The National Health Lottery

As always these days, the world of healthcare is changing rapidly, and the discussions around the NHS are getting louder and more frequent. This is such an important issue for us all, I felt I needed to add some more, to follow on from my previous post.

No this is not about any fundraising scheme for our rapidly sinking ‘health service.’ It is about the LUCK that we need these days if we have anything wrong with us. Since the arrival of covid our Government has ignored every other condition to ” save the NHS.” Has that tactic been successful? Far from it unfortunately! In less than two years, we have transformed it from a ‘coping’ service to a broken one. How on earth have we let this happen?

People queuing for their vaccination

Of course, all waiting lists are increasing, as our quality of life decreases the longer this continues. Millions will die prematurely due to delayed diagnosis, many more will suffer whilst waiting for relatively routine surgeries. This is not for the want of hard work by the incredible staff in the NHS. However working hard alone is no guarantee of success. Quite frankly this is a national disaster happening in front of our eyes. How is this ” building back better?” It’s great to see our economy getting stronger and society open up more. But without efficient healthcare we are going backwards as a nation.

I have seen many estimates for how long it will take to clear the current waiting lists. My personal opinion is up to ten years, not the two or three quoted. We’re already starting our annual talk about the catastrophes of winter waiting round the corner. More covid, flu pandemic, and regular challenges will keep us occupied until March or April. Another six months of waiting and stagnating. So we can all see what the problems are, but how should we deal with them?

Boris Johnson and Sajid Javid

Unfortunately for us all, our hapless politicians have our healthcare future in their hands. Having already shown us how incapable they are at getting even basic decisions right, I’m not holding my breath! But who has the chutzpah to take on a job like that? This is not a simple repair, it’s a complete re-build. Root and branch to remove the poor working practices left to fester over many years of lethargy. Is there anybody that has individual responsibility for anything in our healthcare. Minister of health, head of NHS both employees of the Government.

Whilst primary and secondary care limp on, the inequalities and postcode lottery of care become glaringly obvious. I am getting bombarded by personal stories from people unable to access the care they need in the time they need it. Appointments taking ages, then more delays for scan results to be written. In most cases the patients being left to chase things every step of the way! How does early diagnosis work if there are delays from the start?

I have my fingers crossed daily that none of my family or friends require medical attention in this day and age. Particularly something serious. It is becoming almost a fight with the service for the care you require. Wouldn’t it be great if when you got sick you received the care you required without excuses and constant challenges. Those days weren’t that long ago either!

Patient in bed whilst 2 healthcare professionals look at his medical notes.

This week I heard an interview with a healthcare professional. It was interesting as they thought the answer to this problem was moving to a system of ‘patient centred care.’ I nearly fell out of my chair! Does that mean we haven’t been putting the patient first for all these years? Have we had an #NHS run in the way that suits it, and the patient must fit in? If you think about it, that is really what is happening.

Those that dare to question our incredible institution from inside or out get castigated. Staff have their careers ruined and much innovation is stopped at the first hurdle. Excuses about risk and finance initially, then just pushed around in the eternal internal red tape. Is this now a service that we should be proud of? More importantly continue to just pump millions into on demand?

We all have reason to be grateful for the incredible things that the NHS staff have done for us over many years. We cannot argue about the herculean efforts that are continuing. But running an efficient service that is effective for us all, is not solely about working hard. As we can see by what is happening now. Where we are currently, is not sustainable.

Whilst all involved continue to look inwards, the rest of the world is progressing. With ideas fit for the way of life we have now. Closer to home there are great models coming out of Holland and Sweden, just as a place to start. No, it’s not an easy task after years of ‘soft touch’ from the Government. But we must grasp the nettle and quickly.

What we all want is a fair system that gives us hope, and unfortunately we are as far away from that as we can be. As always these are my personal opinions based on my experiences. Please feel free to share your own below.


  1. Being a fully paid up member of the cancer community since 2017 riding the carousel of conflicting cancer treatments within the NHS and the disparities in the treatments ‘offered’ on the so called NHS ever since. Firstly, just the very term said all too often by professionals who work and practice within both the private sector and the NHS ‘system’ I became dependant on the system to cure me of two genetic cancers that I was born with, when they manifested in 2017, along with quite a few other genetic familial diseases. When treatments for cancers which can be a cure for some and or other maintenance medications are withheld, despite being used in the private health sector, or other regions of the UK, is there any wonder the patient becomes very impatient with professionals who express this openly, but do nothing to stop this practice either? This outright neglect has personally caused the deterioration of my mental health and had these said treatments been offered to me through the NHS or free as some see it, then the cost to keep me from committing suicide every day due to the mental torture has surpassed the cost of the medication used to treat brca2 and prevent a reoccurrence.

    Thank you Chris, without your voice I would have none, you words inspire me to be frank and honest about my own personal expertise of how the NHS needed protecting way before COVID-19 and every day a piece of me dies to know that so many others like me are also losing the will to live because of the direct refusal of care being offered to treat cancers and genetic diseases alike.

    Big love Di xxxx ❤️

  2. Hi Di,

    I’m so sorry that it has taken the common bond of cancer for us to know each other. Thank you so much for your kind words and am so sorry to hear your continuing issues with the service that is there to help as all as best it can. Every single day of the week I am hearing horrific stories like this and can see no sign of anything improving in the next few years.

    My dye is cast but I fight for my children and grandchildren’s generations, where we will leave them with such difficult challenges, particularly their health. We have sat back whilst generations of of politicians and NHS leaders sat on their hands as the service worsened in front of their eyes.

    As be both know, the world of cancer is a very corrupt one, from pharmaceutical to even at some stage corporate charities. Everyone wanting their slice of the pie. It is wrong that the patient is not put at the centre of care. Of course some tough decisions will have to be made but all we are asking is that the system is fair to all.

    Di, you shouldn’t be feeling like this. I would be happy to have a chat at some stage or can signpost you to someone who may be able to help. You are not alone and this is why I continue with this site.

    Big love, Chris XXX

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