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From The Socialist newspaper, 26 September 2018

Fight plans for A&E appointment system - fight to save our NHS

NHS demonstration 30 June 2018, photo Paul Mattsson, photo Paul Mattsson

NHS demonstration 30 June 2018, photo Paul Mattsson, photo Paul Mattsson   (Click to enlarge)

Andrew Bromhall, NHS nurse, Swansea and West Wales Socialist Party

NHS England could introduce an "appointment system" in A&E departments as part of its proposed "NHS targets shake up". This makes me very angry, but it is not with disbelief that I read this latest preposterous idea.

In response to government pressure to meet waiting-time targets, it has been suggested that A&Es in England adopt a model which has recently been used in Denmark to meet its obligation to see 95% of patients within four hours of arrival. This would force the 22 million visitors to A&Es in England to call and book an appointment before arrival.

Professor Keith Willet, NHS director of acute care, would like to see a shift to the Danish system that was attempted in Copenhagen in 2014. It led to complaints that patients faced long delays getting through to busy phone lines. Some illnesses and diseases were misdiagnosed because the person assessing had no face-to-face contact with the patient.

A&E staff also expressed concern as to who would be responsible for triaging - deciding the order in which patients are treated - when they rang.

The Royal College of Emergency Medicine - the body that represents A&E doctors - totally rejects the idea of appointment systems. Its president Dr Taj Hassan stated: "I would be very surprised if this worked in the NHS. The NHS is full of innovated ideas that crash and burn".

Another idea recently suggested to improve efficiency is that targets for cataract and cancer treatment be watered down. This is indicative of the cavalier attitude that the government and capitalist class have towards the NHS.

The Socialist Party demands an NHS that is free at the point of use and operated under democratic, working class control.

Kick out the privateers and cutters, fund the NHS properly, and tackle the chronic under staffing which is the real threat to patient safety at the present time.

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In The Socialist 26 September 2018:


What we think

Militant was right - councils can fight cuts

Fight for a democratic, socialist Labour Party

Fighting for socialism amid capitalist chaos


Socialist Students

Students and workers unite and fight

Freshers fairs: socialist ideas chime with students


News

Private firms and toothless regulator to blame for trains chaos - nationalise rail now!

Fight plans for A&E appointment system - fight to save our NHS

Labour civil war rages in Enfield

Them & Us


Workplace

Who wants driver-only operation?

Hospitality workers coordinate historic strike

Strike vote: college staff want a pay rise

Compulsory redundancies stopped at Leicester University

Safety-critical airport workers continue strike

Glasgow workers striking for equal pay


Socialist Party reports and campaigns

Victory for Sheffield Save Our NHS

Residents push back Barking estate landlords

Brilliant sales at Labour Party conference

Directors' contempt for repressed workers

Huddersfield campaigners keep their powder dry


International socialist news and analysis

Trump's tariffs raise international tensions


Opinion

Powerful defence of the welfare state

The Socialist inbox


 

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