Advanced search

To think the NHS is in meltdown?

(97 Posts)
Notcontent Sat 13-Apr-19 04:58:53

Just had a horrendous experience. Had an accident at home in the evening - lots of blood (head wound). Went to my local A&E as there are no alternatives (no minor injuries walk in clinic or similar). Was told it would be 5 hour wait. Waited for nearly 6 hours only to be told it would be another few hours wait. About 30 people waiting and only two doctors on duty. Central London so very busy. The people doing the triage were referred to as nurses but I don’t think they were - the woman who saw me said she wasn’t qualified to provide an opinion on the severity of it or to put a dressing on. I had to leave without being attended to as I was close to fainting and the environment was terrible - not enough seats, drunk people lying on the floor, etc.

Sedona123 Sat 13-Apr-19 22:59:24

PlainSpeakingPlainTalking - great post. Labour's PFI deals are killing the NHS.

Our local hospital has a new PFI wing which opened in 2010. Cost £148 million to build, but will have cost taxpayers £766 million when the contact finally ends in 2043. That's about £23 million per year that the hospital has to pay before budgeting for anything else.

The hospital is completely crap too. Massive problem finding a parking space, then inside the most enormous wide corridors (about 8 metres wide!), and the tiniest waiting rooms and toilets. How on earth anyone looked at the plans and thought they were a good idea, I have no idea. Clinics tend to run at least 2 hours behind too.

bananasandwicheseveryday Sat 13-Apr-19 20:54:12


I think children get seen quicker

I'm not sure they do. At least, not at our local a&e.

A little while back DIL took dgs to the gp who was sufficiently worried about him to give DIL a letter to take him straight to a&e to be seen by a paediatrician. We arrived at a&e and joined the queue for triage. We waited in that queue for an hour and a half. As did the week old twins immediately in front of us, along with their mother who was seven days post caesarian. After being triaged, we were sent through to children's a&e, where there were two people in front of us. We waited another hour and forty five minutes to be triaged by that department. And then the long wait to be seen by a doctor. So, another hour or so. And when the doctor finally arrived, she got arsey with DIL about the gp letter. And to cap it all, because this eight month old baby could not produce a urine sample on demand (dehydration and not eating or drinking was the reason he was there), the doctor eventually (at 3:30 am) told DIL and DS to take dgs home and if no improvement the next day, to bring him back! So they had been there nine hours by the time they left. And during this whole time, one of the two patients who had been waiting ahead of us, was still waiting. He had been waiting since 3pm for someone to put a cast on the arm he had broken that afternoon.

I sincerely hope that this was just a one-off poor experience, but I fear it is all too commonplace.

PlainSpeakingStraightTalking Sat 13-Apr-19 20:35:18

The NHS went into red when the Tories came into power. Yet people keep voting them in.

Bollox. Sorry but bollox. you get what you vote for and apparently some fuckwits voted for Tony Blair and his magic PFI schemes - which caused this poxy mess (and in schools too). My local trust pays back 50% of its government funding in PFI interest. This IS NOT a conservative driven issue.

Typical Labour, borrow borrow borrow until bankrupt, then complain that the belts have to be tightened.

Tony Blair is following in the footsteps of John Prescott and Gordon Brown, who have already insisted PFI is speeding up the construction of new schools and hospitals.

It is time to acknowledge that the 1945 settlement was a product of its time and we must not be a prisoner of it

Tony Blair
The persuasion effort comes as unions demand a temporary halt to all new PFI projects while an independent review is carried out.
Mr Blair is launching a pamphlet on Friday to trumpet the merits of using private money to fund new hospitals and schools and stresses that unions will not be allowed a veto on public service reform.
Even more must be done to encourage private companies to become involved in providing public services, he argues.
Trapped warning
Mr Blair insists that hospitals and schools being built under PFI are being delivered on time and within budget.
His pamphlet has been published in the Guardian newspaper.
In it, Mr Blair warns: "Only if we make the necessary changes to our public services will we be able to say this Labour government lived up to the high ideals and practical achievements of the government of 1945.

BasilBrushes Sat 13-Apr-19 20:19:39

That’s exactly what it’s going back to. You’ll have one or two qualified nurses on shift and the rest will be NAs and HCAs.

