Tuesday, 5 April 2011

No to GP commissioning ... to ensure good decisions and to avoid conflicts of interest

MP's are heaping yet more pressure on the government now by suggesting GPs should not be allowed to take control of the budget all by themselves - take a look at this article in the Telegraph for instance.

The House of Commons' health committee said they should be joined by a range of staff including nurses and hospital doctors to decide how funds are spent.

The move would improve accountability and decision-making, with the MPs stating that the sole focus on family doctors involved in GP consortia is wrong.

Instead, they said the GP consortia should be re-named NHS commissioning authorities and be overseen by a board with representatives from other specialities.

"The expertise of other professionals was essential to ensure the best decisions were taken and to avoid conflicts of interest".

The MP's in the Health Committee are pointing out the obvious ... e.g. the need "to avoid conflicts of interest" ... Public health vs GP profits (from rationing healthcare).

NB their suggestion will not solve this problem entirely ... as a GP's decision to refer a person for treatment is taken in their head ... so most of the time people won't know whether their GP has rationed their care or not! Hence GP's should not be allowed to profit from decisions they make in any other way! NB if you think all GP's are honorable and trustworthy, just remember how they took the taxpayer to the cleaners the last time they re-negotiated their contracts (whilst dumping out of hours cover) ... which was unfortunately down to the incompetence of the last Government too!*

Let's see if the current Government, who said yesterday that they are 'pausing to listen', actually 'listen' ... or whether they're just trying to avoid a total massacre in the forthcoming local elections (before pressing on regardless).

* NB I raised this issue on Question Time at the time these changes were being pushed through, and a fellow blogger made the following point about a GP's recent comments on Question Time too. 

"In a recent BBC Question Time programme a GP from the area from which the programme was being broadcast stated that he was aware of a conspiracy amongst certain GP's to loot the NHS budget for their own financial interest, which, in his view would be detrimental to patient care".

Another honest and trustworthy GP "spilling the beans" and the public ignore this at their peril - as ignorance blinds ... but apathy kills!