A Quantum Leap: The abrupt change from one state to another

I’ve been a bit quiet over the summer as I have better things to do than get steamed up every time Jeremy takes a deep breath.

We all know contract changes are coming, with extra GP work geared to cutting Out of Hours pressures (costs?), but why is it that the money just trickles in afterwards, is never quite as much as you were promised, and still leaves you somehow much worse off with a bad taste in the mouth?

Quoting from the GP press:

“additional funding will be channelled to general practice to help support GPs’ new responsibilities, and will come from savings made by a reduction in unplanned admissions”

Eh? I had to read that twice. Think “Back to the Future”.

Albert Einstein showed that time is relative — his theory of special relativity says that time slows down or speeds up depending on how fast you move relative to something else, and events which appear simultaneous to a person in motion may not look simultaneous to someone who is standing still.

I suspect Jeremy is “in motion” here in some kind of bizarre time-loop, where he sees simultaneous initiatives, and results, which fund the initiatives. Spot the flaw. Those of us who are more “stationary” or rooted in the real world see a big time-gap, with events somehow appearing not to be in the correct order. Practices will have to gear up, take on new work, achieve reductions in A&E units where they have no control, and wait with their fingers crossed to see if any “savings” are realised to cover their costs, all without being “top-sliced” even if they do appear. It strikes me that the financial risk lies in general practice. What about giving us the money up-front with some risk guarantees?

I remember a good few years ago now, our local PCT had a rather good joint initiative with the local hospital trust whereby A&E reception were to refer patients attending inappropriately during normal hours back to their GP surgery at the time of their A&E visit, by actually ringing up the GP practice and making an appointment there and then on the phone for the patient. Great – we had no access issues and this was a positive action at last. How many calls did we get? None. Not one – and we monitored it. I suspect A&E staff just couldn’t be bothered, or hadn’t been told.

Only a year and a half to the next general election.

Just beam me up now.


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