Thursday, 21 June 2012

A Pot-Pourri of Health News, or, A Host of Posts

On some occasions I really am stuck for words or - like now - I simply don't know where to start. Fortunately, my 'Blog partner' and friend has such a well-ordered mind, that it's all too easy to chicken-out by asking her to write something that embraces all that I wish to say. Unfortunately, she is 'hors de combat', with being pregnant and feeling thoroughly 'horrible', making a tactical withdrawl by me essential. So, here I go...........

NHS Chaplains - a waste of money ? - surely not.

On the 15th inst., the Western Mail published an article headed £1.3m bill for NHS Chaplains slated as 'wasteful'. Don't ask me 'how' or 'why', but some Godless berk of a retired IT consultant came up with the unbelievable figure of £6.5m since 2008. Of course, various other 'glory girls and boys' in our government have jumped on the band-waggon, agreeing that such expenditure - on spiritual support - could, and should, be spent on other health services such as neo-natal care. So - as with the snowball rolling downhill - the questions about the need for chaplaincy services have grown like topsy. I can only declare that these braying donkeys haven't said how a 72 year old IT consultant arrived at any of these figures, but such detail on costs has never bothered anyone in the NHS yet - being past-masters at creating huge sums of money whenever some facility is needed - especially when they pretend to be all for new-build ventures whilst covertly being against spending any actual money on them. From my personal experience of prolonged hospitalisation, I can only testify that the only service that saw me through my experiences was the help, love and support of the hospital chaplains. Who can put a price on that ?????

Whilst writing on this subject, I must ask, "What are the costs involved in desecrating half of each of our hospital Chapels, in order to satisfy the needs of the Muslim hordes, whose champions managed to push them to the front of the queue, with cost being of secondary importance to the consideration of the needs of these pushy, non-integrating heathens ?" R. W.

Deaths of Detained Mental Health Patients - 'BBC Channel 4 - 'All in the Mind'

Detained patients - in case you don't know - are patients subject to being 'sectioned' under the 1983 Menatl Health Act ( Revised ). These patients are acutely ill and in urgent need of protective hospital care. Unfortunately there are many harrowing stories of these needy patients dying whilst ( supposedly ) being under the care of hospital staff. This is reported as being 5/6 detained patients per week, nationally, with ( as per ruddy convenient ) no separate figures provided for Wales. The vast majority of these tragic deaths are suicides, with the poor relatives getting the sad news days later, if they're lucky. Worse still, the only investigation allowed into these deaths is by way of an 'internal enquiry' conducted by the Trust or Health Board. The relatives are supposed to be involved at any, and every stage, of this enquiry, however, the majority of them record the fact that the Health Board staff have been openly obstructive about sharing any facts or findings with these distressed souls. Then, we have the Coroner's Inquest that ( amazingly ) has no powers to order an independent investigation into these untimely deaths. The result is that these 'wigless paragons of judicious conduct' (heavy sarcasm) record a narrative verdict or, as in the case of poor Jamie Antonio, conclude ( ridiculously ) that 'she did not kill herself'.
Needless to add, that the only solution to this recurring problem is to have totally independent and unbiased public enquiries into every death in detention. R. W.

Health Board bailouts are 'unsustainable'

This declaration from the Auditor General, Huw Vaughan Thomas, follows the 2011-2012 'top ups' by the Welsh Government to four Health Boards - Aneurin Bevan, Cardiff and Vale, Cwm Taf and Powys, in order to bring them to 'break even'. From some imaginary place ( Never, Never Land, probably ) the Western Mail arrived at a figure of £300m that must be saved by the NHS this year. It had already found £290m of savings in 2011-12 on top of the "unprecedented" savings of £1bn since 2011. If I added up all of these unsupported figures, I'd probably arrive at a health budget having been reduced from £5.2bn to £3.75bn by now already. So - where are these savings shown, and why haven't we been given the 'evidence' that shows why and where these savings have to be increased still further ? If the Universally Inept Health Board's budget is £1.2bn, as declared, where have all these savings gone, and why the blazes do we still need to make more ???? Brilliantly, the Auditor General concludes that "Health Boards face significant financial challenges because of the downward pressure on funding and the upward pressure on service demand."

Why do we tolerate these idiots who tell us the blindingly bloody obvious, and then let them get away without providing any evidence of what's happened to the savings already made, and WHY do we have to save a further £300m this year ??? As I have said before - "We are at the mercy of bureaucrats talking bureaucrap ." To paraphrase a statement from Rambo 3, "God must love crazy bureaucrats because he makes so many of them !" R. W.

Question of the day - Why is Tracy Myhill suddenly listed as 'acting Chief Executive of Cardiff and Vale Universally Inept Health Board', when the last quote I read was that Paul Hollard was still in that exalted position. So, where did Tracy Myhill appear from and where did the worst planner in Wales go ? Has she any experience in health - if so where ? Not that it matters, of course, as promoting women - just because they are women and regardless of their competence - has become a long-standing tradition in our Welsh Government. [ Where is that glass ceiling installer I ordered ? ]. R. W.

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