario endemic in the mental health service.

My other concern is that on Sunday at an International Womens ' Day Event in Chapter organised by CFN  where JANE HUTT - who now has the Portfolio for Equalities at WAG - sat on the Panel where she assured the gathering that she had the best interests of women in Wales at heart re: issues of, "dignity and  respect" and that she was, "concerned with the safety of women." .
I then asked her the question why if that was actually the case why had UHB reneged on it's promise of Single Sex wards in Mental Health Units in the Public Consultations : 2010. She denied all knowledge of this and said she would ,"have to look into it." The session was then quickly moved on.
I have since emailed her for further clarification: of course I have received No Reply.

I might add that Julie Morgan Labour MP for Cardiff North is more concerned with Sun Bed legislation than with the appalling conditions of ,' bed sharing' at Whitchurch Hospital on her very doorstep of her Plasneydd Surgey!
How do these politicians ,who proudly parade their Liberal Values, these paid up members of the Guardian Reading Public -how do they sleep at night ?
 Have 'lessons been learned' ?  I think not.  G. B.

Monday, 12 March 2012

Recent UHW news stories are very troubling

Robin has pointed out the recent stories of bed shortages at UHW (University Hospital, Wales - Heath), which, as we all know, is no new problem. I was unfortunate enough to be at UHW - in the Maternity Assessment Unit - on one such day.

I am currently 18 weeks pregnant and have Hyperemesis. What's that I hear you ask? Sorry, Google can tell you, I'm sick of explaining it!  I needed IV fluids due to dehydration and therefore needed to be admitted and that meant I needed a bed. Oh dear! There aren't any!

Anyway... the main point of this post is to discuss the recent news that a mother recently lost her unborn child due to staff at the UHW MLU (Midwifery Led Unit) sticking to their 'protocol' instead of listening to a mother 'in-the-know'.

The mother's name; Katrina Giles. A mother who had lost a son to placental abruption (again, Google) and so knew how it felt when something wasn't right and, more importantly, went to ask the 'professionals' for help, only to be let down.

The Echo article says:

Ruth Walker, Cardiff and Vale University Health Board’s executive director of nursing, said: “We extend our sincere condolences to Katrina and her family at this difficult time.

“As they are aware we have undertaken a full investigation into the issues they have raised and shared our report with Katrina.

“We have had discussions with Katrina and will continue to have on-going discussions with her and the family in relation to our findings.”

One thing that doesn't really bear any reference to the article (but I think needs a mention) is that Ruth Walker refers to the lady as 'Katrina' - I am sure Ms Giles is not on friendly terms with Ms Walker, and so, would not allow her to be so informal!

Back to the point. How much money are the UHB going to waste on an investigation, which, ultimately should deduce that staff didn't listen, they left an emergency situation go on far too long, and the child died. That didn't take much time to figure out did it?

In the first instance Ms Giles should have been consultant led and not in the MLU. END OF! A mother who previously lost a child at term to placental abruption?? What the....? 

Secondly, I'd love to see the 'report' - hmmmm I wonder if I could get it on Freedom of Information? I bet it won't mention the shortage of staff, shortage of beds, demands on the staff at the unit itself etc etc.

We now hear also that Rookwood is not to be transferred to Llandough until the covenant on the land can be transferred AND the building completely renovated for disabled use - what was the rush to close the MLU at Llandough? Surely the compensation culture from all these UHW faux pas is going to cost much more than the running costs of a much needed MLU??

I love being right.

Lynnette Spragg

Friday, 9 March 2012

'Making a Difference ( parts 1&2'.) Ooooops the UIHB and NHS Wales come unstuck !

It must be nearly two years since we first saw the first of these ridiculous documents.  During that time, I ( and some colleagues ) have devoted an inordinate amount of time, attempting to unlock the secrets within these pitifully inadeqate documents.  The amount of corresponcences has been huge, with the only dismissive responses coming from the Universally Inept Health Board and the Minister of Health ( and her subordinates ) who have steadfastly refused to answer the questions we raised about the legality of the consultation process, as well as the current Legislation, protocol and the Guidelines. All of our points were ( and are ) accurate, quoting only from the the Minister's own Revised Guidelines, and exposing the lies and the massive cover-up orchestrated by our government, led by the First Minister.  This is a public disgrace, with all Directorial, Managerial and Ministerial bureaucrats having been exposed as unrepentent liars, as well as their 'Home Guard' collaborators, the Community Health Councils.

Our tireless efforts to expose their total lack of probity, and their abdication of responsibilty, have produced little success, until now, that is !  Chosen colleagues have been sent copies of the documents that prove the extent of the UIHB's intent to deceive the public, wasting millions in the process.  I sincerely hope you enjoy reading them as much as I did.  R.W.

