Sounds too good to be true, doesn’t it? Almost up there with personal injury lawyers and requests from Nigeria to help someone get their money out of a frozen bank account. But at the Preventive Health 2011 conference on 30th June, we were shown just what was possible in preventative health.
It was a packed day, with some excellent speakers. Dame Sally Davies, Chief Medical Officer, was passionate but pragmatic about the importance of prevention in the future of the nation’s health, and Dr Clare Gerada, Chair of the Royal College of GPs, spoke words that were music to my ears – that non-medical aspects of a patient’s life were important factors in dealing with ill-health. Cardiologist Dr Ameet Bakhai was hugely entertaining, and here is a doctor who actually prescribes T’ai Chi and meditation for stroke and heart attack patients – fantastic to hear!
Posted in Age UK London Blog
Tagged commissioning, Dame Sally Davies, Dr Ameet Bakhai, Dr Clare Gerada, Government, health, older, preventative, Professor Bryan Manning, Tai Chi, technology
There has been much in the press recently about the new role of GPs in commissioning NHS services, and many areas are already forming the shadow health boards that are going to deliver this change. Is it going to improve services or the nation’s health? Sadly I think this is doubtful.
Why? Well, first a quick story. There was once a farmer in Wales who was annoyed by local RAF aircraft. Because his barn was at the end of a long valley, RAF Tornado fighter bombers would use it as a target to practise low level bombing runs. The farmer got sick of the noise and one day went onto the barn roof and painted “!?#$ OFF BIGGLES!” in six foot high letters. The result? More planes! Every type of plane from Chipmink training planes to C130 Transports flew over because they thought it was funny and wanted to see it.
How does this link to GP commissioning? Well GPs are clinically trained to be symptom driven – you go with a condition and, like the farmer, they deal with what is presented to them. Their problem solving does not look at other factors like housing, finances or any of the thousand other things that affect our lives. And nor should they – GPs don’t go through all that training and debt to become social workers. Continue reading