White doctors in London are six times more likely to be offered jobs than black doctors | The BMJ


White doctors applying for medical posts in London are six times more likely to be offered a job than black applicants, figures released under the Freedom of Information Act show.The new data also show that white doctors are four times more likely to be successful than Asian candidates or candidates from a mixed ethnic background.The figures were uncovered by Sheila Cunliffe, a senior human resources professional who works in workforce transformation across the NHS and the wider public sector. Cunliffe sent freedom of information requests to all 18 NHS acute trusts in London asking for a breakdown by ethnicity for 2020-21 of the numbers of applicants for medical jobs, shortlisted candidates, …


When deeming the suitability of job applications for short listing, ethnicity and age should not be factors, so this information should be withheld in the short listing process. This would go some way to ensure interviews were, at least granted on ability, and it is a sad reflection on how short listing can be viewed.

However, discrimination would still be a factor at interview, so is it time to record interviews both audibly and visibly, so that there is more evidence than just a scoring sheet when the possibility of racial factors re non selection are raised.

This would go some way to minimise discrimination, but, unfortunately discrimination will never be fully done away with, unless the human factor is not present.

Also, the prospects of promotions and the methods of how it is done need to be more transparent.

This is a very sad reflection of the times, which after  many years racism is still regarded as being present. While I hope it is becoming less, this could be down to racists being more adept at covering their racist attitudes. Close monitoring of all aspects of employment need to be more present in all areas, especially employment and racism  be a criminal act with a very severe sentence.

 

 

Source: White doctors in London are six times more likely to be offered jobs than black doctors | The BMJ

GPs warn face-to-face appointments plan could lead to exodus of doctors | GPs | The Guardian


British Medical Association says blueprint could exacerbate GP shortage and see many leave the profession

 

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This may be correct to some extent, but is it the Government or the GPs who are out of touch, as I feel patients will largely welcome face to face, rather than the impersonal telephone appointments or video if you are lucky. In fact you are extremely lucky to get any form of appointment currently.

Currently my own health is not good so I am contacting my GP more often than I would normally have done and when I have managed to get through, after, more often than not, having been in a queue for going on 30 mins and sometimes a hour, only to be told all appointments have gone and never even offered any face to face, for those gone are only telephone appointments . My practice does not extend to video and telephone is the only form of communication as they have not joined the email age.

So are my practice offering face to face, who knows for the Receptionists are not forthcoming.

In the past, well before COVID, I have said that some face to face are not required, especially  if it is just to get results of tests, but then you were never offered telephone appointments, only face to face.

So it has gone from one extreme to another, when it should be a suitable mix.

I sometimes get the opinion that patients are just getting in the way and that no one in the practice cares anything for patients, this is, to some extent, also the way with hospital appointments, but not as grave as with GPs.

It is also one of the reasons why A&E visits are more in demand than previously, as people know when you get there you will be seen, even though the wait will be very lengthy. But not so with GPs for you are not allowed to enter a surgery unless you have a face to face appointment, when you can get one.

GPs could well be voting with their feet and yes they are under great pressure and well over worked, but so are very many of us.

But by not seeing patients many diagnosis are going unknown, for much of a diagnosis process is by observing patients, which can’t be done over a telephone and also not in some instances by video, if you can get them.

This is leading to many conditions not being diagnosed until it is too late, as many with, say, Cancer have found to their cost.

There is a shortage of GPs and if some are leaving this will make a serious situation very much worse, but there are shortages in many areas and in some of these health is also at stake, such as lack of social care, but the Government is virtually doing nothing on this.

All parties need to be listened to, being GPs, Government and patients and a suitable package worked out for all concerned.

I feel it is going to get much worse before there are any signs of any improvements.

