Time to say goodbye to the NHS

You’ve been an unmitigated disaster

‘Gimme your cake’
Photo by Ehimetalor Akhere Unuabona on Unsplash

Our Story

I write this as a person rather than one of my OTF articles.  I feel compelled to write it after our recent experience with the NHS.

Some of you know whereabouts I live but I am keeping this anonymous as possible as I believe the people involved are good people at heart and it is the system that should be blamed not the individual.

Two years ago a daughter had a lot of symptoms related to her nervous system, legs hurt and later she was struggling to grip plates. She was actually finally admitted to hospital and given strong painkillers. During this period an official complaint about the GP surgery was made and upheld over how she was spoken to on the phone (it would for some reason cut off too…).  After a month or so of being admitted, five months or so in all, most of the symptoms had gone away. She has never been fully back to normal though.  My big concern was that noticeable symptoms started within two weeks of the Pfizer jab, and were the most common injury from it.  Now we know what is wrong, both sets of problems are probably different manifestations of the same thing and it is unlikely the jab had anything to do with it – which is a relief.

A week ago the same daughter had leg pain and called 111.  Guessing it was considered a possible thrombosis so she was told to go to A&E.  Off she tootled and had a few tests.  Nothing was found and she went home after being told, any more pain then come back.  Next evening she was in a lot more pain and back we went to A&E, if for nothing more than stronger pain killers and just to make sure nothing had been missed.  While there, she had what looked like back spasms.  The medic was a lovely chap.  He was concerned but said his hands were tied. She had to go home.  In his opinion there was something very wrong but it wasn’t an emergency so she would have to go through the GP to get a referral.

She has a good night’s sleep, no more spasms in the morning, and the next day her grandparents have her over.  While there, her spasms are enormous, I come from work and I can see straight away that she isn’t safe in the car next to me.  I call 999 and learn that 999 is now only for purely life or death emergencies.  So it’s 111 and to be fair to them they say they will put her on the list for an ambulance and to call again if it gets worse.  Next one is worse and we are back on 111 – I am sure it went up the urgency list.  The next is even worse and the grandparents are straight onto 999 totally distraught and in five minutes an ambulance has arrived.

We spend the night again in A&E, again looked after by some lovely nurses.  More blood taken and intravenous painkillers.  Daughter is exhausted.  The spasms, although regular, subside a little (and I mean a little) and it isn’t considered life or death.  We have to leave A&E at 6am and get that GPs referral.  This evening’s doctor again reiterates that his hands are tied.

Next morning we phone the GP, no appointments available, even emergency ones.  I’ve had enough by now and just take her there.  She has a spasm in the surgery waiting room and the receptionist comes over worried.  It isn’t the worst and when she asks for name and date of birth she goes away and comes back saying, you haven’t an appointment with us, why are you here?  I said we have been A&E three nights in a row and she needs admitting and being seen by a specialist, hence we need to see a GP.  She goes off and comes back.  She says, I’ve just spoken with the office manager and you’re still not getting an appointment.  Basically we were told if the spasms happened again we would have to call ourselves an ambulance.  She booked a phone call for a day later – not an emergency.

Daughter’s mum came to GP surgery to take over from me and ended up taking her back to A&E at about midday.

That night in A&E was horrendous.  Twice the nurse pressed the emergency button and the room filled with medics.  I must have shown my distress as one of the nurses put her arm around me in comfort.  Before we had the room, she was in a chair in the middle of A&E having these what we now know were seizures, some of the staff didn’t bat an eyelid.  I know they were busy but it was the fact they didn’t even look that shocked me.  Again, they are all under pressure and I am pointedly not thinking ill of them as you have to have a very kind and giving attitude to take these careers.

One area of frustration was that despite saying they were sorting it, daughter didn’t get any pain relief from arrival until 10pm that night.  I think that it was them looking for her in the wrong place rather than not trying – one of those things, but not much fun for my daughter.

The people waiting in the room were shocked by what was happening and many came up to ask me if I was ok.  As they were awaiting emergency treatment themselves I found that quite humbling.

About 7am that morning I came across a lovely lucid lady, early eighties I would guess.  She had been ready to leave at 5pm the night before and was quite happy to go home. She was prevented by someone who insisted she was seen by the frailty department before she left.  Therefore, despite being ‘too frail to leave’, she wasn’t deemed too frail to be left in a chair all night in the middle of A&E without a blanket waiting for the department to open.

Another feature I noticed in the A&E department was the noise.  Obviously it is all hard surfaces for cleaning, but the noise was enough to make it difficult to hear softly spoken voices.  Also with the patient request buzzer and constant beeping from intravenous machines, it was at one point, when a prisoner was kicking off, almost unbearable.  Daughter and lady in the room next to me were trying to sleep while waiting for a bed elsewhere. Beds were there for treatment, so understand they are not designed for quiet, but also they are not conducive to recovery. Another issue of lack of capacity.

It was finally decided (I believe by the same doctor from the previous night) that she was now just needed to be seen regardless and she was moved to another emergency area.  After another seizure where a team rushed to her aid, she was seen by a specialist.  His diagnosis makes perfect sense, no long term damage, and hopefully she will now soon be back to her old self again.

After we were sorted a GP called once at about 5pm from the surgery, it wasn’t even booked as an emergency appointment, and she just missed it.  She phoned back and was told the Doctor would have called multiple times and she had missed her chance.  When she made the point that she had records showing he only phoned once, the receptionist then suddenly found a spare appointment for another call the next day – again shoddy service.  Next day the doctor rang at about 4pm, she was finally then prescribed the medications she needed.  One being a branded over the counter medicine that is cheaper to buy without a prescription, and generics being available!

