Friday, 29 May 2009

Tales from the Gulag or visiting a patient in ZaNu Labour’s NHS 003 Patient Line

The other privilege of one of (in part) ZaNu Labour’s great NHS hospital reforms for patients is Patient Line now called Hospedia. (If something is crap and does not work change its name and hope to fool the Public).

Have a look at its website it tells you virtually nothing about it. Certainly it tells you it is a “service”. We won’t link to it.

Martin Lewis, the money saving expert, has something to say about this here.

In the old days there was a patients’ room on a ward with a television which was so true Old Labour. The telly room was always full of smoke and there were only ever ITV soaps and football matches on the telly as male and female patients in their dressing gowns and slippers watched TV.

Dare to ask to watch a BBC2 program or ask if someone could stop smoking and you were dead meat.

There was usually a pay phone, which, if you had enough 2p and 10p pieces and the phone had not been vandalised, there was a chance you could communicate with the outside world and passively smoke to the Coronation Street theme tune as well.

As a result of Old Labour’s injustices, New Labour have done better. Smoking is now banned in NHS hospitals but not at their entrances where it serves as a smoke screen to confuse low flying MRSA insurgences.

They have denied free access to television and introduced Patient Line.

If you have not been in hospital this is a “service” provided by the “free market” that is current New Labour NHS policy for patients for whom they are responsible.

You can use it to:

watch TV (for a price)

receive phone calls (for a price)

use the internet (for a price)

and even

play games (for a price).

Furthermore according to Patient Line plc for the “Long stay patient” -

(clearly, due to the increased productivity of NHS care no one has an illness lasting more than 3 days, as that is now a long “stay”).

you can pay £ 7.00 for TV alone for 3 days use.

The UK TV licence is £ 142.50 for 365 days or £ 0.39 a day. In prison the cost of a TV for a week is £1.00.

We at ND were asked by our relative to buy another £10.00 so they could watch TV as after several operations in the last 48 hours they were bored.

In 5 days they had been charged by the Party £20 to watch TV but had been out of it for 3 of these days. Furthermore because you can only pay in multiples of £10/£5.00/£3.50 depending your on stay time if you do not use the £3 on the card for something else (from Shaft a Patient Line) then this is non refundable unless you pay by credit/debit card.

Our relative did not take their card into hospital because they know what hospital security is like so this was not an option. Patient Line would not allow us to pay as the details on our card where different from those entered on the bedside console. We tried ringing the number no reply.

We are lucky, as we are over paid idle GPs on at least £ 250,000 (not) or 4.17 Hewitts per year.

(The Hewitt, is like the cubit, an ancient unit of measurement of currency equivalent to a former health minister’s bung for a British Telecom consultancy equivalent to £ 60,000 a year in addition to said MP’s pay and expenses).

So £20 would be pocket money if we did indeed get 4.17 Hewitts a year as the Party claim.

While trying to get our relative’s second card from a Patient Line machine that had been sabotaged by the cards on the machine advertising Patient Line being shoved into the slot to take your cash from you we spoke to a man who asked us how to use the machine to get a Patient Line card.

His son had multiple injuries and would be in hospital for weeks. He was retired and his son out of work and on benefits. The father’s comments were “we can’t afford that it is more per day than a TV licence and electricity just to watch TV? What is he going to do he can’t go anywhere for weeks”?

Perhaps if he commits the right crime he could get transferred to a hospital prison wing and get cheaper TV there?

If you have a captive ill audience what do you do for them if you are a caring Party?

Milk them of course.

While visiting our relative we have been toting up the costs of Gordon and Alan’s “free NHS”.

In the 5 days parking and TV have cost £ 35. If you were on a basic state pension(£ 95.25)would be 37% of your weekly income on “free healthcare”. Remember that does not include any phone calls to the patient.