Source: GPs warn face-to-face appointments plan could lead to exodus of doctors | GPs | The Guardian

Austerity in England linked to more than 50,000 extra deaths in five years | Public sector cuts | The Guardian


Researchers looked at 2010-2015 when Cameron cuts to NHS and social care were starting to bite

 

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This was inevitable, as the austerity cuts made Local Authorities and Health Authorities to make savings due to the cuts where savings could not realistically be made, so essential services were being run on a ‘shoe string’ and then the next and next and next, etc, meant that the shoe string was getting shorter and shorter.

If you had money then the cuts really did not touch you greatly, but for the masses who don’t have money, many only having an income which is just sufficient and with some not even sufficient, it touched them greatly.

So for those you could least afford it suffered the worst and are still doing so. The Prim e Minister Boris Johnson talks about leveling up, but he keeps saying this but has no idea what it means. For to level up the resources which have been taken away since 2010 need to be returned and then more. For even in 2010 the levels were not correct, and many were below the levels. To put right money needs to be invested in all areas which are insufficient and it will not be cheap.

A start would be to fund Social Care and then health so that all you need care can reasonably get it without having to think where the money is coming from. For Social Care needs to be funded just as the NHS is thereby making it free on the point of delivery, which it should always have been.

This was a major mistake in 1948 for then Social Care and health should have been looked at as one and be managed together, with public health included.

As it was health was looked after, but not social care, even though they were inter-related.

So, the paltry amounts that the Prime Minister announced some weeks ago fell way short of what is actually required and social care will by doing so will always be the poor relation as care services go.

So due to insufficient funding deaths will continue to soar due to the severe lack of care services.

 

Source: Austerity in England linked to more than 50,000 extra deaths in five years | Public sector cuts | The Guardian

Raising taxes will be a disaster for Britain – and here’s the proof


The last Labour government hiked the top tax rate to 50pc, and it was a policy disaster

 

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This is so true, but one that Labour fail to realise as they are so engrossed in trying to take from the assumed rich, that they fail to see that the very rich have the means to legally reduce their tax burden or even more leave the UK completely. Then you don’t even get the tax they were willing to pay before. It is a fine dividing line between what one is willing to pay and one is not. While those who are not rich have no option but to pay the tax they are requested to do.

So rather than increase tax rates considerably, why not just increase by 1% or 2% rather than 10% to bring in a top rate of 50%.

But, Conservatives are so determined not to increase tax for the rich, so they try to get more from the poor and not so rich. by increasing lower tax rates and also not increasing the initial tax free element.

By increasing the tax free element to line with the National Living Wage and increase rates slightly this would enable people to spend more and thereby get money from VAT and also increase slightly Capital Gains Tax and Inheritance Tax.

Also reverse all austerity cuts, thus allowing Local Authorities to create more job opportunities, rather than cut employment to save money. Also allowing more money to be made available for Social Care so the abysmal rates of pay could be eliminated and allow starting pay at £14 or even £15 per hour so encouraging more to enter the profession.

Alter Immigration requirements so all persons willing to work in the UK could do so and thereby enable more non-UK persons to enter the UK to work, while removing any non-UK persons who are not willing to work.

 

Source: Raising taxes will be a disaster for Britain – and here’s the proof

Pandora Papers: Tony and Cherie Blair avoided paying £312,000 in tax on London property by acquiring offshore firm | The Independent


Deal meant couple did not pay stamp duty on London townhouse bought in 2017 as an office for Ms Blair’s legal advisory firm

 

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So, yet again, the rich get richer and it may be legal, but is it socially acceptable.

If all these legal loopholes were done away with, perhaps the poor would not be fleeced again, why is it always those with money can have means to increase their wealth, but no matter what the poor do they always get poorer, thus again increasing the rich/poor gap.

Even when they do have an income increase, it is then taken into account to decrease their benefits, so where is the incentive to improve life.

