Tuesday, 17 December 2013

Operations to be delayed - AGAIN !

Health Board set to delay ops to cope with winter surge

Hywel Dda health board has set out its' proposals for dealing with expected activity during winter.  As one of the five worst performing health boards in Wales, they join their fellow boards in exercising maximum managerial incompetence in  predicting a log jam of patients that will have been created entirely on their own, supported by the Minister, of course.

All Health Boards expect to be at maximum capacity, despite us all being half-way through winter already. Most health pundits - especially Dr Richard Lewis of BMA Wales - express some surprise, a they see NHS in Wales at capacity on a daily basis.  So there we have it - the Minister and all health boards are gearing up for dealing with the predicted 'unprecedented demand' - via GPs referrals and other 999 calls to our few A&E departments - yet the BMA indicate the situation couldn't get worse than on a 'normal' day !

Hywel Dda are mentioned for bravely stating that they will be delaying some elective orthopaedic operations. With thousands of operations already having been delayed, it seems that the other health Boards will carry on with delaying operations as they have been all year. Needless to say the usual suspects to be blamed will be the patients ( who, apparently cancel most of their ops themselves ? ), and our already 'flogged to death' ambulance service, who will have even longer journeys to A&E thanks to the changes underway ( yet still not approved ? ).

At this time, we have heard that Minister Drakeford "profoundly regrets" the recent avoidable deaths of eight liver operations.  This creation of an even higher level of regret, still does not dissuade the Minister from having the mandatory external investigation, even though these fatalities add to the tragic total of 152 avoidable cardiac deaths, as reported by the Royal College of surgeons.  His pathetic excuse is that their own 'established monitoring systems' exposed the failure of a liver consultant. Odd, then, that the same monitoring system (LoL) failed to notice the cardiac failures ., whilst the death toll was mounting, higher and higher.

As I have reported previously, Health is devolved, with no more controls or checks by Parliament, except the overall budget. Obviously, this is a consequence of the regrettable devolution process that has so patently failed to deliver any service improvements or economic gains for Wales.  If only we could go back in time to stop this stupid mistake !   R.  W.

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