Shaft a Patient Line gives you a dedicated phone next to a patient and charges calls at £0.39 per minute off peak and at £0.49 per minute (in Northernshire) at other times. You only find this out after you listen to a recorded Patient Line message of at least 45 seconds of spiel that you hear when you try to ring your loved one the costs being left to the end of the message.

This is before you can even speak to your relative so a nice little earner for Shaft a Patient Line.

Friends who have done this have found that the actual cost of Shaft a Patient Line phone call has been £2.00 per minute from mobiles or overseas. We await our next phone bill with interest.

Current BT calls to the USA from a landline at peak time are £ 0.23 a minute.

The most expensive international call by BT is £ 1.96 per minute to Cambodia, Diego Garcia, East Timor, French Polynesia, Marshall Island, Micronesia, Midway Island, New Caledonia, Samoa (Western), Soloman Islands, Tokelau, Tristan da Cunha, Wake Island and Wallis and Futuna.

All bar 3 are in the Pacific Ocean and Northernshire to Midway Island is a mere 6803 miles almost directly due North on a great circle route from Northernshire.

We do a lot of home visits to these countries and we usually ring patients before visiting so that is why we at ND Central know that calls to our patients here are so expensive. But ringing the other side of the world is cheaper than ringing a relative in hospital using Shaft a Patient Line from a mobile.

Praise be to the Party. No market only a monopoly in NHS care but a huge con in patient services.

Any one wonder why it took so long before mobiles were allowed in hospitals as some of the charges go to the hospitals? Hmmmm. Must put our thinking caps on re this one while patients and their relatives continue to be well shafted as they have for the last 12 years.

Thursday, 28 May 2009

Fit Notes are coming?

Just watched an item on one of the morning TV programs with a government Lord explaining the new fit note scheme. Pretty boring stuff as this has been smouldering away for years but his parting comment pricked up our ears. It went along the lines of it “will be computerized to reduce GPs work.”

The Fit Note is to be introduced in April 2010. Another Government scheme to reduce GPs work like extended hours? Prepare yourselves fellow resistance fighters for the inevitable: another over priced, inefficient, work generating waste of time and money like Choose and Book.

Praise be to the Party for its ever efficient use of computers to increase costs and workload in healthcare. Now if we could just find a cabinet minister to ask them which computer companies they will be using then we could buy share in these that will be funding their forthcoming retirement from politics . . .

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Tales from the Gulag or visiting a patient in ZaNu Labour’s NHS 002 Feeding

Food is not important to Party care. Good Comrades can feed themselves on nothing.

If you have ever been a patient in an NHS hospital visiting is a really important perk. Being in hospital is like being banged up in a prison. Every thing is controlled but not by you. Meals, when you can leave, medicines, go to the toilet etc. As an ill patient you are dependant on the system.

You do not choose your fellow inmates and, if as here in the over affluent areas of Northenshire, the usual response to a question is

“Yer what luv?”or “Eeh? What thar say yer f**king bastard?”

then, given your fellow inmates conversational skills, a visitor who speaks the Queen’s English and does not swear every second word is a really welcome break for a short hour or two.

Furthermore visitors can bring you something that is like a Red Cross parcel was in the Second World War to POWs.

Edible Food.

You can only survive so long on a daily diet of cabbage soup watered down to keep the price lower per meal that those in Her Majesty’s prisons or schools. So relatives often bring food parcels in at visiting time. Indeed if some relatives did not feed their relatives then they would literally starve (to death).

And they do link.

Compare our current relative’s care as an NHS inmate with another relative of ours who was treated in a private hospital as they were BUPA Positive. There were no problems with parking and it did not cost. Visiting was more flexible. This means that they could get as close to First World Care in the UK as one can up North and they did.

When, after major cardiothoracic surgery, they did not fancy the menu the chef was sent for by the nursing staff to ask if they could prepare anything for them as they complained they were hungry. The simple request for a ham and mustard sandwich meant that psychologically they felt better and were fed.

