Petition from HMG over petition for Forces Hospitals;Reply

#1
Just recieved this in my E-Mail;


The Government is committed to providing excellent medical care for the members of our armed forces. "Military hospitals" are no longer the best way to provide that care.

The numbers of our Servicemen and women who require hospital treatment are relatively small. On a typical day, there are barely enough military in-patients in the UK to fill two wards of a major NHS hospital, irrespective of where they live or work, or of the severity or type of illness or injury. To bring together all the military patients in that way would be medically wrong. It would also mean that many of these patients and their families would have to travel long distances unnecessarily, when they can receive the appropriate care closer to home.

We do, however, bring together in one place the majority of our military patients who are seriously injured overseas. Selly Oak NHS Hospital in Birmingham is now the primary reception hospital for military patients evacuated back to the UK from overseas, including casualties from Iraq and Afghanistan. That is because the hospital is nationally at the leading edge in the medical care of the complex and multiple injuries that our battle casualties typically sustain, and is well located to receive casualties flown in from overseas. Selly Oak provides a level and capacity of clinical care that our military hospitals simply could not.

As the Chief of the General Staff, General Sir Richard Dannatt, said in a BBC interview in March 2007:

"There is nowhere better in the country, nowhere more expert at polytrauma medicine, than that hospital in Selly Oak. That's why our people are there."

And we do fully accept the need for Service patients to continue to feel part of the military family. We have therefore created a Military Managed Ward within the main trauma and orthopaedic ward at Selly Oak. MOD and NHS authorities have altered the layout of the ward to produce a separate area for military patients whose condition allows them to be nursed together. A combined military and civilian team cares for these patients. The team includes military nursing managers and a military ward-master, with military nursing staff on duty on every shift.

Our operational casualties can also be treated in the other specialist units offered by NHS hospitals in Birmingham. Wherever practicable, military patients are allocated to one of the military consultants who work at Birmingham. By far the largest proportion of specialist care, however, is provided by NHS staff. This reflects the range of knowledge, skills and resources the NHS can and does offer our patients. Our current facilities at Selly Oak will become part of the Birmingham New Hospitals Project that is planned to start admitting patients to the finest healthcare facilities in Europe by 2010.

When our serious casualties are sufficiently recovered, many go on to the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre at Headley Court in Surrey, a world-class centre dedicated to military patients. Less serious cases may go on to one of MOD's 15 Regional Rehabilitation Units in the UK and Germany. These military units provide accessible, regionally-based assessment and treatment, including physiotherapy and group rehabilitation facilities. Hence once the crucial hospital phase is over, and patients have received the most appropriate clinical care, we provide rehabilitation for military patients in a wholly military environment.

The majority of the patients in the military hospitals that were phased out from the mid 1990s were actually civilians. Even so, military hospitals increasingly failed to offer the range and volume of cases that our military doctors, nurses and allied health professionals need, to remain at the leading edge of their professions. That is why, in addition to the Royal Centre for Defence Medicine in Birmingham, we created elsewhere in the UK, five MOD Hospital Units (MDHUs), all located within major NHS Trust hospitals, to provide experience and training for our military medical personnel. The NHS hospitals that host the MDHUs are also close to military population centres, and so can offer more "local" secondary care facilities for military patients living or working in the region.

The skills our medical staff can now gain and maintain in major NHS trauma hospitals are used in the arduous conditions of the front line and in our field hospitals, to save the lives of injured troops who would have died in similar circumstances only a decade ago.

The Defence Medical Services in the UK thus now work not in military hospitals, but in close partnership with the NHS, to deliver the treatment that our Servicemen and women deserve. Our medical personnel who deploy overseas are a mixture of Regulars and Reservists - with many of the latter themselves being NHS staff. And of course, NHS staff can provide the continuity of care when either Regular or Reserve personnel deploy from NHS facilities.

