Archive for Sickness

Doctor’s Sick Note System in Urgent Need of Reform

Posted in Benefits, Britain, Conservative Party, England, Health, UK with tags , , , , , on 20/11/2011 by floroy1942

A new government proposal to reform the current system of doctors handing out sick notes for long and short-term illness is on the cards, and it’s well overdue. For decades people have been able to go to their local GP and obtain the necessary piece of paper that allows them to take time off work and still get paid, either by their employer or the government.

There is Evidence Enough

While many sick notes are legitimate, there are millions that are nothing more than an excuse for the work-shy to lounge around and live off benefits. This has to stop, and the government is looking at ways to curb this criminality. For it is criminal when a person lives off the back of the tax payer when capable of doing a job of work and paying taxes. But such is the decline in moral standards these days, that many people are always looking for something for nothing, while fully capable of going out and earning it for themselves.

Doctors’ Dilemma

Many family doctors find it hard to keep up with the ever-increasing flow of patients in their surgeries, and most I’m sure just sign a sick note without a proper examination these days. It is therefore difficult to lay the blame at their door.

It is a medical fact that many incapacitating illnesses are difficult to diagnose, or in fact disprove, like certain back-pain for example. Wily work dodgers know this and are adept at working the system.

Dept. For Works and Pensions

According to information released by the Department of Work and Pensions (DWP), around 140 million work days a year are lost to sickness, which is costing a massive £15 billion in lost economic output in the UK annually. The bill for short term illness has to be paid by the employer, but those with long-term sickness must be supported by the state. The DWP figures indicate that the cost to employers comes out at around £9 billion, while the state pays out a massive £130 billion annually in sickness benefits.

Now, as I have previously said, many claims are legitimate, for we cannot all be healthy all the time, but the government hopes to employ a method that will hopefully cut back on those who ‘milk’ the system.

The proposal is that a local GP will only be allowed to issue sick notes for a period not exceeding four weeks, after that the claimant can be made to attend an independent panel of doctors by his/her employer to certify their illness. If you are genuinely sick you should have nothing to fear, but those ‘trying it on’ will hopefully have a tougher time. To me, this seems an excellent idea, considering some 300,000 people a year drop out of work to live on benefits long-term.

Many people may require some months ‘on the sick’ after perhaps a car or work-related accident, and the honest ones will be back at work as soon as they are fit enough. They deserve applause, but for the scroungers it is nothing more than an excuse to get out of working for a living. With luck the new system will ‘winkle out’ these parasites and get them back to being productive members of society once again.

Disability Need Not Stop You Working

Some people are getting benefits because they are permanently incapacitated in one way or another, but that does not preclude them from doing some form of work that suits their affliction. Just because a person is in a wheelchair does not stop them from working. There are many jobs suited to such people, and they should be integrated back into society and given the opportunity to contribute.

I am glad to see an administration with the balls to tackle this problem that has festered unchecked under the previous Labour government. It is way past time!

Roy.

The NHS – National Hospital Shambles

Posted in Britain, Budget Cuts, Conservative Party, David Cameron, England, Government, Government Spending, Health, Immigrants, Insanity, Liberal Party, Nick Clegg, UK with tags , , , , , , , , on 17/06/2011 by floroy1942

Says It All!

The British National Health Service (NHS) is without doubt the most disgusting, inefficient and money wasting enterprise in the UK. It is in too many areas badly managed, badly staffed and badly equipped for the times. In an ideal situation the whole edifice would be torn down and reorganized from the top down. Unfortunately, this is not possible.

There are of course good hospitals, and there are good doctors and nurses who do their best to provide care, comfort and relief, and by no means do I wish to belittle these people’s efforts, but the system is so broken their actions go mostly unnoticed.

The Numbers Don’t Lie!

We have tens of thousands of patients who go for treatment only to catch deadly diseases (MRSA) while in the hospital, more than two thousand of whom die (See graph). There are never enough nursing staff, and many of those that are there can barely speak english. Patients in pain, or who even just need a bedpan for example are ignored, and when a patient requests help staff are often rude.

