Diagnosis R.I.P

Senior management’s attitude to patients and staff

If you came here looking for the DiagnosisN.F.I. blog then I’m afraid you’re too late. I’ve deleted all the posts and this is all that’s left.

Too be honest I can’t be arsed any more. The NHS Ambulance Service is fucking shambles. It used to be about caring for patients and taking them to hospital for definitive treatment. Now its all about Nu-Labour’s top-down control obsession, a.k.a. response times.

In the Nu-Labour ambulance world You, the patient, don’t matter. Management don’t give a toss about you; whether you live or die, suffer or get treated is immaterial. To them a 999 call is a pain in the arse; just another target to hit. And they certainly don’t give a shit about the staff: training’s non existent; development’s out the window; most of the vehicles are off the road with faults; equipment doesn’t work; we can’t get hold of the drugs we need; shifts go uncovered coz staff have just had enough – but still the relentless drive to meet those 8 minute response times goes on and on (even though there’s not a shred of evidence that it makes any difference).

I care about patients. I’m good with them and I treat them the way I’d want to be treated. In 12 years I’ve never had a complaint about my patient care and I’ve never had anyone question my treatment. That’s the way I think it should be. If I can treat them at home, then great. If they have to go to hospital, well that’s what we’re there for. After all the word ambulance is derived from the Latin ambulo (to travel, to take a walk).

I’ve lost heart in the current climate. I was informed the other day that I must now spend all my shift stuck in the response car out on cover “so we can hit our A cat response targets.” I told them to fuck off. I’ll be damned if I’m going to spend hours stuck on a street corner or driving aimlessly about. Ambulance crews can return to station but not response cars: another desperate move that shows how obsessed the management have become. They haven’t got a clue what’s really happening on the front-line. An operations manager recently expressed his surprise when he had to wait 20 minutes for a back-up ambulance with the patient only 5 minutes travel time away from the hospital. “Hey arsehole! wake up and welcome to the real world of solo response. A 45-90 minutes wait is now the norm“.


If your a senior ambulance manager or a control manager – then fuck off!! You’ve wrecked a once excellent service.

If your a Nu-Labour politico then I say to you – I hope you never have occasion to call an ambulance coz you’re in for one hell of a shock.

To all my patients – I’m sorry. I’m doing my best but in the current climate you don’t matter any more.


30 Responses to Diagnosis R.I.P

  1. Paul says:

    Sorry to see you go. I feel for you, and thank you (and all your “colleagues” across the country) for your hard work and dedication.

  2. caramaena says:

    I too, am sorry to see you go. I’m saddened you’ve lost heart because of the bureaucracy.

    Look after yourself.

  3. Tim says:

    Magwitch i’ve enjoyed your writing for a long time and i’m sorry to see you feel like this. Good luck in the future and i’ll miss your blog.


  4. Merys Jones says:

    Magwitch, sorry you decided to give up the blog, but I’m not surprised. You really do care for your patients and I learnt a lot coming out observing with you. Just don’t lose your soul, and email me if you want a chat.

  5. Dean says:

    I wish you were still writing. I really enjoyed reading your blog.

  6. LCFire says:


    I am so sorry that the bastards have finally got you beat. Like many have said here, and no doubt continue to say, is that you will be missed. Your writings were easy to read and I seriously believe that was a positive form of an outlet for your frustrations.

    You guys (and gals) at the front, on the sharp pointy receiving end deserve so much more, and blogs like yours and many others ARE being noticed by Joe Public and will soon build up momentum. But if your gone, the collective voice has one less and I am not sure there are many out there that can explain how crappy the situation really is.

    I strongly urge you to reconsider your decision to stop writing, you are truly gifted at the art of writing; the humor, the seriousness and compassion you clearly have for your patients WILL be very much missed.

    Keep fighting the good fight, we are all on yourside.

  7. Thorn says:

    Magwitch, you’ll be missed. I’m glad you’re angry, I only wish it would change something.

  8. Dreamsulike says:

    sorry to see you go dude. my old man did your job for 35 yrs and he agrees with all you said.

    take it easy

  9. Teresa says:

    …..and we lose another! Your writing is fantastic. So sorry the buggers have finally got you down.

    A huge thank you for doing the job you do, some of us appreciate you all. Good Luck X

  10. ecparamedic says:

    I know just where you are coming from dude.


  11. syl2000 says:

    I’ll miss you, Magwitch.

    I do understand why you’ve decided to quit, but I wish you’d left your posts up … they were such a wonderful testament to the dedication and sheer hard work of our front-line personnel in the face of public abuse and government mis-management.

    You have all my good wishes for the future … you certainly deserve better than you’ve had in the past.

  12. […] and there are any number of other things Dr Brown doesn’t mention, including the current state of our Ambulance Service and the fact that our NHS now employs one manager for every three doctors! Posted in Big […]

  13. Rich says:

    I have missed your posts. But you do what you feel the need to do, we have one life.

  14. mousie says:

    I still keep checking back here… just in case.


  15. easternparamedic says:

    As an ex single responder I whole heartily agree,so much in fact that I have returned to the ‘dark side’ and am now a member of a (becoming rarer) resource known as an ambulance crew, probably soon to become the only ambulance in our area capable of transporting a patient to hospital.

  16. Just discovered the blog. Absolutely excellent. Sorry you aren’t blogging any more. Can’t you change your mind? This means the goons in management have won.

  17. mousie says:

    Still checking…

  18. LanseloT says:

    Весьма спорно, но как вариант

  19. Hey. I’ve just finished a placement in A&E. Already I think the managers are a pain in the bum. They wander in there and point out there have been “3 breaches today!” like anyone cares.

    The NHS needs more love, less managers.

  20. Very informative site ….

  21. Marinkina says:

    Нет,по настоящиму улыбнул 8 пункт,просто представил такую ситуацию ))).

  22. Gavrilin says:

    Да,aleks,побороть лень, действительно иногда очень сложно..

  23. I have been following your blog and am sad to hear that you will not be continuing. What you have written in this blog has shocked me, these are issues that the general public are not aware of, which they should be really. Thank you for sharing!

  24. Rich says:

    Your still not here, the Black dog, surely must have been vanquished by now. Or maybe not.
    I miss your posts. I hope you have a great 2010 year if your still about. 🙂

  25. Jeanette K. says:

    I hope you’re still at least reading these. We really appreciate your honesty and it’s a shame that organizations can’t handle that type of criticism. Here’s to a wonderful 2010 and maybe a chance at you coming back and writing some more?!

  26. Medical says:

    It is difficult to conceive the stupidity of government run institutions, if private companies can operate successfully then why can’t the NHS?
    In my opinion they are gangsters; taking life savings from old people who get ill while those who never work a day in their lives get a free ride at the expense of those who get up each day and go to work!

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