In summary, a partnership with the NHS is the best way of ensuring that Service patients continue to get the high standards of medical treatment they deserve. This partnership also plays an essential role in training and maintaining the competence of DMS uniformed staff, so that they can fulfil their primary operational role overseas. It is a partnership in which both the Defence Medical Services and the National Health Service are constantly striving to achieve the best care for our sick and injured personnel.



http://www.pm.gov.uk/output/Page12961.asp

Have'nt read it fully yet but it sound's like typical gov spin!
Regards,
Spike
 
#2
The numbers of our Servicemen and women who require hospital treatment are .
Id be interested as to what they class as relatively small.
 
#3
Got the same.
Bullshit meter immediately registered a positive reading. Mealy mouthed platitudes amounting to
"We are already doing the best....committed...partnership.... way forward...accessible...world class(!)"

"The skills our medical staff can now gain and maintain in major NHS trauma hospitals are used in the arduous conditions of the front line and in our field hospitals, to save the lives of injured troops who would have died in similar circumstances only a decade ago."


This also assumes that they get lifted out of the minefield, or whatever, in the first fcuking place.

Cunts. Top to bottom.
 
#5
Given the shortage of military medics across the specialisations we'd be screwed if we were in military hospitals - there would be no one to man the hospital. And why are we short of medics - Options for Change methinks!
 
#6
On the face of it, their response reads rather well. I doubt that anyone could dispute the statement:
The majority of the patients in the military hospitals that were phased out from the mid 1990s were actually civilians.
Could well be, I certainly recall my ex being an in-patient at both CMH in Aldershot and RAF Wegberg in the early/mid `70s, the one time I got admitted I stayed in the MRS!

The argument about the level of medical expertise being higher in the NHS than in the military is also possibly difficult to dispute.

Now, could it be that the petition itself was wrongly worded! What I feel is actually required, having read I think all of the threads on the subject, is not so much a separate "hospital" - defined as a complete entity - but a separate department/wing that is realised as "independant" within a larger complex, for the most part self-contained, and with both restricted and controllable access. Thus:

a. If some headscarfed and veiled tussies want to kick up a fuss about anything - they do it outside in the fresh air, not on the ward. Should they try to gain access, the lads on the door would be more than willing to redirect them to Out-Patients. :)

b. There would be no risk of a severely wounded member of the military coming to next to a noisy geriatric suffering from both dementia and incontinence.

c. Incidents such as overflowing colostomy bags, and other such reported examples of a lackadaisical level of nursing care, are highly likely to be somewhat rarer than rocking-horse shite. (It`s the discipline what does it, they don`t have much of it in them other buildings!)

d. The soldiers would be amongst themselves, comrades-at-arms with 100 % understanding and empathy for each others plight, not blended in with a bunch of civilians, of whom some might have a difficult to conceal animosity towards the military.

If Selly Oak as the source of medical expertise must be, then so be it. But from the horror stories that I have read about Selly Oak, the present situation is far from ideal.

What say that a piece of land (not been there, but I would guess there is a fair bit of it with just grass and trees on it) for a suitable building (if they don`t have one to hand over) is allocated for exclusive military use at Selly Oak and the construction task is handed to a Field Squadron RE - as a hands-on trade training exercise? Anyone doubt that it could be up and running within a couple of months?
 
#8
I got the same sort of thing in a reply to a letter I sent the defence sec.

"The Government is committed to providing excellent medical care for the members of our armed forces. "Military hospitals" are no longer the best way to provide that care.

The numbers of our Servicemen and women who require hospital treatment are relatively small. On a typical day, there are barely enough military in-patients in the UK to fill two wards of a major NHS hospital, irrespective of where they live or work, or of the severity or type of illness or injury. To bring together all the military patients in that way would be medically wrong. It would also mean that many of these patients and their families would have to travel long distances unnecessarily, when they can receive the appropriate care closer to home"

That bit was exactly the same........


