In keeping with the Christmas spirit, we wanted to create a wishlist of our own. This is a little different from the usual wishlist, below we highlight some of the key stories from this year and look at seven different aspects which we hope will improve as we move into 2015.
1. Increased Transparency
It is undeniable that every facet of the NHS should become more transparent, both when it comes to admitting to mistakes and also with regards to admitting how bad certain problems are so that they can be addressed proactively. It’s far easier to fix a problem that everyone acknowledges. A couple of months back we wrote about reports that one third of hospitals ignore patient complaints. However, the MyNHS Tool has been introduced in an attempt to make the NHS more transparent.
2. A Significant Reduction in Avoidable Errors
Earlier this year it was revealed that NHS Errors cost the taxpayer up to £2.5 billion per year. Many of these errors were avoidable and perpetuated the problem, as patients suffering from the likes of avoidable infections usually required additional healthcare. The Royal College of Nursing was quick to respond and blamed the lack of staffing on wards.
3. Effective Use of Resources
Just last week we reported on the NHS spending £640m on Management Consultants in 2014, more than twice what was spent in 2010. So far it has been unclear exactly what the NHS has gained from this huge expenditure. It was also revealed earlier this year that a couple working for the NHS had received combined redundancy payments of £1 Million. With the NHS being over-stretched, particularly during the Christmas period, surely just cutting management costs in 2015 will free up hundreds of millions of pounds that can be reinvested in patient care.
4. Pragmatism In Dealing With Issues
Whether we’re talking about increased waiting times in GP Surgeries or general concerns that the NHS is ‘at breaking point’, there is a distinct lack of pragmatism in dealing with these issues, with many politicians either downplaying or in denial about the issue in question, and many NHS staff and bodies quick to blame another department or the government. With the 2015 General Election fast approaching, as always the current government will be defending decisions that they have made, and the opposition will be picking apart decisions made about the NHS since the Election in 2010. However, wouldn’t it be far more sensible to focus on solutions and acknowledge that this is a very serious issue that must be addressed as soon as possible?
5. Early Diagnosis of Cauda Equina Syndrome
You may be aware that we have helped many clients claim for incorrect diagnosis of Cauda Equina Syndrome. This is a very serious condition that can be prevented if it is diagnosed early enough. Despite us working hard with charities such as Cauda Equina UK to raise awareness of the condition, it is still misdiagnosed on a regular basis. We created an infographic with an overview of the condition, common symptoms, and how it can be prevented. We encourage you to share this with your friends and family on Social Media.
We hope that all five of the areas on our ‘wishlist’ will be improved next year, and wish you a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.