Monday, 16 February 2015
Why do Doctors want to kill the UK?
More relevantly perhaps is that in recent years the Doctors of the UK have started to make plays which affect and potentially destabilise the whole country.
The first battle was around pay and working conditions. The EU had implemented the working time directive and this made the lives of junior doctors impossible - they had been asked to work crazy 90 hour plus weeks. Also Labour wanted to implement some reforms of the NHS which the BMA was against.
So Labour happily drew up new contracts, which managed to have both shorter hours and extensive 'overtime' for GP's. Doctors were now earning 20% more for doing the same of less work. This at a time when the UK was just beginning to spend more on the NHS but was also starting to run a deficit during the high point of the economic boom.
The second major battle has been around immigration. Not just of actual doctors, which is a separate topic, but of treating immigrants. Doctors have long claimed under the spurious 'hippocratic oath', that they be allowed to treat anyone who appears before them (less than 50% of British Medical Students 'take' this oath anyway). As immigration soared after 1997, so the costs of treating health tourists did too. Doctors want nothing to do with controlling this, but at the same time demanded more money and are always keen to stick the knife into 'hospital administrators.' This classic tactic plays well with Labour who always rant on about how many more nurses and doctors they can have. However, for everyone else, what does it matter if we have more supply of doctors and nurses (and indeed treatments and facilities) if demand grows exponentially.
Then finally today, another example raises its head. David Cameron and the Government are keen to reduce benefits of those who are able to help themselves but choose not to. So targeting Obese people and drug addicts who are in receipt of long-term benefits for their condition. This is not an article about the rights and wrongs of the policy. Here is to show Tory MP Dr. Sarah Wollaston is against this policy as it is not for Doctor's to implement Government policy and not for them to withdraw or prescribe treatments to patients without their consent.
To me this position is untenable, the Government pays the salaries of the public sector and the Government has to balance the books and make hard choices - it is why all Governments are always unpopular after all.
The above three cases show that Doctors consider themselves above the rule of Government despite working for it. The Health budget is 15%+ of Government spending and increasing out of control. Yet it is not for the Doctors to do anything at all to help, except to say 'its not my problem.' For the finances and long-term stability of the UK this is a huge imposition and not one that anyone can do anything about via the ballot box - it is a calissic case of producer caputre.
The Doctors in many areas are hold the future of the Country literally in their hands. This is a huge problem for the Country as they have the power of life and death and are vested with such moral authority - it is a great argument for privatising more of the NHS so as to remove the leaden hand of the Doctors from Government policy.