Grumpbum123 Sat 13-Apr-19 17:57:33

When I qualified we were just getting rid of the enrolled nurse, those who did everything except drugs..... oh look we are back there again with nursing associates

Polarbearflavour Sat 13-Apr-19 16:24:23

I’ve heard numerous times that nursing associates / assistant practitioners will be the bulk of nursing staff going forward. Supported by healthcare assistants with a band 5 staff nurse on each shift to co-ordinate. I wonder if they will have band 4s doing medication next!

After all, cheaper to pay band 4s and with the growing shortage of registered nurses maybe that will be the next plan.

LesLavandes Sat 13-Apr-19 15:38:19

I think children get seen quicker

BasilBrushes Sat 13-Apr-19 15:18:37

As far as a know, students aren’t allowed to canulate. We weren’t!

The new students will, look at the how student training is changing along with the nursing associates and the new NMC standards. They will be qualifying with new skill sets.

Thelovecats85 Sat 13-Apr-19 15:17:55

It depends on the hospital and the time. My ds has had few A&E admissions and they have always been very good. But he is a vulnerable child and is always seen as a priority.

I've also attended A&E after falls and always been treated well and seen in a decent time frame.

We have had major problems with operation waiting times, joined up care and different hospitals communicating with each other though.

Grumpbum123 Sat 13-Apr-19 15:16:49

I find it even scarier the suggestion that some students could come out as prescribers something that shouldn’t be undertook until you’ve a huge amount of experience. For instance I work as a nurse specialist and it took 7 years before I could be sponsored to do my independent prescriber course which was eventually sponsored by a drug company the idea that students may be able to prescribe independently (remember this means everything except anabolic steroids) is truly frightening

GregoryPeckingDuck Sat 13-Apr-19 15:14:45

This has been the case for years. Too many users not enough funding. People either need to pay more or accept that the NHS can’t offer comprehensive treatment. A&E is absolutely the last area where these kinds of cuts should be made because there is no private alternative. There might be money in starting one though. Anyone want to go splitsies on find a private minor injuries with me? We’ll make a fortune.

Polarbearflavour Sat 13-Apr-19 15:11:51

I’ve been a student nurse (degree) and I would never had dreamed of saying no to bed making etc. Most of my time on placement was spent being an unpaid HCA.

A student who refuses to clean vomit and deal with bedpans won’t pass training. My student placement book was filled with tasks like helping patients with essential care which had to be ticked off my by mentor. And signed.

As far as a know, students aren’t allowed to canulate. We weren’t!

KissingInTheRain Sat 13-Apr-19 15:11:01

There’s a good argument for taking money out of the NHS and spending it elsewhere: legal aid, the prison service, childcare, schools etc. A lot of the social problems we have, that lead to physical and psychiatric problems, are caused by a dearth of general social support.

But while the gaping maw of the NHS is open we’ll keep shovelling money into it.

But then things like the parole service, anti-drugs programmes, day centres for the elderly and legal aid in the family courts aren’t as catchy topics as A&E waiting times.

adayatthebeach Sat 13-Apr-19 15:05:34

PlainspeakingStraightTalking I guess you’d of told Natasha Richardson “oh it’s just a bump”. hmm

Jayblue Sat 13-Apr-19 14:57:31

I do agree the NHS is really struggling right now, and there has been a lot of short-sightedness in terms of staff recruitment (both doctors and nurses). A lot of out of hours services have been shut down or are not 24 hours, which doesn't help reduce the strain on A and E. The lack of GP appointments also doesn't help as people's complaints may get worse before they can be seen, or they may feel they can't wait for an appointment to be available.

I will admit to having recently gone to A and E for something probably not A and E worthy, but despite living in a major city, there were no out of hours services available and I was in a huge amount of pain on a Sunday and really felt unable to wait 24 hours to see a doctor (assuming I could even get an appointment on the Monday). I expected to have a long wait, but was actually in and out within 3 hours.

IMO, we could easily fund a proper NHS still, if that was our priority as a country. If health and social care was also properly funded, that would help massively, as it would take the strain away from hospitals and mean that less people got into crisis in the first place. There might also be some places for bringing in charges such as charges for missed appointments or fines for violence against staff.