I am discussed that they think we are so stupid as to believe this crap.... this government is trying to take us as total idiots that they can walk over, same with the EU constitution, not giving us a referendum.... saying that parliment will have the last say.... well that makes me totally sick as they will only follow the party line........ I don't know where this and past governments get off with thinking they can treat us like this..... makes me sick

Duncan
 
#9
Mr_Jones said:
Separate military block at Selly Oak close to all the expert docs plus 5 or 6 Headley Courts round the country with a PTSD place. And lots more choppers.
Almost spot on, Mr Jones. I was vociferous on the Econsultation and elsewhere on here with regard to precisely such concepts with, however, one exception.

The Defence Medical Services already has 15 UK Departments of Community Psychiatry and overseas units in Cyprus and BFG, stocked to the gills with specialist staff trained to deal with PTSD. I know - I work in one.

The only snag is most potential punters would rather keep quiet about their post-trauma difficulties whilst still serving, presumably for fear of career ending/impeding action, loss of face, embarrassment - whatever.

Combat Stress are a good outfit - they should be as most of their key players are ex-military - but we would far rather people sought help while they were serving and gave us half a chance of sorting them out AND retaining them, than have people keep a lid on it while they make a beeline for civvy street, because once there a vocal minority atttract red-top headlines by claiming that the military did nothing for them.
 
#10
khakicrab wrote:

The Defence Medical Services already has 15 UK Departments of Community Psychiatry and overseas units in Cyprus and BFG, stocked to the gills with specialist staff trained to deal with PTSD. I know - I work in one.

The only snag is most potential punters would rather keep quiet about their post-trauma difficulties whilst still serving, presumably for fear of career ending/impeding action, loss of face, embarrassment - whatever.
yeah, that makes sense actually.
 

cpunk

LE
Moderator
#11
spike7451 said:
The majority of the patients in the military hospitals that were phased out from the mid 1990s were actually civilians. Even so, military hospitals increasingly failed to offer the range and volume of cases that our military doctors, nurses and allied health professionals need, to remain at the leading edge of their professions. That is why, in addition to the Royal Centre for Defence Medicine in Birmingham, we created elsewhere in the UK, five MOD Hospital Units (MDHUs), all located within major NHS Trust hospitals, to provide experience and training for our military medical personnel. The NHS hospitals that host the MDHUs are also close to military population centres, and so can offer more "local" secondary care facilities for military patients living or working in the region.
Hmmm. Well the majority of patients in US Veterans' Administration hospitals are civilians: they've been discharged from the military but their government still recognises a particular duty of care.

And of course, the closure of the military hospitals was based on the same monstrously over-optimistic planning assumptions that saw us cutting back the infantry below critical mass and scaling ourselves for one medium scale enduring operation. In other words, wishful thinking. So I call bullsh1t on this one.
 
#12
Mr_Jones said:
khakicrab wrote:

The Defence Medical Services already has 15 UK Departments of Community Psychiatry and overseas units in Cyprus and BFG, stocked to the gills with specialist staff trained to deal with PTSD. I know - I work in one.

The only snag is most potential punters would rather keep quiet about their post-trauma difficulties whilst still serving, presumably for fear of career ending/impeding action, loss of face, embarrassment - whatever.
yeah, that makes sense actually.
makes sense to me too, but why then has psychiatric care only been extended to those reserve forces mobilised from 2003 onwards, and not those with conditions related to earlier operations?
 
#13
hackle wrote:

makes sense to me too, but why then has psychiatric care only been extended to those reserve forces mobilised from 2003 onwards, and not those with conditions related to earlier operations?
The devil is in the detail as always. That's what is so good about this forum.

edit: also from the comments above seems like the PTSD issue needs to be (more?) pro-active.
 
#14
hackle said:
makes sense to me too, but why then has psychiatric care only been extended to those reserve forces mobilised from 2003 onwards, and not those with conditions related to earlier operations?
Hackle, check out the Medical Assessment Programme at St Thomas' Hosp (Google it).

Run by Ian Palmer - retired RAMC colonel.

