After a particularly hard night of resistance work at the infamous Café Michelle some of the team decided to check the NHS Choices website for a laugh. You know how it is when you are waiting for the liver to do its job and the Sunday morning bacon buttie to get digested. We have visited it before and commented on its value for money.
Well we started by putting in our postcode and looking at our empire. We looked at how many doctors there were at each surgery site and none of the figures were correct for the same number of doctors are present at each site and the same sex ratio applied but not on the NHS Choices website that gave you several Party approved “NHS Choices” none of which actually applied.
What amazed us more was that the distances from the postcode we put into NHS Choices to many local neighbouring surgeries were at complete odds with our regular commutes and the figures on our milometer. Our most rural surgery was closer in distance to our main surgery than another surgery site in the same small rural conurbation according to NHS Choices. Clearly something strange is distorting the space-time continuum in Northershire and we will need either Doctor Who or Mr Spock to explain how a journey of many miles over high moors has been reduced to a few tenths of a mile.
This could be interesting as neither Dr Who or Mr Spock would be qualified to work in NHS IT but we are sure a sonic screwdriver or a translator device would help them “crack” this NHS Choices conundrum.
If you click on the map it shows the correct locations of the surgeries and shows the same distances but if you look at the scale bar on the map then the distances quoted by NHS Choices are clearly wrong. Can't be Google's fault can it?
We did this for a few other locations we knew well and the same errors were there too for distances quoted. Indeed 2 surgeries at approximately the same true (map) distance were quoted as being 0.3 and 0.9 miles from the postcode entered.
One of the reasons we did this was to see if any comments had been posted since we last visited and the website showed that we had scored one hit. Salivating at the thought that someone might actually like us enough to post a comment on the NHS Choices website which surely would reward us with untold riches due to a surge in patients wishing to register we clicked the link and were invited to be the first to post a comment.
Strange we thought could there be a programming error so we used our provisional number of comments =number quoted minus 1 formula and tried one of our neighbouring surgeries which confirmed the formula worked for they had 2 comments but only one was visible.
Being on an Einsteinian mathematical roll we went to the local dross practice which was sporting a massive 0 out of 2 comments recommending the practice so we thought we would be in for a laugh and see maybe one comment but there were in fact 3 one in favour two against.
There was lots of other similar information available like the fact that we opened at weekends which was news to us as was the fact that we offered extended hours at times which we did not. We found this by clicking our surgery name.
Extending our search we found degrees that we have never been awarded but it is good to know that we have doctorates in subjects we have never studied while lacking even a basic medical degree.
All in all an interesting website if you have nothing else to do other than work off a hang over and fancy a laugh. Reminds us of reading the Sunday Sport to get real news.
Go on try it for your own and local surgeries. If it is as accurate as it is for Northernshire surgeries and places where we trained then you will be “recommending” it to your friends. More likely you will ignore it as most people do when choosing a doctor and go on personal recommendation.
Praise be to the Party for spending millions on crap websites to provide factually incorrect information. Once again the NHS is leading the world backwards in provision of IT services for patients.
And spending millions in doing so which could be better spent on treating real patients rather than providing useless but expensive websites.
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Northern Doc was once a blog originally written by a group of GPs in Northernshire and expressed their experiences and frustrations of working in today's NHS. The pieces were compiled at social meetings after work and published anonymously in a once free society. Following the Government's Medical Council clamp down on freedom of thought, speech and expression by doctors and our belief that the views of a few doctors DO NOT represent the views of the profession as a whole their views will now be written by and published by a journalist who has previously contributed to the blog by virtue of social ties. Any inference that the word Doc means a doctor is now purely coincidental. This is as of the 22 April 2013.