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The NHS as we know it was started in 1948. Hospitals, doctors, nurses, pharmacists, opticians and dentists all came together to provide free health care service. It was created to ensure that good healthcare would be available to anyone and everyone. It was not about who could afford it.
Throughout the years the NHS has headed numerous breakthroughs from Francis Crick and James D Watson, scientists from Cambridge university, discovering the structure of DNA which acted as the stepping stone in studying diseases caused by defective genes to the first successful bone marrow transplant on a child in 1979 and much later the world’s first liver kept alive outside the human body being successfully transplanted.
The NHS has done an enormous amount in terms of improving healthcare for all, and it continues to do so and grow accordingly. The number of professionally qualified clinical staff within the NHS has risen by 16.1 per cent since 2003. This rise includes an increase in doctors of 34.4 per cent; a rise in the number of nurses of 6.8 percent; and 17.4 per cent more qualified ambulance staff.
When the NHS was launched in 1948, it had a budget of £437 million (roughly £9 billion at today’s value). For 2012/13, it was around £108.9 billion.
Last Monday (13) paramedics, midwives, nurses and other NHS workers staged a four hour strike spurred on by the government’s refusal to give them a one percent pay rise. Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt explained why they couldn’t give a pay rise. “Everyone is going to get the 1% but what we have said is we can’t afford to give the 1% to the people who are already getting an increase of 3% through their increment.”
For the first time in history all unions joined the strike at the same time. In 2012 doctors went on a strike with regards to their pensions. In 1988 nurses went on strike over working hours and ambulance crews took industrial action between 1989 and 1990. But this is the first national walkout over pay for 32 years.
According to NHS staff, their pay has been cut by 12%-15% since 2010. They deem it unfair and disrespectful.
About 400,000 NHS staff and other trade unions joined in making it the biggest strike in healthcare’s history. For the first time in 133 years the Royal College of Midwives joined in.
There will be various forms of industrial action throughout the week with a national protest on Saturday organised by the TUC under the banner ‘Britain Needs A Pay Rise’.
Members of the society of Radiographers joined in on the existing strike from the NHS regarding the refusal of the 1% pay rise earlier yesterday 20/10. The strike started from 9:00 to 13:00pm, and follow a work-to-rule policy for the rest of the wee. Radiographers say it wont affect the healthcare of their patients.
The NHS staff as a whole feel they have got to the stage that they feel there is no alternative than to continue with the strike.
The facts speak for themselves. Although to date these strikes have not affected overall health care, the message is clear. What are your views on the strike? Should there be a 1% pay rise or not? Please share your views.
When Michael Schumacher hit his head in a tragic skiing accident in December 2013 he suffered serious head injuries which left him in a medically induced coma. This kind of unforeseen accident is exactly what leads us to start thinking about what medical treatment any one of us would prefer in situations such as these.
Without doubt we all think about ‘what would happen if?’ fleetingly at some point or another. We may even discuss it with friends and family, half joking that they need to remember how we want to be treated should our own medical decisions be something we can no longer take.
There is no time like the present to do something constructive about this. Finding out exactly what to do however can be a challenge. In this two part blog we will be discussing the best course of action to ensure your wishes are fulfilled, starting with establishing an Advance Directive to be kept with your medical file.
So what are Advance Directives?
Advance Directives are clear instructions left by an individual on what treatments they want in case they are in a life threatening condition.
If someone has a heart attack and his heart stops, if the person has left clear instructions that he does not want to be resuscitated (DNR) it has to be respected no matter what the situation is.
It also covers decisions about treatments. It gives detailed information from their doctors regarding various health topics and how to improve their quality of life should something happen to them. From serious illnesses and life threatening situations such as a stroke, lung failure, dementia through to accidents.
Who will speak for them?
An Advance Directive states clearly what the patient wants in terms of their medical condition or to whom they have given power of attorney, the person who can also make decisions for them.
It is important to have an Advance Directive document on file with your medical records which acts as an important healthcare tool.
In filling a form there are different sections which cover different topics. You will come across topics such as:
- Power of attorney for health care – Someone who is allowed to make decision on your behalf when you no longer can.
- Living trust – I want the life sustaining treatments or I do not want life-sustaining treatment.
- Wishes if you have a terminal condition – I do not want artificial nutrition and hydration.
- Wishes if you are in a persistent vegetative state – I want to be kept free of pain even if such care prolongs or shortens my life.
- Organ donations – I want to donate all my organs and tissues.
- Autopsy – I do not want an autopsy.
- And so on..
Filling out the actual form is quite straightforward. Doctors and nurses can work together with patients and their families to agree on a suitable plan that not only caters to the medical needs of the patient but also takes their values and preferences into account.
Once the form is complete you should take copies. One copy should be kept in your medical file but you can also keep a hard or soft copy for yourself or a trusted family member or spouse.
Next week we will go into further detail regarding setting up Advanced Directives. In the meantime, if you have any questions, please contact us.
Just a message to let you know that we intend to close our campaign on Seedrs tonight, 29th Sep. We would like to use this update as an opportunity to show our appreciation for everyone that has helped to make our campaign successful.
In past few days, we participated in few events and got very good response from the attendees. It was great to see that people quickly understood the problem we are solving and signed-up instantly. We are confident that with the money we have raised, we would continue to add innovative features and acquire more users. Thank you.
Whether you’ve invested, shown interest in our company or came along to our event, we’d like to say a massive thank you for all of your support. We couldn’t have done it without you.
If you’re still thinking about investing, make sure you hurry before time runs out.
As always, we’re happy to answer any questions.
Planned Departure Team.
Over the past few weeks, we worked hard to revamp our website. We are pleased with the results and would love to get your thoughts on the new design. Please, have a look at our new design and give us your feedback.
We have also introduced free membership with this launch. Many people wanted to try out our services and with this launch, we have made it easier for them to try Planned Departure.
Over the next few weeks, we will continue to tweak the design and content to ensure that message we want to convey is easy to understand and clear. If there is anything you would like to see on the website or if something is not clear – please let us know.
Remember, it takes only 30 seconds to create a free account. Create your free account today.
We would like to say a ‘BIG THANK YOU’
We have been keeping our heads down at Planned Departure from past few months and have made steady progress. Some of the things we have done so far are -
* We have grown the team size to 7.
* We have moved to our office at Vista Business Centre.
* We have been signing B2B partnership with wills and probate lawyers.
* We got covered in prestigious media outlets such as The Economic Times.
* Our crowdfunding campaign on Seedrs is launched and we are moving nicely towards our goal.
* We have secured investment from friends, family and professional investors.
* We are launching our new, sleek and revamped UI.
All this was possible because of the support and encouragement from our friends, family, professors from LBS and our investors.
We had the opportunity to say thanks and showcase our revamped UI.
For those that couldn’t make it, there will be another event soon so would be glad to see you then.