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Monthly Archives: August 2006

I’m back to work after a week-long holiday to sunny Devon which consisted mainly of laying on the beach doing absolutely nothing.

I also learned the following:

  • That I have a new-found loathing for traffic cones
  • That I have a new-found loathing for lorry drivers who place traffic cones under legally parked cars in order to get them towed so that they can fit their big dumbass lorries through tiny roads they should never be travelling down anyway.
  • That Richard Durrant is a really good guitarist and can do some very cool stuff live.
  • That the East Devon coastline is affectionately known as the Jurassic Coast.
  • That 10 years is about the age when a Renault Megane starts going senile.
  • That I can get quite trigger-happy when it comes to taking dusk pictures of the moon.

I think this is the most ridiculous thing I have ever heard this year so far. This is my local hospital, which is already in a lot of debt, and it’s being fined £2.5 million because it is treating patients too quickly. There is even a quote at the end of the article from a hospital spokeswoman saying that “We are working hard to ensure that the mistake will not be made again.” Seriously…what? How is this a mistake? I understand that it is fair to give all patients equal waiting times, but surely if there is spare capacity, then that capacity should be used? Even though some patients would have shorter waiting times than others, the entirety would be waiting for a shorter length of time on average. Why are hospitals getting penalised for being efficient?

It seems that it’s all down to the Primary Care Trusts, who hand out the money for treatments, not wanting to hand out too much money each year, and so patients suffer. They state that there must be a minimum 122 day waiting period – just so that it’s easier for them to manage their books.