By Steve Carne, Aug 14 2018 10:52AM
Steve at it again
You know that feeling of "today I am NOT going anywhere near the NHS campaign".
Yeah that one.
So of course after 30mins of washing up last night's dishes while the coffee brews, a quick Duck Duck Go and a hop onto FB/Messenger and a whole flurry of NHS Bullshit sweeps me into a frenzy - yet again - and before I know it I'm trawling through the mire...
This is going to be brief. I want my life today.
Why cant we make the shit stick to this man? It's a mystery to me.
Is it that the public don't like personal attacks on an individual? What magical charm does he possess to woo all those around him? This is the quote that started it all off.
It kept appearing all over the place in relation to the muddle of media posts from 2017 that said things like "NHS BANNED 36 TREATMENTS". Shock tactics that journalists appear to need to use in order to keep their jobs no doubt as readership falls. So let's clarify that one while we're here. They didn't BAN 36 items that could be prescribed by GPs. They issued a statement to CCGs with a list of 36 items that could be purchased over the counter. It's explained here in PULSE MAGAZINE
Anyway... i stared at that quote.
Furious at first then irony popped in to say hello. And it made me chuckle. Yes "there is still waste and inefficiency that CAMPAIGNERS are determined to root out". It's you Mr Stevens and your bunch of crooks on the board of NHS England, Improvement, Digital, Innovation, Cream Tea, Uncle Tom Cobblybollox and all!
What better present could we ask for than to remove all the nasty corporate greed from our once "world's most efficient" public service NHS?
So the Shit-free Stevens factor. What is it that allows the obvious facts to be brushed underneat the rug that is soon to be pulled from under our feet? When Mr Stevens returned from USA to become the CEO of NHS England many eyebrows were raised - and UNITE the UNION raised a bit more with questions that don't appear to have been answered.
THE MEDIA MACHINE
Gulping coffee, my eyes were opened (again) to the enormity of the media machine we are up against as that quote cut'n'pasted neatly from the NHS England website - alongside another longtime fave Sir Bruce Keogh - was used and abused by the national papers and local rags up and down the country. Here's Bruce Bozo doing one of his hilairious routines about cutting A&Es by half in 2013.
What really caught my attention though was the sheer amount of press & media that had taken that first quote from the NHSE site and plastered it across all the nationals and local rags (so many more now being part of chains with less independence). CLICK HERE you'll see what I mean.
And that lazy cut'n'paste journalism is what we are up against and why we have to keep taking great joy in repetition. Cos that's what NHS England and the government do all the time, over and over. Repeat shit till it sticks. In people's minds. It's a bit like postering at Edinburgh Festival - As soon as we see their poster we stick ours over the top.
As far back 2015 we were trying to get people to take a deeper look into the mysterious Mr Stevens who had started out under Blair but found himself as President of Global Strategy for United Health (one of the biggest health insurance providers in the USA) for 9 years before Jeremy Hunt in the midst of stirring his marmalade had a wheeze to bring him back to head up the "Transformation" of the NHS...
It's not so much the man himself. There's no rescuing him as he sold his soul long ago. Apparently on his office he has a drawing one of his children created based on his other quote of wisdom " THINK LIKE A PATIENT, ACT LIKE A TAX-PAYER" - aimed at the middle classes no doubt to reinforce the subliminal AUSTERITY message that we have to tighten our belts... blah blah
Simon Stevens is worth exploring because his career tells you so much about the nature of the corporate beast that now sits on the planet gobbling what it can and shitting on everything else that it doesn't see any value in. Like ordinary people wanting a fair and decent chance of a fair and decent life.
Stevens is in with the top brass of global healthcare - a massive humungous industry for the players with their hands on it. Not surprising really after 9 years of Global Strategy... those in the know will tell you all about the World Economic Forum where he and many other corporate strategists plotted and wrangled how best to provide efficient (profitable) healthcare on a global scale. Here's the list of Steering Group members.
I realise also it's not worth spending huge amounts of time on. Just keep reminding ourselves that our local campaign work - tackling the obscurity and deviousness of local council planning, Clinical Commissioning Groups & Hospital Boards - what we face stems from the root of the problem. The corporate model that is now our NHS. The Quangos that are full of business consultants who have no other way of thinking except old economic arguments and the pure belief that PRIVATE BUSINESS knows best.
Here is his rather lengthy CV
And here is our 2015 page - huge thanks to those who joined us then. NHSDetectivesCase#1
For us it was an eyeopener. Time to open the files again and see what pops out. Have fun. The corporate clowns are in the ring. But they're #NOTfunny. Time to (As Mr Stevens would say) "root them out" of our NHS.