 

Source: Pandora Papers: Tony and Cherie Blair avoided paying £312,000 in tax on London property by acquiring offshore firm | The Independent

Sarah Everard: Women Police Officers Are ‘Vilified’ For Reporting Misconduct Of Male Colleagues, Ex-Senior Cop Says | HuffPost UK


Former Met chief superintendent condemns “sexist” service that sees men “close ranks” and potentially abandon women while on duty.

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Yes, the Met commissioner Cressida Dick should go and should have gone long ago for there have been many incidents occurring under her tenure one being, Jean  Charles De Menezes, https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2019/feb/10/cressida-dick-de-menezes-shooting-met-police-desert-island-discs-radio-4, they say ‘lessons will be learnt’ but are they ever. In many instances the answer is no as for lessons to be learnt there as to be a concerted effort and in the Met is that concerted effort there, I fear not under Cressida Dick.

She is always too quick to come to the defense of the Met, as many in the Met are also. But it is not just Cressida who needs to go for many in the Met need to go also for the supporting officers under Cressida have not been supporting in good quality policing, only in supporting fellow officers, of which they were excellent.

But Police need to be there firstly for the public and if they are not should they be there.

It is not just how women are thought of both in and outwith the Police forces, but there are also serious concerns regarding Racism, membership of secret Societies and many more.

But is it just the Met, I fear not and this is an opportunity to have an in-depth investigation of not just the Met but every police force, but who would do it for are we trusting that the police can really police themselves. It needs to be done by a cross section of the public and also in the open.

There was a time when virtually everyone respected the Police, but now and for many years that is not so for that respect as changed to fear and mistrust.

Source: Sarah Everard: Women Police Officers Are ‘Vilified’ For Reporting Misconduct Of Male Colleagues, Ex-Senior Cop Says | HuffPost UK

Petrol queues: Doctors and emergency medics must be given priority access at petrol stations, says leading GP


Professor Dame Clare Gerada, former president of the Royal College of GPs, said: ‘If it’s going to go on for any length of time, then we’ve got to make sure that essential services take priority’

 

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Yes, this sounds good, but Doctors, nurses and emergency medics are not the only ones, for all those employed in health are essential, domestics, support workers, administration workers, then there  are  the police and fire services, care workers, in Residential/nursing homes, home carers, and other care workers, then the are workers in food supply organisations, utility workers and many others.

For these days no one organisation is an island, for we are all interdependent.

Professor Dame Clare Gerada is not thinking it through.

The whole employment structure in the UK needs to be looked at for in many ways we are all interdependent. The UK can’t, well certainly in the short term be solely dependent on the UK workforce and in many areas we do need persons from outside the UK, so the UK immigration policy needs to be flexible enough to accommodative all aspects of #employment.

 

Source: Petrol queues: Doctors and emergency medics must be given priority access at petrol stations, says leading GP

Ministers to crack down on overprescription of medicines on the NHS | The Independent


Government-commissioned review finds 10 per cent of drugs prescribed by primary care doctors are not wanted or needed

 

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This may or may not be true, for we can only know if we see how this conclusion was reached.

For medications are given to individuals and like all individuals we could all experience problems in many different ways.

Unfortunately the NHS does not treat people as individuals, especially in these times of non-face to face consultations. and then the problems in getting repeat consultations when needed. This is the same for both GP and hospital consultations.

They all treat the condition in a ‘one fits all’ approach, instead of a ‘person centred ‘ approach. Also and especially hospitals treat conditions in isolation, but many have multiple conditions and with GPs and some extent hospitals appointments are time time related., otherwise the appointment system get out of line and appointment times are then not met if appointment times are exceeded.

But, if you have more than one issue when seeing a GP and want to relate to your list, the GP could well say, just give me the top of your list and we will discuss the rest on your next appointment, and that is a major problem for when will that next appointment be, certainly not the next day or even the next week could be weeks or months. Even getting through to a GP surgery is a major exercise for it could take time to get even in a queue and then wait to be connected to the receptionists, to be then told all that days appointment haver been taken, no offer for any face to face for the appointments referred to are telephone appointments. It was said sometime ago that going on 80% of a GP consultation was from the patient and not any GP checks, but with a telephone appointment the only vehicle of communication is voice, no understanding of tone, body language and any other observations, so again the appointment is somewhat not sufficient.

