At this time of year, it would seem to be the done thing for those who consider themselves to be experts in their fields to produce a list of ‘predictions’ for the coming coming year. If you’ve already lapped up the former Northern Rock CEO’s predictions for global credit conditions, and you just want more, more, more – we present:
1. Alan Johnson to be found alive, and living in the wild with a troop of Barbary Macaques. For a while, we thought that no one had been selected to replace our dear Patsy Fuckwitt and for all intents and purposes, that would still appear to be the case. However, whilst gazing into the bottom of my mug this morning, the tealeaves were giving me a distinct ‘Postman Pat‘ vibe, and I feel that 2008 will be the year Alan says/does something.
2. The MTAS junior doctor job application system to be replaced by a new Saturday evening BBC one reality show (hosted by Graham Norton) entitled “Any Job Will Do“. 30,000 medical graduates from around the world will be whittled down do one, with the lucky winner given a job working for connecting for health as PA to Dr Simon ‘Judas-Badger’ Eccles.
3. The involvement of private companies in Primary Care, through APMS contracts, will be proven to be the disaster for patients, the taxpayer and healthcare workers that we all knew it would be. Did they listen? Like fuck they did! More specifically, the first and most obvious example will be the folly of awarding of the contracts to run two practices in Derbyshire to a private company instead of the doctors who were actually working there and making a difference.
4. The Conservatives to actually come out with an actual health policy. As improbable as it may sound, it will happen and I’m prepared to stick my neck out on this one. The current policy, of letting the shining beacon of fuckwittery that is New Labour’s health policy illuminate itself for all to see, may be politically astute but there will come a time in 2008 when Dave will have to put his nuts on the table. Dr Rant knows exactly where in the shed his hammer is, so it better be good!
5. The third consecutive 0% annual increase in GP practice incomes. Practice staff like nurses and receptionists won’t be getting a 0% increase from their GP employer however, so that means another take home pay cut for GPs. But, when one considers that we play golf all day and take home a quarter of a million quid, it doesn’t matter really.
6. Fight! Fight! Fight! Fight! There will be blood in the corridors of Whitehall because Gordon’s picked on the wrong group of 40,000 professionals this time, and GPs aren’t going to roll over and play dead. We will not do more work for less money, and neither will we chase political objectives instead of doing clinical work that has been proven to actually make people healthier. Opening on a Saturday morning may win Clunking Clunker a few votes, but it won’t really make anyone healthier, and if opening on a Saturday morning comes instead of during the week, those who need access will lose out to those who want access. The resistance is getting organised, and the GPC are standing firm. This is one battle Gordo and the DoH admindroids aren’t going to win. Of course, that nice man Dave might find it all interesting, assuming his nuts haven’t been flattened by a GP with a hammer……..