Deluded or what?

“There are few better partners in the world than the NHS for anyone working in healthcare – we have an incredible asset there. The Google of healthcare should come out of the UK.”


15 thoughts on “Deluded or what?”

  1. So Much For Subtlety

    Well Google is a politically correct, mass information gathering centralized data-aggregator that would be a dream to any would-be totalitarian government.

    So quite a good fit to the NHS I would guess. In places with more private provision like France you could not get every single patient’s detail in a government database for the would- be googlers to abuse.

  2. In other news, does Sweden closing the border now means it is no longer the darling of the Guardisnistas?

    Swedish government: let’s open the borders. Everyone, come in! Congratulations, mwah!
    Later: arrgh, everyone’s coming here! Close the border!!

  3. Haha *cough* Connecting for Health *cough*

    They’re trialling e-referrals, as in, replacing doctors sending things in the post to consultants and back again. Not too dissimilar to things I was doing in a drug company (passing subjects to doctors, monitoring the progress) 7 or 8 years ago.

    That article shows the standard level of VCs out there. People who really don’t know any better than random, but stay in the job because they picked the right horse last time.

  4. That’s standard central planners’ logic. The Google of Healthcare, once well-established, would slot in very nicely with the NHS and its vast standardised datasets. But in the UK there’s no ecosystem, no market of competing buyers each willing to try out a new piece of software. That’s a necessary precondition to grow a successful company.

    Case in point: there exists a popular and widely-used software tool for ophthalmologists, called OpenEyes™. The ophthalmology sector is made up of independent private-sector providers; not the NHS.

  5. There’s an ecosystem of GP practices, and a (small) variety of GP management software, SystmOne and EMIS are the ones I’ve worked on. But, the NHS organisation tries to pick one and impose it across all “their” practices, I think half the practices I worked at said “we’ve used EMIS for years, we’re not going over to SystmOne” and have said vic versa.

    At least the software was originally written by GPs for GPs. EMIS used to be Egton Medical Information System, written by a couple of GPs in Egton in the Yorkshire Moors. And all the packages have a “import foreign data” option so a patient can move between GPs with different systems.

  6. Erm, those chaps with the TV adverts and high street shops are not – emphatically not – ophthalmologists.

    You’ll be describing Richard Murphy as a professor of economics next.

  7. Slightly O/T, but I have noticed in France that an awful lot of doctors are on holiday until after 20th January. It appears having millions of independent, competing doctors does not always give you a doctor when you need one, at least not without hunting around a bit. Granted, I’m after a specialist and not a GP, but still.

  8. Google of Healthcare? I’d buy that. Google has revenues of $50 billion, the NHS has revenues of $160 billion. If they could cut their revenue by 68% we would all be happier.

  9. I am curious, with all the hatred of the NIS would you rather have the corporate welfare that is the current US system?

  10. Bloke in Costa Rica

    Liberal Yank: God no. Just because NHS ≠ US system and the NHS is crap doesn’t mean anyone thinks the US system is a good idea. In fact I’d venture to say that it’s only by comparison to how you guys do things that the NHS appears to have anything going for it at all.

  11. @Liberal Yank

    No. The NHS just lets the Yanks do most of the investing and innovating then uses its monopoly position and huge buying power to buy them on the cheap. Some might even call it beggar thy neighbour (although they would be neo-liberal sophists).

  12. @ Bloke in Malta
    Hey, until the early “noughties” Britain was one of the top countries in the world for pharmaceutical research (and their UK labs provided much (probably most) of the valuable pharmaceutical research done by Pfizer and Smith Klein. The NHS got its drugs cheap because the Conservatives had done a deal with the pharmaceutical companies (the PPRS followed by the VPRS) that guaranteed them a return on capital on their research and they made most of their profits from exports. Alastair Cambell bears significant responsibility for the mess that NHS finances are in because he persuaded New Labour to tell GPs to prescribe Generics whenever possible for a soundbite although that *significantly increased* the NHS drugs bill.
    Let me explain – Glaxo gets a profit from supplying the NHS which is fixed as a %age of its accumulated unamortised research spend. So the marginal cost to the NHS of an extra dose of Ventolin or Becotide or Augmentin is equal to the marginal cost of production and distribution. But Blair says “use generics” so it pays some foreign company the cost of production – more than Glaxo’s ‘cos it doesn’t have the sasme economies of scale or the same decades of kbow-how – and distribution (obviously higher due to transport costs including shipping) plus a profit margin. So NHS bill is higher.
    That is apart from the effect on UK employment and the balance of payments.

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