As I said, even with a face to face you are usually restricted to around 10 mins, which gives no time for many patient to mention all they wish too and a patient is not an expert of medical issues only on their body and how they are feeling, much of which can’t be expressed over the phone.

Yes, GPs are over worked and there are too few of then, but don’t we all have stressed lives and who is to say how much effort it took a patient to try and get an appointment in the first place, is there any wonder why A&Es are so busy these days, as patients will mainly take going to A&E and suffer the long waits there for they know they will be seen, but again by an overworked, mainly junior doctor, not saying they are not fully trained, but long hours can lead to mistakes being made and they are made and one mistake is one too many.

The NHS has been underfunded for many years, but then so as Social Care which is another story, but as equally important, if not more so.

Money is not everything, for there has been much Government interventions into the NHS and mainly not for the better. Care of any nature is more than likely to be long term and costly.

Don’t get me wrong for we in the UK are extremely lucky to have the NHS, and I bless the Labour Government in the 40s for all their work and will to create the NHS in 1948. But in those days Doctors and Dentists and the BMA were not fully in favour of the NHS, as I am lead to believe they did not wish to lose their access to their private practices, so a compromise was reached. This was on the lines that if they agreed to be brought into the NHS not as employees, but as self employed they could retain their private practices and still work for the NHS. So even tough they are contracted to be in the NHS it is the practice and not the individual doctors. So they can withdraw from the NHS if they wish and still work on  private patients, which many |Dentists have done, so creating many problems for |NHS Dentistry, in that there is a very serious lack of capacity in NHS Dentistry, as so many people are experiencing in not being able to find an NHS dentist, and then afford it, for Dentistry was removed for ‘free at the point of delivery’ many years ago, although the NHS payment is subsidised through the NHS.

|Both the N HS and also Social Care need to be fully funded, but that takes money and one of then should not be left short to fund the other. This is not the fault solely of this Government, but of many previous Governments who have left the NHS somewhat underfunded and even more so, Social Care,  latter even true today, in fact very true and the question is will both be able to survive, especially social care, for the current lack of social care is already having an effect on the over use of the |N HS and if it were to get worse,which it is every day, or even disappear, the NHS would not be able to cope and that would mean disastrous consequences for all who need these services and have no ability to pay.

So urgent action is still required and the announcement a few weeks ago was way to little and way too late.

So medication is but one problem in many others. But I would not just say there is over prescription, which in some instances there will be, especially in some instances of antibiotics and in some anti depression. But please before any thing is done view the patient and not just the assumed overt prescribing.

 

 

Source: Ministers to crack down on overprescription of medicines on the NHS | The Independent

Almost one fifth of non-profit workers earn below the real living wage 


The National Living Wage is a disgrace as it is insufficient to live on.

Yes, the Government says there are various credits to claim, but the claiming process is very arduous and very time consuming and the barriers you have to overcome are very off-putting.

With some benefits it is as though you are deemed as claiming a benefit to which you are not entitled and in many instances the assessment process, especially face to face is very demeaning and in some instances insulting.

The Queen used to pay some of her staff below the Real Living Wage and was, I believe reported as saying ‘they can claim benefits’

How some are now paid.

Many Charities have restricted income which is not guaranteed and as they rely on donations and grants which have to be bid for, these grants are time limited may be for one year or could be up to 3 years, so Charities are continually having to submit bids for grants which may or may not be granted. The grants always come with attached conditions and to even bid you have to fit the expressed criteria, which can be very detailed.

With grants the organisations providing grants also only have a limited amount of money available to provide so all eligible bids will not be granted if the total amount of bids exceeds the amount available for when this as been reach there is no more available.

