Lamb to the slaughter

Did anyone else hear Norman Lamb, the Lib Dem Health spokesman, on the Today programme? Doctors and other NHS professionals are sick to death (groan!) with Labour's endless reorganisations, targets and Whitehall diktats, so Today is asking the three parties for their views. The first up was Mr. Lamb. Talk about 'Lamb to the slaughter'!

Lamb said that he didn't know too much about health as he'd only just been appointed to the role. But that didn't stop him from making the clownish suggestion that county councils should be involved in running the NHS. Is this in some misguided attempt at decentralisation? I'm all for subsidiarity, but this is a daft idea. Are county councils really so impressive at exercising their existing powers that we want to hand the NHS over to them too? The last thing we need is the 'municipalisation' of the NHS! Politicians (national and local) should butt out of clinical and operational matters in the NHS - and leave these to the professionals at a hospital trust level.

Tomorrow, I think, is Andrew Lansley's turn for the Conservatives.


David Allen said...

Don't expect honesty form any of the parties on the subject of the NHS _ they're all too terrified of being seen to challenge the orthodoxies of the mighty NHS, which long ago replaced religion as the new opium of the people. It would be useful if some of the media _ particularly TV _ started running documentaries looking at how other countries manage their healthcare _ the only comparison we ever get is heavily biased stories about the US. How come so few people in this country know how things are done in France, Germany etc. Healthcare seems to work better in most of the rest of Europe than in the UK _ but here, even otherwise sensible people turn into demented Stalinists when the subject of healthcare is raised.

Norfolk Blogger said...

As a friend of Norman's, I am biased. But Why shouldn;t County Councils be in charge of Primary Care Trusts ? We have a Norfolk Primary Care Trust running Norfolk Health services but nobody seems to have any recourse to take them to task for their decisions as they are appointed.

I don't think Norman was suggesting all services should be run by a COunty Council, but PCT's are ideal.

Oh, and he has a great reputation on health issues here in Norfolk.

Norfolk Blogger said...

David, are you propising the French system that the Tories proposed before the last election ? Are you going to tell the nurses that their pay will have to be cut by 25% so they earn the same as French nurses ?

David Allen said...

NB _ I certainly believe in local pay scales. A couple of middle level public sector workers can enjoy a great lifestyle in much of the north, wales/ scotland _ whereas the same couple on the same salaries would struggle to survive in London.