Box ticking, form filling and Whitehall bureaucracy have all been slashed in a Government shake-up of the NHS. Andrew Lansley MP, Secretary for Health, has said that some targets are to be scrapped and management costs cut almost by half as part of measures to replace waiting time targets with patient outcomes at the forefront of the NHS agenda.
Andrew Griffiths, MP for Burton, said:
“We are lucky in Burton to have such a good hospital right on our doorstep. But many NHS staff have said to me that they are burdened by unnecessary red tape and regulation. Scrapping NHS targets that have no clinical justification will let doctors and nurses focus on the patient care that is so important”.
The 48-hour target for patients to be seen by a GP has long been criticised by doctors for sometimes putting the most seriously-ill patients at risk as beds get blocked-up with people with less serious problems. The new guidance makes clear that hospitals will still be expected to see patients in 18 weeks but that they will not need to prove it to local managers, meaning less paper-work. The threshold for seeing A&E patients within four hours will also be lowered to 95% of patients from 98%.
Andrew went on to say:
“I know that Queen’s Hospital is dedicated to giving the very best care they can and I am glad that these common sense measures let the doctors and nurses focus on outcomes that matter instead of government form-filling. People should be treated according to their need for treatment, not an arbitrary time limit. For too long hospitals have been ranked by the blunt instrument of waiting times but now they can really concentrate on providing quality patient care”.