But “nurses” in the NHS no longer feed (see later) and they do not have kitchens on wards.

Praise be to the Party for progress. Food is no longer necessary to healthcare and every report on food in healthcare tell us this due to the high levels of malnourished patients.

Saturday, 23 May 2009

A rare consultation in Northernshire

Cannot believe our luck here in Northernshire. A patient came for a routine prescription check and mentioned their weight.

As any doctor knows weight is like MPs’ expense fiddles it is no one’s fault least of all the fiddler. They do after all not play the fiddle it just happens to them. The fact that doing everything right means they get fat(ter).

The usual line is “I cannot lose weight and it is going up . . .” but, wait for it, the triple is a coming:

1) I don’t eat anything (and you are fat?)

2) I always eat healthily (and you are fat?)

3) I am always on the go (and you are fat?)

“You’ve got to do something . . .”

Lets think about this and apply it to your car:

1) I don’t put any petrol in my car (and the tank is always full and gets fuller every day?)

2) I always put top quality petrol into my car (and the tank is always full and gets fuller every day?)

3) I always drive my car at 190mph all the time (and the tank is always full and gets fuller every day?).

Clearly there is never ever going to be an energy crisis if you believe obese patients as for some reason the usual laws of thermodynamics do not apply to them but do to their cars.

OK. Any doctor or nurse who hasn’t heard this is clearly someone who does not see patients. Look at our Chief Nursing Officer who I am sure will abide by all the rules re healthy eating and inactivity to maintain her lithe svelte figure.

Northern Doc’s Law of Nurse workload is that the “weight of a nurse is inversely proportional to work done”. Our medical students recognize this fundamental law instantly.

Returning to our consultation it was the fact that from the patient for the first time in years we heard them say “I know I am a bit overweight but I am eating less and doing more exercise and I have lost 5lbs”.

The bold text, if put together, gives the mysterious secret of how to lose weight in 4 words a secret known only to a select few here in Northernshire one of whom was this patient who proved it works.

Praise be to the Party for sending a flu leaflet to every home. Obesity could claim more lives over a longer period but what are they doing?

Fiddling while the Nation gets fatter as do their expenses.

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Tales from the Gulag or visiting a patient in ZaNu Labour’s NHS 001: Parking

At long, long, last our relative has finally had their surgery for cancer after a 98 day wait but remember the Party has decreed a 2 week wait for cancer referrals (Praise be to Gordon and Alan for the delivery of excellent NHS healthcare here in Northernshire).

Unfortunately our relative lives in a top 20 twenty “world class commissioning” PCT which means that choice is restricted by Comrade Commissioning Commissars via Choose and Book.

Our relative made the potentially “fatal” mistake (we are not talking in growing toe nails here) of “choosing” other than what the all knowing NHS Commissar managers has decided is best for them.

Remember NHS managers rarely have any medical knowledge. Some are failed nurses, failed social workers even ex receptionists here in Northernshire and so are far more experienced than anyone with a medical qualification (for example a “care apprentice”) will be as they have not seen patients or illness for years (if ever).

Exercise non Party choice, good comrade, and you wait. 98 days.

Choose Party “Choice” as did our relative’s co-workers with the same condition and you are in the next week at the local tractor farm.

The local NHS managers feel that keeping money in the local healthcare system is a far greater priority than giving patients the best possible care or what is otherwise known as NHS plc “Choice”.

Targets “met” but quality very suspect.

We come now to the issue of parking under ZaNu Labour.

In the good old days you could, as a visitor, park in a hospital car park for free. You still can in a private hospital car park with security as well. In the land of the Free, you may even be escorted at night to your vehicle by an armed security guard for no charge.

Park in the UK in the wrong place or for too long and you will be clamped. There is a 30 min wait time but how long does it take to get discharged? We will see later so if you naively use the 30 minute spot you will lose out.

But this is the third world or less that is the UK NHS.

