Tuesday, November 17, 2009

24 hours to save the NHS

In 1997, Labour famously campaigned that voters had "24 hours to save the National Health Service" (who knew Google would give so many hits when searching on this phrase?)

Today it has been revealed that

  • up to a quarter of all patients in hospitals suffer from dementia
  • half of these patients leave hospital ina worse state than they arrive
  • in many cases nursing staff feel that don't have adequate training to deal with people with dementia

This is despite the NHS budget rising from £65bn in 2002-3 to 110bn in 2010-11, an increase about the same as the total budget for defence. The talk this year in the NHS has been about "cuts" and "shortfalls".

A simple calculation shows that NHS spending is approximately £1,800 for every man, woman and child. How can there be so many ongoing problems after so much has been spent? I hope that voters will remember Labour's 1997 slogan come the next election.

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