The British Medical Association (BMA) has criticised the Health Secretary’s truncated care as an ‘interminable bore’, which becomes no more than a longwinded chat, punctuated with small-talk and embarrassing rashes. Doctors say that ten minutes is far too long to be in the company of whiny and wheezy members of the public, who rarely ‘look their best’ and often smell of TCP.
A BMA spokesman explained: ‘Being a GP is like speed dating; you know in the first few seconds if you’re compatible and if the patient will give you a good look at their genitals. I just want to get down and dirty, rather than waste time on meaningless details – like what’s their name or their medical history…or if they’re in cardiac arrest’.
The Government has released guidance on how to shorten complex consultations for 60 patients a day, into a triage involving a bottle of multi-vitamins, a rectal thermometer and directions to the nearest BUPA hospital. NHS England has even suggested combining consultations, with all patient members of a group given the medication of the one with the ‘cheapest’ illness.
Jeremy Hunt insisted that GP efficiency improves with less time, in the same way seven years at medical school could easily be condensed into just watching the boxset of ‘House’. One doctor commented: ‘Ten wearisome minutes to do what? Who needs to save lives when in less time I could boil an egg, have a relationship with Taylor Swift or come up with a Conservative health policy’.