Patients are left unattended for hours on end sometimes resulting in deaths. Mistakes are made during operations, equipment doesn’t work or is incorrectly calibrated, and as for dirt, its everywhere. Cleaning staff are among the most inefficient in the entire enterprise. The list goes on and on and no-one, not even the politicians, seems capable of fixing it.

Cameron Flogging A Dead Horse

David Cameron has been laying forth his plan for the NHS this last week but it will not fix any of the problems. When it comes to finding a cure for what ails our health serevice all governments (from both sides of the house) can come up with is; Let’s privatize!

Cameron on NHS reforms:

In the old days (Oh no, here he goes again) they didn’t have all the fancy instruments and machines they have today, they didn’t even have the level of knowledge, but patients didn’t die from hospital borne diseases, a nurse was always there when you needed one and the wards, operating theaters etc were so clean you could eat off the floor. Why was this? What has changed the system so drastically?

Matron And Her Charges

Well, for a start, if you were a nurse it was like being in the military because the old style Matron was ‘The General’! If she said “Jump” a nurse asked “How high”! In those days Matrons ruled their entire ward with a rod of iron, and woe betide any cleaner who missed a spot or a nurse who didn’t answer a patients call within 30 seconds. Mind you, they knew how to get troublesome patients back in line too so it wasn’t all rosy.

Sadly, these cornerstones on which the NHS rested were done away with when in 1967 the Salmon Report, which initiated restructuring of the NHS, was put into practice.

So what prompted this rant about the NHS? Well, I have to say it was a report I read in the news about a young mother and her baby who died in hospital due to neglect by the staff.

Queen’s Hospital Romford

The hospital in question is Queens Hospital in Romford east London. The young mother, Tebussem Ali (known as Serena) died in the maternity unit when staff failed to recognise she had a ruptured womb. When she complained to nurses about great pain, staff were rude and sarcastic to her, telling her to “stop being a drama queen” and to stop “behaving like a child”.

Serena And Her Husband Shortly Before She Died

Once it was discovered by medics she had a serious problem they could not find her notes. Resuscitation was attempted with an oxygen mask that was not even connected to a supply and it was Serena’a husband, Usman Javed, who noticed the error, but by then it was too late.

Of course the hospital issued the standard apology with the usual promises  (probably pre-printed) to improve the situation and now expect business as usual and the whole mess to go away, but it shouldn’t be allowed to just “Go Away”. Those to blame  should be fired, and others should have severe disciplinary action taken against them for the death of this young woman and her baby. It just isn’t good enough to say “Oh! We’re sorry” and everything gets flushed down the toilet. A young woman and her child are dead!

Saira And Daughter – A Close Call For Mother And Child At Queens

Saira And Daughter – A Close Call For Mother And Child At Queens

In 2010 Saira Chaudhri went to Queen’s maternity ward only to be told she was not in labour. After pleading with staff she was still told to go home but only reached the car park when someone noticed blood on her trousers. She was immediately rushed back in. It seems the machine they had used to measure her contractions had been faulty.

Earlier this year two midwives from the same hospital were ‘suspended’ after the death of a mother and her new born baby. Suspended? Not fired! The hospital administration should have ensured these two people never worked as midwives ever again!

These are just two cases and are far from isolated. This sort of thing  happens every day in our hospitals and sometimes its much worse.

A sample video of hospital errors:

Cleaning By Private Companies

Patients have left hospital, thankful they survived the experience, complaining of filthy wards, dirty beds and patients bed sheets not being changed when required, as well as disgraceful rudeness from nursing staff and many who cannot even speak english.

This language problem is the fault of the previous government who trolled the world, and in particular ex-colonies, for nursing staff to fill the yawning gap in NHS needs. Those recruiting these foreign nurses didn’t seem to attach much importance to the candidates being able to speak english. “You have a dodgy qualification as a nurse? Right, here’s your plane ticket!”

