Scandal highlights political failures in managing the NHS

From: TW Coxon, West Aukland Road, Darlington.

THE Stafford hospital scandal highlights, yet again, the deteriorating standards of care in the NHS.

Constant reorganisation of the structure, management straining of its personnel, particularly of nurses, so confused and disillusioned are those working in the service that it is inevitable that the Stafford situation will result. To use the NHS as a political football will always contribute to the shambles of late we now witness.

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The training of nurses, based on educational abilities to degree level, is wrong. Many bright potential nurses are pushed aside without even an interview because their academic record does not meet the university criteria.

Caring and practical ability seems to be of little importance and no-one seems to explore the potential, caring and professionalism of students wishing to become nurses. It seems if you cannot get a degree you cannot become a nurse. This is rubbish. When do senior nurses visit the wards these days? In my day, ward visits on a regular basis were a vital part of the duty of a senior nurse and was one way of gauging standards by talking and listening to both patients and staff.

When one considers the vast amounts of money that are given away in benefits for children who are not even living in this country, why should we be so concerned at the cost of health care for our people? Successive governments have wasted millions of pounds in changing or reorganising the service, usually by increasing levels of management and employing agencies outside their control and most staff no longer relate to their hospital or have any loyalty.

No, Mr Cameron, your policies on Europe, immigration, elderly care, health service provisions and police reforms are failures and the United Kingdom deserves better. As a lifelong Conservative, I am disillusioned and now looking for a party more concerned about its people and the country, and less about self-aggrandisement, than the existing three main parties we have today.

From: David Downs, Mountbatten Avenue, Sandal, Wakefield.

HAVING been told by the government ever since they came into power that we have to tighten our belts and reduce costs and general expenditure, I was appalled to read in Thomas Cawston’s article (Yorkshire Post, February 11) that the NHS has spent £13m on a report on the failings of NHS Trusts and that now David Cameron has just vowed to hold NHS managers to accountability.

I have suggested that the Conservatives had no more idea of improving the NHS than Labour, by threatening to reduce financial support to NHS Trusts for poor performances and that it would be more effective to hold the NHS management to account, with incompetence being rewarded with dismissal.

Why has it cost £13m and at least two years for Parliament to come to this conclusion, when the general public have been giving them the solution, free of charge, for the last two to three years? Please tell me Mr Cameron as to which government office I should submit my invoice.

From: Jeff Thomas, Strait Lane, Huby, Leeds.

THE recent reports in the Yorkshire Post on the NHS highlight areas of serious public concern, particularly with regard to the Mid Staffordshire problems.

As we all know, the NHS has some extremely dedicated and clever people in its employ, but sadly this is becoming overshadowed by various layers of chronically poor management, who have scant regard for patient care and put all their effort into league tables and money management which is poor at best. In my view, two steps could be taken now to make matters improve for the patients.

Firstly, each ward in the hospital should be totally managed by a matron/sister.

A significant part of the daily routine should be assigned to patient ‘TLC’ which is sadly lacking at the moment, I suspect because of management pressures to do jobs of a non-patient, caring nature.

Secondly, a day/shift system should be developed on a seven-day week basis for treatment of both ‘in and out patients’ to improve patient rehabilitation and throughput.