A complaint about the GP practice has again been made.  I will take myself off their roll.  If I need a GP I’ll pay for one.  We have a walk-in centre in the next town for urgent stuff that is very good.

Now I give my views on the NHS from what has happened to us.


First note.  I believe the NHS can only cope with about half to two thirds of the population.  Health tourism is part of it, but not enough to explain away our current predicament.  However when capacity is below what is required for us, it is disgraceful that our politicians allow health tourism to continue, whether or not these people pay for it – which they do not.

Communist system

The Atlee government set up the NHS to be a beacon of how socialism would benefit the worker.  At the time the Labour Party was actually about looking after the working classes.  Just a shame they didn’t look for capitalists ways of solving their problems.

They showed off our new health service to the USSR, with whom they were worryingly cosy.  The Russians took one look at it and thought it was too left wing bonkers even for them.

As a note as to the necessity for the NHS; it is argued by many that at the time, the UK had the best health care provision in the world – a bit Heath-Robinson – but it worked. Therefore the NHS was a purely vanity project!

Communist Results

Despite being one of the biggest economies in the world and pouring in vast amounts, the NHS has gone consistently backwards from day one.  It is now barely functioning despite the country’s expertise and funding.

When anything is offered unlimited for free, there is never enough to go around.  This is what the Russians foresaw.

Funding Limits

The Laffer curve suggests there is a maximum amount a government can take off of its populace.  I’m not sure that the limit cannot be raised a little at least, but nevertheless there are limits.

If we are borrowing money then we are spending more than we can take in tax.

Therefore any further tax spending requires more borrowing which means more on interest payments in later years.  The only other option is to cut funding elsewhere. And despite the thinking, you cannot inflate your way out of the borrowing hole – that is a falsehood.


As politicians get the blame for all that goes wrong, and it isn’t accepted that mistakes happen, more and more time is spent on ACEs.  Arse Covering Exercises, often complex time consuming procedures and deep risk assessments to prove innocence as that is the burden, not proving guilt.

The vast amount of spending goes on covering backs and as they are legal requirements, spending is never cut there.  Also as it isn’t their money vast sums are handed out as pension payments too.

Therefore most cuts go on frontline services, both in numbers and payment of wages. A ten percent cut in funding would probably mean a fifty percent cut to frontline services, etc, etc.

This leads to

Overworked and Underpaid Staff

We cannot afford market rates for Doctors & Nurses so the good ones go abroad.  We then need to bring in staff from poorer countries, where we have created big industries training these people for the UK while deliberately not training enough in the UK.  I will repeat that as it sounds impossible to believe – we purposely do not train enough doctors in this country even if we were not suffering the brain drain we are.  Unbelievable

Also another area that was giving the game away was agency staff.  It was a way to get market rates for nurses at least.  It nearly made the hospitals unmanageable.  I don’t know what has changed, possible hospitals have been banned from using agency staff?

For those employed the pressure is enormous.  They are constantly exhausted and risk having careers ended if a wrong decision is made.  It is untenable long term and staff turnover, losing key experience is horrendous.

For GPs this is chronic.

This leads to

Lack of Capacity

Not having the resources for treatments nor staff means that healthcare provision cannot cope.  Covid, although a respite at the time, covered cracks which are now reopened demonstrating how bad our system is.

If hospitals act in conscience they are overwhelmed and nurses on wards cannot cope and mistakes are made and corners cut as they do the best they can.  But of course it is hopeless and the nurses that got it wrong, especially those trying to think for themselves are punished.

The only way to cope is to keep the number of people looked after limited.  They do this by forcing all but life and death situations to play appointment roulette with their GP, where the process goes at a snail’s pace.  Only the people that know how to play the system or are not cowed by authority and determined can get the piss poor service they pay a fortune in taxes for.

Another aspect is allocating blame.  In a well run system with spare capacity, errors would reduce anyway.  And accepting rare errors as errors; bad as that is for the families on the receiving end, would lead to far fewer deaths than from a badly run system without enough capacity. The witch hunts add to the problem!

Our NHS is like the USSR shops of the 1980s.  Nothing in the windows and queues for the few things there are.  Same mind set, same system, same result.


As stated above, under communist systems, as there is never enough capacity, rearguard survival measures are permanently in place.  Individual thought can bring down the whole, and more and more time is spent, proving you haven’t done that.

In a system where there is spare capacity, a person in agony and need of emergency care would never be ignored.  People would stop what they are doing and attend, or at least ensure proper attention was imminent.

So in a system where there isn’t enough capacity, you go down the path of losing your humanity.  For some, their conscience makes them escape the system, for others, they need the money and their soul is sold.  For me, the roof over my children’s head would come first.  I’d leave but only if I had another job to take its place.

Mid Staffs is nationwide – but hidden

Part of the drive to hobble hospital admissions is that without doing so each hospital would soon face its equivalent of the Mid Staffs scandal of nearly twenty years ago.

The hospitals may not be giving such universal bad care, but the Mid Staffs scandal is now hidden nationwide, it is happening in our homes, before would-be patients can be miscared for in wards.  And they are dying earlier than they should in their tens of thousands.

What it will take to change our health provision

In the end the politicians are too cowardly to make changes even though they know the NHS cannot be affordable.

The Privileged Establishment including Union Bosses all still cling to Socialist ideals and believe a bit more bureaucracy will sort it out.  They all have private health care and no doubt believe the NHS is just the same but in tatty buildings.

The only way the NHS will be replaced will be when the Doctors & Nurses finally give up trying to make this hopeless system work and also acknowledge they will never get life satisfaction from it either.  Hopefully then they can drive the destruction of this outdated communist edifice from the inside and some more sensible approaches considered.

I’m not suggesting here what the changes should be, but improvements won’t take place until the final death certificate under the NHS is signed, its own.

© Jerry Mandarin 2023