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April 26, 2007


Jane Henry

It's hard to know if things would be/have been better under Cameron. He's so keen to jump into the touchy feely middle ground embraced by TB, I think not.

I DO know as I have a good friend who is a health visitor that the provision for new mums is getting worse and worse. She regularly tells me that she cannot do the necessary follow ups due to short staffing (there is a recruitment freeze going on in our area)/too much bureaucracy. She says that whereas in the past she would have known her new mums by name, now she can barely remember whether she's seen them before. As a committed and highly skilled professional this troubles her deeply, particularly as she is often involved in child protection issues. Her view is that the families that need the help most are simply not getting it.

On a personal note, I think my kids are not getting the same attention they were. My last one didn't have a proper pre school visit from her health visitor as her sisters did. I had to fill in a form instead. Luckily I have no concerns about her, but if I had where would I have gone. I was also pretty disconcerted to go to her recent check with the asthma nurse (usually a yearly event) only to be told that I don't need to bother next year if I'm not worried about her. Granted she is very well on the whole now, but she has scared us in the past, and her most recent asthma attack was a throwback to the bad old days when she did get very ill, so... funnily enough I won't be taking them up on that one.

I am lucky as my children are healthy, but if they had real problems I would be worried.

And the husband reports on the dental side of things that everyone is so busy form filling and ticking the right boxes to show they've done the right thing, that they forget to actually look at the patient. He says he's seen paperwork that looks fantastic and then looked in the patient's mouth and the work done was shocking...

Sorry that was a bit of a rant.

I have a feeling the boy David won't make it any better.

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