13,000 people killed by the NHS.

(54 Posts)
MrJudgeyPants Tue 16-Jul-13 23:06:42

13000 people are believed to have died unnecessarily in a handful of NHS trusts. The Care Quality Commission, the organisation tasked with investigating this sort of thing, stands accused of covering up some of the worst excesses - including the use of superinjunctions, gagging orders and big money pay off's. Despite this, no one has lost their job, their pension or been publicly censured in any way even though manslaughter prosecutions may be appropriate. The service seems to be being run for the sole benefit of the bureaucracy (producer interest) and not for its patients.

Given that the state has comprehensively failed to manage our health care, is the time right to break up this monolith and privatise as much of it as possible (maintaining the free at the point of use premise) but having it organised and run along the same lines as the French healthcare system?

yamsareyammy Tue 16-Jul-13 23:12:09

hmm. That asumes that privitising it would be better. And I have a horrible suspicion that it would be a whole lot worse.
Whos to know.

niceguy2 Tue 16-Jul-13 23:12:53

Oh yeah...fucking great idea. Privatise the NHS so it's no longer accountable to the health secretary & government but instead to shareholders.....hmm

The NHS is far from perfect and there's definitely scope for improvement. But breaking it up? No politician is THAT stupid.

And how many people are treated successfully by the NHS each year compared to the dodgy statistic above?

I think the words 'are believed to' say it.

That is not proof.

60,000,000 are believed to be alive today because of the NHS.

MrJudgeyPants Tue 16-Jul-13 23:36:48

I don't see why a privatised service wouldn't still be accountable to a health secretary. Many privatised industries are still accountable to a minister somewhere. However, when the ministers are allegedly involved with the CQC's cover-up it begs the question "is the NHS too politicised?"

Incidentally, since 1993 there have been ten different ministers for health with each one only being in post for an average of two years. The NHS is reputed to be one of the biggest organisations on the planet so it doesn't deserve or need such a high churn rate within its senior management.

Also, niceguy, what the fuck do you mean 'dodgy statistic' - this is now a matter of public record that I'm quoting, not pulling the figures out of thin air!

joanofarchitrave Tue 16-Jul-13 23:52:37

"However tempting it may be, it is clinically meaningless and academically reckless to use such statistical measures to quantify actual numbers of avoidable deaths."

Bruce Keogh.

OddBoots Tue 16-Jul-13 23:58:13

That figure is only meaningful if we had figures from other systems gathered and analysed the same way from a statistically large enough sample.

EverythingInMjiniature Wed 17-Jul-13 00:12:32

If I could link on my phone to the excellent article explaining why this is bollocks I would. Essentially it is based on a widely derided statistical measure of standardised mortality that compares mortality in a particular trust to the mean. By definition, half of all trusts will have higher mortality than the mean, and will continue to do so even if mortality halves in all hospitals.

The only way to decide if a death could be avoided is to undertake an individual review of medical notes etc. This headline is not reporting that, just dodgy stats.

The cynic in me thinks stories like this are fed through government depts to erode public trust in the NHS and pave the way to privatisation. It seems to be working given some of the responses to this thread.

EverythingInMjiniature Wed 17-Jul-13 00:14:19

Sorry, having re-read thread I think most people are sceptical! blush

blondieminx Wed 17-Jul-13 00:19:34

Hmm, privatisation has worked so well in other sectors hmm

Sick people are not an asset that can be commoditised.

The scandal of this governments attack on the NHS is shameful. Funnily enough if you chip away at budgets and cut staff then service does suffer...except it's not bloody funny because people are literally dying.

Meanwhile Jeremy C Hunt has started the process of flogging off the health service to his Tory mates.

joanofarchitrave Wed 17-Jul-13 00:55:30

The NHS has a brand. Because it has a single brand with a lot of public affection, it has been protected to some extent from funding cuts. Social services, having no brand, have been cut to ribbons. Since they are all one service, really, this affects the NHS too, as there's nowhere to discharge people to, people can't leave hospital and remarkably quickly, ambulances start piling up in A&E entrances.

In order to be able to cut NHS funding, you will have to damage the brand. Who in this government used to work in PR and knows this stuff like the back of his hand? Who would know how to take a really superb piece of work like the Keogh report, which shines a fierce light onto the unacceptable and the substandard and gets buy-in through all levels of the organisations it studied, and turn it into a simple brand-damaging exercise?

I will do this government the favour of acknowledging that it genuinely believes that publicly run institutions are intrinsically worse than privately run ones, and that only the left-wing media and the chattering classes manage somehow to persuade voters that something so odd, so alien, so Soviet as the NHS should somehow survive into the 21st century.

In fact, I'm no longer against the privatisation of the NHS - if the country wants me to work in a different uniform for 50% of the money so that the cash can go to shareholders, whatever. I can see that we would lose some really unhelpful and unacceptable stuff along with the gift relationship, which will be irreplaceable. As long as we know what we're doing, and who's doing it, and why.

piprabbit Wed 17-Jul-13 01:05:33

There is no evidence that 13000 have been killed by anyone.

The Keogh Review doesn't mention any numbers. In fact Professor Sir Bruce Keogh has said "However tempting it may be, it is clinically meaningless and academically reckless to use such statistical measures to quantify actual numbers of avoidable deaths."

