Freedom to choose male doctor

Currently, where there are group practices, a woman patient can choose to see a woman doctor where the problem is female-only (and sometimes even when it isn't).

But there are also problems that are male-only. Sometimes a male patient would feel more comfortable discussing his issue with a man because a woman — purely because of her female sex and for no other reason — would be out of touch.

This choice should be available to men.

Why is this idea important?

Currently, where there are group practices, a woman patient can choose to see a woman doctor where the problem is female-only (and sometimes even when it isn't).

But there are also problems that are male-only. Sometimes a male patient would feel more comfortable discussing his issue with a man because a woman — purely because of her female sex and for no other reason — would be out of touch.

This choice should be available to men.

Stop DWP medical assessments. Trust our doctors to know best!

I have had my medical conditions for over ten years but when I claimed Employment support allowance (ESA) I had to undergo a medical with ATOS, a private company. I already receive Disability living allowance and have done for several years.

Paying a private comapny to assess claimants medical conditions is a waste of money and unnecessary. A claimant's doctor, psychiatrist or consultant is considered competent emough to prescribe dangerous medications, so why are they not trusted to tick a few boxes for the DWP?

The amount of money wasted is not the only issue. The number of appeals for disability related benefits has risen sharply. Many of the appeals consist of the assessing doctors either making mistakes or not recording the claimant's medical details correctly. Removing this private company from undertaking these assessments would alleviate a lot of stress for disabled people and especially for people with mental health problems.

Many disabilities can be hidden and only a doctor who knows you can assess you fairly. The DWP's actions make it feel as if they consider every person who applies a liar. If their own doctors support the claim then surely that should be enough?

The medical assessment should also be valid for all health and disability related benfits. At present a person would need to be assessed separately for each benefit which doubles the cost.

Why is this idea important?

I have had my medical conditions for over ten years but when I claimed Employment support allowance (ESA) I had to undergo a medical with ATOS, a private company. I already receive Disability living allowance and have done for several years.

Paying a private comapny to assess claimants medical conditions is a waste of money and unnecessary. A claimant's doctor, psychiatrist or consultant is considered competent emough to prescribe dangerous medications, so why are they not trusted to tick a few boxes for the DWP?

The amount of money wasted is not the only issue. The number of appeals for disability related benefits has risen sharply. Many of the appeals consist of the assessing doctors either making mistakes or not recording the claimant's medical details correctly. Removing this private company from undertaking these assessments would alleviate a lot of stress for disabled people and especially for people with mental health problems.

Many disabilities can be hidden and only a doctor who knows you can assess you fairly. The DWP's actions make it feel as if they consider every person who applies a liar. If their own doctors support the claim then surely that should be enough?

The medical assessment should also be valid for all health and disability related benfits. At present a person would need to be assessed separately for each benefit which doubles the cost.

Amend health service Consultant private practice rules

Hospital Consultants are currently allowed to conduct private practice.  Whilst this is arguably fair, rules should be imposed around this as currently the NHS is being strangled by greedy medics who flout the rules which is on a par with the national MP Expenses scandal.

It is not uncommon for a hospital Consultant to be off-site doing private practice work (earning perhaps £1k for a half day work) whilst they should be on-site in their NHS hospital doing study or admin tasks.  They are therefore being paid by the NHS for time and work that is not being done, meanwhile they are off-site earning private income.  This has the effect of reducing the work the hospital can do (as the medic is not available) and increasing waiting lists … which ironically creates a need for private practice facilities!  Is this fraud?  Arguably so.  Would other NHS staff be allowed to work elsewhere whilst they should be onsite doing their (paid) core NHS role? 

Any NHS Consultant should be restricted to doing private practice to a set % of their NHS contracted time, perhaps 10%.  They should be made to publish in annual accounts copies of their defined NHS work plans (contracts) and be made to submit a monthly timesheet that they sign.  This should be audited and any instance of private practice work being found to occur in NHS time result in disciplinary and fine. 

For info, the bottom of payscale for an NHS consultant is around £80k.  Typically with allowances it is not uncommon for this to be 50% more, ie £120k.  Some are more than this.  This is then topped up by private work too.  Extra work for the NHS (eg on a Saturday AM) is paid at a lump sum of around £650 whereas a nurse would be paid a multiple (time and a half) of their hourly rate.  Why is there a disparity?  This is not equitable.

The taxpayer is unknowingly funding working practices that allow some people to financially gain hugely whilst strangling the ability to deliver healthcare.

Why is this idea important?

Hospital Consultants are currently allowed to conduct private practice.  Whilst this is arguably fair, rules should be imposed around this as currently the NHS is being strangled by greedy medics who flout the rules which is on a par with the national MP Expenses scandal.

It is not uncommon for a hospital Consultant to be off-site doing private practice work (earning perhaps £1k for a half day work) whilst they should be on-site in their NHS hospital doing study or admin tasks.  They are therefore being paid by the NHS for time and work that is not being done, meanwhile they are off-site earning private income.  This has the effect of reducing the work the hospital can do (as the medic is not available) and increasing waiting lists … which ironically creates a need for private practice facilities!  Is this fraud?  Arguably so.  Would other NHS staff be allowed to work elsewhere whilst they should be onsite doing their (paid) core NHS role? 

Any NHS Consultant should be restricted to doing private practice to a set % of their NHS contracted time, perhaps 10%.  They should be made to publish in annual accounts copies of their defined NHS work plans (contracts) and be made to submit a monthly timesheet that they sign.  This should be audited and any instance of private practice work being found to occur in NHS time result in disciplinary and fine. 

For info, the bottom of payscale for an NHS consultant is around £80k.  Typically with allowances it is not uncommon for this to be 50% more, ie £120k.  Some are more than this.  This is then topped up by private work too.  Extra work for the NHS (eg on a Saturday AM) is paid at a lump sum of around £650 whereas a nurse would be paid a multiple (time and a half) of their hourly rate.  Why is there a disparity?  This is not equitable.

The taxpayer is unknowingly funding working practices that allow some people to financially gain hugely whilst strangling the ability to deliver healthcare.

Revalidation of doctors – abolish it

The program of doctors' revalidation every 5 years is very expensive, putting a lot of pressure on doctors (beauricratic requirements and filling the forms) and there is no evidence that it will increase (or influence) patients' safety at all.
The famous Dr Shipman would pass the revalidation with honors …

Why is this idea important?

The program of doctors' revalidation every 5 years is very expensive, putting a lot of pressure on doctors (beauricratic requirements and filling the forms) and there is no evidence that it will increase (or influence) patients' safety at all.
The famous Dr Shipman would pass the revalidation with honors …