The reservists programme you're referring to is TELIC 1 onwards. If we opened our doors to all veterans (personally, I'd love to, but...) we'd need 50 DCMHs and not 15!!
 
#15
MrsRaven said:
Given the shortage of military medics across the specialisations we'd be screwed if we were in military hospitals - there would be no one to man the hospital. And why are we short of medics - Options for Change methinks!
Options for Change, tour after tour, low pay, little or no understanding from Civilian colleagues in MDHUs, MDHUs, disparity in pay in relation to our NHS colleagues........I'll stop there as it urines me off..... I now get more pay in the NHS being a lowly band 6 BMS than I did as a WO2 with 22 years under my belt :roll: .......and I hear they have scrapped the review into the disparity of the pay as well! :roll:
 
#16
KhakiCrab said:
hackle said:
makes sense to me too, but why then has psychiatric care only been extended to those reserve forces mobilised from 2003 onwards, and not those with conditions related to earlier operations?
Hackle, check out the Medical Assessment Programme at St Thomas' Hosp (Google it).

Run by Ian Palmer - retired RAMC colonel.

The reservists programme you're referring to is TELIC 1 onwards. If we opened our doors to all veterans (personally, I'd love to, but...) we'd need 50 DCMHs and not 15!!
But I was responding to your excellent point that many are reluctant to seek help for psychiatric disorders while they are still serving - so it made sense to me to extend the availability of medical care further back than TELIC 1 - and that programme is for mobilised reservists. (See below - 'RHMP').

Well reminded ref the Medical Assessment Programme at St Thomas' Hospital, many thanks. This is taken from the "Mental Health Issues" section of the British Armed Forces Federation's written evidence to the House of Commons Defence Committee's Inquiry on Medical Care for the Armed Forces:

BAFF said:
21. We welcomed the MOD announcement on 11 June, 2007 to extend the Medical Assessment Programme (MAP) to allow more former Service personnel to seek “professional advice” on mental illnesses which they feel are linked to their time in the Armed Forces. Apparently the “advice” will, however, only comprise screening. So as not to deter eligible individuals from seeking screening under the MAP, we would welcome an assurance that the results may not be used in relation to any pension or compensation issue without the consent of the patient.

22. We are also aware – as many NHS practitioners clearly are not – of the tri-Service Reserves Mental Health Programme (RHMP) established at Chilwell. This facility needs to be publicised much more effectively.

23. Eligibility under the RHMP is currently restricted to those reservists who have been demobilised from an operational theatre since January 2003. Eligibility under the MAP is restricted to those veterans who have served since 1982. Both of these date restrictions are arbitrary and unjustifiable, and we would urge the MOD to remove them...
 
#17
A_Brace_of_Buns said:
b. There would be no risk of a severely wounded member of the military coming to next to a noisy geriatric suffering from both dementia and incontinence.

I take it you have never seen some of the senior consultants or even some of the old and bold QAs..... They firmly fall into that category....
 
#18
PE4rocks said:
"The skills our medical staff can now gain and maintain in major NHS trauma hospitals are used in the arduous conditions of the front line and in our field hospitals, to save the lives of injured troops who would have died in similar circumstances only a decade ago."

Cunts. Top to bottom.
A decade ago these sort of wounds were rare as we weren't fighting in two other coutnries half way around the world.
Bosnia was bad does it really compare to the level of action being seen in Helmand?
 
#19
Am I the only one who thinks that these petitions to Downing St are a waste of time and a clever ploy to funnel objections into a conduit that can be [and are] refuted by an eventual answer from some government spin wordsmith that does not deal with the problems voiced? Far better to put ones energy into action [like the Headly Court campaign] by a combination of supporting BAFF/bugging your MP's & Councillors/writing to the press/max publicity and puttting in a physical presence when appropriate.
Join BAFF.........you know it makes sense
 
#20
that reply was the biggest load of crap i have ever read typical of this goverment to spin that
 

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