Saying 13000 people have been killed by the NHS is simply scaremongering of the worst sort.

yamsareyammy Wed 17-Jul-13 07:48:21

Interesting that you have put it in Politics and not elsewhere, such as In The News.
Is there a reason for that?

yamsareyammy Wed 17-Jul-13 07:51:11

Currently there are many people, men especially who are reluctant to go to their GPs in the first instance. For a whole lot of reasons.
Just think how many would not go in time or at all to the GP, or not "allow" other family members to go, if it had to be paid for.
That alone would "cause" thousands of deaths, or make injuries/ diseases, a whole lot worse.

MrJudgeyPants Wed 17-Jul-13 08:09:21

Yams. I put this in politics because I believe that the NHS is too politicised for its own good. Also, read my opening post again. I explicitly stated that the principle of health care which remains free at the point of use should be protected.

What is so wrong with the French health care system that trying to emulate it in this country arouses such passions?

yamsareyammy Wed 17-Jul-13 08:12:09

You need to explain how the French health care system works.

yamsareyammy Wed 17-Jul-13 08:13:40

But hang on. A family member has some experience of the French Health care system. And she ended up paying £200, for some physio [even with some travel insurance], that she would have got for free, and later did, on the NHS

Wuldric Wed 17-Jul-13 08:20:16

The healthcare system in France is not free at the point of delivery. A visit to the Doctors costs around 25 Euros. It's a very good and thorough check up, much more time is spent with patients, but it is still not free. I think that if I had filled in a mountain of paperwork I might have been able to reclaim that money, but frankly I didn't know where to start so didn't bother.

MiniTheMinx Thu 18-Jul-13 17:45:04

Given that the state has comprehensively failed to manage our health care, is the time right to break up this monolith and privatise as much of it as possible

Is the time right? too late really to discuss this because it is already happening.

CogitoErgoSometimes Sat 20-Jul-13 08:00:48

There does seem to be something fundamentally wrong with the way the NHS is organised and managed and I suspect it's a combination of finite budgets, the complacency of monopoly & the knee-jerk aversion to change that characterises anything that is massive, state-run and highly unionised. It's too simplistic to say 'privatise it' but I think there is a strong case for breaking it down into more manageable core functions, outsourcing (as already happens) where particular expertise is needed and commercialising where appropriate.

The procurement of medical supplies, for example, is an enormous chunk of the budget. This could be easily hived off to two or three specialist, commercial procurement companies who would then compete, as other retailers do, on price, quality and service to be the supplier of choice to hospitals and general practices.

Solopower1 Sat 20-Jul-13 18:27:42

All you want to do, MrJP, is collude with the government and media in dissing the NHSA so that people don't protest or try to protect it from privatisation.

There is no way our health will improve if the NHS is privatised. What will happen is that we will all have to take out health insurance and those who don't have it won't get treated, as in the US.

Solopower1 Sat 20-Jul-13 18:30:23

If an organisation is privatised, it has to make a profit. How on earth can you make a profit from ill people? Only by cutting down on staff training and numbers, rationing drugs and deciding who to treat on the basis of who is going to need less expensive treatments.

MrJudgeyPants Sun 21-Jul-13 00:12:10

On the contrary Solo, how much of the NHS budget is spent on middle management and bureaucracy? If those jobs were cut, I doubt anyone would notice.

Similarly, if each hospital had market pressure to adopt best practice, how much money would be saved?

All monopolies lead to complacency, I fail to see why there is an assumption that this doesn't apply to the NHS.

Finally, I'm not attacking the principle of free health care. There are already numerous examples where the state outsources vital work to the private sector which are perfectly sensible. I'm thinking of feeding the unemployed. No one in their right mind would suggest that the state should turn up on the doorstep with a basket of groceries each week - it's far more sensible to give them some cash and let the individual spend it as they see fit. This leads to more choice and better standards of food, better tailored to the needs of the individual, for a better price.

There is a need for the state to pay for health care, I just cannot see the need for it to be the state that provides that health care.

Solopower1 Sun 21-Jul-13 08:50:40

Not denying that money can be saved on bureaucracy and management. I remember life before the managers moved in on the NHS, in order, we were told, to make the NHS more efficient. Instead, they made it a lot worse, imo.

When you speak of a monopoly, you have it in your head that the NHS is a company that is in competition with other health care providers. How can that be if it is non-profit-making? What do you see the NHS as monopolising? What is it competing for?

There isn't a business model that can compare to the NHS because it isn't a business - and that's (one of) the mistakes that were made when the managers came in. They wanted to make it more 'efficient' ie to cut down on waste and make the money go further, but they thought they could do it by using a business model. You can't do that with the NHS, any more than you can do it with education. Of course there are some things the NHS could learn from business, but when the whole reason for its existence is not to make a profit, you can't just graft one system that is geared up to making a profit onto an entity with a completely different purpose.

You need to find another model.

Solopower1 Sun 21-Jul-13 08:51:50

I love thinking that my taxes go towards making someone's child better. What I hate is when the tax payers are duped into funding private companies, because, like private schools, they will set themselves up as charities and the govt will subsidise them. The govt will also have to pay companies to provide the most expenisive treatments and long-term care.

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