I do think that the tories have been very successful in making the narrative one of "we can't possibly pay for X, Y or Z", but I don't think that's true. If we weren't wasting billions of pounds on Brexit, for example, and if we decided on our priorities as a country, we absolutely could still fund the NHS, especially if there was more joined up thinking, rather than just slashing everything to the bone and leaving the NHS to pick up the pieces.

justasking111 Sat 13-Apr-19 14:53:04

Everyone blaming the tories, they are not in charge in Scotland, Wales or N. Ireland, yet it is still in such a mess in those places. I was following a story of a pregnant mum in Scotland in here recently, her ongoing fight with the NHS and a high risk pregnancy was frightening.

It is much bigger than this imo.

NaturatintGoldenChestnut Sat 13-Apr-19 14:47:20

The NHS went into red when the Tories came into power. Yet people keep voting them in.

This. 100%.

Kolo Sat 13-Apr-19 14:46:47

Yes, the NHS is on its knees. The biggest reason for this is lack of funding, to the NHS and to other public services. The nhs is more and more frequently being forced into using resources to deal with problems that are down to cuts to MH services, social care etc. Beds are being kept full as social services don’t have the resources to care for a vulnerable elderly person, for example. Ambulances and a&e are using up time on people in MH crisis, because there’s nowhere else for that person to turn. People are turning up at a&e because they are scared and not able to get an appointment with their GP for 3 weeks.

It’s a despicable situation, and we should be furious at the gvt for all these cuts to nhs, police, social services, mh services.

For what it’s worth, I’ve had some very differing experiences in a&e. Last year, when my son was very seriously ill, the staff noticed immediately and all the resources were directed straight to us to enable my son to eventually recover. A couple of weeks ago I took the same son to the same a&e on a Friday evening with a bump on his head, and we had to wait for hours and hours, because we weren’t priority. I think it should be better, but in the current climate, I’m happy to wait in a place where I trust that there’s lots of care and skill and who will notice and take action if my child deteriorates. If they’re busy with priority cases, I’ll just wait our turn knowing we’ve been the priority before.

Grumpbum123 Sat 13-Apr-19 14:43:50

Believe me I don’t tolerate students telling me that

justasking111 Sat 13-Apr-19 14:40:50

My friend has worked in reception for a private clinic for a number of years. They now have a much longer waiting list to be seen because so many people who are retired with a downsized home cash pot have given up on the NHS. She says the reception is rammed every day with people waiting to see consultants.

Our GP`s now ask as a matter of course when referring to a consultant if a patient has private cover. They are happy to write a referral letter.

So to answer the OP yes in our area the NHS is in melt down.

NoBaggyPants Sat 13-Apr-19 14:32:33

A&E is often clogged up with people who should not be there - lots if posts on here asking if should go there with non-energency conditions and nearly always told to go.

Because it's near impossible to get a GP appointment in a timely fashion. Lack of GP services means minor issues becoming far more serious, or having the potential to become so, hence people turning up at A&E.

Collectingcpd Sat 13-Apr-19 14:27:33

Very true about students. I asked oneto make a trolley up for me (while I went to get the patient from the waiting room). She said to me “the linen cupboard is over there”. This isn’t about pulling rank (I’m a consultant), it’s about working as a team. I make up trolleys every single shift (no I don’t think it’s a good use of my time or expertise but if I was to wait until the trolleys were made up I’d probably never see any patients). This particular student clearly thought making up a trolley was beneath her.........but it was ok to make the consultant do it hmm.

BasilBrushes Sat 13-Apr-19 14:26:06

Saying "I dont do vomit/incontinence/helping elderly ladies eat their dinner and still qualifying as a nurse shouldn't be an option.

As a mentor I just wouldn’t tolerate that. You either do that and realise that nursing is about all patient care, or you can go home.

BarbarianMum Sat 13-Apr-19 14:19:49

It's not about not having a degree - or at least I dont think it is - but you need a course that encompasses and includes the routine yet vital caring stuff. Saying "I dont do vomit/incontinence/helping elderly ladies eat their dinner and still qualifying as a nurse shouldn't be an option.

BasilBrushes Sat 13-Apr-19 14:17:15

Students are also now like paying customers I’ve had students tell me that as they are paying tuition fees they will not be cleaning up an incontinent patient, touching vomit or doing scheduled shifts they want to choose.
It’s in a sorry state

This is very true. Basic nursing care seems to have escaped some students, they see it as beneath them, and some of them need to leave the attitude at home. Anyway all that will be left to the NAs now that training is changing. The new students will be able to cannulate but will they be able to make a bed?

Join the discussion

Registering is free, quick, and means you can join in the discussion, watch threads, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Get started »