I caught quite a few BBC news bulletins yesterday and was left under the impression that the NHS was in meltdown, especially in A&E which has had its ‘worst week on record’, and from what I gathered it is due to a reckless lack of resources…apparently.
Here is a clue as to why the BBC’s coverage might be less than honest:
The scale of the drop is causing concern not only to the health service, but to the government too with an election just around the corner.
Here the BBC makes no mention of the real causes of the innundation at A&E in the last week:
Oh…that last one gives a hint as to one of the real reasons but then instantly dismisses it as being too early in Winter for it to occur:
A&E units across the UK are struggling to hit their waiting time target as winter hits, latest figures show.
Demands on the NHS tend to increase during the colder months because of illnesses like flu and norovirus.
But with winter just getting under way, pressures are already reaching record levels.
That last sentence suggesting the NHS is buckling already before such illnesses make an impact.
Is that true?
Here this Express article suggests not:
With flu levels at their highest seasonal level since 2011, NHS England revealed there had been 111,062 emergency admissions last week.
There were also 440,428 patients at A&E departments – more than 24,000 up on the same week last year.
Casualty wards could hit major difficulties if the numbers suffering from flu and norovirus continue to rise, experts warned.
Public Health England data showed flu infection rates last week were 66 per cent higher than last year.
The Telegraph reports:
Rates of norovirus are more than a third higher than last year, while flu is at the highest level for three years.
The BBC merely mentions the illnesses as a future pressure on the NHS, one that isn’t happening yet quoting this but failing to bring us the news of the record levels of flu and norovirus already happening:
So what next? “Predictions are very hard to make,” says Chris Hopson, of NHS Providers, which represents hospitals. “What we don’t know is what will happen with Norovirus or flu.
But it seems we do know…..the Express and the Telegraph reporting so.
The BBC prefers to emphasises and concentrate on other causes of pressure on A&E.
The BBC tells us that ‘attendances are going up across the UK ‘ but fails to say why…that GP services are so hopeless that people head to A&E instead…and that with the massive population growth from immmigration there is even more pressure both on GPs and A&E…..the BBC merely tells us that ‘GP surgeries are struggling to cope with unprecedented levels of demand.’
The Guardian telling us that GPs get an extra 40 million consultations a year in 2012, presumably more now…‘The number of consultations has increased – from 300m in 2008 to 340m in 2012 – and doctors are seeing more patients with complex needs.’….but it also doesn’t mention immigration…..preferring instead to blame an ageing population.
The BBC tries to blame cuts in social care budgets but offers no proof or analysis:
A significant factor in this is the squeeze on councils’ social care budgets. Many of the patients who end up in hospital are frail and elderly, and when they are ready to be released need support in the community to get back on their feet. If it’s not there, they have to stay in hospital, which occupies a bed often needed for other patients.
The BBC goes on to blame the GP failure to cope on the government of the day for imposing heavy workloads:
Both the Royal College of GPs and British Medical Association have been vocal about the workload their members are facing.
A recent BMA survey found three quarters of doctors said their caseload was “unsustainable” – and that seems to have started impacting on patients, as latest data from the official NHS England patient survey shows they are finding it more difficult to get an appointment.
No mention that Labour’s reworking of the GP contract gave them huge amounts of money in return for less work…..one aspect of why people can’t get an appointment…the other being the huge influx of immigrants and the massive number registering at GP surgeries.
Listning to some of Peter Allen today and we were led to understand that the problem with GPs was really one of too much paperwork and bureaucracy…GPs were buckling under a mountain of the stuff apparently…so again the government is to blame….no suggestion of what that paperwork is for and why it is imposed…and no suggestion that the GPs employ, with the large budget they are given, someone to do that work.
So a genuine story about flu and norovirus at very high levels is ignored and in its place the BBC brings us a highly political ‘analysis’ of why the NHS is under pressure…..government imposed bureaucracy and an ever increasing workload (unattributed to the major cause) imposed on the poor GPs, an NHS crippled by a failing structure and lack of funding, and cuts to council budgets.
Must be an election coming.