Health Minister Andrew Lansley has confirmed that the latest NHS reforms will require patients seeking treatment to be seen by a panel of three healthcare professionals, ‘sitting behind a desk with their hands on a buzzer with a light-up x attached’.
“Patients want choice, and also a second opinion’ said Mr Lansley. ‘This gives them both, provided that they accept our definition of ‘private consultation’ to include the viewing audience of ITV2.’
Under new guidelines each commissioning team will have at least one GP who takes pity on every patient, ‘especially if they’ve come on a long journey to get to the surgery’, one who buzzes all but the most obviously sick, and one who vacillates between the other two.
A trial in Hull saw profits from selling TV rights ploughed straight back into front line services, with the complete overhaul of at least two vending machines in A & E funded within days. Once each NHS trust has a studio surgery, stage two will see the National Centre for Clinical Excellence scrapped in favour of a premium rate phone line giving the public the chance to vote for who gets the most expensive treatments. ‘We’re really proud of that one’ continued Mr Lansley. ‘Self funding care provision based on democratic choice! In your face, Miliband.’
One early trialist of the new approach seemed impressed. ‘The docs listened to my symptoms, then kept asking if anyone else in my family had more interesting illnesses’ he said. ‘Luckily for me my nan had just died and I started crying – I got signed off work for two weeks, and a tissue from the cameraman. I bloody love the NHS.’