So, how do you save money and improve patient care in the NHS? If you believe this government or the previous one, you would say that you merge smaller, inefficient hospitals to give you bigger, better hospitals.
More specialised, more efficient, better quality, better patient outcomes. No contest.
The mergers continue, all the time. The experts know best.
Ranged against this expert opinion are a motley crew of local patients, trades unionists, a rabble of political protesters, a few maverick Doctors and me. What do we know?
Well, get out an ice pack and put it on your head, because we’ve got to do some work if we are to understand what is going on.
I’m going to be reviewing some useful academic studies into just how efficient these widespread mergers have been.
Up till now, mergers if not planned, have been at least considered. From now on, mergers will occur randomly as a result of Trusts going ‘bust’. I’ll be taking a look at that too.
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