Now as the efficient ”market” forces that ZaNu Labour have introduced using the communist system of one price for any commodity means that the NHS Management growth industry can only make money via car park charges not by providing healthcare. All the parking machines say the tax, sorry income, goes on “patient care”.

We shall see later how this money is being spent on “patient care”.

This is currently £3.00 per 4 hours here in Northernshire.

We were in a queue, 12 long all piling in coins to visit their loved ones, and the queue was growing. The comments from some of the comrade visitors and tax payers were:

Visiting is only 14.00-15.30 hrs and we are charged at 4 hours minimum for parking”.

Can’t they do better as we are over a barrel? Visit or not visit?”

“I feel so sorry for those poor MPs. I bet on their expenses they couldn’t afford to visit for every day for two weeks”.

These were some of the politer comments as two geriatric parking attendants tried to maximise income, sorry help patients’ relatives park, in the rapidly filling parking area by squeezing cars in a reasonably ordered manner into any nook or cranny.

The first time we went, in the 3 minutes it took to queue and get a ticket, the car park went from empty to full with attendants turning people (who wanted to visit their relatives who were patients) away.

That is really, really sad turning away income like that. The Managers must not be able to sleep at night as having to employ geriatrics to regulate parking must detract from their potential income stream.

How long does it take to visit patients in Gordon and Alan’s 12 years of “free” at the point of delivery NHS?

If you live locally then there is a 30 minutes drive (X2) to a centre of excellence BUT you have to arrive half an hour early to get a place and then 1.5 hours visiting assuming no blips.

If we go to the local shopping malls we don’t pay for parking. We only pay for what we buy. So you can go there on a whim, park and leave buying nothing.

Not so in the free at the point of delivery NHS care unless you live in Scotland or Wales and you don’t visit a PFI hospital in these countries.

The “market” (shopping) versus the “market” (New Labour’s NHS).

One of these works, the other?

Well draw your own conclusions.

How many employers will allow 3 hours a day for a week to visit a loved one?

15 hours out of 37.5 hours for an hour and a half’s visiting session or 7.5 hours visiting a week. Time clearly well spent hospital visiting = sponging.

So no time off.

Parking taxes - all ZaNu Labour NHS policy (except in Wales and Scotland) and no doubt extra parking managers too!

Praise be to the Party and its co-payment system still at work in England. But not in Scotland or Wales.

No Celtic discrimination here then comrades?

One NHS, one “United” Kingdom?

Not in healthcare or parking.

Thursday, 7 May 2009

NHS Rangers lead the way - the War on MRSA #6.

Listen up soldier here is another piece of medical (not) excellence to share with the world. The NHS Ranger Corps has been so busy with the swine flu pandemic that they have produced a booklet.

This, however, soldier has not distracted them from their ongoing war on MRSA.

Beat MRSA by getting GP practices to sign up to a “Clean Your Hands” campaign. Click a mouse to sign up to display a few posters and get the sucker GPs to buy loads of Grog (this blog post 2 Dec 2008 for more on Grog) at their expense and install Grog dispensers and hey MRSA in the community wiped out overnight.

Of course the Thickerazzi that thought of this forget that 60% of man and 40% of women do not wash their hands after going to the toilet or wash their hands after nose picking which are well known Party approved MRSA free zones.

However, the Public do put their hands on door handles in surgeries, shake their GPs and nurses hands, allow their children to trash surgeries and play with toys, touch screens to announce their presence, cough splutter, pee, sh*t and shoot up in GP and A&E toilets all of which are MRSA free zones like the patients themselves.

By focusing the attention of the staff on washing their hand with “spot inspections” and “hand washing audits” this will hopefully distract the public away from:

hospital overcrowding'

no isolation facilities,

no hands on nursing care,

hotbedding (the process where a patient dies and the next patient goes straight into the same bed without proper cleaning to avoid trolley waits),

a huge shortage of beds

and all the other factors that actually spread MRSA and other diseases.

