Friday, 5 November 2010

Ask me no questions and I’ll tell you no lies...

The American author Padgett Powell has just published a book that consists of sentences that are entirely questions. A strange concept, but it got me thinking how blogging is a perfect opportunity to ask questions that may never be answered.

So – in the light of the US and UK healthcare reforms, here are my questions for Barack Obama and Andrew Lansley (UK Secretary of State for Health)

Questions for Barack Obama:

·         Do you sometimes wish you hadn’t said ‘Yes we can?’
·         Do you think that the Republicans can block your health care reform plans now?
·         Considering that the Healthcare Reform Act is unpopular with half the population of the USA, do you wish that the Act have never been passed?
·         Have you considered how businesses can pay for the mandatory increased commitment to healthcare and the inflationary effect it will have on goods and services?
·         Do you really believe that such a thing as an Adult Child? (the act makes it mandatory for cover to be offered to children up to 26 years of age)
·         The world health organisation ranked the US at 37th for quality of healthcare – do you think your reforms will address the quality issue?
·         What about cost of healthcare – you promised that the cost of healthcare wouldn’t rise yet it is now projected that by 2019 the cost per family per year will have increased by $1000. Is this another case of ‘No we can’t?
·         Time to ‘repeal and replace’?

Questions for Andrew Lansley (UK Secretary of State for Health)

·         Do you think that the general public understand that with your plans for NHS reform you will be, in effect, passing 80% of the NHS budget to private contractors (GPs)?
·         Do you understand that ‘local’ is not always best?
·         Could you explain the difference between ‘targets’ and ‘outcomes’?
·         Do you appreciate the fantastic outcomes already achieved in hospital trusts and the value and knowledge of the specialist clinical teams working in hospitals?
·         What does consultation (regarding the government white paper) mean and who has the final decision on the changes laid out in the White Paper?
·         Do you accept that as this period of uncertainty and lack of clarity continues – we may lose some of the best leaders and strategic thinkers currently working in the NHS and how do you plan to address this?
·         You have stated that clinical teams will have more time to concentrate on patients and that data collection should be left to administrators. Yet you are planning to shave off £20 billion in administrative costs. Could you expand on how this will work please?
·         Consortia – who decides what, when, where and how?
·         Is the fact that your ex wife is a GP significant in your decision to hand £80 billion of the healthcare budget to GPs?

Well – there’s no harm in asking…….


Jan said...

Now you know the politicians are incapable of giving a straight answer...........and we all know that patients are the last to be considered in any NHS reform. I think I am far too cynical now.......

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