As the excitement of the European elections hits the UK (what do you mean you hadn’t noticed?) it got me thinking about my favourite 4-yearly event. A general election.
You see as soon as a general election comes round, I’m constantly stalled when I try to lobby the government to implement changes on something diabetes related. If I write to my PCT to request that they review some aspect of their diabetes care I’m fobbed off with the underlying message being “we’re waiting to find out who’s in power before we make any moves”.
Of course, we couldn’t live in a country where the healthcare system is so linked to politics that pretty much all progress grinds to a halt whenever elections take place. So that leaves the only other viable alternative – all development stops because politicians believe my diabetes is cured by a general election.
I’m also apparently cured by bank holidays, Christmas and someone’s secretary being on leave meaning that a letter can’t be typed for a fortnight but general elections seem to bring about the longest lasting cure. The most effective can last several months.
And the best news about this cure is that is doesn’t just work for diabetes. I have it on good authority that epilepsy, MS, asthma, cancer, cystic fibrosis, depression and a multitude of other conditions are implicitly eradicated by elections and holidays.
As I take my tongue out of my cheek and remove my cynical hat I issue a plea to all those involved in the setting of strategy for the NHS – please bear in mind that while the political manoeuvring is ongoing, there’s a fair few folks with chronic conditions trying to get on with their lives. Waiting to implement structured patient education or a process for approving insulin pump funding until after the politics is sorted really isn’t acceptable.