The Sharp End

The general situation has gotten so bad with the NHS, that the ‘sticking plaster’ approach of fixing the problems so favoured by politicians, just ain’t gonna work!

Probably the most important answer to these difficulties would be to bring back the Matrons, but sadly, they are all pensioners or have already passed on. I don’t think for one minute there is anyone around at the present time who could match up to the Matrons of old.

Looks Complicated Doesn’t It

But one essential move that could be made by Cameron and his crew is to get rid of all these bloody managers that infest the system  like a cancer (waste). Secondly, privatisation in all its forms should be done away with, especially in regard to hospital cleaning services (cleanliness). Thirdly, mandatory language training must begin for all foreign nationals working in the NHS (communication), and lastly, we need to start training our own people, doctors and nurses, to be the next generation of hospital staff (staff levels).

To me these actions will help solve many of our most pressing problems in the NHS, and I can’t see for the life of me why our stupid politicians cannot see it too.

For example, if you need an administrator, why not recruit from older nursing staff who know the system inside out. Why must it be someone who may be a good manager, but has never worked in a medical environment and therefore does not understand the problems.

Time For A Real Change

Other countries don’t have the problems in the health profession that we do, the only reason we must suffer this chaos is firstly the politicians make a balls-up whenever they get involved, and standards in our health institutions have dropped so low as to have left a hole in floor.

What to do? Find a government that will act responsibly in sorting out the problems by making the correct decisions! Well, its either that or some Whitehall chappie had better shove my post under the P.M’s nose! Huh! Some hopes!

Roy.

Billionaires Versus Poverty

Posted in Children, Health, Modern World with tags , , , , , , , on 12/03/2011 by floroy1942

The Forbes list of billionaires has just been released, and I cannot help but wonder if any of these people have a conscience. The list of billionaires country by country is getting longer every year, and the amount of wealth these few people have amassed is also growing at an alarming rate.

Carlos Slim-The World's Richest Man

Today, the world’s richest man is mexican telecom giant Carlos Slim with an estimated wealth of $74bn, an increase of 20.5% over the last year. Second place goes to Microsoft’s Bill Gates with $56bn with Warren Buffet of the Berkshire Hathaway Group coming in third with $50bn. I find it most distasteful that so much money can go to a single person when there are so many people starving in the world.

Let’s face it, for Carlos Slim, or any of them, to spend all their billions sensibly they would have to live at least two maybe three lifetimes and still would not use it all up. So if you have that much money, is it morally correct to amass such a fortune and do nothing with it but use it to get more?

Mexico Slum Area

Mexico too has a great many poor and deprived citizens, but if Mr. Slim would give $60 or $70bn it would go a long way in alleviating these problems, and he would still have more money than  he could spend in his lifetime. Certainly enough for the huge villas and a Ferrari for every day of the week.

I can only assume these people have only one real goal in life, and that is to make more money. The united wealth of the 790 confessed billionaires in the world ($2.6 trillion) could solve nearly all the hunger, sickness and poverty on earth, if they had more of a conscience. I could not be happy knowing that I had so much money and could not spend a great deal of it helping those who cannot help themselves, like the starving in Africa.

I fully realize that a billion dollars is not what it used to be, and it doesn’t buy as much, but $50-60-70bn. That’s a mountain of money in any currency.

Poverty In India

For example, India has millions of people living below the poverty line and yet, this country currently tops the world rankings for the number of billionaires at 23 with a combined wealth of $99bn. In all good conscience, I could not live with myself if I did nothing to spread my over-abundance of wealth with the needy.

Bill Gates-A Rich Philanthropist

From what I know, Bill Gates is the only one who is publicly making use of his money by helping those in dire need, a fact that moved him from 1st to 2nd place in the world rankings, and got him the James C Morgan Global Humanitarian Award in 2006. Since he retired as head of Microsoft he has used his accumulated wealth to provide technology that will help lift people out of poverty and I applaud him for it.

I have to wonder why more of these mega-rich people do not do the same. Its a shame more of them don’t have a feeling of guilt when they count their money. I know I would!

Roy.

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