During several recent attendances at outpatient clinics and hospital wards we have only ever seen one person called a visitor use the Grog dispenser so showing that the Public are not the source of MRSA which we know as only doctors and nurses carry it as they are the only ones who use the bottles of Grog.

Lead on NHS Rangers!

MRSA cured by NHS managers who live in the real world where if tea is late by 10 minutes it is an EMERGENCY.

However, if the mouse has been clicked, and all the boxes ticked, all is well in the world of the elite NHS Ranger Corp. Clean Your Hands will save the world (when all the boxes are ticked).

Praise be to the Party and its elite Ranger Corps.

What will they “think” of next . . . ?

Friday, 1 May 2009

The Cancer Clock has finally stopped

This week, across the Pond, President Obama has celebrated his first 100 days in office. Here, ZaNu Labour and its ever efficient Management Health Service (MHS), will be celebrating another triumph as to how much better things are here now in the English NHS (Northernshire) as a result of all of their “reforms”.

For those readers good enough to have been following this blog will know that one of the teams’ relative’s has been waiting for cancer treatment.

At long, long, last this relative has been admitted to hospital to finally get their treatment. The clock above records how long it has taken.

Granted there appears to have been no extra readies to ease Gord the Holy’s little problem since we last published the clock but equally NHS cancer care is still on target since our last post as the clock above shows.

Now with a bit of quantitative easing it is easy to see that in fact our relative has only waited 14 days if one uses base 94 instead of the usual base 10 system of numbering.

(For any NHS managers reading, if they can count-or even read, 98 in base 10 = (10 times 9 = 90) add 8 equals (90+8)= 98.

If you use base 94 then 1 times 94 = (94 times 1) = 94 and then add 4 (94+4) equals 98 but it looks like 14 so you are OK and can go home when the complaint letter comes in as you can explain all of this to the patient concerned).

We digress. We know the NHS cancer target has been met. No NHS target is ever missed, Comrades.

So despite hearing, during the long real time wait, both Mr Brown and Mr Johnson bang on about the two week wait for cancer treatment as a triumph of ZaNu Labour’s new health service every time there has been a NHS cock up story in the last 3 months, the reality on the ground is in fact very different.

But nonetheless using base 94 means that there will be no MHS failing so no one will ever be accountable for this wait. It was never there.

Our relative, being in the trade, when they have received their many Party generated letters to meet the Party targets have been on the phone to point out how long they were being made to wait.

If they had not, another 22 days would have been added to their wait for “treatment” (sorry their out patient appointment) BEFORE they got any where near any treatment.

We have had no problems with those members of the medical or nursing teams we have encountered all of whom have been excellent.

We have no problems with the under paid and over worked medical secretaries who have been most excellent in responding to our relative’s requests re delays. They have brought forward appointments based on clinical need where they could.

We just want to ask why did it take so long?

Perhaps we could bleep the on call Politburo manager at the “world class” commissioning PCT that has commissioned our relative’s care this Bank Holiday and expect an instant response?

But it is May Day comrades, so the good comrade idiots will be celebrating their success at being a top “World Class” Commissioning Politburo. Much vodka and prawn crackers we suspect comrade workers will be heaped on all of the “World Class” Commissars that we have in Northernshire this weekend. They may even give themselves an extra May Day bank holiday for being such an “efficient” PCT?
We are now waiting on the skill of those on the front line to see where we go next. In them we trust.

We have several thoughts where the managers that have delayed treatment can go and where they can put certain objects. Unfortunately they would probably enjoy that as much as they enjoy screwing up the health service.

Praise be to the Party and its 2 week wait for cancer treatment. It has been a resounding success here in Northernshire.

Extra Praise be to the local “world class” commissioning managers who work so hard.

98 days to get cancer treatment. They will be resting on their laurels this weekend after all their hard work and vodka.