Despite ongoing bewilderment as to how legislation is being implemented before it reaches the statute books, the reforms are well under way. Some GP’s are knee deep in commissioning plans, primary care trusts have accepted their fate as they shed staff and hospital trusts face a confusing and cash strapped future.
A BBC interview with an apparent supporter of the Bill polarised all my fears about these changes in the space of just three minutes this evening. As I was listening to the interview with Dr Rishabh Prasad, a GP from a Leicester medical centre, for just a few moments I was nearly swayed into thinking that perhaps giving GPs a very large slice of the NHS cake could work. The enthusiastic doctor explained how he believed that the reforms could promote innovation and how frustrated he had been previously in trying to set up a local study into deep vein thrombosis. But then he admitted that patients may not be happy with the changes that GPs’ new responsibilities may bring
The BBC health correspondent mentioned in her report that practices were already having to provide extra cover to free up GP time for commissioning projects. Dr Prasad then continued (and I quote) ‘As we pull GPs away from front line clinical work, there may be a disruption of service, not less of a service, but you may not be able to see the doctor you want or you normally see because they will be doing other things…..as a GP I can’t be in two places at once… I can’t be chairing some meeting and be here seeing patients. It will be interesting to see what happens in the next 5 years’
Mmm, chairing some meeting or seeing patients? – I know how I would rather my GP spent his or her time.
I do agree with Dr Prasad on one point though. It will be interesting to see what happens in the next 5 years. Very interesting.