Posted by: Witch Doctor | September 6, 2010

Death questions


Why is The Liverpool Care Pathway necessary?

Why is The Gold Standards Framework necessary?

Why is The Holistic Common Assessment necessary?

Why is the Preferred Priorities for Care necessary?

Why is the Route to Success Resources necessary?

Why is the Pepsi-Cola Aide Memoire and Distress Thermometer necessary?

They are all “Tools” apparently.

“Tools” to help with the care of the dying.

Who is there that would not agree that patients should have as pain free, and comfortable death as possible in the place of their own choosing in circumstances that are within the law?

Who is there that would not agree that doctors and nurses as professionals should be fully trained in the management of patients as their lives draw to a close?

Why is the government putting so much emphasis on the care of the dying?

Is it because professionals are no longer being trained in these matters as part of their professional training?

Is it because nurses and doctors are so lacking in mental agility that they cannot understand how to care for the dying without a crate of “Tools?”

That seems difficult to believe.

Is it possible there are not enough professionals (nurses and doctors) to care adequately for the dying?

This could be the problem in the hospital setting. Consider the problems in Staffordshire and the reports for Militant Medical Nurse’s blog (at the time of writing this blog has been taken down but no reason has been given.)

GPs once played a major role in the diagnosis of imminent death and orchestrated support mechanisms for the patient and family.

Is this no longer happening?

Of course, if polyclinics are rolled out everywhere and are inhabited by “Wheelie-Bin Doctors” who prefer clients to patients then this could be a major factor in restructuring the care of patients at home during their last days.

Wheelie-Bin Doctors would not know the patient or the family and there would be no continuity of care to ensure everything was being done.

The medical and nursing care of the dying at home would then need to be taken over by some authority either within the NHS, the private sector or a charity.

The role of the GP who knew the family and cared for his/her dying patients at home would be defunct.

Is that why the Liverpool Care Pathway is necessary?

Or is it because of the new contract that was foisted upon GPs a few years ago by the visionary health secretary Alan Milburn?

The contract that gave them an incentive not to be responsible for the care of their patients 24 hours a day 365 days of the year?

The Witch Doctor has never believed Alan Milburn was such a duffer that he couldn’t work out the consequences of this Change.

She thinks the reason for this Change was not driven by concern over GPs sleep patterns.

The Witch doctor is going on and on about this until she can make some sense out of the need for the LCP and why caring for the dying is now taking on such a high profile.

Why now?

After all, death and dying have been with us since the beginning of time.


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  1. […] DEATH QUESTIONS […]

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