N.B.  Since the UIHB have deliberatel closed access to my blog ( illegally ) under the ludicrous pretence that it is a 'social website, distribution of any good news will take a little longer than before.  However, rest assured the 'the truth will triumph in the end'. Unfortunately, we must be on our guard as the UIHB will persist with attempting to put their ineptly planned prosals into place.  R.W.

Tuesday, 6 March 2012

Groundhog Year in NHS Wales - or, where I have heard that before ?

Echo - 'Sick left on trolleys in hospital bed shortage'

Yes - here we go again - listening to the same load of codswallop as Cardiff & Vale University Health Board ( and forerunner Health Boards, Trusts, Health Authorities ) have been spouting out every year, as soon as they demonstrate that the services they're supposed to run, have proved to be hopelessly inadequate at meeting the health needs of the population.  University hospital is said to be 141 beds too small, to say nothing of the knock-on effect on our over-stretched A & E and Ambulance Services. Mental Health Services are worse than ever, with 191 Elderley Mentaly Infirm Beds lost out of a total of 300+ beds cut over the past ten years. And how does the Deputy Chief Executive of the Universally Inept Health Board respond ?  "The last two months have seen a significant rise in the number and complexity of emergency admissions across the Vale......".  I say 'Yeah right - the same load of meaningless crap we've heard, every winter, since the Ark docked at Pier Head'. 

Only this year, there is no flu epidemic to blame, no exceptionally bad weather conditions, no delays in transfer of care ( formerly known as bed-blocking ), no e-coli outbreak, no MRSA or C-defecile, no staff shortages, no massive demand for expensive, dubious drugs like Herceptin, no foot and mouth outbreak or swine flu, or even a poor uptake in MMR vaccinations - No, and I'm absolutely certain that the GPs are not to blame for deliberately overloading secondary care services with patients able to be 'kept at home where they'd be much happier'.  That leaves only one group to blame for these perennial disasters - that manage to make Undertaking a growth industry, bucking all economic trends - The Management of the Health Boards and the people that are supposed to manage them - our ruddy useless government. These are some of the most insincere, untrustworthy, incompetent, shameless liars, I have ever had the misfortune to encounter, and anyone daft enough to believe any of the empty rhetoric they spew up, needs to have their meters read as their elevators obviously don't go to the top floor.

The management and unskilled government toadies all need to face up to the fact that THEY and only THEY are to BLAME for the poor, inadequate services they provide for our growing population.   R. W.

Saturday, 3 March 2012

'Oh What a Week That Was'

After more horrendous stories in the Echo and the Western Mail about the numbers of patients that have been failed by NHS Wales, I was surprised to see the letter from the Chair and Chief Executive of the Cardiff and Vale Universally Inept Health Board, supposedly reassuring us that they really do have our best interests at heart, and that if future compainants would kindly direct their gripes to the 'Concerns Department'  ( ? a new one on me. RW ) they will receive proper attention with a quick and reassuring response.  Needless to say,I find this puzzling; because they cannot possibly be being remotely sincere, as this message has been published by successive incompetent Directors, followed by no discernable actions to
improve the situation, whatsover !  I can only see this bland, insincere joint statement as a Confession of Guilt, that is intended to wipe away the sins of the past, with absolution being granted by a Higher Authority, thus allowing them to continue their sinning until the next confessional. 

Also this week sees the continuation of another consultation on mental health services, in accordance with The Mental Health ( Secondary Health Services ) (Wales) Order 2012. ( No, I wasn't invited to respond either, so replying would be a waste of time as this is yet another decided issue ).  And Lo, there comes to pass another consultation, which purports to be the proper Business and Financial Case on the new Mental Health Hospital at Llandough, that were suspiciously missing from the Outline Business Case that told us nothing, except that there was 'overwhelming approval' for the UHB's plans ( not evident at any consultation meeting, or in written responses from the poor public and patients ).  I expect to have my intelligence insulted still further by 'ball park' financial amounts, and more empty rhetoric on what wonderful plans these are.  Somehow - with astronomical sums of money being bandied about, once again - I expect these 'plans' to produce only a further cancellation of a new-build Mental Health hospital.  Hardly surprising really, after the appalling incompetent 'planning' that we have seen ( or not seen ), depending on your ability to read.  Doubtless the money for the replacement of vanity breast implants will be found, even though all Capital Programmes will be cancelled - 'due to the government's ( whichever you choose ) austerity measures', which will be used as heavy-duty wallpaper to cover up the Cardiff and Vale University Health Board's incompetence at planning anything more complicated than another photo opportunity for their Chief Executive, Jan Williams' before we are finally relieved of her only talent - that of building up huge losses to be passed onto the next poor sod ( to be added to the £46 m she lost at Bro Taf. ). Now, if only we could get rid of the rest of the useless pillocks in NHS Wales at the same time.......mmmh.  R W