Monday, 21 June 2010

General Practice and the economy.


Well this weekend the mood has been sombre at the Café Michelle. Those working on the frontline know that this week there will be announcements from those on high which may affect we grunts on the ground and also our patients.

In general practice we see many patients who are depressed. Often the reason for their depression is debt and the inability to service it. Now we can treat the depression but we cannot pay off their debt.

Instead we advise them. We do not advise them to borrow more, for that way they will fall ultimately into the hands of loan sharks.

We instead suggest a trip to the Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) to get some help with their debts and angry creditors. Those who do, and many try several times as there are always long queues at local CABs.

Often they find their trip leads to a huge weight being lifted off their shoulders and a gradual recovery both from their financial burden and their depression. It does however take time and selfdiscipline.

Unfortunately as a nation our “betters” seem to have ignored basic principles something for which we will all pay, possibly for decades. However at the time it may have been the right decision.

There is no secret about the fact that affluent people tend to have better health than those with less. We suspect that over the next few years more will have less and that our workload for those suffering diseases whose aetiology is financial will increase. That is the nature of healthcare in an economic downturn and a recession.

Let us hope that those in the Westminster branch of CAB give our leaders good advice. We shall see later today how their patient, the British economy, will fare and as a result how we as doctors and our patients will fare too.

Praise be to the Party for Prudence for whom all of us in healthcare, both as workers and patients, are about to pay for big time.

We suspect here at ND Central that things are only going to get tougher. We shall see later what tomorrow will bring . . .

1 comment:

John said...

If a lot of them gave up their fags- which even those on benefit can afford, it would be a big help, but we mustn't mention that, must we?