Monday, 23 November 2009

Marriage guidance counselling on the NHS? Whatever next? Beds for the insane?

I see that the NHS are proposing to offer marriage guidance counselling for free as one of its services. That's ripe. There's no money for drugs, beds, staff or research. A friend of mine is a scientist at the local hospital. She's working in oncology and attempting to find various cures for leukemias. It's a privately funded department because there are no government funds available for this kind of blood testing. Most of her colleagues have already been made redundant as a consequence of the recession. Private money is also wanting. She thinks that she will be next and doesn't know where her next job will be. But who will then be there to find the cures?

In addition to the above, the local hospital - in the midst of a huge refurbishment - and another hospital within the vicinity, are now the subject of a proposal to merge their two A&E departments. There's no money, you see, to keep the other, alternate, A&E open. This is also after a huge refurbishment of that particular hospital. The local hospital is already ill-equipped to deal with the huge catchment area for emergency medicine. How it could possibly cope with adding the fall-out from the other establishment is anyone's guess.

The psychiatric department where Zach has spent many moons was recently closed and a new one reopened. The problem is, though, that the local authority has to keep occupation at a minimum because there's no funding to offer the mentally ill the beds that they need. This is borne out by their 'criteria.' It used to be the case that if someone was considered a 'danger to him/herself or other people' then they would be sectioned. Well, this no longer seems to be the 'criteria' to which the NHS subscribe. God knows what it is. From experience, there's no 'criteria' at all.

NICE restrict medication that is proven to work for liver cancer sufferers; NICE operates a post-code for other medications and, this morning, I heard John Frieda on the radio proposing that hairdressers raise funds for a new operating theatre at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children. An operating theatre? What is going on here? This is just after Children in Need, an annual private fund-raising event for the very same hospital raised hundreds of thousands of pounds. Great Ormond Street is an NHS hospital.

It's a scandal. Who is actually proposing that the NHS offer marriage guidance when there's not enough money for drugs, for childrens' operations, for mental health patients or even sufficient staff to provide urgent medical care for the elderly? Has anyone heard of the word priority?


Anonymous said...

I couldn't agree more!

Ros Morris said...


Sooz said...

It's funny you mention GOSH, our previous President wouldn't let us do Genes for Jeans because they 'get loads of money already' which I guess is true. The mentally ill don't pull at the heart strings of the nation like sick children do.

I hadn't heard of this marriage counselling on the NHS proposal, what a load of nonsense!