Source: Almost one fifth of non-profit workers earn below the real living wage 

Social Care will it survive, now that is the question?


Social care has been in decline for far too many years, due to successive governments lack of actions to do something to ensure that it will survive. Now we have a Prime Minister who has done something, but it is way too little and way, way too late. It would have been too late, if the necessary money was made available yesterday, but to say it will now not be available for 3 more years, is adding insult to injury. People ease in need of Social Care so deserve so much better, for their pain and suffering will continue and not just continue, but will get much worse and they could not well survive, especially 3 more years, but is that the outcome this Government is working to.

Many years of very serious underfunding has and is taking its toil, as it was in serious decline in 2010 when the Conservative Government decided to introduce austerity cuts and these went on for at least 10 years and then came COVID. The austerity cuts came to ensure Local Authorities (LAs) made savings in their budgets, when any fool could see there were no savings to be made, except Government fools. So to work to the reduced budgets services had to be cut, even essential services. and this eventually included Social Care, as many LAs tried to shield Social Services from cuts, but eventually they had to come and it was the persons in need of Social Care who were made to suffer and they still do, well those still alive do.

I applaud those who have decided to become employed in Social Care, however not all who came in were there for the benefit for whom they are caring for and some of the Care Provider when also in there to make profits from the services.

Those providers should not have been there but many still are and they are destroying the reputations of the Care Providers who do care, just as the care workers who don’t care are destroying the reputations of the care workers who do care and it is the persons in need of care who were left to suffer.

It is said that during the COVID Pandemic people were Clapping for carers, but were they for were they only clapping for certain carers, namely Nurses. Now, while those nurses did deserve the clapping they were not alone for there were many others in health who were as deserved as where the care workers in the care profession. Certainly those in Care and Nursing homes did, but they were not alone, for it is not just the elderly in care/nursing homes who are in receipt of care, as we are left to believe from those who should know better . such as , the Prime Minister and his fellow Ministers, all the MPs and those in the media. Can we blame many of the population for believing that Social care is just for the elderly, well I believe we can for children and any adults can, through no fault of their own find themselves in need of accessing Social acre, either on a temporary basis or on a more permanent basis. For the elderly will only be for some for a short period, when you look at the length of the ‘Cycle of Life’ as some are in need as soon as they are born and then until their dying day, but why are these persons not seen for they are there in full sight, well it is because the people are not seeing them, many because they do not want to, others because they can’t understand the whys and wherefores and some who couldn’t careless, for all they care about is themselves.

Then we have the unpaid carers who currently save the UK well over £132 Billion every year by them caring for their relatives, until they can care no more, by reason of their own death or they become ill and need support themselves.

There are many reasons why people do not enter the care profession, which include

  1. the derisory salary for the work undertaken, which is more likely to be around the National Living Wage of £8.91 per hour, rather than the Real Living Wage of £9.50 per hour. When this is compared that persons could earn well over £13 per hour working at Amazon, surely someone looking after your relatives lives should at least be earning £14 per hour
  2. insufficient persons in the UK who are willing to work in the Care Profession for any reason, when there are many outside the UK will but are unable to do so because of the UK’s Immigration policy. in the 1950s when there was a lack of works due to WWII the government of the day went to various countries to encourage workers to come to the UK, many from the Caribbean, while today there are many still in Europe and certainly in many of the African countries and others, if only they were given the opportunities.
  3. but there are also lack of travel expenses, suitable sick pay, unsocial hours payments and other terms and conditions

But firstly we need a Government who understands care and will do what is required, not the Paltry offer from Boris Johnson, who after COVID is insulting all care workers.

I am not saying the NHS is not deserving the money it has been offered, but both need to be the money required, for not to do so will see the complete demise of Social Care and this will then truly bring the eventual demise of the NHS, just because Boris and his Ministers in Crime are not prepared to take the required actions needed urgently.

So the actions need to be taken now for 3 years is much too long to wait.